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Local Opinion

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Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Talk of the Town The Newton Daily News recently hit the streets and asked local citizens the following question:

What are your thoughts on the recent U.S. government shutdown?

“I think it’s really silly.”

Taryn Williams

“It makes our government seem childish with nobody getting along.”

“Don’t get me started.”

Steve Horstman

“It can mess with my veteran benefits, and it’s a mess.”

Cindy Dittmer

Online Poll

Rodney Kelso

Joe Heller Cartoon

This week’s Question: Who do you blame most for the current U.S. government shutdown? Vote today at www.newtondailynews.com!

Previous Question: How much is the U.S. government shutdown affecting your daily life? A lot

10%

Some 7% A little

11%

Not at all

72%

Don’t Forget Facebook

You can comment on the happenings of Newton and Jasper County 24-7 on the Daily News Facebook page. Check it out today! Ty’s Take

My bowling team not be the greatest, but we do have fun Last week while at the office, I asked Daily News sports writer Dustin Turner a question that made him smirk and shake his head at me. The question at hand was, “ W h a t day were the bowlBy Ty Rushing ing results pub- Daily News Staff Writer lished?” The reason Dustin reacted the way he did was because I wanted to see my name in the paper under the bowling results, but hey why not? Every Wednesday at Cardinal Lanes, my team, “The Younger Professionals,” and I bowl as members of the This Bud’s For You League. We are probably the worst team in the league, but I guarantee you no team has as much fun losing as we do. Our sole purpose is to have fun and we only try to win if the team we are playing against happens to be a tab bit arrogant or unpleasant, but other than that, it’s all about having fun. I also think we have a nice balance on our roster. We have our captain Nicole “Rojo Grande” Lindstrom, who is such a serious bowler she has her own ball and shoes. It turns out her mom is a huge bowler as well and she is second generation pin maven. I don’t even own a bowling shirt and I’m about as streaky as they come. In addition to being captain, Rojo is our best and most consistent bowler. She is the heart and soul of the Younger Professionals. The only person who is about as bad as me consistently is Dustin himself. To give an

Dan Goetz Publisher Mandi Lamb Associate Editor

example of how unfocused we are as a duo, last week we spent more time focusing on collecting MLB-themed ping pong balls than knocking down pins. No wonder we lost all three games, however, we had a great time and he get a Boston Red Socks ball we’re both convinced will make them win the World Series. I’m not a Red Sox fan (Go Royals), but I am a fan of sports superstition. Remember, it’s only weird if it doesn’t work. Next up is another Daily News staff member Dave Hon. Dave actually took a bowling course in college and is without a doubt our next best player. Unlike my clunky, but awesome Fred Flinstone-esque delivery, Dave delivers his ball with absolute precision and focus. He makes it look so effortless and it’s great to have that kind of consistency on your team. The final member is my good friend Zach Johnson. Zach is the wild card. One week, Zach could bowl worse than me and the very next this guy can have multiple strikes and spares in a frame. Zach is a very competitive guy and when he gets fired up, victory can all but be assured. So that in short is a snapshot of my motley crew whom I spend my Wednesday evenings with. Are we the best team? God, no! However, I doubt no team has as much fun as us. Also, I’m sure we knock back the most pitchers and we have some pretty good beer pong and quarters players. Other teams may beat us on the lanes, but I dare the “Pinheads” or “Team Samurai” to challenge us at anything involving beer. I guarantee we will win each and every time and have fun doing it.

Newton Daily News Editorial Board Bob Eschliman Editor Kelly Vest Prod./Circulation

Jeff Holschuh Ad Director Brenda Lamb Business Mgr.

Opinions expressed in letters and columns are those of the writers and do not represent the views of the Newton Daily News.

Got an opinion? Let us know! Send submissions to the Daily News, P.O. Box 967, Newton, IA or newsroom@newtondailynews.com

Guest Commentary

Iowans deserve better

By Ken Sagar President, Iowa Federation of Labor

It’s no secret – many hardworking Iowa families are struggling. That is why it is so disheartening that Governor Branstad’s administration has responded to Iowans’ calls for change with sleight of hand. Rather than take steps to help Iowa families, the governor and his cronies are playing political games with important employment information. Since reassuming office, Governor Branstad’s has failed to create better conditions or develop better job training and preparation programs for workers. In fact, he has limited access for job assistance services by closing dozens of Workforce Development offices across the state. Rather than taking real steps to create jobs, he and his administration have devoted their energies to hiding the problem by developing a manipulated statistic that can return inflated employment numbers. The statistic is called ‘gross over-themonth employment gains.’ In its attempt to view Iowa’s employment problem through rose-colored glasses, the Branstad Administration has added this statistic to the Iowa Workforce Development’s monthly jobs total reporting. As the name implies, this new number only counts jobs added. Obviously, this gives a flawed idea of the true jobs situation, as it doesn’t account for jobs lost during the same duration. Think about it: You are hired for a temporary job, and a few weeks later your temporary position is no longer needed and you are let go. Given the nature of temporary work, this could happen three or four times in a year. Under Governor Branstad’s fuzzy math, you’ve helped to create three or four Iowa jobs over this period. It doesn’t matter that each one of those jobs ended. According to the Branstad administration, four jobs have been created. This

comes despite the fact that, at best, only one of these jobs existed at a time. It is shameful, and ultimately damaging to Iowans, for the Governor to waste taxpayers’ money and state officials’ time on this sort of shenanigans. This isn’t a jobs strategy. It’s a political strategy to defend a Branstad campaign promise. While running for governor, candidate Branstad pledged to create 200,000 new jobs for the state. So far, he has fallen far short of that promise. According to figures available on the Iowa Workforce Development website, only 7,400 more Iowans had jobs in August 2013 than in January 2011 when Governor Branstad took office. Given that Governor Branstad is in the tail end of the third year of his current term, he has very little to show for his efforts. This summer Governor Branstad gave a speech at an ALEC event where he stated that there are more Iowan’s working then at any time in the state’s history. Yet an Iowa Workforce Development report (Iowa’s Workforce and the Economy 2013) does not show the Governor’s statement to be true. Earlier this month, the Iowa Accountability Project filed an open records request with Iowa Workforce Development, asking that it make public its conversations with the governor and members of his administration about how this dubious number has made its way into official state business. Iowa families deserve a full accounting of what the “gross over-the-month employment gains” statistic means. But more than that, they deserve real job creating actions and policies out of the governor and his administration. Flawed numbers and rosy looking reports don’t keep a roof over Iowa families’ heads, or put food on their tables. Jobs do that, and it’s time Governor Branstad helps deliver some real ones.

The First Amendment

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. Give Us Your Views

Letters to the Newton Daily News should not exceed 400 words and should include the writers’ name, address and daytime telephone number. All letters are subject to editing for grammar and punctuation, or to remove potentially libelous material. Send letters to P.O. Box 967, Newton, IA 50208, or to newsroom@newtondailynews.com via email.

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