Publisher's Column

When I look out my living room window over to the Marathon gas station on North Dixie Freeway, my eyes become glued to the gas prices, which for the past week have been stuck at $3.999 a gallon for regular unleaded. I cannot understand why they even bother with that third digit. Just get to four bucks. God knows it is not going to stop there, anyway. I feel sorry for all the hard-working middle class families in our community that bought those huge sport utility vehicles that now cost anywhere from $70 to $100 to gas up. I have a little car. Well, sort of. It's a gas hog.

Noting recent headlines touting the fact that summer jobs were very scarce for teenagers it was tempting to go out and see if anyone had any idea of what the real problem is. The people writing the articles gave no clue. While in Dennys restaurant here in New Smyrna Beach the other day, I asked Catherine O’Brian about the job market for teenagers.
She said it is "tough and business is slow.” When asked about how to fix the problem she responded, “We need to get more money into the economy.

One of my favorite tasks of managing this Web site is the interaction with the contributing writers, none of whom are paid for their services, but all of whom are so very talented. They all share one common theme: Love of community. The most recent additions are awesome thinkers: Michael Visconti, Catherine Forester and Irving Davidoff. They complement Tia McDonald, Darlene Vann, Rosi Karnes, Congressman Tom Feeney, Styron James, Lonny Russell, Kelly Azzinaro and Capt. Budd Neviaser. And finally, there is Peter Mallory, my mentor in many ways.

Our most recent InstaPoll asked: In light of the massive cuts in state aid for Volusia County Schools, should Superintendent Margaret Smith and the School Board members take pay cuts? Eighty-five percent of the 252 respondents voted yes.
While the poll is in no way scientific or accurate, I think this is a good idea.

It is only good leadership for the people at the top to suffer along with everyone else in the organization when things are tough.

It seems like many people in Southeast Volusia have a quick fix to the gasoline crisis. One popular solution being circulated by my friends Ken Taylor and Walter Glenn and others here in New Smyrna Beach involves boycotting Exxon. According to their theory, this would force Exxon to drop their price and then everyone else would have to do likewise.
The problem with the gas prices is caused by a number of factors none of which can be addressed easily.

First, China and India have developed a hunger for oil which affects the whole world market.

There is hardly a person who has not been hit with the desire to make a speech to a graduating class to share their infinite wisdom with the graduates. Since Sunday was the day we recognize our mothers, here is some of the wisdom I received from my mom that might be most useful -- including but not limited to the benefits and pitfalls of marriage, how to manage personal finances and how to deal with others. Plus some advice on petty thieves and whiners.
One of Mother’s pet peeves was watching a movie in which the hero saves the heroine and then they get married and live happily ever after.

It would appear that some New Smyrna Beach residents want it both ways. First they wanted to take advantage of the depressed real estate prices that pertain to property close to the New Smyrna Beach Municipal Airport when they bought their property. Now, they want to do away with the airport so that nasty noise will go away and their property values will go up.
No one can blame residents if they dislike the sound of airplane engines. However, the airport was built in World War II to train the “greatest generation” how to fly to protect the country from the Japanese and Germans.

My mother taught me how to read and write when I was 3 years old. She raised seven of us while my father worked two jobs. She gave me the foundation for what would be a career in journalism. I lost my mother nearly five years ago, but what she instilled in me endures. For those of you who have a mother, be thankful.
I know I am, even though she's gone.

When you look at our Home page today, no doubt you will see that we have added nine pages and dozens of elements to bring to 21 pages and nearly 100 click-able items on the Home page alone. This is a tremendous undertaking considering we launched the site April 11. is the leading news provider for Southeast Volusia where local news is emphasized 24/7 in a multi-media format (word, video and audio). News of the world is brought home to you, making this a one-stop media shop.

Rural Pennsylvanians may be bitter as portrayed by Barack Obama, but we in Southeast Volusia are clearly bitten. At least not snake bitten. Instead, try shark bitten. For the fifth time in the past several weeks, a human being has been bitten by a shark. And if man and beast can co-exist, perhaps we can learn to put our petty not-in-my-backyard squabbles aside such as with the NSB airport. They say you're more likely to get struck by lightning than by a shark. After all, some 10 million of us hit the beaches here in Volusia County.