Friday, July 31, 2015


  • Books | March 24, 2013

    Haidt defines social and political topics

    This is an important book to help us understand the divisive political and social climate in the country today. Several writers have tackled this topic in recent years but Haidt’s analysis is the most thorough, most research-based and most convincing I have read. Currently

  • Books | March 24, 2013

    Books to help grow knowledge and your garden


    Throughout the year, Manhattan Public Library is the recipient of a great many gifts. Often, donors will designate a determined amount to be spent and allow staff to make selections. Other times, the donors have specific titles in mind and provide lists of materials they

  • Books | March 24, 2013

    Short stories explain connection and need for human approval

    It’s undeniable that a strong female voice underscores Danielle Evans’ eight-story collection, Before You Suffocate Your Own Fool Self. In “Harvest,” Angel is a student at Columbia who watches white girls sell their eggs to fertility clinics. “Robert E. Lee Is Dead” follows Crystal,

  • Books | March 24, 2013

    African-American face of Civil War comes alive in collection of profiles

    While we can easily find any number of books about the white troops on both sides in the Civil War, information on the colored troops, as they were called, is harder to come by. “African American Faces of the Civil War: An Album” helps to

  • Local |Government, Politics | March 24, 2013

    Commission hopefuls talk about non-discrimination, vicious dogs and gun control

    In preparation for the city commission elections, the Mercury has asked each candidate to address several questions on various issues facing the city. These questions are designed to help voters understand each candidate’s position to facilitate the voter’s ability to make a more

  • March 24, 2013

    Bright colors and candy help make fun items for the home

    Easter 1.phatch

    There is no bigger declaration of spring than Easter. Its brightly colored eggs, light-green grasses, white bunnies and yellow chicks just scream “Spring is here!” But while I love Easter and all that comes with it, I often find Easter decor somewhat tacky and overdone.

  • Off The Beat | March 24, 2013

    Reading the lost volumes


    Part of me is in there with Erasmus, the 16th Century scholar said to have famously uttered, “When I get a little money, I buy books; and if any is left I buy food and clothes.” I do not have that kind of bibliotechish commitment,

  • March 24, 2013

    Saluting an Amazon rescue program

    Let’s go to the governor’s mansion at Cedar Crest in Topeka. A holiday reception is underway.  The governor and first lady are visiting with their guests. But this is not some fundraiser with big political donors – in fact, it’s not a

  • Gardening | March 24, 2013

    Caring for spring-season household plants


    Spring is here and time to get outside when possible. Before that consumes your interest, get your houseplants in order. They have been providing benefits while the great outdoors has slept. You will need them performing their tasks come fall. Repotting plants is suggested if

  • Editorials | March 24, 2013

    Stand by for job actions

    Civilian employees at military bases — including Fort Riley — have now essentially been put on short-term standby. That’s better than being given notice, although how much better is a matter for individual judgment. Congress’ passage of a bill Thursday funding government through the end of

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