North Archives 08/14/06
| Editorial | News & Views
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Vermont's Pensions Funding Terror?
By Frank Mazur
"…. The Center for Security
Policy released a study in 2004 about "Terrorism Investments of the 50
States". It revealed that Twenty percent of Vermont's public pension
portfolio is in companies with ties to terrorists sponsoring states.
According to this report the Vermont State Retirement System has invested
$235 million in companies that have business operations in or with countries
that sponsor terrorism…." Frank Mazur is the Advisory Council Chairman
for FreedomWorks-Vermont, and is a former State Representative from South
Taxation Without Realization
by Martin Harris
"….This modern-day No Taxation
Without Representation would require that unrealized (paper gains) in property
value not be taxable, and that property Fair Market Value be determined
not by a questionable appraisal process but by an actual sale, at which
time a new FMV is set by the marketplace. California has been on this form
of NTWR since the mid-70's, and it works…." Martin Harris is the former
President of Vermont Citizens for Property Rights.
Pastime and America's Future
By Phil Kiver
"…. I shared my opinion
with one man who, grumbling under his breath, said the war is the reason
why schools don't have enough supplies. Now try as I might I couldn't resist
the opening he had left for me…. If not for the war on terror there would
be no schools like we know them today…." -- Phil Kiver is a soldier
and a journalist. He is author of "182 days in Iraq."
Underhanded Wilderness Grab of 2006
By John McClaughry
"….Unlike all the other
land in Vermont's Green Mountain National Forest, the uses of wilderness
areas are not reviewed and adjusted every 10-15 years as part of the Forest
Service's recurring planning process. No Vermonter, nor any Vermont legislature
or Governor, will ever again have any say over the use of the wilderness
areas. The wilderness restrictions and prohibitions are forever, until
the sun burns out…." -- John McClaughry is President of the Ethan Allen
Week in Review
developer says wind power is dead in Vermont
By The Associated Press,
August 10, 2006
"….The developer of a wind
project that has been rejected by the Vermont Public Service Board says
wind power has no future in Vermont right now. "Wind power in Vermont is
dead," Matthew Rubin said…."
City must borrow $5M
By Brent Curtis, Rutland
Herald, August 9, 2006
"Rutland officials are poised
to borrow $5 million to avoid going broke at the end of the month…."
tax hike blamed on flaw in law
By Gordon Dritschilo,
Rutland Herald, August 5, 2006
"….While town officials
say Goshen's actual per-pupil spending has essentially remained constant,
the formulas used to calculate the statewide property tax make it look
otherwise, and those formulas drove the town's homestead tax rate up roughly
"There's some crazy stuff
that gets in here," Rutland Northeast superintendent William Mathis said
dollars floated Union Station
By Kristi Ceccarossi,
Brattleboro Reformer, August 4
"BRATTLEBORO -- The town's
general fund is owed $190,000 for work done on Union Station, a project
sold to residents years ago as one that would come at no cost to taxpayers
or town coffers…. Federal funding that has been allocated for Union Station,
but not yet released to the town, will be used to pay back the general
fund, Remillard assured the board. But when that will happen is unclear….
Earlier this year, municipal staff discovered a $184,000 deficit in the
general fund and, later, a series of other shortfalls due to poor bookkeeping
and chronic overspending…."
Reformer Editorial, 8/8, Gouging
That these two pieces from the Brattleboro Reformer appeared in the same
paper, just days apart is quite illuminating about how liberal ideologues
think – or rather don't think. The news article illustrates how irate Brattleboro
residents are that a loan of their money was made, and it's not clear when
it will be paid back. They have every right to be upset. However, here
comes the Editorial, Gouging the Poor, excoriating banks for expecting
loans to be repaid, in time and in full! Yes, it's very easy to be liberal
and "compassionate" – with other people's money. I suspect the liberal
and compassionate citizens of Brattleboro will get "hyper-aggressive,"
and engage in some "predatory" practices themselves in order to protect
their own cash. Everyone else is just a big meanie.
group questions candidates
By Nancy Remsen, Burlington
Free Press, August 7, 2006
"….The Welch and Shepard
campaigns worked together to organize the conversations. Stern and Morrisseau
gratefully participated. Martha Rainville, Shepard's opponent in the Sept.
