North Archives - August 21, 2007
| Editorial | News & Views
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By Bruce Shields
The strategy of Anti-Modernists
in Vermont presently is to extract from the market a premium price to offset
their expense of foregoing technology. So long as this is a promotional
tactic to provide extra support from wealthier patrons, there is no social
harm -- it is equivalent to William Morris’s persuading the super rich
of his day to pay fabulous sums for handmade arts and crafts. The
vast majority of Victorian people were very happy to secure durable and
well made materials mass produced on machinery. But Vermont’s Anti-Modernists
seem determined also to outlaw the technology they eschew. To the
extent they are successful, they will reverse all the social, public health,
and economic benefits which have flowed to society at large as result of
our improvements in agricultural technology.
by Martin Harris
in the nature of politics, I suppose, for any chief executive officer,
in response to the publication of adverse news about his command, to send
forth one of his lieutenants to spin the publicity as favorably as possible.
Thus, when Forbes Magazine published yet another of those state-by-state
comparisons which show Vermont near the top of the pile in various aspects
of taxation and expenditure and near the bottom of the pile in various
indicators of business growth and capital formation, it wasn’t much of
a surprise when Montpelier reacted, predictably, in now-standard public-relations
fashion. The Eagle (and other newspapers) were quickly offered for publication
a "timely op-ed from Commerce and Community Development Director Kevin
Dorn providing his perspective on this ranking…"
By Steve Cable
the 1960’s, under familiar banners of "a step forward" and "personal freedoms,"
the United States changed dramatically. Younger generations sought to re-engineer
society, demolishing the societal self restraints of nearly 400 years of
American Christianized culture, especially in the area of sexual morality.
The result? A hedonistic explosion of sexual license, violence, and crime.
In the 21-year period from 1960 to 1981 – less than one generation
- profound changes occurred...
Political Process in Vermont
Political party organizations
are the engine that makes our political process work. The party system
in Vermont would work much better, however, if more people really understood
it. Every two years political parties re-organize and begin the process
of developing their philosophy.
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"[A]ppointing anyone firmly
opposed to same-sex marriage was not considered." – Speaker Gaye
Symington on appointing people to the commission to study whether to
bring same sex marriage to Vermont. (All 10 members of this supposedly
unbiased committee are supporters of same sex marriage)
"Above all, we must realize
that no arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is so formidable
as the will and moral courage of free men and women. It is a weapon our
adversaries in today’s world do not have." – Ronald Reagan
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Weekly News Round-Up
Start Riding A Bicycle
Why in Hell, one wonders,
can't one of the most robustly taxed states in the nation afford to keep
its roads and bridges in good repair? The state "needs" many things.
What it needs, above all, is a sound, pro-growth approach to the state's
economy and the sense to refrain from sticking its hands ever deeper into
the pockets of taxpayers who are more and more inclined to hit the road
-- potholes or not -- for places where they are allowed to keep enough
of what they earn to buy a house.
Symington v. Shumlin on
the Gas Tax
From Rob Roper, August 13,
SHE SAID: "We have
to have a number of issues back on the table. Certainly we need to consider
the revenues that support our infrastructure." (Valley
News, August 9, 2007) In an August 13 press release, Symington proposes,
"higher gas tax or other revenues, cutting general fund spending to send
more funds to the t[ransportation]-fund, more efficient design methods,
less spending on new road projects."
HE SAID: "Who
wants a gas tax. I don't want a damn gas tax."(Rutland Herald, 8/14/2007,
flares over gas tax). Earlier this year, noting that Vermont’s economy
could not support more that $5-20 million in new taxes, Shumlin said, "And
we don’t have it [tax capacity] anyway. We’re maxing out, mostly, the income
tax, the sales tax, the rooms-and-meals tax, the cigarette tax, the beer
tax — you name it, we’ve done it. (VDB,
March 20, 2007)
Leader Calls on Majority to Withdraw Gas Tax Proposal
Brattleboro Reformer, August
As everyone knows, it's not
easy to live in Vermont. The cost of living is high, but wages aren't.
