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VETERINARIANS HAD TO clip away fur on Willow, a poodle-Wheaten terrier mix, to treat the large puncture wounds she received when attacked by a pack of dogs earlier this month in the Green Mountain National Forest near the Goshen-Ripton border.
10/31/2019
The story of two hikers and their small dog being attacked by a pack of hunting hound dogs while hiking in the Green Mountain National Forest near the Goshen-Ripton border two weekends ago is as shocking as it is frightening. Frightening because the dogs surrounded and attacked the couple for much of the half hour they were under siege. Shocking because the story is such an outlier. As Game Warden Dale Whitlock said, “I’ve been a game warden since 1996 and I’ve never seen anything like this.” As repercussions from this incident sugar out, what’s key to keep in mind is that no one is...
10/31/2019
I remember a conversation that I had with my father when I was about ten. I asked, “Why doesn’t anyone remember what it was like to be a baby inside the womb? It’s not like it was that long ago, and we were all in there once…” His reply was something I have thought about ever since because, in the beginning — with my ten-year-old brain — I wasn’t sure it made sense. He said, “Well, in order to have memories, you need words. And babies in the womb do not yet have any language because they have not learned any words yet.” I remember wondering: “Do I really need words to describe what I think...
10/31/2019
As a freshman in college back in 1986, I bought a $75 used sewing machine so I could make throw pillows for my dorm bed. Really, I did. The point here is not that I may have been the least cool student ever to attend college; the point is that I’ve had an interest in sewing for a long time. That sewing machine — a 1960s-era J.C. Penney Stitchmaster Behemoth 940 — was already vintage when I bought it. It was, for its day, portable, but only in the way that an anvil is portable. It wasn’t fancy, it was loud and carrying it across the room gave me back problems that persist to this day. But it...
10/31/2019
I’ve been patient, I really have. I don’t bring it up with friends anymore. I no longer ask strangers for donations. But my campaign is going nowhere. So I figure it’s time to make some noise. Starting with this reminder to the Lamestream Media: I’m running for president. Of the United States. Close observers of my campaign, if there are any, will recall that I announced my candidacy right after Joe Sestak entered the race. Sestak was the 24th Democrat to run for president this time around. He’s a former Navy admiral and was a member of Congress from Pennsylvania. He said he delayed launching...

THE BLACK RESCUE Rocco is described by his owner Karl Lindholm as a “good/bad dog” — flawed but full of personality. Photo courtesy of Karl Lindholm
10/31/2019
I tire at times of people who rhapsodize about their dogs, posting pictures on social media and making every conversation dog-talk. “They’re dogs,” I grumble. “Animals. Not people. They lick their genitals, in public. They live to eat and poop and hump. They pee in the house if you’re not vigilant. They’re dogs!” I can be hard on people who tell me not that they have a dog, but identify it only by its breed, as in “I live in Ripton with my wife and kids and two Goldens.” A wise guy, I say, “Goldens? You got chickens?” Or they say, “I live in Weybridge with my husband and our Lab.” So I ask, “...
10/31/2019
Editor’s note: This is the 40th in a series of essays on the history and meaning of the American political tradition. The course of this nation’s expansion was brought almost to completion by conquest during the presidency of James K. Polk, a protégé of Andrew Jackson, who favored Jackson’s expansionist policies and followed them to the letter. He was known as “young hickory,” a chip off the old block. Polk presided over the U.S.-Mexican War (1846–48). Henry Clay, whom Polk defeated in the Presidential election of 1844, judged that Polk incited it, and there is general agreement that he did...
10/31/2019
In Whom We Live and Move and Have our Being   It’s October Snow geese fly far above the trees in sleek silence. Canada geese circle noisily above the stubby cornfield. White pines drop their needles through the clear air transforming the forest floor into a golden carpet between one day and the next.   And beneath all that motion lies mile after mile of aquifer, acre after acre of unmoving rock sturdy enough to support this forest but porous enough that water seeps, squeezes, filters its way pore by careful pore.   And who can say which is more amazing the golden needles the clear air those...
10/31/2019
As a native Vermonter, I am no stranger to the beauty of fall. Just as I delight in the opening of an early spring flower or the first dusting of light snow, I continue to be awestruck by the autumnal display of our tree friends. Each year they gift us with a month-long fireworks finale and smile at our ceaseless “oohs and aahs.” This year’s show has felt particularly ablaze. On more than one occasion, my routine ride from Vergennes to Middlebury has caused me to abandon my planned excursions, and instead join various flatlanders on the roadside, as we attempt to capture a bit of nature’s...
10/31/2019
In your editorial of Oct. 24, you write: “Surely, when the idea of consolidated governance was conceived in Act 46, no one imagined district boards would rule like kings.” That is incorrect. From the very outset of Act 46 the constant refrain of many of us — at Legislative hearings, State Board of Education meetings and local school board meetings —was that when it comes to governance, you have to assume that the wrong people will eventually come to power. The essential goal should always be to create a system that works even then. That’s the fundamental rationale for checks and balances. The...
10/31/2019
The ACSD School Board seems to be moving quickly in the direction of closing town schools. I strongly urge everyone from all towns to pay attention and become involved. Below is an edited version of the letter I wrote to our school board when they solicited public comments this past spring: “I am very upset that closing schools is the direction in which the board seems to want to move. Please reconsider and change directions. We should instead be working to strengthen ALL of our schools. “It seems to me that my opposition to school closures has often been minimized, as some feel I am overly...

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Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100