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Richard Burchell will help get Belknap County moving again

To The Daily Sun,

My choice for District 2 - Belknap County Commissioner is small-business owner Richard Burchell. The district includes the towns of Barnstead, Belmont, Gilmanton, and Tilton.

He understands the economic pressures on the people throughout the county. Richard also understands that in order to develop positive working relationships you must first build trust by listening and respecting others. We need to elect County Commissioners who will promote good will with the County Delegation to get Belknap County moving forward again.

Please vote for Richard Burchell for County Commissioner on the Sept. 9 Republican primary ballot.

David DeVoy


Candidate for Belknap County Commissioner District 1


Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 September 2014 05:09

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Israel is an oasis of reason, humanity, decency and justice

To The Daily Sun,

Oh how I marveled at an illuminating article on the most recent Israeli/Palestinian war written by professor George Maloof. His intensive research apparently uncovered another example of the beastly nature of the Israeli people. He found a post and video entitled, "Sderot cinema" which shows people who live in that region of Israel chomping on popcorn and cheering the bombs bursting in Gaza. This seems to be further proof that "Israel has become a right-wing, Zionist, fascist state," according to the professor.

Well, you know the professor is right about one thing. That video does appear to exist. However, the professor's interpretation of the video and pictures is just a tad one-sided. Well yes, the N.Y. Times did report that this is another example of war where civilians and fighters dehumanize the enemy. Apparently, there were a handful of Jewish people who commented "death to the Arabs," and that is wrong. On the other hand George, is it possible that if your academic community had been under intermittent rocket fire for a decade, some in your community might be a little miffed at the author of those attacks? Is it just possible that the folks sitting up on the hill overlooking the rockets landing in Gaza were cheering the possibility that this Israeli response to the Hamas onslaught of rockets might actually signal a victory over these terrorists? And that they might actually get a chance to live a normal life without continually running into bomb shelters after the shrill sirens have once again commanded them to run for cover?

I know George, that doesn't fit the narrative of one of your likely heroes, Noam Chomsky, who would have us all believe that the Jewish people are nothing more than blood-thirsty monsters. Chomsky has of course been a favorite political activist of the progressive left. Also, the lover of "Occupy Wall Street" and hater of capitalism and United States engagements in wars. In the opinion of many from the right, Chomsky is the idol and mentor of the intellectual wasteland that has infected much of academia and our mainstream media. As Caroline Glick of the Jerusalem Post notes, "the U.S. media led by the NY Times have systematically ignored, obfuscated and downplayed Hamas's war crimes while swallowing whole its bogus statistics and accusations against Israel."

Apparently, Professor Maloof has consumed that same balderdash, viewed a video and now proclaims in a matter of words, "see I told you so." Without offering one scintilla of proof, the professor asserts that it is all a myth that "Hamas started the war crimes; Hamas, not Israel, is responsible for civilian casualties; Hamas uses human shields; Hamas and Israel are equally to blame."

Well yes, it is a myth that the blame is equal. The blame belongs to the Jihadi terrorists known in this case as Hamas, who believe that Jews are the descendants of apes and pigs and want to kill them all and have absolutely no desire to ever agree to a two state solution. Caroline Glick is absolutely correct when she reminds us that "the moral and ideological divide between Israel and Hamas is so self-evident, that the only way to ignore it is by embracing and cultivating ignorance."

In my opinion, that is exactly what professor Maloof is doing by his disgraceful and deceitful attack on Israel which is an oasis of reason, human decency and justice surrounded by a desert of ideological barbarism.

Steven Plaut's article in the Daily Mailer, Frontpage, believes that "those who claim anti-Zionism is different and distinct from anti-Semitism tend, on close inspection, to be anti-semites themselves." Please George, tells us that claim does not apply to you since that is what you assert in your letter. Academic elitism is one thing. Hypocritical bigotry steeped in moral relativism and outright lies is quite another.

Liberal columnist, Susan Estrich has a comment which just might clear your clouded thought process George. "Israel is not the 'occupier' of Gaza. Israel did not build tunnels into Gaza". If there is one truth in all this, Ari Lieberman of frontpagemag.com nails it. "Hamas will continue to divert humanitarian goods for war making and the Imams will continue to preach hate and anti-Semitism."

The cognitive dissonance exemplified by the blindness of Western academics and the European media is distilled in the shameless Aug. 19 letter to the editor by George Maloof.

