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Lazy-i Podcast April 22, 2015

On Edge

Sitting across the table from Mark Christensen, the blonde-haired, blue-eyed state senator from Imperial, I can't help but wonder if he's packing heat. After all, the National Rifle Association-endorsed Christensen, 48, has introduced some of the most radical gun-rights bills in the country, including a measure that would have allowed teachers to carry guns in school. Another, the so-called...

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Sun Reflection

See also: Tax form led Sun to Boys Town's 'hidden' assets When readers picked up their March 30, 1972 issue of the weekly Sun Newspaper, they could hardly believe their eyes. The small but enterprising paper with multiple neighborhood editions had called out a venerable Omaha institution, Boys Town, in crusading journalistic fashion terms. No crime was alleged, but rather the violation of a...

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<p>The TransCanada company wants to install a large-diameter, high-pressure crude oil pipeline called “The XL” through 110 miles of the eight-state High Plains Aquifer, the most valuable portion of which sits under Nebraska’s Sandhills. </p>

Water Amnesia

BY JULIE MEYERS, COURTESY OF PRAIRIE FIRE Scientists now know that ground and surface water should be treated as a single hydrological system, because that's how they behave in nature. Since 1996, Nebraska has changed its law twice to finally recognize this profound connection of surface water and to bring coherency to its water law. But recently, apparently fearful of being viewed by the oil...

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Whirling Crops

When State Sen. Ken Haar drives through Iowa or Colorado and sees the towering turbines that have helped make Nebraska's neighbors national leaders in wind-power production, “It makes me think we've got this great energy resource in Nebraska and we're not using it,” he says. Nebraska is among the country's leaders in potential wind power capacity, but has just nine more wind turbines than it...

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Not So Neutral

Mention net neutrality to a web-savvy proponent, and you may be subjected to a lengthy diatribe against censorship and unfair business practices at the hands of telecommunications companies. Mention the term to a congressman who grew up in the age of typewriters and tape decks, and the reaction could be similar to the look you give someone when asked to solve a pre-calculus formula a decade after...

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Getting healthy foods to rural, inner-city Nebraska

A proposal aimed at making it easier to get healthy food in cities and rural areas is advancing in the legislature, despite questions about how effective it would be. Omaha Senator Brenda Council says when she first started thinking about her bill, she assumed it would apply mostly to cities. But she soon found out that lack of access to fresh fruits, vegetables, lean meats and other healthy...

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Environmental Alchemy

When it rains in Omaha, it pours raw sewage, industrial waste and toxic chemicals into nearby waterways. The city’s century-old sewer system is designed to either put it there or into your basement. Neither is an inviting option. But that design is changing thanks to a federal mandate from the Environmental Protection Agency. The oldest part of the city — nearly everything east of 72nd St. —...

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<p>Some of the community leaders behind the first South Omaha Violence and Intervention meeting.  </p>

Ganging Up

Alberto Gonzales didn’t enter the meeting room at the South Omaha Library on March 15 so much as the room opened up and embraced him. The 30 or so community leaders at the first South Omaha Violence Prevention and Intervention meeting included: local clergy members; representatives from the mayor’s office; citizens; school advisors; the captain of Omaha’s Southeast Police Precinct; and...

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