To The Daily Sun,
Let me be the first to thank New York City Mayor Bill DeBlasio for smacking all of us up side the head with the harsh reality of just how broken our education system is in today's highly charged political climate.
He thinks it's a good idea to close some of the city's best charter schools. Why of course, because it is causing harm to some of the public schools. John Hawkins brings this progressive mendacity into crystal clear focus: "The primary goal of our education is not to educate our students; it's to sustain the teachers' unions and fatten the bank accounts of college professors and administrators. This is why the education establishment hates private schools, school vouchers and charter schools, even though they do a better job of educating our students than our public school system."
As John C. Goodman notes, "Success Academy 4 in NYC is where 80 percent of the students passed the math test and 59 percent the English test. The co-located middle school the mayor is protecting and where many of those 194 charter students would end up is where 5 percent of students passed the math test and 11 percent passed the English test. "Clearly, this progressive Democrat and many of his brethren appear willing to sacrifice millions of poor children in order to support teacher's unions, big government, higher taxes and more government spending.
As the Brookings Institution, the CATO Institute, Walter Williams and Thomas Sowell among others remind us, parents of financial means already have school choice. They can afford to move to a neighborhood that has better schools or send their children to private schools. Of course there are some on the left who genuinely want to liberate poor children from bad schools, but they risk the wrath of their party, the unions and headstrong school administrators.
If we can just for a minute, push all the bureaucratic power and control issues off the table and look at the issue through the lens of an innocent child, where does it lead? In my opinion, the inequality of educational opportunity in this country rests primarily on the shoulders of progressive pigheadedness and a controlling, collectivist mindset. John Goodman appears to be painfully correct when he describes this issue in layman terms: "poor kids are almost always enrolled in bad schools. Rich kids are almost always in good schools." In some large inner-city schools, our biased education system has caused some schools to become more segregated than schools were in 1954 when the Brown vs. the Board of Education Supreme Court case outlawed state schools that segregated black students from white students. So, just where are those civil rights leaders now?
Almost everyone with a clear eye can see that our high school education is not what it used to be decades ago. A column in the Jan. 26, 2014, edition of the Washington Post reported, "In almost every state, the amount of money spent per pupil has more than doubled in the past 40 years." Neal McCluskey of the CATO Institute brings us the shameful cost analysis, inflation adjusted for 2013 for K through 12 education: 1970 - $56,903 and 2010 - $164,426. Perhaps this is due to a perverse paradoxical incentive. "We just can't possibly do any better unless you give us more money."
Chad Mathis, physician who is now running for elected office in Alabama notes, "Real education reform starts by getting Washington out of every parent's business. Local control, expanded choice, and an experience that fits the needs of every student should be the goal." Common Core is the central planners latest attempt at putting the government squarely between parents and their children. Behind the sweet-sounding rhetoric is a plan to wipe out free market school choice.
Melissa Harris-Perry, professor of political science at Tulane University and MSNBC host, gleefully reveals the true liberal progressive agenda: "We have to break through our private idea that kids belong to their parents or kids belong to their families." She goes on to say that kids belong to whole communities and once we realize this, we'll make better investments in government indoctrination of children. If that doesn't chill you to your "uncommon core," then you must be comatose or a liberal ideologue.
Check out the wonderful documentary, "Waiting for Superman" which reveals how the bureaucratic tentacles of the powerful teachers' unions have stymied educational choices and diminished the possibility that children from poor families will get an equal chance at a good education. The bottom line is that parents must be empowered through more choice with private schools, charter schools, vouchers, competition and local control for all families, not just the the upper classes. That is the way to provide the impetus for positive change in our stagnating school systems. It won't be easy to get there, especially with so many Republicans having bought into the fraud that is "Common Core."
Last Updated on Tuesday, 25 March 2014 09:23
To The Daily Sun,
In 2007 Gov. John Lynch launched his "25 in 25" initiative with the goal of having 25 percent of New Hampshire's energy from renewable sources by 2025. New Hampshire's total in state energy consumption in 2010 was 295 trillion BTUs. Of that 27 percent comes from buildings, 36 percent comes from transportation and 37 percent comes from electricity. To achieve the 25 percent goal, 74 trillion BTU's will need to come from renewable resources. 43.5 trillion BTUs (14.7 percent) of New Hampshire's energy already comes from renewables (32.6 trillion BTUs from electricity), so 31 trilliom BTUs of additional renewable energy needs to be developed in the next 12 years.
Generating renewable energy from transportation has proven to be very difficult and renewable building energy, primarily from solar and wood, also has limited capacity. The only area with the possibility of substantial renewables growth is in the generation of electricity. According to Professor Mike Mooiman of Franklin Pierce University an additional 31 trillion BTUs of renewable electrical energy could be generated by 135 25MW wind farms the size of Lempster Mountain or 80 15MW wood burning plants like Bethlehem or 780 10MW solar voltaic farms of 100 acre size.
It is reasonable to assume that at least two-thirds of the 31 trillion BTUs required will need to come from wind power. New Hampshire currently has three operational wind farms: 24 MW 12-turbine Lempster Mountain, 99 MW 33-turbine Granite Wind and 48 MW 24-turbine Groton Wind. The 75.9 MW 23-turbine Wild Meadows and 60 MW 24-turbine Spruce Wind are planned for the mountain ridges surrounding Newfound Lake over the strong objections of the local residents. If these two proposed projects are built New Hampshire will have five wind farms with a total capacity of 307 MW and 116 wind turbines.
