Today we offer up just a trio of thumbs. We didn't have time for more; once we heard there might, maybe, possibly, could be some snow flakes in the forecast, we had to get to the store to stock up on bread, milk and eggs. Chips and salsa, too, because, well, why not?
[THUMBS UP] So now the carrot-dangling has begun in Pope County's casino drama. Good. The people of Pope County should squeeze any organization that wants to install a casino there for as much as they possibly can get. That's exactly what the resulting casino will do to its customers. A Mississippi-based company that hopes to get the state's permission to build and operate a casino in Pope County has pulled out all the stops trying to wriggle its way into the opportunity to separate gamblers from their money for years to come. Pope County voters have demonstrated, shall we say, a resistance to a casino, but Arkansas voters decided otherwise last year when they legalized four casinos for the state -- in Hot Springs and West Memphis, in Jefferson County and in Pope County. The Mississippi firm now has sweetened the pot, promising $1 million a year for 20 years for local educational programs if it's allowed to operate there. Others have expressed interest in the gaming license, too. It's our guess the casino will eventually go there whether locals want it or not, but we like the idea of locals demanding that their local community get as much benefit out of the deal as possible. If a company is going to essentially get a monopoly, make'em pay for the privilege.
Give’em a thumb
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[THUMBS DOWN] A few readers offered a head-scratching response to the headline in Monday's newspaper: "UA library checkouts fall as books go elsewhere." How was it one put it? "Well, duh!" That's probably an expected reaction to a library at the University of Arkansas that's clearly de-emphasizing books. The UA's Mullins Library is, today, caught in the middle of what libraries used to be and what they say libraries are becoming. That means they've hauled a lot of books away into storage in preparation of about $16.5 million in renovations to create more study space, with many books kept at a storage facility a little less than a mile from the main campus. Requested materials, such as books, will be retrieved as needed, and that will free up space on campus for the apparently in-demand study space. The in-progress transition has disrupted circulation numbers and reduced the number of library visitors, but librarians express confidence they're still meeting the information needs of students and others. Perhaps the new library approach will one day earn a thumbs up, but the in-between time understandably makes book lovers who equate libraries with books a bit squeamish.
[THUMBS UP] The country says it will install more guards at its southern border to prevent entry of undocumented people. The United States? No, this time it's Mexico, which wants to crack down on people flowing across its border with Guatemala. Apparently, border security does have some value. Nobody, however, has suggested that Guatemala will pay for it.
Commentary on 01/10/2019
Print Headline: Thursday's thumbs