12 Republican primary, declined to attend. Organizers provided an empty
seat with her name on it for Sunday's event…."
blasts Welch, Rainville
By Sam Hemingway, Burlington
Free Press, August 11, 2006
"….Peter Welch does not
know how or when to stop growing government, and his appetite for more
government seems to never be satisfied." Shepard cited as examples Welch's
support for a health coverage program for Vermont's uninsured called Catamount
Health and for Act 68, an education finance reform law…. Shepard also…
said Rainville has not been specific enough on the issues and let herself
be "propped up" by other Republican leaders, including first lady Laura
Bush and Gov. Jim Douglas…."Martha has confused running a clean campaign
with a refusal to get her hands dirty at all," Shepard said. "You must
be willing to engage in a discussion of the issues."
re-election, Brock promises 'agenda of accountability'
By Ross Sneyd, AP, August
"State Auditor Randy Brock
promised an 'agenda of accountability' Wednesday if he is re-elected to
a second term. The 62-year-old Republican said he had succeeded in returning
the auditor's office to its central function as a government watchdog,
not a forum for scoring political points. Along the way, he said, his audits
have found shortcomings that have saved state government money and made
it more efficient. ... ' We found hundreds of thousands of dollars of waste,
fraud and abuse,' said Brock…."
ad criticizes Sanders for cutting U.S. intelligence budget
By Shay Totten, Vermont
Guardian, August 4, 2006
"In perhaps the most hard-hitting
ad yet of the 2006 campaign season, Republican senatorial hopeful Rich
Tarrant launched this week a three-minute Internet ad that criticizes his
chief opponent 's record of seeking cuts to U.S. intelligence budgets over
the past decade…. "I think most Vermonters will be surprised when the see
this web ad," said Tim Lennon, Tarrant's campaign spokesman. 'They are
probably not aware of these facts. [Sanders has] repeatedly voted for cutting
the budget of the intelligence community at the same time that Americans
are being attacked around the world….'"
Related: To view the
here. You must have Windows Media Player.
vetoes universal prekindergarten in state
By Associated Press,
August 5, 2006
"Governor Mitt Romney vetoed
a bill yesterday that would require the state to develop prekindergarten
education programs for every Massachusetts child age 2 to 4, saying the
proposal was too costly and unproven….'Before we create an expensive new
burden on Massachusetts taxpayers, one that could lead to future tax increases,
we ought to await the results of the pilot program, particularly as it
relates to the cost of a large scale expansion,' he said in a statement….'It's
another expensive entitlement which by some estimates will cost taxpayers
upwards of $1 billion a year. By passing this bill, the Legislature is
laying the groundwork for future tax increases.'"
Best Hope? Stop Imitating Democrats
By Kevin Hassett, Bloomberg,
"….The Republicans may be
behind, yet the race is far from over. Democrats have shown themselves
more than able to blow a lead in the past. A comeback is pretty easy to
plot. The first realization Republicans need to make is that America is
equally divided, and they can put themselves back in the middle of the
race if they can activate their conservative base. If they are losing now,
it is because their base is dispirited…."
speech is not corruption
By David Keating and
Carl Pope, The Hill
"…. Free speech is the way
to stop corruption when it threatens the system or to rid the system of
it where it is entrenched…. The specter of silencing opponents is a far
greater threat to citizen confidence in our system of government….Under
the 527 bill, for-profit corporations, like those that donate to the CED,
could continue to spend unlimited amounts on speech about politicians without
disclosing a cent to the public, and wealthy individuals could still spend
unlimited amounts to urge voters to support or defeat a candidate. How
is that fair? It is not…."
The authors of this article are not conservatives by any stretch. Keating
is executive director of the Club for Growth, and Pope is president of
the Sierra Club. They are, however, dead on in their analysis.
the Republicans Are Loving the Lieberman Loss
By Mike Allen, Time
"At a time when the GOP
should be back on its heels, Connecticut voters' rejection of a centrist
Senator gives the party a potentially powerful new weapon to use against
the Democrats this fall."
Williams Challenges the Establishment
By Ruben Navarrette,
August 13, 2006
"…. my friend has written
a provocative and immensely important book…. Titled Enough: The Phony
Leaders, Dead-End Movements and Culture of Failure That Are Undermining
Black America -- And What We Can Do About It, the book is a good read.
But it's also a good deed. And you can bet it won't go unpunished…. He's
particularly incensed that you don't have more black leaders getting in
the faces of black youth and telling them that -- in order to be a success
-- you have to stay in school, study hard, speak proper English, stay away
from crack and stop defining what it means to be authentically black as
someone who is acting like a thug and 'dressing like a convict."