North Archives - September 04, 2007
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Education an Entitlement?
From this it is logical to
conclude that "learning" was more the responsibility of religious bodies
than the state and that the state's role was to encourage and protect them
"in the enjoyment of the privileges, immunities, and estates," as
a way of supporting them in carrying out their functions. Such encouragement
is not a moral "ought", but a legal "shall". How we get from the
state mandate to encourage religious societies in the advancement of religion
and learning (note that the two were joined together), to the sate usurping
that role, is hard to fathom when we read the document in context.
The whole section lumped the discouragement of vice, the encouragement
of virtue, schools and religious activity in the same context and suggested
that it was religious societies which fulfilled this function and that
the state supported that function by granting privileges to such organizations.
(Tax breaks, etc.)
of Free Trade
By Bruce Shields
The cost of free trade is
often very visible: a closed factory, a vacant warehouse, and long term
employees forced frequently late in their working career to seek new work.
The benefit is not so easy to see: poor people are better able to afford
the necessaries of life. Saving a dollar a day on clothing is not
so easy to run on the evening news as a crane lifting the machines out
of a factory. But in aggregate, that benefit far outweighs the pain.
Some politicians, like some mentally ill people, seem able only to focus
on negative interpretations of events. Society at large needs to
hold to a wider view.
the E-Court Pulled a 180
Dooley doubtless knew little or nothing of actual Supreme Court flip flops,
either those of the past (whereby slavery went from Constitutional and
legal to not) or those of the future, (whereby the separate-but-equal formula
of Plessy v Ferguson would be reversed in Brown v. Board of Education,
but his lack of scholarship didn’t prevent him from correctly identifying
a political fact: as general public attitudes change, the legal and regulatory
systems crawfish energetically to stay in line and pretend to be legally
precise about it. It’s not that hard to cite some Vermont examples proving
# # #
"There are American officials
who consider Iraq as if it were one of their villages, for example Hillary
Clinton. This is severe interference in our domestic affairs." --Iraqi
Prime Minister Nuri al-Malik
# # #
Weekly News Round-Up
Like Healthcare, Is Not an Entitlement
However, declaring the likeness
of education and health care does little to address the real question of
where these supposed entitlements originate from. Certainly not in the
US Constitution which is silent on both issues. The claim that education
is an entitlement is simply not supported by the facts (although the Vt
Supreme Court seems to think
otherwise). To argue that health care is an entitlement simply
because states choose to provide education is non sequitur.
readings on climate change
I'm sure the climate change
issue will return during the next legislative session. The players
are still there and the Governor's
Commission on Climate Change will have issued its report. A few
good articles on the subject have recently crossed my desk (electronically
speaking, of course).
violates Vermont’s "Open Government and Ethics" laws
August 31, 2007
House Ways & Means Chairman,
Michael Obuchowski (D-Rockingham) dismissed questions about the closed-door
practices of a subcommittee discussing an income tax increase.... "On
critical issues such as property tax reform and raising the income tax,
Vermonters' rights under the law to participate and be informed must to
be respected. When they are not, it undermines the credibility of our legislature,"
said Rob Roper.
Panel under fire for closed door meetings
growers turn to machinery
By Clarke Canfield, The
A decade ago, about 20 percent
of Maine's 60,000 acres of blueberry fields were harvested by mechanical
means. Today, it's about 80 percent as growers discover that it's cheaper
to replace hand-pickers with more efficient machinery.
Caledonian Record Editorial
Tuesday August 28, 2007
What popped our eyes was
this inclusion in Grant's article: "The intention of a prebate, which is
technically called a 'a property tax adjustment,' is to assist people who
have an annual household income of $106,000 or less, according to the department."
Could it possibly be true that a household that enjoys an income of $2,038
a week qualifies the homeowner for a prebate or rebate? As eye-popping
as that number is, it is apparently so because the tax department confirms
it. That is what "income sensitivity" has come to.
Glimpse Inside the Pork Barrel
Caledonian Record Editorial,
August 30, 2007
There is a bill that emerged
from the United States Senate this year that contains huge money in earmarks
that fund pork barrel projects of virtually all of the senators. The bill
is called the Senate Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and
Related Agencies (THUD) Act. It contains $123.5 million for 285 pork projects.
Here is a list, compiled by Citizens Against Public Waste, of the most
egregious projects and who got them for whom. Read them and weep.
# # #
Global War on Terrorism
Season of Hope in Iraq
By Michael Gerson, The Washington
Post, August 31, 2007
During their summer vacation,
Americans discovered that Gen. David
Petraeus doesn't take one. And his energy and urgency have
shifted the Iraq
debate in some fundamental ways. A few months ago, it was the received
wisdom that Iraq was in the midst of a rapidly escalating civil war. That
claim is no longer plausible. While the level of violence is still unacceptably
high, the surge has disrupted the cycle of escalation and proved that progress
News, But Not For Democrats
Myth Of A Resurgent Taliban
From Investor's Business
Daily, August 31, 2007
The steady demise of key
Taliban leaders belies the drumbeat of a Taliban resurgence. From the Battle
of the Bulge to the Tet offensive, our defeated enemies have often gone
out in a blaze of glory.
Genocide in Iran
By Amil Imani, Amilimani.com
The world’s most notorious
state exponent of anti-Semitism, the Islamic Republic of Iran, is on a
path to uproot, not only all that are perceived as civilized, but to annihilate
the greatest threat to its existence, the Iranian people. The mullahs and
their mercenaries are wasting precious human life in order to maintain
themselves in power through terrorizing the population.
