Vol. 19, No. 4,881 - The American Reporter - December 16, 2013



Peter O'Toole, one of the greatest actors of the 20th Century and star of the critcally acclaimed epic "Larence of Arabia, has passed away at the age of 81. "[A]n Irish bookmaker’s son with a hell-raising streak whose performance in the 1962 epic film “Lawrence of Arabia” earned him overnight fame and established him as one of his generation’s most charismatic actors, died on Saturday in London. His daughter Kate O’Toole said in a statement that he had been ill for some time." theNew York Times website announced on its homepage. O'Toole was nominated a eight times as Best Acror, but never won an Oscar. He was given one at the end of his career for Lifetime Achievment, however . (12/15/13, 11:43pm ET)     -- AR ONLINE --     Another icy storm pounded the northeastern United States Saturday and many oarts of the nation can expect to be blanketed with up to 12 inches of snow, according to weather.com. One casualty may be the pre-Christmas shopping spree enjoyed by many Americans as roads become too icy to navigate and cold weather makes parents want to keep the kids home. The storm has already killed four people and led to cancellation of 1,200 flights, the site said (12/14/13, 11:45pm ET)     -- AR ONLINE --     Al Qaeda Plot to Bomb Airport Terminal Foiled Even as Senate Republicans engage in time-consuming delay tactics to avoid confirming the new Director of Homeland Security, the FBI has broken up a man's plot to explode a car full of explosives at a Kansas airport. "An avionics technician from Kansas was arrested Friday as he planned to drive a vehicle full of explosives into a terminal at Wichita's Mid-Continent Regional Airport, authorities said. Terry Lee Loewen, 58, was charged with one count each of attempting to use a weapon of mass destruction, attempting to damage property and attempting to provide support to terrorist group al-Qaida. Authorities said he was trying to support "al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula," the Associated Press reported Friday. (12/13/13, 4:47pm ET)     -- AR ONLINE --     1 Shot, 1 Dead at Colo. High School: A student at Arapahoe High School in Centennial, Colo., just a few miles from where the Columbine High School massacre occurred, shot another student - 17-year-old Clair Davis, who reportedly risked her own life trying to stop the gunman and is now in a coma - just after noon Friday before turning his shotgun on himself and committing suicide, according to news reports on CNN from the scene. Clare Davis is said to be hospitalized in critical condition. The school is just 8 miles from the sitee of the 1999 Columbine High School rampage in Littleton, Colo. (12/13/13, 6:34pm ET)     -- AR ONLINE --     Teen DUI Driver Had 'Affluenza': A 16-year-old Texas boy whose drunken driving led to the deaths of four people standing beside their disabled car when he drove into them last June was set free Thursday after he was found to be a victim of "affluenza" - a novel disorder marked by excessive wealth and a "spoiled" upbringing. He had three times the blood alcohol level that signifies intoxicated driving when he was arrested three hours after the crash. He was sentenced to 10 years probation after his wealthy father promised to spend $400,000 a year to keep him in an alcohol and drug recovery facility in California. He could have been sentenced to 20 years in prison. Due to his age, the boy was not identified. Widespread outrage followed the sentencing (12/13/13, 12:38pm ET)     -- AR ONLINE --     Death, Delays and Ice Stalk the Nation: Two back-to-back icy winter storms struck most of the United States and Washington, DC, on Saturday, Sunday and Monday, leading to the cancellation of some 5,700 airline flights, at least 15 deaths and countless highway accidents. "Anchorage, Alaska, has been warmer than St. Louis and Denver. 'It's very unusual,' CNN meteorologist Dave Hennen said. 'This literally spreads across the entire U.S., and we're 12 days from the official start of winter.'" In addition, two adults and four children who went hiking through the snow in northern Nevada have not been located since they started out on Sunday. "James Glanton, 34, and Christina MacIntee, 25, are missing, along with a 10-year-old, two 4-year-olds and a 3-year-old, the Pershing County, NV, Sheriff's Office said. The six set out Sunday for Seven Troughs mountain range and haven't been seen since. Fears for their safety grew as the temperature was expected to hit 6 below zero Tuesday night," CNN reported Monday night. [Update: The family was found alive well Monday at their overturned car at the bottom of a canyon. News reports say they heated rocks and placed them in their Jeep to keep warm] "At least 15 people have died because of the weather, mostly in traffic accidents. Eight died in Oklahoma alone, including a 6-year-old who fell through ice on a creek in Tulsa and men who died in house fires in Westville and Tulsa," CNN said. Meanwhile, as much of the nation shivered in freezing temperatures, unseasonably warm weather in the low 80s continued to keep South Florida warm from Gainesville to Miami. (12/10/13, 2:11am ET)     -- AR ONLINE --     Detained American Freed: The 85-year-old American man at the center of a firestorm of diplomatic hostility has been freed by North Korea and is now on his way home, CNN reported Friday. "Merrill Newman - the 85-year-old American detained by North Korean authorities earlier this fall - has been 'deported,' North Korea's state news agency KCNA reported early Saturday. His son announced late Friday that he is on his way home to the United States. 'We are absolutely delighted to confirm that Merrill Newman is on his way home,' Jeff Newman said. A senior Obama administration official said soon after the North Korean announcement that U.S. authorities have Newman 'in hand.' State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf subsequently tweeted that U.S. Embassy officials met Newman 'at the airport in Beijing and provided all appropriate consular assistance.' Video showed him "smiling as he walked past a cavalcade of reporters through the Chinese capital's airport," the news network said. (12/7/13, 12:52am ET)     -- AR ONLINE --     Nelson Mandela Dies: After months of hospitalization and then a brief sojourn at home, the great Nelson Mandela has died. He was a famed Nobel Peace Prize co-winner who led South Africa out of apartheid as he spent 27 years in a South African jail for his activities on behalf of freedom, equality and democracy there. He died at his home in the Johannesburg suburb of Houghton, South Africa, at the age of 95. South African President Jacob Zuma announced Mandela's death in a somber late-night address Wednesday. "What made Nelson Mandela great was precisely what made him human," said Zuma. "We saw in him what we seek in ourselves." "The famed anti-apartheid revolutionary and politician who served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999 died Thursday after a long bout with a lung infection," an AOL news report said. "The would-be South African president spent 18 of his 27 prison years on Robben Island confined to a small cell with the floor for a bed and a bucket for a toilet. During his imprisonment, Mandela was forced to do hard labor in a quarry and was allowed one visitor a year for 30 minutes," the online Huffington Post reported (12/5/13, 5:45pm ET)     -- AR ONLINE --     Russian Diplomats Defraud Medicare: At least 49 Russian diplomats assigned to the United Nations and their New York City consulate have defrauded Medicare of $1.5 million in benefits for "pregnancies, births and postnatal care," the New York Times reports today. "These were no ordinary Russians. They were diplomats posted to New York City, and their wives, accused of fraudulently applying for Medicaid benefits over the past nine years. Prosecutors characterized the scheme as an audacious swindle of the federal health benefits program for the needy, orchestrated by officials in the Russian Consulate in New York and its mission to the United Nations," the Times said after the office of Preet Bharara, the U.S. Attorney in Manhattan, announced the charges. “Diplomacy should be about extending hands, not picking pockets in the host country,” said Bharara. "A criminal complaint unsealed in Federal District Court said that in addition to the defendants, 11 of whom still live in the United States, dozens of other conspirators not named had received illegally obtained benefits," the Times said. The paper also reported that an official in Russia's foreign ministry faulted the United States for announcing the charges publicly, saying that if it had chosen to do so, Russia could have revealed "many claims against American diplomats in Moscow... [W]e don’t air them out in public," the official said. "There are dozens of situations where we can make a complaint against them.” (12/5/13, 9:54pm ET)     -- AR ONLINE --     Heisman Contender Not Charged: Unbeaten Florida State's Heisman Trophy contender Jameis Winston will not be charged with sexual assault, the State's Attorney office in Tallahassee, Florida's capital and home to FSU, said Thursday. "State Attorney Willie Meggs said Florida State quarterback Jameis Winston will not be charged after his office completed its investigation of sexual assault accusations. "No charges will be filed against Winston in this case," said Meggs, who added that the timing of the decision had nothing to do with "Heisman demands or football schedule," the SportingNews.com website reported Thursday morning. Meggs said his office lacks proof that the Dec. 7, 2012, sexual encounter "was not consensual" (12/5/13, 3:38pm ET)     -- AR ONLINE --     4-Year-Old Gave Oral Sex? A Florida charter school principal could be charged with felony neglect after parents complained that a 4-year-old boy performed oral sex on other 4-year-old boys on a playground at the Imagine charter school in Lakewood Ranch, Fla., according to the Bradenton Herald, a McClatchy Newspapers daily. The principal of Imagine Schools Lakewood Ranch "could face felony neglect charges after reports surfaced that a 4-year-old at the school had performed oral sex on other 4-year-olds on school grounds," the paper reported today. Manatee Co. Sheriff's Office spokesman Dave Bristow said the case has been referred to the State Attorney's office here, and that the children involved would not be charged with any crime due to their age. Some parents and school officials questioned whether the alleged acts ever actually occurred. (12/5/13, 2:6pm)     -- AR ONLINE --     625,225 Unemployed Floridians Wait for Checks: It's not known exactly how many of Florida's unemployed (625,225 persons, as of October 2013) aren't getting their state checks due to a less-celebrated website crash. The "Connect" website run by the state's Dept. of Economic Opportunity has been having problems since October, users say. "It just puts you in a vicious circle where nothing seems to ever get processed; they just say it's still pending," John Whiteside told WTSP News 10 in Tampa. Whiteside finally got his back checks yesterday; his wife works for WSTP, a CBS affiliate. Latesha Sumpter of Tampa told News 10 that her name has apparently been deleted from the database. "I'd be homeless right now if I was depending on unemployment because I've gotten nothing," she says. "I can't even get a person on the phone. I just get, 'Due to the high call volume try your call again later," she told the station (12/3/13, 11:57pm ET)     -- AR ONLINE --     Detroit Bankruptcy Approved: Pensions could be cut and Detroit will be unburdened of billions in debt under a Federal Bankruptcy Court ruling ruling today. "Detroit is eligible to shed billions in debt in the largest public bankruptcy ever in the United States, a federal judge ruled Tuesday, while also finding that the public pensions could be reduced during reorganization despite a provision in Michigan’s Constitution," the New York Times reported Tuesday afternoon.(12/3/13, 2:31pm)     -- AR ONLINE --     Deadly Train Crash in New York A commuter train crash at the height of the holiday shopping season took four lives Sunday when the train derailed and threw passengers from its cars. One of those killed was a man scheduled to help raise the annual Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center. "More than 60 passengers were injured, 11 critically, after all eight cars of a Metro-North train veered off the tracks Sunday near the Spuyten Duyvil ["Devil's Whirlpool" in Dutch] station along the Hudson River, officials said. Three of the four dead were thrown from the train," the New York Times reported Sunday. A total of 63 people were reportedly injured. New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, the Metropolitan Transportation Agency and the National Transportation Safety Board will investigate, reports say. (Update: An "event box" recovered from the scene showed the train was going 82mph at the time of the crash, "far too fast" for the curve it was rounding, the NTSB said Monday afternoon (12/2/13, 9:37pm) (12/2/13, 12:38am ET)     -- AR ONLINE --     College football games that will rank among the most exciting ever played ended in heartbreak for No. 1 Alabama, defeated by Auburn 34-28 after an incredible final-second 100-yard return of a blocked field goal attempt, and in joy for No. 3 Ohio State, which remains undefeated after Michigan made a gutsy but unsuccessful points-after-touchdown try for two points and fell to Ohio State, 42-41 (12/1/13, 12:47am ET)     -- AR ONLINE --     Fixes to the Healthcare.gov website will allow it to handle 50,000 visitors at once by Dec. 1, Administration officials say, fulfilling a vow by President Obama that may remove an embarrassing stain on the escutcheon of the Affordable Care Act Congress passed in 2010, after the site failed to work properly on its Oct. 1 launch. (12:31pm ET, 11/30/13)    -- AR ONLINE --     Abandoning their pretense of super patriotism, Fox News on Tuesday revealed that some terror suspects held at Guantanamo Bay were "flipped" - i.e., recruited as US agents - by the Central Intelligence Agency and sent back to their countries of origin. The released suspects are now likely to be killed by terrorist organizations they may have infiltrated on behalf of the United States (3:47pm ET, 11/27/13)    --AR ONLINE--   Free schooling: A new online "school" called the Khan Academy (www.khanacademy.com), backed by Microsoft founder Bill Gates, posts 2,400 video tutorials on everything from algebra to zero-based budgeting, all for free. Harvard and MIT are also embracing the new paradigm (4/6/2012, 9:12pm)    --AR ONLINE--   

Click headlines on the ticker to go to sources.

'Black Santa Claus'
A Melody That's Haunted Me for 30 Years

by Joe Shea

Fighting the False Majority

The Supermajority Creates Its Own Kind of Tyranny

by Joe Shea

The Indomitable Nelson Mandela
His Courage Freed a Nation

by Randolph Holhut

Health Care, Vermont-Style
When Your Lawmakers Want Obamacare to Work, It Does
by Randolph Holhut

The High Cost of Low Wages
There's a Price to Pay for Paying Less
by Randolph Holhut

Tears Too Late
50 Years of Living With the Spirit of JFK
by Joe Shea

When TV News Came of Age
How the JFK Assassination Changed the Media Landscape Forever
by Randolph Holhut

First Elections First
Progressives Have to Get Past 2014 Before They Worry About 2016
by Randolph Holhut

Why AM Radio is Dying

Shrill Voices, Poor Audio Quality Are Killing an American Icon

by Randolph Holhut

The Real Dr. King

MLK's Key Issues Have Been Forgotten by Those Who Praise Him

by Randolph Holhut

Below: AR'S Coverage of the Cold Fusion Revolution


Above: Motley Fool on the Fusion Future
Oilprice.com: Is Cold Fusion Entering the Final Stages?
Wired: Cold fusion conference demo raises hope for tabletop energy supply
The Roanoke Times: Explore an explosive new energy source
Washington Post: CrowdSourced: Wonkblog readers are really excited about cold fusion
Theoretical Feasibility of Cold Fusion According to the BSM - Supergravitation Unified Theory
Forbes.com: Psstt! Want An E-Cat LENR Generator? For Free?
Engineering News: Interest in LENR device resurges as independent report is released
Cold fusion reactor independently verified, has 10,000 times the energy density of gasoline
At Last, Andrea Rossi's E Cat Reactor is Independently Validated
Forbes Magazine: Finally! Independent Testing Of Rossi's E-Cat Cold Fusion Device:
Maybe The World Will Change After All
A Discredited Physicist Mounts a Careless Attack on Cold Fusion
From Gizmodo.com: "NASA's Basement Nuclear Reactor"

LENR: "The Beginning of An Incredible Future"
U. of Ill. Prof. George Miley Unveils Plan For a Co-Generation 'Cold Fusion' Generator
'Cold Fusion' Device That Cracks Humidity for Hydrogen Debuts at the HHO Games (Video)
European Patent Office Grants LENR/Cold Fusion Patent to Francesco Piantelli
News: A Full Video Archive from the 17th International Conference On Cold Fusion
Foreign Policy Journal: Weighing In On Cold Fusion
Forbes Magazine: The Unintended Consequences of Cold Fusion
First 'E-Cat' Cold Fusion Reactors Go On Sale November 1 in Italy
How Scientific Fraud at MIT Sank the First Cold Fusion Revolution
NASA Chief Scientist Dennis Bushnell Has Kind Words For the Future of Cold Fusion
Which Scientists Are Currently Working on Cold Fusion Devices?
British Scientists Say They Have Synthesized Gasoline From Air
November 2012 Popular Science Magazine Devoted 10-Page Spread to Cold Fusion
After Decades, US Patent Office Grants First Cold Fusion Patent to U. of Ill. Scientist
Obama Executive Order on Energy Efficiency Could Enable Cold Fusion Funding
US News & World Report Hails Debut of Commercial Cold Fusion Devices
Cold Fusion Documentary "The Believers" Wins Raves at Chicago Int'l Film Festival
Father of Cold Fusion, Martin Fleischmann, Dies on Eve of Its Adoption Boeing, DARPA, NASA, Siemens, ENEA, National Instruments Exploring LENR's Potential Music: "The Birth of Cold Fusion [Anthem to Defkalion"]," by Nikos Xanthoulis
HSPACE="20%" VSPACE="20%" CELLSPACING="20" CELLPADDING="20"><
Higgs Boson - or $9 Billion Bull?

by Hank Mills

The U.S. Spent $531 Million on the Higgs Boson,
But Cold Fusion Will Change the World

An American Reporter Exclusive
Who's Behind the War on Cold Fusion?

by Josh Mitteldorf

The Suppression of Scientific Research Deprives Humanity of a Miracle

The Power That Is

by Joe Shea

Cheap, Non-Polluting Hydrino Reactors Will Soon Be in Homes

Free at Last!

by Joe Shea

6 Scientific Teams Validate Hydrino Theory for Unlimited Electricity From Water

"...Your novel is smart, has humour and fantasy and shows that you have understood the spirit of my work!"

                                                    -- Igr. Andrea Rossi, Inventor of the E-Cat

. . . A perfect 'kick back, relax, and read' story for this long cold fusion summer. The story lends insight to intrigue, providing repast to the tension this summer's suspense brings. Its cleverly crafted plot takes the reader thru a few twists and turns in the world of politics, cold fusion, and national security. Enjoy!"

                                                   -- Greg Goble, COLDFUSIONNOW.org

From NASA, a New Form of Clean Energy - and a New World?
NASA Hails New Form of Clean Energy Called LENR -
But Was It 'Swiped' From Italian Andrea Rossi?

by Joe Shea
Invention of the Millenium
Power For the People
Freezing Recently? Italian Inventor Andrea
Rossi Has the Answer Only NASA and the AP Know

by Joe Shea
Inventor Andrea Rossi
His E-Cat may change the world
<
NASA Discovery I
The promise of unlimited clean energy
Fleischmann-Pons
BBC Exposes MIT's Science Fraud

AR LIVE via BAMBUSER
Chat with Editor Joe Shea
Riptide
Author Tim Dorsey Talks to AR's Ted Manna

AR ARCHIVED

Life
The Joy of Shabbat
by Cindy Hasz

Mom
The Mink Coat
by Joyce Marcel

Heritage
Green Roots
by Constance Daley

Question of the Day: With profit margins the highest since 1930, why are corporations sitting on $2 trillion in savings instead of spending on jobs, innovation, marketing, research and manufacturing?!

Observer

Senate Republicans will talk and talk - as they usually do - as Senate Democrats try to fill vacancies with President Obama'[s nominees, including one as Director of Homeland Security.

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The Willies
'BLACK SANTA CLAUS' ECHOES DOWN THE YEARS

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 16, 2013 -- Almost 35 years ago, I somehow lucked into a dozen or more LPs that had some rockin' songs I'll never forget. One of my favorites was "by an unknown band called Roxy music, and the song was "High Rolling Women," one of the catchiest tunes I ever heard. [MORE]

The Willies
FIGHTING THE 'FALSE MAJORITY'

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 14, 2013 -- Republicans are reportedly "furious" that their reliance on the old Senate rules on filibusters has been stymied by the Democrats, who want the rules to conform to the oldest principle of democracy - majority rule. [MORE]

On Native Ground
NELSON MANDELA, THE INDOMITABLE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- On the very short list of great figures of the 20th Century, Nelson Mandela stands tall. [MORE]

On Native Ground
OBAMACARE DONE VERMONT-STYLE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I got signed up for my Obamacare last week. [MORE]

On Native Ground
THE HIGH COST OF LOW WAGES: THE BILL IS COMING DUE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The holiday shopping season has begun, and more stores than ever are opening on Thanksgiving to take advantage of the consumer frenzy. [MORE]

The Willies
IT'S NEVER TOO LATE

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., Nov. 22, 2013 -- The tears came Monday, 50 years late. I was watching the familiar video of President John F. Kennedy's final hours, and it was in the faces of the people outside where I found my grief. [MORE]

On Native Ground
THE FOUR DAYS IN NOVEMBER THAT TV NEWS CAME OF AGE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Not long ago, I came across a photo book entitled "Stand By: NBC News." Published by the network's publicity department in 1961, it shows the news operation in all of its analog glory as it was swiftly adapting to covering the world at the dawn of the Kennedy years. [MORE]

On Native Ground
DEMOCRATS: DON'T WORRY ABOUT 2016 - UNTIL THEY WIN IN 2014

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- There are lots of Democrats who could be credible candidates for President in 2016. [MORE]

On Native Ground
CAN AM RADIO BE SAVED?

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I started my journalism career in radio in 1980, and it still occupies a nice place in my heart. [MORE]

On Native Ground
KEEPING IT REAL: MARTIN LUTHER KING'S PROGRESSIVE VISION

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The whitewashed, sanitized Martin Luther King Jr. was trotted out on Aug. 24 for the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. [MORE]

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Sometime in the next week or so, U.S. warships are going to launch cruise missile strikes against targets in Syria.

by Randolph T. Holhut

[MORE]

Editorial
WHAT HAPPENS IF IRAN ATTACKS ISRAEL?

by Joe Shea

Editorial
WHAT HAPPENS IF IRAN ATTACKS ISRAEL? [MORE]

On Native Ground
KEEPING IT REAL: MARTIN LUTHER KING'S PROGRESSIVE VISION

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The whitewashed, sanitized Martin Luther King Jr. was trotted out on Aug. 24 for the 50th anniversary of the Aug. 28,1963 March on Washington. [MORE]

On Native Ground
BILLIONAIRES WILL NOT SAVE JOURNALISM

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In the wake of the sale of The Boston Globe and Worcester Telegram & Gazette to Red Sox owner and hedge fund billionaire John Henry for $70 million in cash, and the sale of The Washington Post to Amazon.com founder and billionaire Jeff Bezos for $250 million, Bloomberg News columnist Megan McArdle recently asked, "Should we be worried that soon billionaires will own all our major news outlets?" [MORE]

On Native Ground
CAN THE FIRST AMENDMENT SURVIVE THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION'S ATTACKS ON WHISTLEBLOWERS?

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- While Bradley Manning contemplates the probability of a lifetime in military prison, and Edward Snowden gets a year in Russia to contemplate which nation unafraid of the bullying of the United States will grant him asylum, let us salute how these two whistleblowers changed the course of U.S. foreign policy for the good and forever. [MORE]

On Native Ground
GOP VOWS TO KILL OBAMACARE: WILL WE LET THEM?

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's hard to expect Congress to do anything substantive when one party has clearly stated its intention to not only do nothing of substance, but also not implement laws that it doesn't like. [MORE]

On Native Ground
HELEN THOMAS: A FEARLESS FIGHTER FOR A FREE PRESS

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Trailblazer. Role model. Inspiration. [MORE]

An AR Exclusive
IN LETTER, PRESIDENT OBAMA EXTOLS HEALTH CARE LAW, VOWS TO MEET CHALLENGES

by AR Staff

BRADENTON, Fla., July 19, 2013 -- In a personal letter to The American Reporter's Editor-in-Chief, President Barack Obama Friday extolled the virtues of his Affordable Health Care Act and vowed to meet the challenges the law is facing. [MORE]

Breaking News IN BOLD MOVE, PRESIDENT SPEAKS ON ZIMMERMAN VERDICT

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla. -- In an unscripted, unexpected and unprecedented talk with the media Friday in the White House Briefing Room, President Barack Obama told startled reporters that Trayvon Martin, the 17-year-old killed by Hispanic Neighborhood Watch volunteer George Zimmerman, "could have been me, 35 years ago." [MORE]

On Native Ground
IS RAIL SAFETY TAKING A BACK SEAT TO PROFITS?

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Moving crude oil by rail is nothing new. [MORE]

On Native Ground

STOPPING THE MILITARY-INDUSTRIAL-ESPIONAGE COMPLEX

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- When Daniel Ellsberg talks about whistleblowing, he speaks with more credibility than most Americans. [MORE]

On Native Ground
DEMOCRACY NEEDS WHISTLEBLOWERS

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Edward Snowden, the former National Security Agency contractor who exposed evidence of a massive covert surveillance program conducted by the U.S. and British government against its own people, is making the Obama Administration look more and more foolish by the day. [MORE]

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- One unintended consequence of all the

by Randolph T. Holhut

[MORE]

ON Native Ground
EDWARD SNOWDEN'S ACT OF COURAGE IS JUST THE BEGINNING

by Randolph T. Holhut

ON Native Ground
EDWARD SNOWDEN'S ACT OF COURAGE IS JUST THE BEGINNING [MORE]

On Native Ground
BLEEDING THE POOR TO FEED THE RICH

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If one in six Americans is having trouble getting enough to eat each day, wouldn't the right thing to do be to find ways to feed these people? [MORE]

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- According to all the climatologists, the Earth recently passed a significant signpost - the average

by Randolph T. Holhut

[MORE]

On Native Ground
ENDING AN ENDLESS WAR IS GETTING HARDER TO DO

by Randolph T. Holhut

On Native Ground
ENDING AN ENDLESS WAR IS GETTING HARDER TO DO [MORE]

Moore Tornado
DEVASTATION IN MOORE, OKLA., DEFIES DESCRIPTION

by Joe Shea

MOORE, Okla., May 20, 2013 9pm ET (Updated 7:03pm ET, May 21, 2013) -- A devastating tornado said to be two and a quarter miles wide struck the city of Moore, Okla., just south of Oklahoma City, and destroyed thousands of homes and killed at least 24 people, including nine children, mostly third-graders, seven of whom drowned in an elementaery school where they huddled for safety. [MORE]

On Native Ground
REPUBLICANS SEEK THE END OF THE 40-HOUR WORK WEEK

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Eighty-five years ago, the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) was signed into law by President Franklin D. Roosevelt. [MORE]

On Native Ground
OBAMA'S BAD BARGAIN ON SOCIAL SECURITY, MEDICARE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It would stand to reason that if you won a presidential election by a solid margin campaigning against cutting Social Security and Medicare - something that has wide support among Americans - that you wouldn't make that the cornerstone of the first budget proposal of your second term. [MORE]

Brasch Words
UNIVERSAL NEGLECT: A FAILURE TO PROTECT AMERICANS' DENTAL HEALTH

by Walter Brasch

BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- I received a letter from a friend this past March. [MORE]

On Native Ground
THE WEST EXPLOSION: A DISASTER THAT DIDN'T HAVE TO HAPPEN

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It had the misfortune of being overshadowed by the Boston Marathon bombing, but before it disappears down the memory hole, it's worth revisiting the April 17 explosion at a fertilizer plant in West, Texas, that killed 15 people, injured about 200, and destroyed a middle school, a nursing home, an apartment building and about 100 homes. [MORE]

Market Mover
WHY NO PANAMA HATS AT AMERICA'S TOP TRAVEL SHOW

by Mark Scheinbaum

WASHINGTON, March 10, 2013 -- Wouldn't you like to know how to view the historic and dramatic expansion of the Panama Canal? Or the scuba adventures in Portobelo's crystal clear waters? Perhaps you don't know about the spanking new skyline, nightlife, and world class restaurants of Panama City? [MORE]

The Willies
LET ISRAEL HIT SYRIAN CHEMICAL WEAPONS

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., April 25, 2013 -- It's extremely painful to revisit the issue of Israel's role in prodding the United States to go to war against Iraq based on the supposed possession by Saddam Hussein of chemical, biological and nuclear weapons, a premise we later learned was based on outright lies. [MORE]

On Native Ground
THE BOSTON BOMBING WAS A CRIME, NOT TERRORISM

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I remember writing more than once, during the national collective freakout after the Sept. 11, 2011, attacks. that what happened in New York and Washington was a crime, not an act of war, and should have been treated that way. [MORE]

AR Editorial
Eric Garcetti for Mayor of Los Angeles

by Joe Shea

In perhaps my most impassioned speech to the Los Angeles City Council, Eric Garcetti sat as President of the 14-member body. I was speaking on a foolish proposal to require police to continue answering false alarms in very affluent neighborhoods where they constituted more than 90 percent of all the calls for help to the city's overburdened 911 syatem. [MORE]

The Willies
THE BIG, BIG WHY

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., Apr. 21, 2013, 5:09am ET -- While our national intelligence agencies are fully versed on it, most ordinary Americans have never heard of the Chechen resistance, or even of Chechnya, a Muslim-majority region of southern Russia. Now the long-simmering revolution there has seen two of its young, desperate warriors - desperate not for food or money, but for a life that has wider meaning - strike at our shores - fruitlessly, senselessly, yes, but they did strike. Why? [MORE]

On Native Ground
BOSTON: A CITY TOO TOUGH TO SCARE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The third Monday in April is Patriots' Day, a state holiday in Massachusetts that marks the day in 1775 when, in the words of Emerson, "By the rude bridge that arched the flood, Their flag to April's breeze unfurled/Here once the embattled farmers stood, And fired the shot heard round the world." [MORE]

The Willies
DEATH AT THE FINISH LINE

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., April 17, 2013 5:39am [Updated 2:17pm ET April 17] -- When a delayed IRA bomb exploded a few feet in front of me as I entered an already-bombed building in Northern Ireland in December 1981, I got a small taste of what people in Boston went through as two bombs exploded on Boylston Street in Copley Square at about 2:50pm ET and left three dead - including a little boy from Boston's tight-knit Dorchester community - and 181 injured, many grievously. [MORE]

On Native Ground
MARGARET THATCHER: THE GODMOTHER OF AUSTERITY

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- There's a reason why celebrations broke out around Great Britain to mark the death of Margaret Thatcher. There are only a handful of people in the history of the 20th Century who have wreaked as much havoc as she. [MORE]

AR Investigates
A FLORIDA COUNTY'S UNBROKEN CIRCLE OF CORRUPTION

by John Rehill

BRADENTON, Fla., April 11, 2013 -- Every town is ripe for corruption. [MORE]

Brasch Words
THE POLITICS BEHIND THE KILLING OF AMERICANS

by Walter Brasch

BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- About one-fourth of all Texans do not have health care coverage. Yet Gov. Rick Perry (R-Texas) opposes the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA), and vows to block the expansion of Medicaid in his state. [MORE]

On Native Ground
IT'S TIME FOR CONGRESS TO FOCUS ON JOBS AND GROWTH

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Remember when President Obama was supposed to destroy the American economy with his nefarious, radical, tax-heavy, over-regulated, anti-business economic policies? [MORE]

The Willies
READY TO LOVE

by Joe Shea

HARMONY CROSSING, Ga., April 5, 2013 -- When I decided on the spur of the moment last month to get surgery for a tumor in my colon, the last thing I thought about - actually, I never thought about it - was pain. I've thought about little else since. [MORE]

The Willies
AN AMERICAN'S ADVICE TO N. KOREA: GROW UP

by Joe Shea

HELEN, Ga., March 29, 2013 -- On this holiest day of the Christian year - not to mention the 50th Anniversary of my brother Billy's wedding to Ruby Claudette Atha, the holy occasion that brings me to this lovely faux-Bavarian North Georgia mountain town toinight - it feels almost bizarre to be writing about the threat and bluster coming from North Korea, whose new young leader has ordered his rocket batteries to ready themselves for war against the United States and its treasured ally, South Korea. Yet if Our Lord Jesus Christ died for anything, it was to stop the terrible waste of human life that can arise through dented or false pride, misused political power and an indifference to human suffering. [MORE]

Brasch Words
AMERICAM EDUCATION IS SIGNING ON THE DOTTED LINE

by Walter Brasch

BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The signing season has begun. [MORE]

On Native Ground
10 YEARS AFTER IRAQ INVASION, THE WORLD WAITS FOR JUSTICE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Ten years ago this week, the U.S. invasion of Iraq began. [MORE]

On Native Ground
THE MINIMUM WAGE SHOULD BE A LIVING WAGE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Walmart is in an advanced state of freakout right now. Why? Because sales have been way down at the nation's largest purveyor of cheap Chinese crap. [MORE]

Brasch Words
CONFESSIONS OF A JUICED JOURNALIST

by Walter Brasch

BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Before Congress creates yet another useless special investigation committee and subpoenas me, I wish to come clean and confess. [MORE]

On Native Ground
TIME TO BREAK THE SILENCE ON OBAMA'S DRONES

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Ten years ago this month, Americans were lied to by their government about the need to invade Iraq. [MORE]

On Native Ground
HOW TO BRING EQUITY BACK TO OUR ECONOMY

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- We know about the 42 million Americans that are still living in poverty, five years after the collapse of the financial markets in 2008. [MORE]

On Native Ground
IF YOU CAN'T WIN, CHEAT: THE GOP PLAN FOR THE ELECTORAL COLLEGE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Republicans have lost the popular vote in five of the last six presidential elections. The demographics of our nation are changing rapidly in ways that do not favor conservatives. And their political ideas are the ideological equivalent of a Superfund site. [MORE]

On Native Ground
CAN PRESIDENT OBAMA LIVE UP TO THE IDEALS IN HIS SECOND INAUGURAL ADDRESS?

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Sure, there wasn't as much euphoria as there was four years ago. How could there be? [MORE]

On Native Ground
THE DEBT CEILING TWO-STEP: WANNA DANCE?

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Some conservatives in Congress are outraged over the idea that the Obama Administration could thwart their plans to threaten blow up the economy if the President doesn't approve steep cuts to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid. [MORE]

American Essay
THE SOLUTION TO GUN CONTROL

by Joe Shea

MONROE, N.Y., Jan. 13, 2013 -- Two things can be said of most gun-bearing Americans: first, they are patriotic, in that they revere at least part of the U.S. Constitution; second, that they tend to be independent-minded, a quality that itself is profoundly infused with the shape of the American Dream. Thus, they are not America's enemies, even if they are often her critics. [MORE]

On Native Ground
CRIMINALIZING DISSENT: HOW THE FBI, DHS TRIED TO KILL OCCUPY

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It got buried under all the end-of-the-year hysteria over the so-called fiscal cliff, but the news that the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) worked with local police departments to coordinate a violent crackdown on the activist movement known as Occupy in the fall of 2011 deserves a closer look before it slips down the national memory hole altogether. [MORE]

On Native Ground
WHAT DID THE 'FISCAL CLIFF' ACTUALLY ACCOMPLISH?

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Now that the so-called fiscal cliff - a crisis that was manufactured by the least productive, least popular Congress in history - has been temporarily averted, what actually got accomplished?

  • Families earning more than $450,000 a year are going to see a modest increase in their income taxes, from 35 percent to the 39.5 percent level of the Clinton years.
  • Taxes on capital gains and dividend taxes for families in that income group will rise from 15 percent to the Clinton era-level of 20 percent.
  • The estate tax will be set at 40 percent for families in that income group, with a $5 million exemption that is indexed to inflation.
  • The Alternative Minimum Tax got permanently patched to avert automatic tax increases on middle class taxpayers.
  • The Earned Income Tax Credit, the Child Tax Credit, and the American Opportunity Tax Credit - three important tax credits for lower-income Americans - were extended for five years.
  • Scheduled reimbursement cuts to doctors under Medicare were postponed for one year, as were cuts to long-term unemployment benefits.
  • A temporary nine-month extension to the Farm Bill, necessary because Republicans failed to pass one last fall, that will avert a collapse of the current federal milk price support system and a doubling of retail milk prices;
  • And a two-month delay in automatic spending cuts.
[MORE]

On Native Ground
UNRAVELING THE LESSONS OF THE 2012 CAMPAIGN

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Some Americans are still expressing shock and disbelief over President Obama's winning a second term. [MORE]

The Transformation of America
Part VII: FIRST, TO KNOW; THEN, TO DO

by Ron Kenner

BALDWIN HILLS, Calif., Dec. 23, 2012 -- Inflation, long overrated, hasn't materialized. Other painfully obvious problems, like joblessness, have spent months on the back burner. And if we can't face the real issues, we won’t make a meaningful dent in them. [MORE]

The Transformation of America
Part VI: THINK BIG, OR DON'T THINK AT ALL

by Ron Kenner

BALDWIN HILLS, Calif., Dec. 23, 2012 -- In the overall mechanics of transformative government, attitude is so important! Not just a simplistic "can do" confidence but the simple belief that government might - holy cow! - actually solve or take the lead in solving or confronting a major problem. [MORE]

On Native Ground
TAKE THE PROFIT OUT OF GUNS AND VIOLENCE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- 2012 has been the worst year for mass shootings in U.S. history. [MORE]

American Essay
THEY CAN'T GO HOME AGAIN, BUT WE CAN STILL SAVE LIVES

by Ron Kenner

BALDWIN HILLS, Calif., Dec. 21, 2012 -- The Dec. 14 massacre of elementary-school children in Newtown, Conn., created headlines worldwide, yet thousands of other innocents nationwide die needlessly, routinely, with little notice. Many die prematurely because of inadequate regulation, oversight or enforcement. [MORE]

The Transformation of America
Part V: A CALL FOR FAITH IN THIS WORLD

by Ron Kenner

BALDWIN HILLS, Calif., Dec. 17, 2012 -- To end gun violence, to improve our schools, to rebuild our space program as soon as we can afford to, we need some other-worldly faith. But we also need a renewed faith - in this world. [MORE]

First Person
HOW CAN WE STAND WITH OUR GRIEF?

