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Local & US Politics: Corkboard

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Mark1 - Tue, May 16, 2017, 3:49 P
Turners Falls Indians
Mike, as a vote counter, any insight on why the town has yet to post results from precincts 2, 3, and 5 nearly 24 hours after the polls closed?

Mark1
 
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stash - Tue, May 16, 2017, 11:30 A
Turners Falls Indians
It is too bad our Town Meeting doesn't have the eggs to do what the town in Vt. did. No school budget if they change their mascot. If they SC doesn't agree with the towns wishes I'll bet there will be more changes next time around... I'm surprised Lizzie didn't poke her beak in the mix... I like the new vote flags.
 
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MikeNaughton - Mon, May 15, 2017, 11:20 P
Turners Falls Indians
For what it's worth, Precinct 2 voters want change on the school committee. Shawn Hubert beat Sandy Brown in Gill, and April Reipold and Cassie Damkoehler were the winners in Montague. The non-binding referendum was 203 Yes to 60 No and 20 blanks.

There were 283 ballots cast, which is a pretty good turnout for a town election (last year, there were about 70), but well below that for a national election (last year's presidential election we had almost 750 ballots).

I continue to wonder why so many more people will turn out to vote on the national level than bother to do so for a local election, where their vote can matter so much more. Case in point: this time around, we may have two new town meeting members who will have been elected with only a couple of votes. Library trustee and trustee of soldiers memorials (veteran) also received write-ins for blank slots.
 
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MikeNaughton - Sun, May 14, 2017, 5:11 P
Turners Falls Indians
Rob -

I'm a counter in Precinct 2 (actually, I'm now the clerk, so I tabulate the results that the counters give me), and blanks are counted for every vote because we have to account for every ballot cast, whether it had markings on it or not. It can get tedious sometimes with the town meeting members, since they're "vote for seven" and sometimes new counters take a while figuring out the correct number of blanks if there aren't seven names on the ballot, but the numbers have to match or we get heck from Deb Bourbeau. But "yes/no" questions are easy, and we'll definitely know the number of blanks.
 
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Rob - Sat, May 13, 2017, 10:58 P
Turners Falls Indians
Mike thank you.
I will personally leave that question blank since I did not attend school here, I do not have an emotional tie to the mascot. And my kids are too young to be worried about the team mascot.
Maybe for this question they will count the abstentions and not just the yes and no respones
 
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MikeNaughton - Sat, May 13, 2017, 8:23 P
Turners Falls Indians
Rob -- good questions. Since no one else has responded, I'll step up and offer my perspective, for what it's worth (which may not be much). I hate to see someone ask good questions and raise good points and then just be ignored.

First, I agree that the Cleveland team's logo is way worse, but I think it's a case of nobody here in Montague being in a position to do anything about Cleveland. The Turners Falls High School logo is definitely something that the school committee can change, so when the issue was raised they considered it. Along those lines, some people say, "Why not change the name of Turners Falls while you're at it?", which is also a good question but would be much harder to do, since it would probably involve the state and maybe even the federal governments. In this case, I think the school committee saw what they perceived to be a problem that was within their power to fix, so they did; the fact that they didn't fix other similar problems was because they had no power to do so.

I also agree that the the pre-European inhabitants of this region should not be forgotten, but after following this issue I wonder if the former logo didn't actually contribute to the notion that "Native Americans are .... some people from the old West". After all, the picture was of a person wearing the headdress of a Plains Indian -- not anyone who would have been living around here. I think the logo might have been easier to defend if it had more accurately portrayed a local inhabitant. But if the goal is not to forget those people, maybe the proposed cultural center focusing on the pre-European sites discovered at the airport will be helpful. That, along with proposed changes to the TFHS curriculum, might keep the history alive.

On the Indian vs. Native American question, you're right -- they're both coming from a European perspective. I believe that Canada avoids this by using the term "First Nations", which sounds like a good solution to me.

As for your proposal to change the name to one of the local tribes, I dunno. For one thing, I think the SC is likely to rule out any names that reference a specific group of people, but even if they didn't I think you'd need a pretty good rationale for picking one name over another (why "Wabanaki" and not "Nipmuc"?) As for "Homo Sapiens", it's certainly all-inclusive, but somehow -- maybe it's just me -- I can't imagine sports fans chanting "Go Homos". :-)

Finally, I think I'm with you on boycotting the ballot question. I'm already on record as saying that I don't think a ballot question is the way to decide this issue (or even find out what "everyone" thinks, since so few people typically vote), but since the selectboard in their wisdom put the question on the ballot I think people should mark their preference (and if they really don't care, then leave the ballot blank).

Just my thoughts. . . .
 
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Rob - Fri, May 12, 2017, 7:13 A
Turners Falls Indians
I do not understand what is so offensive of the Turners Falls Indian compared to the cartoon depiction of the Cleveland baseball team. One of my concerns though is that removing the Indian will regulate the people who lived here before the Europeans as forgotten history. Reminding school kids that Native Americans are not some people from the old West but actually spanned our entire continent.If the term Indian is offensive, I don't see how Native American is any less offensive since they are both European created names.
My compromise solution would be name the mascot after one of the tribes that lived in the area (per town website): Pocumtuk Confederacy, the Narragansetts, the Nipmucs, the Wampanoag, and the Wabanaki tribes. Honoring our past is a good thing. If these names sound offensive then maybe the teams can be called the Homo Sapiens which is all inclusive.
Side note, I don't understand the point of boycotting the question on Monday instead of voting one way or another. I do agree with the concept that deciding Civil Rights by a majority vote is not the best way or else minorities would never have gotten their rights. But I do not see this question as a Civil Right
 
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MikeNaughton - Fri, Mar 10, 2017, 7:50 P
Town Meeting
I agree, David gets points for persistence, but he was clearly out of order, and there was no way that Ray Godin could let his questioning continue.

That said, I agree that he was asking some good questions, and they deserve an answer. The annual town meeting will provide another opportunity, although I personally hope that we don't have to wait that long to learn more about that situation.
 
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stash - Sun, Mar 5, 2017, 10:05 A
Town Meeting
I caught the rerun yesterday. If Dave ever gets an answer to his questions I hope he posts them here. If it wasn't for him and Jeff I don't think there would be any questions raised at the meetings. Kudos to Dave for not folding.
 
