Recent comments

  • Reply to: Agent Orange—Its Legacy Endures   2 years 3 months ago
    It is killing us slowly but surely and taking away our "golden years".....It is a sad testament to the brave men and women who served and were exposed in Vietnam.....
  • Reply to: Four Years after Sandy Hook, the NRA Continues the Arming of America   2 years 3 months ago
    He forgot to mention that her gun control platform is the primary reason Hillary Clinton lost the elections. Gun control advocates don't like to admit that. No gun owner that would like to keep their guns is going to vote for somebody that would like to take them away.
  • Reply to: Four Years after Sandy Hook, the NRA Continues the Arming of America   2 years 3 months ago
    Thank you for your commentary on the NRA and firearms in general. This is meant as a compliment . . . you're article is less biased against the NRA than many if not most articles published on mainstream media webpages. Your article has substance and objective information, which is not often the case with firearms related articles. I have become somewhat sympathetic to the NRA in recent years on many issues because of the anti-gun lobby's efforts in conjunction with the media. Many of my liberal leaning friends have as well (I'm a moderate who supported Clinton, Bush, Bush, Obama, Obama, and Clinton). The anti-gun lobby thinks their agenda is appealing to mainstream Americans, and I just don't think it is at all. At least the NRA appeals to my working class clients. But I have always thought--well prior to Heller and law school--that the Second Amendment secures an individual liberty not connected with its militia clause--Heller simply established this. I have generally found the anti-gun lobby to be so profoundly out of touch with substance that they are worse than the NRA. While I don't own any firearms, I have researched the topic quite extensively. After Heller, I began to think what empirically tested policy prescription models and measures of gun safety and violence reduction yield significant results. I believe, and data supports, that a very limited and narrowly tailored strategy to achieve firearms related safety and a reduction in gun-related violence is ideal. This strategy does not limit firearms in anyway--no magazine ban, no assault weapon bans, etc. I believe the best policy is achieved by requiring a state, local, or national permit to purchase, own, and carry a firearm (carrying would require a more extensive check and training course). The issuance of such a permit is based on a fingerprint-based national, state, local background check along with a course of instruction on firearms safety, shooting instruction, and for those who want to carry, a course on carrying and the like. I would not have an issue with requiring minimum cognitive capacity such as scores on military entrance exams or a high school GED equiv. No state or local government could then limit a person of age, sound mind, no criminal record, who has completed adequate training from carrying via "good substantive cause" claims. This would be combined with heightened screening for gun dealers along with mandatory civil liability insurance approval to conduct sales and transfers (the insurance industry would reign in bad faith dealers in no time). But neither the NRA nor gun control advocates would support this practical and tested approach. Why? Because the NRA is only happy with no restrictions and factions of the gun control lobby want a complete and total ban on the civilian ownership of firearms. Polarization prevents progress.
  • Reply to: Four Years after Sandy Hook, the NRA Continues the Arming of America   2 years 3 months ago
    Connecticut had an “Assault Weapons” Ban and the 5th most positive gun control state ranking by the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence when the mass shooting occurred at Sandy Hook elementary school. According to the police report on the Sandy Hook Elementary school shooting: Adam Lanza "was undoubtedly afflicted with mental health problems; yet despite a fascination with mass shootings and firearms, he displayed no aggressive or threatening tendencies". So, a mentally ill person, who was not adjudicated as potentially violent, murdered his mother, then took her firearms (including an AR-15 which was legally owned under Connecticut’s assault weapons ban), took those firearms to a local gun free school zone, broke into the school, murdered 26 people, then committed suicide. All of which are already against the law, but the only response was, and continues to be: “WE NEED MORE GUN LAWS!”.
  • Reply to: Four Years after Sandy Hook, the NRA Continues the Arming of America   2 years 3 months ago
    "LaPierre’s initial response to Sandy Hook shocked many people. “The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is with a good guy with a gun,” he said . . ." Regarding physical school security, following the Sandy Hook mass shooting, the NRA recommended to have armed security in our nation's schools. At that time many politicians and the “press”, who were predisposed against firearms, dismissed this recommendation as extreme. Even though, in response to the Columbine High School shooting, then-President Bill Clinton and a Democratic Congress enacted a program called Cops in Schools. As a result, 23,000 public and private U.S. schools provide armed security for our children and many more are considering it as a result of the Sandy Hook shooting.
  • Reply to: Pay To Be Schooled?   2 years 3 months ago