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 14, 2012 -- The phrase that comes to mind is, "We cannot contain our grief." [MORE]

On Native Ground
THE 'SHOCK DOCTRINE' AND THE SO-CALLED FISCAL CLIFF

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In her best-selling book, "The Shock Doctrine," author Naomi Klein outlined a process where business and political elites take a crisis, either real or created, use it to create a sense of panic and disorientation, and then push through economic policies that wouldn't merit consideration in calmer times. [MORE]

The Transformation of America, Part IV
NOW THAT THE ELECTION IS OVER...

by Ron Kenner

BALDWIN HILLS, Calif., Dec. 9, 2012 -- The election campaign is over and the real world presses on with its many crises. It is indeed a complex world, even if we sometimes appear to be living in an age of simple-mindedness and a new Age of Ignorance. Clearly we need to do a better job of assessing our landscape, from topless bars to topless mountains. [MORE]

On Native Ground
GLOBAL WARMING: THE ALARMS ARE GROWING LOUDER

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt., Dec. 6, 2012 -- An inescapable truth is staring the world's leaders in the face. [MORE]

The Transformation of America
Part III: TAKING EXCEPTION TO EXCEPTIONALISM

by Ron Kenner

BALDWIN HILLS, Calif., Dec. 5, 2012 -- In fairness, there has been some remarkable progress over the years, in maturing public attitudes toward minorities, women, gays, and toward the unfortunates in our society. [MORE]

On Native Ground
A BLACK FRIDAY FOR WALMART AS IT GETS A TASTE OF PEOPLE POWER

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Walmart doesn't want you to think it was a big deal, but the events of Black Friday - the walkouts, protests and civil disobedience actions that took place all across the United States on Nov. 23 - are the start of what could become one of the biggest victories for labor in American history. [MORE]

The Transformation of America
Part II: THE UNMENTIONABLE CONUNDRUM

by Ron Kenner

LOS ANGELES, Calif., Nov. 30, 2012 -- Sometimes our interests and their consequences are so fixedly contrary that a kind of moral paralysis occurs, so much so that it seems to make these matters impossible to discuss except in a partisan or advocacy context. These conundrums, in my phrase, become "unmentionables." [MORE]

Brasch Words
TRUCKIN' TO TREASON: THE HOT AIR OF SECESSION

by Walter Brasch

BLOOMSBURG, Pa., Nov. 27, 2012 -- A white Ford F-250 pick-up rumbled through town, a Confederate rebel flag flapping on a pole behind the cab; on the rear bumper were a pro-life and three anti-Obama stickers, the thrust of which two of which are not for a family newspaper. [MORE]

The Transformation of America
Part I: OBAMA'S MAJORITY MANDATES REAL PROGRESS

by Ron Kenner

LOS ANGELES, Calif., Nov. 25, 2012 -- The majority of the electorate made it clear in the 45th presidential election that they want neither a king nor watered-down half-measures that pass for progress, nor more of the same Congressional obstructionism that marked President Barack Obama's first Administration, but instead seek a genuine transformation of America that is peaceful, constructive and consistent with our constitutional values and heritage. [MORE]

On Native Ground
ROMNEY THE SORE LOSER

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Since this is a family Web site, there are certain words one cannot use to to describe the total gracelessness of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney in losing the election to President Obama. [MORE]

On Native Ground
A RIGHT-CENTER NATION? NO MORE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Having had a week to savor the decisive victories of President Obama and the Democratic Party, maybe it is safe to say that we are not a center-right nation anymore. [MORE]

On Native Ground
THE REAL VICTOR IN THE 2012 ELECTION? MATH

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In the end, it was the math. [MORE]

Campaign 2012
OBAMA DAY

by Joe Shea

COCOA BEACH, Fla., Nov. 6, 2012, 12:37am ET -- Today is Obama Day. In the distant future, when the history books present their record of this time, this nation may be judged by the decision we make at the polls today (and of course, due to early voting, have been making for two weeks or more). [MORE]

Campaign 2012
TOO CLOSE TO CALL

by Ted Manna

It's been a long, long slog through the swamp of election year politics for Americans this year. A Presidency that seemed to signal a supernova of unity, tolerance, and hope for the future imploded in the face of a crippling economic Armageddon. A stifling social polarization and an intractable governmental sclerosis spawned a black hole in the electorate's psyche. Bereft of pride and confidence, galaxies of accomplishments disappeared into the yawning maw. [MORE]

SUPERSTORM SANDY: THE LATEST WAKE-UP CALL ON CLIMATE CHANGE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It would be too facile to say that Hurricane Sandy was Mother Nature's revenge for the silence of Mitt Romney and President Obama on climate change during the presidential debates. Had one of those gentlemen taken our suggestion to address the issue, that might well have been a game-changing factor on Nov. 6. [MORE]

On Native Ground
GEORGE McGOVERN: THE LAST DEMOCRAT

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I think it is safe to call George McGovern the last Democrat. The former Democratic senator from South Dakota who died Sunday at the age of 90 certainly was the last truly liberal candidate the Democratic Party nominated for president. [MORE]

Campaign 2012
HOW TO WIN THE FINAL DEBATE

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 21, 2012 -- Before we hear a single word Monday night in the final debate of this presidential election season, we know that an awful lot of it will be about trade with China. The other big thing will be the Obama Administration's relationship with Israel and its handling of Iran's apparent attempt to develop nuclear weapons. [MORE]

On Native Ground
GLOBAL WARMING: THE MISSING ISSUE AT THE DEBATES

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt., Oct. 18, 2012 -- In Texas and Oklahoma, ranchers and farmers have joined with activists and Occupy Wall Street alums to try to stop the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline - designed to bring toxic and dangerous tar sands oil from Canada to U.S. refineries. [MORE]

Campaign 2012
ADVICE FOR OBAMA

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 15, 2012 -- Put yourself, as best you can, in President Obama's shoes for a moment. You've just lost a critical debate and seen that loss create a declining trend in your likelihood of being re-elected to the presidency. Your Vice-President has just dramatically upstaged you with a bravura performance in a debate against your opponent's running mate. Now you face another critical debate tomorrow night, so what do you do? [MORE]

On Native Ground
THERE'S NO DEBATE: ROMNEY IS A LIAR

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I listened to the first 2012 presidential debate on Oct. 3, and was surprised at how passive President Obama was and how aggressive Mitt Romney was. [MORE]

Campaign 2012
WHY OBAMA LOST

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 5, 2012 -- I saw the first 2012 presidential debate at the Lakewood Ranch Town Hall here, at a watch party organized by fellow Democrats. We watched and cheered the President and frequently laughed at Mitt Romney, particularly when his statements were given the lie by his videotaped "47%" remarks. Only when I got home and picked up the ringing telephone did I learn that some people thought Obama had "lost" the event. [MORE]

On Native Ground
HOPE HAS NOT LEFT THE BUILDING

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If you're an optimist, you can be comforted by the fact that, in Mitt Romney, the Republican Party has a candidate so unpopular that even with a huge money advantage, Romney cannot be sold to the American people as a plausible alternative to President Obama. [MORE]

The Willies
IT'S NOT THE STUPID ECONOMY, MITT

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 30, 3012 -- One reason Republicans and their presidential candidate, former Mass. Gov. Mitt Romney, are struggling against Democrats and President Barack Obama is that as a political football, the economy has become deflated. That is to say, to paraphrase a slogan of the Clinton era, "It's not the economy, stupid - it's about people." [MORE]

On Native Ground
AS GOP EMBRACES PLANTATION POLITICS, THE SOUTH RISES AGAIN

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt., Sept. 27, 2012 -- As our nation marks the sesquicentennial of the Civil War, it seems more than a little ironic that the Republican Party, the party of Lincoln that settled the issue of slavery in that bloody war, has completely given itself over to the forces that the party's founders defeated a century earlier. [MORE]

Campaign 2012
DON IMUS REFERS TO OBAMA AS 'THE PIMP WITH A LIMP'

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 27, 2012, 9:55am -- Fox News talk-show host Sean Hannity has been complaining lately about supposedly vicious remarks being made by Democrats in the course of the 2012 presidential campaign, but one by a controversial Mitt Romney supporter appears to have them all beat. [MORE]

On Native Ground
ONE YEAR LATER, THE SPIRIT OF OCCUPY IS STILL ALIVE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- A year ago this week, the Occupy movement was born in Zuccotti Park in New York. [MORE]

On Native Ground
IS THE 2012 ELECTION THE LAST GASP OF WHITE MALE PRIVILEGE?

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It has been said often this year, and I have been part of that chorus, that the 2012 election represents that last gasp of white male privilege in America. [MORE]

The Willies
CONNECTING THE DOTS IN MIDDLE EAST EVENTS

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 13, 2012 -- As a onetime foreign correspondent who wrote from places like Northern Ireland, Iran, Pakistan, India, Vietnam and the Philippines, I see the riots in Cairo, the assassination in Benghazi and the friction in U.S-Israeli relations as part of one picture: a portrait of the Middle Eastern world preparing for war between Iran and Israel. [MORE]

Campaign 2012
IN FLORIDA, VOTERS ARE STIRRED BY SPARKS OF THE OLD OBAMA

by Ted Manna

MELBOURNE, Fla., Sept. 9, 2012 -- President Barack Obama delivered a gritty message to a packed gymnasium of supporters Sunday afternoon at Florida Institute of Technology's Melbourne, Florida campus . The sun-kissed sky and sultry breeze off the Indian River did nothing to soften his tone. [MORE]

On Native Ground
YOU CAN'T NEGOTIATE WITH REALITY

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Summer vacation (for those lucky enough to still have them) is over, the kids are back to school, and now, we are finally entering the time when the political season gets serious and people start paying attention to the campaigns. [MORE]

The Willies
JERUSALEM PLANK VOTE MAY DERAIL DEMOCRATIC CAMPAIGN

by Joe Shea

CORDELE, Ga., Sept. 5, 2012 -- In an impressive if demeaning display of Israel's power to shape America's political destiny, the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte today was forced to adopt a once-discarded platform plank that names Jerusalem as Israel's capital over the objections of thousands of delegates. The short-lived battle over the issue threatens to derail the entire Democratic presidential campaign and alienate its most generous donors. [MORE]

On Native Ground
BIPARTISAN MADNESS AND THE NEED TO CUT MILITARY SPENDING

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- What is the definition of madness? [MORE]

Brasch Words
DON'T COUNT THE LABOR MOVEMENT OUT

by Walter M. Brasch

BLOOMSBURG, Pa., Sept. 3, 2012 -- Almost every conservative political columnist, pundit, commentator, blogger, and freelance bloviator has written about the decline and forthcoming death of the labor movement. [MORE]

Campaign 2012
ROMNEY OUT-DRAWS EASTWOOD IN AN APPEAL TO REPUBLICANS

by Joe Shea

HARMONY CROSSING, Ga., Aug. 31, 2012 -- Mitt Romney's speech to the 2012 Republican National Convention in Tampa was not among the great ones that conventions of both parties have heard in recent decades, but it did accomplish two important things: It enlarged the mental portrait most of us have of this quintessentially corporate man, and it made it seem possible that he could pull this country out of its economic morass. [MORE]

Campaign 2012
SPEECHES WE DIDN’T HEAR AT THE RNC

by Joe Shea

HARMONY CROSSING, Ga., Aug. 29, 2012 -- You could've knocked me over with a feather late last night when a Fox News hostess went to Chris Wallace, host of the network's flagship show, Fox News Sunday, and asked him what he thought of the evening's speeches by Ann Romney, wife of GOP nominee Mitt Romney, and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, whom many had wanted to run for president himself and who was a perennial favorite of conservatives as a potential vice-presidential pick for the Romney ticket. [MORE]

Brasch Words
ROMNEY TAX-RETURN DEBATE OPENS A WINDOW ON HIS SOUL

by Walter Brasch

BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- When a coven of buffoons and bigots disguised in the bodies of "birthers" figured that anyone with dark skin and a foreign name had to be born outside the U.S., Barack Obama provided a birth certificate, a state-certified copy of the "long form" that detailed he was born in Hawaii, which some birthers apparently think is a foreign territory, to a mother who was a natural-born U.S. citizen. [MORE]

On Native Ground
THE GOP KEEPS DOUBLING DOWN ON THE CRAZY

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt., Aug. 24, 2012 -- Republicans can be thankful for one thing this week. With all the fuss over the comments of Missouri Congressman Todd "Legitimate Rape" Akin, and his exposure of the party's retrograde position on abortion, no one is talking about Medicare. [MORE]

Reporting: London
JULIAN ASSANGE AT THE CENTER OF ANOTHER DIPLOMATIC FRACAS, THIS ONE BETWEEN GIANT BRITAIN AND TINY ECUADOR

by Chiranjibi Paudyal

LONDON, England, Aug. 16, 2012 -- Can a simple man destroy the diplomatic ties between nations? The answer is yes. The WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, who exposed U.S. diplomatic cable and purportedly defamed the most powerful country of the world. now has instigated a diplomatic debate and dispute about his future. [MORE]

On Native Ground
RYAN AND ROMNEY: THIS PAIR OF FRAUDS DESERVE EACH OTHER

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt., Aug. 20, 2012 -- Mitt Romney had options for his running mate. [MORE]

On Native Ground
TIME TO STAVE OFF THE WORST OF GLOBAL WARMING IS RUNNING OUT

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt., Aug. 10, 2012 -- July 2012 was the hottest month ever in the continental United States since modern record-keeping began in 1895, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). [MORE]

The Willies
TWO WHITE GUYS IN SUITS? NOT FOR THIS AMERICA

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., Aug. 12, 2012 -- Mitt Romney's choice of Rep. Paul Ryan as his Vice Presidential running mate for the GOP nomination is not likely to excite or surprise anyone. The Republicans propose to replace a man of color and a colorful Irishman with a pair of corporate statists whose ability to connect with ordinary people is in serious doubt. [MORE]

On Native Ground
ECONOMIC LAWS ARE NOT MADE BY NATURE, BUT BY MEN

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt., Aug. 7, 2012 -- It has receded so far into the mists of history that it almost seems like it never happened. [MORE]

On Native Ground
VOTER ID LAWS ARE THE REAL VOTING FRAUD

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt., Aug. 2, 2012 -- How do you win an election? [MORE]

Fresh Winds
THE ELUSIVE TRUTHS OF THE 2012 CAMPAIGN

by Ted Manna

MERRITT ISLAND, Fla., July 22, 2012 -- The suspension of political campaigning this weekend brought a respite as refreshing and sudden as a tropical squall sucking the heat and humidity out the Florida air. It was a welcome relief from the negative, misleading messages flooding the airwaves and the Internet. [MORE]

On Native Ground
MITT GETS SCHOOLED BY THE OBAMA CAMPAIGN

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The truth hurts, especially when it is cleverly presented in 30 seconds. [MORE]

On Native Ground
THE GOP IS WILLING TO DESTROY OUR ECONOMY TO WIN AN ELECTION

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's become as regular as the sun rising in the East - dismal U.S. unemployment figures come out, and the Republicans blame President Obama for the lackluster numbers. [MORE]

Analysis
BOSON OR BOGUS, BILLION-DOLLAR BULL?

by Hank Mills

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah -- The universe is a mysterious place, and we understand very little about how it works. Sadly, the challenges our civilization faces such as war, poverty, pollution, economic turmoil, and "black swan" events may not allow humanity to exist long enough to figure it out before our species goes extinct. If we are to learn how the universe works, breakthrough technologies like cold fusion (LENR) need to be pursued, instead of multibillion dollar projects such as the search for the Higgs Boson that will have very few real-world applications in the short-to-medium term.[MORE]

Exclusive
THE WAR AGAINST COLD FUSION

by Josh Mitteldorf

Editor's Note: This article is reprinted from OpEdNews with the gracious permission of the author and OpEdNews.com, where Josh Mitteldorf is Senior Editor.
[MORE]

On Native Ground
THE MORRILL ACT AT 150: MAKING HIGHER EDUCATION AVAILABLE TO ALL

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- One of America's best ideas celebrates its 150th anniversary this week. On July 2, 1862, President Abraham Lincoln signed into law what became known as the Morrill Act, after then-Rep. Justin Morrill, its principal author. [MORE]

The Willies
IF THIS WAS 2015, YOU'D STILL HAVE POWER

by Joe Shea

BARDENTON, Fla., July 3, 2012 -- Hundreds of thousands of Washington, Baltimore area and Virginia residents have endured stifling, 95+-degree heat without electricity for refrigerators, air conditioners and televisions as a July heat wave sweeps over the north Atlantic Seaboard - and they represent the last of at least four million people who were without power for days during the past week. [MORE]

On Native Ground
VERMONT PUSHES AHEAD WITH HEALTH CARE REFORM

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Now that the U.S. Supreme Court has upheld President Obama's Affordable Care Act, Vermont is plowing ahead with its efforts to establish a system of single-payer state health care where every resident will eventually be eligible for publicly-funded coverage. [MORE]

On Native Ground
DOING THE RIGHT THING FOR YOUNG IMMIGRANTS

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The cynical can say that President Obama's executive order on June 15 to end the deportation of college-age undocumented immigrants was election-year pandering to Latino voters. [MORE]

On Native Ground
WANT SOCIAL CHANGE? IT WON'T HAPPEN AT THE BALLOT BOX

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If the victory of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker in his recall election on June 6 teaches us anything, the lesson is that the Democratic Party cannot be counted upon to do what it takes to win an election. [MORE]

Brasch Words
FRACKING THE HELPLESS, PART 2: THE SNIPERS OF JERSEY SHORE

by Walter Brasch

JERSEY SHORE, Pa. -- Garder54 calls Kevin June "a real scum." LadyDawg4 calls him a "sleazeball." Proud2bMom calls him a "liar and a thief." [MORE]

On Native Ground
CAN OBAMA SURVIVE A MUDDLED ECONOMIC RECOVERY?

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The pundits called June 1 the worst day of Barack Obama's presidency. [MORE]

Market Mover
FOR THE EURO, THE END IS NEAR

by Mark Scheinbaum

HOUSTON, Tex., June 2, 2012 -- News that the two-year German bond has hit precisely 0% interest is the leading indicator that the Euro, the newly-created currency of 17 of the member-states of the European Union used by 332 million Europeans, will disappear from the global scene. As we know it, the Euro is likely to vanish in the middle of a weekend night, much like the Baltimore Colts snuck out of their home town to move to Indianapolis. [MORE]

On Native Ground
THE MOST IMPORTANT ELECTION OF 2012

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's not an exaggeration to say that the June 5 gubernatorial recall election in Wisconsin between incumbent Republican Scott Walker and Democratic challenger Tom Barrett is the most important election this year. [MORE]

On Native Ground
FIGHTING FOR CIVIL LIBERTIES IN AN AGE OF REPRESSION

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- A major blow for freedom was struck last week when a federal court judge in Washington issued a preliminary injunction blocking a provision in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that authorizes the military to jail anyone it considers a terrorism suspect anywhere in the world, without charge or trial. [MORE]

Market Mover
PANAMA CANAL EXPANSION: THE REWARDS ARE OUTPACING RISKS

by Mark Scheinbaum

COCOLI, Panama, May 29, 2012 -- Just the fourth and final phase remains to complete the gigantic expansion of the Panama Canal by the Panama Canal Authority (ACP), and the entire nation is feeling optimistic that the rewards in commerce and revenue will outstrip the huge financial risks the cpountry has taken. [MORE]

Breakthrough
AT LAST, HYDRINO REACTORS ARE CONCLUSIVELY VALIDATED

by Joe Shea

CRANBURY, N.J., May 23, 2012 -- In the lovely, quiet pastures of northern New Jersey where Edison and Einstein once reigned, Dr. Randell Mills has scored one of the greatest triumphs in scientific history, fellow scientists say: a way to use water vapor to produce any amount of cheap electricity. [MORE]

Breakthrough!
A NEW FORM OF ENERGY - AND A NEW WORLD

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., Jan. 12, 2011 -- The National Aeronautics & Space Agency (NASA) revealed today that it is working on a "new form of energy" that can transmutes common materials to a "different element" and that can replace fossil fuels for use in homes, space and other transportation systems and infrastructure. A patent for the work was filed by NASA in October. [MORE]

On Native Ground
WHAT HAPPENS TO A TWO-PARTY SYSTEM WHEN ONE PARTY WON'T GOVERN?

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In a play on the "hope and change" theme of Obama's 2008 presidential campaign, the Republican National Committee rolled out last week a new counter-slogan, "Hype and Blame 2012." [MORE]

On Native Ground
HOW WE'VE BECOME TWO AMERICAS: SEPARATE AND UNEQUAL

by Randolph T. Holhut

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. --The issue of income inequality in the United States may be receiving more attention with the rise of the Occupy movement and ongoing Congressional hearins, but Harvard professor and best-selling author Robert Putnam believes that most Americans are unconcerned about it. [MORE]

The Willies
EUROPE TURNS LEFT

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., May 6, 2012 -- Europe turned left on Sunday. Punishing both moderate parties, Greek voters turned to the far left and far right in rejecting them. In France, voters turned its presidency over to a Socialist for the first time in decades, this time to Francois Hollande. And over the past week, conservatives in Britain suffered "atrocious" losses in local city council elections. [MORE]

Market Mover
THIS HIGH SCHOOL 'SIGNING DAY' IS FOR THE ACADEMIC STARS

by Mark Scheinbaum

HOUSTON, Tex., April 30, 2012 -- Just looking around the Toyota Center, home of the NBA in Houston, made it clear the graduates of Yes Prep Public Schools were having a better year than the Houston Rockets. [MORE]

On Native Ground
CAN MITT ROMNEY TELL THE TRUTH?

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt., May 4, 2012 -- "To all of the thousands of good and decent Americans I've met who want nothing more than a better chance, a fighting chance, to all of you, I have a simple message: Hold on a little longer. A better America begins tonight." [MORE]

On Native Ground
A PHONY POSTAL CRISIS THREATENS RURAL MAIL SERVICE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The U.S. Postal Service is in a crisis. [MORE]

Brasch Words
SPEARING A TAX DEDUCTION

by Walter Brasch

BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- On a bright Monday morning, a day before tax returns were due, I bumped into my ersatz friend Marshbaum who was placing a change container at the Gas-High Mini-mart on Low Octane and Greed avenues. [MORE]

On Native Ground
A BUDGET FOR ALL: AN ALTERNATIVE VISION FOR AMERICA

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- A few weeks ago, Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives approved what Nobel-winning economist Paul Krugman called "the most fraudulent budget in American history." [MORE]

On Native Ground
FROM THE PENTAGON PAPERS TO WIKILEAKS: THE LEGACY OF WHISTLEBLOWERS

by Randolph T. Holhut

BRATTLEBORO, Vt. -- It has not been extensively reported, but the Obama Administration has retained and expanded upon many of the national security abuses that were initiated during the Bush Administration. [MORE]

AR 17th Anniversary Essay
COLLATERAL DAMAGE IN THE MARCELLUS SHALE

by Walter Brasch

Editor's Note: Dr. Walter Brasch is a veteran AR Correspondent whose contributions to this publication have been sustaining us for many years. His articles and books are a beacon of the reporter's craft. [MORE]

The Willies
CELEBRATING CHRIST

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla. APRIL 8, 2012 -- On this holiest day in Christendom, I think I'll ignore the traditional silence that journalists give to religious views in their news pages. [MORE]

On Native Ground
CONSERVATIVES PUT POLITICS AHEAD OF THE GOOD OF THE NATION

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In watching the circus that surrounded the three days of oral arguments before the U.S. Supreme Court on the constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act, one has to conclude that our country has finally jumped the shark. [MORE]

Brasch Words
THE LATE GREAT COMMONWEALTH: CATCHING UP TO THE GOP PRIMARY

by Walter Brasch

BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- It's the beginning of April, and that means I have just finished celebrating New Year's Eve, and will soon begin shopping for Valentine's gifts. In a month or two, I may even get around to toasting St. Patrick. [MORE]

On Native Ground
TRAYVON MARTIN DID NOT HAVE TO DIE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Compared to the rest of the nation, Vermont's gun laws are pretty lax. [MORE]

The Willies
THE WATCHMAN COMETH

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., March 26, 2012 -- Brains spilling out of skulls. Blood flowing down the sidewalk. Bottles arcing in the streetlights. Knives strapped to legs. Bullets smacking the wall, hitting cars and people. Suspects running, pursuers chasing them. Men falling dead in the street - I have seen it all in a decade of helping lead a Neighborhood Watch during the crack epidemic that devastated central Hollywood in the 1990s. Police said our group was a "national model," and we hold that testimonial close to our hearts. [MORE]

On Native Ground
A WAR WITHOUT END: PATRIARCHY VS. THE PILL

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Remember Sen. Ted Kennedy's description of the kind of America we would if Robert Bork, a conservative solicitor general for President Nixon during the Watergate years, was appointed to the U.S. Supreme Court? [MORE]

The Willies
ISRAEL, IRAN AND 'MORAL EQUIVALENCE'

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., March 19, 2012 -- The great American writer and philosopher Henry James coined the term "moral equivalence," and everywhere in the Middle East, the equation it describes is held fast to diplomats' hearts. The phrase is defined in Wikipedia thusly:

"Moral equivalence is a term used in political debate, usually to criticize any denial that a moral hierarchy can be assessed of two sides in a conflict, or in the actions or tactics of two sides. The term originates from a 1906 address by William James entitled The Moral Equivalent of War, subsequently published in essay form in 1910."
There's another, simpler and older saying, too: "What's good for the goose is good for the gander." [MORE]

On Native Ground
YOUNGER, SMARTER, MORE DIVERSE VOTERS ARE BAD NEWS FOR THE GOP

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If it looks to you that the Republican Party's primary voters this year seem older and whiter than usual, you're not mistaken. [MORE]

On Native Ground
THERE'S NO PLAN B: TIME'S RUNNING OUT FOR DEALING WITH CLIMATE CHANGE

by Randolph T. Holhut

DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The outbreak of another round of powerful and deadly tornadoes last week in the Midwest and South was unusual in one respect - you don't normally see storms like that in the first week of March. [MORE]

The Willies
REVOLUTION ON RADIO

by Joe Shea

BRADENTON, Fla., March 10, 2012 -- Some or all of the most vile of the lying, distorting, deceiving, extreme and dangerous talk-show hosts who populate conservative talk radio - Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck, Tom Leykis, Sean Hannity, Mark Levin, Todd Schnitt, Neal Boortz and Michael Savage - may have just lost their gravy train, Newsweek reports.
HONOR ROLL*[MORE]
  • Sleep Number
  • The Sleep Train
  • Quicken Loans
  • Legal Zoom
  • Citrix
  • Carbonite
  • ProFlowers
  • Tax Resolution
  • AOL
  • Bonobos
  • Sears
  • Allstate Insurance
  • Sensa
  • Bare Escentuals
  • Vitacost
  • Hadeed Carpet
  • Thompson Creek Windows
  • PolyCom
  • Service Magic
  • AccuQuote Life Insurance
  • Geico
  • John Deere
  • Stamps.com
  • St. Vincent’s Medical Center
  • Bethesda Sedation Dentistry
  • Cascades Dental
  • Philadelphia Orchestra
  • Goodwill Industries
  • Heart & Body Extract
  • Netflix
  • Downeast Energy
  • Capitol One
  • JCPenney
  • Matrix Direct
  • Reputation Rhino
  • Consolidated Credit
  • Constant Contact
  • RSVP Discount Beverage
  • Cunningham Security
  • Regal Assets
  • Freedom Debt Relief
  • Norway Savings Bank
  • Portland Ovations
  • The Girl Scouts of Oregon
       and SW Washington
  • O’Reilly Auto Parts
  • Aetna
  • TurboTax
  • New York Lottery
  • American Heart Assn.
  • Aquarium of the Pacific

    * These advertisers have
    dropped the Limbaugh show.
    51 others have asked
    to be taken off all "offensive" shows.

    Source: Radio-Info.com

  • Make My Day
    GOOGLE CATCHES PLAGIARIZING EDITOR

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- It's a weird badge of honor in the humor writing world to be stolen from. To have someone else take your work, stick their name on it, and claim they wrote it. To tell the world they thought of that story, spun the words together, and made those jokes about the Mayor's wife's nose job. [MORE]

    The Willies
    SUPER TUESDAY? SUPER FOR WHOM?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., March 6, 202012 -- If you could really scrape below the surface of objective reality and peer into the unconscious minds of Republicans who will vote today in 10 states for their choice of presidential nominees, which of the key issues in the campaigns of Mitt Romney, Ron Paul, Newt Gingrich and Rick Sanctorum would really be generative when they cast their votes? [MORE]

    Make My Day
    KARL THE CURMUDGEON WANTS A WRITERS FEUD

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Writer's don't have feuds anymore," said Karl. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE NEED TO BEAR WITNESS, NO MATTER THE COST

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. --These are dangerous times for journalists around the world. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    TANNESS, ANYONE? OSCARS AND THE BRONZE BEAUTIES

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- It's the end of February, and one of my friends is still sporting a summer tan. I know it's phony - and she knows I know it's phony - but I have long ago stopped teasing her about it. [MORE]

    An AR Appeal
    THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP! WE MADE IT

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, FLA., Feb. 27, 2012 -- We made it! [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE GOP STILL HATES WOMEN

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It shouldn't come as a surprise that that the far right is not just opposed to abortion, but contraception, too. Allowing women to have control over their bodies has never been allowed in their universe. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    AWAITING THE NEXT GREAT MISTAKE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Feb. 22, 2012 Updated 7:30pm ET-- The stage is set tonight in Mesa, Ariz., for mistakes that make political history. Will the candidates come through? [MORE]

    Passings
    GARY CARTER, 57, is IN THE TRUE HALL OF FAME

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    AMARILLO, Tex., Feb 17, 2012 -- When New York Mets catcher Gary Carter in 1986 was receiving $2.07 million per year for his baseball skills, he was the highest-paid baseball player of all time. Much of it was seed money for a legacy of charity and community service that transcended the diamond. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    VERMONT'S NUCLEAR BATTLE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt., Feb. 16, 2012 -- In an age where corporations are considered people, and the amount of power that they wield over our lives grows by the day, the state of Vermont has been fighting a seemingly impossible battle against Entergy Corp. over the future of the state's lone nuclear plant. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    WHAT MEN SHOULD CARRY

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- In the 1950s, men's fashion was pretty straightforward. There were certain things men wore or carried without question. They carried a handkerchief or pocket square, wore a hat, and dressed up for work. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    HOW TO BUILD A BRAND, AND KILL A BRAND

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- You don't have to be a Harvard Business School graduate to know that a brand is difficult to build and easy to destroy. The experiences of Chrysler and Susan M. Komen for The Cure Foundation are a good illustration of this principle. [MORE]

    Passings
    ANGELO DUNDEE, 90,LEAVES THE ARENA

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    HOUSTON, Feb. 2, 2012 -- The 20th Century's premier boxing trainer, Angelo Dundee, died yesterday at age 90 in Tampa after a lifetime in the spotlight of sports and the shadow of Muhammad Ali, and only one flaw is attributed to him. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    NATURE, NURTURE AND THE CONSERVATIVE BRAIN

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If you are a psychologist, and you want to start a fight, it's hard to go wrong with putting out a study that concludes that the combination of low intelligence and socially conservative beliefs makes a person more likely to give in to racism and prejudice. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE SPORTSWRITERS' SLUMBER PARTY

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- The players:: Five sportswriters - Sam, Chip, Tim, Len, and Max. The subject: Whether Peyton Manning will play for the Indianapolis Colts in 2012, or if he'll even play at all. [MORE]

    The Willies
    SEN. JOHN THUNE IS YOUR CANDIDATE, REPUBLICANS!

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- I am sorry that today Florida voters must decide among a group of men - who are all imperfect - which should be the next President of the United States. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    OKLAHOMA EDUCATORS HAVE A LOT TO LEARN

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- In 5,000 years, we have not changed how we teach school. We still have one teacher standing in front of a classroom, lecturing. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    SANCTIMONIOUS HYPOCRITES CAN'T DIMINISH THE WARMTH FOR JOE PATERNO

    by Walter Brasch

    STATE COLLEGE, Pa., Jan. 29, 2012 -- On Jan. 27, 2012, Gov. Tom Corbett (R-Pa.) praised Joe Paterno and ordered flags on all state buildings to fly at half-staff for four days. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    MICHAEL HARRINGTON'S "OTHER AMERICA" COMES BACK WITH A VENGEANCE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- As the demolition derby that is the Republican presidential primary careens into Florida, the battle seems to come down to a choice between a vulture capitalist of, by, and for the 1 percent and a serial adulterer who has done more to drive politics into the gutter than any man alive. [MORE]

    The Willies
    G.O.P. CONVENTION IN TAMPA WILL HAVE 'NEGATIVE' IMPACT, ECONOMIST SAYS

    by Joe Shea

    TAMPA, Jan. 23, 2011 -- The upcoming 2012 Republican National Convention will have a strong negative economic impact on the City of Tampa, Fla., where it will be held Aug. 27-30, 2012, a prominent economist told the American Reporter Monday night after the NBC Presidential Debate, but the party’s former national chairman told us shortly afterwards it will present a "great, great benefit” for the party in this year’s post-convention election campaign. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    AN I-PHONE WITH NO CAMERA! BRILLIANT!

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    WASHINGTON, Jan, 22, 2012 -- Apple and a small cellular company in Asia might just have hit upon the greatest marketing formula since they day we never knew we needed a non-cling sheet to dry our clothes: a high-tech, spanking new iPhone with no camera. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    THE GINGRICH TURN

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Jan. 22, 2012 -- It is one thing when a revelation stirs the electorate against (or for) certain presidential candidates, but it is another when voters give their very impressive imprimatur - their sovereign approval - to a change in political strategy, which is what they did in South Carolina today. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    MITT ROMNEY: AN UNAPOLOGETIC VULTURE CAPITALIST

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt., Jan. 20, 2012 -- In the craziness of the campaign for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination, we've seen and heard a lot of crazy things. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A NATION HELD HOSTAGE TO WAR

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It is as predictable as the sun rising in the east each morning. Someone proposes to cut U.S. military spending, and the howls of protest and outrage by conservatives immediately begin. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    MISS AMERICA: AUDITIONING FOR CENTER STAGE

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa., Jan. 15, 2012 -- Tucked between the New Hampshire primary and Groundhog Day, and directly competing against an NFL playoff game, is Saturday night's annual Miss America pageant. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    ROMNEY GOOFS AT CRITICAL MOMENT

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Jan. 9, 2011 (7:27PM ET) -- On the eve of the New Hampshire primary, Mitt Romney stuck his foot in his mouth so deep that the sole may have irritated his lower intestine. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    FAREWELL TO IOWA

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FALLS, N.M., Jan. 8, 2012 -- In my one stint covering the Iowa caucuses, I pretty much scratched my head at how a few voters, doing so little, could get so much media coverage with, ultimately, so little correlation with the rest of the country or the campaign. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    PERRY ON IRAQ: LET'S GO BACK

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Jan. 8, 2012 -- Bracketed by debates Saturday night and Sunday morning, and with the New Hampshire primary on Tuesday, the six Republican candidates for their party's presidential nomination had little time to prepare. Yet they were out in force all day Saturday, all over the state at crowded rallies where they seemed to command respect and popularity. On Tuesday morning, however, we will learn that was not the reality. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    RECLAIMING DEMOCRACY BEGINS WITH GETTING MONEY OUT OF POLITICS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The people who came to the Occupy protests and encampments around the country this past fall had many different causes they supported. But nearly all were in agreement about the one big thing that they see wrong with America -- the domination of the political process by monied interests. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    THE WHITE OBAMA

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Jan. 3, 2012 -- Rick Santorum is to Iowa Republicans what Barack Obama was to Iowa Democrats in 2008: young, smart, well-credentialed and very much the embodiment of his party's principles. He is, indeed, the white Obama. [MORE]

    The Willies
    THE POWER OF BACHMANN

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Jan. 2, 2012 -- News Flash: Rep. Michelle Bachmann will not be dropping out of the race for the Republican nomination after the caucus results are announced tomorrow night. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    RECLAIMING DEMOCRACY BEGINS WITH GETTING MONEY OUT OF POLITICS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The people who came to the Occupy protests and encampments around the country this past fall had many different causes they supported. But nearly all were in agreement about the one big thing that they see wrong with America -- the domination of the political process by monied interests. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    VACLAV HAVEL AND THE POWER OF TRUTH

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- When historians look back at 2011, I believe they will see a year that matched 1968 and 1989 for revolutionary fervor that spread around the world. [MORE]

    The Zimny
    PAIN ON A TRAIN

    by Christopher Zimny

    SARASOTA, Fl. -- When one reads the brutal story of the justly paranoid Winston Smith in the George Orwell classic 1984, one is confronted soon enough with a telescreen filled with the face of the Stalin-like image of Big Brother. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    BRITISH SCHOLARS SCHOOLED ON HANDSHAKES

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- In the days of old, when knights were bold, and fist bumps weren't invented, they made their stands, and shook their hands, and battles were prevented. That is, back in the Middle Ages, when two knights met and they weren't in the mood to do battle, each knight would extend an empty right hand - preferably their own - to show the other that they were unarmed and did not intend to start swinging a sword around. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    ONE JEW'S CHRISTMAS

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- I am a Jew. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A STEALTH REPEAL OF THE BILL OF RIGHTS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- On the 225th anniversary of the ratification of the Bill of Rights, the U.S. Senate voted to ratify a bill that will destroy many of our civil liberties. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    GHOSTLY MIRRORS AND JUVENILE HUSBANDS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I am not what you would call a brave man. Oh sure, I would protect my family from home invaders, axe murderers, and Jehovah's Witnesses who knock on our door on Saturday mornings ("sorry, no, we're Zoroastrians"). [MORE]

    Market Mover
    HONOR THE LIVING

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    CONROE, Tex., Dec. 15, 2011 -- The President and the Pentagon say the U.S. war in Iraq is officially over - except that approximately 4,000 American men and women in our armed forces won't be home for a while, and another 4,500 or more will never come home. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    FROM DEMOCRACY TO OLIGARCHY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The unofficial rallying cry of Occupy Wall Street - "We are the 99 percent!" - is a brilliant slogan that sums up who didn't benefit from the last three decades of government policies that catered to the wealthy at the expense of every one else. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    PENNSYLVANIA PIGEON SHOOTS SURVIVE ANOTHER TEST

    by Walter Brasch

    HARRISBURG, Pa., Dec. 13, 2011 -- If the first-year gross anatomy class at the Penn State's Hershey Medical School needs spare body parts to study, they can visit the cloakroom of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. That's where most of the legislators left their spines. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    UNDER PROPOSED NEW LAW, WE ARE ALL ENEMY COMBATANTS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Osama bin Laden is dead, and al-Qaida has been decimated to the point that it is no longer a force militarily or politically. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    SAYING NO TO THE MADNESS OF BLACK FRIDAY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In my three decades of journalism, I never minded working on holidays such as Thanksgiving. That's because it usually meant double overtime for working on a relatively quiet day. [MORE]

    The Willies
    POOR MR. POSSUM

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, DEC. 5, 2011 -- to whom do I owe penance for the death of a possum tonight? I ran him over (twice) in the divided roadway that cuts through the community I live in, optimistically called "El Conquistador" after the Spanish explorers like Hernando DeSoto who first visited this place in the 17th Century, about 200 years after Columbus [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    DID PENN STATE TRUSTEES VIOLATE STATE LAW?

    by Walter Brasch

    STATE COLLEGE, Pa. -- The Penn State Board of Trustees may have violated state law several times by its failure to publicly announce meetings and reveal how it handled the firing of Coach Joe Paterno. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    YOU CAN'T ARREST AN IDEA

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. - The video footage of Lt. John Pike of the University of California at Davis casually hosing down a group of unarmed, non-violent protesters with pepper spray on Nov. 18 has been compared to the fire hoses and police dogs turned on civil rights protesters in Birmingham, Ala., in the early 1960s. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    LEONARDO DA VINCI'S SECRET DIARY

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I recently heard a story on National Public Radio about Leonardo da Vinci's "To Do" list, related by historian Toby Lester in his new book, "da Vinci's Ghost." The Renaissance Man used to organize his thoughts. Whenever something caught his eye, said Lester, da Vinci would scribble a few notes or start sketching his ideas in his notebook. That's because da Vinci believed it was useful to "constantly observe, note, and consider" the things he saw around him. And many of those notes and sketches resulted in some of his most famous paintings, drawings, ideas, and inventions - some of which we still know, use and are inspitred by today. I've done the same thing for years, although not with the same effect and accomplishment as the industrious Italian. Most of my long-lasting contributions are boob jokes, and not even good ones at that. But I do have one thing that Toby Lester doesn't have. It's an old copy of one of Leonardo da Vinci's diaries, which I have translated into English. These are a few of the highlights:[MORE]

    September 19, 1487 - One of my assistants told me about some guy in the next village who was born with four arms and four legs. Totally have to draw this guy. No one's going to believe this at all. Not even sure I do.

