To The Daily Sun,
Benjamin Franklin understood that for democracy to flourish, all citizens must have access to the knowledge and information they need to participate in that democracy. To this end, he and his colleagues devised a plan to create a single collection of their combined personal libraries and make these books available to the citizens of Philadelphia. Thus was the concept of a public library born.
Now, nearly 200 years later, the Gilmanton Year-Round Library continues the tradition. Resources available at the library allow every Gilmanton resident an equal opportunity to access information regardless of socioeconomic status. Whether it is a child learning the alphabet or a senior searching for computer assistance, the librarians are there to help. Early childhood programs ensure that every student has the opportunity to begin their school years with appropriate language skills. Library resources for older students allow those with less access to information at home to keep up with their peers. Adults benefit by finding information needed to pursue further education, conduct job searches, and research government programs.
Now that we're living in the digital age, the digital divide may have narrowed. But it has become much deeper for those who do not have computers or internet access. As government resources become available only through the internet (including our own town information!), as e-commerce allows for better consumer shopping for those big ticket purchases, as job searching and application submission is available almost exclusively online, we are pleased that the Gilmanton Year-Round Library makes both computers and internet access available -- for free.
As we follow in Benjamin Franklin's footsteps, we encourage all residents to make use of the information and programs offered by the library. Our goal is to provide every community member with the resources needed to reach their fullest potential.
Board of Directors
Gilmanton Year-Round Library
Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 February 2014 10:44
To The Daily Sun,
The Laconia City Clerk Mary Reynolds and Laconia City Attorney Laura Spector-Morgan continue their quest to punish me for requesting a recount that proved that there was a mistake made in the Sept. 10, 2013, Laconia Ward 5 Primary Election. They believe that I'm required to fill out a IRS W-9 form before I can recover my court cost for correcting their mistake. The following clearly explains who is required to file a W-9 Form. The return of court fees is not included in this explanation because court fees are not income.
This is what the U.S. Tax Center says: "The W-9 Federal Income Tax Forms are filled out by people who have done work for a company but not as an employee. Companies who hire people such as freelancers or independent contractors to do work are still required to report these non-employee's wages to the IRS. Employers get all the information that the IRS requires by asking these independent contractors or freelancers to fill out W-9 Federal Income Tax Forms."
This is the same information that is on the IRS W-9 Form under "Purpose of Form": "A person who is required to file an information return with the IRS must obtain your correct taxpayers identification number (TIN) to report, for example, income paid to you."
The City has not submitted one court case where the winner or loser was required to submit a W-9 Form.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 February 2014 10:41
To The Daily Sun,
There has been no greater political, social or economic disaster this century than Obamacare. The bungled roll-out wrapped in never ending horror stories, millions of canceled insurance policies, ultra narrow provider networks with monster deductibles has overwhelmed the logic of voters. The noisy, nut case supporters that filled this paper have become all but silent.
Democratic lawmakers at high risk of losing their jobs in November are running scared and speaking out. Even Democrat Carol Shea Porter is said to have ripped into Obama last week for not having left a trail of fired bodies over the mind-numbing failure of Obama care. Note, Porter now trails her Republican opponent in the polls. She and other Democrats find themselves between a rock and a hard place after their yes vote uttering you could keep your insurance and your doctor. These people know Obamacare stinks to the high heavens. More scary for them, they know the public smells the stench.
The main purpose of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was to get the uninsured, insured. It isn't working. Only 11 percent of the people signing up were uninsured. The Congressional Budget Office ( CBO) now predicts there will still be 33 million people uninsured six years from now.
The statistics all skew the older and sicker are signing up. Why not, They are getting a good deal. They are going to consume far more health care than they pay for. The young folks, staggering under record college debt are not signing in numbers required to stop future premiums from rising by double digits, annually.
We needed the ACA to stop the uninsured from using the costly emergency room for routine care. The ACA has only worsened that problem. The vast majority of people getting insurance are being thrown on to Medicaid. Medicaid patients are 40 percent more likely to use the emergency room than an uninsured person. Emergency rooms now are being overrun with new ACA/Medicaid patients demanding to be treated for colds, sore throats, head aches and rashes at costs 15 times greater than being seen by a primary care physician. These people cannot find doctors who will treat them and doctors won't treat them because the government pays them a meager pittance to do so, below their actual cost.
The CBO just announced that the ACA was going to kill employment by the equivalent of 2.5 million jobs. Why? Because the ACA produces an incentive to work less, especially at the bottom third of the income ladder. The person who gets a $1 an hour raise or promotion pays higher taxes. In addition the person will likely lose all or a portion of their insurance subsidy making the person worse off financially. The person gains nothing by working harder to get a raise and get ahead. Obamacare destroys the work ethic of Americans and will keep doing it into eternity. Obama has made working less the better strategy.
