North Archives - April 24, 2007
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Parents Back In Charge
By Robert Maynard
We should take notice of
two points here. First, "the provision of early care and pre-kindergarten
education through high-quality private providers" is FAR from being "one
of the most crucial elements supporting the strength and stability of the
system serving young children", in fact, it is viewed as a compromise.
Secondly, if the bill acknowledges that "Families have the primary responsibility
and right to nurture and provide for the early childhood development and
education of their children", why are their concerns not being addressed.
Not only does this bill fail to address the core concerns of parents and
families, it moves in a direction that is guaranteed to further aggravate
Number One - In Tax Burden
by John McClaughry
So why would a rational business
decision maker choose Vermont over New Hampshire (or Tennessee or Delaware)?
Does Vermont have enough of an edge in environmental quality, educational
quality, personal security, beautiful views, recreation, small town amenities
and personal security to win such a competition? Almost certainly not,
and when it comes to business opportunity, regulatory cost and risk, transportation
and telecommunications, and mandates and taxes, New Hampshire is a clear
By Bruce Shields
Vermont legislators have
recently boasted of shifting the property tax burden onto non-resident
property owners. That is just one kind of hidden tax on ordinary
Vermonters. Some hidden taxes are disguised as fees: for instance,
every corporation must now each year pay at least $250 to maintain its
registration within our state. The license to operate a truck, depending
on its capacity, may cost up to several thousand dollars annually.
Many truck operators are required to buy a weight permit in each town the
truck enters. These are just a few of the imposts faced by a basic
Vermont business -- every penny of which must be charged to that business’s
Has the Smartest Students?
By Robert Skinner
As linear logic goes, if
Vermont is the "highest taxed state" and paying the highest cost per pupil
then Vermont students should logically be the “smartest”. And that's the
story line here. As aforementioned and explained, the problem with these
wild claims is that they are based on unreliable statistical comparisons.
But hey - if you’re a liberal journalist or editor who favors Democrats
ruling Vermont and want to help them out, "Never let the facts get in the
way of a good story”.
# # #
"I want to talk about our
common responsibilities in the face of a common danger. The events of recent
weeks may have helped illuminate that challenge for some; but the dimensions
of its threat [advance of communism] have loomed large on the horizon for
many years.... Every newspaper now asks itself, with respect to every story:
"Is it news?’ All I suggest is that you add the question:
"Is it in the interest of the national security?".... I am
not asking your newspapers to support the Administration, but I am asking
your help in the tremendous task of informing and alerting the American
people. For I have complete confidence in the response and dedication of
our citizens whenever they are fully informed." --- President
John F. Kennedy in a speech to the American Newspaper Publishers
Association on April 27, 1961. Kennedy was alarmed that some newspapers
had published "details of the nation’s covert preparations to counter the
enemy’s covert operations."
"He [Osama Bin Ladin] offered
President Bush as the leader of the American people on three different
occasions a chance to convert to Islam saying 'I will be your guide'.
both of those things in Western context sound comical but both
of them are fulfilling requirements that the Prophet laid down for making
war - 'Warn them - offer them a chance to convert'. On the third
issue he found a very prominent Sheik in Saudi Arabia who wrote a treatise
on the use of weapons of mass destruction, especially nuclear weapons.
And it authorizes the Mujahideen to kill up to 10,000,000 Americans using
weapons. Now he's tied up any number of loose ends and I
think they are ready to attack us in the United States." --- Michael
a Former chief of the CIA Bin Ladin Unit from 1995 - 2004. His remarks
were made on Monday, April 16 on a PBS special entitled "Jihad: The Men
and the Ideas Behind Al Qaeda."
# # #
Weekly News Round-Up
school costs needs to remain the focus
Burlington Free Press Editorial,
April 15, 2007
The proposal to substitute
a flat income tax for the property tax as a way to pay for public schools
is more a sign of frustration over education costs than a real solution
to the problems that face the system. By changing the funding system at
this point, the task of controlling budgets becomes that much harder by
making it nearly impossible for ordinary taxpayers to keep track of their
share of school spending. The switch creates a diversion that is sure to
pull attention away from tackling spending.
