One of the first things I learned when I left the world of general print journalism to become a truck writer/editor, is that truckers take extreme pleasure in arguing a point. In this issue there's an article featuring a bit of point and counterpoint from two notoriously forthright OOIDA board members. Ray Kasicki is from Cleveland, OH, and has been trucking for 31 years (as an owner-operator since 1988). He and wife Joan make their home in Cleveland, OH. Woody Chambers has been trucking for 37 years and for 35 of those years he's been an owner-operator. He and wife Paula live in Hoffman Estates, IL. Let me tell you a bit about how this article came about. It was inspired at the OOIDA spring board meeting. When nearly two dozen board members gather for a couple of days, what takes place, along with the business matters, is an absolute marathon of opinion, notions, theories and the frankest of commentary. In between official business meetings, some enriching exchanges take place. On page 48 of this issue, Ray and Woody go head to head in a good-natured discussion on a frequently hashed over topic: Is it time to buy a new truck … or keep the old one?
Also in this issue: Looming big on the horizon for the second half of 2001 – will the United States see the Bush administration succeed in implementing cross-border trucking per the provisions of NAFTA or will common sense prevail? See Todd Spencer's take on it in "Issues and Positions,” page 12. More details in Paul Cullen Jr.'s "Washington Insider.” An important measure has succeeded on the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives in regard to halting Mexican carriers from trucking all over the United States and is now working its way through the Senate. Want to know how your elected lawmaker voted in the U.S. House on this measure? It's all there on page 26, plus more on the Senate bill on page 13.
Good stories: On page 32, OOIDA Foundation announces the scholarship winners and features the winning essay by Janine Smeltz. For our member profile, we chose a remarkable person named Mark Oden. His story on page 30.
Your equipment: Paul Abelson completes "Cooling systems” with part two. Paul also kicks off another two-parter in LL'' special series, "Modern trucking techniques.” In this issue, Paul talks about idling your truck ("it's what truckers do”). How good are the alternatives to keeping you warm, cool and comfortable? Let him count the ways in part two, coming up in the October issue.
In June, OOIDA and Land Line were among the exhibitors at the International Trucking Show in Las Vegas. On page 66, technical editor Paul Abelson makes his picks of the coolest gadgets, products, devices and neat stuff from the ITS floor. Also, OOIDA member Suzanne Stempinski covered the truck show contest, bringing back the complete list of winners. Check out the photo on page 78-79. That's Suzanne and her husband Bob, leading the truck parade down the Strip, along with OOIDA member Darian Stephens.