    November 4, 1487 - Found the four-armed guy. His name is Wendell. He really does have four arms and legs. Was hoping he'd have two heads or something cool like that. But no, it's just the one guy with an extra pair of limbs. Dude runs like a horse though. Watched him outrun a group of villagers on horseback. Of course, he can't fight at all, although a slapfight by a four-armed man is pretty hilarious.

    June 13, 1488 - Had an idea for a flying machine. Been watching all these birds, and started sketching some ideas. I'll have to get around to building one of these things. Would be very useful for flying from home to the office. I'd need to figure out a way to launch the machine though. Maybe a giant crossbow...

    March 15, 1492 - Was just fired by Ludovico from the Big Horse project. Was supposed to cast a giant horse statue made out of bronze, but Michelangelo torpedoed the whole project. Put a bug in Lou's ear that he didn't think I was up to the task.

    On Native Ground
    HERMAN CAIN'S 15 MINUTES ARE UP

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Is the Herman Cain boom, such as it was, finally over? Cain, the former CEO of the Godfather's Pizza chain and head of the National Restaurant Association (NRA), had been running neck-and-neck with former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney in many national polls for the Republican presidential nomination. [MORE]

    The Willies
    SIGNS OF WEAR

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Nov. 19, 2011 -- I was looking through the pages tonight of our local Bradenton Herald, a McClatchy News paper purchased from Knight-Ridder a few years ago that publishes photos of people arrested and lists of all the documents filed in the past week at the Manatee County, Fla. courthouse. There in the list of foreclosures was the name of the local weekly newspaper publisher I used to work for. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE HIGH COST OF FREEDOM FROM FOSSIL FUELS

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa.-- For a few hours on the afternoon of Nov. 1, the people of southern California were scared by initial reports of an alert at the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. An 93alert94 is the second of four warning levels. [MORE]

    THE SPEECH NOT GIVEN: GOODBYE PENN STATE FOOTBALL

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    HOUSTON, Tex., Nov. 16, 2011 -- For days, folks have asked me about the moral issues in the alleged child abuse scandal at Penn State University. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    DEMOCRACY TAKES A BACKSEAT TO PROFITS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt., Nov. 10, 2011 -- Nothing scares the elites more than democracy. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    KARL THE CURMUDGEON JOURNALS HIS FEELINGS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Kid, do you keep a journal?" asked Karl the Curmudgeon. We were sitting in István's Hungarian tavern, watching the Hungarian Cup finals, as Bajai had just tied Lombard Papa, 1-1. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    THIS IS MY SIDE

    by Herman Cain

    ATLANTA, Ga., Ga., Nov. 7, 2011 -- I am a serious person, seeking the opportunity to do a serious and very important job. Our nation has very serious problems, particularly of an economic nature, and Barack Obama does not have the skill, knowledge or will to solve them. [MORE]

    Reporting: Science
    BREAKTHROUGH POWER TEST A SUCCESS, BUT A.P. SITS ON IT

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 30, 2011 -- If you went to Google tonight and searched for the terms "E Cat Rossi Associated Press" you'd get 1,430,000 results from blogs, Web sites and magazines like Wired.com (UK edition). That number will grow. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WE ARE ALL SCOTT OLSEN

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Now we've entered the stage of the Occupy Wall Street movement where things are starting to get dangerous for the brave American who insists upon exercising his or her First Amendment right to peaceably assemble to seek social change. [MORE]

    Momentum
    ON CATS, BASEBALL AND LONELINESS

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Everyone has their own way to cope with loneliness. During my last visit to Florida, I relied on baseball and my cat. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    FLA. DEMOCRATS HEAR IT LIKE THEY WANT IT

    by Ted Manna

    ORLANDO, Fla., Oct. 29, 2011 -- Vice President Joe Biden brought his attack-dog style to the Florida Democratic Party State Convention Friday night, snapping viciously at Republican Presidential candidates and snarling at a Republican-controlled Congress more bent on defeating President Barack Obama, he said, than doing anythng about our country's problems. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    WAR WITHOUT END, AMEN

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa., Oct. 28, 2011 -- We know the names of every one of the 4,479 Americans who were killed and the 32,200 who were wounded, both civilian and military, between March 20, 2003 and Oct. 21, 2011, the day President Barack Obama, fulfilling a campaign promise, declared the last American soldier would leave Iraq before the end of the year. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    HAVE BUSH AND OBAMA BONDED ON FOREIGN POLICY?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It always seems that every triumph for President Barrack Obama usually comes with a caveat. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    DON'T LET YOUR BABIES GROW UP TO BE CAMPERS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I think I hate camping. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    MITT AND PERRY CAN'T RAISE CAIN

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 25, 2011 -- I remember turning to Ron Fournier, the AP's chief political writer, as we listened in Denver to Gov. Howard Dean of Vermont talking about something or other long forgotten. He's on the margin of hysteria, I told him; I could hear it coming in his voice, and it was going to get loose pretty soon, I said. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A LIFETIME LIVED IN THE TWILIGHT YEARS OF THE AMERICAN DREAM

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Having turned 50 a few weeks ago, I've come to the realization that the decline and fall of the American Dream roughly parallels my lifetime. [MORE]

    Reporting: Orlando
    THE MIRACLE OF CHILDREN

    by Ted Manna

    ORLANDO, Fla., Oct. 20, 2011 -- If you think you have had a hard life, or even just a bad day, a few minutes around the "Champions" of the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals would abuse you forever of that notion. [MORE]

    Reporting: Campaign 2012
    CNN'S ORCHESTRATED ATTACK ON CAIN DIDN'T WORK

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 18, 2011 -- As a result of some sort of corrupt media consensus, CNN's Anderson Cooper flagrantly orchestrated an attack on Herman Cain at tonight's GOP presidential debate. Cain did well in responding, but CNN's role as a political orchestrator will be suspect from now through the next several debates. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    OCCUPY WALL STREET: SEPARATING FACT FROM MEDIA

    by Walter Brasch

    NEW YORK, N.Y., Oct. 16, 2011 -- Newspaper columnist Ann Coulter, spreading the lies of the extreme right wing, called the Occupy Wall Street protestors, "tattooed, body-pierced, sunken-chested 19-year-olds getting in fights with the police for fun." [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    FROM WALL STREET TO MAIN STREET, THE 99% IS RISING UP

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- To many in the corporate media, the center is sacred political ground. It is where the "sensible" and "serious" people dwell. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    AUSTRALIAN CLOTHING CHAIN HATES YOU

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- GASP Clothing hates normal-sized people. They hate you so much, they don't want you shopping at their stores ever. Unless you're a size six or smaller and have more money than brains, then GASP doesn't even want you setting foot in their store. (We'll forget for the moment that they're in Australia, and you're probably here in the United States. If they were an American company, they would still hate you.) GASP has made international news after Keara O'Neil, who wears a size 12, was insulted about her size by a male sales assistant, Chris, after saying she wanted to think about whether to buy her bridesmaids dresses at the retail chain. Keara was in the store last month looking at a particular dress, when Chris said "With your figure, I really think you should buy it." After that, she decided to leave, so Chris called after her, "Have fun shopping at Supre. I knew you were a joke the minute you walked in." Keara went home and emailed a complaint to GASP managers - GASPholes, I call them. Her email was a valid complaint, expressing her shock and displeasure at the way she was treated. [MORE]

    Reporting: Global Security
    THE TERROR TOMORROW: AL-QAEDA IN DECLINE

    by Annemarie Ulbrich

    LONDON, Oct. 10, 2011 -- "Al-Qaeda is losing ground in the Arabic world and the Middle East as a different narrative arises in those societies. It is operating on its periphery and faces an issue of credibility," says Sir Richard Dearlove, Chief of the British Secret Intelligence Service between February 1999 and May 2004. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    OCCUPY WALL STREET: THE INEVITABLE RESULT OF THREE DECADES OF INEQUALITY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If you are wondering why protesters have occupied Wall Street for the past few weeks, and why similar protests have been springing up in cities from Boston to Seattle, all around the country, consider these facts. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    CAIN, PAUL AND THE TALKING HEADS

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 9, 2011 -- CNN interrupted its regular programming Saturday morning to carry a 20-minute speech to the evangelical Values Voter conference by ex-Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney. [MORE]

    Reporting: Global Security
    DALAI LAMA CALLS FOR TOLERANCE AND PEACE

    by Anne Stiens

    WEISBADEN, Germany, Oct. 11, 2011 -- It was one of those few perfect "sun-shiny" days when you can smell the summer, flowers, trees and grass, and feel the warm touch of sunlight on your skin with temperatures of 35 degrees Celsius as you expect in India, when His Holiness The XIV Dalai Lama met friends and Tibetans in the park of the Villa Götzfried in Wiesbaden, Germany, at the end of August 2011. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    CLASS WARFARE? ONLY WHEN THE POOR FIGHT BACK

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt., Sept. 29, 2011 -- It's been flying around the Internet over the past fortnight, and deservedly so. [MORE]

    Reporting: Space Coast
    PERFECTION WARS WITH IMPERMANENCE ON FLORIDA'S SPACE COAST

    by Ted Manna

    VIERA, Fla. -- The flimsy breeze fluffed the impossibly tiny white sand into a billowing, gritty mist. It seeped everywhere, coated everything, and made the simple act of wiping your face feel like sandpaper scraping across your skin. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    CHATTANOOGA AIRPORT RENAMED CHATTANOOGA AIRPORT

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- From the "more money, poorly spent" file: the Chattanooga Airport is going to change its name to ... drumroll, please ... "Chattanooga Airport." [MORE]

    Reporting: California
    IS THE ECONOMY KILLING FATHERHOOD?

    by Tom Watson

    PASO ROBLES, Calif. -- I know what it's like not to have time to spend with your kids. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    IS SARAH PALIN THE MOST DANGEROUS WOMAN IN AMERICA?

    by Ginny Grimsley

    NEW YORK, N.Y., Oct. 1, 2011 -- What makes Sarah Palin so irresistible? [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    BANNING THE FIRST AMENDMENT

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. - Parents demanded it be banned. School superintendents placed it in restricted sections of their libraries. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    THE DEBUT OF CITIZEN CAIN

    by Ted Manna

    ORLANDO, Fla., Sept. 25, 2011 -- Deep cracks in what seemed to be monolithic momentum of the Republican election machine appeared here Saturday evening when Atlanta businessman Herman Cain swamped the established front-runners in a critical party straw poll that often predicts the Republican presidential nominee - and the next President of the United States. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    'VIDEO TERRORIST' ANDREW BREITBART SEES GOOD HUNTING IN 2012

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 26, 2011 -- Surrounded by a throng of reporters and bathed in the bright lights of tv cameras from all over the world, Andrew Breitbart was in his element. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    LET PEOPLE WITHOUT HEALTH INSURANCE DIE? NOT IN VERMONT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- At last week's "Tea Party" Republican presidential debate, CNN's Wolf Blitzer asked Texas Congresssman Ron Paul this hypothetical question: a 30-year-old man in good health elects not to purchase health insurance. He then has a major medical crisis that requires expensive care. Who should pay for his care? [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    HOW WE PREDICTED HERMAN CAIN'S VICTORY

    by Joe Shea

    ORLANDO, Fla., Sept. 24, 2011 -- The American Reporter was the only publication in the world that flatly predicted Herman Cain would win the Florida Republican Presidential Preference Straw Poll. We did get lucky, but it really happened because we listened well to one person. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    REPUBLICANS PLAY IT FOR LAUGHS

    by Joe Shea

    ORLANDO, Fla., Sept. 22, 2011 -- On a day when the stock market teetered at the very precipice of a second Depression, and the decades-old Palestinian fight for an independent state finally neared an ultimate resolution, and U.S. unemployment barely budged from its dismal state, the Republicans - or some of them, certainly - played it all for laughs. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    WIKILEAKS LEAKER PEEVED HIS BOOK LEAKED

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Julian Assange loves leaking information. He loves finding other people's secrets and sharing it with the entire world. He even likes to say "information wants to be free." [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    RECKLESS ADVICE FOR RICK PERRY

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- I suddenly started feeling sorry for Gov. Rick Perry last night. It came when he said, "I don't think you have a heart." [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    THURSDAY'S FOX NEWS DEBATE COULD CHANGE THE CAMPAIGN PICTURE

    by Ted Manna

    ORLANDO, Fla., Sept. 22, 2011 -- For the second time in two weeks, Republican presidential contenders will clash tonight as the Florida State Republican Party kicks off its three-day Presidential V Conference at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando with a Fox News nationally televised debate. The so-called P5 wraps up Saturday with a straw poll whose winner has historically gone on to win the Republican primary. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    SMARTER THAN SHE LOOKS

    by Ron Kenner

    LOS ANGELES, Calif., Sept. 17, 2011, 11:05pm ET -- Rep. Ron Paul may have won the presidential straw poll at the California GOP 2011 Fall Convention pulling away, but at a party dinner Friday evening, where Rep. Michele Bachmann was the principal speaker, the Minnesota congresswoman won the reception. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE MUGGING OF SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa., Sept. 18, 2011 -- SpongeBob SquarePants may be hazardous to your mental development97if you're a 4-year old. At least that's what two psychologists at the University of Virginia claim, based upon a study they conducted that may have as many holes as the average sponge who lives under the sea. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    FOR OBAMA AND DEMOCRATS, TIME'S RUNNING OUT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Before a Joint Session of Congress on Sept. 8, President Obama laid out a $447-billion package of tax cuts and new government spending to help stimulate the economy and create new jobs. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    NATO, TALIBAN TAKE WAR TO TWITTERSPHERE

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- It may be the first time two warring entities have taken to taunting each other online, but the Taliban and the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) have been taking potshots at each other on Twitter. (ISAF is the NATO-led organization that has been operating in Afghanistan to help grow the Afghan National Security Forces, and to help fight the insurgent Taliban.) [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    SAGGING FORTUNES TARGET PERRY

    by Ted Manna

    TAMPA, Fla., Sept. 12, 2011 -- Trying to lift a sagging blimp of poll numbers, seven trailing candidates for the GOP presidential nomination huffed and puffed as Texas Gov. Rick Perry's fortunes rose far above theirs in the latest numbers on the race. A pre-debate poll showed him far ahead of Mitt Romney and even further ahead of the rest of the pack. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    9/1+10: A DECADE OF MISSED OPPORTUNITIES

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- We're 10 years removed from that tragic September morning of death and destruction in New York, Washington and Pennsylvania. [MORE]

    Reporting: Florida
    2 DEAD, 22 WOUNDED IN FLORIDA NIGHTCLUB RAMPAGE, AND NO SUSPECTS YET

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 10, 2011 (Updated 10:03pm ET) -- As most of the nation got ready Saturday to mark the solemn anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001, two gunmen with automatic weapons opened fire on 300 people just after midnight at a popular nightclub in Palmetto, Fla. When the shooting stopped, a man and woman were dead and 22 other were hit with a spray of bullets from automatic weapons and a pistol. The attackers vanished into the night. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    FOR OBAMA, STRONG WORDS OF SUPPORT IN FLORIDA - FROM A REPUBLICAN

    by Ted Manna

    ORLANDO, Sept. 10, 2011 -- With impassioned eloquence, an Orlando, Fla., city commissioner declared his unwavering support for Democratic President Barack Obama, calling on all Americans of all races to unite to restore the country's status in the world on the 10th anniversary of its worst tragedy. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    CROCODILE TEARS AND CASH-REGISTER PATRIOTS

    by Walter Brasch

    Editor's note:: Walter Brasch wrote columns, human interest and investigative articles about 9/11, and was one of the first to write about PATRIOT Act violations of civil liberties and the Constitution. Using investigative techniques and inside information, he questioned the Bush Administration on the truth behind its plans for invading Iraq. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    DUTCH SCIENTISTS GROW SYNTHETIC SAUSAGES IN A LAB

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Anyone who has ever bought an 8-pack of hot dogs for two bucks already knows what they're eating is not "meat" in the strictest sense of the word. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    THE NEW HAND

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 7, 2011, 10:38pm ET -- Americans watching the MSNBC GOP presidential candidate debate tonight could not have been very encouraged about their future under any of the seven men and one woman seeking election to the White House in 2012. They left it largely to the White House to come up with a specific plan for American jobs. [MORE]

    PANAMA'S BOOM BELIES ONE OF WORLD'S WORST EDUCATION SYSTEMS

    by David Young

    PANAMA CITY, Sept. 8, 2011 -- Despite an economic boom that could be the envy of the world, Panama's education system is listed as one of the world's worst and may slow down the expansion of its economy. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    CORPORATE AMERICA SENDS A LABOR DAY MESSAGE

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa., Sept. 6, 2011 -- For most Americans, the only significance of Labor Day is that it concludes a three day weekend. For Kirk Artley, it means he has about six weeks left of employment. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A NATURAL DISASTER MEETS UNNATURAL GOVERNING PRINCIPLES

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I write this at the end of three very long days covering Tropical Storm Irene and its aftermath here in southern Vermont. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    BELOIT COLLEGE MAKES ME FEEL OLD

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- The class of 2015 started college this week. The class of 2015 - students who will, their parents hope, graduate from college in four years - was born in 1993, the same year I got married. There's nothing that makes me feel quite so old as knowing I'm old enough to be the father of today's college freshmen. Me and Ferris Bueller. [MORE]

    AR Editorial
    BOEHNER: A SLUGGISH CLOG IN A DUMB MACHINE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 1, 2011 -- House Speaker John Boehner's rejection of President Obama's request to address the nation about American jobs and our economy was not only supremely rude, but broke new ground in how insulting elected officials can be towards the occupant of our nation's highest office. [MORE]

    Reporting: Florida
    THE SOLAR STATE

    by Ted Manna

    BRADENTON, Fla., Aug. 25, 2011 -- Here on a sun-splashed, gentle curve of the Gulf of Mexico, Florida's Manatee County - a ground-breaker in implementing the state's Sunshine Act for information openness - this week joined a growing list of cities and counties in harnessing real sunshine by agreeing to install solar panels on more than a dozen major facilities, revving up the local economy with jobs and easily saving its recession-stressed budgets millions of dollars in future energy costs. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE COMMUNITY AND THE LADDER OF DEATH

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- When Emmylou Harris sang Townes Van Zandt's "When I Needed You" at the Green River Festival last month, she said she was often asked to sing it at weddings. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    BACHMANN AND PERRY: THE PRODUCTS OF A POST-LOGICAL AMERICA

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- A piece that appeared in Rolling Stone a few weeks ago outlined the unique brand of crazy that is U.S Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn. [MORE]

    Reporting: Medicine
    INFECTIONS TAKE AT LEAST 51 LIVES AT PANAMA HOSPITAL

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Aug. 25, 2011 -- Hospital-acquired infections of a dangerous multiple drug-resistant bacteria called KPC has claimed more than 50 lives at the largest public hospital in Panama, The American Reporter has learned. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE NEXUS OF CLIMATE CHANGE AND WAR

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- There is virtually no doubt that global warming exists. Aside from a few cranks and those heavily invested in the fossil fuel industry, the scientific consensus is that the Earth's climate is changing, and changing faster than ever before. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    TEA PARTY SNAKE OIL FOR SALE

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The Tea Party, mutant spawn of billionaires and the Republican Party, held their spineless parents and the nation hostage during the debt ceiling crisis, and now demands an even greater ransom. [MORE]

    One Man's Opinion
    ARE WE ON THE ROAD OF NO RETURN?

    by Peter Leeds

    RALEIGH, N.C., Aug. 22, 2011 -- You've certainly heard the endless stream of negative economic news lately. America's fiscal house is in trouble, job growth has stalled, and we may be driving right into a double-dip recession. [MORE]

    The Willies
    WHAT CAN OBAMA DO?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Aug. 17, 2011 -- I am a believer in dreams, and when I had a waking dream a few days after the S&P downgrade of our national debt of President Obama packing his bags and leaving the White House, I was saddened for him and for my country. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    I MAY NOT KNOW MUCH ABOUT ART

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- We always think of the art world as being rather genteel and well-heeled. No sensational or controversial stories, unless someone stole a painting from a museum, snuck it back in with a forgery painted over it, and the thief slept with the attractive female insurance investigator trying to track down the missing painting. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE EUROPEAN FINANCIAL MESS: GREECE WAS JUST THE BEGINNING

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Last month, I had the opportunity to hear a talk by Maria Margaronis, who covers Europe with her husband, D.D. Guttenplan, for The Nation. [MORE]

    Campaign 2012
    A MIND OF HS OWN

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Aug. 12, 2011 -- You really have to wonder why Ron Paul can't win the Republican nomination. Consider this: He's the only candidate who tells the truth. He's the only candidate who truly believes in something. (Update, 12AM ET Sunday) He's the only candidate you can trust to do what he promises to do. And he finished very close to winner Michele Baschmann in the Iowa Straw Poll Saturday. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE NO BS COLUMN

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Some people have a real problem with cursing. I won't offer any examples, but you've no doubt heard them. You might not like them, but you know what words I'm talking about. If I say "the S-word," you know what I'm talking about. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    MARKETS: WHAT NOW, MR. PRESIDENT?

    ny Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Aug. 8, 2011 -- The chickens of mismanagement, political dogma, and uncontrolled spending have now come home to roost on Wall Street. [MORE]

    An AR Editorial
    S&P'S BETRAYAL MUST BE PUNISHED

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla, Aug. 8, 2011 -- The words of Section 4, Article 14 of the Constitution of the United States, which are, "The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned," are unique for two reasons. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WE NEED MORE CARPENTERS, AND FEW JACKASSES

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- After watching the dispiriting spectacle over the past few weeks in Washington of grown men and women acting like petulant children, instead of acting like our elected officials, it just makes me want to ask a few questions. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    'TIL DEBT DO US PART

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Aug. 2, 2011 -- There should be little or no euphoria over the Congressional bipartisan Band-Aid used to nurse decades of festering, blistered and infected economic wounds. [MORE]

    AR Opinion
    S&P MAKES ME MAD

    by Ted Manna

    This downgrading of US creditworthiness makes me mad. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE GAME IS AFOOT

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I am not a ghoul. At least, I don't think I am. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    BLOWING UP THE U.S. ECONOMY TO SCORE A FEW POLITICAL POINTS IS MADNESS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- As I write this on Wednesday night, I am in utter disbelief at how completely messed up things are in Washington. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    FOOD PURITANS ATTACK HOT DOGS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I'm tired of people who try to ruin the fun for everyone. I'm tired of these smug societal Puritans who can only enjoy life when they try to spoil everyone else's good time. Like the Calvinists who burned witches at the stake. Like the preacher dad from "Footloose." Like people who call Christmas trees "Holiday foliage." [MORE]

    The Willies
    A COUNTRY HUNG OUT TO DRY

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, July 24, 2011 -- I don't like getting stretched between two poles and hung out to dry, but that's what politicians do to me and my fellow Americans during these debt ceiling jams in Washington. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    THE WALL STREET-NORWAY DISCONNECT

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., July 23, 2011 -- Six weeks away from the decade anniversary of the September 11th terror attacks one would think Wall Street and the nation would take serious note of the slaughter in Norway. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    HOW WE GOT TO THE ABYSS: A BRIEF ECONOMIC HISTORY OF THE LAST DECADE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's hard for many Americans to remember that when George W. Bush became President in 2001, he was inheriting from President Bill Clinton one of the strongest federal balance sheets since the end of World War II. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    STOP MESSING AROUND WITH THE LANGUAGE

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Businesspeople need to quit messing around with the English language. They're really screwing it up. They need to stick with selling things and making money, and leave the language to the experts. [MORE]

    Reporting: Alabama
    DUMB IN ALABAMA: COLLEGE PRESIDENTS HAVE DIPLOMA MILL DEGREES

    by Richard Hardin

    MOBILE, Ala. -- If graduates of some Alabama community colleges seem to lack something in the skills department, it may be that their education was organized by people who themselves have diploma-mill degrees from unaccredited colleges - and perhaps don't know how to teach. [MORE]

    An A.R. Editorial
    INNOVATION IS THE ONE WAY OUT OF OUR DEBT CRISIS

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, July 16, 2011 -- I was asked at McDonald's this morning by a few older guys how America could possibly ever recover from a $14-trillion debt load that already eats up 6 percent of our nation's budget. I was able to reply in a single word. [MORE]

    World View
    BOLIVA'S FEMALE WRESTLERS EARN EQUALITY, TOO

    by Tom Clifford

    LA PAZ, Bolivia -- The wrestling ring is a place where stereotypes are turned on their head and left locked in a half-nelson. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    PLAYING CHICKEN WITH THE U.S. ECONOMY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- As the game of political chicken continues in Washington, it looks more and more like the rest of us will be plucked. [MORE]

    The Weatherman
    IN TEXAS DROUGHT, CATTLE DIE OF TOO MUCH WATER

    by Heather Buchman

    STATE COLLEGE, Pa., July 15, 2011 -- Everyone is feeling the heat this summer. Human, canine, feline, or even bovine, we're all at the mercy of high temperatures. Unfortunately, AccuWeather.com meteorologists foresee no signs of relief from 100-degree heat and drought conditions in Texas and the southern Plains any time soon. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    OUR HOPE FOR CHANGE IS STILL UNFULFILLED

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- After significant compromise with the recalcitrant Republicans who want to continue to give tax advantages to the wealthy while cutting significant social programs, President Obama has finally taken a stand on debt ceiling negotiations. However, in labor, wildlife management, and the environment he is still compromising rather than coming out forcefully for principles he and the working class believe. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    I DO?

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- My wife and I raised a lot of eyebrows when we first announced we were getting married. It was especially puzzling to people, because we had already been married for three years. [MORE]

    Momentum
    DEAR PRESIDENT OBAMA: HANDS OFF SOCIAL SECURITY!

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I sent a letter to the White House late last week. [MORE]

    An AR Editorial
    A FAREWELL TO SPACE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., July 8, 2011 -- There's lots of ways to kill a thing. You can starve it to death, or poison it. You can take away its functions, one by one or all at once. You can put a frog in a pot of cold water and turn on a burner under the pot, and it won't realize until it's way too late, if at all, that it's being boiled to death - that's killing it softly, or slowly. You can kill it all at once, as with a gunshot. You can stab it and let it bleed to death. You can feed it tiny bits of radium or mercury for a little while or lead for a long time and let it die. There's just a myriad of ways to kill - as Shakespeare had Cleopatra say in Antony & Cleopatra, "I have pursued conclusions infinite of easy ways to die." She chose an asp, as you would call a scorpion, and she pressed it to her breast. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    TRICKLE-DOWN ECONOMICS FAILS THE FED-UPON

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Most Americans suspect that the so-called recovery after the economic collapse of 2007-09 has been uneven at best. [MORE]

    The Willies
    ON CORPORATE TAXES, 'HIGHER' MEANS 'HIRE'

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON -- American corporations have greater profits, more cash and pay less tax than ever before. Taking those taxes out of the American economic equation has devastated the middle class and its principal institution of progress: education. [MORE]

    PRESIDENT OBAMA'S SIX WARS: ISN'T IT TIME TO DO SOMETHING?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's a good thing that President Obama got his Nobel Peace Prize early in his first term. He certainly wouldn't get it now for running six wars. [MORE]

    Momentum
    OF JELLY BEANS AND JOURNALISTS

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Before the royal wedding, the British press was buzzing about a speckled jelly bean with Kate Middleton's face on it. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    QUESTIONS REMAIN IN GOVERNMENT'S ANTI-CIGARETTE CAMPAIGN

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa., June 27, 2011 -- The federal government has launched what may become one of the most effective propaganda campaigns in American history. [MORE]

    World View
    A MINER'S LIFE: COCA, HUNGER AND FEAR

    by Tom Clifford

    BOGOTA -- At the cost of 25 years of their lifespan, workers toil 60 hours a week for $9 a day in the bowels of a mine that once funded an empire. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE TEN COMMANDMENTS OF BIRTHDAYS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I turn 44 next week. I'm not going to raise a fuss, or be embarrassed by my advanced age. If anything, I see it as evidence that I'm doing everything right. It also gives me some insight to the proper way that birthdays should be celebrated. So here are my Ten Commandments of Birthdays. 1) Thou shalt not be an old poop and refuse to acknowledge thy birthday. [MORE]

    The Willies
    IF GAY MARRIAGE, WHY NOT POLYGAMY?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., June 25, 2011 -- Imagine a marriage in which one partner is a former heterosexual male who has declared himself a woman, augmented his breasts but kept his male genitalia, and gotten married to a formerly heterosexual man who has removed his male genitalia and had them replaced with a vaginal canal, but has not enhanced his breasts. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    REPUBLICANS CHIP AWAY AT OUR RIGHT TO VOTE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Over the past few months, there has been a flurry of activity in Republican-controlled state legislatures around the country to pass laws to limit voter access to the polls. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    LAMENTING THE LOSS OF CHILDHOOD

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- It's nearly Father's Day, and I'm ruminating at a playground with my 8-year-old son - about his life compared to my own as an 8-year-old. About what it was like for the Eriks and Davids and Julies of 1975, compared to the Jeremys and Carters and Chloës of 2011. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    CONSERVATIVES TO NEEDY AMERICANS: DROP DEAD

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's not news that the Tea Party radicals are now the tail that is wagging the Republican Party dog. [MORE]

    Second Opinion
    SHOOTING BLANKS: MALE SPERM COUNT DROPS 50%

    by Amos Grunebaum, M.D

    NEW YORK -- When infertility strikes, it can be a massive source of stress for couples, and many are too quick to assume it's a female issue. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    NEW HAMPSHIRE OR BUS: SARAH PALIN'S NO-CAMPAIGN CAMPAIGN TOUR

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa., June 12, 2011 -- Speeding along city streets, going from somewhere to somewhere else, was the Sarah Palin "One Nation I'm Not Running for Anything But Follow Me Anyhow" bus chase. [MORE]

    Momentum
    WE FOUGHT THE BEAR AND THE BEAR WON

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. - The first time a black bear visited our house in the woods, my husband grabbed the camera. We watched in fascination as the bear popped the lids off plastic garbage bins as if they were Pringle's tops. Then we called our neighbors, who put the grandkids in the car and came to watch. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    DEFICIT REDUCTION: THE WRONG POLICY AT THE WRONG TIME

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- You might think that with the unemployment rate up above 9 percent once again, and with the U.S. economy showing few signs of signs of recovery, that there would be more talk about economic stimulus and less talk about the federal deficit. [MORE]

    Momentum
    OUR MAN IN MONTPELIER

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- After years of having a Republican do-nothing governor, Vermont last year elected an energetic Democrat with a liberal, do-everything-and-get-it-right fervor. When Peter Shumlin was president pro tem of the Vermont Senate, for example, one of his achievements was bringing gay marriage to Vermont - without a court mandate. He ran for governor on the promise to shut down the state's aging, leaking nuclear power plant. He's only been in office since January 5, and he's already signed a bill to give Vermont single-payer health care. [MORE]

    The Great Debate
    REP. RYAN, AT RALPH REED CONFAB, TURNS DOWN A BIBLE

    by James Salt

    WASHINGTON, D.C., June 7, 2011 -- On Friday, during Ralph Reed's Faith & Freedom Coalition conference here, a progressive group I belong to called Catholics United attempted to deliver a Bible to Congressman Paul Ryan. [MORE]

    A.R. Essay
    THE OTHER ANSWER TO GLOBAL TERRORISM

    by Len Indianer

    DAYTONA BEACH, Fla., June 7, 2011 -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu gave a speech on May 23 in Washington, D.C., in which he said, "I envision an Israel that can dedicate even more of its creative and scientific talents to help solve some of the great challenges of the day, foremost of which is finding a clean and affordable substitute for gasoline. And when we find that alternative, we will stop transferring hundreds of billions of dollars to radical regimes that support terror." [MORE]

    Reporting: Florida
    $1-BILLION PROJECT FOR FLORIDA'S PORT MANATEE REVEALED - ALONG WITH A WELL-KEPT SECRET

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., June 2, 2011 -- For months now, two of the best-kept secrets in Manatee County government have been the secret site plans and planning staff reviews of code-named "Project Royal" and "Project Palm" in the county's new Port Manatee Encouragement Zone. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    AIR RAGE FORCES PILOT TO TURN PLANE AROUND

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- It's getting harder to fly these days. The TSA is groping its passengers, airlines are trying to gouge travelers with new charges, seats are getting smaller, and people are getting angrier. I used to travel quite a bit and while it was difficult 10 years ago, it has gotten a lot harder these days. [MORE]

    The Housing Crisis
    HOW TO SAVE AMERICA'S DISTRESSED HOMES

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, June 1, 2011 -- Deep in a funk last night about the future impacts of falling property tax revenues on our cities and schools, the terrible burden of mortgages on the unemployed and poorly-paid Americans who are losing their homes, and I think the grace of God, I've come up with a plan that can help Americans save their homes, banks ensure their own future, and the economy begin to steadily recover. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IS IT STILL WORTH IT TO GET A COLLEGE DEGREE?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Is college a sucker's game? Billionaire venture capitalist, hedge fund manager and vocal libertarian Peter Thiel thinks so. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE FORGOTTEN STORY OF HOW THE FALLEN OF WORLD WAR II CAME HOME

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Fifteen million Americans served in the military during World War II, and about 359,000 Americans died in the war. [MORE]

    MEMORIAL DAY: TWO NAMES THAT MATTER

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa., May 30, 2011 -- Unless you were in a coma the past few years, you probably know who Charlie Sheen, Lindsay Lohan, and Paris Hilton are. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    EVERY CHILD'S MANDATORY GRAND TOUR

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., May 24, 2011 -- Now they tell me I have woefully failed in the upbringing of my children. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    WHAT'S IN A ROSE?