By Geoffrey Norman, VermontTiger.com,
April 20, 2007
John McClaughry put together
a formidable group to consider the demographic future of Vermont and this
panel met yesterday in one of those imposing hearing rooms in the statehouse;
first to hear from Richard Heaps and then comment on his presentation.
sees unintended consequences in Vt. emissions limits
By Candace Page, Burlington
Free Press, April 20, 2007
Harrison's analysis was intended
to bolster automakers' argument that Vermont's rules could increase greenhouse
gas emissions, if some motorists drive more and others hold on to their
old, more polluting cars. "In my opinion, these regulations would reduce
new vehicle sales," he testified. "Overall the fleet of vehicles will become
older ... (and) there will be an increase in vehicle miles traveled in
Fred Thompson's not running, he should
By Cal Thomas, reprinted
in the Burlington Free Press, April 17, 2007
Thompson conveys Middle American,
common sense values. When he is asked a question, he doesn't sound as if
he's giving a poll-tested pabulum answer. Agree or not, his statements
spring from conviction.
may cause more smog, deaths
By Seth Borenstein, The
Associated Press, April 18, 2007
Switching from gasoline to
ethanol -- touted as a green alternative at the pump -- may create dirtier
air, causing slightly more smog-related deaths, a new study says.
will push Douglas budget cap
By Nancy Remsen, Burlington
Free Press, April 17, 2007
In an unexpected political
turn, Senate President Pro Tempore Peter Shumlin, D-Windham, will lead
an effort today to make the Douglas administration's school budget cap
the heart of the Senate's education cost-containment legislation.
Runoff Voting Is A Bad Idea
Caledonia Record Editorial,
April 19, 2007
Instant runoff voting (IRV)
is a bad idea whose time has not come, but Vermont's legislative leadership
is going to try to resurrect it.
from another planet
By Weiland Ross, Bennington
Banner, April 17, 2007
There was a time, not
too long ago, when comedians and others referred to Southern California
as the "national granola bowl — the land of flakes and nuts." No more.
This honor now belongs to the majority party in the Vermont House of Representatives.
Their unwillingness to deal with important matters that they could actually
solve, if they had the courage to do so, has converted the "veto-proof
majority" into a mandate for mediocrity. On the other hand, their willingness
to spend time and energy on matters that they can not actually solve has
even attracted "Doonesbury."
# # #
Under Fire: The Global War on Terrorism
Walid Phares on the Future of Jihad Part I (video)
Dr. Phares is an expert on
Jihadism, Terrorism and the clash of civilizations and author of The War
of Ideas. In this interview Dr. Phares discusses the influence that Middle
Eastern oil money is having on U.S. education.
Walid Phares on the Future of Jihad Part II (video)
In part II of this interview,
Dr Phares discusses the home grown jihadist movement.
Surge Is Working
The troops on the ground
in Iraq report on their progress themselves.
Petraeus Pull It Off?
A report on progress
in Baghdad, Baqubah, Ramadi, & Falluja.
by Max Boot, The Weekly
Until recently Ramadi, the
capital of Anbar province, was the most dangerous city in Iraq if not the
world. It was run by al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI), which had declared it the
capital of its Islamic State of Iraq. The Iraqi police presence was limited
to one police station, which the police were afraid to leave. Soldiers
and Marines engaged in heavy combat every day, losing hundreds of men since
2003, simply to avoid having insurgents overrun the government center and
close down Route Michigan, the main street. That began to change last year
when the 1st Brigade Combat Team of the 1st Armored Division expanded the
U.S. troop presence on the west side of town, losing almost 90 soldiers
in the process.
oil reserves could be twice as large
The Associated Press, on
Iraq’s oil reserves could
be nearly twice as large as previously estimated, containing more than
200 billion barrels, a new analysis of the war-torn country’s oil resources
found Saddam's WMD bunkers."
