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Editorial: Getting to know Plato

Posted on March 11, 2010 |
By Angelo Lynn



I admit the last time I read Plato’s works had to be in the early 1970s as a college student. And, like most of you, I hadn’t thought much about it since; at least not in a direct way.

My loss.

So it was with interest that I met Victor Nuovo, professor emeritus of philosophy at Middlebury College, a few months ago to talk about a series of essays he was writing on Plato’s last work called “Laws.” As the front-page story in today’s issue reports, after a few conversations, we decided to run them in the Addison Independent.

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Guest editorial: Exemptions - 230 + 1?

Posted on March 11, 2010 |
By Ross Connelly



Editor’s Note: This editorial by the Hardwick (Vt) Gazette spotlights a House bill that limits access to public records. The examples used are local to Hardwick, but could easily pertain to Addison County.

Vermont state law gives people the right to see public records concerning matters conducted by public bodies. The law states “it is in the public interest to enable any person to review and criticize their decisions even though such examination may cause inconvenience or embarrassment.”

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Clippings: Tragedy strikes in tropical paradise

Posted on March 11, 2010 |
By John Flowers



“He’s dying!”

The shrill cry cut like a knife through the searing Costa Rican air that had been doing a lethargic tango with the sounds of crashing surf, clinking glasses and Jimmy Buffet’s “Cheeseburger in Paradise” crackling through a primitive boom-box.

It was a jarring wake-up call from a pool-side seat last month during a family vacation to the warmer climes of Central America. Our family tries to join the snowbirds for a week each February to recharge the batteries. A little fun in the sun, some family togetherness and some memories to last a lifetime.

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Around the Bend: Turkey love heralds spring's arrival

Posted on March 11, 2010 |
By Jessie Raymond



Not sure whether spring has arrived? Just ask a turkey. Judging from the way ours are acting, it’s been spring for weeks.

Mingling among our dozen or so free-range chickens, we have eight Slates and Bourbon Reds, two breeds of heritage turkeys. These old-fashioned breeds of turkey are heavier and tamer than the wild turkey and smarter than the genetically “improved” supermarket turkey, which in terms of adaptive intelligence ranks just above a cinder block. They let us know loud and clear when mating season — what we more politely refer to as “spring” — has arrived.

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Editorial: 'We the problem,' not Congress

Posted on March 8, 2010 |
By Angelo Lynn



In a recent piece in Newsweek, a headline over a photo of a sea of American people proclaims in large type: “We The Problem: Washington is working just fine. It’s us that’s broken.” On a national scale, the piece hits the mark; and, oddly enough, it directly contradicts the experience we have just witnessed at town meetings all across Vermont.

The piece in Newsweek  by Evan Thomas is summed up in his second paragraph:

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Editorial: A model for the state?

Posted on March 4, 2010 |
By Angelo Lynn



Of the town meeting votes in Addison County this year, the most dramatic was the overwhelming decision among five Addison Northwest Supervisory Union towns to unify their schools under one overarching school governance board. The vote, which was the third in the past few years, passed with 63 percent in favor and 37 percent opposed.

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Editorial: Bristol: A time for collaboration?

Posted on March 4, 2010 |
By Angelo Lynn



Planning commission members in Bristol drew a line in the sand with their revised town plan, and voters boldly stepped over it.

By rejecting the town plan and the gravel extraction zoning ordinance by almost a 2-1 margin, town residents finally got their say on an issue that has dominated discussion for the past four years. The vote totals tell the story: Bristol residents voted 598-364 against the proposed town plan, and 627-349 against the gravel extraction zoning ordinance. That is overwhelming.

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Clippings: Congress proving to be a bad joke

Posted on March 4, 2010 |
By Trent Campbell



Could there be an easier job right now than writing for the “Daily Show with John Stewart”? The actual words spoken by the players and pundits in Washington need no embellishing to reach the level of satire. I don’t know whether to laugh or cry when I listen to them. If you are of a certain age you will remember the great 1976 film “Network,” in which the main character, a newscaster, implores his viewers to open their windows, stick out their heads and yell, “I’m as mad as hell, and I’m not going to take this anymore!”

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Politically Thinking: U.S. Supreme Court vacancy looms

Posted on March 4, 2010 |
By Eric L. Davis



One of Sen. Patrick Leahy’s principal responsibilities as chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee is to shepherd President Obama’s nominees to the federal judiciary through the committee and on to favorable confirmation votes by the full Senate.

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Between the Lines: Town meeting? Let's talk about underwear

Posted on March 4, 2010 |
By Gregory Dennis



You gotta love Town Meeting.

Even if 90 percent of the discussion is about budget numbers that are as dry as a speech by Gov. James Douglas, there’s a certain Kabuki-like quality to the charmingly ornate process of gathering to discuss the town’s business.

And speaking of Gov. Douglas, he was again absent from his role as moderator, out of Vermont on state business. He’s now missed one-third of the town meetings going back to 2005, but Douglas ran again this year for the town moderator spot. It’s apparently the one office to which he knows he can still get re-elected.

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