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- In spite of, or maybe because of, that intolerable "Every Rose Has Its Thorn" song by Poison, everyone pretty much knows that, well, every rose has thorns. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE AUDACITY OF HATE: BIRTHERS, DEATHERS, DENIERS, AND BARACK OBAMA

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The latest garbage spewing hate as it circles the Internet in a viral state of panic continues a three-year smear against Barack Obama. [MORE]

    The Willies
    TRUTH FOR SALE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., May 22, 2011 -- I keep reminding myself that I am a nothing when I offer my opinion about Israel and its progress toward Middle East peace. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    A ONE-SIDED CONVERSATION ABOUT MUSIC

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Why aren't you kids practicing your instruments?" [MORE]

    Market Mover
    HELPFUL HINTS FOR THE END OF THE WORLD

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., May 21, 2011 -- I am now informed that the world will end tomorrow at 6 p.m. local time. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WILL CHINA OVERTAKE THE U.S. AS THE TOP WORLD POWER? NOT YET

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If the International Monetary Fund is to be believed, China is poised to surpass the United States as the world's largest economy by 2016. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    PROMISES, PROMISES: WHY POLITICIANS CAN LIE by Walter Brasch

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa -- With less than a week before the election, Marshbaum has been campaigning furiously. [MORE]

    Reporting: Cape Canaveral
    GOO0BYE TO ENDEAVOUR

    by Ted Manna

    MERRITT ISLAND, Fla. -- Even from miles away on the Banana River, here on Merritt Island, Fla., the shuttle takeoff spectacle impresses first-timers and old hands both, and if it hadn't been for a little help from one of those launch veterans, I still could have lost the final liftoff of the Space Shuttle Endeavour in the clouds this morning. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WHO DESERVES CREDIT FOR KILLING BIN LADEN? NOT GEORGE W. BUSH

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The former members of the Bush Administration and their conservative apologists want to give George W. Bush all the credit for the killing of Osama bin Laden and the capture of a substantial amount of his operational data on May 1. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    OUR FIRST UPSIDE-DOWN TOMATO GARDEN

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Finally, after 43 years, I'm getting my own vegetable garden. [MORE]

    An AR Editorial
    DEAD AND UNDEAD

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., May 4, 2011 -- It's awfully disappointing to hear a new set of facts about the death of Osama bin Laden after the first set fit the drama so well. First we heard he grabbed a gun and his wife and went down firing away, his wife taking bullets meant for him and dying at his side. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    BIN LADEN'S DEAD. CAN WE END THIS WAR NOW, PLEASE?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Osama bin Laden is dead. [MORE]

    Reporting: Florida
    STATE GIVES SOME VOTERS A 50% TAX BREAK - IF THEY WANT IT

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, May 4, 2011 -- The Florida Legislature sent a proposed constitutional amendment to the Nov. 2012 ballot today that will not only apply 50 percent lower lower Save Our Homes-style caps on property tax increases on business properties, but first-time home buyers with a special 5-year, 50 percent property tax exemption. That will cut taxes for the buyers below what homestead neighbors with identical property values will pay. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    OSAMA BIN LADEN: THE NEW LESSONS TO BE LEARNED

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., May 4, 2011 -- The killing of Osama Bin Laden by U.S. Navy Seals inside Pakistan presents a new challenge to the United States and its intelligence communities in dealing modern political and media realities. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE PEOPLE'S BUDGET IS BETTER FOR ALL

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It gladdens my heart to hear that Republican members of Congress are getting an earful from their constituents regarding the party's budget priorities. [MORE]

    The Willies
    'SCIENTIFIC BREAKTHROUGHS' - OR JUST BIG LIES?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., April 30, 2011 -- No one loves news of a "major scientific breakthrough" more than I do. I devour the stories, and they often end up in the "Briefs" section of the American Reporter's home page. But almost all of them have one thing in common: they're lies. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    TORNADOS AND THE TWISTED 'HO-HUM' MEDIA

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE N.M., May 1, 2011 -- The true nature of New York-centric and Inside the Beltway media bias was clearly revealed on CBS Sunday morning when their coverage of the fatal frailties of weather identified most of us as people with a "Ho Hum" existence. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    ARE YOU INSULTING YOUR PET?

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I insult my dog on a fairly regular basis. Did you see that? I just did it again. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    DOWN FOR THE COUNTS: AMERICA'S FASCINATION WITH ROYALTY

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- In case you're in a funk because you think the reason you didn't receive an invitation to the royal wedding is because the Brits are still ticked off about that silly little skirmish back in 1776, the American media have a solution for you. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    HOW TO RE-FRAME THE DEBATE OVER DEFICITS AND SPENDING

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The budget game that is being played out in Washington is clear for all to see. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    SCRATCHES ON THE BLACKBOARD OF ANIMAL CRUELTY

    by Walter Brasch

    HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Take a pigeon. [MORE]

    The Willies
    'SAVE US, O [BLANK], FROM SMALLER MINDS THAN OURS'

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., April 22, 2011 -- The Rev. Joey Mimbs, pastor of Bethel Baptist Church in Bradenton, had a day off on Good Thursday of Holy Week, the peak days of Christianity's liturgical calendar. He wasn't taking phone calls at his church or at home but enjoying a well-deserved day of rest. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    LOOK EVERYONE, I'M A DISTRACTION!

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- One of the dumbest things I ever heard when I was a kid was the phrase "distract the other students from their education. "I tended to hear it frequently, since I was the distraction, but I heard it in relation to other things too, especially in high school. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    OBAMA SURRENDERS AGAIN TO THE REPUBLICANS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's been pathetic to watch the surrender of President Obama and the Democrats in the face of the Tea Party-fueled Republican goal of spending cuts and austerity for working Americans and tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    A CROCK POT TAX-EXEMPT IDEA

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- A wall of suffocating heat nearly vaporized me as I walked into Marshbaum's house. In the kitchen was a portable kiln spewing fiery venom that was curling the linoleum. In the den, wildly pumping a potter's wheel flinging clay all over the room, was Marshbaum. [MORE]

    An AR Essay
    RADIO NEEDED IN A DISCORDANT LAND

    Mark Scheinbaum

    IN THE LAND OF LIBERTY -- And dissent filled the Land. [MORE]

    The Willies
    HOW TO SAVE THE ECONOMY

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., April 11, 2011 -- I believe in government, and I believe government ought to do all it reasonably can to make its citizens prosperous. [MORE]

    Reporting: Florida
    FLORIDA 'LOCALS' FIGHT A STRANGLEHOLD ON FIBER-OPTIC LINES

    by Joe Shea

    SARASOTA, Fla., April 10, 2011 -- Top officials from two counties blasted the Florida Department of Transportation and its consultants for barring use of fiber optic lines it will install along I-75, urging the FDOT to join the 21st Century to save money and seize opportunities to "piggy-back," or plant parallel fiber for cities, counties and towns along the way. The venue was a meeting of transportation officials with city and county government officials in Sarasota, Fla. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    RIGHT-WING BULLIES CLAIM VICTIMHOOD WHILE ATTACKING THE LEFT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- No one does the persecution complex quite like right-wingers. [MORE]

    Constance
    MY TWO LIZZES

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- I was thinking of the two Elizabeths who both fit prominently in my memories of the past seven decades. First, I looked up the origin of the name Elizabeth and was pleasantly surprised to read the meanings. [MORE]

    Momentum
    DIFFERENT DRUMMER, DIFFERENT DRUM

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Creativity is not a tourist site. I live in a place, Brattleboro, that prides itself on being an "art town." We sell that image to newspapers and magazines in the hopes that it will drive the tourist trade our way. And it seems to be working. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE CHERNOBYL NIGHTMARE IS REAWAKENED BY FUKUSHIMA

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- As we nervously watch a nuclear catastrophe unfold at the Fukushima reactor complex in Japan, the memories of Chernobyl keep coming to mind. [MORE]

    The Willies
    KORAN-BURNING: WHO'S TO BLAME FOR THE DEATHS?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., April 2, 2011 -- President Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Defense Secretary Robert Gates have been proved right in their outspoken effort to get a Florida pastor not to burn a pile of Korans at his church last September. [MORE]

    The Big Picture
    BASEBALL AND DiMAGGIO AT HIGH NOON

    by Michael Riccards

    TRENTON, N.J., March 31, 2011 -- The change of seasons, especially in the East, brings bucolic dreams of springtime, and of its sister, baseball. And once again, it is Opening Day. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    OBAMA'S MISSING IN ACTION IN LABOR STRUGGLE

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- As you would expect, Michael Moore, the Rev. Jesse Jackson, and AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka were in Madison, Wisc., to support and rally the workers in their fight against the union-busting governor and Republican-dominated state legislature. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    10 COMMANDMENTS FOR HELICOPTER PARENTS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Helicopter parents are those parents who hover over their kids, guarding their precious snowflakes against all the bumped knees, skinned noses, and hurty feelings they may encounter throughout their life. [MORE]

    The Big Picture
    THE PENSION BATTLES

    by Michael P. Riccards

    TRENTON, N.J. -- All across the nation, the states are the battleground for conflicts on public pensions. While the federal government has taken aggressive steps to save, for example, UAW pensions in the automobile industry, it has rarely reformed federal pension systems (Congress belongs, of course, to those funds). In all of this, we are bearing witness to state governors' attacks on public pensions. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    CHARLIE & THE SCANDAL FACTORY

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- There has been a lot in the news this past week. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    FUKUSHIMA REMINDS US OF THE REAL NUCLEAR THREAT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I've been living and working next to a nuclear plant for the past two decades. [MORE]

    The Big Picture
    THE RE-EMERGENCE OF OBAMA

    by Michael Riccards

    TRENTON, N.J. -- Within hours of the 2010 Congressional elections, Republican officeholders, media wizards, and 24/7 hate television and radio began to relish the demise of the President. Now, less than six months later, we cannot find strong, legitimate Republicans to run for president. All of a sudden, we are left with a collection of no-name governors (quick: identify one accomplishment of Governor Buddy Roemer) and has-beens from previous races. Where is Bob Dole when the GOP needs him most? [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    GOV. TOM CORBETT: PENNSYLVANIA'S SAVIOR

    by Walter Brasch

    HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Pennsylvania's Republican Gov. Tom Corbett may be the most adept politician in America. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    DON'T GET MAD AT THE PLUTOCRATS. GET EVEN!

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Forbes magazine recently put out its "Rich List" for 2011. Several numbers stood out. [MORE]

    Make My Day?
    WHAT DOES 'DINOSAUR' SMELL LIKE?

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- It was bound to happen someday. In the 1950s, we were given 3-D glasses to make movies "come to life." In the '80s and '90s, it was Surround Sound that put us "in the middle of the action." And in the 21st Century, odor is the Next Big Thing that will make entertainment and education more realistic. [MORE]

    Constance
    NO STAMP, NO DELIVERY

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Normally, a trip to the Post Office is pretty matter-or-fact. Not this morning. [MORE]

    A.R. Essay
    IT'S NOT HOW YOU SPELL HIS NAME THAT COUNTS

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., March 19, 2011 -- As Tomahawk missiles from offshore American carriers and ordnance from French Rafale jets rain down fire and death on the Libyan troops and mercenaries of its murderous, erratic leader, the last thing he's worried about is how they spell his name in the headlines of American newspapers. And there's the rub. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    JAPAN, LIBYA, SIMON OF ARABIA, POLITICS AND BEYOND

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., March 20, 2011 -- Headlines flash by from Tokyo, Tripoli, Washington and Wall Street and the mouth begs the mind for mini-reality checks for the sake of intellectual honesty and integrity, or just plain sanity. [MORE]

    Flashpoint
    NEWT'S ADULTERATED POLITICS

    by Charles J. Reid

    GILROY, Calif. -- After watching former House Speaker Newt Gingrich on the Christian Network explain that he committed adultery because he was "so passionate" about America, a quick image flashed across my mind in a daydream moment. [MORE]

    AR Essay
    REFORMING THE CATHOLIC CHURCH

    by Michael P. Riccards

    HAMILTON, N.J. -- Most recently, Pope Benedict XVI sent a special team to Ireland to review the public evidence over massive clerical pedophilia in that once devout nation. The team was headed up by Sean Cardinal O'Malley of Boston, who had won plaudits over his handling of a similar mess in Boston. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    IS THERE A 'BEST CASE' SCENARIO FOR JAPAN?

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., March 16, 2011 -- The banged-up flatbed bounced and bumped at 65mph, headed southbound on I-95 in moderate traffic, when a wheel came flying off. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE PERSISTENCE OF FASCISM, AND THE FIGHT TO STOP IT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In a op-ed piece for The New York Times written in April 1944, Vice President Henry Wallace offered this definition of fascism: "A fascist is one whose lust for money or power is combined with such an intensity of intolerance toward those of other races, parties, classes, religions, cultures, regions or nations as to make him ruthless in his use of deceit or violence to attain his ends." [MORE]

    Tech Review
    NO SUICIDE IN THE HHO CAR-CAR

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., March 11, 2011 -- Yesterday, March 10, 2011, I looked and saw the needle was below Empty and pulled into a Racetrack gas station in Bradenton to put in $10.22 of regular gas in my 2002 Saturn SC-2, which has a 1.9-liter engine and runs at 125 horsepower, and then I reset the miles counter to 0. [MORE]

    Ed Tubbs
    GUESS WHO?

    by Ed Tubbs

    PALM SPRINGS, Calif. -- Guess who? [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    BIG BUSINESS PAID FOR THE BEDS, AND NOW REPUBLICANS LIE IN THEM

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Historian and satirist Thomas Carlyle said "a lie cannot live." However, Mark Twain casually remarked, "It shows that he did not know how to tell them." [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    SOME COMMON-SENSE ALTERNATIVES TO FISCAL AUSTERITY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- There was an interesting post last week by Simon Johnson, the former chief economist for the International Monetary Fund, on The New York Times' "Economix" blog. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    A BITE OF THE BAD APPLE

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- As someone who works with technology every single day, I pride myself on knowing a lot about it. I manage blogs for other people, I give talks about social networking, and I'm always reading up or playing with the latest gadget. [MORE]

    Momentum
    CRY OUT LIKE CASSANDRA

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Whenever I become downhearted over man's inhumanity to man, I recognize that man's inhumanity to women is even more frightening. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WE ALL LIVE IN WISCONSIN

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Conservatives heaped plenty of hosannas upon the memory of Ronald Reagan on the occasion of the centennial of his birth earlier this month. [MORE]

    Reporting: Libya
    'DELUSIONAL' GHADDAFI MOVES CLOSER TO A FALL

    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    LONDON, March 1, 2011 -- The net that seeks Libyan dictator Muammar Ghaddafi is being closed tighter and tighter, day by day, as many people of his inner circle are defecting, including his interior minister, ambassadors, high-ranking government officials and his voluptuous "favorite nurse." [MORE]

    Reporting: WikiLeaks London
    BARRING SUCCESS ON APPEAL, ASSANGE IS HEADED BACK TO SWEDEN

    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    LONDON, England, Feb. 24, 2011 -- WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is to be extradited to Sweden to face allegations of rape and sexual assault, according to the ruling of a British court here today. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    ABC-TV: OSCAR-WORTHY, BUT JOURNALISTICALLY UNSOUND

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The last segment on every Friday's broadcast of ABC's "World News with Diane Sawyer" is a "Person of the Week." [MORE]

    FULL-TIME EMPLOYEE VS. BUSINESS OWNER

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I've worked for other companies, and I've owned my own business. The grass is greener on the other side of the fence, no matter which side you're on. [MORE]

    Passings: David Sanchez-Juliao
    WISDOM OF THE STREET

    by Ron Kenner

    HOLLYWOOD, Feb. 26, 2011 -- Another great South American literary figure is gone, but his spirit informs every dedicated writer - and especially his friends. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    EGYPT AND THE TRIUMPH OF PEOPLE POWER

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt., Feb. 17, 2011 -- Did you believe that it was going to happen this way? [MORE]

    The Willies
    NOWHERE TO GO

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Feb. 18, 2011 -- Gov. Rick Scott of Florida, a very rich Republican who ran as an outsider promising to cut government and spur the creation of 700,000 jobs, tapped into a rich vein of controversy recently when he declared that the state would reject $2.4-billion the Obama Administration offered as a down payment on a high-speed rail system linking Tampa to Orlando, and later, possibly, to Jacksonville and Miami. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    SEXUAL ASSAULT COVERAGE BY MEDIA SHOWS DOUBLE STANDARD, PATERNALISM, AND SEXISM

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Lara Logan, CBS News chief foreign affairs correspondent, was beaten and sexually assaulted on Feb. 11, while on assignment in Cairo to report on the revolution on the day Hosni Mubarak resigned as president. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    MY BRIEF TIME IN BASEBALL

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Spring training got underway this past week with those four magical words every baseball fan loves to hear: "pitchers and catchers report." [MORE]

    Breaking News
    N.Y.S.E. BOUGHT OUT BY GERMANY'S FRANKFURT ECHANGE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Feb. 15, 2011, 9:30 a.m. -- Just two days ago, the New York Times ran a very short story saying that anonymous Deutsch Börse officials in Frankfurt, Germany, had denied a story in the Wall Street Journal several days before saying that the German exchange, based in Frankfurt but a global player, was buying the New York Stock Exchange, home of the Big Board and its storied trading floor, and now officially known as NYSE Euronext. [MORE]

    Constance
    TO BURN OR NOT TO BURN

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- The thought that crossed my mind this morning was so incongruous I thought someone else must have been behind it. [MORE]

    Reporting: The Egyptian Revolution
    IN LIBERATION SQUARE, EGYPTIANS CHEER FREEDOM AT LAST

    by Joe Shea

    FEB. 11, 2011 -- Vast, cheering throngs jammed Tahrir Square in Cairo today to celebrate the liberation of their country from the autocratic, corruption-ridden and deadly rule of President Hosni Mubarak after 18 days of peaceful demonstrations forced the Egyptian Army to remove him. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    HUNGRY, BROKE AND ANGRY PEOPLE ARE THE FUEL OF REVOLUTIONS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If you want to know why there was a revolution in Tunisia, why a revolution is in progress in Egypt and why several other governments elsewhere around the world are now balanced on a knife edge, consider these factors. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    OBAMA'S IRONIC LEGACY: AN UNCONSTITUTIONAL ACT

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The U.S. House of Representatives this week did something it should have done years ago - it blocked the continuation of three of the more controversial parts of the PATRIOT Act. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE FANNY PACK IS MAKING A COMEBACK

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Brace yourself, I've got some horrible news. [MORE]

    The Willies
    'DO I LOOK LIKE I'M ON A DIET?'

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Feb. 9, 2011, 9:00 p.m. -- "Do I look like I'm on a diet?" That was invariably my reply when a hostess or waiter asked me if I wanted "diet or regular" at any meal. I'm at least 115 pounds overweight, and yet that snarky response may have saved my life, I learned tonight. [MORE]

    Media
    THE VOICE OF THE MOMENT

    by Ron Kenner

    LOS ANGELES, Feb. 10, 2011 -- Until the current massive uprising in Egypt, who could have guessed? Wow! Did you watch or read the news yesterday? Thrilling! Stunning! [MORE]

    A.R. Editorial
    ISRAEL SWIMS AGAINST THE CURRENT

    by Joe Shea

    Now that Hosni Mubarak has stepped down and his regime is falling with him, will Israel be less secure? Even with its powerful army, navy and air force, nuclear arsenal and shrewd, capable leaders - and their steadfast American ally - they say yes. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    VERMONT TAKES ON THE CONCEPT OF CORPORATE PERSONHOOD

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- "The business corporation is an artificial state-created entity with unlimited life; highly favorable techniques for acquiring, accumulating, and retaining vast wealth through economic transactions having nothing to do with politics; and only one purpose - making money. Human beings, on the other hand, die, do not enjoy economic advantages like limited liability and, most important, have a conscience that sometimes transcends crude economic self-interest." [MORE]

    Reporting: New Mexico
    NEW MEXICO COLD CRISIS IN ITS 6TH DAY; THOUSANDS WITHOUT HEAT

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    TAOS, N.M. (UPDATE Feb. 8, 2011, 7:20 p.m. ET)-- Nearly half of the New Mexico Natural Gas users in the coldest areas of New Mexico entered a sixth day without heat as a new snow storm perched along the Colorado border promising more sub-zero temperatures, snow, and high winds tonight. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    'FOLLOWING ORDERS' IS NO DEFENSE FOR COLD-BLOODED MURDER

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa.. --- A man who killed 100 sled dogs has received not a prison sentence but workers' compensation from a British Columbia agency. The man successfully proved he suffered post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) after he claimed he was ordered to kill the dogs. [MORE]

    Media
    AMERICA IN EGYPT: NO MORE FRANKENSTEINS

    by Ron Kenner

    LOS ANGELES, Calif., Feb. 3, 12:50 p.m. PST -- With some 47 million people living in poverty, 50 million without health insurance, millions jobless and millions more underemployed, President Barak Obama could be less circumspect and more passionate about stimulating our economy. We need urgent measures for these urgent times. [MORE]

    The Weatherman
    WORSE WINTERS WAIT AHEAD, FORECASTER SAYS

    by Justin Roberti

    STATE COLLEGE, Pa., Feb. 4, 2011 -- If you don't like this winter, it may be time to move to Florida: There are a lot more ahead. [MORE]

    Constance
    THE LAST BLUE RIBBON

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Just when you think you have everything in place, your world starts spinning again and everything goes off kilter. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    GIVE ME LIBERTY OR GIVE ME VODAFONE

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Feb. 4, 2011 -- Anti-government protestors in Cairo have learned that freedom is not free. [MORE]

    An A.R. Editorial
    THE NEW REVOLT

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Updated Jan. 29, 2011-- Americans don't ask their country to get involved in the internal political struggles of the nations it interacts with, and the general rule is that we don't. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    TV WEATHER PEOPLE GET SECOND WIN OF SEASON

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind., Feb. 4, 2011 -- We've spent the last two days here in Indiana trying to fend off the snow and ice storms that blanketed the entire eastern half of the country, and snowed me in for two days. Luckily, I own the company, so I can work from home if I want to. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THIS COLUMN IS BEING RECORDED FOR QUALITY PURPOSES

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- While many people, including our president, are calling for "civility of debate," I fear that ship sailed long ago. The real issue today is understanding the debasement of our language, and how we in America have traveled from George Carlin to George Orwell. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    WARNING: TOP SECRET COLUMN

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I wanted to be a spy when I was a kid. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    FOOTBALL, FRATERNITIES AND OTHER INTELLECTUAL CONCERNS

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The $50 million Burton Family Football Complex at the University of Connecticut may be nameless soon. Robert G. Burton, who had donated about $3 million to help fund the stadium, wants his money back and his family's name erased from UConn football. He also informed UConn he will cancel his $50,000 a season suite in the stadium. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    EGYPT AND THE 'GIMME' GENERATION

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Jan. 31, 2011 -- Looting, civil unrest, and a perceived lack of direction of the "revolutionary" movement in Egypt seem to have forced America and others to rethink their relationship to President Hosni Mubarak, and revealed the sad truths of the "Gimmetocracy." [MORE]

    Dark Humor
    MEMO TO MUBARAK: HOW TO GET OUT ALIVE

    by Joe Shea

    There's a lot to do when you have to flee the country you've led for 30 years. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    HISTORY WARNS US ON THE EGYPTIAN CRISIS

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BOCA RATON, Fla., Jan. 29, 2011 -- The demonstrators in Cairo met by riot police, tear gas, and a gathering of soldiers and tanks should remind American and other diplomats of events 58 years ago this month, when Lt. Col. Gamal Abdel Nasser Hussein shook up Egypt, the Suez Canal and the world. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    HEALTH CARE REFORM DEAD? NOT IN VERMONT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- While the national media was fixated last week on the kabuki theater of the new Republican majority in the U.S. House voting to repeal last year's health care reform bill, they missed another, more important, development in Vermont. [MORE]

    Constance
    ABOUT THE SPRATTS

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Jack Spratt had nothing on us. He and his wife were a perfect complement to each other. He could eat no fat, she could eat no lean - and between the two of them they kept the platter clean. [MORE]

    Reporting: Police Killings
    TARGETS IN BLUE: MULTIPLE SHOOTINGS OF POLICEMEN SHOCK THE NATION

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Jan. 24, 2011, 4 p.m. -- Two St. Petersburg, Fla., officers and a deputy U.S. Marshal are the latest in a series of shootings that have targeted multiple police officers and killed four in the past week. Among them were eight officers wounded in the states of Indiana, Oregon, Washington and Michigan on Sunday. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    A BEGINNER'S GUIDE TO FACEBOOK

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS -- So, are you on The Facebook yet? It's all the rage with the young people these days, them and their Tweeters and MySpacers, and the YouTubers. The Facebook is one of those, whatchamacallit, social Internetworks. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WEALTHY AMERICANS MAY PRESERVE OUR DEMOCRACY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The problems our nation faces in January 2011 pale by comparison to the world of January 1941. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    BREAKING CHINA - LEGALLY

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa., Jan. 21, 2011 -- Chinese President Hu Jintao's visit to the United States this past week has been met by both praise and political posturing. [MORE]

    Constance
    HOME

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- The blizzard that drew New York City to a halt last week filled me with yearning, or, shall I say, a heart-rending longing for home. Two weeks earlier, over the same television screen, I saw one million people huddled together to watch the ball drop to the sound of voices counting down the last 10 seconds to midnight, welcoming in the year 2011. [MORE]

    Reporting: Great Britain
    NEW IMMIGRATION RULES IN BRITAIN FORCE STUDENTS TO LOOK ELSEWHERE

    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    LONDON -- The new British coalition government of Conservatives and Liberal Democrats has announced tough new measures to control immigration, including a halt to acceptance of applications for Tier 1 general immigration and making student visas harder to obtain, tuition fees vastly more expensive and jobs to pay the fees far more difficult to find. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    HATE AND HATE SPEECH: WHAT WE KNOW

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Just about anything that could be said about the murders in Tucson have been said. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    VERMONT SHOWS HOW TO KEEP ALIVE THE LOST ART OF CIVILITY IN POLITICS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Last week, I was at the Statehouse in Montpelier to cover the inauguration of Peter Shumlin as Vermont's 81st governor. [MORE]

    AR Essay
    THE SUM OF ALL POLITICS

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Jan. 10, 2011 -- It was just about this time last Sunday night when I tuned into WFLA 970-AM here in Tampa Bay to hear George Noory and got Bill Cunningham instead. Seconds later, his guest was saying of President Obama, "He's a Marxist! He's a socialist! He's a Communist!" [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE AMERICA IDEA MAKES US EXCEPTIONAL

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- One of the bedrock tenets of conservatism is the idea of American Exceptionalism - that the United States is the greatest nation in the world. [MORE]

    Reporting: The Giffords Shooting
    FROM NOBODY TO SOMEBODY

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Jan. 10, 2011 -- Jared Lee Loughner must have known he was a nobody. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    FRAT BOYS AND NAVAL OFFICERS

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- When the Norfolk Virginian-Pilot two weeks ago published on its internet page three videos made four years ago by the executive officer of the aircraft carrier U.S.S. Enterprise, it unleashed a firestorm that would sink the career of a decorated officer. [MORE]

    Reporting: Rep. Giffords Shooting
    TONE OF CIVIL DEBATE HAD A ROLE, SHERIFF SAYS

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Jan. 9, 2012 -- The fires of the 2010 Congressional campaign may have claimed their last victim. [MORE]

    Reporting: Rep. Giffords Shooting
    A TOUGH DEMOCRAT HAS ALWAYS FACED TOUGH CHOICES

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Jan. 10, 2011 -- You don't get elected to Congress as a 40-year-old female Democrat in Tucson, Ariz., unless you're prepared to fight for what you believe in and ready to engage in the hard-nosed give-and-take of the highly partisan House of Representatives of 2011. [MORE]

    Reporting: Rep. Giffords Shooting
    COVERAGE: MOST AMERICANS WAITED - AND WAITED - FOR MORE NEWS by Mark Scheinbaum

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Jan. 10, 2011 -- The shootings in Tucson caught downsized newspapers, superficial cable news networks, and broadcast news networks covering sports, in an even more deficient "weekend" mode. Even the daily Tucson Citizen and the Arizona Republic couldn't update their sites - but neither could the much-respected St. Petersburg Times. [MORE]

    Reporting: Rep. Giffords Shooting
    WHY WAS U.S. JUDGE JOHN ROLL THERE?

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M, Jan. 9, 2011 -- One question among many that will arise from the Tucson rampage is why U.S. District Court Chief Judge John McCarthy Roll of Arizona was at the event. Appointed by President George H.W. Bush in 1991 and elevated to chief judge of the United States District Court for Arizona in 2006. He was also a former U.S. Attorney and had 40 years of law and service to his credit. [MORE]

    Reporting: Rep. Giffords Shooting
    ONLINE VANDALS RUSH TO REWRITE HISTORY

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Jan. 8, 2011, 4:31 p.m. ET (UPDATED) -- Like so many Americans, the 22-year-old man, Jared Lee Loughner, identified as the shooter of Tucson, Ariz., Democratic Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords and 18 others this morning at a constituent event outside a Safeway store, had a Facebook profile. But it may have been created by a right-wing hacker who wanted to pin blame for the shooting on the far left. [MORE]

    AR Essay
    A CALL FOR JIHAD AGAINST MUSLIM EXTREMISTS

    by Dr. Hubertus Hoffman

    LONDON -- When Al Qaeda or other radicals attack and kill Christians in Muslim countries like Egypt, Pakistan, Iraq or Indonesia "in the name of Allah and the Koran," they offend the Holy Book of more than one billion Muslims, they offend the Prophet and they offend Allah in the worst way possible. [MORE]

    The Willies
    THE HUMAN DIE-OFF

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- Back in late 1979, when I was writing a story called "Notes On the End of the World" for the L.A. Weekly, then in its first year of publication, I interviewed a UCLA professor of astrophysics, who made a statement to me I have never forgotten: "Nothing in nature," he said, "ever moves in a straight line." [MORE]

    American Essay
    IGNORANCE, NOT MALICE, COMPELS THE RIGHT'S DEMAND FOR BUDGET CUTS

    by Ed Tubbs

    SAN JOSE, Calif. -- I was recently asked to read an email from a "conservative" that included the charge that "Obama, in just two years, has managed to double the national debt." [MORE]

    Momentum
    SADLY, HATE ALWAYS HAS A HOME HERE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- To me, one of last year's more interesting news stories was about urine in a library. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    PRESIDENT OBAMA'S STILL LOOKING FOR HIS MOJO

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Has President Obama got his mojo back? [MORE]

    Free The Cloud: Part IV
    REACHING THE PINNACLE: TRULY OPEN WEB SERVICES AND CLOUDS

    by Andrew Oram

    CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Free software in the cloud isn't just a nice-sounding ideal, or even an efficient way to push innovation forward. Opening the cloud also opens the path to a bountiful environment of computing for all. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    TURNING WASTE INTO ENERGY IN VERMONT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    BRATTLEBORO, Vt. -- While too many of our leaders in Washington pretend that global warming, peak oil and the growing numbers of the hungry in our nation are just figments of the liberal imagination, I recently got a glimpse of a project that, when fully operational, will take care of all three problems and provide jobs in the process. [MORE]

    Breakthrough
    TESTING VALIDATES HYDRINO THEORY

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 18, 2010 -- A remarkable new energy source from fractional hydrogen will allow a gallon of ordinary water to become the energy equivalent of 200 barrels of oil, a team of physicists working near the onetime New Jersey laboratories of Thomas Edison and Albert Einstein is saying. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    KARL THE CURMUDGEON HATES, LIKE, WHATEVER

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "OMG," said Karl. "Did you see the list of the most annoying words of the year?" [MORE]

    American Way
    WHAT A GLORIOUS BLIZZARD!

    by Mitchel Cohen

    BROOKLYN, N.Y., Dec. 27, 2010-- What a glorious, glorious old-time blizzard! [MORE]

    Make My Day
    IT SUCKS TO BE A BRIT

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- It must suck to be British. [MORE]


    THE SHAME OF BUSH V. GORE STILL STAINS AMERICA

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Ten years ago this week, democracy and fair play got mugged by five Supreme Court justices who overruled the will of more than 50 million Americans and made George W. Bush president. [MORE]

    Reporting: London
    WIKILEAKS FOUNDER IS FREED UNTIL JAN. 11 ON $376,000 BAIL

    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    LONDON, Dec. 16, 2010 -- Julian Assange, who exposed thousands of stolen U.S. diplomatic notes over the past last few weeks as founder of the controversial file-sharing site WikiLeaks, won his freedom on sex -related allegations from a London-area prison this morning - at least until a Jan. 11, 2011 hearing - after Justice Duncan B.W. Ouseley of Britain's High Court noted Assange turned himself in when he learned Swedish authorities sought to question him. [MORE]

    Poetry
    SONNET FOR THE NEW YEAR

    Joseph Patrick Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 29. 2010 -- I created this sonnet a long time ago at a delicatessen that's now torn down at the end of Wilshire Blvd. in Santa Monica, Calif. It's meant to be read in the last minutes of the old year to welcome in the new one. [MORE]

    Verbatim
    FROM PBS: NEGROPONTE ON HOLBROOKE

    by PBS NewsHour

    NEW YORK, Dec. 14, 2010 -- Below is a transcript of Tuesday evening's NewsHour segment on Richard Holbrooke's life, featuring editor Susan Glassner and U.S. Ambassador John Negroponte.. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    DAYS OF OUR REPAIR

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The car died. Just choked, sputtered, and died right there on the highway. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    OBAMA WAVERS, AND DEMOCRACY HANGS IN THE BALANCE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform disbanded last week, which is good news for the nation. [MORE]

    American Weather
    BLIZZARD'S AFTERMATH IS COLD WEATHER FOR THE SOUTH

    by Alex Sosnowski

    STATE COLLEGE, Pa., Dec. 13, 2010 -- A storm over the Northwest that started the week will spread a zone of snow and ice over the southeastern United States Wednesday into Thursday. [MORE]

    WILL YOU PLEASE WELCOME BACK: THE MOON!

    by Joseph Patrick Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 21, 2010 -- After 465 years, The American Reporter welcomes back the Moon at Winter Solstice. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    FOR MADOFF'S SON, WAS DEATH THE LAST REFUGE OF INNOCENCE?

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    SANTA FE, N.M.. Dec. 11, 2010 -- Mark Madoff, 46, eldest son of convicted Wall Street scam-meister Bernie Madoff was found dead this morning. It looks like he killed himself. [MORE]

    Reporting: London
    A SIMPLE SAINT, SLEEPING ON THE FLOOR, FOSTERS A YOGA REVOLUTION

    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    READING, U.K., Dec. 11, 2010 -- Mulibir Rai had been suffering since 2004 from severe gout, a disease that causes painful swelling of the toes due to excessive uric acid in the bloodstream, and arthritis-like symptoms in his joints. He took high doses of anti-inflammatory and other drugs to suppress the acute pain, and their side-effects included unbearable headaches and nausea. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    KARL THE CURMUDGEON MEETS A JOLLY STRANGER

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Man, I'm tired of the TSA," said Karl, my friend and part-time curmudgeon. "The groping, the full-body scans, the loss of personal freedoms." [MORE]

    AR Exclusive
    VENERABLE "SHEARSON" NAME NOW BELONGS TO A FLA. BROKERAGE HOUSE

    American Reporter Staff

    NEW YORK, N.Y., Dec. 9, 2010 -- A Wall Street name known and respected for more than a century until the crippling subprime bust will live on, the owner of a Florida stock brokerage house that acquired the name vowed today. [MORE]

    The Willies
    SORRY, MR. PRESIDENT!

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 8, 2010 -- Mr. President, you are one of the greatest people of the past 40 years, and I heartily support you - except on this deal with the Republicans over tax cuts for the wealthy. I don't think we need an extension of unemployment benefits as badly as you do, and I don't think trading that extension for billions in tax cuts is worth it, either. [MORE]

    The Willies
    WIKILEAKS: WHAT NOW?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 8, 2010 -- Now, Julian Assange's "insurance" file - the secret cache of documents he has vowed to release if any harm comes to him - is his greatest liability. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    MY SON HAS A FEW QUESTIONS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Sure, Buddy, you can ask me anything." [MORE]

    The Willies
    WHY THE FOX FEARS THE HOUND

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 4, 2010 -- It has been fascinating, and a little scary, to watch FoxNews unfold its attack on WikiLeaks. Today, for instance, a man from a private security company, the International Advisory Group told viewers to support designation of Julian Assange as an "enemy combatant" - presumably to set him up for the assassination some conservatives have urged. [MORE]

    Documents
    FULL TEXT OF CABLE ON CHINA ATTACKS ON GOOGLE

    American Reporter Staff

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 6, 2010 -- Here is the full text of the confidential U.S. State Dept. cable released by WikiLeaks, describing the cyberattacks mounted by the Chinese government against Google, the world's top search engine and a rival of the Chinese search engine Baidu.com. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WIKILEAKS: THE ANTIDOTE TO GOVERNMENT LIES

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt., Dec. 3, 2010 -- Over the past few months, Julian Assange and his team at WikiLeaks.org have done more to expose the mendacity of U.S. foreign policy than anyone since Daniel Ellsberg. [MORE]

    Momentum
    LING CHI LITE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Ling Chi, also known as "the death of a thousand cuts," was a method of public execution in China that involved cutting off pieces of a person's body until he or she died. Banned in 1905, this drastic punishment first became a metaphor and then came to rest in the English language as a cliché. [MORE]

    The Willies
    EVEN IN SECRET, AMERICA LOOKS GOOD

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 1, 2010 -- Secretary of State Hillary Clinton may not appreciate their release, but the State Dept. cables I've seen on WikiLeaks are nothing new - and they make America look good. [MORE]

    Media Beat
    WIKILEAKS IS DEMYSTIFYING 'DIPLOMACY'

    by Norman Solomon

    SAN FRANCISCO, Nov. 29, 2010 -- Compared to the kind of secret cables that WikiLeaks has just shared with the world, everyday public statements from government officials are exercises in make-believe. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    FAIRNESS AND THE BRISTOL STOMP

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Almost all children hear a set of conflicting statements from their parents, relatives, and friends. They're told if they study hard, if they work hard, they can achieve whatever they want. It's the "American Dream." But they're also told that life isn't always fair. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    PETTY SELFISHNESS MOCKS AMERICAN IDEALS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The light of late November streaming through the bare trees of the hillside I live on in Vermont summons memories of another late November afternoon, when three shots from a rifle altered the course of history. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    OUT OF THE POOL!