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stash - Fri, Mar 3, 2017, 1:33 P
3/2 Town Meeting
Looking for when it will be aired. The MCTV schedule page shows an error message. Thanks ,,,, Stash
 
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newbie - Wed, Feb 8, 2017, 6:10 P
Warren
just talking with my Old Dude ,asking if they were all set for the storm. He said still no word from Lizzie Warren. Going on 3 months. She seems to be able to stick her beak into anything except her own folks. I'm surprised she isn't putting her nose in the Mascot BS. Seems every body is a bit too PC. What's next, indian corn, blacktop? Seems ok for Indian River Casino. Enough is enough. The old Dude was happy to see that the selectmen grew a pair at Mondays meeting and let one on each side speak, and then did it. He wondered how many that were there have been in town for any length of time. In my opinion it should have been a BINDING vote. Ed
 
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newbie - Wed, Feb 1, 2017, 7:37 P
Prostest
Washington, a week ago. That's DC Ed
 
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Maureclaire - Wed, Feb 1, 2017, 4:17 P
Prostest
VAndalism where ?
 
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Maureclaire - Wed, Feb 1, 2017, 4:12 P
Warren
Did you know she was a Republican right up until 1995 ? Dems & Republican parties are but two wings of the one capitalist bird.
 
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newbie - Sat, Jan 28, 2017, 10:01 A
Warren
I'm so glad that windmill Warren is more interested in everything but the folks that put her in office. Was just at my Old Dude's checking up on them and he has written her 5 times and has yet to get a response. They weren't real HARD questions either. Lets hope the Democrats don't hang their hats on her next time around. That's all we need, a whack ball who doesn't even know where she is from. She'll never see another vote from me, my kin and I'm sure the Old Dude knows a bunch of folks that won't either. Stay well, ED
 
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Rob - Sat, Jan 21, 2017, 3:11 P
Prostest
I hope they catch the people who did the vandalism yesterday. I hope there will be no repeat of that behavior at any of the protests/marches today.
 
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newbie - Sat, Jan 21, 2017, 10:45 A
Prostest
Was at my favorite breakfast eatery and in the next booth were some folks from Italy and they were talking about yesterdays protests. I heard the comment " Boy the democrats really hate loosing ". Darn near split a gut laughing. I myself don't understand what the breaking of windows and torching a car have to do with the election. At least there was no looting. Going to wander over and check out the Womans march. Have a good day... Ed
 
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Maureclaire - Wed, Nov 23, 2016, 5:13 P
Diemand Egg Buy-in Wed., Nov. P.m. The Farm Mormon Hollow Road
Maybe, just maybe... Homo sapiens should not really be consuming the menstrual product of chickens... maybe ???
 
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maria - Tue, Nov 1, 2016, 2:24 P
Diemand Egg Buy-in Wed., Nov. P.m. The Farm Mormon Hollow Road
Wendell community, neighbors, everybody, A reminder, and a request.

Diemand Egg Buy-In Wed., Nov. 2 4 - 5 p.m. at the farm on Mormon Hollow Road

…in support of our fine, local farm and an informed No vote on Question #3

Here's the request: bring a shopping bag with a sign on it for the news media expressing why you'll vote no on this admittedly enticing referendum question.

(Anyone would like to see cages disappear! But, inadvertently, as worded, this initiative risks substituting other, arguably worse problems, like cannibalism, crushing stampedes, antibiotic overuse…or making small family farming more and more marginal, economically).

Some sign possibilities:

Diemand Farm -- A Local Gem
Cage-Free Isn't Problem-Free
We Love & Trust Diemand Farm
No Pecking or Stampeding Here
Q. #3 Doesn't Fix Industrial Ag

…or other words that express your feelings in a similar vein. We hope to see you tomorrow!

Jonathan von Ranson
 
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MikeNaughton - Sat, Oct 22, 2016, 8:02 P
Told You So.
In my opinion, Donald Trump wants what's good for Donald Trump. Period. Always has and always will. If what's good for him is good for you, then fine, and he'll tell you anything you want to hear to get your vote, but he's made it clear over and over: everything he does is a negotiation, and everything he says is his current negotiating position, subject to change at any time.

BillBry, I think you're foolng yourself -- I don't think Donald Trump even knows that the Bill of Rights is. Certainly not the Bill of Rights as you understand it to be. He says he supports American strength, but he buys steel from China and uses undocumented workers to build his buildings and gets his ties and shirts made in other countries, so what he really means is he wants to use the American military to protect him while he does all these things. And he doesn't want to raise taxes to pay for that -- instead, he'll just stiff our creditors when the time comes. How strong do you think America will be then?
 
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Rob - Sat, Oct 22, 2016, 10:00 A
Told You So.
Trump represents stripping as much regulation as possible away so businesses can make more profit at the small price of destroying our environment. Exactly what rights is Hillary going to be taking away from us? Requiring background checks to help enforce laws currently on the books is disarming people? And yes she supports a lower class by realizing the whole trickle down theory didn't work. Trump is proposing the same trickle down theory but with businesses instead of the rich. Trump is offering a promise of instant gratification at the cost of our planet's future. The Affordable Healthcare Act is not working as well as promised and the problems need to be addressed. (Should have already been addressed but the Republicans in congress have kept trying to repeal it instead of fix it. If they actually proposed a solution to replace AHA before trying to scrap the AHA then they might have a good idea.)
 
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BillBry - Sat, Oct 22, 2016, 9:36 A
Told You So.
It's all coming to a head. World government vs United States of America. Clinton represents a disarmed lower class with no rights and trump supports American strength and the Bill of Rights. It is a simple choice.
 
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MikeNaughton - Sat, Jul 2, 2016, 10:15 P
Over-ride Vote
"Liberals always resort to name calling . . . . I see it all the time."

Huh. While conservatives worry about Subaru-driving Bernie voters traveling the country and getting their jollies by increasing real estate taxes?

It's a strange world we live in . . . . :-)
 
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ghgfarmer - Sat, Jul 2, 2016, 8:09 A
Over-ride Vote
Mark 2 , don`t waste your time on here as it`s just not worth it !! It`s such a wonderful neighborhood we live in where money just seems to grow on trees along with a good paying job everywhere you look as the town has done such a wonderful job!!
 
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mark2 - Fri, Jul 1, 2016, 10:32 P
Over-ride Vote
Liberals always resort to name calling when they don't like or agree with what someone says or thinks. I see it all the time. Liberals are tolerant of other peoples ideas as long as they share the same ideas.
 