Speaking of distilled, I need a drink to lift my spirits after digesting the putrid poppycock of one "nutty professor," to quote Steve Earle.

Russ Wiles


Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 September 2014 05:03

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President Obama has let me down on any number of fronts

To The Daily Sun

My motives for promoting Jim Rubens for U.S. Senate were questioned by a letters in the August 29 and 30 issues.

I am an Independent by registration. I was in the last presidential primary, too, when I wrote letters for Ron Paul and took a Republican ballot in the primary to vote for him. He really would have ended the wars. I went to four of his events and liked his audience, as well as the candidate himself, each time. I especially liked his primary night gathering in Manchester, and found Ron Paul an honest and endearing candidate, when he reported to us that he'd called up Mitt Romney and told him, "You won, but we're nipping at your heels!" Paul came in second in New Hampshire and expressed delight.

Judge Napolitano invited me onto his show, for my Ron Paul support. I don't have any interest in Rand Paul, however.

Yes, from 2006 to 2010 I was Belknap County Dems' Chair. I met wonderful people. I worked hard to have monthly meetings around the county, in the 11 towns. I chafed at the bit that Laconia would not organize itself as a city with wards, but self-relegates to having the same number of officers as a town. I met Barack Obama when he was at Belknap Mill, on the lawn, July 2, maybe in 2006.

But President Obama has let me down. On the issue of health care, he gave up single-payer without a whimper. It would have made portable life insurance, as Medicare is portable for us (now I head for 70 next year). It would have lopped out the profit-makers.

Then, too, he's signed free-trade agreements and has a massive one in the works now for Asia. Free-trade agreements favor corporations over the environment, over labor. Fair trade is understood by many of us a long time now, as we buy fair-trade chocolate and coffee in our specialty stores, health food stores. Fair trade honors labor and the environment as important. I wanted to believe that our "change" president would know about and promote fair trade.

He messed with habeas corpus, voiding it, essentially. Antiwar.com elaborates on this in June 2012, and other coverage is earlier in his first term. He never closed Gitmo. He spoke of proper treatment of whistleblowers while on the campaign trail, but Bradley Manning is imprisoned, not recognized as a whistleblower. Edward Snowden knows he needs to stay away, though President Obama himself has said, "We need this discussion about NSA spying on citizens," and that wouldn't have happened without Snowden's bravery as a whistleblower.

President Obama has escalated wars in other countries, not ended them, and I find especially repugnant the use of drones that slam out of the sky and bomb, often, either the wrong people or ordinary civilians who were near a target alleged (not proven, law set aside) guilty of something.

Israel's militarism enjoys the same U.S. support and funding it had under Bush-Cheney. The energy industry sees little or no change under President Obama. Too much, President Obama gives us terms three and four of Bush-Cheney.

What really appalls me, now, is his opening the Atlantic seacoast from Florida to Delaware to oil exploration, including sonic booms (deep water) that will damage and kill marine life, including whales. Look what the oil industry already did to the Gulf of Mexico, and years earlier in Alaska. He shuffles about really deciding on the Keystone XL pipeline, and probably does the same safe, holding off, with our Northern Pass powerline dilemma. Nice, that today's news includes Sen. Ayotte as among those who want that line buried and not besmirching our northern vistas. Thank you, Sen. Ayotte.

So, I am sure I've left out something. I wanted to reply. Jim Rubens is the best choice for New Hampshire's Republicans and especially Independent voters. We may have a Republican win. I'd be remiss as a caring citizen not to participate with my free speech and voting option at this juncture.

Scott Brown is not from here. He doesn't demonstrate other than concern for his own personal gain. I have met quite a few Independents, and one in Lebanon stands out, for saying that the Tea Party insurgence drove him from registering as a Republican and instead, now, to being an Independent.

He said, "Pro-choice policies are important, very important, and the Tea Party takes us backwards on that family issue, as well as on other issues." Jim Rubens is pro-choice. He's also cognizant that global climate change is real. The science is right on that. Mankind needs to take care of the planet better. And had better. Jim Rubens is anti-war. He's for campaign finance reform, and earns Mayday Pac's support for that.

Independents can make a huge difference on Sept. 9, choosing Jim Rubens who will do fine airing issues with Jeanne Shaheen who was governor when Jim Rubens was a New Hampshire district senator. New Hampshire doesn't need a Massachusetts candidate, especially one with Wall Street money attached.

