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Local Columns

On Nature: “Ding” was right

Jay N. “Ding” Darling, the noted conservationist and Pulitzer-winning editorial cartoonist for the Des Moines Register, was correct. He understood that if we abuse the land and its harbored wildlife, we will have less to pass on to our children and grandchildren. Wildlife habitat that is ...

Dengler Domain: School Vouchers

For the Republican trifecta-controlled Iowa government, most bills supported by one part of the trifecta easily sail through the other parts. What is happening in the Iowa government right now is fascinating. This is a curious case of interparty, government squabbling over private school ...

Dengler Domain: Opera houses, theaters

One of my favorite pastimes is exploring old buildings. The good news is Iowa is full of old buildings from farmsteads to small towns to the big city. Old is all around and old is not bad. Some of the best old buildings to look at, especially in small towns, are opera houses and theaters. These ...

On Nature: Rare Earth Powerhouse

One of the hindrances to the development of alternative energy is the shortage of rare earth elements such as neodymium and dysprosium that are essential in the powerful magnets used in wind turbines and electric vehicle motors. Currently, domestic production of these critically needed elements ...

Dengler Domain: Rural Schools

Last week the Iowa Senate passed Senate File 2369. A part of this bill would allow some public school students to use some of their per-pupil state funding allocation toward tuition or other educational expenses at a private school. This could hurt public schools and even more so, rural public ...

Dengler Domain: April Fools’ Day

April Fools’ Day talks a big game, but nothing happens. Not one time has this day come and gone, and there was something which fooled me. I do not know any pranksters, but this day is all talk and no walk. Never once has a friend or family member started off a sentence with, “Oh, you know ...

On Nature: Climate Predictions Happening

The world’s climate is changing, caused by an atmosphere warmed by the increased amount of carbon dioxide from the burning of fossil fuels. Atmospheric scientists have warned for many years that this warming would have serious consequences, and now, according to the book “A Global Warming ...

On Nature: Arctic Warming

It is well known that the Arctic has warmed much faster than the rest of the world, but the reasons for this accelerated warming are less clear. Part of it is caused by changes in the Arctic’s albedo or reflectivity. Snow and ice reflect much of the sun’s light. However, as the Arctic ...

Dengler Domain: History

History is beautiful. Every little part of it. The best part is that is always around. Every day, a new piece of history can be unveiled. For example, driving through Pleasantville, Iowa, I came across an old school or Masonic Temple with gorgeous stained glass. While it did not look used for ...

On Nature: Introducing David Voigts

Tama-Grundy Publishing is excited to welcome native Tama Countian David Voigts as its newest columnist. Voigts is a retired ecologist and the current Conservation Chair for the Prairie Rapids Audubon Society. Having grown up in rural Tama County, Voigts spent many youthful days hunting and ...