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GOOD MORNING: Avoiding Christmas music

Anyone can testify to the fact that I am the furthest thing from a Grinch. The holidays come around and usually I tense with anticipation and excitement. I visit stores just to look at the gorgeous decorations and start window shopping for my friends and family, and usually the sooner these glorious traditions of mine can start, the better.

MARK NOON: How Charlie Brown became a Christmas tradition

The final cut of “A Charlie Brown Christmas” was first shown in early December 1965 in California, to the staff that had hustled to meet a demanding six-month deadline. After the credits finished rolling over “Hark! The Herald Angels Sing,” the crew was silent, unsure if the show’s many innovations worked.

LARRY PHILLIPS: House committee getting down to business

Interim charges are the issues that the Speaker asks committees to study during the time between regular legislative sessions in order to make recommendations for legislation for the following legislative session. This week I will discuss the interim charges recently issued to the House Committee on Business & Industry. The committee studies many areas pertaining to the regulation of business and industry in Texas. Of particular interest to many is the regulation of worker’s compensation system, which compensates employees injured on the job.

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EDITOR’S NOTE: Give thanks

A favorite time of year has arrived for many. It’s a time for family, cheerful spirits and, well, thanksgiving. I suspect I’m like many of you who find yourself a little bit more patient with your fellow man this time of year, and, considering the events of recent weeks, the arrival of the holiday season couldn’t be more welcomed.

GOOD MORNING: My Thanksgiving last year was special

When I think of my favorite holidays, Thanksgiving is not generally one of them. I am thankful everyday, but Thanksgiving is mainly about food. Thanksgiving is like the appetizer before Christmas. Christmas is when we have the best foods and when family time really comes back to town.

Why not draw straws? Elections are all random

I’ll cheerfully admit that until last weekend I had no idea that Mississippi decides tied elections by drawing straws — much less that other states flip a coin. The only comparable version of planned randomness I’d heard of was the ancient Greek practice of choosing annual leaders by lottery.

Argentina’s Macri won’t be Venezuela’s friend

Fresh off a bruising campaign that toppled a political dynasty and split Argentina in two, incoming president Mauricio Macri was blunt at a Monday news conference. “If I said I’d do it, we’ll do it,” he declared when asked if he planned to make good on his campaign promise to bring Venezuela’s autocratic regime to task for violating human rights and trampling democracy.

CAL THOMAS: Terrorists as ‘tourists’

President Obama has put a new twist on the Islamic invasion now taking place across Europe and the United States. Speaking to reporters last week during his visit to the Philippines, the president compared Syrian refugees to “tourists,” saying they are no bigger a threat than people who come to sightsee and visit attractions.