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Clippings: Actor learned from a great mentor

Posted on December 10, 2009 |
By John S. McCright



My childhood friend Toby Huss is an actor. He lives in Los Angeles and actually makes a living playing characters on TV and in the movies. Google him, you’ll be surprised how far a boy from a small town in Iowa can go when he heads to the bright lights of New York City, and the brighter lights of Tinseltown, with dreams, drive and a natural affinity for outrageous behavior.

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Politically Thinking: Factors pressing on school taxes

A “perfect storm” of forces is making Vermont school boards’ task of preparing budgets for the 2010-11 school year more difficult than at any time in recent memory. The contributors to this storm are declines in the education grand list, the strain on the state’s General Fund, and the fall in the number of students age 5 to 18.

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Politics of $1 million in aid

Posted on December 7, 2009 |
By Angelo Lynn



Last week, area and state legislators sent a letter to Gov. James Douglas recommending that the state set aside up to $1 million of the $8.67 million federal economic stimulus money to help Addison County businesses affected by the closing of the Champlain Bridge. The initiative was spearheaded by Senate President Pro Tempore Peter Shumlin, D-Putney, and House Speaker Hap Smith, D-Morristown, and though it had the support of most Addison County legislators, the proposal was laden with political overtones.

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Editorial: Good speech; no good options

Posted on December 3, 2009 |
By Angelo Lynn



In listening to President Barack Obama outline his strategy for sending 30,000 more troops into Afghanistan on Tuesday night’s televised address, we found ourselves wanting to believe his rationale and his assessment, but what we recognized was that it was little more than a well-delivered political speech carefully calculated to cause the president the least amount of political damage.

That was a disappointment.

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Clippings: Media give thanks for news bounty

Posted on December 3, 2009 |
By John Flowers



Too often I have taken Thanksgiving for granted as simply a day off from work to gorge myself on turkey, pie and just about anything else that doesn’t move. Pilgrims? Have never really given them, their funny costumes and blunderbusses much thought.

But this year, I thought I’d take some time to put the “Thanks” in Thanksgiving — specifically from a journalist’s perspective. In no particular order, I thought I’d extend my heartfelt newsroom appreciation to:

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Around the bend: Stealth knitter eyes holiday deadline

Posted on December 3, 2009 |
By Jessie Raymond



With the holidays approaching, our house is already filling up with the love and laughter of family and friends. Surrounded by my favorite people day and night, I keep coming back to one question: How do I make them go away?

Oh, I’m all for family togetherness; it’s just that the constant presence of nearly everyone on my Christmas list has made it impossible for me to work on their gifts in secret.

That’s right, I’m a stealth knitter.

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Missing the mark in Vermont

Posted on November 30, 2009 |
By Angelo Lynn



In the hubbub over the recent crackdown on employers hiring illegal migrant workers, the one statement that seems to define the situation in Vermont is that the hiring of migrant workers is not about cheap labor, it’s about hiring dependable labor in a market where no others are willing to do the work.

If Congress, the administration and the federal bureaucracy could tailor federal laws around that single premise, perhaps a workable immigration law (or amendment) that applies to dairy farms could be written and passed.

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Clippings: A Thanksgiving 'right on the money'

Posted on November 26, 2009 |
By Trent Campbell



It seems like one guaranteed topic of conversation around the Thanksgiving table is who has had the worst Thanksgiving experience. Before this year’s meal is up, tales will be told about overdone or underdone birds, friends throwing up in the bushes, travel nightmares, dogs making off with turkey legs or even whole turkeys, dropped food and smoke-filled kitchens. But to me there is no such thing as a bad Thanksgiving. If I can steal a line from Woody Allen (about a completely different topic), even my worst Thanksgiving has been right on the money.

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Politically Speaking: Republicans could challenge Dubie

Posted on November 26, 2009 |
By Eric L. Davis



Could there be a Republican primary for governor in 2010, or an independent conservative candidate in next year’s general election? While most media and political attention has been devoted to the five-way primary for the Democratic gubernatorial nomination, there have been some indications in recent weeks that Lt. Gov. Brian Dubie may face challenges to his candidacy from the conservative side of the political spectrum.

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Despite falling fertility rates, trouble ahead

Posted on November 23, 2009 |
By Emerson K. Lynn



Guess which country has the lowest fertility rate — Iran or the United States. It’s Iran.

The United States is one of the few rich nations of the world in which women have more children during their child-bearing years (15 to 49) than it takes to replace them and the fathers. Iran has a fertility rate of 1.9 for the whole country, 1.5 for the capital city of Tehran. The magic number is 2.1. Two to replace the parents, point one to compensate for early female deaths. The U.S. rate is at 2.1 or a bit higher.

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