By Robert Spencer, Human
Events, August 29, 2007
It has been a bad week for
the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR). The group that has successfully
presented itself as a Muslim civil rights group is seeing a radically different
portrayal of its motives and goals come to light in the Holy Land Foundation
terror charity trial in Dallas. The
Associated Press reported Monday that prosecutors have produced documents
establishing that CAIR was part of the Muslim
Brotherhood’s Palestine Committee. Mousa Abu Marzook, who once served
as chairman of the Hamas Political Bureau, led this group. CAIR co-founder
Nihad Awad has been placed at a meeting of Hamas supporters -- which shouldn’t
surprise anyone, since in 1994, the year CAIR was founded, Awad
stated publicly, "I am in support of the Hamas movement."
By Jeff Emanuel, The American
Thinker, August 31, 2007
Iranian President Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad Tuesday said
that "a huge power vacuum" was imminent in Iraq and promised that Iran
would be ready to fill it. This plainly-stated desire by the totalitarian
regime in Tehran to overtly interfere in the affairs of a sovereign nation
-- while simultaneously accusing the US of doing so, despite the fact that
coalition forces are still present in Iraq at official invitation of that
nation's sovereign government -- should come as no surprise to any who
have followed the course of the Iraq war (and postwar) to this point.
Life Returns to Mean
By Ralph Peters, The New
York Post, August 29, 2007
IT may be the world's ugliest
ice cream, a random mix of a half-dozen melting flavors swirled together
in a chaos of chemical colors. But it's a hit at the Yarmouk market in
the heart of Baghdad. Much of the city - though certainly not all - is
coming back to life. The optimism of the neighborhood entrepreneur who
opened that ice-cream shop may be a better indicator of progress than another
empty promise from Iraq's government.
And it's a good sign when
a U.S. security patrol can make an ice-cream stop.
# # #
Part 2 of 'The Crisis
of the Republic'
By Alan Keyes, Renew America,
Because our understanding
of politics has been corrupted, we cannot discuss what threatens our political
sovereignty until we free ourselves from the effects of that corruption.
It's as if we are looking at our political life through lenses or panes
of glass that obscure and distort everything we see, including the nature
of our own actions.
in a Global Economy (pdf)
The Truth about U.S.
Manufacturing and Trade
By Daniel Ikenson, Cato
Reports of the death of U.S.
manufacturing have been greatly exaggerated. Since the depth of the manufacturing
recession in 2002, the sector as a whole has experienced robust and sustained
output, revenue, and profit growth. The year 2006 was a record year for
output, revenues, profits, profit rates, and return on investment in the
manufacturing sector. And despite all the stories about the erosion of
U.S. manufacturing primacy, the United States remains the world’s most
prolific manufacturer—producing two and a half times more output than those
vaunted Chinese factories in 2006.
Yet, the rhetoric on Capitol
Hill and on the presidential campaign trail about a declining manufacturing
sector is reaching a fevered pitch. Policymakers point repeatedly to the
loss of 3 million manufacturing jobs as evidence of impending doom, even
though those acute losses occurred between 2000 and 2003, and job decline
in manufacturing has leveled off to historic averages.
by Paul Driessen, American
Conservative Union Foundation
Legislators should be working
to ensure that markets work properly, so that we have abundant, reliable,
affordable energy – to meet the needs of a growing population and technologies
that safeguard and improve our lives. Our economy’s digital infrastructure
alone accounts for more than 10% of our electricity demand. Data centers
are voracious energy consumers. Unfortunately, legislative bills could
more accurately be called anti-energy and even anti-environment. They may
reflect gratitude for special interests that get legislators elected, but
they hardly serve the interests of consumers or the nation.
Left Fakes Right
By James Lewis, The American
Thinker, August 29, 2007
After six long years of pandering
to the primates of Kos and Huffpo, the Democrats have suddenly
discovered the War on Terror. Didn't you notice? That's because they
didn't tell anybody. It's a stealthy flip, right in the middle of the dog
days of August when nobody is paying attention. The Party Line just flipped.
Insurance Stymied by Federal Government
New Report Explains
How Government Retarded Development of Private Flood Insurance
By CEI Staff, August 23,
Floods destroy thousands
of homes each year and, America’s primary way of paying for them, The National
Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), has enormous problems. The program adds
billions to the national debt each year and, quite often, pays to rebuild
flood-prone houses and businesses time and again.
Troops on the homefront
By Michelle Malkin, National
Review Online, August 29, 2007
Earlier this year, I reported
on a new, nonpartisan movement that arose to challenge the surrender lobby.
On a bitter cold weekend in March, the Gathering of Eagles brought together
veterans, families of active-duty servicemen and servicewomen, Rolling
Thunder members, military bloggers and their grassroots supporters to raise
their pro-troops, pro-mission voices. I interviewed Eagles who flew in
from San Francisco, rode motorcycles south from Georgia, drove all night
from Boston, and trekked in caravans from coast to coast to answer ANSWER.
At the crack of dawn, facing biting winds and contemptuous taunts, tens
of thousands of Eagles stood guard over war memorials threatened by antiwar
anarchists and lined the streets where bongo drum-beating retreatists marched.
The Gathering of Eagles turnout
was unprecedented. The Cindy Sheehanistas and socialist rabble-rousers
had never been met and matched with such force. Now, the Eagles are organizing
a return to Washington at a historic moment in the global war against jihad.
Gen. David Petraeus, top commander in Iraq, and U.S. Ambassador to Iraq
Ryan Crocker are expected to testify before the Senate on Sept. 11.
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