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  1. DEAN FLOREZ: Hacking into a sausage factory

    Over the past year, code academies have proliferated the higher education and vocational landscape, posing big questions on the value of a formal four-year computer science degree and answering consumer demand with a savvy proposition:...

  2. DONNA CARPENTER: How will regional transportation change over the next 26 years?

    When it comes to transportation projects, the future in California isn't going to look like the past. Ever-widening highways and streets, one person-per-car traveling to and from work each day, empty buses, hardly a bicyclist or...

  3. HAROLD PEASE: Yes, Social Security can be saved, and with better benefits to boot

    With our national debt growing by $3 billion a day and Congress giving up offering any real solutions, we are a speeding train heading for a cliff. Most pretend the problem is not real or will just go away. Almost no one is ready for...

  4. SEAN KIERNAN: Senate's oil bill would benefit the greater good here in Calif.

    Kern County Supervisor David Couch's op-ed ("Bill could harm Californians, especially here in Kern County," March 17) is the latest among a series of media publications attempting to persuade the public that an oil-severance tax (Senate...

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    ROBERT PRICE: Imperfection of 'Cesar Chavez' would've suited the man himself

    The list of landmarks named for labor leader Cesar Chavez is a long one. In California alone at least 22 schools, six libraries, seven streets and 10 parks are named for the man. That's three times as many civic tributes in this state as...

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    SOUND OFF: About that black cat pictured at the crime scene

    Reader: Terrible shooting death, page three ("Man dies in shooting with sheriff's deputies in Oildale," March 28), and a photo of a black cat crossing the path. Hmm. That aside -- by the way, Casey Christie photos are a wonderful asset to...

  7. GREG LASKOWSKI: There's no substitute for science

    I take issue with a letter writer's response to a Californian editorial, "Fear-mongering: Blaming fracking for quake" (March 23). The writer makes his case against fracking ("Kern should follow suit," March 25) and attributes this...

  8. AMY BENNETT: We need Congress to fix the Freedom of Information Act

    The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) is a critical law for making sure the public has a fighting chance to get copies of records the government might not want it to see. For more than 40 years, people have used the FOIA to uncover...

  9. JACK TURNBULL: History tells us that borrowing money is not our only option

    It is time to again emphasize that the President of the United States and the two political parties running our federal, state, and local governments, believe they are forced to borrow money if they are to fund their operations. Nothing is...

  10. JEFF HEINLE: When villagers fight, we fail to see who the monster really is

    Don't you just love Frankenstein? A scientist creates a horrible, grotesque monster that was hated by the villagers because he was different. Remember that old, black-and-white scene from the movie where the villagers have their pitch...

  11. PAMELA WILDERMUTH: Hobby Lobby, Obamacare set to square off in nation's high court

    Get your popcorn ready. Arguments in Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. v. Sibelius are scheduled to be heard by the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday. What will happen? Are corporations people with religious rights? Can a for-profit company force...

  12. RANDAL BEEMAN: Dust Bowl silver linings

    Like "awesome" and "epic," "iconic" is a word that our society has devalued due to overuse. Yet when discussing the Great Depression and the significance of "The Grapes of Wrath" to that period, nearly the entire experience of the Great...

  13. WADE EAGLETON: Burger flippers, regional pilots and increasing minimum wage

    President Obama has advocated raising the minimum wage to more than $10 per hour. And, by executive order, some federal employees are now receiving the boost in pay. However, others feel such measures could threaten business and private...

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