Features

Bill Hammond, the president and CEO of the Texas Association of Business, issued a prediction this week. By 2040, if current trends continue in Texas, one-third of Texas adults would not have a high school diploma, Hammonds said. His concern strikes me as being very similar to the little boy who killed his parents and then pleaded for mercy before the judge on the grounds he was now an orphan.

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2012 has been a crazy year in presidential politics, from Rick Perry’s suggestion that Texas might secede from the Union to Rick Santorum railing against all forms of birth control to Newt Gingrich’s talk of an American colony on the moon by the end of his second term. While that is unlikely to occur in the foreseeable future – either a lunar colony or a Gingrich presidency – those bizarre notions might have been surpassed this week by the Republican nominee for president, former Gov. Mitt Romney, who appeared on the CBS News program 60 Minutes.

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Shangri La Botanical Gardens and Nature Center in Orange will celebrate the orchid, one of the most beautiful flowers in the world, from Oct. 6-13. At Shangri La, there will be daily tours of the Exhibition Greenhouses, classes and presentations highlighting the orchid, and a variety of orchids will also be available for purchase at Shangri La’s Garden Store.

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If you can be in Houston on Saturday, Sept. 29, take time to learn much more about the law. During the past 25 years, more than 50,000 people have learned about their legal rights and liabilities at a session of “The People’s Law School.” The largest and oldest program of its kind in the country, the People’s Law School is deigned to give you valuable information about the law that you can use to help avoid and resolve disputes. Best of all, it is absolutely free.

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Every fall, industry releases its new “year” of models; we see new cars, new appliances — and new security software. Many (but not all) PC, Mac and smart device security software publishers typically allow the user of a 2012 version to upgrade to the 2013 version, often at no charge, for the balance of the original license period.

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