Don C. Brunell

Remember 1993

Twenty-five years ago, business took a beating in Olympia. The swing to the left in the 1992 general election was swift and potent. It drove higher costs to employers and more government regulations.

Remembering Ed Carlson, Vietnam POW

Since last Veteran’s Day, Ken Burns’ in-depth documentary on the Vietnam War has aired. It is a powerful reminder of an unpopular war in which many “baby boomers” fought and died.

Rural prosperity essential to Washington

While Seattle is growing rapidly, our rural areas continue to struggle. They don’t have the corporate giants such as Amazon, Microsoft and Boeing creating jobs and economic opportunities. Farms are predominantly family-owned.

Expanded Panama Canal among challenges for Washington Ports

The $5.4 billion spent to expand the Panama Canal is paying off for East Coast and Gulf of Mexico seaports; however, it is putting more pressure on the Northwest to remain competitive.

Players taking a knee hurting the NFL | Don Brunell

On a recent Saturday afternoon in Portland, a young woman stepped onto the playing field at the beginning of the University of Montana vs Portland State football game and started singing our national anthem. She immediately drew a blank on the words and briefly stopped, but as she started apologizing, the fans spontaneously took up the singing.

New metal collecting machine may clean up contaminated waters

There is a new machine being tested in Montana which could decontaminate toxic mine tailings while recovering valuable precious minerals for everyday use.

Impact of Hirst decision must be address

In Washington, the legislative stalemate over permitting new household wells and the state’s construction budget has not only delayed needed funding for public projects, but triggered yet another salvo in the wider conflict over future supplies of fresh water for people, fish and farms.

Mitigate massive wildfire danger | Don Brunell

At last count firefighters were battling 82 major wildfires in 10 western states. The fires have already scorched 2,300 square miles of forests and range lands, dislocated thousands of people, and burned hundreds of homes and buildings.

Silver linings to Hurricane Harvey | Don Brunell

All of the things that went wrong in New Orleans with Hurricane Katrina in 2005, appear to have been corrected with Houston’s recent Hurricane Harvey. Chalk it up to a series of important lessons learned.

Dan Evans would serve America well | Don Brunell

Recently, family, friends and dignitaries gathered at Hurricane Ridge near Port Angeles to celebrate the designation of the Daniel J. Evans Wilderness at Olympic National Park honoring Washington’s distinguished three-term governor and U.S. Senator.

Massive fires increasing wood prices | Don Brunell

Massive forest fires in western parts of Canada and the U.S. are not only choking us with layers of smoke, but are cutting off lumber supplies around our country.

Sudden deaths took a trio of state’s business and Ag leaders | Don Brunell

So far this year, a trio of unexpected deaths has shocked Washington business and agriculture. Melanie Dressel, Ron Reimann and Jeff Brotman leave behind large shoes to fill.

Race to toll likely to clip Washington drivers

In 2014, President Barrack Obama opened the door for states to collect tolls on interstate highways. This year Oregon lawmakers, much to the chagrin of Washington drivers and truckers, unilaterally took advantage of the new funding opportunity.

LNG better for maritime and people | Don Brunell

There is an old saying: Don’t let the perfect get in the way of the good! That is important to remember when it comes to improving our air quality.

Abundant natural gas is giant step toward energy independence | Don Brunell

In the last half century, Americans yearned for energy independence. We were tired of being held captive by foreign governments—some of which continue to be hostile toward the United States and our way of life.

Searching for the words that unite us | Don Brunell

Two days before last year’s presidential election, Frank Luntz walked away from a CBS 60 Minutes focus group leaving people uncontrollably screaming at one another. He couldn’t stop it. Nobody could.

Refocusing climate debate to practical solutions

Debating whether it was wrong for President Trump to pull the United States out of the Paris climate accord negotiations is never ending.

Texan is flush with transportation cash

In the last decade, there has been a highway construction boom in Texas. On the other hand, lawmakers in Olympia still scramble to fund road maintenance.

Time to ax Amtrak passenger service to Chicago

Last month, a Wall Street Journal editorial hit the nail on the head recommending Amtrak focus its limited funds on shorter more heavily traveled routes between Washington, D.C., and Boston.

Customer satisfaction is one job

It may take United Airlines years to overcome the public relations nightmare of a doctor being dragged off an overbooked flight by Chicago police. That one incident not only sparked costly litigation, but could well impact the company’s bottom line and expansion plans.