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JanetMasucci - Fri, Jul 1, 2016, 10:04 P
Over-ride Vote
I have to chime in here.

Mark, it sounds like you are saying liberals call you names, because, "unfortunately, it's the PC world we live in."

It's PC to call people names?
 
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MikeNaughton - Fri, Jul 1, 2016, 8:57 P
Over-ride Vote
". . . you can't reason with liberals."

Mark2 - thanks for that -- I haven't had a good laugh in a while. How would you know? -- I can't think of a time when you've ever tried to reason with anyone who disagreed with you.You just make flat statements with little or nothing to back them up,and when you're challenged you don't respond.

But happy 4th to you, too. I'd add, "hope you have all your fingers on Tuesday", but I actually think you're smart enough to make sure you do. :-)
 
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MikeNaughton - Fri, Jul 1, 2016, 8:54 P
Over-ride Vote
Oh, Stash, blow it out your nose! :-)

Or, better, take a deep breath and calm down. Everyone knows that I don't run the town. And I have the same right to my opinion as you do to yours, and you have the same options with my posts that you say I have with yours.

Sometimes I think you want one set of rules for yourself and another for everyone else. I think you know better. Happy 4th to you, too.
 
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mark2 - Fri, Jul 1, 2016, 7:22 P
Over-ride Vote
Stash, you can't reason with liberals. As long as your view points are in line with them everything is all,unicorns and rainbows. If not they call you names etc. unfortunately it's the PC world we live in. The good old days are Gone.
 
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stash - Fri, Jul 1, 2016, 11:06 A
Over-ride Vote
At least I don't think I run the town like you do. Seems the only opinion that counts are from you and your fellow cronies. Heaven forbid some one makes a statement or asks a question that doesn't go along with your mindset. I have a right to my opinion, if you don't like what I say or ask you can just bite me, or not read it. But we know that you not jumping right in with your almighty attitude is like the Turners dam reversing. Have a nice 4th anyway.
 
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Rob - Fri, Jul 1, 2016, 8:40 A
Over-ride Vote
Mentioning the Fourth of July, it is good to remember that freedom isn't free. The colonies realized they were stronger and could accomplish more if they worked together for the common good. Freedom requires constant vigilance and offering your services to help the community is the mark of the finest citizenship.
 
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MikeNaughton - Thu, Jun 30, 2016, 10:36 P
Over-ride Vote
"You didn't do your homework . As usual on here."

Stash - first of all, you're one to talk about not doing the homework. How many times have you posted some rant about something that could have been cleared up with a quick phone call or visit to the town's web site?

Second - in my experience, John does more homework than most people in town government. If he missed all your wonderful service to the town, maybe it's because it isn't that easy to find. Would you care to add some dates to all those things you say you've done? I mean, so you were a "freebie cop" "back in the 60s"? I'm surprised that they haven't put up a statue of you by now . . . . :-)
 
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MikeNaughton - Thu, Jun 30, 2016, 10:25 P
Over-ride Vote
John - thank you for the kind words. But I would prefer to de-emphasize the "I've done more than you have" side of this, as I think it just tends to turn most people off and deter them from trying to get involved. There are plenty of people who have done as much or more than I have, and the bottom line is that I saw some opportunities that suited my talents and interests and stepped forward to offer to help out. I'm happy that my efforts seem -- mostly, at least -- to have been useful, but I have no desire to get into a "mine is bigger than yours is" discussion with Stash or anyone else.

But thank you for the kind words, and a happy Independence Day to all! :-)
 
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stash - Thu, Jun 30, 2016, 5:39 P
Over-ride Vote
ET TU Brutus. ( probably miss spelled ) When I am treated well I will treat people well. You didn't do your homework . As usual on here. I did a stint on the assessors. Was a prec 2 member til health took me out. And as far as my little housing deal. We brought in Highland and Keith elderly with assistance from FRHA. Have 110 apts. We refurbished Hillcrest Homes twice, Lots of work on Sunrise terrace. New pellet boilers in Keith and Highland. And the real neat part. NOT ONE PENNY FROM THE TOWN's POCKET. We also pay sewer taxes and water bills for the 110 units. Also back in the 60s I was a freebie cop in town for a few years.
 
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jhanold - Wed, Jun 29, 2016, 10:58 P
Over-ride Vote
Stash has rattled the wrong cage in maligning Mike Naughton's service to Montague. Mike may not be as old as Stash, but he's been a Pct. 2 member on Town Meeting for the dozen years I've been on and I don't believe Stash has been on for any of that time -- Stash should know, he's from Mike's precinct -- and has been a highly respected and hard-working member of the Finance Committee for most of that time. I would set Mike's service at least equivalent to Stash's service on the Housing Commission, the one position I could find for him. Each of them has found a public role to serve, and Mike has nothing to apologize for. Aside from corkboard posts, I don't recall a Stash presence in town government that measures up to Mike's thoughtful contributions. As for who Mike agrees with or not, Mike reaches his own conclusions and if Stash feels they don't fit with him and M2 perhaps that "fit" is not necessary to be a person worth heeding (do they always agree with each other??). While I'm on a roll, the idea of a property qualification to vote was common in the 18th century -- along with condition of servitude and gender -- but is no longer popular. I vote on school issues, park facilities in Millers Falls and Lake Pleasant, and snow plowing in remote parts of town even though they don't benefit me; it's part of being part of a community larger than my own block. Let's have a bit more of the Art Gilmore approach to Montague, supporting the best in other residents rather than sniping at them.
 
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MikeNaughton - Wed, Jun 29, 2016, 9:12 P
Over-ride Vote
stash wrote: "AND AS USUAL we can count on MN to step right in and say how he is against anything I or M2 say."

Stash -- you're not paying attention! Just the other day you posted that you were glad that Chip Dodge was back on the job, and I didn't say that I was against that. And there have been other times, too.

But when you post things, as you often do, that just wallow in some kind of paranoid fantasy world, sometimes I feel like stepping up and saying that I don't see it that way. Were you like this when you were involved with scouting or PTOs?
 
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MikeNaughton - Wed, Jun 29, 2016, 8:51 P
Over-ride Vote
mark2, comments inline:

"Mike. Depending on which side your talking out of. For many years renters or temporary residents have voted on issues that directly affect the property taxes not just here but surrounding towns."
-- Well, yes, renters can -- and do -- vote, and some of those votes affect property taxes. I think it's called "universal suffrage". And in this town, it's not just in general elections -- did you know that renters can run for town meeting? And town meeting votes on a lot of things that affect property taxes.

