Columns/Opinions

Thu
07
Nov

"There’s no way of over emphasizing importance of great management" by: John Sample

   I know your retirement account has little appreciation for another record high. 
   I mean who likes looking at your monthly statement and seeing it grow in value. 
   While this is great for our holiday spirit, less than a year ago it only took the Federal Reserve to raise rates and send the markets south. 
   While it is nice to be here, it is a tenuous place to be. 
   I find more analysts agreeing there is no doubt that a recession is coming, but it may be a while before we see it. 
   Though a GDP of just over 2 percent is no great shakes, it can sustain this market to past the election next November.
I wanted to talk about value. 
   I have mentioned the trials that General Electric has been through over the last couple of years. 
   We have seen this great industrial stock drop from over 30 points to as low as 6. 

Thu
07
Nov

Take greater control of your 401(k)

   If your employer offers a 401(k) or similar plan, you’ve got a powerful retirement-savings tool. And yet, how well you do with your 401(k) depends greatly on your choices and actions. 
   What steps can you take to maximize the benefits of your plan? 
   For one thing, review the contribution rate that may have come with your plan if you were automatically enrolled in it. 
   If you can afford to contribute more than this level, consider doing so. 
   At the very least, put in as much as necessary to earn your employer’s matching contribution, if one is offered. 
   Next, you also should review the initial investment mix that may have come with your plan. Ideally, you’d want to spread your dollars among a mix of your 401(k)’s available investments to give yourself the greatest growth potential, given your risk tolerance and time horizon. 

Thu
07
Nov

"Fairy tales don’t exist, but living with peace, joy from Lord sure do" by Betsy Monico

   My daughter and I just started our first Christmas Hallmark movie of the season. They rank up on the top of our tradition’s list. Before the first commercial even began, I mentally made plans to put my tree up. 
   Never would skip over Thanksgiving. It is my favorite holiday of the year. 
   Shopping is not really my thing. The commercialism of Christmas wears me out. 
   I thankfully know the difference between wants and needs. I try my best daily to teach my kids the same. One of the boys just came into the living room and made fun of us for watching another Hallmark. 
   He summed up what we already know is true. “They will end up together - it will be a fairy tale ending.” 
   Fairy tales begin with once upon and end with happily ever after. With Jesus, heaven equals happily ever after. Life on earth is anything but a fairy tale. 

Thu
07
Nov

"Words for Kanye’s recent statements about following Christ" by: Caleb Gibson

   Kanye West recently made statements about God and his faith. He said that he is a follower of Jesus Christ! 
   How awesome is that! What should be our response as Christians when a celebrity gets saved? We should rejoice!  
   The final gift given to the prodigal son was a celebration. I love what the Word says, “And they began to celebrate.” 
   I can see all the angels in Heaven giving each other high fives as they hear about someone who gives their life to Jesus. 
   Although I’ve never been in Heaven this gives us a glimpse into what it will be like, a celebration. 
   Remember heaven is a perfect example of how we should act on this Earth. 
   God wants His will to be done on Earth as it is in Heaven. What happens in Heaven is good because God controls what takes place. 
   We have such turmoil and stress here on Earth because we live with people who make poor decisions. 

Thu
07
Nov

"Reel Reviews: ‘Terminator: Dark Fate’ ignores 3 previous films with Cameron back at helm" by: Jessica Shepard

   It’s been nearly 30 years since James Cameron dabbled in the “Terminator” franchise and it shows.
   Well, mostly to hardcore fans at least.
   But, “Terminator: Dark Fate” definitely nods back to the originals and has brought back Linda Hamilton and Arnold Schwarzenegger.
   I’ve been a fan of the original Cameron-lead films since day one and the more recent additions have always felt like they fell short for me.
   Granted, they were directed by different people but, “Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines, “Terminator Salvation,” and “Terminator Genisys” always felt wrong or off to me.
   Cameron has gone on record saying that Dark Fate is a direct sequel to his first two iterations and the other movies, and the TV show “Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles” happen in alternate timelines.
   Which is as good a science fiction excuse as any.