    The truth is there is no such thing as "best" charter school. The school is just perceived to be "best" because the students that attend the schools are screened. If a charter school accepts any student regardless of aptitude or grades, that charter school is not going to be any better than a regular public school. It could even be worse. Believe me. Most teachers in the traditional public schools are better trained, more experienced, and are held more accountable than most charter school teachers. I have a few friends who initially taught in some charter schools in CA and found out that the hype about charter schools are not true. It's a product of good advertising from the owners and those who stand to gain financially in converting schools into charter schools. Charter schools are a big business. Those charter schools that do "well" screen their students. Meaning, only the best can attend the schools. Hence, they do well in tests, etc. When they look good, they get a lot of funding from private donors who have no real idea about running a school. Those who don't really screen their students based on grades or aptitude, perform badly in state tests. Their labs have no equipment; they hardly have books or textbooks. One of my friends taught chemistry in one charter school in CA but got so frustrated by the lack or absence of resources and being told by the board of directors to just find any resources to use (she had to borrow from my school) while all the board members drive luxury cars.

  • Reply to: Agent Orange—Its Legacy Endures   2 years 3 months ago
    The effects of Agent Orange last in Humans for seven Generations. That's your children's, children's, children's,children ,children's,children's,children. That's a heck of a long time and a whole lot of descendants.
  • Reply to: No Child Is a Superpredator   2 years 3 months ago
    I'm so moved by your story. Thanks so much for sharing. Prayers for blessings in your continued success.
  • Reply to: Comment: Populist Revolt   2 years 3 months ago
    This article demonstrates just how far the Progressives are separated from reality. Last year I met and talked to a recently retired truck driver. The company he worked for was on the ropes and a few years ago was purchased by Diane Hendrick's company ABC Supply. He couldn't stop praising Hendricks. They now had new equipment, increased pay, and a solid retirement. Demonizing those who disagree with you is not an effective long term policy. Of course, a simple truck driver doesn't count for much with progressives. They prefer a Russ Feingold who is clueless about real working people.
  • Reply to: Bright Sides to a Trump Presidency   2 years 3 months ago
    There will soon be a run on pitchforks. That thunder in the distance isn't just a rain storm.



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By Wendell Berry

Manifesto: The Mad Farmer Liberation Front

Love the quick profit, the annual raise,
vacation with pay. Want more 
of everything ready made. Be afraid 
to know your neighbors and to die.
And you will have a window in your head.
Not even your future will be a mystery 
any more. Your mind will be punched in a card 
and shut away in a little drawer.
When they want you to buy something 
they will call you. When they want you
to die for profit they will let you know. 
So, friends, every day do something
that won’t compute. Love the Lord. 
Love the world. Work for nothing. 
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it. 
Denounce the government and embrace 
the flag. Hope to live in that free 
republic for which it stands. 
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man 
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers. 
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.

Say that the leaves are harvested 
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus 
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Listen to carrion—put your ear
close, and hear the faint chattering
of the songs that are to come. 
Expect the end of the world. Laugh. 
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts. 
So long as women do not go cheap 
for power, please women more than men.
Ask yourself: Will this satisfy 
a woman satisfied to bear a child?
Will this disturb the sleep 
of a woman near to giving birth? 
Go with your love to the fields.
Lie easy in the shade. Rest your head 
in her lap. Swear allegiance 
to what is nighest your thoughts.
As soon as the generals and the politicos 
can predict the motions of your mind, 
lose it. Leave it as a sign 
to mark the false trail, the way 
you didn’t go. Be like the fox 
who makes more tracks than necessary, 
some in the wrong direction.
Practice resurrection.

Wendell Berry is a poet, farmer, and environmentalist in Kentucky. This poem, first published in 1973, is reprinted by permission of the author and appears in his “New Collected Poems” (Counterpoint).

Public School Shakedown

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