"This town for years has enjoyed pissing away money and raising taxes for this and that because why not its just money it's just a few dollars more a year etc etc."
-- I don't know anyone involved in town government who has that attitude. I think you're ignorantly maligning a hard-working group of people who are trying to do the best they can. If I thought your opinion was worth anything, I would be personally insulted by that comment. Happily, I don't.

"Now in this high tech world it would be nice to see how many people who pay property taxes in Montague actually voted for this compared to the temporary renter resident who thinks like Bernie Sanders and believes we should fund every thing because it's fun. Then realize that the rent is getting too thigh and load up their 1998 Subaru wagon at the end of the month and move onto the next town and start the cycle yet once again."
-- If anyone wanted to actually do the work, it would be pretty easy to compare the list of people who voted (available from the town clerk) with the list of property owners (available from the assessors office or online), and at least discover what percentage of voters live in owner-occupied homes. I don't know if looking at excise tax information would tell you how many of the others own 1998 Subarus, but looking at previous voter lists and street listings _might_ give you an idea of how long they've lived in town. I'm not aware of any way to gather information about their thought patterns. But that's just hypothetical, because -- based on past experience -- I'm sure that you don't have any intention of actually doing anything to try to find out the answer to your question. And unless you can come up with some even remotely plausible public purpose for doing that study, I would oppose asking anyone in town hall to spend any time on it at all beyond supplying the relevant source material. Talk about a waste of time and money!

"Get the picture??"
-- Well, from your posts I see a jerk who enjoys insulting other people and almost never has anything useful to add to any discussion of town affairs. Is that the picture you're talking about?
 
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mark2 - Wed, Jun 29, 2016, 11:27 A
Over-ride Vote
Then he should know better I guess. Did you read all of my posts or just the parts you wanted. Because it seems like you didn't understand what I was saying.
 
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patrick - Wed, Jun 29, 2016, 11:13 A
Over-ride Vote
If there is one person you cannot accuse of not getting involved in town affairs, it's Mike. Mark, on the other hand has ignored offers to join us in town meeting for years. There still are plenty of openings in our Precinct. Then you can vote on how the tax money is spent instead of just bitching about it.
 
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stash - Wed, Jun 29, 2016, 11:00 A
Over-ride Vote
AND AS USUAL we can count on MN to step right in and say how he is against anything I or M2 say. Must be an ego thing. I've been in town 73 years, been involved in town politics over 40 of those. How about you MN. Ever run scouts, volunteer fireman or PTOs.
 
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mark2 - Tue, Jun 28, 2016, 11:25 P
Over-ride Vote
Mike. Depending on which side your talking out of. For many years renters or temporary residents have voted on issues that directly affect the property taxes not just here but surrounding towns. This town for years has enjoyed pissing away money and raising taxes for this and that because why not its just money it's just a few dollars more a year etc etc. Now in this high tech world it would be nice to see how many people who pay property taxes in Montague actually voted for this compared to the temporary renter resident who thinks like Bernie Sanders and believes we should fund every thing because it's fun. Then realize that the rent is getting too thigh and load up their 1998 Subaru wagon at the end of the month and move onto the next town and start the cycle yet once again. Get the picture??
 
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MikeNaughton - Tue, Jun 28, 2016, 9:27 P
Over-ride Vote
"Wonder how many were property owning taxpayers.?"

Happily, we can always count on Stash to come up with a positive, constructive question that shines a light on what is really going on. And when we're lucky, Mark2 will chime in with an incisive comment that further illuminates the situation and broadens our understanding of the world around us. :-)

But, I have to say, in this case I think you're both wrong. My opinion is based on nothing more than my gut feeling (but that's what this whole thread is based on, right? -- other than Patrick, nobody has any actual facts to back up any of their assertions), but my gut feeling is that very few renters -- ESPECIALLY renters who are expecting to move on in the near future -- got worked up enough about the need either to unplug the siphon under the canal (which won 2-1) or deal with asbestos in the Strathmore complex (which won 3-2) to actually come out an d vote. (Bonus thought -- I also doubt that those renters care much about Montague's highway garage or senior center.)

My gut tells me that only people who actually receive tax bills from the town -- along (maybe) with some renters who see themselves as in it for the long haul -- would care enough to show up at the polls. And not even very many of them, which is why there were so few votes. Maybe most people just accept the fact that prices will go up and there are bills you have to pay. I understand that that may be hard for some people, but surely in today's world in this area town taxes can't be the only challenge for them?
 
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mark2 - Tue, Jun 28, 2016, 3:08 P
Over-ride Vote
My point is. Renters can pack up and move after the 6 month or year lease is up. And move out of town. Leaving behind high property taxes for the things they voted in. As a property owner I'm a lot more invested in the town than someone renting would be. So on items that directly affect the property tax rates I think property owners should be the ones voting on them.
 
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Rob - Tue, Jun 28, 2016, 2:48 P
Over-ride Vote
Some of us renters know that we can plan to spend a lot of money now or potentially have a surprise bill that is ten times higher and since unplanned would mean cuts everywhere else. Renters live here too. Or do you think property owners should have weighted votes based on how much property they own? As a town resident it could be argued that I am a part owner of all the town owned properties.
 
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mark2 - Tue, Jun 28, 2016, 12:31 P
Over-ride Vote
Renters forget that when they vote things in that it will impact the property tax rate, it has a long lasting draw on property owners wallets. As a renter after your lease is up you can move on your way. And the remaining property owners are stuck holding the bag you desperately wanted and voted for.
 
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stash - Tue, Jun 28, 2016, 12:20 P
Over-ride Vote
What I said was your taxes are paid on your rental property by your renters. I'm sure you are making a decent profit from them so , Ya they are NO doubt paying some of your taxes as well. I love how you twist words around. Just heard on the news that now that windmill Warren is on The queens short list she has changed her policy from not agreeing to sucking her butt. Typical Democrat move. YEAH The Donald.........................
 
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patrick - Tue, Jun 28, 2016, 9:20 A
Over-ride Vote
I pay the tax on my own house - many thousands a year - and my tenants pay the tax on the rental properties through their rent.

Anyway, weren't you making the point that renters don't pay taxes? Now property owners don't pay taxes. Make up your mind.
 
