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ALPERN AT LARGE--Every once in a while we recognize how we've constrained ourselves in our way of thinking.

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PERSPECTIVE--And, in fact, Americans appear happy enough with a wide range of democratic socialist institutions in the United States, including public schools, public parks, minimum wage laws, Social Security, public radio, unemployment insurance, public universities, Medicare, public libraries, the U.S. postal service, public roads, and high taxes on the wealthy.

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PERSPECTIVE--Days after amplifying a right-wing pastor’s warning of a “Civil War-like fracture” if he is removed from office, President Donald Trump late Tuesday said the impeachment inquiry launched by House Democrats is a “coup,” heightening fears that Trump could refuse to allow a peaceful transition of power if he is ousted by Congress or defeated in 2020.

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VOICES-Whether or not Donald Trump continues in office in the near future, he has already contributed to a language of immigration that’s both larger than him and that will outlast him.

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BCK FILE--Entitlement, wealth, and privilege may be on the way out as a protection for committing any number of crimes and lapses of ethics. Or will things remain the same? 

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EASTSIDER-I’m guessing that less than five percent of registered voters in California pay any attention to how our California legislature does business.

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OTHER WORDS-Though lacking the size and prestige of The New York Times or The Washington Post, The Storm Lake Times is arguably just as important. 

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ALPERN AT LARGE--This Saturday, as stated in my last piece, there will be a national conference in Mar Vista (home of the secondary highway-turned gridlock/business roadblock on Venice Blvd. Among other things, the politicization and ideological hijacking of transportation will be discussed. 

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GELFAND’S WORLD (PORDENONE, ITALY--Here at Le Giornate del Cinema Muto, otherwise known as the Pordenone silent film festival, there has been a chance to consider both world politics and art. World politics is losing out, but art is hanging in there. 

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PLANNING WATCH--Real estate interests have sucked up so much of the oxygen at LA’s City Hall that patently false predictions about an impending LA’s population boom continuously pop up  – like methane bubbles at the LaBrea Tar Pits.(Photo above: Methane bubble at the LaBrea Tar Pits: A picture-perfect metaphor for the perpetual forecasts of a Los Angeles population boom.)  

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MY TURN--The Greta/AOC generation is marching for our place on this planet.  

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RANTZ & RAVEZ-My recent RantZ regarding Senator Bob Hertzberg eliminating California’s Posse Comitatus law -- the legal requirement compelling a person to assist a police officer during an arrest when ordered to do so by the officer -- drew a quick and defensive response from him.

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