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"Whatchamacolumn" by Jeb Bladine

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

Jeb Bladine: Local debate drawn to downtown hotels

Full disclosure: The writer has a financial interest in this subject. Our family and newspaper company own two of three Third Street buildings that developers propose to buy, tear down, and replace with ...

Jeb Bladine: Abortion rights rise in Oregon campaign

Quick: What group has the largest number of registered voters in Oregon? Hint: It’s a trick question. Remembering that the reference was “group,” not political party, you might name ...

Jeb Bladine: Cybercrime finds victims worldwide

Cybercrime, ranging from minor irritations to financial devastation, is rampant worldwide. Cybercriminals don’t know you, and wouldn’t care if they did. They are faceless, nameless scourges ...

Jeb Bladine: Important year at Linfield University

September begins an important school year for Linfield University, and in many ways for rekindling long-time ties between Linfield and the McMinnville community. We are reminded from Linfield’s website: “Linfield ...

Jeb Bladine: New reporter gets a happy reception

We didn’t throw a party when Scott Unger joined the News-Register reporting staff last week. But we thought about it. Unger, an experienced reporter, hit the newsroom floor running after a few deep-dives ...

Jeb Bladine: Locals enjoying event-rich August

August … What a month! Like June and July, August is fulfilling promises made when The Oregonian compiled a statewide calendar of summer events with this introduction: “Summer events have ...

Jeb Bladine: Jack Crabtree followed clear moral compass

Jack Crabtree, 62, died far too young. Graveside services Friday (today) will celebrate his memory and promise a new life – services I regrettably will miss. Were that different, I would be telling ...

Jeb Bladine: Too many jobs for too few candidates

America’s nationwide workforce crisis has triggered a mass waiting game. Businesses and institutions are challenged by the inability to find qualified employees to fill key positions. As a result, ...

Jeb Bladine: Law change allows working pensions

It’s Day 26 of 39 “Dog Days of Summer,” and America is sweltering from coast to coast. The sizzling heat wave finally moderated in the East but not in the Southwest; locally, people are ...

Kirby Neumann-Rea/News-Register##Members of the Lafayette  U honk! We drink!  entourage gather next to the sign that led to an estimated thousands of motorists’ greetings in response to the happy invitation.

Back, and Forth: You don't need a mullet wig to enjoy the quirk around us

I’ve been thinking a lot about the strange and unusual around us — what you might call “quirk.” Quirk is both quicksilver and quotidian. It can pass in an instant or stand everyday ...

Jeb Bladine: TML talks focus on commercial, traffic

Editorial commentary today summarizes a topic — Three Mile Lane development — that spans a half century of public planning and private development, and has generated an encyclopedia-size body ...

Jeb Bladine: Unplugging efforts still a work in progress

It’s been two months since I wrote about “digital balance” in this space — efforts to offset excess attention given to the Internet, cell phones, video games, social media and the ...

Jeb Bladine: Maybe it's all just collateral damage

Old quotes can mature with time, like this one by Joe Gandelman in 2012: “Here’s a prediction about real gun control reform: Don’t. Hold. Your. Breath. It’s unlikely to happen ...

Jeb Bladine: Complex context of local growing pains

In case you hadn’t noticed, McMinnville is experiencing some growing pains. It happened around 1980, when the city population hit 15,000; about 2000, when that population passed 25,000; and now, ...