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stash - Tue, Jun 28, 2016, 9:05 A
Over-ride Vote
So you DON"T really pay taxes, your tenants do. I see in the Recorder I'm not the only guy in town that thinks the property owning taxpayers should be allowed to vote on tax over-rides. Side note. Glad the Chief is back on the job.
 
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Rob - Tue, Jun 28, 2016, 7:55 A
Over-ride Vote
As a renter I would not want just property owners decide all tax over ride questions. Property taxes may not affect renters as fast as property owners but when the lease expires it is definitely factor in.
 
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patrick - Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 9:57 P
Over-ride Vote
Yes, I rent. I rent apartments out, right here in town. My tenants pay the taxes, it's built into their rent.
 
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stash - Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 9:35 P
Over-ride Vote
Name one that would have OVER 3 grand added to their rent. You would never be able to rent an apt. in town. How about the folks on sec. 8 and subsidies??????? Besides, if the rent gets too high they are gone. Been involved in housing for over 40 years so I do know what I'm talking about. They say it is ONLY going to add $30-40 a year for the duration. How about when you add the regular allowed 2 1/2 each year, plus we'll have to build 2 more taj mahals, the Senior Center and Highway Garage. Not being a smart a$$, but do you rent???
 
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patrick - Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 9:23 P
Over-ride Vote
Renters still pay property taxes.
 
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stash - Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 9:10 P
Over-ride Vote
Pretty darn sad, 602 folks decided that we spend 3/4s of a million bucks. Wonder how many were property owning taxpayers.? Still say they should be the only ones allowed to vote on over-ride votes.
 
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patrick - Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 8:56 P
Hail The Chief
Well said, Mike. Let's not forget that this is our Police chief, a chief who, by most accounts, has done a fine job. No one is helped by publicly airing issues none of us know anything about. Let's hope it's just a misunderstanding and Chip is back at his desk in no time.
 
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patrick - Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 8:56 P
Over-ride Vote
Ugh, forgot to vote. Hope yes wins on both.
 
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jhanold - Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 8:36 P
Over-ride Vote
Pct. 5 was the first one in, but I forget the exact count -- roughly 35 - 26 for each question (split not as close as Pct. 2 but YES prevailed on both). Disappointing turn-out, even though Pct. 5 tends to be at low end. At least 4 of 6 precincts were in by 7:50 or so.
 
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MikeNaughton - Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 8:00 P
Hail The Chief
Much as everyone (well, maybe almost everyone) likes good gossip, it would be very inappropriate for anyone to speculate publicly about what this is all about. Put yourself in Chip Dodge's place -- if there's something here, it will become public knowledge, but if there's NOT, how is he supposed to pull back stories flying around the rumor mill?

From the newspaper account, it sounds as if the AG's office was alerted to something, and they came and looked into it and met with someone in town hall, and now the selectboard is meeting to discuss it. The prudent thing to do is to suspend the chief until whatever this is gets sorted out, but that doesn't mean that they will necessarily find that anything IS amiss.

Sometimes when you look into things, you find that there's nothing there -- or, if there is, that it's not what you thought it was. That's why it's important not to say anything publicly until you're sure that you know what you're talking about.
 
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MikeNaughton - Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 7:52 P
Over-ride Vote
Results are in for Precinct 2:

98 votes total

Question 1: 57 YES, 41 NO

Question 2: 49 YES, 49 NO
 
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stash - Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 7:43 P
Vote
Hope the results are posted here . It says results on the town page. Somebody didn't proof read the info...
 
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Mark1 - Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 3:21 P
Hail The Chief
Anyone have any info on this?

Mark1
 
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stash - Mon, Jun 27, 2016, 9:56 A
Hail The Chief
Holy AG's office Batman.
 
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MikeNaughton - Sun, Jun 26, 2016, 8:25 P
Over-ride Vote
Clark,

First, I think you'll agree that 12 years is plenty of time for people to have kicked things down the road.

You've already commented on the condition of the roads -- do you want to say that all town buildings are in good shape? Or that it isn't long past time to have made plans for improving the highway garage, the libraries, and the senior center? At least the highway garage is in the works, but that's after years of officials saying "there's no money". Tell me honestly -- do you think that when you left office the highway garage was in good shape and ready to last another 12 years?

I don't mean to criticize anyone. I don't think that accomplishes anything, unless there's a "lesson to be learned". I mean to praise the current board, which -- IMHO -- has shown itself willing to take on problems that previous boards haven't, and to try to do something about them.

But that is going to cost money, and I think town taxpayers need to be prepared for that. However, I think that the alternative -- NOT dealing with these problems -- will cost even MORE money down the road (I think we may already be in a position of needing to spend more money than we might have had we tackled these things earlier). That was the point that I was trying to make in that paragraph.
 
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MikeNaughton - Sun, Jun 26, 2016, 8:15 P
Over-ride Vote
Stash,

I am not an expert on this -- for definitive answers, you should talk with Tom Bergeron (Highway Sup't) or Watler Ramsey (Town Planner). But you already knew that, right? But my understanding is that there is no "automation" -- there was a storm drain down to the river before the canal was built, and when the canal was put there they had to do something with the storm drain so they constructed a siphon under the canal, and that is what has become plugged over time.

My understanding also is that this is an entirely underground system, so simply redirecting the water to some other location -- even if that made sense, on which I will defer to the experts -- would not be a simple matter.

Bottom line, I agree with John Hanold -- this is something that we'd be smart to do now, so that we don't face bigger problems down the road.
 
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jhanold - Sun, Jun 26, 2016, 12:35 A
Over-ride Vote
Couple of thoughts on the Monday vote for debt exclusion:
-- Town Meeting overwhelmingly approved both projects (sewer drain and Strathmore asbestos abatement); now we are confirming HOW we pay for them
-- Strathmore: We will have to pay for abatement whether we demolish or develop the buildings; doing it now avoids cost increases and improves marketability
-- Drain/siphon: I'm not an expert, so can't answer on automation, gravity vs. pumped flow, etc., but I believe if plugged or collapsing piping (dating from late 1800's) gets worse we will have a much more serious -- and unpostponable -- overflow problem on major streets, and/or Treatment Plant overload, with state/federal "attention" in addition to our own inconvenience. Doing this during annual canal draining in Fall 2016 is good timing.
-- These are not permanent tax increases (true Over-ride) but rather increases only until these two projects are paid for. Utility company shares cost
-- Impact on taxes is only approx., till bond is actually issued, but some old debt will be retired in Fiscal Year 2018 (earliest that this borrowing would hit, I'd guess) so impact is cushioned.
I may not have expressed all points clearly, but in my view the projects are needed, and should be paid for in this way. Be sure to vote on Monday! (And in Sept, and in Nov ...)
 
