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Opinion

  • Better Business Bureau is releasing its list of the top 10 scams and ripoffs of 2009. Many scams sought to take advantage of people who were suffering under tough economic circumstances - like the unemployed. Additionally, the use of free-trial offers to lock consumers into recurring credit and debit card charges was widespread online.

  • NORTH POLE - A drastic change in the local celebration of this year’s Christmas holiday may occur due to an overwhelming pandemic in the North Pole area.

    Over 80 percent of Christmas Village residents have been identified as carriers of the novel H0H0 Reindeer Flu virus.

    Santa Claus, gift-giver to millions and Christmas Village spokesperson, said he indeed suffered from a newer strand of the virus, known as H0H0H0.

    “I keep sneezing,” he said. “I’ve wiped my nose so red it looks like a cherry.”

  • The deadline is approaching to those who wish to throw their hats into the political ring.

    The county clerk’s office will close at 4 p.m. on Tuesday, Jan. 26. Unless you plan on participating in select non-partisan races, your opportunity to join the process will be over.

    So many people will gripe about government but will fail to do anything about it. Some won’t even go to vote on election.

    The best way to be part of the solution is to be part of the system. However, that is not always possible for a person to do that.

  • The holiday season is at the mid-way point.

    Christmas has come and gone and the New Year is quickly approaching.

    Since Santa Barr was rooted out of his normal newsprint space by the clever, but windy, Stephen Thomas, there were no “gifts” handed out to local officials.

    Instead, it will be New Year Baby Barr who will have to recap the past year and make a few resolutions for the upcoming year.

    Most should be taken with a proverbial grain of salt, although there are probably a few pieces of truth in many of them.

  • The waiting game.

    I’ve never been good at it.

    Patience is not a virtue.

    But you learn to adapt in certain situations.

    For example, when a governmental body goes behind closed doors to talk about litigation, potential litigation, what they perceive to be possible litigation, personnel issues, land acquisition and collective bargaining issues.

    And whatever other issues may arise, which aren’t legal but seldom proven.

    The audience has little to do but to mill around, share a few rumors and maybe pick up a tidbit of information.

  • FRANKFORT – With families preparing to hit the road for the holidays, Governor Steve Beshear joined Acting Transportation Secretary Mike Hancock today to announce an innovative step toward ensuring the safety of Kentucky drivers.

    In response to the growing number of drivers who text-message while driving, Gov. Beshear launched his Eyes on the Road effort - an executive order prohibiting text messaging by state employees who are driving government-owned vehicles

  • The reasons are varied but the bottom line is that there might be fewer solicitors knocking on doors in several northern Bullitt County communities.

    And it poses an interesting dilemma for people who make a practice of soliciting door-to-door.

    The cities of Hillview, Hebron Estates and Fox Chase are in the midst of passing ordinances that would place some stiff standards on for-profit operations that like to knock on doors.

    The school groups, the Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts and other non-profit groups will be OK.

    Others may not be so lucky.

  • Our first coffee for this year is Saturday at the C & C Restaurant, just off Louisville Road across from Busy Bee.  We’ll be there at 10:00 and continue for an hour or so.  I’ll bring information on bills that have been filed, but we can talk about anything you’d like. These are great meetings, my chance for one-on-one with you. I’ve always encouraged you to call me at home or in Frankfort and I’m sincere about that.

    These Saturday gatherings might be even better. The coffee is free, and I hope to see you there.

  • It has been a tough year for many people in our community and in the nation. At no time has more help been needed for so many.

    Once again, the community has come forward during the holiday season.

    Throughout the next few weeks, you’ll see some of the pictures of those working to help others.

    From the 60-plus food baskets collected by the Bullitt Central JROTC  to the 300 baskets given out by the Shepherdsville Food Basket program to the 400 distributed by Operation Santa, this is a giving community.

  • WASHINGTON, DC ee" Today Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) joined the Federal Trade Commission and the Better Business Bureau in a press conference to alert consumers to online deceptive marketing practices associated with free trials with a negative option feature.

    According to a Visa survey, 29 percent of American consumers have fallen victim to deceptive marketing when unscrupulous e-commerce merchants require them to cancel or opt-out of a recurring charge for future products or services.

  • BBB is alerting consumers to a holiday email scam that’s popping-up in consumers’ inboxes just in time for the holiday shopping season.

    The email appears to be a legitimate email from DHL Services, a parcel shipment company, but it actually contains an attachment that if opened, will infect your computer with a virus.

  • With double-digit unemployment rates in Kentucky, more Kentucky families are in need of a helping hand this holiday season. Attorney General Jack Conway asks that if you plan to give to a charity, give wisely.

    Unfortunately, there are unscrupulous or even fraudulent charities that prey on the generosity of Kentuckians.

  • There should be absolutely no reason not to have one of the fiscal court meetings each month in the evening hours.

    The positives for such a change should be overwhelming.

    Then, why hasn’t it been done in the past?

    Because it has.

    Under the John Harper administration, there were several night-time meetings held. Some of those may still be going on.

    It is great for candidates to use that as an item to talk with voters. And most voters would have to say that it is a great idea.

  • Most charities rely heavily on the goodwill of individual donors during the holiday season to fund their activities throughout the coming year.

    Last year, charity contributions totaled $307.65 billion: 75 percent of this total came from individuals, according to the Giving USA Foundation.

    BBB’s Wise Giving Alliance advises donors to research a charity prior to giving and provides five questions to ask when deciding where to contribute this holiday season.

    Is this a charity I can trust?

  • How much do you know about underage drinking?

    I just took a web quiz conducted by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) that tests people’s knowledge about underage drinking and I was surprised to find that many people who take the quiz don’t score so well.

    The quiz questions come from research sponsored by member agencies of the Interagency Coordinating Committee on the Prevention of Underage Drinking.

    The quiz is intended to dispel myths and stimulate action to prevent and reduce underage alcohol use.

  • Wow...now what do you do if you serve on the Shepherdsville City Council?

    You approved a totally unbinding advisory ballot to get the pulse of the community on the sale of alcoholic beverages on Sunday in places that serve at least 70 percent in food items.

    Everyone stated on more than one occasion that the turnout of the vote held on Dec. 3-4 meant nothing in terms of forcing the council to do anything.

    That point has been made very clear.

    But it begs to now ask the question - what do you do now?