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Personal safety devices violates health and safety laws in England. [MORE]

    The Willies
    WHAT I'M THANKFUL FOR

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Nov. 25, 2010 -- When they turned out my lights two weeks ago, I had a neighbor who loaned me $200, and I was able to pay him back from my Social Security check two days later. I'm grateful, indeed, to him. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    OLIVES & ZINGERS: A THANKSGIVING TRADITION

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Thanksgiving has always been one of those weird holidays. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    ALTERNATIVES TO AUSTERITY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- U.S. Rep. Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.) is the only person sitting on President Obama's deficit reduction commission who is a progressive. [MORE]

    The Willies
    THE GUN UNDER GRANDMA'S CUSHION

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Nov. 19, 2010 -- Over the phone, his voice was raspy but it carried that certain weight federal agents' always do. He was growing sick of the constant criticism, the charges he called "false" being hurled at the Transportation Security Administration and its screeners at America's airports. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    THE ECONOMICS OF ROBIN HOOD

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Nov. 17, 2010 -- Bemoaning Queen Elizabeth's wealth dropping to a mere $695,000,000 CNBC-TV's David Faber wondered aloud if the Monarchy had been depleting assets like "sort of Sir Robin (Hood) of Locksley." [MORE]

    The Willies
    CHINESE TAKE-OUT

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Nov. 15, 2010 -- When I was very young, I had a nightmare: Chinese soldiers rushed into our house, found me sitting in my father's chair, and with a sword swiftly cut me in half. [MORE]

    First Person
    'I WILL NOT BE GROPED'

    by John Tyner

    SAN DIEGO, Calif., Nov. 13, 2010 -- This morning, I tried to fly out of San Diego International Airport but was refused by the TSA. I had been somewhat prepared for this eventuality. I have been reading about the millimeter wave and backscatter X-ray machines and the possible harm to health as well as the vivid pictures they create of people's naked bodies. Not wanting to go through them, I had done my research on the TSA's Web site prior to traveling to see if SAN had them. From all indications, they did not. When I arrived at the security line, I found that the TSA's Web site was out of date. SAN does in fact utilize backscatter X-ray machines. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    DEFICIT COMMISSION TAKES AIM AT SOCIAL SECURITY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I'll be 50 next year. I've been paying into Social Security since I was 12, when I picking cucumbers in my first summer job. [MORE]

    The Willies
    MOURNING IN AMERICA

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Nov. 4, 2010 -- After seven hours in the Florida sun greeting voters for the Democrats, I left to get breakfast and ran out of gas as soon as I left the parking lot. Stuck in the median gap, I crossed myself and said a prayer for help; in about 30 seconds, Crystina Page stopped in her old blue van. She steered as I pushed the car across the busy street into a quiet driveway. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    OH, NO! CONAN O'BRIEN IS BACK!

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BOCA RATON, Fla., Nov. 8, 2010 -- On his official "Team Coco" Web site, the late-night-tv return of Conan O'Brien is summed up with this note:

    If you've missed ANY of the awesome CONAN promos that have been on tv
    in the run up to our new show on Monday? WE'VE GOT EM ALL!
    . [MORE]

    On Nastive Ground
    DON'T BLAME ME. I'M FROM VERMONT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- While the rest of the nation seemingly rushed headlong off a cliff on Tuesday night and allowed the party that got us into the economic mess we're in back into power, Vermont followed its own political path. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    THE POST-ELECTION STOCK MARKET IRONY

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Nov. 6, 2010 -- Last night's election results have been "discounted" in the truest sense by not just Wall Street but by most foreign stock markets. It is a good refresher course in the fact that markets are usually anticipatory. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    DEAR POLITICIANS: PLEASE SHUT UP NOW

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Dear politicians, political consultants, activists, and pundits: The election is over. The votes have been cast. You won or lost. [MORE]

    Momentum
    'BYE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON -- Last week, the Brattleboro Reformer, my home paper, not only fired me, they fired my mother. [MORE]

    Politics 2010
    A RED TIDE OF CHANGE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Nov. 3, 2010 (UPDATED Nov, 5, 2010, 12:30 A.M. ET) -- An irresistible combination of anonymous and sometimes foreign money, the rage of Republican seniors, Democratic voters' fears and apathy, and the unpredictable arrival of an infantile but influential new faction of the GOP called the Tea Party swept away the last vestiges of President Barack Obama's hope and change agenda last night, handing control of the House of Representatives to Republican conservatives and leaving the once-strong 10-seat Democratic majority in the United States Senate hanging by one uncertain vote. [Update: The final U.S. Senate results from CNN show Republicans witrh 47 seats and Democrats with 52. The final CNN results for the House of Representatives shows 186 Democratic seats and 239 Republican seats. The CNN site did not distinguish between Independents and the major parties.] [MORE]

    Make My Day
    MARRIAGE ADVICE FOR THE NEWLYWEDS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- My little brother is finally getting married at the ripe old age of 29. And as his older brother - someone who got married when he was a 12-year-old punk - I have several pearls of wisdom that I can offer after nearly 17 years of wedded bliss. [MORE]

    The Rally
    SANITY AND/OR FEAR

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 30, 2010 -- The biggest joke was the size of the crowd. I've seen a million people crowded into Washington for a May Day anti-war rally during Vietnam, and there weren't a million people there. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A 40 YEAR-OLD QUESTION MAY BE ANSWERED NOV. 2

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- On the eve of the 1970 midterm elections, economist and Democratic Party stalwart John Kenneth Galbraith wrote a short book entitled "Who Needs The Democrats and What It Takes to Be Needed." [MORE]

    Reporting: Jon Stewart Rally
    JON STEWART RALLIES FUN AND CONTROVERSY

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 27, 2010, 6:35PM -- Ariana Huffington says she is bringing 10,000 people with her on 200 buses that leave Flushing, New York, at 6AM Saturday morning, Oct. 30, for the "Rally to Restore Sanity and/or Fear" on the National Mall in Washington, D.C., from 1 TO 3PM ET on Saturday afternoon. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE POLITICIAN'S CREED: BRINGING IN THE RECEIPTS

    by Walter and Rosemary Brasch

    HARRISBURG, Pa. -- It will be cold tonight in Pennsylvania, but that means nothing to dozens of politicians who are in their final week of a ubiquitous campaign to get a government job. [MORE]

    Momentum
    FISH, BARREL, GUN

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Not that I have anything bad to say about airline pilots. We trust them with our lives, and God bless them, everyone. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    WITH TEA, I'M A WINNER IN WINTER

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I used to enjoy the cold weather. I don't mean "Winter is so beautiful after a snowfall" or anything namby-pamby like that. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    SWISS BUILD TUNNELS; AMERICANS MAKE EXCUSES

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- There was a big celebration in Switzerland last week as 20 years of drilling ended on what will ultimately become the world's longest rail tunnel. [MORE]

    AR Endorsements
    AMERICAN REPORTER ENDORSES BROWN, BOXER, CRIST AND SCOTT

    American Reporter Staff

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 24, 2010 -- There are no easy choices in America these days. [MORE]

    The Willies
    BRITAIN'S BUDGET CUTS WILL BRING VIOLENCE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 22, 2010 -- With cuts in welfare payments and hikes in public housing rents - and 490,000 job cuts in the public sector - Britain's Conservative Party Prime Minister David Cameron hopes to slash a budget deficit that is just over half of that in the United States. But as he watches the reaction in France among workers rioting in the streets of Paris, Lyon, Nice and Marseilles, among other cities, over retirement age issues, he must wonder what is in store for London when the hammer comes down there. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    TV ADS DITCH DEMOCRACY 30 SECONDS AT A TIME

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa.--There's good news this week. There's only about two weeks before the midterm elections. [MORE]

    Momentum
    VERMONT IS GOOD FOR PEOPLE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Just in time to influence the Vermont gubernatorial election, Forbes Magazine has released its annual report on the best business states in the Union. Vermont comes in 45th - up two spots from last year. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    KILLING DEMOCRACY, ONE DOLLAR AT A TIME

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Back in January, I wrote about the Supreme Court's decision to grant corporations - in the name of preserving free speech - the right to spend unlimited sums of money in political campaigns. [MORE]

    Momentum
    HOW LOW CAN WE GO?

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Young violinist Tyler Clementi is on the cover of People Magazine. But he doesn't know it. He jumped off the George Washington Bridge on September 22. [MORE]

    AR Editorial
    CHILEAN RESCUE EFFORT WEAVES A RAGGED THREAD OF HOPE INTO A FLAG OF TRIUMPH

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 13, 2010 -- On the broad shoulders of a young Chilean miner the hopes and hearts of a battered nation and a worried world were lifted to the surface of a remote desert mine where he once labored in obscurity, only to find himself Tuesday night in a glaring spotlight cast by more than 2,000 journalists from 200 countries after he spent 68 days in captivity with 32 colleagues half a mile beneath the earth. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    OUR NATION - AND ITS POLITICS - IS CHANGING

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt., Oct. 8, 2010 -- Political reporters love narratives, and love to cling to them long after reality turns their story lines and conventional wisdom to ashes. [MORE]

    Momentum
    FINDING PARKER

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Sherlock Holmes disliked women. Sam Spade trusted only his secretary. Mike Hammer wasn't afraid to kill them. Philip Marlowe? He didn't like anybody. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    MY KNEES ARE KILLING ME

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- My knees are killing me. I'm either suffering from Old Guy Knee or Big Guy Knee. I like to think I'm suffering from Former Athlete Knee, which is usually a combination of both. [MORE]

    American Opinion
    AFRAID IN AMERICA?

    by Stephan Zimmermann

    PRESQUE ISLE, Me. -- To judge by the blogs and local and national media, America has regressed and succumbed to an irrational fear of the Muslim religious faith. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    AIR FARES'S CHEAP - JUST WATCH OUT FOR SURCHARGES

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- America's airlines - they're the ones who told passengers to take a flying leap - have wallpapered the country with ads focusing upon how inexpensive their basic airfares are. [MORE]

    Constance
    THE THOUGHT THAT COUNTS

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- There is an old saying: "The more things change the more they remain the same," and, still another, "Times change and we change with them." [MORE]

    The Willies
    ARE JEWS THE CHOSEN PEOPLE?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 2, 2010 -- As leaders and groups emerge throughout history, it is a universal precept that they are tested by trial and tragedy. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    KARL THE CURMUDGEON FINDS FACEBOOK

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Kid, why do you insist on playing on that Facespace?" asked Karl, grabbing my mobile phone. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    REPUBLICANS PLEDGE A RETURN TO PARTISAN GRIDLOCK

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt., Oct. 1, 2010 -- The House Republicans' long-awaited "Pledge to America" came out last week, and it's hard to believe that they could cram so many faulty assumptions, misstatements, fuzzy math and just plain lies into one 21-page document. [MORE]

    Momentum
    MOM IS MOVED

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The old Italian crooner with the bouffant brown toupee and a career that topped out opening for Don Rickles in Atlantic City had a hard time hitting some of the notes, but there was one note he was certain of. [MORE]

    Constance
    NO SMOKING - BUT IT'S O.K. TO KINDLE

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- A dozen or so years ago I wrote an article called "The Handwriting on the Wall," and in it I mentioned how I had laughed years earlier when a woman objected to anyone smoking in an elevator and took her case to court. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    GO BIG OR GO HOME: THE CHOICE FOR THE DEMOCRATS IN NOVEMBER

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Politics is all about salesmanship and getting your message across to voters. [MORE]

    The Willies
    WASHINGTON POST GETS AN EARFUL AFTER UFO REVELATIONS

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 28, 2010 -- The Washington Post exists in a stratosphere of journalism inhabited by only half a dozen newspapers in the world, if that. It has an exceptional reputation for fine work, and its original reporting is envied throughout the world - except when it comes to UFOs. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE LAST ROSE FEST

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Last Sunday, my mother's Florida condominium complex, Lauderdale West, threw a party in her honor. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    IN DEFENSE OF HUMOR WRITING

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- It's the killer question that every writer dreads: [MORE]

    The Willies
    CRASHING THE TEA PARTY

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 18, 2010 -- I saw a curious thing today. There was a small blue insect with a hard carapace that was going up and down the screen on my lanai, which is almost 8 ft. high, apparently searching for a way to get out to the world of wind and stars and trees and fellow bugs. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE NATIONAL SECURITY STATE IS OUT OF CONTROL

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Now that the commemorations and ceremonies marking the ninth anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001. attacks are passed, it's a good time to ask a few questions about the rough beast that was born that day. [MORE]

    Momentum
    GETTING WET

    by Joyce Marcel

    PLANTATION, Fla. -- It's been raining so hard here in South Florida that the canal beyond our backyard overflowed and the ducks were swimming on the grass. It's just another of the many reasons this place would be a gold mine if I could write fiction. [MORE]

    The Willies
    HOW THE DEVIL GOT MR. JONES

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 10, 10:00 P.M. ET -- The great irony of the Gainesville Koran-burning saga is that at the end, imams were calling the shots and other Islamic clergy were at the microphones on his lawn, calling their host an extremist on Friday. [MORE]

    Momentum
    MOVING MOM

    by Joyce Marcel

    PLANTATION, Fla. -- After 35 years, my mother is leaving her beloved home and moving to a one-bedroom apartment in a luxury independent living facility up the road. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE RETURN OF VOODOO ECONOMICS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., the ranking Republican on the House Budget Committee, is currently the party's darling with his "Roadmap for America's Future," a plan for a major overhaul of federal spending and taxes. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    TODAY IS OPPOSITE DAY, NYAH, NYAH, NYAH!

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Every kid has their favorite day of the year. And because they're greedy little capitalists, their favorites are Christmas and their birthdays. They also have a few least favorite days too. Like the day after Christmas, dentist day, and the first day of school. And the second. And the third. And so on. But when I was a kid, one of my least favorite days of the year was Opposite Day. [MORE]

    Reporting: Koran Burning
    THE FIRE THIS TIME

    by Joe Shea

    GAINESVILLE, Fla., Sept. 8, 2010, 10:59PM ET -- I drove 385 miles for a 10-minute conversation today with the co-pastor of the church where the Rev. Terry Jones plans to build a bonfire of Holy Korans between 6 and 9 PM on Sept. 11, just after the Florida Gators finish playing the South Florida Bulls in an afternoon game at Ben Hill Griffin Stadium a few miles away. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    DOUBLE-DIP? FOR MOST AMERICANS, THE RECESSION'S NEVER ENDED

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Last week, the Commerce Department slashed its estimate of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP), reporting that the GDP rose at only a 1.5 percent annual rate in the second quarter, compared to the 2.4 percent annual rate originally predicted. [MORE]

    Momentum
    GAY MARRIAGE BODY COUNT

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If you've ever wondered why so many Americans become agitated over the idea of gay marriage, you might be interested in an explanation by author Jonathan Rauch. [MORE]

    American Opinion
    A MEXICO LOVED AND LOST

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 4, 2010 -- On my first night in Juarez, I stopped a policeman on foot to ask him for directions. He suggested that I let him drive my car. [MORE]

    Andy Oram Reports
    THE NETWORK NEUTRALITY DEBATE: IT ALL DEPENDS ON WHAT YOU FEAR

    by Andy Oram

    CAMBRIDGE, Mass. -- Was the future of the Internet wrenched onto a new path on Nov. 7, 2005? Bloomberg Businessweek posted an interview that day with Edward Whitacre, Jr., CEO of the telephone company SBC, posing some general questions about his plans in the wake of purchasing AT&T Wireless. When asked what he thought about "Internet upstarts like Google," Whitacre replied with some heat: [MORE]

    American Opinion
    IRAQ REPRISE: AMERICA GETS A PRESIDENT

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Aug. 31, 2010 -- It took 19 months, but as President Obama addressed the American people tonight on the end of the U.S. combat role in Iraq, it was clear to me that the young Illinois Senator had grown into the job a majority of Americans entrusted to him. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    SURSTRÖMMING: SWEDISH DELICACY OR WMD?

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I'll eat just about anything once. There is not much I don't like or won't try. [MORE]

    Constance
    DE GUSTIBUM NON EST DISPUTANDUM

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- For most of us, people, places and things are of interest in one way or another. I'm a people person. I like to learn about a person - where they're from and what molded them, either into the person in front of me or in the pages of a book. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    DANGEROUS IGNORANCE AND BIGOTRY IS LOOSED UPON OUR LAND

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Given the myriad of economic, environmental and geo-political crises we are saddled with, it seems absolutely unbelievable to me that people are arguing about whether a $100 million Sufi Muslim community center should be built near the former site of the World Trade Center towers in New York. [MORE]

    American Opinion
    BECK & CALL

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Aug. 28, 2010 -- Like many Americans, I was startled and transfixed by the enormity of the response to Glenn Back's call to "restore honor" in America. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    McSTUPID LAWSUITS BY McDONALD'S McLAWYERS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- It's understandable: if you own a company, you don't want people to confuse yours with another company that sells a similar product with a similar name. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A BUSHEL FULL

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- August is usually the silly season for news, but this year it seems somehow different; America seems to be drowning in dumb. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IS RUSSIA'S HEAT WAVE WARNING OF A HOTTER EARTH?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's hard to imagine a 100 degree day in Moscow. [MORE]

    AR Endorses
    TIME FOR NEW BLOOD IN FLORIDA

    by AR Staff

    BRADENTON, Fla., Aug. 22, 2010 - The woes of Florida are well known. [MORE]

    American Opinion
    A NEW E.P.A. EDICT IS A THREAT TO FLORIDA

    by Richard Griswold

    DESTIN, Fla. -- Over the past several years, Floridians have seen more than their share of disasters. Hurricanes, recession and an ecological disaster of monumental proportions have dealt severe blows - but the economic devastation of these events pale in comparison to the manmade disaster looming on our horizon. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A HOT PRIMARY

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Last week in this column I studied the Democratic primary candidates for governor and decided, in the end, to support Peter Shumlin. (Which, according to my e-mail, pleased his mother and ticked off Matt Dunne.) [MORE]

    Make My Day
    A DAY AT THE MUSEUM

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Okay, remember kids, this is a museum filled with very expensive items. You absolutely may not touch anything." [MORE]

    American Opinion
    THE FIRE OF RESISTANCE STILL IGNITES ANTI-NUCLEAR ACTIVISTS

    by Eileen Fleming

    KANSAS CITY, Mo., Aug. 17, 2010 -- On Monday morning, Aug. 16, some 14 non-violent peace activists - mostly nuns, priests and other clergy - were arrested for blocking a Caterpillar truck on the site of a proposed WMD Facility in Kansas City, Mo. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    AMERICANS SEEK COMPETENCE, ACTION FROM THEIR GOVERNMENT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Americans have little confidence in the federal government. At the same time, Americans want the federal government to be more effective. [MORE]

    Constance
    WEIGHING IN ON FAT

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Here is a disclaimer right up front: This article is not to defend obesity but, rather, to point out how it is and how it was. [MORE]

    American Opinion
    COUNTING UP THE SAVINGS OF THE 2010 CENSUS

    by George Grandy, Jr.

    ATLANTA, Ga. -- One of my responsibilities as regional director is to make sure that taxpayer money is used responsibly. This week, we put a number to our collective good use of federal dollars: The Census Bureau will return not less than $1.6 billion of our budgeted funds for 2010. This figure represents about 22 percent of the total amount Congress gave us to do the job nationally this year. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    ENGAGED? ENGAGED IN WHAT?

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- A friend of mine told me today was his 22nd anniversary - five years longer than I've been married. It got me to thinking about when my wife and I got engaged. When we did it, it was a complete surprise. [MORE]

    Momentum
    AN EMBARRASSMENT OF RICHES

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Bear with me as I try to reason my way through the embarrassment of riches that is the Democratic gubernatorial primary. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    'NO DRAMA OBAMA' NEEDS A STRONG SECOND ACT

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The Obama Administration is a welcome change from the Bush-Cheney years. Against severe Republican opposition, President Obama has kept campaign promises to reform health care, curb Wall Street excesses, create a federally-funded stimulus program to help bring the nation out of the recession, and to remove American troops from the needless Iraq war, which has already cost Americans more than $740 billion and 4,400 lives. He has also pledged to eliminate the Bush-Cheney tax cuts for the rich, while not raising taxes on the middle- and lower-classes. [MORE]

    Ron Kenner
    KRUGMAN HITS BULL'S EYE ON 'AMERICA GOES DARK'

    by Ron Kenner

    LOS ANGELES, Aug. 9, 2010 -- Paul Krugman's 'America Grows Dark' , an opinion piece in today's New York Times, is brutally on target. It is a telling column, I think, on how America is shutting down, needlessly, and at disastrous cost. [MORE]

    Constance
    FROM GETTYSBURG TO HIROSHIMA TO GROUND ZERO

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- A few days ago American Ambassador to Japan John Roos attended the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Ceremony in Japan. On his second visit to Hiroshima, the first by an American ambassador, he expressed respect for all the victims of World War 11. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE WAR AGAINST SECRETS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Some have argued that there's little that's new about the U.S. war on Afghanistan in last week's document dump by WikiLeaks. These people are wrong. [MORE]

    The Willies
    THE U.S.P.S. NEEDS TO TAKE IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Aug. 5, 2010 -- Forty-seven years ago, driving a '55 Dodge with three kids working with me on a construction site, I hit a tree going 40 miles per hour and nearly killed myself. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THAT LONG LAST MILE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's a simple fact of life that fast and reliable Internet service is indispensable in a country that wants to continue enjoying a high standard of living. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE IMPOSSIBILITY OF CLEANLINESS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- As I get older, I'm more concerned with cleanliness and neatness. (Not the rest of the house, mind you. That's still a free-for-all.) [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IS IT 1994 ALL OVER AGAIN?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The calendar may read 2010, but politically, all I see is 1994. [MORE]

    Constance
    TALK TO THE YOUTH

    BY Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- This year the dog days of August began in late June and persist as I run from one air-conditioned place to another. I pre-cool my car before getting in for the morning's drive but, today, I have the leisure to read every page in Sunday's hefty edition of The New York Times. I'm just not going out of the house while the heat index is 105 F. again. [MORE]

    Momentum
    BRAVE MEN AND POISONED BEER

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt., July 30, 2010 -- One picture may be worth a thousand words, but sometimes 70,000 pages of words can give you a very strong picture. I'm talking about the Afghanistan War Logs that WikiLeaks released on Sunday. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    SAGGY PANTS & CRUSHED CARS: JUSTICE FOR SOME

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- As much as I hate to admit it, a teenager's right to wear his pants below his butt is protected by the First Amendment. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    SHINING THE LIGHT OF THE NEW COLOSSUS INTO ARIZONA

    by Walter Brasch

    PHOENIX, Ariz., July 26, 2010 -- Two things are assured this coming week. One is that Arizona will do its best to put into practice its controversial anti-immigration bill. The other is that a federal district court will rule whether that law is constitutional. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    AUSTERITY FOR WHOM?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- When you hear conservative politicians, Democrat and Republican alike, talk about the need for austerity, the first question to ask is "austerity for whom?" [MORE]

    The Willies
    RACE AND FACE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., July 20, 2010 -- What a sad story the Shirley Sherrod saga has become. [MORE]

    Momentum
    VENTURE SOCIALISM

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Henry Ford understood that his business wouldn't survive unless his workers could buy his product, and so he paid them well. [MORE]

    Reporting: Immigration
    MIGRANTS OPPOSE IMMIGRATION CAP IN THE UK

    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    LONDON, England, July 18, 2010 -- With the soaring popularity of the South Asian food, "masala tikka" and "chapati" have become English words in the United Kingdom. The aroma of Indian food has given a new ambience to the cities and towns of the former colonial power, and helped more than 9,000 Indian and Pakistani restaurants flourish. [MORE]

    Momentum
    BREAD AND CIRCUSES

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The Romans figured that if they provided bread and gladiator matches, people wouldn't notice that their leadership was inept and corrupt. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WHO KILLED THE AMERICAN DREAM? THE REPUBLICAN PARTY DID

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In a recent interview with the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, a newspaper owned by the far-right billionaire Richard Mellon Scaife, House Minority Leader John Boehner - the Ohio Republican with the day-glo orange fake tan who thinks he is going to be the Speaker of the House next year - complained about how Democrats "are snuffing out the America that I grew up in." [MORE]

    Make My Day
    GHOST WRITERS IN THE SKY

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I'm a ghost writer. Other people hire me to write stuff for them, but they get to put their name on it. I've ghost-written blog posts, brochures, press releases, Websites, and half a book. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    LeBRON, THE MEDIA, AND AMERICA'S SOUL

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Millions of Americans had pleaded with basketball superstar LeBron James to leave the Cleveland Cavaliers and come to their city when he became a free agent. Bloggers, media pundits, and reporters of every kind seemed to devote much of their lives to figuring out what team James would be a part of for the 2011 season. [MORE]

    Momentum
    RE-INVENTING VERMONT

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Earlier this week, in my day job as a business reporter, I interviewed the founders of a Vermont solar energy company. I found it interesting that it was only founded in 1998, yet from 2004 to 2007 its revenue grew 463.3 percent. That's a huge jump. Since then, it's doubled its revenue - and the number of its employees - again. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    ESPN SCOOPS ESPN ON THE LEBRON JAMES STORY

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- LeBron James will play for the Miami Heat, although you probably knew that already. [MORE]

    Passings
    BRUCE KELLY: 70 YEARS TOLD IN ONE STORY

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., July 8, 2010 -- They laid Bruce Kelly to rest this week at the age of 70. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    HOW ONE REPORTER BROKE THE SILENCE ON McCHRYSTAL

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I've been in journalism in one form or another for my entire adult life. When I broke into the field, in the afterglow of Watergate, journalism was more than a job. It was a public service where you could make a real difference in peoples' lives. Comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable. Go after the bad guys. Stand up for truth and justice and have fun doing it. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    ONE MAN'S VUVUZELA IS ANOTHER MAN'S CURSE

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Kid, is that what I think it is?" asked Karl the Curmudgeon. [MORE]

    Momentum
    F.I.F.A. FEVER

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I have spent the past few weeks glued to the television set watching World Cup Soccer. It's like eating cashews. I can't stop. [MORE]

    Reporting: Affordable Health Care Act
    WILL PRE-EXISTING COVERAGE BE AFFORDABLE FOR THE POOR? NOBODY KNOWS

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., July 2, 2010 -- "Affordable" health care? Maybe. Maybe not. The government doesn't seem to know. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE CIVILIAN AND THE GENERAL: BEHIND THE McCHRYSTAL INTERVIEW FALLOUT

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- For a few days last week, the harpies of the extreme right assaulted the President of the United States for first considering, and then firing Gen. Stanley McChrystal, commander of allied forces in Afghanistan. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IS THIS AMERICA'S TIME OF RECKONING?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The banks wrecked our economy, and they are still raking in record profits while escaping all accountability for their misdeeds. [MORE]

    Press Release
    10 ALLEGED RUSSIAN SECRET AGENTS ARRESTED, 11th CHARGED IN THE UNITED STATES

    Press Release

    WASHINGTON, June 28, 2010 -- Eight individuals were arrested Sunday for allegedly carrying out long-term, "deep-cover" assignments in the United States on behalf of the Russian Federation, the Justice Department announced today. Two additional defendants were also arrested Sunday for allegedly participating in the same Russian intelligence program within the United States. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A PETRI DISH FOR INSPIRATION

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Since 2002, Vermonters have been told - endlessly - that Vermont is bad for business. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    WHY DON'T AMERICANS LIKE SOCCER?

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Now that the World Cup soccer championship is underway, I'm starting to realize which of my friends like soccer, and which of them are change-hating xenophobes who automatically mistrust anything invented outside the United States. [MORE]

    GENERATION JOBLESS: AMERICANS UNDER 30 AND THE GREAT RECESSION

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Here in Vermont, it is high school graduation season. It is difficult to look at the faces of the young people of the Class of 2010, knowing they are walking out into the worst economy in generations. [MORE]

    Momentum
    DAY 59

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The other evening in Bellows Falls, Vt., Beausoleil sang "The Problem," a song JJ Cale wrote and recorded in 2004, long before the BP oil spill: Have you heard the news that's going 'round here/The man in charge has got to go/Cause he dances 'round the problem, boy/And the problem is the man in charge, you know.... [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WE NEED ILLEGALS - AND IT'S TIME TO ADMIT IT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- "Wanted: Person willing to work long hours from dawn to dark year round. Must be good with large animals and be able to handle heavy machinery. Must be able to do hard, difficult labor under constantly changing conditions in all types of weather, and be available and ready to work every day." [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    R'OIL INDIGNATION

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The British are upset with the United States. That's not too unusual. There was this revolution thing a couple of centuries ago. [MORE]

    Momentum
    IN DEFENSE OF HELEN THOMAS

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In the bad old days, old women were often labeled as witches. [MORE]

    Reporting: Manatee County
    'GREAT DEBATE' FRAMES BROAD IMPACT OF FLORIDA'S AMENDMENT 4

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., June 10, 2010 -- The Great Debate over Florida's "Hometown Democracy" Amendment 4 at the Manatee County Central Library here last night lent a frame to the broad impact of the Nov. 2 initiative to require any changes to a county master plan to be approved by voters. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    RUBBER STAMPS MAKE EDITORS LAZY

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Editor's note: Erik is out of the office this week, so we are firing up the way-back machine, and republishing a column from 1997. However, out of sympathy for our readers, we have edited and improved it. A lot. Like, "it would have been a whole lot easier if he had just written a new one" edited and improved. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    SELF-REGULATION IS A DISASTER FOR AMERICAN BUSINESS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If the old definition of a conservative is "a liberal who's been mugged," is the new definition of a liberal now "a conservative who's had his beachfront property coated in crude oil?" [MORE]

    Passings: Dennis Hopper
    A MAN AND A SUMMER TO REMEMBER

    by Joe Shea

    REYNOLDS PLANTATION, Ga., May 29, 2010 -- Dennis Hopper died today at 74. He was a friend once, and thinking of him last night, and knowing he was sick, I said a prayer for him before I fell asleep. I'm glad I did; he's gone now, and ever after, it will be too late. [MORE]

    Momentum
    SEX AND THE SICKIE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If you want to see the line between sexism and misogyny skid into a puddle of sheer nuttiness, read some of the reviews of the new film "Sex and the City 2." [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    OILY POLITICS LEAD TO ENVIRONMENTAL DISASTER

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa., June 1, 2010 -- Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-La.) had a good idea to slow or stop the Gulf Coast oil spill from reaching shore. Build artificial barrier islands, he told the federal government. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    TEXAS TWISTERS: CONSERVATIVES REWRITE HISTORY FOR ITS SCHOOLCHILDREN

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The late, great Molly Ivins famously called Texas "the laboratory for bad government," and what the Texas State Board of Education did last week reinforces that notion. [MORE]

    Momentum
    OUTRAGE, ANYONE?

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Have you noticed that Tea Baggers and anti-government activists seem to be worrying about all the wrong things? [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE END OF PETROSEXUAL MAN

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Look at your man. Now back to me. Now back at your man, now back at me. Sadly, he isn't me. But if he stopped using hair product by the pound, he could - and stopped wearing his pink shirt - he could - and didn't accessorize - you know what, forget it. Just forget it. [MORE]

    The Willies
    HOW TO FIX THE OIL SPILL

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., May 25, 2010 5:30PM ET -- Have you ever wielded one of those little New Year's Eve noisemakers that roll out and straighten as you blow your heart out at midnight? [MORE]

    Politics 2010
    BUD CHILES, SON OF "WALKIN' LAWTON," TO SEEK DAD'S FORMER JOB AS FLORIDA GOVERNOR

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, May 21, 2010 -- Lawton "Bud" Chiles, 57, the son and namesake of former Fla. governor and U.S. Senator "Walkin' Lawton" Chiles, will announce his own candidacy for the Democratic nomination for governor at an event in Lakeland, Fla., next Saturday, a top elected official close to the Manatee County restaurant owner said Friday evening. [MORE]

    Reporting: Nepal
    13-YEAR-OLD AMERICAN BOY SETS RECORD ON EVEREST

    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    KATHMANDU, Nepal, May 22, 2010 -- A 13-year-old American boy, Jordan Romero, became the youngest person to scale the Mt. Everest, at 29,028 ft. the highest peak in the world. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE FISH PLATE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. - Some time ago, middle-class suburban ladies like my mother held teas. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    ELENA KAGAN: A GOOD, BUT NOT GREAT, PICK FOR THE SUPREME COURT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I can't say that I was surprised that President Barack Obama would nominate Solicitor-General Elena Kagan to succeed Justice John Paul Stevens on the Supreme Court. I can say that I was disappointed that he played so safe by picking Kagan, rather than a more experienced and more liberal nominee. [MORE]

    An AR Exclusive
    CRIST GETS ‘COLD FEET' ON OFFSHORE DRILLING BAN

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., May 18, 2010 -- Gov. Charlie Crist may not be so independent after all. [MORE]

    Momentum
    AN ODE TO THE PILL

    by Joyce Marcel

    PLANTATION, Fla. -- It was 1959. Barry had a greasy pompadour and a big goofy smile. He was my college boyfriend's best friend, and when he and his girlfriend got pregnant, they thought the world was coming to an end. [MORE]

    Politics: 2012
    TAMPA PICKED TO HOST 2012 GOP CONVENTION

    by Joe Shea

    TAMPA, Fla., May 13, 2010 -- The waiting was not quite agony. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    HISTORY IS NO BIRTHDAY PARTY

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Today, I had the awful realization that I'm turning 43 next month. It's awful for a couple of reasons, mostly because I will no longer be 42. [MORE]

    The Willies
    WHAT WOULD I DO WITHOUT THEM?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., May 11, 2010 -- I was a goner. I was in the middle of a very busy intersection when my car ran out of gas and I drifted into the nearest northbound lane of Cortez Rd. at 43rd St. W., trying to start it in neutral to no avail. After a few yards, I stopped. Even with my flashers on, it was only a few second before someone sat on their brakes and screeched to a stop behind, narrowly missing my back bumper. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    AMERICA MUST LEAD IN GREEN ENERGY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- As we watch hundreds of thousands of gallons of oil gush into the Gulf of Mexico after the the explosion and sinking of the BP Deepwater Horizon oil platform, perhaps this is another wake-up call to start moving our economy away from fossil fuels and toward renewable energy. [MORE]

    Momentum
    UNAIDED

    by Joyce Marcel

    PLANTATION, Fla. -- Here in Florida, live-in home health care aides are like mail-order brides. The agency sends you a certified aide complete with his or her own issues. You either get along or fight like cats and dogs. If it's the latter, the agency sends you another aide. And so on. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    BAN ALUMINUM BATS FROM YOUTH BASEBALL

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Baseball has its own soundtrack. The crack! of the bat, the roar of the crowd, the food vendors with their cries of "COLDbeer! Getcha coldbeer HEAH!" [MORE]

    The Willies
    HOW TO GET YOUR MONEY BACK

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, May 7, 2010 -- British Petroleum says the Gulf of Mexico oil spill may ultimately cost them $16 billion. Where does that kind of money come from? Say that BP has a computer genius who is commissioned to hack the stock markets. They figure out how to do it, place buys in street name through 500 different brokers, then make their move. Wham! [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    ANOTHER BATCH OF PRIVATIZATION SNAKE OIL

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform - better known as the deficit commission - began its work this week to try and make Americans so frightened about the federal deficit that they'll support cutting Social Security and Medicare. As with every previous attempt to scare Americans into cutting Social Security and Medicare, it's nonsense. [MORE]

    Panache
    STOP THE WORLD: CHARLIE CRIST WANTS TO GET BACK ON

    by Tony Panaccio

    CLEARWATER, Fla., April 30, 2010 -- I'm blocking out a week right after election night this November, because if Florida Governor Charlie Crist wins the Florida seat in the US Senate in that election, I am hijacking him and taking him to Vegas. He is one helluva gambler! [MORE]

    Momentum
    ART CREEP

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It isn't often noticed because the state line serves as a great divide, but art has been creeping up the Connecticut River Valley. And it's been a very powerful force for good. [MORE]

    The Willies
    TIMES SQUARE BOMB IS A PUZZLER

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., May 2, 2010 -- The strange car bomb found yesterday evening in Times Square by an alert T-shirt vendor and NYPD cavalry officer is the work of an amateur, it appears; but was it also the work of a bomber? [MORE]

    Make My Day
    POWER TO THE TWEEPLE

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Are you on Twitter? Are you a power tweeter, with severe thumb cramps, because you're constantly tweeting to your friends? Or do you think it's the little yellow bird Sylvester the cat kept trying to eat? [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    IN PENNSYLVANIA, DESPERATE WORKERS FIGHT FOR A FAIR CONTRACT

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Art Welch, the in-school suspension supervisor at the Columbia-Montour Area Vocational Technical School - known simply as Vo-Tech - in Bloomsburg, Pa., earns $8-hr., just 75 cents above minimum wage. In the six years he has been at Vo-Tech, he has never had a raise. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    GETTING TO ZERO: IMAGINE A WORLD WITHOUT NUCLEAR WEAPONS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- This month has been, arguably, the most eventful month ever regarding reducing the dangers of nuclear weapons. [MORE]

    Momentum
    UNDERSTANDING SARAH

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- My copy of Vogue arrived in the mail the other day. (What? Like you don't have any secret vices?) It had a Photoshopped picture of Sarah Jessica Parker on the cover. On the very first page, a huge photo of Julia Roberts' teeth leapt out at me. I was bit. [MORE]

    The Willies
    GEE, CAN FLORIDA GET ONE OF THOSE?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, April 27, 2010 -- As the oil seeps from the capsized carcass of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig 52 miles off Venice, La., and the bdies of 11 workers remain undiscovered in the Gulf of Mexico, the incredible stupidity of recent White House approval for drilling off the coast of Florida is dramatized in a way nothing else can. [MORE]

    Constance
    THE SEVENTH SENSE

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- He came out of the men's locker room with such a smile on his face that we all said, "What's so funny, Chris?" [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE RISE OF THE NEW CORPORATION

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Margaret Thatcher once said, "There is no such thing as society: there are individual men and women, and there are families." [MORE]

    Reporting: Panama
    KIWANIS' GIFT OF FUN CHEERS PANAMANIAN KIDS

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    TORTI, Panama, April 19, 2010 -- Smiles and cheers were the order of the day as 35 pupils at the La Tosca Elementary School in Torti received gift bags and kindergarten furniture from 18 members of the Kiwanis Club of Panama. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    NET NEUTRALITY AND THE BATTLE FOR AN OPEN INTERNET

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The Internet has changed so much in the 15 years since The American Reporter first appeared on the scene as the first exclusively online newspaper. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    DIARY OF A DAY OFF

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I just took my first vacation in a couple of years. I've been working like crazy on my new business, and an eight-hour day feels like a day off. This was one of the first times I wasn't going to work at all, and my wife was determined that I wouldn't do any work. [MORE]

