word on journalism
May 8, 2009
The Fat Lady Sings, Off-Key, Drools
At about this time every year, like
the swallows to Capistrano or the buzzards
to Hinckley, Ohio, the WORD migrates
to its summer musing grounds at the
sanitarium —St. Mumbles Home for
the Terminally Verbose.
The reason is clear, and never moreso
than as this season —the WORD's
13th —peters out.
It's been a fraught year of high palaver
and eye-popping transition, both good
and not-so-much. An interminable presidential
campaign saga finally did end, and in
extraordinary and historic fashion.
Meanwhile, the bottom and everything
that's below the bottom fell out of
the economy, with families, homes, entire
industries and —of particular
interest to WORDsters and the civic-minded
—dozens of daily newspapers ("I
don't so much mind that newspapers are
dying--it's watching them commit suicide
that pisses me off." --Molly Ivins).
. . all evaporating. What replaces them,
from the individual to the institutional
to the societal? Are we looking at a
future of in-depth Tweeting?
As any newsperson or firehorse knows,
it's hard to turn your back on day-to-day
catastrophe --we just have to look at
the car wreck. But even the most deranged
and driven need a rest. As philosopher
Lilly Tomlin once observed, "No
matter how cynical you become, it's
never enough to keep up."
So this morning, as a near-frost hovered
over northern Utah, the unmarked van
pulled into the driveway and the gentle,
soft-spoken men in the white coats rolled
the WORD out of bed and into a straitjacket
for the usual summer trip to St. Mumbles,
where the blathering one will be assigned
a hammock and fed soothing, healthy
foods --like tapioca, dog biscuits and
salmon --while recharging the essential
muscles of cynicism, outrage, sarcasm,
social engagement and high-mindedness,
in preparation for the next edition.
Summer well, friends.
up! Comment on the WORD at
and suggestions --printable and otherwise
--always welcome. "There are no
Smithfield's enjoying a growth spurt,
April 9, 2009 | SMITHFIELD -- Population
growth is booming here, says city recorder Dean Clegg, and
Smithfield has evolved from an agricultural community to much
more of a "bedroom community."
Clegg also said that there are a lot of
of people in the community that still depend on dairy or agriculture
for 100 percent of their income.
"We've expanded tremendously," he
said. The city has about 10,000 residents and that number
Clegg said the city is inviting people
to move there. He said the city has some of the lowest tax
rates in the state and the absolute lowest rates in Cache
City Manager James Gass said the city has
grown so fast that some of its roads are getting too congested.
Gass said he'd like to see a road built that would connect
from 400 West and about 400 North to Saddleback Road. He said
the proposed road would give drivers an alternate route from
the very busy 300 North.
Some residents are not too happy with the
city's population growth and the changes that might accompany
Jeff Gittins owns a dairy farm in the city
and said he doesn't like the idea of the connection of 400
West to Saddleback Road. "I'm not anxious to have an intersection
at the main gate of my dairy," said Gittins.
Gittins also expressed concern over the
idea of changing zoning laws for the land by his dairy. "It
seems to me a shame that we took 1 to 2 acre agricultural
areas and turned them into residential areas," he said. "We're
not favorable about this."
The Planning Commission and City Council
have changed some zoning laws because of the rapid population
growth. The booming population has caused a need for a new
elementary school, said the council. That's why they changed
zoning laws on a lot just east of 800 West from an agricultural
zone to a school zone.