Based on Professor Mooiman's estimates we will need an additional 2,250 MW of capacity consisting of an additional 900 2.5 MW 500 foot wind turbines on the scenic mountain ridges of New Hampshire to generate two-thirds of the required 31 trillion BTUs to meet the 25 in 25 goal.
If you are sitting at home looking out at the scenic mountains around Squam Lake or Lake Winnipesaukee and you think that all of the fuss over putting wind turbines around scenic Newfound Lake doesn't affect you, think again. If Newfound Lake can be sacrificed for the state's 25 in 25 goal, do you really believe the mountain ridges around your lakes can escape the march of the wind turbines?
Last Updated on Wednesday, 26 March 2014 03:23
To The Daily Sun,
It's back — Mediscare. And it's just as false and misleading as ever. In December 2013 New Hampshire began being bombarded with ads attacking Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter which tried to scare us into believing that the Affordable Care Act was denying us the opportunity to renew our policies and keep our doctors.
Shea-Porter immediately responded saying, "Washington Republicans should take down their misleading attack ads and stop frightening Granite Staters who hold individual policies from Anthem, because they can indeed renew their policies and keep their current doctors and hospitals." She added that she'd worked successfully with Anthem to extend the renewal deadline for individual policy holders.
The fact-checking organization Politifact investigated the attack ads and found them to be false, stating that, "New Hampshire policy holders were always able to extend their current policies 12 months, thanks to the state's early renewal option." For that reason and also because Shea-Porter had convinced Anthem to extend its renewal deadline to December, Politifact rated as true Shea-Porter's December statement that, "Granite Staters who hold individual policies from Anthem ... can indeed renew their policies and keep their doctors and hospitals."
Of course most people in New Hampshire don't hold individual policies — only 5 percent do — so the majority (with employer based insurance) are not affected by any of this. We are so fortunate to have such a hard-working congresswoman who cares about that 5 percent of New Hampshire citizens and fought to prevent New Hampshire's one individual-policy insurer from harming them.
Gilmanton Iron Works
Last Updated on Tuesday, 25 March 2014 09:08
To The Daily Sun,
There is sputtering from the far left that people are too hard on Obama. There is a grain of truth in this complaint, but it has to be examined with a wide-angle lens. In order to put the allegation in proper perspective we need to go back in time a little.
If you recall when George Bush was president there was a never-ending donkey chorus of screams regarding his bungling incompetence. There were so many in the screaming far left choir, they became known as the "Bush bashers.". They never stopped barking. If some dog crapped in their yard it was Bush's fault. If it rained on their picnic, it was Bush's fault. If their hemorrhoids acted up, it was Bush 'so fault. Guess what? Bush left office.
For the first five years of Obama's presidency, it is still Bush's fault. So when people like Bernadette Loesch and others say that the right is picking on Obama over zealously, I would suggest to you they are merely trying to balance the scale of attacks leveled unendingly at George Bush and at a high decibel level. Not only during Bush's eight years in office, but during Obama's five years in office.
I am sure people reading this, except for Bernadette and few other far left snow flakes, are saying, "This guy has it dead right." With scale balancing in mind.
There is not enough lipstick at Revlon, to make the oinker Obamacare is, anything other than the pork chop it is. The average American isn't stupid, they know when someone is playing them for a sucker. Obama has consumed the entire energy and conversation of the nation for five years with Obamacare at a very deep cost to the economy. Democrats even admitted it, they had not read the legislation. How could they? It was thousands of pages of legal gibberish still being debated in the courts to this day.
Nancy Pelosi even joked we would know what was in it after we opened the box. Some joke. This nation is discovering all to unhappily what is in the box. Damn few people like it. Anyone can drag out an illustration of someone who benefited. I can produce 10 that have been harmed for every one of them. It takes no Einstein to see that is a poor deal. Obamacare has been discovered to be exactly the crap legislation it was always said to be.
The overwhelming majority of Americas still strongly oppose it. Seventy-five percent of people eligible for subsidies are refusing to sign up. That single fact alone proves the incredible failure of the plan. When asked why, they say the costs are still too high. They are right. The premium costs are going up double digits next year if they think the current cost is high. Wasn't the reason for Obamacare to stop such increases? The vast majority of people are being forced into Medicaid where ever fewer doctors treat those patients and every shred of evidence proves people without any insurance live longer than Medicaid patients. Obamacare patients are already driving up, not down, emergency room demand in many cities because no doctors will treat them. We have 19 of the best cancer hospitals in the world. Fifteen of the 19 will not see Obamacare patients.
Millions have had their insurance canceled, millions more face huge increases in their out-of-pocket deductibles and ultra narrow networks. You tell me how Obamacare improved healt hcare for Americans given that back drop of facts. By the way, Obama has agreed to bail out every insurer if they lose one dollar. If that is not big government corruption, what the hell is?
Last Updated on Tuesday, 25 March 2014 09:04
To The Daily Sun,
Regarding Harry Accornero's letter printed in The Laconia Daily Sun dated March 22. Mr. Accornero is certainly entitled to his opinion, but he does not believe that the Obamas are a real family, questions whether they are married, asks if Michelle is really a Michelle or a Michael and if the girls are really their daughters.
It may be spring but flakes are still falling in Laconia.
Paul E. Trombi
Last Updated on Tuesday, 25 March 2014 09:02