By Melanie Phillips, The
Spectator, April 19, 2007
It's a fair bet that you've
never heard of a guy called Dave Gaubatz. It's also a fair bet that you
think the hunt for weapons of mass destruction in Iraq has found absolutely
nothing, nada, zilch. Dave Gaubatz, however, says you could not be more
wrong. Saddam's WMD did exist. He should know because because he found
the sites... the American administration failed to act on his information,
'lost' his classified reports and is now doing everything it can to prevent
disclosure of the terrible fact that, through its own incompetence, it
allowed Saddam's WMD to end up in the hands of the very terrorist states
against whom it is so controversially at war. You may be tempted to dismiss
this as yet another dodgy claim from a warmongering lackey of the world
Zionist neocon conspiracy... If so, perhaps you might pause... Mr. Gaubitz
is not some marginal figure. He's pretty well as near to the horse's mouth
as you can get. Mr. Gaubitz told the ISG of his findings, and asked them
to come with heavy equipment to breach the concrete of the bunkers and
uncover their sealed contents.
Fred Thompson: People Power In Action
By J.B. Williams, The Chattanoogan.com
What we want is a real conservative
president, even if we have to go draft one ourselves. The fact that this
causes so much pain and anguish for so many career politicos accustomed
to dictating our political choices, is just a bonus. This is a very new
and exciting form of grassroots activism and it threatens to forever change
how politics will work in America from this moment forward. How did it
happen and where are we headed? This is a story for those who thought nobody
Danger of Environmentalism
By Michael S. Berliner,
The eco-logic Powerhouse, April 19, 2007
The expressed goal of environmentalism
is to prevent man from changing his environment, from intruding on nature.
That is why environmentalism is fundamentally anti-man. Intrusion is necessary
for human survival. Only by intrusion can man avoid pestilence and famine.
Only by intrusion can man control his life and project long-range goals.
Intrusion improves the environment, if by "environment" one means the surroundings
of man - the external material conditions of human life. Intrusion is a
requirement of human nature. But in the environmentalists' paean to "Nature,"
human nature is omitted. For environmentalism, the "natural" world is a
world without man. Man has no legitimate needs, but trees, ponds, and bacteria,
By Fred Thompson National
Virginia, like 39 other states,
allows citizens with training and legal permits to carry concealed weapons.
That means that Virginians regularly sit in movie theaters and eat in restaurants
among armed citizens. They walk, joke, and rub shoulders everyday with
people who responsibly carry firearms — and are far safer than they would
be in San Francisco, Oakland, Detroit, Chicago, New York City, or Washington,
D.C., where such permits are difficult or impossible to obtain.
About "Teacher Control"
by Bob Parks, Black
& Right, April 18, 2007
Maybe after years of being
taught that this was a messed up place, maybe that’s why America made Hui’s
sh|t list. The problem is, after the coming weeks of student psychiatric
privacy, gun control, campus security, rich and poor, and race debates,
one aspect of this story will never be touched.
by Mac Johnson, Human Events
Online, April 20, 2007
During the period from about
1960 to the fall of the Berlin wall at the end of 1989, the message of
the Red left was that Capitalism was exploiting the world, America was
destroying the world, and the only solution was for the international intelligentsia
to run the world. Contrast this with the much-improved message of the modern
Green left, which is… that Capitalism is exploiting the world, America
is destroying the world, and the only solution is for the international
intelligentsia to run the world.
By Quin Hillyer, Senior
Editor of The American Spectator, April 18, 2007
Fight back against the outrageous
"mainstream" media bias. Fight back against the Leninists who run much
of academia. Fight back against the baseless smears from two-bit cheap-shot
artists masquerading as Democratic U.S. senators. Fight back against Hollywood's
Court Upholds Partial Birth Abortion Ban Act
Fox News, April 18, 2007
The Supreme Court upheld
the nationwide ban on a controversial abortion procedure Wednesday, handing
abortion opponents the long-awaited victory they expected from a more conservative