    AR's 15th Anniversary
    15 YEARS IN 15 MINUTES

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., April 10, 1995 -- Last year, reporter Billy Cox of the Sarasota Herald Tribune, a solid if struggling local institution and regional New York Times daily newspaper here, spent a total of 17 hours interviewing me for a story on our 15th anniversary. He wrote it and rewrote it, revised it again and again, and was finally persuaded by his editor that his account was "too depressing," and that our situation here was "pathetic." [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A WORLD WITHOUT NUKES BECOMES MORE POSSIBLE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It looks like President Barack Obama is going to follow up his biggest domestic policy achievement - health care reform - with his biggest foreign policy achievement - a new strategic nuclear arms reduction treaty and new U.S. policies regarding the use of nuclear weapons. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE GRUMP IN EARLY SPRING

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I've been known to wax poetic about spring. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE ECONOMY IS IMPROVING FOR WALL STREET, BUT NOT MAIN STREET

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In March of last year, the U.S. stock market was at the lowest point of the current recession. Since then, the Standard & Poor's 500 index has risen nearly 70 percent. Housing prices around the country have stabilized. Commodity prices have begun to rise again. Economic growth, as measured by the Gross Domestic Product, rose at double the rate that economists predicted. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    GIVE ME LIBERTY OR GIVE ME GOOGLE

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    PANAMA CITY, PANAMA, April 1, 2010 -- Editor's Note: Search engine company Google, after a long period of negotiation, last week ended censorship of Websites sought by Chinese citizens on the mainland. [MORE]

    Momentum
    SOMEONE TO HAVE YOUR BACK

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt -- The so-called "Curse of the Oscars" has very strong legs. At Google you'll find 2,660,000 possible sites to read about it in just 0.26 seconds. [MORE]

    The Willies
    HOW TO SAVE OUR ECONOMY

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- There is one, and only one, answer to America's burgeoning national debt, now in the many trillions of dollars and seemingly impossible to repay. There is a way - and also a means - that can be summed up in two words. The first is prosperity. [MORE]

    Reporting: London
    PAKISTANIS IN BRITAIN SEEK A BRIDGE ACROSS CULTURES

    by Chiranjibi Paudyal

    LONDON, April 3, 2010 -- Islamic extremists have waged their propaganda war against the United States and its coalition partners by saying the coalition's presence in Afghanistan and Iraq is an attack on Islam. By now, thousands of people have lost their lives and billions of dollars have been spent on these conflicts, but they don't seem likely to end in the immediate future despite efforts from many quarters. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    GOP GAMBLED ON THE TEA PARTY, AND LOST

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's a sign of how totally insane this nation has become when the passage of a health care bill that has so many conservative elements within it is labeled as socialist. [MORE]

    The Willies
    EVEN POPES ARE FALLIBLE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- It seems to me I'm always defensive when the Catholic Church is implicated in another sex scandal. Our menu of links to newspaper and online headlines around the world often seem to focus quickly on wrongdoing by the Israeli government but rarely on the reprehensible conduct of my fellow Catholics in their roles as priests and religious. Why is that? [MORE]

    Momentum
    A YIDDISH MAMA IN VERMONT

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Author Deborah Lee Luskin has chutzpah. [MORE]

    Opinion
    DON'T MEXICANS BLEED LIKE WE DO?

    by Patrick Osio

    LOS ANGELES, March 26, 2010 -- Are Mexican citizens' deaths any less deserving of sadness and outrage? [MORE]

    Make My Day
    WHY KARL THE CURMUDGEON IS UPSET

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "I'm getting tired of all the sloppy grammar people use these days," lamented Karl, my friend and part-time curmudgeon. [MORE]

    Editorial
    BIDEN FLAP HAS FAR-REACHING FALLOUT

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., March 17, 2010 -- The recent diplomatic flap over the Israeli announcement of construction of 1,600 Jewish housing units in disputed East Jerusalem has focused attention on the deteriorating relationship between that country and the United States. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    SHUT UP BACK THERE: MOVIE ETIQUETTE TIPS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I rarely go to movies anymore. My wife and I go about once a year, and take the kids a second time, but that's about it. [MORE]

    Momentum
    CARGO CULT

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Every February, one of the last South Pacific islands to host a cargo cult puts on a major festival. Reading about this year's party made me think of cargo cults in general, and one in particular that I joined for a little while. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    HOW TO SAVE AMERICAN JOURNALISM

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I read "The Death and Life of American Journalism" by media professor and activist Robert W. McChesney and John Nichols, the Washington correspondent for The Nation, with great interest, and not just because I've been a professional journalist in one form or another for nearly 30 years. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE OUTRAGE AND THE JOY: WOMEN IN FILM

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- March is Woman's History Month - as though we don't have any history during the other eleven months - and it was somehow fitting that Kathryn Bigelow won the Academy Award for best director and best film at last Sunday's Oscars. That's the first Oscar given to a woman for directing, even though women - including Bigelow - have been directing films for years. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE POLITICS OF FEAR AND SMEAR

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's a long-standing principle in the American justice system that even the most unpopular defendants are given adequate legal representation and that the rule of law is followed without exception. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    INDIANA STUDENT SUSPENDED FOR JUST SAYING NO

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I thought we were safe here in Indiana. I thought we didn't do Zero Tolerance. Turns out the stupidity and harm of this blinded-to-logic-and-reason way of thinking has hit the Hoosier state. [MORE]

    Momentum
    DEAR SEN. DOYLE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Town Meeting Day has come and gone in Vermont, and I hope everyone filled out their Doyle Poll. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    PATRIOT ACT DEMANDED REPEAL, NOT RENEWAL

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- After a bit more of a year of President Barack Obama's first term, we have been treated to one disappointment after another. [MORE]

    Constance
    EXPERIENCE IS THE BEST TEACHER

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- That title just brought on a collective groan among readers, "Well, duh," since most of us have had "live and learn" moments in our lives: Live and learn; love and learn, lock keys in the car and learn, put your red sock with the white in the washing machine, and learn. We've experienced and we've learned. [MORE]

    The Willies
    BEFORE YOU ORDER FROM DELL, BE PREPARED FOR FRUSTRATION

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, March 6, 2010 -- My 10-year-old Sony computer, once one of the best available, has crashed again, and with help from my brother Pat, I'm getting a new one. Unfortunately, I chose to get it from Dell to help out an American company with a so-so reputation for quality. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    IT'S SNOW NEWS OR NO NEWS

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Up to four feet of snow hit the mid-Atlantic and New England states over the past three weeks, bringing record snowfalls, school closures, power outages and more. Around here, it was one of the most memorable winters in anyone's memory. [MORE]

    Momentum
    FROM OUR FAMILY TO YOUR FAMILY

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Hasn't feminism taken some weird twists and turns since the Second Wave splashed over the U.S. back in the 1970s? [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    OBAMA NEEDS A PRIMARY CHALLENGER IN 2012

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- President Barack Obama came into office with a reputation for being a sharp and canny politician. So why does he keep alienating the people who helped get him elected president in 2008? [MORE]

    American Opinion
    FAMILY GUY 1, PALIN 0

    by Tony Panaccio

    HOLLYWOOD -- If you're a reporter, don't ask Sarah Palin any questions. She ain't answering. [MORE]

    Momentum
    FLYING WITHOUT FEATHERS

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Mankind has always wanted to fly, and not by being X-rayed at an airport and then scrunched into a tiny seat three across with a change of planes in Atlanta. That's the kind of flying that inspired Orson Welles to say, "There are only two emotions in a plane: boredom and terror." [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WE CAN'T BE A SUPERPOWER ON BORROWED MONEY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's hard to believe, but according to the Project on Defense Alternatives, the Defense Department has been given about $7.2 trillion since 1998, when the post-Cold War decline in defense spending ended. This includes President Obama's proposed total military budget for fiscal year 2011 of more than $1 trillion - which represents the biggest share of the federal budget since World War II. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    WHEN WILL SARAH PALIN DISCOVER THE CONSTITUTION?

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Sarah Palin stood before an audience of 600 at the first Tea Party convention and in her twinkly home-spun rhetoric declared we don't need a professor of law but a commander-in-chief. As expected, she received roaring applause. And, as expected, she was wrong. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE 2010 WINTER SWISH-WHACK-TAKE-THAT! AWARDS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I created the Swish-Whack awards during the 2004 Athens Olympics, to shine some light on the sport of fencing, after America's Mariel Zagunis, 19, won America's first fencing gold medal in 100 years. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    FOX NEWS NATION AND THE FUTURE OF DEMOCRACY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Recently, news stories proclaimed that the Fox News Channel was the most trusted television news source in the country. The stories were referring to a poll done by North Carolina-based Public Policy Polling, which asked Americans whether they trusted each of the country's major television news operations. [MORE]

    Momentum
    TOO COOL TO RULE?

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Lester Young is cool. Miles Davis is cool. Jack Kerouac is cool. President Barack Obama is cool. [MORE]

    Music
    A NIGHT WITH BLUES LEGEND MOJO COLLINS

    by Eric J. Wallace

         KILL DEVIL HILLS, N.C. --  Last night, legendary blues guitarist Mojo Collins graced the stage of the Outer Banks Brewing Station.  The word "grace" cannot be overemphasized.   [MORE]

    Make My Day
    A 2010 WINTER OLYMPICS PREVIEW

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- As I write this, we're just 24 hours away from the opening ceremonies of the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics. I love the Winter Olympics. You can keep your track and field, your gymnastics, your women's softball. Give me downhill skiing, the bobsled, and curling. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    HOWARD ZINN EXPANDED OUR VIEW OF HISTORY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- "Who controls the past controls the future," George Orwell once wrote. "Who controls the present controls the past." [MORE]

    Momentum
    NUCLEAR FOLLIES

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- When President Barack Obama said, during his State of the Union speech, "But to create more of these clean energy jobs... that means building a new generation of safe, clean nuclear power plants in this country," I literally howled. How could an ostensibly intelligent man be so wrong, wrong, wrong? [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE RELUCTANT EVOLUTION OF A COMPUTER GEEK

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I've been amazed at how far computers have come from the first days I used one. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE SUPREMES KEEPS ALIVE THE FICTION OF CORPORATE PERSONHOOD

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's easy to make the case that there is nothing that has done more to damage the proper functioning of our democracy than the system of legalized bribery and graft that now dominates the American political process. [MORE]

    Momentum
    KATE McGARRIGLE: A SOUND FROM ANOTHER TIME

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- No matter where it's performed, on the stage of Carnegie Hall or around a wood-burning stove, folk music is redolent of hearth and family. Maybe it's because so many folk songs are rooted in character and place. Maybe it's because a good tune can turn a local story into a legend. Maybe it's because a lot of people can play and sing together -- the very opposite of performance. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    MASSACHUSETTS DEMOCRATS HAD A LOUSY CANDIDATE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In 1972, Massachusetts was the only state that went for George McGovern over Richard Nixon for president. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A WORLD OF HURT

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- There are too many traumatized people in the world right now, and there aren't enough therapists to go around. [MORE]

    Reporting: Appamattox
    DEATH ON A DRIVE IN THE COUNTRY

    by Eric J. Wallace

    APPOMATTOX, Va. -- You drive over the long sloping hills of State Highway 460, watching the farms and thick trees slip over the horizon, how they rise and rise until you begin to think they are an endless procession speeding past in an infinite blur.  In the distance, there is the dark sapphire blue pressing into the clouds, the haunting shadow violet limning the worn undulations of water-carved phosphorescent rivulets trickling down the ancient slopes.   [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE SAD CRASH LANDING OF AIR AMERICA

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Air America, the liberal radio network, went down in flames on Jan. 21, when it filed for bankruptcy. It wasn't because of air-to-air combat with conservative talk shows and bloggers. It wasn't because of the Recession, although reduced advertising revenue, a reality of all media, also affected Air America. It wasn't even demographics, even though older, marginalized conservatives tend to listen to radio more than do younger liberal professionals. And media history was only part of the problem. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE DECKERS FAMILY, INC., 2010 ANNUAL REPORT

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Since it's been a year since my last annual report, in keeping with our family by-laws, I want to evaluate our progress over the last 12 months. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WHY REWARD FAT CAT BANKERS? MOVE YOUR MONEY!

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Only in America can the people who drove the global economy off a cliff and pushed tens of millions of people into poverty and joblessness get lavishly rewarded for doing so. [MORE]

    Momentum
    FOR REAL

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Cross-cultural experiences come when you least expect them. [MORE]

    Constance
    POOR HARRY

    By Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Today would be Carroll O'Connor's birthday. In the person of Archie Bunker, starring in "All in the Family," a sitcom in the 70s, he personified an American bigot. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE RIGHT AND WRONG WAY TO DEAL WITH TERRORISM

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- There is much about the case of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, the 23-year-old Nigerian accused of attempting to explode a plastic device aboard a flight from Amsterdam to Detroit on Christmas Day, that doesn't add up. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE NEW YEAR'S EVE DATE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In 2002, I went to Florida for the auditions for one of my mother's musical theater productions. Here is part of what I wrote afterwards: "And then there was Red Gershon, 80, handsome, white-haired, a former mailman who lives to dance with my mother. He had such serious back problems that it was widely understood he couldn't be in the show. But only a few days after major back surgery, Red came to rehearsal 'just to watch.'" [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    IN A PENNSYLVANIA TOWN, A COLD SHOULDER FOR THE FREEZING HOMELESS

    by Walter Brasch

    SUGAR NOTCH, Pa. -- A regional advocate for the rights of the homeless says actions by Sugar Notch, Pa., officials to deny shelter to homeless men may be based upon fear and a lack of knowledge. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    HELP! HELP! I'M REALLY CHILLY!

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- The television weather people are turning us into sissies. They're doing everything they can to force us all into our homes, where we'll be found dead after the Spring thaw, huddled together in frozen heaps. [MORE]

    American Opinion
    A PLEA TO THE MODERN READER

    by Eric J. Wallace

    KILL DEVIL HILLS, N.C. -- Recently. as a requirement for a literature symposium. I was forced to read a number of "great" late 19th Century short stories, most of which were far from great, much less enjoyable. In general. they were a formulaic brand of commercial slop that academics consider literature by virtue of the conditions which bred the writing, i.e., a matter of "social commentary." [MORE]

    The Willies
    WHAT'S WITH ALL THESE UFO VIDEOS?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Jan. 4, 2009 -- Readers who see three YouTube videos on our front page this past week must be curious. Has The Americzan Reporter become tabloid? Is the editor out of his mind? [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    AFTER A YEAR IN OFFICE, OBAMA HAS YET TAKE POLITICAL RISKS FOR CHANGE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Has President Obama's first year in office been a failure? There are plenty of people arguing about that one. But I'd say there's one thing he has definitely failed at: articulating a vision of the future and working hard to make it happen. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE RICH GET RICHER

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The events of Sept. 11, 2001, of course, indelibly mark the decade that is ending tonight. But when you step back and look at America from a distance, you will see that the years 2000-2009 are more defined by the growth of the largest disparity in wealth since the Gilded Age, which lasted from 1870 to 1900. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    LSSU'S LIST OF BANNED WORDS FOR 2010

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- It's the end of the year, which means word nerds and writer-types around the country are rejoicing: the Lake Superior State University has released their 35th annual List of Words Banished from the Queen's English for Mis-use, Over-use, and General Uselessness. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    'DOUBT INDUSTRY' MUDDIES THE CLIMATE CHANGE DEBATE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- There were many reasons why the United Nations climate conference in Copenhagen ended without a binding agreement to limit greenhouse gas emissions. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE 'COURAGE' OF MICHAEL VICK

    by Walter Brasch and Rosemary Brasch

    PHILADELPHIA, Pa., Dec. 30, 2009 -- The Philadelphia Eagles honored reserve quarterback and admitted dog-killer Michael Vick with an award for courage. Yes, you read that right. "Michael Vick" and "courage" are in the same sentence, now etched in brass. [MORE]

    2010
    A SONNET FOR THE NEW YEAR

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- I wrote this poem, which is flawed as a sonnet (as were some of Shakespeare's), at a deli and coffee shop in Santa Monica, Calif., on New Year's Eve 1982. The deli is gone now, and the poem, too, has changed in several ways over the years - a word here, and years later, a word there - and I probably never read it the same way twice. Worst of all, a phrase is missing from the recorded version. I'm not sure how that happened. The version below is more or less complete. [MORE]

    The Willies
    DON'T HOLIDAY ME!

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 24, 2009 -- Yesterday, without warning, my right leg suddenly became paralyzed five times for about two minutes each time. It's already happened twice today. So don't holiday me. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    PRO-WAR SPEECH BETRAYED THE SPIRIT OF THE NOBEL PEACE PRIZE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Erwin Knoll, the late publisher of The Progressive, said that in 1991, as the United States went to war against Iraq, "There is no such thing as a just war - never was, never will be." [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    GREED, CORRUPTION, AND HATE PLAY BIG IN N.E. PENNSYLVANIA

    by Walter Brasch

    SHENANDOAH, Pa. -- Dick Wolf, who created "Law & Order" and its two successful spin-offs, "Law & Order: SVU" and "Law & Order: Criminal Intent," should probably consider establishing a branch office in Pennsylvania. [MORE]

    Momentum
    WILD HORSES

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It was 6 a.m. here in south Florida and the sky was still a midnight blue when Lee pulled up in her truck. She was playing Susan Boyle's "Wild Horses" on the car stereo and it was lovely. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    10 PHRASES TO ELIMINATE FROM BUSINESS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- As a writer, I don't like trite phrases, marketing jargon, or clichés. So I was pleased to see a piece by Frances Cole Jones on CNN.com talking about her 10 worst business sayings. [MORE]

    Ex Libris
    NAPIER'S 'THE FURIES' STARTS FAST, ENDS WELL

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec, 23, 2009 -- I like thrillers when they have a great pace and clever plotting, and that's not so common as it once seemed. Bill Napier's books, and especially his last, "The Lure," leapt out at me from the bookstands when I didn't know his name. In fact, it was only after glancing through the frontispiece the other day that I noticed I'd already read two of his books. [MORE]

    Editorial
    JOIN THE BOYCOTT AGAINST TIGER WOODS' EX-SPONSORS

    American Reporter Staff

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- Is it the business of the media or the public to look into the private lives of celebrities? We say, short of heinous crimes, no! And while we think, based on our own religious heritage, that infidelity is wrong, we think it is God's work, not ours, to judge. [MORE]

    Momentum
    IS EVERYBODY HAPPY?

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Women's happiness is once again in the news. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    TIGER, TIGER, BURNING BRIGHT: LESSONS FROM CARNER AND HOGAN

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Dec. 13, 2009 -- Tiger Woods is in the enviable position of looking trouble in the eye, and dealing with it by quitting his job. "After much soul searching I have decided to take an indefinite break from professional golf," Tiger tells us. [MORE]

    MILO MINDERBINDER IS ALIVE AND WELL AND WORKING IN AFGHANISTAN

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- There's a reason why Afghanistan is known as the graveyard of empires. Afghans are not just tenacious fighters, they are equally tenacious when it comes to corruption and playing every possible angle for fun and profit. [MORE]

    Reporting: Science
    EINSTEIN, NEWTON, AND THE NATURE OF THE UNIVERSE: A BOOMERANG BOUNCE

    by Eric J. Wallace

    KILL DEVIL HILLS, N.C., Dec. 12, 2009 -- Isaac Newton. Albert Einstein. Iconic names nearly synonymous with the word "science" itself. Petr HoYava. Who? [MORE]

    Reporting: Copenhagen Summit
    BIG INSURERS FEEL THE HEAT OVER CLIMATE CHANGE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 7. 2009 - Support for an accord on climate change in Copenhagen has come from a surprising place: Germany's mammoth re-insurer, Munich Re, which says huge losses due to climate change demand that "fundamental framework conditions should be established" iat the Copenhagen Climate Change Summit, whicxh opened today. "We cannot afford a delay at the expense of future generations," the company said in an official statement. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    HOW I GET MOST OF MY COLUMN IDEAS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "I need a topic to write about," said Karl the Curmudgeon, plonking his beer on the bar, and picking up a pen. He held it over a small notebook, ready to write down whatever I said. [MORE]

    Opinion
    COPENHAGEN TALKS ARE NOT JUST ABOUT ENERGY

    by John Seager

    WASHINGTON, Dec. 5, 2009 -- As world leaders convene the Copenhagen climate talks, discussion has focused on the need for wealthy countries to reduce emissions. Far less attention has been paid to the inevitable reality that emissions in the poorest parts of the world need to increase. And there has been scant recognition of the role played by rapid population growth in rising emissions worldwide. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE NO-NEWS, NO-COLUMN COLUMN

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- I don't have a column this week. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    A CHILL IN THE MARKETS MAY PRECEDE RECOVERY

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Dec. 4, 2009 -- Happy Holidays to all from Angel Fire, N.M., where it is -15°F. at this writing. With a wind chill of -25°F., we're one degree off the coldest temperature ever recorded on this date in New Mexico. But the morning job figures provide a spark, if not a fire, to warm up my seldom-used strategist's seat much faster than climate change will. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    OBAMA'S WAR PLAN FOR AFGHANISTAN

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Most nations view war as a last resort, a serious act used only when absolutely necessary. [MORE]

    Momentum
    LONG DISTANCE CARE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- She seemed so frail. [MORE]

    Ex Libris
    IT'S NO MASTERPIECE, BUT 'AVERTON' TELLS AN IMPORTANT STORY

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 5, 2009 -- Remember Tim McVeigh, the former soldier who teamed up with a military buddy and bombed the Albert J. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City on April 19, 1995, killing 163 people? It happened just nine days after The American Reporter began publication, and it remains unforgettable. [MORE]

    Music Review
    THE FRONT PORCH COUNTRY BAND SHINES ON "HERE WE GO AGAIN"

    by Eric J. Wallace

    KILL DEVIL HILLS, N.C., Dec. 5, 2009 -- After forming in 2001, members of The Front Porch Country Band found themselves suddenly catapulted into the international spotlight after gleaning well over a million plays from the free-download Website MP3.com. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    CANADIAN MAN SUES OVER HIS SERVICE 'DOG'

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Believe it or not, there's a controversy brewing within the blindness community about service dogs (also called Leader Dogs, Guide Dogs, Seeing Eye Dogs, and Pilot Dogs - named after the school where they're trained). One organization, the American Council of the Blind, loves them. They believe service dogs are a valuable help to people who are blind or visually impaired. [MORE]

    The Willies
    THE WAR AGAINST THE CALIPHATE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Nov. 30, 2009 -- The President has already met with his top military and civilian defense advisors and has ordered a surge in U.S. troop deployment in Afghanistan, so what I have to say to him is too late to make much difference. After months of deliberation, another 30,000 troops are on their way to a nation that in the space of a decade has become a fractured pawn in the game that Islamic extremists play. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    DARWIN AND THE SCIENTIFIC REVOLUTION HE MADE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- One hundred and fifty years ago this week, the age of modern science began. [MORE]

    Film Reviews
    '2012,' 'BLIND SIDE,' 'THE ROAD,' ALL RESONATE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 4, 2009 -- The one remarkable film of 2009? "The Road,' starring Viggo Mortensen with a cameo by Robert Duvall, is based on Cormac McCarthy's National Book Award winner of the same name and is, if possible, even more unrelievedly grim than the novel. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE GIFT OF GRATITUDE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. - Thanksgiving. Lists. Things to be grateful for. Whatever. [MORE]

    Ex Libris
    'THE EXTINCTION GENE' IS MORE THAN WORTH A READ

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 2, 2009 -- One of the great things about the Internet is that it's encouraged thousands of new writers to self-publish their books, and hundreds of publishers to offer new books by them online and in print. One of these emerging authors is Robert Gross, whose book "The Extinction Gene," (iUniverse, 2009) is not only a first-class thriller and a natural for the screen, but short and punchy instead of long-winded, as so many new books are. [MORE]

    Reporting: The Outer Banks
    ONCE DISMISSED, 'ATLANTIC ASSAULT' TOOK A HEAVY TOLL

    by Eric J. Wallace

    KILL DEVIL HILLS, N.C. -- Driving down Hwy. 12 - the beach road here - sand and debris were heaped in tall piles along both shoulders. In many places deep standing water forced the traffic to a near halt. It was the unexpected aftermath of a Nov. 18 "no-name" storm with hurricane-like winds that many storm-weary locals had dismissed as just another breeze. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WORLD LEADERS FIDDLE WHILE THE PLANET BURNS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- For anyone hoping that definitive emissions limits and other aggressive measures to curb rising global temperatures will come out of next month's United Nations climate summit in Copenhagen, think again. [MORE]

    Momentum
    WHERE'S THE PIETA?

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The loveliest part of writing this column is the unexpected response I sometimes get from readers. A few weeks ago, for example, a woman who declined to give her name called with an odd question. Wasn't I the one who had written about having a job at the 1964 New York World's Fair? Well, yes, I was. [MORE]

    American Traveler
    FOR A HUNGRY JOURNALIST, A FABULOUS FEAST UNFOLDS AT KONA GRILL

    by Joe Shea

    TAMPA, Fla., Nov. 24, 2009 -- The greatest achievement of Kona Grill, the stunning new 7,900-foot restaurant beside the upscale International Plaza on Boy Scout Blvd. here - a few blocks from the 2009 Super Bowl XLIII venue, Raymond James Stadium - is that it exists at all in an economy tighter than a snare drum and a city as badly battered by the recession as any in America. [MORE]

    Reporting: Outer Banks
    OUTER BANKS AWAITED THE 'NO-NAME' STORM WITH YAWNS

    by Eric J. Wallace

    KILL DEVIL HILLS, N.C., Nov. 18, 2009 -- You saw it on the news. A region on the stormy shoulder of the Atlantic seaboard known as the Outer Banks was bracing desperately for a storm that was about to ram a nameless pile-driver into its quaint and pretty towns. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    RUSH, TALK RADIO'S 'TRUTH DETECTOR,' BLOWS A FUSE AGAIN

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- It wasn't unusual that Rush Limbaugh went ballistic on his show, Nov. 13. He does that several times a day. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE PREVALENCE AND RELEVANCE OF PORN

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Let's talk about porn. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IT'S TIME TO PLAY HARDBALL ON HEALTH REFORM

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The good news? For the first time since Medicare was enacted in 1965, one chamber of Congress has passed health care reform. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    LEGACIES, CELEBRITIES, AND MEDIA SKANKS

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa -- NBC news correspondent Jenna Bush Hager had a news exclusive. And, like news exclusives in the Era of Infotainment, this one was broadcast by the entertainment division. Specifically, Jenna Bush interviewed her mother, Laura Bush, on 38th episode of "The Jay Leno Show." [MORE]

    Market Mover
    DELTA'S WORLD SERIES BY WiFi RATES A 'WOW!'

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M. -- I have no idea where this fits in the scheme of "new media" or online news, but in my brief life I don't think 20 or 30 years ago I could have imagined this. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    WHAT THE BLEEP IS WRONG WITH MEEP?

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I hate it when people bleep themselves. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    MEMO TO DEMS: IGNORE THE BASE AND YOU'LL LOSE ELECTIONS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- For political junkies, the off-year elections held around the nation on Tuesday were pretty thin gruel. There weren't many surprises. [MORE]

    The Willies
    A RICH DESSERT FOR OBAMA'S HEAPING PLATE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Nov. 9. 2009 -- When you think about all the issues President Barack Obama has piled on his plate, it's enough to give you the willies. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    JUSTICE IS NOT ONLY BLIND BUT ALSO NOT VERY SMART

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I'm a big supporter of civil rights and personal liberties. In this country, we're all guaranteed certain inalienable rights, and are allowed certain dignities, even when facing criminal charges. [MORE]

    Momentum
    BRATTLEBORO'S PETER PAN OF ART

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I first met Mara Williams 20 years ago, when she came from New York City to be the director of the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    FOX NEWS AND THE TRIUMPH OF FATHEADS OVER FACT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If you were President Obama, why would you bother to give the time of day to an organization dedicated not just to the destruction of his presidency, but to liberalism in general? [MORE]

    Weekend Report
    MY APOLOGY TO DRUG ADDICTS

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    NEW YORK, Oct. 31, 2009 -- Full disclosure requires the author to reveal he is currently whacked out on drugs. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE CHURCH OF LEONARD COHEN

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- As Leonard Cohen says in "Anthem," Ring the bells that still can ring/Forget your perfect offering/There is a crack, a crack in everything/That's how the light gets in. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    TIMID, PASSIVE REPORTERS PRODUCE TIMID, PASSIVE JOURNALISM

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- There are many reasons why newspapers are in trouble. [MORE]

    Momentum
    REALITY BITES

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If you're like me, at some point in the past few years you've had the conversation about why there are so many dead bodies - fake dead bodies - on television. [MORE]

    Constance
    DECK YOURSELVES IN DAD'S OLD TROUSERS

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- On Thanksgiving, we begged. On Hallowe'en, we bobbed - for apples, that is. That was how it all began and from that time until now, traditions and meanings have changed. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    INSIDE THE HEALTH CARE NIGHTMARE

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BROOKLYN, N.Y., Oct. 24, 2009 -- I wonder if a national health plan bordering on socialism would be a slam dunk if liberal Democrats like the late Ted Kennedy had "spun" the issue so that departed Senate icons such as Jesse Helms and Strom Thurmond, hard-core Carolina conservatives, could make it a "populist" cause. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    SCARY ISN'T A KID IN A HALLOWE'EN COSTUME

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa.-- One of the joys of Hallowe'en is to dress in scary costumes and pretend to frighten others, who pretend to be frightened. But with less than two weeks until an evening of trick-or-treating, it's possible there won't be anything scarier than what's already happened in the country. [MORE]

    American Essay
    EPIDEMIC OF PRISONER RECIDIVISM HAS A CURE

    by David Koch

    COLUMBUS, Ohio -- When ex-cons violate parole and are sent back to prison on a new felony conviction, as six out of 10 will be, their average stay in jail is from three to six years. The cost to jail them is $94,834 per "recidivist," as prison systems call them. The total incarceration cost for these recidivists alone is between $3 and $7 billion a year - just for the taxpayers of Ohio! [MORE]

    Free Press
    L.A. PRESS CLUB CONDEMNS SHERIFF ON SEIZURE OF TMZ HEAD'S HOME PHONE RECORDS

    American Reporter Staff

    HOLLYWOOD. -- The board of directors of the Los Angeles Press Club has condemned the actions of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department in violating a reporter's right under state law to maintain confidential sources. [MORE]

    The Willies
    AMERICAN STAGE BRINGS KEROUAC BACK TO LIFE IN McELROY'S 'END OF THE ROAD'

    by Joe Shea

    ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- If God was going to bring Jack Kerouac back to life, perhaps for Hallowe'en, there couldn't be a better place than St. Petersburg, where he died at 47 in an alcoholic stupor, outlived as all his siblings were by his mother, Gabrielle, the fierce "Ma Mère." [MORE]

    Momentum
    IN OCTOBER

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The wind came racing down the mountain last week and whipped the golden and ochre leaves into the air like snow. They fell for hours, swirling around my head and filling the sky. Rapt with wonder, I stood in the center of the dirt road and let them fall around me. I thought I had never seen anything more beautiful. As Robert Frost wrote in his poem "October," the wind enchanted the land with amethyst. [MORE]

    The Willies
    FROM THE SLASHER HIMSELF, A FEW WORDS ABOUT VIOLENCE

    by Joe Shea

    SARASOTA, Fla., Oct. 11, 2009 -- I found a three-day old email a few hours after Mass tonight from Rochelle Herman, a lovely publicist here on Florida's Gulf Coast, about an event that was already in progress at a huge home on Longboat Key. It's owned by Lorraine and Larry Ziff, an insurance executive and philanthropist who is helping a Sarasota-based producer named Beau Burton of Florida Films LLC on a couple of projects. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    DO CONSERVATIVES HATE OBAMA MORE THAN THEY LOVE AMERICA?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In the past couple of weeks, the pettiness - bordering on anti-Americanism - of the right-wingers has been a sight to behold. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    THE OIL AND GAS MONSTER THAT ATE AMERICA

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    NEW YORK, Oct. 16, 2009 -- In the conspiratorial world it goes something like this: "the largest oil and gas reserves in the world are in - pick a state, usually North Dakota, Montana, Alaska - "but the devious" - (pick one or more) Arabs, automakers, politicians, environmentalists - "are conspiring with the news media to bury the news." [MORE]

    American Opinion
    GROWING CLOUT OF INDEPENDENTS IS A GOP NIGHTMARE

    by Jackie Salit

    NEW YORK, N.Y., Oct. 13, 2009 -- When we finally get far enough down the road on health care reform, it will become clear that a driving force in the intensity of the fight was a heart attack. Not the medical kind. The political kind. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    NEOCONS ARE BACK, AND OBAMA SHOULD IGNORE THEIR 'ADVICE'

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Remember The Project for a New Century? [MORE]

    One Man's Opinion
    AMERICA NEEDS 'MOORE' DEMOCRACY, FEWER CLICHÉS

    by James J. Murtagh

    LOS ANGELES -- Michael Moore has a knack for juxtaposing key moments in history. His new film starts with the fall of Rome, intercut with the collapse of American industry. [MORE]

    GOODBYE, GOURMET

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Is it wrong to be sad about the closing of Gourmet Magazine when many Americans are having a hard time putting food on the table? Why should we care about recipes featuring truffles and pheasant when people are eating fast food because its cheap and filling and they're hungry? [MORE]

    Make My Day
    HONEY, IT'S OVER. BURMA SHAVE!

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- It's been the talk of the town around Bilgola, New South Wales, Australia. A series of romantic signs from some unnamed bloke to his girlfriend Jennifer takes a nasty turn just 40 percent of the way through the message, like some sort of emotionally-sadistic versdion of the ancient Burma Shave campaign. Five signs along the Barrenjoey Road that start out promising a lifetime of happiness end in embarrassment. [MORE]

    Momentum
    MECHANICAL DIFFICULTY

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Remember when people dressed up to fly? [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    PETER GALBRAITH PAYS THE PRICE FOR TELLING THE TRUTH ABOUT AFGHAN ELECTIONS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It seems pretty clear that the Aug. 20 presidential election in Afghanistan was not on the level. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    RACE HATRED RUNS RAMPANT IN POLITICS THESE DAYS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It might have been too much to hope for, but wasn't the election of President Barack Obama supposed to mark a watershed in America? Wasn't it supposed to be another important step toward a post-racial America, where old hatreds would be consigned to the dustbin of history? [MORE]

    The Willies
    TV LACKS THE HUMAN TOUCH

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 30, 2009 -- Just follow along with me as I attempt to send a note to the author of a story on the New York Times Website. I want to contact Julie Bosman, the author of a story on their homepage about one of the winners in the race for public advocate (an elective office post I didn't even know existed). [MORE]

    American Poetry
    A BRIEF SOJOURN IN POETRY HEAVEN

    by T.S. Kerrrigan

    LOS ANGELES -- When I was a student at the University of California at Berkeley, which now seems a century ago, I had the ambitious idea of reading through all the volumes of the Loeb Library.   [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    A LOT OF 'SORRY, BUTS'

    by Walter and Rosemary Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Within two weeks in September, Americans were cluster-bombed by hate speech and a shock wave of incivility. From politics to music and sports, with the mass media more than willing to devote thousands of column inches and hours of air time to salacious reporting, those shock waves eventually degenerated into mere ripples that have become commonly accepted. [MORE]

    Momentum
    RIDING THE WILD BULL OF HEALTH CARE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- When the phone rings at 11:30 at night, you know it's not good. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    MY BABY IS GROWING UP (DESPITE MY BEST EFFORTS)

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Earlier this week, my wife sent me the text message from Hell, the text message every father dreads getting. The words no father of a daughter wants to hear or read. [MORE]

    The Willies
    WHERE THE ROAD GOES DARK

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 24, 2009 -- I had become a Redbox customer. After several years of off-and-on patronage of Blockbuster, the world's largest video rental company, I discovered the simplicity of Redbox at Wal-Mart. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE RECESSION'S OVER? DON'T BELIEVE IT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Some economists are talking like the current recession - the worst since the 1930s - is over. [MORE]

    One Man's Opinion
    DID MIDDLE EAST MEETING BOMB ON BROADWAY?

    by Michael D. Evans

    NEW YORK, Sept. 22, 2009 -- President Barack Obama's meeting today at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City with Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu brought little of substance, and was merely an opportunity for the world press to snap photos of the three leaders. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE MORE THINGS CHANGE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Nineteen-thirty-five was not that great a year for America. The country was still in the Depression. It already lagged behind other countries in health care. Women were far behind men in status, freedom, education and financial security. [MORE]

    Remembering Sept. 11
    TOWERS IN OUR HEART

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 11, 2009 -- What we can never know is why the Bush Administration's top officials watched the flow of reports that warned of an impending attack on the United States and did nothing to stop it. One FBI undercover operative tells of being ordered to ignore bomber Mohammad Atta and pay more attention to innocuous "wannabes" instead. An Army unit called Able Danger saw its testimony ignored after the event about an early identification of Atta; they said his photo was on their bulletin board up until the day the attacks occurred. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    CLEAN YOUR DEN, OR NO MAIDENS FOR YOU

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Buddy, is your room clean yet? [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A NATION GONE INSANE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Writing in The Washington Post last week, columnist E.J. Dionne Jr. offered perhaps the best explanation for why the right-wingers have hijacked the political agenda of the Obama Administration. [MORE]

    Momentum
    RUN LIKE A GIRL

    by Joyce Marcel

    SARATOGA SPRINGS, N.Y.. -- Along with "If God had wanted a Panama Canal, he would have put one here," "The Titanic... could keep afloat indefinitely after being struck" and "Truth will become the hallmark of a Nixon Administration," we can now add, "Colts should run against colts, and fillies should run against fillies." [MORE]

    American Opinion
    PASSWORDS FOR SALE

    by Roger Bray

    MARIETTA, Ga., Sept. 8, 2009 -- I had a strange, stilted chat today with a guy named "Rick." a customer service rep at Hackerz.com, a company that sells software for $99 that will find other peoples' passwords and sell them to you. With it, you can read everything your victims write, every character stroke they make, and even send out emails in their names. [MORE]

    The Willies
    THE COMMIES ARE COMING

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 8, 2009 -- When I was a kid growing up in the rock-ribbed Republican stronghold of Orange County, N.Y., we had a name for people who would start a movement to get kids not to listen to a Presidential address in their schoolrooms: "Communists." [MORE]

    My Horizons
    AMID HOLLAND'S BEAUTY, QUESTIONS FOR AMERICA

    by J.M. Sylvan

    AMSTERDAM -- Driving by farms with their brick barns and red tile roofs as opera played on the car radio was like being on a movie set. Was I really seeing windmills both modern and old, and a landscape dotted with cathedrals, and colorful wash on clotheslines? Yes! Pinch, pinch - I'm really here in Holland. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    WHY WE CELEBRATED LABOR DAY

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa., Sept. 8. 2009 -- Labor Day is over now, and that means about 140 million Americans are back at work after celebrating a three-day vacation. But most Americans still have no idea what Labor Day is, other than speeches, hot dogs, burgers and a pool party. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A FRAGILE TENSION

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- "Are Artists Special?" was the title of an amusing and insightful talk that the painter Wolf Kahn gave at the Brattleboro Museum and Art Center on Saturday. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A CRUCIAL MOMENT FOR THE U.S. IN AFGHANISTAN

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's been overshadowed by the ongoing battle over health care reform and the lingering effect of the current, but it's time for Americans to start paying attention to Afghanistan. [MORE]

    Constance
    MASS MURDER IN MY BACKYARD

    by Constance Daley

    GLYNN COUNTY, Ga., Sept. 3, 2009 -- The wooden sign is plain and simple: New Hope Plantation. [MORE]

    Momentum
    RENEWING THE NINETEENTH AMENDMENT

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The most remarkable thing about one significant anniversary yesterday was that it passed unremarked. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    MICHAEL VICK: REMORSEFUL EAGLE OR DIRTY BIRD?

    by Walter Brasch

    PHILADELPHIA, Sept. 1, 2009 -- The crowd at Lincoln Field gave superstar quarterback and convicted felon Michael Vick a standing ovation when he entered the game on the second play against the Jacksonville Jaguars. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    IT'S NOT A DIET: IT'S A LIFESTYLE PLAN!