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stash - Fri, Jun 24, 2016, 6:08 P
Over-ride Vote
How much water are we talking? They couldn't have it go in the bottom of the canal? And lastly, what automation is used ? It isn't natural flow? Was by Food City and there is digging already.
 
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Rob - Fri, Jun 24, 2016, 7:13 A
Over-ride Vote
I assume it is because the amount of flow into the canal is controlled upstream from that point and water coming in from a storm drain would be uncontrolled and could cause the canal to overflow. Also the top of the canal may be higher than the storm drains near the canal. Lots of variables that could not be controlled by automation effectively.
 
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stash - Fri, Jun 24, 2016, 12:07 A
Over-ride Vote
Is there any reason it can't dump into the canal? Some body has to know..
 
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Clark - Thu, Jun 23, 2016, 10:06 P
Over-ride Vote
Mike: I am a bit sensitive about your statement in YOUR 4th paragraph where you say : " The problem, as I see it , is that we have a number of things in town that have been known problems for years but have been ' kicked down the road ' because people didn't want to tackle them. " I don't know what years you are talking about BUT [ I can't comment on the last 12 years ] BUT I , am very sure I DID NOT advocate "kicking the proverbial can down the road."
In fact , we implemented annual maintenance and repair schedules for various items ,[ roads, lights , buildings , and bridges , road right of ways etc. that are obviously NOT being kept up with.
I must say that during my two visits to Town , I am truly surprised at the POOR condition of many roads and especially the bridge over the canal by the "White Bridge" so called - by the Paper Mill to Greenfield . That "Hump" there is simply DANGEROUS !
I also feel the Greenfield Road is almost a "Turnpike" from Montague City Road to Hatchery Road and then just a "Bike Bridge "? Some one told me it will carry "Emergency vehicles" also . Is that true ? If it will be strong enough to carry emergency vehicles , why not make it 10 ft wider and at least let vehlcles 5 ton or less go over in its present location.
Penny wise and pound foolish should NOT be construed as being PRUDENT ! Just a humle opinion of a person who STILL LOVES Montague !
 
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MikeNaughton - Thu, Jun 23, 2016, 9:30 P
Over-ride Vote
Stash, I agree with you on the Strathmore project. As I see it, unfortunately we as a town don't have the option of spending no money -- we own the buildings, and whatever happens with them taxpayer money will be spent. This proposal seems like a reasonable way to try to limit the total amount that we spend, and I'll be voting "yes", too.

On the sewer article, right now I disagree, and I hope that others may chime in to either back me up or set me straight. As I understand it, the problem is that there is a tunnel from the storm drains going under the canal to the river, and it has become blocked. As a result, especially during heavy rains the runoff backs up and goes into the sewer pipes, which then causes problems for the sewer plant -- we still have times, during heavy rains, when the plant dumps untreated "effluent" into the river, which the EPA and the DEP don't like (and, IMHO, neither should we).

This proposal is to fund cleaning the pipes and unblocking the tunnel, which should solve this problem, and with luck will significantly reduce the approximately $200K per year that the taxpayers pony up for "I&I" in the sewer budget. On the other hand, nobody really knows what we'll find when we clean out that tunnel -- maybe it will be in good shape, but maybe it won't. But we won't know until we do it, and I think we need to do it -- the alternative is to leave it blocked and just let storm water back up, which, even if we think that's a good idea (I don't) the state likely won't let us keep doing for long. So I'll be voting "yes" on that one, too.

The problem, as I see it, is that we have a number of things in town that have been known problems for years but have been "kicked down the road" because people didn't want to tackle them. I give credit to our current town officials for being willing to step up and say we have to deal with them -- they aren't going away, and dealing with them is not getting cheaper, so all we've done is save some money for the people who aren't around any more while increasing the bill for ourselves and those coming after us. I wish it were different, but that's the reality as I see it.
 
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stash - Thu, Jun 23, 2016, 5:14 P
Over-ride Vote
Seeing it is only going to cost me $10-15 a year for the Strathmore project it'll get a yes from us. The sewer job scares me. Just one question. This is ground water going into the Connet, so what is the big deal if it ends up dumping into the canal???? Same water in both. A no on that one from us.
 
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MikeNaughton - Tue, May 17, 2016, 9:17 P
Montague Election
Joyce Phillips out, Heather Katsoulis in as Montague representatives to the Gill Montague Regional School Committee. The end of an era?

Preliminary results (from montague.net):
Marjorie Levenson 315
Joyce Phillips - 276
Heather Katsoulis - 344

so the voters spoke pretty decisively, and the new person got the most votes. Is this the national political dynamic being played out on the local level, where familiar faces are being tossed aside for new ones? Or is something else going on?

Curiously,
Mike Naughton
 
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Blessings - Mon, May 16, 2016, 8:25 A
Montague Election
Thanks for the reminder, Mike!

I am running for Town Meeting in Precinct 1, and even though there are more open seats than candidates, I would still appreciate votes as a good start toward being an active representative.

I promise to pay attention to all of the concerns that come before Town Meeting--not only energy policy, which of course will continue to be a high priority.

I will also appreciate hearing from anyone, any time, about any issue of concern.

Thank you for any support!
Ariel Elan
 
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MikeNaughton - Sun, May 15, 2016, 8:50 P
Montague Election
Just a reminder that Montague's town election is tomorrow, as is the election for the Gill Montague Regional School District School Committee. There are a couple of races (more people running than seats available), and some empty slates, so the result is NOT a foregone conclusion. Polls open at 7:00 am and close at 7:00 pm. When people talk about our freedoms this is one of the freedoms they're talking about -- let's use it!
 
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stash - Tue, May 10, 2016, 2:23 P
Gov’t Work Not
Wow. A form needed to do our taxes showed up today. Almost a month AFTER tax day. It is the form saying you have Medicare Ins. Heard it was held up by the Affordable Care Act. Wonder how many jobs were created to do that? Obamacare strikes again. Got to get the Republicans back in. Enough is enough. If the lying Witch ( I'm using witch so I don't offend any female dogs ) gets in it'll be status quo. 8 years of this crap is enough.
 