People who decide to live here have more or less made the decision that
their quality of life is more important than making gobs of money. But
there gets to be a point of diminishing returns, and you can't eat scenery
or buy groceries with a mountain view. Web sites and mixers won't attract
workers. Jobs that pay a decent wage, housing that workers can afford and
a tax burden that is reasonable will attract workers. That will ultimately
be the way out of Vermont's supposed demographic crisis.
Approval Of The Sheffield Wind Farm
Caledonia Record Editorial,
August 10, 2007
More important, despite the
prevailing dogma of the environmentalists that proclaims wind energy the
natural savior of the globally warming world, the towers wouldn't exist
except for the huge tax subsidies their owners will enjoy. It's not about
electric power; it's about money. Next, the wind towers will produce power
for only about 11 percent of the time. The rest of the time, the wind isn't
there, and the power that isn't produced by them will have to be replaced
by current, allegedly inefficient, global-warming plants. Net benefit to
energy efficiency? None.
Members All Support Same-Sex Marriage
By Terri Hallenbeck, Burlington
Free Press, August 12, 2007
The Rev. Craig Benson, who
opposes same-sex marriage, called the panel a "kangaroo commission" and
said the makeup suggests the outcome is predetermined. … Symington said
appointing anyone firmly opposed to same-sex marriage was not considered,
because that would have been counterproductive.
marriage needs open debate, Burlington Free Press Editorial, August
If You Find Work ... And Affordable Housing
Confronted with the challenge
of luring young people who have left, back to Vermont, the administration,
of course, has a marketing
plan that is certain to convince these self-exiled young
people that chicken feathers, in reality, taste just like chicken salad.
# # #
Global War on Terrorism
By Nicole Sadighi, The American
Thinker, August 12, 2007
We now have a much better
picture of the Iranian people's political attitudes, thanks to a poll sponsored
by the Center for the Promotion
of Democracy and Human Rights. Popular discontent with the mullahs'
rule has created an opportunity for regime change, if we have the wit and
the will to exploit it.
By Daveed Gartenstein-Ross,
National Review Online, August 16, 2007
Regardless of setbacks on
the ground, al Qaeda could beat the U.S. in Iraq if American political
will collapses. Al Qaeda is keenly aware of the domestic political debate,
and will do all they can to force a withdrawal by escalating violence in
By Michael Ledeen, National
Review Online, August 14, 2007
Our military has increasing
moral authority in Iraq, but the same cannot be said for our government
at home. In fact, it’s in moral deficit because many Iraqis are increasingly
frightened we will abandon them to genocide. The Iraqis I speak with couldn’t
care less what is said from Washington but large numbers of them pay close
attention to what some Marine Gunny says, or what American battalion commanders
all over Iraq say. Some of our commanders could probably run for local
offices in Iraq, and win.
Marks on the Horizon
By Michael Yon, National
Review Online, August 13, 2007
There may be little progress
on political goals crafted in America, to meet American concerns, by politicians
resting on a 200+ year cushion of history. I wouldn’t be surprised if there
were no progress on that front. One thing I have come to know about Iraqis,
be they Shia, Sunni, Kurdish, or Christian, is they don’t respond well
to rules imposed from outside their acknowledged authorities.
But to say this means there
has been no political progress in Iraq in 2007 is patently absurd, completely
wrong and dangerously dismissive of the significant changes and improvements
happening all across Iraq. Whether or not Americans are seeing it on the
nightly news or reading it in their local papers, Iraqis are actively writing
their children’s history.
Petreaus Call For a 'Pullback?'
Rick Moran The American
Thinker August 15, 2007
The troops will be redeployed
to other areas where they would be needed. Certainly Petreaus has his eye
on the south, especially around Basra where rival Shia militias are engaged
in a low level civil war to establish their dominance in the area. Many
of those militias are offshoots of radical cleric Moqtada al-Sadr's JAM
force (Jaish Al Mahdi) and are hostile to Americans. Others belong to the
Badr Organization who might be expected to cooperate with American forces.
Establishing control in the south while breaking the power of some of the
Shia militias will help bring peace to Iraq.
