"Whatchamacolumn" by Jeb Bladine

The News-Register publisher writes about the community; people; local, state and national affairs; and sometimes whimsey.

Jeb Bladine: Recording history, 1 meeting at a time

For 40-plus years, I’ve had more than a passing fascination with historic records of local activities … some might call it a mild obsession. In recent years, the city of McMinnville has become ...

We built the road; now fix the signage

Here’s a long-awaited sentence: I drove the Newberg-Dundee Bypass! It’s just Phase 1, thus incomplete, And funding and topographic challenges caused an interchange flaw that may become a black ...

Jeb Bladine: With few sibs, you depend on cousins

Year-end holidays remind us how families are complicated foundations of our lives. As someone with small nuclear families — both vertically and horizontally — I always marvel at how people ...

Jeb Bladine: Personal lists of ‘prominent deaths’

Today we continue our year-end tradition of reviewing the most prominent local news stories, and recognizing the loss of a few well-known people. Our practice of listing prominent deaths always overlooks ...

Jeb Bladine: Think about tax law impact on donations

Americans may be absorbed with late-stage holiday shopping, but their growing Christmas spirit also kindles a surge in charitable donations. Informed sources estimate that 30 percent of charitable giving ...

Jeb Bladine: Anti-media solution: Lynch journalists

Philippe Reines recently wrote: “The havoc Donald Trump’s presidency has wreaked will take years to fully understand, let alone recover from. High on the list of things to undo will be the ...

Jeb Bladine: Reader nudges N-R for shooting update

Monday, reacting to a Saturday shooting in McMinnville, a frustrated reader nudged us with this website post: “How about an update, News-Register.” Tuesday the reader added, “I don’t ...

Jeb Bladine: Give the council a landfill of testimony

It’s great how one of McMinnville’s most diligent city councilors still has confidence in quality public input on important government issues. Let’s hope that’s not just a bunch ...

Jeb Bladine: Obsession blurs lines of propriety

Obsession is a dangerous trait. Just ask J.W. Millegan of McMinnville. We don’t know exactly why a swarm of FBI agents stormed Millegan’s downtown McMinnville home Wednesday morning, except ...

Jeb Bladine: Online map shows Mac crime reports

McMinnville is experiencing a spike in thefts, burglaries and property crimes, providing yet another reminder for residents to lock their cars, deadbolt their homes and stay alert. The most prominent ...

Jeb Bladine: Complex laws set deadly force rules

The shooting of a home intruder this week sparked debates about rights of self-defense. As Capt. Rhonda Sandoval points out in today’s news story, Oregon laws on the use of deadly force are complicated. First ...

Jeb Bladine: Good time to revisit the First Amendment

The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, adopted in 1791, underpins America’s most important individual freedoms. Every so often, it’s pertinent to remember that one simple, but very complicated, ...

Jeb Bladine: What an interesting cast of characters!

I can imagine your eyes rolling as the Evergreen saga produces another high stakes legal drama. This time, Evergreen Aviation & Space Museum is a much-interested bystander. The Falls Event Center ...

Jeb Bladine: Projects responding to anticipated growth

Driving around town this year, it feels like significant growth in McMinnville: more traffic; lots of construction; field work marking approval of a 278-unit subdivision. And there are so many planning ...

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