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MikeNaughton - Sun, May 8, 2016, 9:26 P
Town Meeting Saturday May 7th
kevinson -agreed. But I think the issue here was whether it would have been better to let the Strathmore mill "burn to the ground". It certainly might have been destroyed, but there would have been more than just a pile of cinders at the end -- there would have been a massive pile of bricks mixed with asbestos and possibly other toxic materials, which would have been VERY expensive to remove. And the town would have had to remove it -- this isn't the old days, when you could just create a pile of toxic crap and let it sit there: the state and the feds don't like that.

But your point is a good one -- stone and brick buildings almost always have a fair amount of burnable materials as well, and a good fire can destroy those buildings.
 
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kevinsnn - Sun, May 8, 2016, 10:46 A
Town Meeting Saturday May 7th
How does a stone structure get destroyed by fire?

Few structures are entirely made of stone. In particular, roof beams are usually made of wood. (The alternative is to make domes and vaults, but it took centuries to master the art of dome-making.)

Roofs do more than just keep the inside dry. They're also a key structural element. A wall, by itself, will tend to fall, either in or out. For a small building, the four walls support each other, but for a large building the centers of the walls are subject to unbalanced forces. The beams are in tension, keeping them from falling outwards. Burn the beams, and the walls will fall.

The heat from the fire will make that worse. It may not destroy the stones, but it will weaken mortar. And once a few stones shift, it puts uneven strain on the rest of the wall, which can collapse.
 
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jhanold - Fri, May 6, 2016, 8:27 P
Town Meeting Saturday May 7th
A comment on "cutting TOWN services to give the school the $$$$." For several years the Finance Committee's recommendation to Town Meeting has been based on a consistent split of revenue, to ensure that one side doesn't starve the other (means we don't starve the G-M district, either). This is eh Affordable Assessment calculation you may have heard of.
Last year the FinComm recommended a little more than the exact calculation, because the gap was small; this year the gap is bigger and we'll see if TM members endorse the school's request (which appears in the Motions) or an amendment to lower it to the FinComm/Selectboard recommendation. The School Committee could offer such an amendment, if they feel they could live with the lower figure, but someone else will undoubtedly offer one if they don't.
A lot of requested projects did not get on the Warrant, let alone get recommended, due in part to inadequate financial resources -- this affected the school as well as the town. These projects may appear again at future meetings.
 
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stash - Fri, May 6, 2016, 7:45 P
Town Meeting Saturday May 7th
Yup, the oil soaked WOOD floors and inner wood walls wouldn't burn??? Seems funny the fire dept had to put out bricks. Also I am willing to bet that they will cut other TOWN services to give the school the $$$$$. For the kids my BUTT.
 
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MikeNaughton - Thu, May 5, 2016, 8:46 P
Town Meeting Saturday May 7th
There will be a discussion about the GMRSD assessment request, for sure. The selectboard and fin comm held to the "affordable" number, but I believe the district intends to request about $50K more. Should be interesting -- the district has some real problems, but whether it's up to the towns to fix them is certainly debatable.
 
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Rob - Wed, May 4, 2016, 9:09 P
Town Meeting Saturday May 7th
lots of money being asked for but not a lot that I saw was controversial but I am sure at the meeting i will learn what items people have problems with.
 
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MikeNaughton - Wed, May 4, 2016, 8:58 P
Town Meeting Saturday May 7th
Rob - thanks for fleshing out the picture.

I guess you haven't gotten too many responses to your query (so far). Too bad . . . . there's going to be a lot going on at town meeting.
 
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Rob - Mon, May 2, 2016, 10:50 P
Town Meeting Saturday May 7th
Money is for asbestos removal. Amazed that this hasn't already been done. Not much can be done to the building until that is safely removed. Trying to tear down the building with the asbestos still in would make all of it hazardous waste. Big liability issue.
(and we won't mention asbestos and burning in the same sentence)
 
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MikeNaughton - Mon, May 2, 2016, 8:28 P
Town Meeting Saturday May 7th
"They should have let it burn to the ground." Um, Stash, those buildings are mostly brick. Brick doesn't burn.

"Look at the $$$$ that would have been avail. for the schools and DPW building." Okay, I'll bite . . . or, rather, look.But what am I looking at? How many $$$$? You're the one making the suggestion, you tell me.

The way I see the situation is this: through a series of events, not all of them under the town's control, but definitely including (IMHO) some poor decisions by town officials (some, not all), we've been left with a big, expensive problem. We can't do anything about the past (except, I hope, learn from it), but going forward there's now a developer with a track record who is seriously interested in part of this site, but another part will definitely need to be removed, and that will be the town's responsibility. IMHO, we haven't had any good options for the Strathmore complex in a long time, but this is our best choice going forward. I'm from Precinct 2, but Stash, I'm going to respectfully disagree with you on this one.
 
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stash - Mon, May 2, 2016, 5:11 P
Town Meeting Saturday May 7th
Yup, lets DUMP a third of a million into the shi# pit called Strathmore. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH people. They should have let it burn to the ground. Look at the $$$$ that would have been avail. for the schools and DPW building. Half a million sure would have looked nice in the bank.................I am asking my Prec 2 folks to vote it down.
 
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Rob - Sat, Apr 30, 2016, 7:22 P
Town Meeting Saturday May 7th
As a town meeting member I am always curious if other members of our community have any specific feelings on any of the articles that are on the agenda?
 
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Rob - Wed, Apr 6, 2016, 7:54 A
Tonights Comedy Show
I think the damages that can be caused by any president can by minimized by who gets elected to congress. Here we don't have a lot to say who gets elected in other states but we need to make sure our votes matter here.
 
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Maureclaire - Wed, Apr 6, 2016, 1:58 A
Tonights Comedy Show
Nothing to fear from Trump. He and Bernie are merely tools in this farce. Hillary will be installed... that was decided way back. And, she is FAR worse than Trump could EVER be.
 
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MikeNaughton - Wed, Mar 2, 2016, 10:23 P
Front Page Wall Street Journal?
Doesn't look like it from this:

http://www.wsj.com/itp
 
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stash - Wed, Mar 2, 2016, 5:38 P
Front Page Wall Street Journal?
Be kind of cool if any one that gets it could post it on the site :-)
 
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vnatale - Wed, Mar 2, 2016, 4:47 P
Front Page Wall Street Journal?
I was told that today's front page of the Wall Street Journal has a picture of voting at Montague's precinct #2 (where I vote)??!!