Thu
31
Oct

"Years pass and importance of my love of music lasts" by: Jessica Shepard

   Frequent readers of my column have heard time and again how important music is to me.
   That hasn’t changed at all since I turned 32 last weekend.
   To be fair, not a lot has changed at all either.
   I’ll just give it a few more weeks and see if anything is different then.
   Back to the music commentary!
   A close friend of mine recently spent the weekend at a music festival and it had me racking my brain to recall the last time I saw a live concert.
   I’m not including musical theater or local band/choir concerts in this column.
   And it’s not that I have anything against those sorts of live entertainment venues – I used to be a choir kid, after all.
   I’m talking about moderately more famous or infamous artists – depends on who I choose to see most of all.
   It’s also a little heartbreaking when I remember that one of my favorite bands has broken up and it’s impossible to see them play together right now.

Thu
31
Oct

"Let’s fund our state parks, historic sites for future generations of Texans" By Sen. Lois Kolkhorst and Rep. John Cyrier

   Some of our families’ best summer adventures over the years have been at Texas’s state parks. And the numbers indicate that you and your family have probably enjoyed our parks and historic sites over the years, too: nearly 10 million people visited state parks in 2017, up about 40 percent since 2012. 
   Texas is growing quickly. More people are visiting the parks than ever before, and we couldn’t be happier about it. However, this puts pressure on already-strained park infrastructure, much of which is ailing.  
   Altogether, our state parks sit on about 640,000 acres of land, much of which was first developed by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930s and 40s. In the decades that have followed, the infrastructure — from roads, to marinas, campgrounds, swimming pools, utility systems, sewage treatment, you name it — simply hasn’t kept up with 21st century demands.   

Thu
31
Oct

"New record highs for the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index" by: John Sample

   We were here in late July before concerns over an inverted yield curve sent the bulls running and the bears roaring. 
   That, along with trade wars and political unrest in Washington, were more than the market could support. 
   It’s noteworthy that the last five trading days in October were historically some of the best for the market. It appears that such will be the case this week. 
   So, I’ll remind you that you have no profit until you take it. Moreover, if you can’t show a profit in a stock at this level, I am not sure you will ever see the green light.
   This is all happening due to earnings reports that generally have beaten expectations. 
   You can look to Master Card, Visa and Pay Pal better-than-expected-earnings reports to show the consumer has not stopped spending. 
   Drug companies such as Pfizer, Merck and Bristol Myers also produced better-than-expected earnings. 

Thu
31
Oct

Sustainable investing can pay off – in several ways

   Today, many people want their investment dollars to benefit the world.
   Should you, too, consider sustainable investing?
   And, if you do, must you accept weaker returns from your investments?
   First, here’s a little background.
   Sustainable investing can have different names, such as environmental, social and governance (ESG) investing or impact investing.
   When following a sustainable investing approach, you might seek to invest in companies that address the sustainability challenges facing their businesses, industries, and society today.
   Or you might avoid investing in companies that are falling behind their peers on things like employee practices or natural resource usage.
   But can sustainability be profitable to you?
   Of course, each investment is different, and when you invest, you can expect that prices will fluctuate, and you could lose some of the value of your investment.

Thu
31
Oct

"The Lord tells us to step into the unknown and follow him" by: Betsy Monico

   Every Sunday, the Lord is faithful and allows me to gather my thoughts from the previous week and somehow put them into words. 
   Knowing the chaos and confusion that I live in and honestly allow myself to live in, it is a miracle. People always say that they don’t know how I do what I do. 
   Well, I sleep late on Saturdays and way too often on Sundays. I also live life one day at a time and refuse to worry about the future. 
   This decision comes from Matthew 6:34. The Word instructs us to not worry about tomorrow, because today has enough worries of its own. 
   God has often worked out the details of the next day for me. 
   I trust Him. I also do not commit to things that do not directly involve my family.  
   My hobbies are few, but my blessings are many because I choose tunnel vision. 
   On the weeks that my calendar seems full, it is because I am doing something that involves us. 

Pages

Subscribe to RSS - Columns/Opinions