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By D.G. Martin D.G. Martin hosts “North Carolina Bookwatch,” which airs Sundays at noon and Thursdays at 5 p.m. on UNC-TV. For more information or to view prior programs visit
  • Opening ever so slightly

    January 30, 2012 at 2:57 pm

    It is the kind of surprise for which every ambitious politician must be prepared: the unexpected decision by an incumbent elected official to retire. It is, my friend Jay Rivers told me, the kind of window of opportunity that opens ever so slightly and rarely. Be ready to decide quickly and pounce on the unexpected […]

  • Does time heal all wounds?

    January 23, 2012 at 5:34 pm

    Will John Edwards someday be the new Newt Gingrich? Where did this crazy question come from? To get the answer, read on. First, we should wrestle with the questions political experts have been stuttering over since Gingrich’s stunning upset of Mitt Romney in the South Carolina Republican presidential primary last weekend. How can a candidate […]

  • Learning about North Carolina from a Favorite Mystery Writer

    January 16, 2012 at 1:45 pm

    What is the best book I could read to learn about North Carolina? I get this question all the time from people who know about my interest in books about our state and those written by our great writers. My answer differs, depending on what kind of books my questioner likes to read. For instance, […]

  • Replacing elections with lotteries

    January 9, 2012 at 1:48 pm

    There has to be a better way. Some of us reached that conclusion after discussing the mess our congressional and legislative governing systems have come to. Winston Churchill said that democracy is the worst form of government “except for all those other forms that have been tried from time to time.” I wonder if he […]

  • Following Daniel Boone to the west

    January 3, 2012 at 1:38 am

    First there was Daniel Boone. Boone’s real exploits on America’s frontier made him a legend in a new country whose people were ever pushing westward, driving the boundaries of their nation to the Pacific and beyond. The history of our country’s push westward has never been easy to write, wrapped up as it is with […]

  • Who Teaches us How To Live – And Die?

    December 27, 2011 at 12:35 pm

    Alzheimer’s. Just the word scares you to death, doesn’t it? A few years ago, I saw an article that described and gave examples of a new mental test that can make a very reliable preliminary diagnosis of early onset Alzheimer’s. I read every word. I answered every question. I will tell you why in a […]

  • One more year of believing

    December 19, 2011 at 2:55 pm

    What does my brief appearance last month on stage in “The Murphey School Radio Show” have to do with Christmas memories? It is a little bit of a long story, starting with the confession that for a long time I wanted to be a ventriloquist like Edgar Bergen and his dummy, Charlie McCarthy. Okay, “The […]

  • Missing someone special at holiday time

    December 12, 2011 at 8:15 pm

    Harder, isn’t it, when the loss of a best friend or a loved one comes at holiday time? Maybe we already had a present picked out. And we are left wondering what gift for us might have been in the plans of our lost one. Harder still, isn’t it, when an accident or health crisis […]

  • Winter reading suggestions from North Carolina Bookwatch

    December 5, 2011 at 7:04 pm

    It is time to talk about books again. If you are looking for some special holiday gifts for some hard-to-give-to friends, I may have some help for you, thanks to UNC-TV’s North Carolina Bookwatch’s programs during the next few weeks. Here is a book for lovers of history or politics: One of North Carolina’s most […]

  • The ACC's first 20 years

    November 28, 2011 at 7:18 pm

     Just as the Atlantic Coast Conference (ACC) is poised to expand again, North Carolina’s basketball victory over South Carolina in Las Vegas last week brought back memories. They are memories of a time when the ACC was young and South Carolina was part of the small family. Well, sort of. That “sort of” story is […]