Vinny
 
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stash - Wed, Mar 2, 2016, 1:31 P
Vote
We have decided to only vote in the LOCAL elections, where OUR votes would matter. Nothing against our Town Clerk and crew of polls workers, BUT when the results elsewhere show winners and losers I doubt the Town Of Montague would change things AT ALL. Changing to independent didn't matter as we took Democratic ballots to vote for Bernie. Looks like we are going to be stuck with Trump and Clinton. If that's the choice ,I'm going with Trump. Hillary has way tooooooooooo much history of not being an straight shooter. Just OHO......
 
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stash - Wed, Feb 24, 2016, 9:22 A
Tonights Comedy Show
He scares the crap out of me also. .I went independent for the first time ever just so I could vote for whichever repubumlikin was running against the lout.
 
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mik - Wed, Feb 24, 2016, 7:17 A
Tonights Comedy Show
Wow Stash. Amazing. Bernie Sanders? Very cool.

Yeah, after last night's primary, there were Trump supporters wearing KKK robes. And he's in the lead. Unbelievable in this day and age. Scary.
 
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stash - Sat, Feb 13, 2016, 10:28 P
Tonights Comedy Show
Watching the repubs crapping all over each other. Any one voting for ANY of those turds should not be allowed to breed. Come on Bernie..... I predict a Bernie/Warren ticket. If it's Hillary, I'll vote for the independent ..
 
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Rob - Tue, Jan 26, 2016, 7:32 A
New Law From God Thinks
There is a house on Rt 47 in Sunderland that has a sign that says "This eyesore is financed by Bank of America" makes me wonder what the story is on this and how some bankers can sleep at night?
 
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MikeNaughton - Mon, Jan 25, 2016, 7:35 P
New Law From God Thinks
Agreed, basically, but I would fault Obama in at least two areas:

* His apparent disdain for the sort politicking that is necessary to actually get things done in Washington. I mean, seriously, he should have known -- or learned fast -- that that's how it works, and if you don't want to play the game, then don't try so hard to get on the team.

* The fact that top people in the banking, insurance, and ratings industries didn't go to jail after the banking crisis. Seeing "The Big Short" just reminded me of how criminal (or, at least, criminally incompetent -- which is kind of the same thing) some of those people were. And the federal government should have made sure that anyone who was actually living in one of those houses and willing to make reasonable payments should have been able to stay there. The wrong people got hurt, and it still pisses me off every time I think about it.
 
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mik - Mon, Jan 25, 2016, 10:31 A
New Law From God Thinks
Right. I saw that after I posted. Oh well. I should have read the whole thread before posting.

And, yes. Republicans universally shout that "Obummer has done NOTHING" and other things like "He's destroying the country and taking us all down with him"...

From my view, we're in far better shape than we were 8 years ago, despite an unprecedented, coordinated, paid for by third-party money stone wall campaign from the republicans. Truly un-American. If they would only just take a step back and assess the behavior on its own.

Is Obama perfect? No where near. He is no "God" or "Messiah" as republicans like to taunt Obama supports with. (And frankly, that's childish.) But he has done a remarkable job under duress. And that counts for something in my book.
 
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MikeNaughton - Sun, Jan 24, 2016, 9:32 P
New Law From God Thinks
Mik - just to clarify, Stash was replying to my question about this post from Maureclaire:
http://www.montaguem...&cs=6&ID=38528&g=201
which actually isn't about Bernie Sanders; it's about a claimed connection between the 2nd Amendment and slavery.

Nice post, though . . . . of course, I agree with what you say. :-) GW Bush made a possibly unfixable mess in the middle east as well as practically bringing down the world's financial system. Obama got no help at all from Republicans in trying to fix any of that, and given that I think he did an okay job of making things better -- though he certainly made some mistakes. But the idea that any US President can just snap their fingers and make things happen is delusional.
 
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mik - Sun, Jan 24, 2016, 12:00 P
New Law From God Thinks
Boy. Every once in a while I feel the need to jump in to clear the misconceptions held by my fellow man.

Ok, where to start...

> WOW. A black report blaming the whites.

I'm guessing Bernie said something about #BlackLivesMatter, and of course that riles up the non-black peanut gallery. Tired of hearing about how privileged we are? Sorry. It's the times we live in.

> Watching the Dumbocrat horse and pony show. Comedy at its best.

My guess is you haven't watched a Trump rally. And now, he's been endorsed by that mop head Sarah Palin? Good lord! How do you not literally LAUGH OUT LOUD to that?

> We do not need another possible 8 years of the present crap. They will bankrupt the country, hell Nobama has us on a downhill slide now.

The present crap has pulled us out of the Great Recession. The National Debt is down, and unemployment is down. Things are not perfect, but after 8 years of Junior Bush, we were on the edge of the cliff with our feet dangling down. I mean, seriously. How do you say that things are is worse than they were 8 years ago? That's just delusion.

> Thank goodness there is a chance the republicans can take over.

Be careful of what you wish for. A few of those candidates will mandate biblical changes to our Constitution. Palin actually inquired into how to ban books in her state. Is that an open and free society?

http://abcnews.go.co...ry?id=5766173&page=1

In the mean time, Trump publicly said that he could shoot someone and not lose support. That's how popular he thinks he is. The man is insane.

> The pres. really scared the Chinease (sp) over cyber stealing didn't he? He shook his finger and got the finger in return.

Right. The president of the United States should have the power to frighten hackers in a country on the other side of the planet who also has nuclear weapons (and, btw, that's pronounced new-clee-er, not new-cue-lar).

Have you listened -- and I mean actually listened, without your Fox News sunglasses on -- to what Bernie Sanders is saying these days? I CHALLENGE you to watch this video of him on the Morning Joe show. Keep in mind that Joe is a republican.



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d7wuTs-UcmE

Bernie wants to expand social security. That should interest you. Trump and the others want to get rid of it.
 
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MikeNaughton - Tue, Jan 19, 2016, 10:31 P
New Law From God Thinks
O-o-o-kay Stash, let me try one more time.

I asked "what do you think?", and you replied "WOW. A black report blaming the whites."

Sorry if I'm slow, but that seems like an irrelevant comment, so could you explain how it answers my question? Or, maybe better, could you try again to answer my question?

Thank you.
 
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