Op/Eds

02/20/2020
Here we go again. It is hard to understand what college Republicans were thinking when they decided to once again invite Charles Murray to speak at Middlebury College. One can only assume this is meant to be a deliberate provocation to students (and others) of color at the college — a not-so-subtle signal that dog-whistle white supremacy is alive and well in Vermont. Murray’s brand of pseudoscience “proving” the superiority of Europeans has been thoroughly discredited. There is no value in debating — let alone hosting — his dishonest ideas unless your intention is to re-legitimize them. This...
02/20/2020
Now that Bernie Sanders is leading in the Democratic primary polls, we will undoubtedly hear more about “socialism.” This has a familiar ring to those who are familiar with the McCarthy Era. As in that time, it is the word itself that seems to trigger people most. While it is defined in a variety of ways, a common threat is that government should be actively engaged in the production and distribution of goods and services to benefit all its citizens. So, if you went to a public school, paid into or received benefits from Social Security or Medicare, you are a socialist. If you called 911,...
02/17/2020
The next stop in the Democratic primary is this Saturday, Feb. 22 in Nevada, and it will likely add confusion not clarity in terms of defining the party’s leading nominee. That’s begs a new question: If the Democratic primary remains competitive with the top four or five candidates through the spring, is the party weaker or stronger for it? After two lower-tier candidates have surprised voters in the first two contests, this week’s caucus in Nevada’s may give Vice President Joe Biden a needed boost. But it’s no slam dunk. It’s anybody’s guess which candidate will emerge victorious and get the...
02/17/2020
We ended our work early at the Statehouse on Feb. 7 due to the huge snowstorm, but otherwise we’re just about one month into the 2020 Legislative Session and it’s been nonstop action! We’ve already sent several important bills to Gov. Scott for signature. Unfortunately, he vetoed a bill that would have provided universal paid family leave to enable Vermonters to take paid time off from work to care for a new baby or ailing family member. Although there was broad support in the legislature for this program, a vote to override the governor’s veto failed by one vote in the House. Similarly, a...
02/17/2020
How in the world did we get here? When did it happen? When and where did we go so wrong? Was it my generation, the next, the next or today’s? Or, are we all to blame? We have moved forward as a country in so many positive ways, the list is long. Yet, here we sit today in the mist of fear, hate, lies, ugliness, disrespect, dishonesty — that list is so long. Both these positives and negatives have existed together down through the years. But how has the negative gotten such a grip on our country, to seemingly be beating down the positive — the good that is out there, the good that moves us...
02/13/2020
We have an authoritarian in the White House who, this week, is undermining the very foundation of our judicial system, interfering with justice in the courts on a case-by-case basis and telegraphing his desires to a corrupt Attorney General — and yet, liberal pundits around the country are panicked about what to do if Bernie Sanders is the Democrat’s nominee. Seriously? Get a grip, pundits — and many Democrats. First, Sanders has long held an advantage in New Hampshire, as well as in Iowa due to his name recognition, large numbers of loyal supporters and a grassroots campaign ideally suited...
02/13/2020
Looking out an airplane window, people who are flying over the Midwest often say the earth looks like a patchwork quilt, all the many squares of fields spread out across the flattened plains. My grandparents farmed in western Illinois, and I suppose that was how their farm would have looked, although I never saw it from the air. These days, those squares have gotten larger. Much of the land, while still farmed, is owned by huge agri-business corporations. The remaining houses are rarely occupied by those who work the landscape. In consequence, the towns and small cities that once thrived by...
02/13/2020
Vermont voters will cast presidential primary ballots on Tuesday, March 3, along with voting for local offices and school budgets on Town Meeting Day. Vermont will be one of 14 states holding primary elections on that “Super Tuesday.” Any voter in Vermont may vote in either the Democratic or the Republican primary. However, unlike in the August primary for state offices, where the voter’s choice of which ballot to mark is secret, in the presidential primary the voter must ask for either the Democratic or the Republican ballot. The highest turnout in a presidential primary in Vermont was in...
02/13/2020
Editor’s note: This is the 46th in a series of essays on the history and meaning of the American political tradition. In June 1858, the Republican Party of Illinois held its state convention and nominated Abraham Lincoln to be its candidate for the United States Senate. He began his acceptance speech by calling attention to the precarious state of the nation, which was divided over slavery. Like a preacher, he began by issuing a divine warning: “A house divided against itself cannot stand” (Mark 3:25), and continued, “I believe this government cannot endure, permanently half slave or half...
02/13/2020
We should all be grateful for those courageous congressmen, including our own three, that voted to impeach and convict the despicable idiot who has soiled the White House and has been on a crusade to destroy our values. We should thank those who have spoken out in exposing his corruption and lies. The Senate, of course, wasn’t able to convict him, due to one of the most flagrant cover-ups in American history by Trump’s Repugnantan lackeys. Now it’s time for someone to, by whatever means possible, end this farcical presidency before he does any more damage to the country. This is urgent! Bruce...

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Addison County Independent

58 Maple Street
Middlebury, VT 05753

Phone: 802.388.4944
Fax: 802.388.3100