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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Shawn Vestal: Empire lawsuit just one more reminder of surreal hospital pricing

At the heart of the lawsuit against the former owners of two Spokane hospitals is a reminder of the freaky, shady way hospitals set prices. They seem to just … make them up. Or maybe it’s more accurate to say they set them very, very high as a kind of opening bid in a negotiation. The way the pricing scheme works says a lot about the unholy and opaque alliance between health care providers and insurers, one that drives up costs with an elaborate game of hide-the-ball-from-the-patient.

Sue Lani Madsen: I-1552 puts in spotlight transgender agenda

It was the former drill sergeant on a February 2017 Heritage Foundation panel discussion who announced, “Biology isn’t bigotry, biology is the truth.” In her opinion, the transgender agenda is not about bathrooms, but about male violence and patriarchal domination of women. She doesn’t care if you call her a bigot.

Stephy Nobles-Beans: Remember who and what we honor on Resurrection Sunday

Billions of dollars are spent to celebrate Easter. Nearly 90 percent of Americans will buy Easter candy this year. More than 60 percent will buy Easter gifts. Almost 40 percent will buy Easter flowers, according to the National Retail Association. Considering those and other categories, Americans will spend $18.4 billion this year to celebrate Easter, the organization learned in a survey.

Test Drive: 2015 MINI Cooper

We're driving BMW's popular MINI Cooper this week, a front or AWD four-passenger sports car available in short and long wheelbase trims.

Carl Leubsdorf: Obama must pick a side: Ukraine or Russia

One of the high points in President George H.W. Bush’s largely successful foreign policy was his handling of that tumultuous period in the late 1980s and early 1990s when the Soviet Union collapsed and its former components emerged as independent states. His steady hand and restrained attitude helped to make it a peaceful evolution. But his one notable exception – his confusing 1991 support for both Ukrainian independence and close ties with the Soviet Union – echoes today in Soviet President Vladimir Putin’s callous, provocative challenge to Ukraine’s independence that began with a weekend military takeover of its Crimea region.

Israelis committed to peace

It’s good to start the year with encouraging news, so allow me to share what I think is a rare piece of encouraging and practical information for those who hope that one day there will be peace in the Middle East. News reports about Israel and about its conflict with Palestinians often come fraught with emotion and controversy. The headlines come filled with accusations, condemnations, charges and counter-charges that one side or the other is not serious about peace.

Rosa Brooks: Shoe throwing a welcome relief

If you’re going to throw something, better a shoe than a grenade or a bomb. I’m not defending Muntadhar al-Zeidi, the Iraqi journalist who flung both his shoes at President George W. Bush during a Baghdad news conference. However tempting the target, journalists are supposed to fling barbed words, not heavy objects.

Being adult means standing on own beliefs

Dear Carolyn: My boyfriend and I (both 24, college grads, employed full time) have been together 2 1/2 years. I invited him to move into my condo a year ago; our lifestyles have meshed well and our relationship has grown. The problem is, I haven’t told my parents we live together. They have met my boyfriend on more than one occasion, but treat him with indifference (read: don’t like him). I need a pep talk on breaking the news because I realize this cannot go on forever. My parents will not approve of our living together, but I am more concerned they will use their financial contributions to guilt me into doing what they want. (They contributed the down payment for my condo.)

When judging candidates, careful you don’t condemn

Now that the Democratic and Republican conventions are behind us, let the judgments begin! People from all sides of the media, the internet and from each side of Main Street are weighing in on each candidate for president and vice-president. Plus we have congressional candidates to judge.

An end to the column, but still more stories to tell

In the grand scheme of things what's one year? Depending on how well the year goes, 365 days can seem like a short or a long time. Good years fly by compared to the bad ones where every single day drags on like a poorly written sitcom. A year – almost to the day – is how long I've had this column and today you are reading the last one.

Fenton’s gone fishing

Father of John. Grandfather of Jess. That's how Fenton Roskelley has been identified in recent days when quoted by media about the younger men's conquest of Mount Everest. But by the time the two mountaineers returned to Spokane on Thursday night, the family patriarch had reached a summit of his own. On Thursday at 6 a.m., the venerable journalist filed his last outdoors column for The Spokesman-Review. It appears in today's sports section, ending a career that started in 1940.

Un-Cougs Emit A Very Fine Whine

Greetings from the south, sports fans. As a former resident of Spokane, and a loyal Cougars fan forced to migrate to Los Angeles for work, I find it uncomfortable, to say the least, to live and work in the same city limits that include our Pac-10 "friends" USC and UCLA. To complicate this further, the emergency room I work at in Santa Monica was taken over by UCLA! The coveted Rose Bowl berth secured by WSU in the Apple Cup sent this town shaking off the Richter scale. I thought it would help you have a better day to know how deeply these fans resent the fact we are going to the Rose Bowl, and they aren't. The word "if" has become the word of choice to begin 95 percent of all L.A. Times sports articles.