Wasn't the ACA implemented to cut health care costs. The CEO of Aetna said last week unless the data changes his company would be required to increase premiums by double digits in 2015 to reflect the poor health risk pool of the ACA. Tens of millions are already paying far more for insurance than they were a year ago simply because of the ACA. All with higher deductibles and a much narrower network of providers produced by the ultra low reimbursement rates from government. Doctors and hospitals demanded protection from competitors in order to participate. The result: Less choice for you.
Before the ACA stock holders took the losses on the chin when insurers lost money. Not now. Can you believe it? Obama has promised billions in taxpayer bailouts to insurance companies that lose any money participating in the ACA. Obama demonized insurer profits before the laws passage. Now he guarantees their profits with your money.
Who can deny that Obama care turned an already poor situation into something far worse, now with endless billions of wasted taxpayer dollars for good measure. The same result we get every time government sticks its nose into private enterprise claiming it can do things better and of course to produce equality. All it does is create disasters of biblical proportion with pain and suffering for millions that is incalculable.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 February 2014 10:35
To The Daily Sun,
In Wednesday's paper, Toni Piper responded to a recent letter of mine where I suggested Republicans need to have a plan to transition people off welfare and dependency. Toni said it isn't government's job to get people out of poverty. Right, absolutely right. But then there is the reality we smash our heads up against if we don't consider finding some realistic transition vehicle.
I don't think it is reasonable to shut off all support systems, like turning off the lights. Such would result in starvation, homelessness, riots, crime rates soaring. Heck, it would cost more then it would save.
Okay, so I at least put out an idea. What ideas on the subject do others have? Toni, what is your thinking for some realistic plan?
Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 February 2014 10:30
To The Daily Sun,
Have you heard that Common Core is the next great thing in education? Have you been told that this curriculum will better prepare students for degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM)? Believe it or not, you'll have to take that on faith.
Common Core is the latest "faith-based initiative" in top-down government education programs. Robert Scot, former Texas education commissioner, stated that he was urged to adopt the Common Core standards before they were even written. Perhaps his leap of faith was given a push by federal Race to the Top funding ($4.35 billion), the usual carrot-becomes-stick Washington ploy to impose its will.
Proponents of the one-size-fits-all curriculum claim that Common Core will better prepare students for careers in STEM fields, but they have no proof. Their federally incentivized replacement for local control of our public schools was not pilot-tested before being steamrolled into our classrooms.
As with supporters of other big government programs, advocates of Common Core act with unnecessary and unseemly urgency, as if recognizing a narrow window of opportunity to impose their will. Desperate to avoid the inconvenience of having to get buy-in from parents — the ultimate authority in a child's education — they prefer fait accompli to factual debate.
Education historian Diane Ravitch wrote, "The Common Core standards have been adopted...without any field test." Proponents push ahead "despite the fact that no one has any idea how they will affect students, teachers, or schools. We are a nation of guinea pigs, almost all trying an unknown new program at the same time."
The irony of this process — especially for STEM standards — is that it runs counter to the scientific method, defined by the Oxford English Dictionary as "systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses." Would you allow your child to be a guinea pig for an untested medical procedure?
I'm reminded of a conversation with my doctor about treatment alternatives. After presenting and immediately dismissing two options, he told me that surgery was the right choice. I told him that while I valued his expert opinion, the choice was ultimately mine to make. My non-surgical procedure was successful, didn't keep me out of work for two weeks, and cost two-thirds less. Whether as medical consumers or education consumers, we must never abdicate our role as decision-maker.
Show me an expert supporting Common Core and I'll show you an expert who supported "new math" or any of the dozens of other discredited education "reforms" foisted on students, parents, and taxpayers over decades of decline in public education. Each did its own harm, wasting precious education funding before being abandoned. But at least damage from those failures was limited; Common Core's universality could fail us all.
George Will recently wrote of Common Core, "It is the thin end of an enormous wedge. It is designed to advance in primary and secondary education the general progressive agenda of centralization and uniformity." He continued that national standards extinguish federalism's creativity, since "...it is more likely there will be half a dozen innovative governors than one creative federal education bureaucracy. And the mistakes made by top-down federal reforms are continental mistakes." Will also pointed out, "Fifty years of increasing Washington input into K-12 education has coincided with disappointing cognitive outputs from schools. Is it eccentric that it is imprudent to apply to K-12 education the federal touch that has given us HealthCare.gov?"
Common Core advocates erroneously conflate consensus with correctness, touting conformity and uniformity over creativity and the uniqueness of each community and student. The American experience is the triumph of choice over consensus for consensus' sake, one of trusting decision-making at the local, family, and individual levels. Those we hire to advise us should not be allowed to usurp that authority.
The key issue of Common Core implementation (and the inevitable alignment of college-prep testing and teacher assessments with this single curriculum) is the marginalization of parental empowerment, community involvement, and creativity in the learning process by those who may have ideological or financial reasons to support this program. Don't take "expert opinion" on faith. Judge for yourself: Opposition grows as more people learn the details about Common Core.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 February 2014 10:27