Cumberland Times-News

Jan Alderton - Opinion

January 8, 2009

We can track state's spending

(Continued)



Over the next couple of weeks, the station will hawk a $200 coin set with each of the 44 presidents on a South Dakota quarter. A gold presidential pocket watch with Obama’s image can be had for $90. A coin and stamp set commemorating Martin Luther King Day and Obama’s inauguration is $20.

Speaking of the inauguration, it promises to be a prosperous time for porta-potty firms. With as many as 1 million people expected in Washington, the Portable Sanitation Association said its guidelines suggest the city will need 12,000 porta-potties on the Mall....

Scripps Howard News Service carried an item recently about changes you may see in your doctor’s office — because of a new ethics code from the nation’s drugmakers.

The code ends the long-standing practice of sales reps leaving promotional pens, pads, mugs, etc. with physicians. The policy does not stop distribution of samples. Nor does it bar consulting deals with doctors or sponsorship of physician seminars....

Ever thought about riding a bicycle to work? It could put some money in your pocket.

Employees who regularly use their bicycles to go to and from work are eligible for a $20-a-month, tax-free reimbursement from their employers for bicycle-related expenses. The employers, in turn, will be able to deduct the expense from their federal taxes.

The Bicycle Commuter Act is part of a larger set of Renewable Energy Tax Credit initiatives included in the Emergency Economic Stabilization Act of 2008. The legislation was signed into law by President Bush in early October....

Seen on the Internet — Funny politics quotes:

• Asking an incumbent member of Congress to vote for term limits is a bit like asking a chicken to vote for Colonel Sanders. — Bob Inglis

• If elected, I will win. — Pat Paulsen

• Never vote for the best candidate, vote for the one who will do the least harm. — Frank Dane

• He knows nothing and thinks he knows everything. That points clearly to a political career — George Bernard Shaw

• If you can’t convince them, confuse them. — Harry S. Truman

• The first Presidential debate was down in Florida. Residents spent all day putting plywood on their televisions. — David Letterman

Jan Alderton is managing editor of the Cumberland Times-News. Contact Jan Alderton at jpalderton@times-news.com.

Text Only
Jan Alderton - Opinion
  • Internet sales tax coming?

    Look for Maryland legislators to zero-in on how to tax Internet sales when the General Assembly convenes next year.

    June 25, 2011

  • Frederick may lose postal jobs

    At one time, it appeared that U.S. Postal Service jobs in Cumberland would be moved to Frederick. But the agency couldn’t justify the move, so now it is considering moving Frederick’s operations to Baltimore.

    May 14, 2011

  • JAN-ALDERTON-1.jpg Their days are numbered

    Incandescent light bulbs and mercury thermometers — long staples of everyday life — are nearing extinction in the United States.

    February 27, 2011 1 Photo

  • JAN-ALDERTON-1.jpg Why not ask those who know?

    Instead of considering another survey about the condition of its streets, the city of Cumberland should turn to its own employees for input.

    January 23, 2011 1 Photo

  • JAN-ALDERTON-1.jpg Let’s test your memory

    How is your recollection of major local news events of the past year?

    December 19, 2010 1 Photo

  • Talking turkey (and more)

    While researching Cumberland Evening Times files for some information on local historical sites, I ran across several items that gave a glimpse of local Thanksgiving observances 90 or so years ago.

    November 21, 2010

  • JAN-ALDERTON-1.jpg eEdition generates interest

    Although it been less than two weeks since it was launched, the Cumberland Times-News eEdition is generating a lot of interest.

    October 26, 2010 1 Photo

  • JAN-ALDERTON-1.jpg Meetings: Still only partial sunshine

    On March 15, 1973, The Cumberland News — which was the morning newspaper published by the Times-News — carried the following column written by me about the need for more open government in Maryland.

    September 26, 2010 1 Photo

  • JAN-ALDERTON-1.jpg We’ll get a break this winter

    Amidst one of the hottest summers on record comes a forecast for how much snow we might expect this coming winter.

    August 8, 2010 1 Photo

  • JAN-ALDERTON-1.jpg Guess who’s 60? Beetle!

    A Deep Creek Lake house recently sold for $3.5 million — a record for the Western Maryland resort spot.

    July 5, 2010 1 Photo