Ralph Peters, The New York
Post, August 16, 2007
The media missed a big
one yesterday. They ran with the story that the Bush administration will
soon designate Iran's Revolutionary Guard Corps - a major troublemaker
in Iraq - as a terrorist organization. But they didn't look past the public-consumption
explanation that the move lets our government go after the Revolutionary
Guards' finances and the international companies that cut deals with Tehran's
thugs. The real reason for the move is to set up a legal basis for
airstrikes or special operations raids on the Guard's bases in Iran.
Qaeda's Travel Agent
Airport is a hub for terrorists.
By Joseph Lieberman, Opinion
Journal, August 20, 2007
Now the Damascus airport
is the point of entry into Iraq for most of the suicide bombers who are
killing innocent Iraqi citizens and American soldiers, and trying to break
America's will in this war. It is therefore time to demand that the Syrian
regime stop playing travel agent for al Qaeda in Iraq.
# # #
Part 7 of 'The Crisis
of the Republic'
Alan Keyes, Renew America,
Of all the articles in the
"Crisis of the Republic" series, this one is the most important. It deals
with the relationship between the sovereignty and democratic self-government
of our nation as a whole and the personal sovereignty and self-control
of individual citizens
Like Athletes, Compensated For Their Successful Performances
By John Berlau, Investor’s
Business Daily, August, 2007
Take the contrast in coverage
of the hiring of two well-known guys in the business and sports worlds:
executive Robert Nardelli at Chrysler and soccer star David Beckham with
the Los Angeles Galaxy. Nardelli's hiring this week as Chrysler's chairman
and CEO was largely panned, while coverage of the soccer team's acquiring
of Beckham has been largely laudatory. Yet if the business pages were to
include a career stats box, as the sports pages routinely do, readers would
discover that Nardelli and Beckham actually have common traits other than
being extremely well-paid. This would also explode the myth spread by politicians
and others critical of executive pay that athletes get "paid on performance"
and CEOs don't.
Flacks for Global Warming and Skirts Scientific Ethics
By James Lewis, The American
Thinker, August, 2007
out in these pages,
NASA has yet to own up fully to its historic error in misinterpreting US
surface temperatures to conform to the Global Warming hypothesis, as discovered
by Stephen McIntyre at ClimateAudit.org. This is not
the first major error discovered by McIntyre and his coworker, Canadian
economist Ross McKintrick, who previously uncovered the fatally flawed
"hockey stick" climate curve, used to justify Global Warming alarmism by
the 2001 Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
the Limits of Health Insurance
By Steven M. Warshawsky,
The American Thinker, August 17, 2007
Nevertheless, it is obvious
that this story reflects a larger agenda. The AP is using a human
tragedy -- the wife's murder -- to argue, however subtly, in favor of a
national health care system. I have no doubt that this story will
find its way into the speeches of those advocating "universal" or "single
payer" health insurance. After all, if such a system were in place,
they will claim, this terrible tragedy would not have occurred. Right?
Honestly, we can never know.
and Spending Reform Sparks Attention
By Ericka Andersen Human
Events, August 15, 2007
More than 3,500 American
citizens participated in a national town hall telephone conference call
with earmark reform leader Congressman Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) last night.
Hosted by American for Prosperity, a group dedicated to educating the public
on free markets and limited government, people from states across the country
were invited to dial in with their questions regarding pork-barrel spending
and responsible economic legislation.
For America: The 2008 Prospectus
The fight over who will be
representing EACH of us - individually, within our City or County or State
- is being won by the Liberal Progressive ideology of anger and hate and
vitriol and personal attack. They will continue to win so long as their
opposition believes sound ideas and good manners are the only tools of
American Statesmanship and Democracy.
For any who might be looking
for a constructive dialog filled with mutual respect and admiration for
the veracity of the other who has engaged you, take note: you will be deeply
disappointed. The National Debate over America's future has devolved in
to a screaming match, filled with expletives and disrespect, and the winner
is fast becoming he who screams loudest and longest...and has a better
handle on how to inject the f-bomb whenever a well-thought-out challenge
to an ideological premise is injected into the debate.
An anti-Western movement
touts dictators, advocates appeasement —and gains momentum
By Bruce Bawer, City Journal,
...we’re talking not about
a bunch of naive Quakers but about a movement of savvy, ambitious professionals
that is already comfortably ensconced at the United Nations, in the European
Union, and in many nongovernmental organizations.
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