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Day 1 - Starting a new diet my wife wants me to try. [MORE]

    Sen. Kennedy Remembered
    SAIL AWAY

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- At the instant they lowered Ted Kennedy's casket into the ground, lightning struck up from the earth. Yes, at precisely that instant - huge flashes illuminated the near horizon from the ground up. [MORE]

    Passings: Edward M. Kennedy
    THE LAST LIBERAL LION

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The Democratic Party's most stalwart defender of civil rights, labor rights, health care, immigration, housing and education for nearly five decades in the U.S. Senate has left us. [MORE]

    Sen. Kennedy Remembered
    WAS KENNEDY GOOD FOR HEALTH CARE?

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BOCA RATON, Fla.. Aug. 26, 2009 -- Ironically, I have long thought that if anyone but Sen. Edward Kennedy had been the spearhead of the national health care reform movement it would have passed long ago. [MORE]

    First Person
    INTERN TO THE LION

    by Zett-Alexandra Scheinbaum

    WASHINGTON, D.C., Aug. 28. 2009 -- In the fall of my senior year at American University in Washington, D.C. I was an Intern in Senator Ted Kennedy's Health, Education, Labor and Policy Committee Office. My experience as an intern was probably vastly different than most as I started about two weeks before Sept. 11. [MORE]

    Momentum
    LIKE ARGUING WITH A TABLE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Curiouser and curiouser. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WHEN WILL OBAMA START FIGHTING FOR REAL HEALTH CARE REFORM?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Like many Americans, I had hopes that President Barack Obama would live up to the high rhetoric of his campaign. At the same time, I had few illusions about the amount of resistance he would face as a President trying bring about real change. What I hadn't counted on was that the President and his Administration would prove to be so inept in dealing with an issue that's the proverbial no-brainer - health care reform. [MORE]

    My Horizons
    HEALTH INSURERS ARE FAILING 2 MILLION CHILDREN OF OUR MILITARY

    by J.M. Sylvan

    THE NETHERLANDS, Aug. 23, 2009 -- I am currently assigned to a small NATO base in the Tri-Border Area of Europe, where Belgium, The Netherland and Germany meet. It is tiny compared to other installations I've worked at. The airfield is home to AWACS (Airborne Warning and Control Systems) E3 Century planes that are serviced and flown here by 3000 people from 16 countries. The American presence of 550 personnel is just a slice of the pie that makes up the larger group. Those stationed here are high-ranking enlisted men and women and officers. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE GREAT GOVERNMENT SWINE FLU CONSPIRACY

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa., Aug. 23, 2009 -- -More than 230,000 cases of the HIN! swine flu have been confirmed world wide. About 2,100 persons have died. As much as one-fourth of America's workforce an 2 billion of the world's population may be infected by the new swine flu when it peaks in Winter, according to studies conducted by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization, respectively. [MORE]

    Constance
    FAME IS FLEETING

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga -- My shopping cart had what I call "go funny" wheels and with difficulty I eased it along the long line to the conveyer belt for checkout. I shifted from one foot to the other and stared at the ever-present magazines and tabloids on the racks along the way. These are so common, so similar one week to the next, they are like wallpaper - interesting patterns but not enough to hold my attention long enough to remember. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    JUST IMAGINE THEM NAKED

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- What is it about public speaking that scares the bejeezus out of some people? [MORE]

    Woodstock Remembered
    A MIGHTY CHANGE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Aug. 15, 2009 -- I knew the back roads to Bethel, and I still parked 7 miles away from Max Yasgur's farm that Friday afternoon. But if I'd had my way, it wouldn't have been in Bethel, anyway. [MORE]

    Reporting: Washington
    AS G.O.P. RAILED AT DEMOCRATS, IT HID FLAWED FINANCE REPORTS

    by Margie Burns

    WASHINGTON, Aug. 13, 2009 -- Documents from the Bush White House and the Republican National Committee newly released by the House Judiciary Committee show that while the Justice Department under President Bush was aggressively prosecuting local Democratic officeholders around the nation, the White House Political Affairs Office was simultaneously circulating weekly broadsides about the legal actions on a flier entitled "Democrat Ethics Breakdown." [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE STIMULUS WORKED. LET'S HAVE MORE.

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's still way too soon to proclaim an end to the current recession, but the good news is that we have avoided sliding into a depression. And we have the Obama Administration's economic stimulus plan to thank for this. [MORE]

    Momentum
    REMARKABLE WOMEN ARE IN THE NEWS

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In August of 1983, Benigno Aquino, an opponent of Philippine dictator Ferdinand Marcos, returned home from three years in exile. He didn't even make it into town - he was shot and killed at the airport. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    ONCE MORE TO THE FINISH LINE, DEAR FRIENDS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I'm not a young man anymore. I got a harsh reminder last week when my family and I went for a walk in our local park. As we walked back to the car, we got separated; my two youngest were with me, my oldest daughter and wife were a couple hundred yards ahead. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE REPUBLICAN WAR AGAINST FIRST RESPONDERS

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- It isn't unusual that the Republican party is anti-union. [MORE]

    Reporting: Panama
    AS BUS STRIKE BEGINS, PANAMA HAS NO SYMPATHY FOR DRIVERS

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    PANAMA CITY, Panama, Aug. 11, 2009 -- If a machete-wielding wild man who is foaming at the mouth with blood dribbling from one reddened eyeball tries to hitch a ride with me today, I'll probably give him a lift. [MORE]

    My Horizons
    A LOVELY NIGHT IN DÜSSELDORF

    by J.M. Sylvan

    DÜSSELDORF, Germany -- What a wonderful, rich week in Germany! After arriving in Düsseldorf on Sunday, August 2, I drove past some fantasyland buildings designed by Frank Gerhy on my way to my hotel near the Rhine River. After I took a short nap and a long walk, my friend Maki arrived at 11 p.m. [MORE]

    Constance
    DO WE WANT TO CONNECT, OR NEED TO?

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- According to a 1943 article on "self-actualization" by the late, great psychiatrist Dr. Abraham Maslow, we've learned our basic human needs are air, water, food, shelter and clothing. What Maslow formulated was a needs-based effort to motivate us using what he learned through clinical experiences with real people. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    BIG MONEY CONTROLS THE HEALTH CARE REFORM DEBATE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- According to the Center for Responsive Politics (CRP), the nonpartisan watchdog group that tracks campaign contributions and lobbying expenditures, the people who support health care reform are getting swamped by those who don't want to see any significant change to the U.S. health care system. [MORE]

    Momentum
    SHUT UP AND GO AWAY

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I'd put my life on the line for free speech, so every time I find myself telling people to shut up and go away, I'm surprised. After all, everyone has a right to his or her own opinion, no matter how deluded he or she may be. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    ORDERING AT McDONALD'S ISN'T ROCKET SCIENCE

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Oh my God!" I exclaimed to my wife, slamming the car door. [MORE]

    First Person
    MY BATTLE WITH TECHNOLOGY

    by Rebecca L. Hein

    CASPER, Wyo. -- To solve an incorrigible problem is like gazing into an overcast sky as the clouds break. Light beams onto your chilly face and in this moment of brilliance you see everything. Warm and comforted, you find strength to continue. [MORE]

    AR Editorial
    WHY YOU DON'T NEED HEALTH CARE REFORM

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Aug. 3, 2009 -- Tonight, in a remote and rural part of west-central China's Qinghai Province, a town of 10,000 mostly Tibetan people is entirely quarantined as officials try to contain an outbreak of pneumonic plague. Residents can go anywhere in Ziketan within the quarantined area, but the roads in and out are blocked and no one can leave, the New York Times reported today. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WHO HAS 'THE RIGHT STUFF' IN THE POST-APOLLO AGE?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It still seems hard to believe that 40 years ago this week, men walked on the moon. [MORE]

    Momentum
    BROADCAST NEWS

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. - Has Michael Jackson been buried yet? And is his brain in the same place as his body? Inquiring minds want to know. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    KARL THE CURMUDGEON DEALS WITH HIS GRANDSON

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Kid, I need your help," said the voice on the other end of the phone. It was Karl, my friend and part-time curmudgeon. "Come over to the house. I've got a problem." [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    IS 'CAKE' THE CURE FOR THE HEALTH CARE CRISIS?

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMBURG, Pa. -- Marie Antoinette, contrary to popular opinion, never said a solution for the starving masses of revolutionary France in late 18th-Century was "Let them eat cake." But Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) apparently said something close to it. [MORE]

    Momentum
    CLOSING CIRCLES

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- This has been a summer ritual in my home for many years: the Mom visit. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE SUDDEN DEATH OF A SMALL TOWN

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- As I watch the world of print journalism implode, I've taken comfort in knowing that at the level of the business that I inhabit, the end would be years away. [MORE]

    Constance
    DEVILS DANCING ON THE GRAVES

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- If I were to suggest being shocked that someone would rob a grave, I'd be misinforming you. Body snatchers and grave robbers have been around for at least a few thousand years. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE JOYS OF TURNING 42

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I turned a wonderful age last week. An age I've been looking forward to for a few years. [MORE]

    i>Make My Day
    MADOFF DESERVES PLENTY OF COMPANY IN PRISON

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's hard to resist being gleeful at seeing Wall Street swindler Bernard Madoff get the maximum sentence - 150 years in prison - for bilking investors out of anywhere between $65 billion and $171 billion. [MORE]

    Momentum
    NOBODY LISTENED, NOBODY LEARNED

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In 1892, Rudyard Kipling ended his poem "The Young British Soldier" with these immortal lines: "When you're wounded and left on Afghanistan's plains/And the women come out to cut up what remains/Jest roll to your rifle and blow out your brains/An' go to your Gawd like a soldier." [MORE]

    Washington Whirl
    ATTORNEY FOR BLAGO'S BROTHER GOES ON THE RECORD

    by Margie Burns

    WASHINGTON, July 8, 2009 -- The attorney representing Robert Blagojevich, brother of ousted Illinois governor Rod Blagojevich, in the "honest services" case charging Blagojevich and five others with fraud and corruption, says he will ask for public release of the famous wiretaps in the case. [MORE]

    Breaking News
    PALIN'S NOT A PROBE TARGET, U.S. ATTY. IN ALASKA SAYS

    by Margie Burns

    WASHINGTON, D.C., July 6, 2009; 8:45PM EDT -- The office of U.S. Attorney Karen L. Loeffler in Alaska today backed up the FBI in denying that former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin is under federal investigation. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    CONGRESS FIDDLES WHILE THE PLANET BURNS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Here in Vermont, we take it as a given that the weather can be extreme. But after a June that saw Seattle-like weather, with only a handful of rain-free days and precipitation that was double the norm, I'm beginning to doubt it's an aberration. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE ODD CASE OF THE MISSING IRANIAN REVOLUTION

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If a tree falls in the forest and no one hears, does it make a sound? If an oppressive government brutally kills its young and it's not reported, has it really happened? And if young people are giving their lives for democracy, does anyone care if a weird pop star has died? [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IRAN'S FUTURE WILL BE DECIDED BY IRANIANS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt., June 28, 2009 -- The massive public protests have ended in Iran. When unarmed protesters confront water cannons, tear gas and gunfire, they usually lose. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    REPUBLICAN LEADERSHIP FALLS ON ITS 'FAMILY VALUES' SWORD

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Some columns are easier to write than others. [MORE]

    Momentum
    EVIL EATING EVIL

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's been a good week for evil. It started with a phrase in a New York Times story this past Sunday that has stuck in my head. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    KARL THE CURMUDGEON HATES THE OXFORD COMMA

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "So, Kid, what do you think about this whole serial comma business?" asked Karl, my friend and part-time curmudgeon. He was referring to the second comma that appears in a list, like "red, white, and blue." [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    TWELVE ANGRY WHITE PEOPLE: JURY NULLIFICATION IN A PENNSYLVANIA COAL TOWN

    by Walter Brasch

    POTTSVILLE, Pa. -- The Schuylkill County, Pa., justice system managed to do something that insurance actuaries do with mixed results - it has determined not only the penalty for threats to a human life, but also the value of a human life. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WHY DO WE FEAR SINGLE-PAYER HEALTH CARE?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The conventional political wisdom says that single-payer health care - where the government collects taxes to finance national health insurance that covers every citizen and pays the bills for medical care - is off the table. [MORE]

    Momentum
    WHAT IF?

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- What if America is no longer the King of the World? What if the dollar is cast aside as the world's reserve currency? Everybody knows that the American economy is hanging by a thread. What if someone pulls that thread and unravels the whole shebang. What if? [MORE]

    Constance
    BOX IT, BAG IT, SHRED IT, PITCH IT

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- It's been over 50 years since I wore the exquisitely fashioned fur scarf made of three Stone Marten skins attached to each other, flashing those beady glass brown eyes as the wearer shrugged her shoulders to adjust the draping. But, I have them. They're wrapped in tissue and placed in plastic, always ready for the style to come back. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    STUDENT DENIED DIPLOMA FOR BLOWING MOM KISS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- The end of a school year is always great fodder for this column. Lawsuits by high school students unhappy with their grades, senior pranks ranging from the very minor to the outrageous, school administrators who crack down on small incidents, controversial or weird commencement speeches, and general high school shenanigans that makes normal people roll their eyes and say, "Meh, what are you gonna do?" [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    TIME TO REIN IN THE OIL SPECULATORS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- So, why is the price of crude oil now trading above $70 a barrel? [MORE]

    Momentum
    SUCKING UP THE JUICE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Now that newspapers are crumbling, many people are professing a smug kind of gladness. Newspapers are "unsustainable." They're the "dead tree" model. They're old-fashioned. Hip hip hooray for the Internet! Only old folks read newspapers anyway, and who cares what they think? Information wants to be free. [MORE]

    Constance
    A HIGH-RENT DISTRICT WITH A LOW FIXED RENT

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Immigration is in the news again, or is it "still?" There is a big difference between what I see here on St. Simons and what I see when I visit my friend in Queens, New York. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    DON'T MESS WITH INDIANA

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I love Indiana. I love the people, I love the cities and towns, I love everything we stand for: corn, car racing, and the belief that any high school basketball team anywhere can win a state championship and have a movie made about them. [MORE]

    The Willies
    EQUAL TIME FOR HATE SPEECH?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., June 15, 2009 -- I've seen a lot of crazy stuff, and a lot of great stuff, on YouTube, but only one video has taken my breath away. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE RIGHT TO KILL

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Who do you blame when you're trying to comprehend the murder - in his church - of Kansas OB/GYN Dr. George Tiller? [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    TIANANMEN, PLUS TWENTY YEARS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Looking back over two decades, it still seem hard to believe that the events of 1989 actually happened. [MORE]

    The Willies
    WHY IS ALL THE NEWS SO SLOW?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- The Hermosillo, Mexico, nursery fire that killed 42 toddlers was front and center on CNN today - four days after it happened. A glance at the crawl line before 9AM showed that story after story was four or five days out of date. When I searched cable television shows after midnight Monday morning for anything about the historic Lebanese vote for a pro-Western multicultural (Druze, Christian and Islamic) governing coaltion, not even Bloomberg had anything. More and more, it seems, "news" is old, already digested and discarded by an information-hungry public. [MORE]

    Constance
    THE CENSUS AND CONSENSUS OF OPINION

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- The 1990 Decennial Census was an eye opener for me; it was not just counting heads for an accurate picture of population growth or decline in the previous 10 years. I learned it was far more than that. We had just moved to Troy, Ohio - a small town north of Dayton, south of Toledo - and I didn't know anyone. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    SOTOMAYOR IS A GOOD CHOICE FOR THE SUPREME COURT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The speed with which Sonia Sotomayor was attacked by conservatives this week shows how high the stakes are in the upcoming confirmation hearings that will decide if she gets to sit on the U.S. Supreme Court this fall. [MORE]

    Momentum
    NUISANCE HUMANS

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's early summer. Two male goldfinches in ravishing splendor are sitting at the thistle feeder, while several varieties of hummingbirds dart around the sweet water. What's missing from this picture? [MORE]

    The Willies
    THE RELATIVITY OF TORTURE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., May 25, 2009 -- As the rancor and noise about torture and the present furor over President Barack Obama's concept of "preventive detention" have grown, I've been forced by simple honesty to look at these two things in a larger context. What I see troubles me. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE ADVENTURES OF VACATION DAD

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I took my family on vacation this week for the first time in a long time, and I was struck by a frightening thought: I've turned into Vacation Dad. [MORE]

    Constance
    NEVER TO BE FORGOTTEN

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- We always called this day "Decoration Day," even though it had long since been officially named Memorial Day on calendars and posters. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    FEAR NOT, CLASS OF '09. KNOWLEDGE IS STILL POWER

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If you're a liberal arts major, you've been probably been getting an earful as we head into the college commencement season. In the midst of the bleakest economic landscape in decades, you've been continually told that you'll have few prospects and that you should've majored in something practical. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A RIGHTEOUS NATION

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- "Open the gates that the righteous nation may enter, the nation that keeps the faith. - Isaiah 26:2." [MORE]

    My Horizons
    A MOMENT WITH HUGO CHAVEZ

    by J.M. Sylvan

    LOS ANGELES -- Stopping into the Misawa bookstore for a fun book to read as I prepared to travel for another 10 days, I spotted T.C. Boyle's newest book, The Women. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE NEWSPAPER I LOVE IS ABOUT TO DIE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Last week, for the first time in my adult life, I didn't buy a copy of The Boston Globe. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE OBAMA PARADOX

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It was a joke when he said, "My next 100 days will be so successful I will be able to complete them in 72 days. And on the 73rd day, I will rest." Right? Wasn't it a joke? [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    WHAT DICK CHENEY WON'T SAY

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Dick Cheney has apparently been on a magical mystery media tour. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    KARL THE CURMUDGEON HAS AN IDEA

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "I've got a great idea for a business. I think you're going to want a piece of this action," said my friend Karl, my literary curmudgeon and occasional drinking buddy. [MORE]

    Constance
    GLIMPSES OF MAMA

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga, -- Today, when I selected Mothers' Day cards, they were for my daughters who are mothers themselves. Yet, as I scanned the verses, I was thinking the words were just what I'd want to say to my own mother. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A FIGHT I'D LIKE TO SEE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. - The first time I was called a "content provider," I knew things were all downhill from there. [MORE]

    First Person
    THE GOVERNMENT REALLY DOES WORK (FOR US)

    by T. Johnson

    SOMWHERE IN THE DEEP SOUTH -- A long time ago and far away, a veritable child finished his baccalaureate and decided (since that was the way the political wind was blowing at the time) to run out on his student loan - for future reference, a total of three thousand dollars. [MORE]

    Andy Oram Reports
    REPLACING JOURNALISM: NEW FOUNDATIONS FOR EXPERTISE, DIVERSITY, AND DEBATE

    by Andy Oram

    CAMBRIDGE, Mass., May 4, 2009 -- Watching with an almost prurient fascination the tragic plunge of a sister institution - because the newspaper industry is cutting a path that the book industry will follow - I've noticed a subtle shift over the past few weeks from discussions of how to save newspapers to discussions of how to replace them. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    ABOUT THOSE GLIMMERS: THINGS ARE STILL LOUSY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- There's been a lot of talk of late that there are glimmers of hope in the American economy. Since President Obama's economic stimulus package was enacted and the Federal Reserve and the Treasury Department both announced plans to buy up distressed assets and backstop mortgage-backed securities, the financial markets seemed to have steadied themselves. The S&P 500 - the broadest of the main stock indices - rose 28 percent between mid-March and mid-April. [MORE]

    Reporting: Panama
    SUPERMARKET HONCHO FAVORED OVER LABOR IN PANAMA'S ELECTIONS

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    PANAMA CITY, Panama, May 3, 2009 -- A ban on sales of alcohol and heightened securities greeted Panamanian voters Sunday as a frantic and factious three-year presidential campaign finally went to the voters. Supermarket magnate Ricardo Martinelli, 57, is the odds-on favorite to replace Pres. Martin Torrijos for a six-year term. [MORE]

    The Willies
    WAS 'SWINE FLU' AN ATTEMPT TO ASASSINATE OBAMA?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., May 2, 2009 -- About six months before the H1N1 'swine flu' virus broke out, an immigrant from Bangladesh began selling food on the streets of Mexico City. Shortly before his own death, the food vendor was visited by his brother, who became ill and returned to Bangladesh. [MORE]

    Momentum
    CALM DOWN, AMERICA!

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The way I heard the story, a chicken is eating lunch when an acorn falls on her head. Deciding that the sky is falling - she's a chicken, see, so she's not very bright - she runs around telling everyone, "The sky is falling! The sky is falling!" Her friends join her to spread the word, and soon everyone is pretty much wiped out by a wily fox who sees this mass hysteria as a dining option. (Insert Dick Cheney joke here.) [MORE]

    Constance
    DON'T DRINK THE WATER; DON'T BREATHE THE AIR

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- During most of my adult life, the flu was considered an inconvenience - usually 24 hours of an upset stomach, throwing up, and perhaps a fever. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    TAKING A STAND AGAINST TORTURE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's good news for the Constitution and the rule of law that President Obama ordered the release of the Bush Administration memos that justified the use of torture and that he has not ruled out prosecuting officials who devised the policies that allowed torture to happen. [MORE]

    Constance
    DOES PRIDE GO BEFORE A FALL?

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Actually, saying "pride goes before a fall" rings true to me, but we've always been aware of it and never really hit rock bottom. We've managed to be resourceful at home and too proud to crumble outside the home. [MORE]

    An AR Editorial
    HOPE FOR EARTH

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., April 22, 2010 -- A bright, clear day is rising here on Florida's beautiful Gulf Coast as I write, bringing with it the new hope inherent in every day and the bedraggled promise that all we have done to the Earth we live on can somehow be mostly undone, its ills healed and its beauty restored. [MORE]

    Momentum
    WAITING FOR OBAMA

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- To say that the past two weeks have been surreal does not begin to explain why I spent the entire Easter weekend waiting for a call from Pres. Barack Obama. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE RESURRECTION OF INTOLERANCE

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The fanatical Far Right, after taking a few days off to catch their collective breath, is back again - with a vengeance. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE FINE LINE BETWEEN OPPOSITION AND INCITEMENT

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's hard not to laugh at the people who went to the various "tea bag" protests on Tax Day. [MORE]

    Momentum
    DINOSAUR WALKING

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Quick! Name five things we used to depend upon that are rapidly disappearing. Okay - newspapers, magazines, landlines, network television, mail. [MORE]


    VISA'S ZOO AND AQUARIUM ADS MISLEAD ABOUT ITS PHILANTHROPY

    by Rudy Socha

    LORAIN, Ohio -- Recently, as part of its GO global advertising campaign, Visa ran an ad showing a father taking his daughter to a public aquarium. The commercial was very well done and should have great appeal to young families with children, especially those who regularly visit zoos and aquariums. The tag line asks "When was the last time you took your daughter to an aquarium on a Tuesday?" [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    VERMONT STRIKES A BLOW FOR FREEDOM, EQUALITY AND LOVE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It was a great day on Tuesday when Vermont became the fourth state to legalize same-sex marriage and the first state in the country to enact it without a court order. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE PROBLEM WITH BRITISH JOB TITLES

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Look, if the British want us Americans to stop making fun of them, they have to quit doing this stuff," said Karl, my drinking buddy and literary curmudgeon. [MORE]

    Dungeons of Debt
    THE ROWBOAT AND THE DESTROYER: A PARABLE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, April 10, 2009 -- Somewhere in the godforsaken waters off Somalia, a rowboat with four pirates and a brave hostage aboard is holding off an American destroyer. A rowboat is a launch that has run out of gas, which is why it no longer merits the more elegant name. But the pirates aboard are defiant and determined to succeed, and have threatened to kill their hostage if attacked. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A DRAWN-OUT DEATH

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. - When it comes to newspapers, I'm locked into a love-hate relationship. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    FOR THESE TIMES, 'THREEPENNY OPERA' IS TIMELY

    Mark Scheinbaum

    FLAGSTAFF, Ariz., April 8, 2009 -- Halfway through the second act of an innovative Northern Arizona University production of "The Threepenny Opera" one demonstrator in a New York City crowd waves the sign: "AIG IS CRUEL !!!" [MORE]

    Constance
    WE HAVE TO DO SOMETHING

    By Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- And yet again we are waking up to news of another disaster, this time a 6.3 magnitude earthquake in Italy, 60 miles east of Rome with 237 confirmed dead and 17,000 homeless as the rescue iof anyone living or dead in the rubble continues. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    FIXING THE ECONOMY VIA SOCIAL SECURITY REFORM

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M.. April 6, 2009 -- The debates are going 'round and 'round on "fixing the economy." [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WILL OBAMA'S PRESIDENCY DIE ON THE PLAINS OF AFGHANISTAN?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The British couldn't win there. [MORE]

    Momentum
    VERMONT FIRSTS

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- If you get into the game early, you can make your mark on a lot of things. But Vermont boasts a remarkable list of firsts that go far beyond just being the 14th state in the Union (Vermont was the first state to join, on March 4, 1791, after the Constitution was ratified). [MORE]

    Constance
    TEXTING AND SEXTING AND THE VIBES IN-BETWEEN

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Hold on a minute while I take a deep breath, before I comment about the latest phenomena to strike us. It doesn't take an earthquake or a bolt of lightning to knock me flat: "Sexting" can do it, and it's all the rage among our pubescent teens and young adults. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    MY TOBOGGAN DIARY: FUN AND HALLUCINATIONS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Several weeks ago, my family and I had the chance go with some friends and their kids to the Pokagon State Park Toboggan Run. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    OBAMA DOING TOO MUCH? WHY HIS 'TO-DO' LIST IS LONG

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In the latest sign that the Republican Party has no ideas, no plan and no hope, their latest talking point against President Barack Obama is that he is trying to do too many things at once. [MORE]

    Momentum
    VERMONT SPEAKS

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. - They called him "Silent Cal," but Calvin Coolidge, the 30th president of the United States - the second one born in Vermont (the 21st president, Chester A. Arthur, was also born here) and the only U.S. president to be born on the Fourth of July - said one of the most beautiful things I've ever read about the state. [MORE]

    My Horizons
    OVERCOMING CULTURE SHOCK

    by J.M. Sylvan

    AOMORI, Japan -- The theme of this past week naturally unfolded to become Arts and Crafts. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE SECOND CIVIL WAR

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- This year marks the bicentennial of Abraham Lincoln's birth, and if he were still among the living, he would recognize the same sort of conflict that sparked the Civil War in the ongoing congressional battle over the Employee Free Choice Act. [MORE]

    Momentum
    DANCING QUEEN

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- "I can't work like this" screams the dresser, throwing a costume down. The co-producer is yelling, "OK. I'm gone! Take my name off the program. I won't have anything to do with this show!" [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    ANIMAL MUTILATION BY ANOTHER NAME: 'BREED STANDARDS'

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Legislatures in Pennsylvania and Illinois are considering bills that would reduce or eliminate what animal welfare advocates call mutilations, and what breeders and American Kennel Club (AKC) call "breed standards." Because dogs are considered by state laws to be property, individual owners may currently cut and shape dogs' ears (cropping) or amputate part or all of their tails (docking), often without a proper sterile environment or anesthesia. [MORE]

    Constance
    BARE-NAKED BARBIES

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- From the outside looking in, you would probably say I had a hardscrabble life growing up, but the world of make-believe existed on the inside as I played with my paper dolls. They were something affordable and especially nice to find under the Christmas tree. [MORE]

    My Horizons
    POETRY NIGHT!

    by J.M. Sylvan

    AMORI, Japan -- The sublime intelligence of Japanese life is traditionally encapsulated in the highly compressed poetry called the haiku, one that doesn't allow for words that are not filled with meaning. [MORE]

    Reporting: Panama
    MESSAGE FOR TODAY: A GOOD MAN GUNNED DOWN

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    PANAMA CITY, Panama, Mar. 13, 2009 -- They laid Anel Omar to rest yesterday with full state honors. The murder of a complex renaissance man who was the type of guy who probably would have cried at a funeral such as his own, was also a measure of the growing, uncontrolled violence in Panama. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    LOSING OUR RELIGION

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Greetings from Vermont, the least religious state in America. [MORE]

    Momentum
    GETTING A BUZZ

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- How timely is it that this year's Women's Film Festival in Brattleboro is showing "Passion and Power: The Technology of Orgasm," a 2007 film by Wendy Slick & Emiko Omorias? [MORE]

    An AR Exclusive
    DID THE HOUSE PLAY THE HOUSE? CASINO ADS SPORTING OBAMA LIKENESS PULLED AFTER WHITE HOUSE 'DISAPPROVES'

    by Joe Shea

    INDIANAPOLIS. March 10, 2009 -- By e-mail and telephone, the White House has signaled its disapproval of a full-blown ad campaign for an Indiana gambling firm that opens a new casino Friday, the American Reporter has learned. The offending ads show a likeness of President Barack Obama calling for economic growth and "change." [MORE]

    Constance
    'CURIOUSER AND CURIOUSER'

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Eight years ago my curiosity was aroused when a beautiful, rich and famous actress - Winona Ryder - was arrested for shoplifting $6,000 worth of clothes and hair products from a Saks Fifth Avenue store in Beverly Hills, Calif. [MORE]

    My Horizons
    THE RIGHTNESS OF THE JAPANESE WAY

    by J.M. Sylvan

    AOMORI, Japan -- In an attempt to learn more about the Japanese culture, I have been talking to people who are Japanese as well as foreigners that have lived here for a five or more years. Arriving in this country, I fell under the spell of the famous Japanese custom of extreme politeness to visitors. I found myself falling in love with a tidy, friendly, fascinating country that seemed at first, like a well-organized paradise. Now I am having the opportunity to see some stressful aspects of Japanese life. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    FINDING A WAY OUT OF IRAQ, AND NOT A MOMENT TOO SOON

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- After nearly six years and the deaths of more than 4,250 deaths of U.S. military personnel, after spending more than $700 billion on a disastrous war of choice, after missteps and miscalculations that left Iraq a shambles, it looks like this nightmare is almost over. [MORE]

    Case In Point
    THE F.T.C. CHALLENGES HYDROGEN KIT CLAIMS, AND LOSES

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., March 6, 2009 -- A New Jersey man whose company guarantees that its hydrogen-injection kits for cars and trucks will produce mileage gains of 50% or more has won a key stage of his battle with the Federal Trade Commission after a Federal Judge ruled the agency had not been able to disprove his claims. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A DIFFERENT KIND OF MOTHER

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Not since the horrors of Abu Ghraib have I been so disturbed by a story that combines women, sadism and murder. [MORE]

    Constance
    WORKIN' FOR THE YANKEE DOLLAR

    Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- When you live in a coastal region almost totally dependent upon tourism to stimulate the economy, it's quite obvious that one hand washes the other - if I may use the old British expression for bartering. It's no secret we're "workin' for the Yankee dollar." Unlike the song, the working force here does not on "next day, sit in hot sun and cool off." More likely, they are cooling their heels waiting for a call and a job. [MORE]

    Momentum
    DON'T HOLD THE PRESSES, PLEASE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- We've all heard about the town without pity, but a town without newspapers? Please. Yet is entirely possible that in a short while, both San Francisco and Philadelphia will be without them. [MORE]

    Toothless
    PART II: WHEN THE LAPDOGS GOT TEETH

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- In May 2004, the New York Times, while claiming it was aggressive in pursuing stories about the Bush-Cheney Administration, slipped in an apology for acting more as the mouthpiece for politicians than as a watchdog for society. [MORE]

    AR Opinion
    LET'S BE SERIOUS

    by Richard Thieme

    MILWAUKEE, Wisc. -- It is getting dark early, and although it's almost spring, it feels like late autumn, less and less light each day, cold winds biting our faces as we turn instinctively from the wind ... when we ought to be looking into the wind, looking for clues to how to trim our sails and adapt to a world that will never be quite the same again. [MORE]

    My Horizons
    SHAKE, RATTLE AND ROLL

    by J.M. Sylvan

    AMORI, Japan -- Japan sits on three interacting plates of the earth's crust. They interact, grind and cause quakes. This country is part of an archipelago of 3,922 islands that were formed 15 million years ago by magma-spouting volcanoes. The people here learn to live on the edge of the hostile sea and on very unstable land. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IT'S NOT PERFECT, BUT OBAMA'S STIMULUS IS A NEEDED START

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Set aside the blather of the political pundits for a moment and let this sink in: On the 24th day of his presidency, Barack Obama recorded a legislative achievement that few of his predecessors had accomplished at any point of their terms in office. [MORE]

    Momentum
    HOW VERY HIGH SCHOOL

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. - Even if it's true that we're all separated by a few degrees, I was still surprised to learn that I was connected to criminal financier Bernie Madoff. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    NEW MEXICO'S DARK THURSDAY SEES UNEMPLOYMENT SOAR 6.3% HIGHER

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Feb. 22, 2009 -- What if you woke up and found out the "recession" means that the number of your unemployed friends and neighbors in your home state, New Mexico, rocketed up an astounding 6.3% in one single, solitary, sad and sorry day? [MORE]

    PART 1:
    'TOOTHLESS:' HOW THE WATCHDOG PRESS BECAME A GOVERNMENT LAPDOG

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The president of the Associated Press (AP) was spewing venom at the Bush-Cheney Administration for having turned the Dept. of Defense into a propaganda machine. [MORE]

    Reporting: Denver
    OBAMA SIGNS $787-BILLION STIMULUS PACKAGE IN STRUGGLING DENVER

    by Ted Manna

    DENVER -- Hoping to jump-start the American economy and restore sagging consumer and corporate confidence, President Barack Obama today signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. It is, in his words, "the most sweeping economic recovery act in our history."[MORE]

    As President Barack Obama signed it into law and Vice President Joe Biden looked on, a Denver audience cheered the Democrats' historic $787-billion stimulus plan.

    AR Photo: Tony Manna

    Brasch Words
    REPUBLICANS HAVE NOTHING TO PARTY ABOUT

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Every House Republican and 11 Democrats voted against President Barack Obama's $819 billion stimulus package. It still passed by a vote of 244 to 188. [MORE]

    My Horizons
    HOMELAND INSECURITY

    by J.M. Sylvan

    SONOMA COUNTY, Calif. -- My next place of work will be Japan. The past few days I have been preparing for the two-month trip. Preparations have included several trips to the chiropractor and acupuncturist. [MORE]

    T.S. Kerrigan
    SEAMUS AND ME: LATE BIRTHDAYS IN A LOST WORLD

    by T.S. Kerrrigan

    LOS ANGELES, Calif. -- It's true, Seamus, you and I were both born in 1939, that year Hitler was marching into Czechoslovakia and Poland, that forerunner of a decade that introduced the Atomic Age. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    TIME TO SHUT OFF THE FAT CAT'S MONEY MACHINE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- On Friday, Sen. Claire McCaskill, D-Mo., said what a lot of us are thinking about Wall Street fat cats and how they are taking federal bailout money while handing out bonuses and pay raises to themselves. [MORE]

    Momentum
    CONSTRUCTIVE DESTRUCTION

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- When the Incas ruled South America, they created a series of stone highways running up and down the Andes mountains and westward to the sea. Trained runners were organized into relays. A fish caught in the Pacific Ocean in the morning could be on the plate of the Inca king in the mountains of Cuzco that night. [MORE]

    My Horizons
    SHOP 'TIL YOU DROP

    by J.M. Sylvan

    SONOMA COUNTY, CA. -- I'm sad about the state of the world economy - yet happy that the shop 'til you drop mentality is over. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    STIMULUS FOR RURAL AREAS BEGINS WITH BROADBAND

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The future of rural economies, such as where I live in Vermont, is tied to increased high-speed broadband Internet access. However, it is clear that the dream of universal access in Vermont, and other rural areas of the United States, is just that - a dream. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    TAXING A HOUSE OF CARDS

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- My wife is a smoker. Except for one year when she quit, she's been a smoker since she was about 18. But she's cut back, from as many as three packs a day to just three cigarettes. And, she now smokes outside the house. [MORE]

    Momentum
    NEWS WE CAN'T USE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- On National Public Radio's "All Things Considered" the other evening, I caught a story about President Barack Obama and the news media. The gist of it was that while Obama has promised to run an open and transparent Administration, and while he's already loosened the stranglehold that former President George W. Bush put on the Freedom of Information Act, the traditional press was feeling excluded. [MORE]

    My Horizons
    THE HIGH MORAL GROUND

    by J.M. Sylvan

    NEW YORK, NY. -- I got to talking to the Fort librarian about the conflict I was having working for the military while it was conducting an unjust war. She let me borrow a book for chaplains on ethics. I find it very helpful as I struggle with my troubled conscience. It gives me guidance by offering questions to help me focus on my behavior and those I work for. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    IT'S NATIONAL FEBRUARY MONTH!

