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 By Alan M. Schlein    Columns    August 1, 2020 

Trump is still pushing for ACA repeal

Amid the sharp political divides over its handling of the coronavirus pandemic and ongoing racial protests, the Trump administration continues its push to invalidate the Affordable Care Act (ACA) through the courts – a move that could prove to be...

 
 By Susan Stiles    Columns    August 1, 2020 

Virtual classes for older adults are here to stay

"I look forward to the calls each week." This comment was typical of the feedback that Peggy Schmidt received when she offered a virtual Aging Mastery "book club" to her rural constituents in...

 

Berries bring out the good in us

One morning in August 2012 I answered the ringing phone and heard "Hi, this is Kim. Gary and I have been picking blueberries in Hatcher Pass and we have more than we need. Could we bring you some?"...

 

Newspapers spread the word of Yukon gold

Glowing reports, like the following excerpt from the Aug. 8, 1897, edition of the New York World newspaper, helped fuel the stampede for gold along the Yukon River. "Mr. J. O. Hestwod, one of the...

 
 By Nick Thomas    Columns    August 1, 2020 

'Tinker Bell' ties the knot at 90

What could convince a 90-year-old actress – once a model for Disney animators creating the Tinker Bell character of 1953's "Peter Pan" – to abandon her West Coast home of nine decades and fly off...

 
 By Kenneth Kirk    Columns    August 1, 2020 

Putting away childish notions

You know how nice it is when you get a toy you have been wanting? If you don’t remember that far back, think about how a child’s eyes light up when it sees a toy under the Christmas tree. Or if...

 
 By Bob DeLaurentis    Columns    August 1, 2020 

TV slideshows, printer fix, beta software

Q. Is there a way to view personal photos on my television? A. A living room TV is a perfect venue to share your family photo collection, and there are choices to fit every budget. Many televisions built in the last decade can already display...

 

COVID-19 realities: Those here now and those likely coming soon

As the nation moves into whatever "reopening" the next phase of the COVID-19 challenge means, the pandemic's mark on American health will be a permanent one in good ways and unfortunate ones too. The...

 

Elder mental health in the time of COVID-19

COVID-19 is caused by something so small we cannot even see it, a virus known as SARS-CoV-2. This virus is causing illness and death throughout the world, and it seems to be targeting our elders especially hard. According to the CDC, 8 out of 10 de...

 

When bees and bears collide

During our first summer of trying to be self sufficient and live off the land, my husband, Gary, decided to keep honeybees. The year was 1974 and we lived 23½ miles out of Fairbanks on the...

 

Territorial days bring liquor smugglers

When the U. S. Army took over responsibility for administering Alaska in 1867, law enforcement found it had its hands full trying to stem the flow of liquor into the territory. Up until alcohol...

 
 By Nick Thomas    Columns    July 1, 2020

Fran Drescher and "The Nanny" reunion

Reassembling a dozen cast members from a popular 90s TV sitcom could pose a challenge for any network, much less an individual. But it was a task Fran Drescher relished. As the nasal-voiced star of th...

 
 By Kenneth Kirk    Columns    July 1, 2020

Estate planners and the consolation of philosophy

I can sum up the premise of today’s column in two words: philosophy matters. I’m not talking about Plato and Sartre and Descartes. I’m talking about the philosophy each of us brings to our...

 

Disinfecting phones; HBO; how to avoid data caps

Q. How do I disinfect a smartphone or tablet? A. Manufacturers usually publish guidelines for their products, and you should follow them. The most common advice is to avoid using too much liquid by applying it first to a clean, lint-free cloth. Use...

 

Social Security not keeping up with living costs

Editor’s note: This press statement was received on May 12, 2020. Social Security benefits have lost 30 percent of buying power since 2000, according to the latest “Social Security Loss of Buying Power” study released in May by The Senior...

 
 By Teresa Holt    Columns    June 1, 2020

COVID scams are high for veterans, military

According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), there have been over 20,300 COVID-19 complaints carrying an estimated $15.6 million in losses since the start of 2020. U.S. service members and veterans should take particular notice because these...

 

Combating social isolation for LGBT elders

SAGE, the world's largest and oldest organization dedicated to improving the lives of LGBT elders, has recently launched SAGEConnect, a program that matches LGBT elders with volunteer community...

 

Life and death in senior living facilities: More fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic

Getting older in America will never be the same, after the astonishing death toll in nursing homes and senior housing facilities has revealed just how flawed the nation’s system of care is. The fallout could completely collapse the nursing home...

 

Memories of Dad and a life well-lived

I sat listening as Dad recited verse after verse of "The Shooting of Dan McGrew" by Robert Service. During my month long visit with him in October 2005, I had been surprised and amazed several times....

 

Japanese invade Aleutian Islands in June, 1942

The remote islands of the Aleutian Chain, home to the Unangan people for more than 8,000 years, endured the first invasion on American soil since the War of 1812. On June 6, 1942, at around 10:30...

 
 By Nick Thomas    Columns    June 1, 2020

Kelly Stewart remembers dad, Jimmy Stewart

If you don't think Jimmy Stewart put the classic in 'classic movies,' consider these titles in which he starred: "It's a Wonderful Life," "The Philadelphia Story," "Mr. Smith Goes to Washington,"...

 
 By Kenneth Kirk    Columns    June 1, 2020

Advance Directives in the time of corona

Covid-19 is some scary stuff. It’s even more so if medical procedures make you nervous. By now we’ve all seen videos of people having long swabs stuck far up their noses, or a tube stuck down...

 

Selecting the best smartphone, Zoom privacy, and getting help

Q. Which mobile phone is the best value? A. Although many options exist in the smartphone market, one choice stands above all the others: The 2020 iPhone SE. I am so impressed by the new iPhone SE that I believe it should be the first phone anyone...

 
 By Teresa Holt    Columns    May 1, 2020

Social distancing shouldn't lead to social isolation

Even in the best of times, social isolation is a significant problem. In Alaska, 42,898 people over the age of 50 live alone and are at higher risk of social isolation, which is now magnified by the “social distancing” requirements across the...

 
 By Alan M. Schlein    Columns    May 1, 2020

The doctor is in on your nearest screen, hopefully.

With social distancing, depression, isolation and loneliness hitting the nation’s seniors particularly hard as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the federal government has made big changes to Medicare to help doctors reach patients easier witho...

 

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