Lynn Rudmin Chong


Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 September 2014 04:57

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Havenstein has experience leading people and making decisions

To The Daily Sun,

It's nearly time to make a decision on who to vote for in the New Hampshire Primary Election. Walt Haverstein is running, and after reviewing his positions and those of the others running, he gets my support. He has a unique strategy for improving the state .... and a unique reason for the importance of that improvement.

He points out (correctly) that it's critical to attract young (working) people back to the state. The population is decreasing, but more concerning is that, beneath the numbers, the demographic data shows that more young people are leaving and older folks are coming in ... to enjoy retirement here. If that trend is not reversed, New Hampshire will continue to spiral into economic collapse and ruin as we struggle to provide support for the retirees with a rapidly diminishing tax base from the declining workforce.

Walt Haverstein has experience running businesses, leading people, making decisions, and knows how to get operations to be productive ... he knows how to attract business to the state. He led the largest private employer (BAE Systems) in the state, and has worked to keep that business here. He is clear thinking, driven toward economic growth, savvy in the ways of leadership, and sensitive to what makes an economy run. He quickly sorts out the critical issues (the state needs energy, the state needs business, the state needs more employment, the state needs an influx of young people, the state needs growth.)

Take a few moments to review all the candidates. Ask yourself how New Hampshire can move back to being the strongest state in New England, not the weakest. Ask yourself what it will take to draw employment from Massachusetts back into New Hampshire. Ask yourself why so many of our residents live here and drive to Massachusetts every day for jobs. Ask yourself who can best bring a business approach to Concord and who has demonstrated the ability to be successful working with large government bureaucracies.

Walt Haverstein is my pick. Study the issues and I hope he tops your list as well. Then join me on Sept. 9 in the primary to vote.

Janet Cramer


Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 September 2014 04:51

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Teachers themselves are saying 13% of colleagues not competent

To The Daily Sun,

Popular governors Chris Christy of New Jersey and Bobby Jindal in Louisiana have convinced their legislatures to rein in tenure. Teachers' unions complain bitterly, arguing teachers deserve job protection because principals rate most of the teachers as excellent or satisfactory. The important question is what does the public think? Do they think the majority of teachers are performing well? What do the parents think? Equally important, how do teachers rate other teachers?

The eighth annual Education Next poll completed in June offers some important insights into these questions. The survey was administered to a representative sample of the general public, parents and teachers. The poll used the common and easy-to-understand A to F scale to define performance.

About 22 percent of the school teachers are not performing adequately in the public's eye, if one presumes satisfactory work demands a C or higher grade. Citizens do like the majority of teachers in their districts, saying 51 percent deserve an A or B grade. But 13 percent were given a D, and 9 percent were given an F.

The parent findings were similar to the public's. Fifty-six percent were given the two top grades, while 13 percent got a D and 10 percent were given an F.

The last group was the teachers. As you might expect, teachers rate their peers more satisfactorily. It could be logically argued they have a conflict of interest. But even their polling is more than telling. Sixty-nine percent of teachers give their fellow teachers an A or B grade, but not all get passing scores. Eight percent get a D and 5 percent deserve an F.

Unions could argue that the public grades too harshly in its assessment and that parents blame teachers for their children's faults. But those unions are going to find it hard to explain away why 13 percent of teachers rate their colleagues as woefully inadequate or failed in their teaching skills. Teachers themselves are saying 13 percent of teachers are not doing their job. That equates to tens of thousands of failed teachers with tens of millions of kids sitting today with a failed teacher in front of them as I write this.

That is not some small issue given the erosion of middle class incomes. It could be far worse. The public believes the failed teacher percentages to be far higher than that.

We cannot have great schools without great teachers. It is a fact. As more evidence comes in, it only confirms the ability of the teacher in the classroom has more effect than anything on any child's learning success. That difference can be as much as 50 percent. Improving the lowest performing segment of teachers would go a long way in creating those great schools we all want.

Stanford economist Eric Hanushek estimates that if we replaced the 5 percent of failed teachers with simply average teachers the impact would be so large we could increase GDP by 1 percent. Student performance in the U.S. would catch up with Finland, Canada Germany and other high performing countries.

That is where tenure laws come into play. The survey revealed that the public favors ending tenure by a ratio of 2-to-1. The public by the same margin wants tenure to be based on test performance in the classroom and retained on performance (not longevity). Only 9 percent of the public agrees with the tenure laws as practiced in their states and districts.

It is clear, the public and the courts have turned against teacher tenure and with justifiable reason.

Tony Boutin


Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 September 2014 04:47

Hits: 131

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