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Politically Thinking: State economy shifting with times

Posted on January 20, 2011 |
By Eric L. Davis



Last week, the Legislature’s consulting economist, Tom Kavet, presented his semi-annual revenue forecast and analysis of the Vermont economy to Gov. Shumlin and legislative leaders. Kavet’s reports are important events in Montpelier, because they identify issues that are likely to be on the Legislature’s agenda in the next session.

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Between the Lines: The tracks of John Boehner's tears

Posted on January 20, 2011 |
By Gregory Dennis



Pity the poor liberals. They spent decades convincing Americans that it was a good thing for women to be strong, high-profile leaders. So who comes along and grabs the mantle of the high-profile political woman? Not a liberal, but the dreaded Sarah Palin.

Then after years of creating space for men to be more in touch with their feelings, liberals have to watch new Speaker of the House John Boehner — he of the tough-guy politics and country club demeanor — become the most emotive man in public life.

It’s enough to make progressives want to go out and burn a bra.

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Guest Editorial: Giving back on MLK Day

Posted on January 17, 2011 |
By Matt Dunne



Each year on Dr. King’s birthday, I find myself reflecting on his message of equality and giving back. This year, as Americans grapple with the tragic events of Jan. 8 in Arizona, including the attempted assassination of Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, my perspective on the holiday has taken a different focus.

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Editorial: Excitement in ag policy?!

Posted on January 13, 2011 |
By Angelo S. Lynn



What’s exciting in agricultural policy today is the culminating effort to put into action former Rep. Chris Bray’s, D-New Haven, “farm to plate” initiative.

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Editorial: A warning shot for the GOP

Posted on January 13, 2011 |
By Angelo S. Lynn



If Republicans don’t think the calls to violence from Republican politicians — ranging from Sarah Palin to Tea Party favorite Rep. Michele Bachman, R-Minnesota — have a caustic and negative effect on the nation’s political discourse, perhaps they should tune into what just happened among a handful of Republican party officials there: they resigned out of fear of their personal lives and because of how rightwing Tea Party members were treating moderate Republicans.

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Clippings: New efforts bring risks and lessons

Posted on January 13, 2011 |
By J.P. Allen



Before this December, my mother knew very little about Shakespeare — and almost certainly not enough to teach Shakespeare.

She was forced to confront the Bard by the will of a higher power. The faculty at Centre College, in my hometown of Danville, Ky., had decided it was her turn to teach Humanities 101, a year-long whirlwind introduction to the Western literary and cultural canon.

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Around the bend: A new year brings hibernation time

Posted on January 13, 2011 |
By Jessie Raymond



I’m not opposed to New Year’s resolutions. I just don’t think Jan. 1 is a good time to start anything that requires self-motivation.

In Vermont, the deepest part of winter is just beginning. People may feel obligated to make New Year’s resolutions to exercise and lose weight and get organized, but right now all anyone really wants to do is curl up on the couch and eat. Anything. With extra butter.

Even my cat gets fat in January.

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Editorial: Dear Gov: Spread your passion

Posted on January 10, 2011 |
By Angelo S. Lynn



How will Gov. Peter Shumlin make up a $150 million budget deficit, grow jobs, initiate a renaissance in Vermont agriculture, improve educational outcomes, expand broadband to the last mile and reform the state’s health care system to stop double-digit cost increases year after year — and do it all without raising broad-based taxes?

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Clippings: 20-somethings on the launch pad

Posted on January 6, 2011 |
By Ellie Moore



“Honey, listen,” my father says, “you and your brother are 99 percent likely to give back to society. But there’s always that 1 percent, and you’ve got some artistic tendencies.”

This was a motivational speech given to me the summer after my junior year of college.

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Editorial: Middlebury's economic future: Keep status quo or be proactive

Posted on January 6, 2011 |
By Angelo S. Lynn



Middlebury residents have received a real bargain from town taxes during the past two years as taxpayers have benefited from the same level of services with no additional tax increases. Think of that. While food prices have gone up, health care has skyrocketed 20 to 30 percent, and most other expenses have seen inflationary hikes of 4 percent or more, town taxes held steady.

It is not surprising, then, to see a projected increase of 2.13 cents on the municipal tax rate in the draft budget, and possibly more if the select board or townspeople think additional town spending is beneficial.

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