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- I was disappointed to learn that I had missed Men's History Month this January, also known as MANuary. I blame it on the fact that I thought I knew when it was, and I just didn't look at the calendar or ask for directions. So, to assuage my guilt, I'll cover some of the different holidays, celebrations, and observances for February. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A NATION REDISCOVERS THE VALUE OF WORDS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's been a long time since we've seen this kind of excitement over a presidential inauguration. [MORE]

    Reporting: Mexico
    11 ARE KILLED IN 20 HOURS. SO WHERE'S THE MEDIA?

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    EL PASO, Tex., Jan. 25, 2009 -- By early Sunday, 11 more residents of Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, had been slain in a 20-hour period, including the sixth police officer killed this year in growing drug cartel violence. More than 65 police officers have been murdered in the border city of 1.4 million in the past year. Too often, U.S. and Mexican media have been AWOL from coverage. [MORE]

    Momentum
    WE HAVE OVERCOME

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In 1940, believing that "God Bless America" was too passive an anthem, the great folk singer Woody Guthrie wrote an answer called " Your Land." Pete Seeger, God bless him, sang it at the Inaugural Concert at the Lincoln Memorial on Sunday. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    INDIANA'S OFFICIAL STATE BEVERAGE IS ... WATER?

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- We made food history last week when Indiana declared the Wick's sugar cream as its very own State Pie. I celebrated the event by having my wife tell me I couldn't eat any because of my cholesterol. [MORE]

    Reporting: El Paso
    CIUDAD JUAREZ IS MEXICO'S POSTER CHILD FOR VIOLENCE

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    EL PASO, Tex., Jan 22, 2009 -- Do you start with the decapitated heads of police officers found in local ice cream coolers, the kindergarten kids threatened with mass kidnappings, the vigilantes who have emailed the media to prove they are serious about murdering "criminals," or do you just give up explaining it in Ciudad Juàrez, Mexico, a mile from Interstate 10 and just down the road from El Paso?. [MORE]

    The Inaugural Address
    A PROMISE DELIVERED UPON

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Jan. 20, 2009 -- The words that reached out to me from the Inaugural Address of President Barack Obama were when he spoke of what Americans can achieve when "imagination is joined to common purpose, and necessity to courage." Imagination and courage are the most powerful qualities of the American character, because it is we as a people who have progressively imagined annd created this great nation, and we who have courageously defended and extended its ideals. [MORE]

    The Inauguration

    FROM THE HUDSON TO THE POTOMAC, COURAGE AND HOPE FOR A DEPRESSED NATION

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa., Jan. 20, 2009 -- The people are good at anointing who they believe are heroes. It gives us a warm and fuzzy feeling to know there are those among us who do extraordinary things, often at the risk of their own lives. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    WHY CONSERVATIVES STILL HATE FDR

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Why do conservatives still hate President Franklin D. Roosevelt? Why have three generations of right-wingers attacked his accomplishments? It's because FDR stood up to the most concentrated and vicious attacks by the men he called "economic royalists," and came out on top nearly every time. [MORE]

    The Willies
    WILD RAMBLINGS AT 4 A.M.

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Jan. 18, 2009 -- I'm uncomfortable with hate. [MORE]

    My Horizons
    FAMILY TALES FROM NYC

    by J. M. Sylvan

    NEW YORK -- One great aspect of a job that requires traveling is the opportunity to visit with family and friends who live in the area. I have had the pleasure of meeting with my great-fraternal cousin, "Uncle Teddy", whose real name was Dan Brosnon, from Flushing, N.Y. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    PETA RENAMES FISH, WORLD ROLLS ITS EYES

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Would you eat a kitten? [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE WAR OF THE THEATER GROUPS

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Ask me why I take such a gloomy view of human nature and the possibility of peace in our time and I'll tell you the story of the dueling theater groups. [MORE]

    Breakthrough
    FUEL GENIE IS ONE MAN'S ANSWER TO ARABIAN KNIGHTS

    by Joe Shea

    CLEARWATER, Fla., Jan. 16, 2009. 4:04AM -- Here in this coastal resort town that is home to more Scientologists and assorted inventors and kooks than you can shake a stick at, Barry Holzsweig is breaking the mold today as he opens a long, sleek service station on a busy U.S. Highway 19 in an event that could be almost as important as the sale of the first Model A some 106 years ago. If Holzsweig and his handful of investors have their way, after today Americans may soon drive hybrid cars on hydrogen produced from water, added to ordinary gasoline - but much less of it. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    NOT ALL ECONOMIC STIMULUS IS CREATED EQUAL

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- President-elect Barack Obama will soon take the reins of government, and with it, the challenge of trying to keep the U.S. economy from sliding into the abyss. [MORE]

    Momentum
    GOTTA DANCE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- On the way to industrial development and globalization, groups of people lived in cultures they created themselves. [MORE]

    An AR Editorial
    AN UNJUST WAR MAY YET YIELD PEACE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Jan. 3, 2:22PM ET -- Israeli troops in the past hour have finally launched its long-awaited invasion of the 220-square mile Gaza Strip, following seven days of intense bombardment that killed at least 430 Palestinians, destroyed thousands of offices, apartments, businesses and homes and left the ordinary people of Gaza and its tens of thousands of refugees shaking with fear. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE END OF 'THE AMERICAN CENTURY'

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- As we begin a new year, it's hard not to look back on how much damage the Bush Administration has done to this nation's reputation over the past eight years and how much work will have to be done to mend it all around the world. [MORE]

    AR Archives: 2001
    TROVE OF CIA DOCUMENTS TOLD OF SOVIET WEAKNESS

    by Andrew S. Tully

    WASHINGTON, March 16-18, 2001 -- Editor's Note: At the turn of the century, a batch of recently declassified analyses by the Central Intelligence Agency offered new insight into U.S. intelligence during the Cold War. The papers covered the Soviet Union's military capabilities and social, economic, political, and foreign policy issues, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty correspondent Andrew F. Tully told The American Reporter. [MORE]

    Momentum
    HAPPY NEW YEAR!

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It was the best of times; it was the worst of times; it's January 1, 2009. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE $6 MILLION SOCIAL WORKER

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The New York Yankees just bought a first baseman for $180 million. For the next eight years, Mark Teixeira will earn about $22.5 million a season. The week before, the Yanks bought seven years of pitcher C.C. Sabathia's life for $161 million, about $23 million a season - and five years of A.J. Burnett for $82.5 million, about $16.5 million for each season, according to the Associated Press. None of the salaries include any incentive pay or outside endorsements, which add millions to each salary. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    LAKE SUPERIOR STATE'S BANNED WORDS FOR 2009

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- It's that time of year again. Or at least it was. [MORE]

    Inauguration Day
    LIVE-LINK SOCIAL MEDIA TO BRING GALAS HOME

    by Benjamin Perkins

    WASHINGTON -- A social media site called LINK-Live, based on the Obama campaign 's Web outreach, plans to bring Inauguration Day ceremonies into the homes of millions around the world. [MORE]

    The Willies
    A YEAR TO LEARN

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 29, 2008 - You can't watch events in the Middle East, South Asia or on the world's financial pages without a deep sense of foreboding. Hair-trigger tempers paired with nuclear arsenals threaten even more wars, while huge financial frauds and vast stock market debacles dash our hopes for a better world economy. Basic human needs for food, water, shelter, clothing and clean air go unmet in dozens of nations. A deep malaise of the human spirit pervades much of humanity with anger, hatred, despair, and hopelessness. Meanwhile, millions embrace Mayan predictions that the end of the world will come in 2012. It certainly feels like it could, sometimes. [MORE]

    Momentum
    EVIL OR STUPID?

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In Sicily, they say that fish start rotting from the head. In the past few months, as we've gotten closer and closer to the end of President George W. Bush's failed terms in office, we've been witnessing a mind-boggling amount of corruption, greed, evil, and downright stupidity. The smell has become almost overpowering. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    MY BACK PAGES: WATCHING MY CRAFT CHANGE OVER 30 YEARS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I got my first job in journalism at the age of 18 in the spring of 1980. I was a freshman in college and landed a night shift gig at WSPR, a radio station in Springfield, Mass. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    BUSH'S MINI-BAILOUT MISSED A MEGA-OPPORTUNITY

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., Dec. 21, 2008 -- It's not productive to spend too much time analyzing the expiring Bush Administration's bridge loan/bailout of two U.S. automakers, since the new Obama Administration will either have to enhance, ignore, or unravel the deal. But even on its face it is a squandering of one last opportunity for American industry. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE SIT-DOWN STRIKE RETURNS FOR A NEW ERA

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Every worker in America should be cheering for the workers at the Chicago-based Republic Windows and Doors. The 240 employees at Republic offered the nation an important lesson in the power of collective action. [MORE]

    My Horizons
    MILITARY MOMS ABROAD TORN BETWEEN PAY AND FAMILY

    by J.M. Sylvan

    NEW YORK -- I hope your Thanksgiving was relaxing and delicious. The holidays can bring tension and grief with them in addition to joy and celebration, especially on military bases for military moms. Did you know that the Army grants six weeks of maternity leave for new mothers and gives four months before she can be sent into combat? This does not give them enough time to establish a good bond with their infants, nor the year to breast feed them suggested by the American Academy of Pediatrics. [MORE]

    Momentum
    OFF THE GRID

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- We may talk about running out of oil in this country, but up here in Vermont, we're already practicing a lot of the survival skills we'll be needing if - or when - it happens. [MORE]

    An American Reporter Editorial
    NO TIME FOR WAR

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Dec. 1, 2008 -- Ever since I lived and worked in India for about six months in 1972, when I had the chance to meet heads of state throughout the region and many of the diplomats posted there, I have had a strong interest in its affairs. That interest was particularly well-served by two of the distinguished American Reporter Correspondents who covered the South Asia region for us. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    NOW, THE ECONOMY; LATER, THE DEFICITS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- John Maynard Keynes' most famous contribution to the science of economics was his principle that, in a recession, government must take the lead in stimulating demand through increased spending - even if it means running up a deficit. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THE MEDIA AUTO KNOW BETTER: FUELING THE FIRES OF ANTI-UNIONISM

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Our local newspaper editor, as he does regularly, once again attacked unions as the problem in America. This is the same editor who once said "all the laziest goof-offs and goldbricks in the newsroom" where he began his career were union officials - and that the unionized New York Times editorial writers are nothing more than "limousine liberals." [MORE]

    Market Mover
    HOLIDAY SHOPPING TO A DIFFERENT DRUMMER

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    SIERRA VISTA, Ariz., Nov. 28, 2008 -- Black Friday shoppers of goodwill and kind heart might hope that the neighbors near the mall in this retiree-and-military southern Arizona town never find out the home address of the Best Buy marketing genius who hired the high school drum, bugle, and glockenspiel band to pulsate the parking lot at 4AM. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    HOW THE LAWYERS LOST CHRISTMAS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- He's no poet, but AR Correspondent Erik Deckers has put his heart into the good fight for a Christmas free of lawyers and their fees. [MORE]

    Momentum
    LOVE IS ALL AROUND

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- One of the many things I'm thankful for on this Thanksgiving Day - and thank you, America, for giving us an intelligent president once again (and to you, the 58 million or so people who voted for John "The issue of economics is not something I've understood as well as I should" McCain, whatever were you thinking?) - is that we've finally seen the end of Nancy Reagan eyes. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    IT'S TIME FOR A NEW CAPITALISM

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- As we've seen over the past few months, Americans are not happy with the way things are. They want change. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    AUTO BAILOUT? WASHINGTON JUST DOESN'T GET IT

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BOCA RATON, Fla. -- The thoughts below were written three years and one month ago. No one cared about my ideas. On local and national radio for more than 14 years I made the same health care warning loud and clear to anyone who would listen. [MORE]

    Momentum
    LIZARD BRAINS

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The blogosphere exploded last Tuesday with the rumor that President-Elect Barack Obama might ask Sen. Hillary Clinton to be our next secretary of state. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    A TURKEY BY ANY OTHER NAME IS STILL GOVERNOR OF ALASKA

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- President Bush, as has every president since his father began the practice in 1989, annually pardons a Thanksgiving turkey. [MORE]

    Rebecca's World
    RECORDING THE VIRTUES OF CELLO PLAYING

    by Rebecca L. Hein

    CASPER, Wyo. -- Technology has given us practically everything, so why can't it provide a heat sensor for your phone line? Then, when you start breathing fire at the vendor you're trying to reach, someone at that company will get a clue that their automatic routing system is provoking you past all reasonable limits. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    'TWAS THE MONTH BEFORE CHRISTMAS

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- The holiday season is right around the corner, and the stores have had their Christmas decorations out since late July. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    OBAMA'S FIRST PRIORITY: STOP THE LOOTING

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- President-elect Barack Obama clearly won the 2008 presidential election because of the market meltdown. [MORE]

    Momentum
    SIGNED, SEALED AND DELIVERED

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Well, our long national nightmare is over. America had its Frank Capra moment, Mr. Smith is going to Washington after all, and it's about time. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE TOP 10 MOST ANNOYING PHRASES

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Those people at Oxford University sure are smart," said Karl, my friend, literary drinking buddy, and part-time curmudgeon. "Smart and irritating." [MORE]

    Market Mover
    DEAR ANDREW: THERE'S THIS GUY NAMED OBAMA

    Mark Scheinbaum

    PANAMA CITY, Panama -- After hosting my own election night party I awoke with a slight hangover, vaguely recalling this dream that a black guy had been elected President of the United States of America. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    REPUBLICANS FOUGHT THE WRONG WAR - AND LOST

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- One of the most famous football pictures of all time came to mind during this election season. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A BRETTON WOODS CONFERENCE FOR THE 21ST CENTURY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- In July 1944, with victory over Germany and Japan in sight, 730 delegates from all 44 Allied nations gathered in the Mount Washington Hotel in Bretton Woods, N.H., to shape the economic system for the post-World War II world. [MORE]

    The Willies
    CHANGE, AND TEARS, AT LAST

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Nov. 2, 2008 -- You would have thought I was a lunatic, the way I went walking down the street shouting into the air that Jesse Jackson was running for President. You really need to be a little odd to do something like that, but ever since my friend Dennis Gurrant, an Olympic-class broad-jumper who had beaten Bob Beamon at the Randalls Island Invitational, I have been a little odd on the topic of electing a black man president. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    PANAMA: INITIAL COOPER DUCK REACTION

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    PANAMA CITY, Panama, Oct. 31, 2008 -- I'll use Hallowe'en to relate a Panamanian horror story to anyone who is not born and bred in Panama: this is the country where one's "initial" reaction is absolutely incomprehensible. We're talking about acronyms and initials which bypass even Canada's manic imprimatur of the suffix or prefix Canada on every agency, office, and charity you can imagine. [MORE]

    Momentum
    COURAGE OUTSIDE THE COMFORT ZONE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It looks like the undecideds are going to carry Vermont's gubernatorial election, and until Saturday, I was one of them. [MORE]

    The Willies
    FREEDOM

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 28, 2008 -- Take this guy: His wife works at McDonald's, pulling down $180 a week on $7.50 an hour, and he makes a solid $15 an hour and brings home $600 a week before taxes. That $2,960 is enough to let them borrow plenty - on a home mortgage, on an F-150, a boat trailer and a snappy-looking outboard, for a family vacation with her parents, for athletic gear and special training for the older two kids. And best of all, their cinder-block 3-bedroom home that cost $132,000 in 2003 has soared in a hot market to nearly $180,000. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    FACED WITH LOSS, REPUBLICANS LOOK FOR ALIBIS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- With only nine days to go before the presidential election, it looks more and more like Democratic candidate Barack Obama will defeat Republican candidate John McCain by a substantial margin. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    DEWEY WINS! AGAIN

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ALBERQUERQUE, N.M., Oct. 26, 2008 -- I 've visited North and South Florida and North and Central New Mexico in recent days, and the political temperature 10 days before the Presidential election is elevated by the teeter-totter of global recession. [MORE]

    Momentum
    TO THEIR ETERNAL SHAME

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Outrage is a columnist's best friend. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    CHEAP-SHOT ADS COST McCAIN DEARLY

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- During the final debate last week, Barack Obama called John McCain on the negative ads, saying that 100 percent of his radio and television ads were negative. [MORE]

    Momentum
    POET OF THE AIR

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's rare that a film haunts me the way that the recent "Man on Wire" does. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    A UNITED, STABLE, DEMOCRATIC IRAQ? NEVER HAPPEN

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Despite Sen. John McCain's belief to the contrary, the situation in Iraq has become increasingly twisted and convoluted. It is almost like Milo Minderbinder, the wheeler-dealer from Joseph Heller's World War II novel "Catch-22," is in charge. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    SIMPLE LIVING AIN'T SO SIMPLE

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- My family and I moved recently. We went from the heart of Indianapolis to the northern suburbs, something which did not excite me. I don't know what I hated more, leaving our little urban dwelling, or loading and unloading two truckloads of stuff in 36 hours. [MORE]

    The Willies
    DEBATING WHILE THE HOUSE BURNS

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla. -- The presidential debate Wednesday night never mentioned the words $2.2 trillion: that's how much the banks, brokerage and investment houses and insurance companies have so far taken from the American people's Treasury of the United States. Just for your edification, that was $7,333 for every single one of America's 300,000,000 people. Of course, the people can't be trusted with it. They just pay it. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE $700 BILLION MISTAKE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- So, how's that bailout thing working out? [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    EVEN IN FRESNO, FREE SPEECH IS NOT AN ISSUE

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The Sunbird Conservatives, a student group, put out some pro-McCain literature at a recruiting table at Fresno Pacific University a week ago. [MORE]

    Constance
    IT'S NOT SEX, STUPID - IT'S COMMITMENT!

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Many of us grew up listening to the preamble to the radio and television show, "The Shadow." A deep voice asked a question opening the show that I'll paraphrase here: Who knows what lurks in the hearts of men? Given the fact that "The Shadow," who does know what lurks therein, is a fictional character shedding no light on anything in the real world, we will have to acknowledge that no one knows what lies in the hearts of men - men being generic for mankind. [MORE]

    CAMPAIGN COWARD

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I'm thinking of taking a lot of Valium until the elections are over. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE BIRDS AND BEES ARE OUT TO GET ME

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Sure, I'd be glad to help you with your homework, Honey." [MORE]

    Market Mover
    A FINANCIAL PRESCRIPTION FOR THE GLOBE

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    TRINIDAD, Colo. (Oct. 9, 2008, 12:51PM) -- Until yesterday your choices for depositing safe money around the globe were basically Ireland, Germany or the Mafia. [MORE]

    The Crisis
    WHAT YOU REALLY LOST TODAY

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 3, 2008 (3:55PM EDT) -- Like a bad joke, the Dow swung up close to 300 points today as lawmakers voted at 1 PM on the bill to bail out Wall Street banks and brokers, and then fell 450 from that point as traders began the clamor for more at the close. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    McCAIN, OBAMA BOTH COME UP SHORT ON GLOBAL ISSUES IN DEBATE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Last week's presidential debate was supposed to cover foreign policy issues, but the ongoing market meltdown was too big to ignore. [MORE]

    The Willies
    LET CONGRESS PAY YOUR BILLS

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 2, 2008 -- With $700 billion dollars - about $2,400 for every man woman and child in America - Congress has just about paid back all those American and foreign banks for every bad loan they've ever made. All those credit card debts that people didn't feel like paying will soon be paid for by taxpayer money, courtesy of Congress. So why not let them pay our bills, too? [MORE]

    THE DUMBING OF AMERICA

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Here are some of the characteristics I want in the next President of the United States: strength, character, intelligence, confidence, the ability to learn from mistakes, empathy, emotional control, a moral compass and the ability to inspire. [MORE]

    The Crisis
    AN URGENT LETTER TO THE SENATE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Oct. 1, 2008, 7:42PM EDT -- In the last two hours, I have sent the versions of the following letter to Sens. Obama, McCain, Clinton, Dodd, Biden, Kerry, (Mel) Martinez and Nelson. I have contributed to all but Martinez, who is my U.S. Senator. I told them each the same thing: [MORE]

    The Willies
    HOW TO PASS OUT A BAILOUT BILL

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 30, 2008 -- Will wonders never cease? I never thought the right-wing Republicans of the House of Representatives would join arms with the progressive Democrats that populate this newspaper and put the kibosh on President George W. Bush's greedy, unrealistic and anti-American $700 billion bailout plan for Wall Street. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    AMERICA WITHOUT THE POLITICS

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- It was Monday evening and the phone rang - again. It was probably the fifth time in two hours. A pleasant voice said she was from the - oh, that really doesn't make any difference. Both presidential candidates have volunteer minions on the phones and Internet day after day, month after month, for what has seemed like years. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE FELLER IS A SMELLER

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- As a typical Guy, I've complained loudly about the deadliness of another Guy's gas. Or joked about whether he would have to register an impact statement with the Environmental Protection Agency. Whether his butt should be registered as a lethal weapon. Whether the smeller is truly the feller. About whether - you get the picture. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    BAIL OUT MAIN STREET FIRST!

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's always time to worry when you hear that something has to be done, and done right away, or else a calamity of unimagined proportions will strike. [MORE]

    Momentum
    MY PRESCRIPTION: GET REAL

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. - Being old-fashioned and terrified of needles, I approach all surgery with trepidation. So I'm not really clear why other people regard it as a necessity, or at the very least, a vacation option. [MORE]

    The Willies
    IS IT ALL OVER BUT THE CRISIS?

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 25, 2008 2:01PM EDT (Updated 7:50 PM EDT) -- As I write, the Dow Jones Industrial Average is up 260 points on the greedy anticipation of Wall Street that a bailout package will restore CEO salaries and bonuses, and that all their bad decisions will be rectified by the American taxpayer for just $700,000,000,000. [MORE]

    Constance
    CELEBRATING IKE

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- A front-page New York Times photo update of their Website at 5:10 p.m. last Sunday led off with this sad caption: "Thousands of people who refused orders to evacuate were feared stranded across a swath of Texas. Above, residents waited outside a shelter at a high school in Galveston." [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    UNCHARTED TERRITORY FOR THE U.S. ECONOMY

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Those who thought that last week's government bailout of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac would stabilize the financial markets got a wakeup call this week. [MORE]

    The Banking Crisis
    PLAYING THE FED

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 17 (Updated Sept. 18, 2008) -- As some of the world's largest financial institutions are marched one by one to the Federal Reserve's lending window to pick up bailouts, bridge loans, cheap cash and the rest of our money, the orderly queue is getting ready to go wild. Washington Mutual is next in line, followed by Morgan Stanley and then Goldman Sachs - but who's the last before the Fed goes broke? [MORE]

    Momentum
    LIPSTICK ON WHICH PIG?

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- This is for all of you who are truly frightened by Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin: give it a rest. [MORE]

    Dungeons of Debt
    BEST BUY CHARGES $15 TO PAY BILLS DAYS BEFORE THEY'RE DUE

    by Joe Shea

    BRADENTON, Fla., Sept. 19, 2008 -- When it comes to paying your bill, Best Buy's vaunted technology is a total bust. Anyone from your bank to Chevron or a brokerage house can post a payment on the same day, but if you are within less than two days of the payment date, Best Buy wants you to pay an additional $15 - that's how corrupt this outfit is. [MORE]

    Campaign 2008
    OBAMA, PALIN STUMP IN COLORADO, PROMISE ACTION ON CRISIS

    by Ted Manna

    DENVER, Colo., Sept. 16, 2008 -- Partisan politics paused for a breath in toss-up state Colorado Monday, as the Democratic presidential candidate and the Republican vice-presidential pick both sought to sooth Americans shocked Monday morning by news of Wall Street's steepest drop since the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks, wiping out $800 billion in assets in a 504-point dive. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    9/11 PLUS SEVEN YEARS: MOURNING OUR LOST LIBERTIES

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- We've been told this time and time again by the Bush Administration since the terror attacks on New York and Washington on Sept. 11, 2001 that the civil liberties guaranteed by our Constitution are luxuries we can no longer afford and that we must learn to live without. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    SARAH PALIN: WHAT'S THERE TO TALK ABOUT?

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Defibrillator usage increased last week after John McCain announced Sarah Palin as his vice-presidential running mate and only a heartbeat from control of the nation's nuclear arsenal. But, shortly after most Republicans were shocked back to life they circled the wagons to declare she was the perfect choice. Apparently, the cure also included a dose of psychotropic drugs as well. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THE LEAN MEAN PROPAGANDA MACHINE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Vermont's unemployment rate is the highest it's been in the last 14 years (and remember - "Jim equals jobs"). It has made no progress on developing new energy resources. It's barely put a Band-Aid on health care reform. There's a gas price crisis now and one looming for heating oil this winter. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE GOOD SCISSORS: BANE OF CHILDHOOD

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- Don't use the Good Scissors! [MORE]

    Campaign 2008
    PALIN: OUT OF THE PLANE AND INTO THE FIRE

    by Ted Manna

    COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo., Sept. 6, 2008-- This is how it starts, this elaborate electoral dance with the country's voters. Republican candidate for president Sen. John McCain and Gov. Sarah Palin stepped off their brightly-lit Straight Talk Air chartered jet last night, into a cool mist visible in the blazing headlights of the happy caravan that waited to carry them straight toward their date with destiny - Election Day. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    PALIN: FROM QUAYLE TO EAGLETON TO AGNEW

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- It's been nearly a week since he announced it, and I still cannot believe that John McCain would choose someone who is arguably the most unqualified and inexperienced vice presidential nominee in recent memory. [MORE]

    Momentum
    NO MORE MR. NICE GUY

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Voters here are being entertained by an unexpectedly passionate primary race. [MORE]

    Denver Dispatch
    JOYOUS DEMOCRATS CHEER OBAMA ACCEPTANCE SPEECH

    by Ted Manna and Joe Shea

    AT THE DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION, DENVER, Aug. 28, 2008 -- The Democratic Party celebrated its hard-fought choice of a presidential nominee with world-class music, triumphal speeches and a mile-high fireworks display that mirrored the powerful emotions on display at Invesco Field in Denver as the first African-American in American history accepted the party's nomination with "profound gratitude and great humility." [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    HOW KATRINA AND ITS AFTERMATH SWEPT AWAY THE G.O.P.

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The feeling at the Democratic National Convention in Denver this week is one of euphoria, and deservedly so. Democrats believe that 2008 will be a watershed year for the party and liberalism and an electoral repudiation of the Bush years on an epochal scale. [MORE]

    Denver Dispatch
    WITH SADNESS, THE ARKANSAS DELEGATION LETS GO, AND BARACK OBAMA BECOMES THE DEMOCRATIC NOMINEE

    by Ted Manna and Joe Shea

    AT THE DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION, DENVER, Colo., Aug. 27, 2008 -- On the southernmost fringes of Democratic convention territory here, in a nondescript hotel dining room in suburban Douglas County, Colo., 17 miles from the downtown Pepsi Center where the convention's business is being conducted, 47 Arkansas delegates seemed to have a little trouble saying goodbye to their favorite sister, Sen. Hillary Clinton. [MORE]

    Momentum
    KEEPING VERMONT VERMONT

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Vermont is beautiful in late summer. Just a drive up to Burlington gets me drunk with the rolling greens and golds dotted with reds, pinks and blues. It lifts the heart to be here. But for how long? [MORE]

    Denver Disptach
    'THE FIRE IN HER EYES:' A DIALOGUE ON HILLARY

    by Ted Manna and Joe Shea

    AT THE DEMOCRATIC CONVENTION, DENVER, Aug. 27, 2008 -- American Reporter Correspondent Ted Manna and Editor-in-Chief Joe Shea watched the Hillary Clinton speech at the Democratic Convention here with different perceptions Tuesday night. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    AMERICANS NEED TO TEAR DOWN OUR WALL

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- The superstar of the 2008 Beijing Olympics may not have been the multiple medalists like Michael Phelps, but the Great Wall of China. Every network covering the Olympics took the world to see it. Almost every newspaper and magazine reporter also visited the ancient wonder of the world. [MORE]

    Denver Dispatch
    'AWESOME' MICHELLE OBAMA THRILLS DELEGATES, BUT ARRESTS SOUR MOOD FOR SOME

    by Joe Shea and Ted Manna

    AT THE DEMOCRATIC CONVENTION, DENVER, Colo., Aug. 26, 2008 [Updated 11:30PM MT] -- As Denver police sprayed tear gas and shot pepper balls at radical protestors in a park more than a mile from the Democratic National Convention here, a prospective first lady of the United States told a compelling story of a black family's hard work, struggles and slow rise to the pinnacle of American politics. [MORE]

    Denver Dispatch
    DEMS PROMISE TO LISTEN, BUT PROTESTS GO UNHEARD

    by Ted Manna and Joe Shea

    AT THE DEMOCRATIC NATIONAL CONVENTION, DENVER, Colo., Aug. 25, 2008 -- Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi started off the Democratic National convention press briefings this morning with a promise of unparalleled openness and a willingness to listen, but when 4,000 protestors concerned about everything from the Iraq War to diminishing Arctic habitat for polar bears marched two miles from the State Capitol to the Pepsi Center headquarters, convention officials were nowhere to be seen. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    AMERICA PAYS DEARLY FOR PILING ON RUSSIA IN '89

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- For the part, history is filled with missed opportunities. Perhaps the biggest one for our country came two decades ago. [MORE]

    Campaign 2008DENVER'S BIG MOMENT ARRIVES AT LAST

    by Ted Manna

    DENVER, April 22, 2008 -- The lights are strung and the banners are hung. The Pepsi Center is ready for the Democratic National Convention, which starts Monday and runs through Thursday. [MORE]

    Campaign 2008
    WARY OF PROTESTS, DEMOCRATS PAY FOR A JAIL

    by Ted Manna

    DENVER, Colo., Aug. 20, 2008 -- Just a few blocks from Martin Luther King Blvd. but seven miles from downtown, the Denver County Sheriff's Dept. today unveiled a collection of big steel cages - paid for by a $500,000 grant from the Democrats - for protestors arrested at their presidential nomnating convention here next week. [MORE]

    Reporting: Pakistan
    TORTURE OF AMERICAN MAN EXPOSES PAKISTANI SCHISMS ON BALUCHISTAN

    by Ahmar Mustikhan

    WASHINGTON,D.C., Aug. 20, 2008 -- He was forced to live like a blind man in a dark dungeon for eight months, so completely denied daylight that he could not know if it was day or night, after Pakistan's Military Intelligence secretly abducted him on suspicion of promoting U.S. interests. [MORE]

    Momentum
    THESE OLYMPICS ARE GOLD

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Shawn Johnson has the loveliest green eyes. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    ON THE HUMAN SCALE, IS AMERICA A LIGHTWEIGHT?

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- As Americans, we tend to think we are the greatest country on Earth. Few ever question whether this is really so. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A JOHN EDWARDS SERENADE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. - You've got to love John Edwards; he's the gift that keeps on giving. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    PARIS FOR PREZ

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- It was the snit heard 'round the world. The snarky, scantily-clad video response that got pundits tongues wagging about something other than politics, at least until their wives saw them. Maybe its echo has faded from the news, but it still makes me wake up screaming in the middle of the night. [MORE]

    Constance
    MURDER, REVISITED

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- When Sherlock Holmes says "Elementary, my dear Watson," he bases his further explanation of the who, when, where and why of a murder after deducing through careful investigation why he has reached that conclusion. He does not jump to conclusions based upon similar situations on record. Nor does he offer his personal opinion without having gone over every element of the case at hand. [MORE]

    Momentum
    GOODBYE, NORMA JEAN

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Unconditional love is rare, but I was lucky enough to find it in - of all places - my mother-in-law. With your permission, I'd like to tell you something about her and why I loved her so much. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    OIL DRILLING IN THE ARCTIC: AN ECOLOGICAL DISASTER WAITING TO HAPPEN

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- Are we so desperate for one last big fix of oil, that we're willing to destroy one of the world's last pristine and unspoiled regions? [MORE]

    Campaign 2008
    McCAIN STOP WINS MANY OVER IN A DENVER SUBURB

    by Ted Manna

    AURORA, Colo., July 30, 2008 -- Presumptive Republican presidential nominee John McCain brought his trademark humor and down-home charm to Colorado for the second time in a week today, seeking to shore up support in this "battleground state." [MORE]

    Momentum
    READY FOR MY CLOSE-UP, MR. LEE

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. - The day before the casting call, I fantasized that they would take one look at me - my frizzy red hair, my bright smile, my aura - especially my aura - and hand me a major part. Hollywood money would flow through my hands. The recognition I've always deserved would be mine at last. The worry over the coming winter's heating bills? Vanished with the wind. How could they not see that I was meant to be a star? [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    CARBON-FREE ELECTRICITY BY 2018? WE CAN DO THIS

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- "Goodbye from the world's biggest polluter." [MORE]

    Momentum
    10 REASONS WHY JIM DOUGLAS MUST GO

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- People always say that Vermont Gov. Jim Douglas is a nice man. But he has character as well as policy failings which we can no longer afford to overlook. Douglas's tenure has been disastrous. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    THE HOUSE OF CARDS STARTS TO WOBBLE

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- I have written often over the past few years about the house of cards that is the American economy, but the events of the past week should frighten everybody. [MORE]

    Momentum
    ON LOVE AND LOSS

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- When I first came to southern Vermont, in 1987, I had been on the road in South and Central America - literally on the road - for 14 years. You could say I had been a homeless person. Some called me "feral." [MORE]

    Make My Day
    THE BETTER B.S. DETECTOR

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- As a self-appointed fighter against corporate gobbledygook (I'm an Official BS Detector), I have railed against all jargon, corporate speak, and, well, BS that I hear from corporate America and the government. My usual method of BS detecting is to read something, point a finger pointed skyward, and shout, "This is complete and utter BS!" [MORE]

    The Willies
    RESTAURANTS OFFER WI-FI, BUT AT WHAT PRICE?

    by Joe Shea

    SARASOTA, Fla., June 18, 2008 -- I had a strong desire to write tonight, but by the time AT&T got through with me, I was exhausted, so I only wrote this. [MORE]

    Momentum
    BIG BROTHER IS WATCHING US

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- When it comes to politics, I've been feeling more like a virgin every day. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    STRETCHING YOUR BUCK IN A BEAR MARKET

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., July 9, 2008 -- Okay, you asked for detailed recommendations in a Bear market. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    CHRISTIAN NEOCONS WANT A WHITER WORLD

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- There are around 6.7 billion people sharing our planet today. And the human family is currently growing by about 1.2 percent per year. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    LEGISLATORS COULD SHOOT DOWN AIRBORNE CRUELTY

    by Walter Brasch

    HARRISBURG, Pa. -- Dave Comroe stepped to the firing line, raised his 12-gauge Browning over and under shotgun, aimed and fired. Before him, a pigeon fell, moments after being released from a box less than 20 yards away. About 25 times that day Comroe fired, hitting about three-fourths of the birds. He was 16 at the time. [MORE]

    Market Mover
    OBAMA, YOU'RE LOSING ME!

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    BOCA RATON, Fla., July 2, 2008 -- Dear Sen.Obama: Thanks for repudiating Gen. Wesley Clark's stupid comments regarding John McCain's military service and preparedness to be Commander in Chief. I really don't care about your apologies. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    THAT 'ROCKET'S RED GLARE' MAY BE CHINESE

    by Walter Brasch

    BLOOMSBURG, Pa. -- Wearing a pith helmet and brandishing a blunderbuss, Marshbaum burst into my office and ordered me to the floor. I looked at my faux friend and media foil, about to ask him what his latest scheme was. With Marshbaum, who was fed "Honeymooners" episodes by IV when he was a child, everything is a scheme to make money. But, in the fraction of time I had before he yelled for me to get under my desk and cover my head, I quickly determined he was serious. [MORE]

    Constance
    THE ELECTRONIC HIGHWAY IS A TWO-WAY STREET

    by Constance Daley

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. -- Shakespeare's character, Iago, begins a dialog in Othello saying: "Good name in man and woman, dear my lord, is the immediate jewel of their souls." Well, my good name was robbed! Iago goes on to say: "Who steals my purse steals trash; 'tis something, nothing; 'Twas mine, 'tis his, and has been slave to thousands." [MORE]

    Reporting: Pakistan
    U.S. ARMS SALES BRING BLOODSHED, BANKRUPTCY TO PAKISTAN

    by Ahmar Mustikhan

    WASHINGTON, June 30, 2008 -- The interests of the U.S. military-industrial complex appear to take precedence over U.S. national interests and human rights concerns, a recent transfer of fighter jets to Pakistan shows. [MORE]

    Brasch Words
    PENNSYLVANIA NEEDS TO RE-AFFIRM THE AMERICAN WAY

    by Walter Brasch

    HARRISBURG, Pa. -- There should have been absolutely no controversy in a resolution presented in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives this past week. [MORE]

    On Native Ground
    MAKING THE TRAINS RUN ON TIME

    by Randolph T. Holhut

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- You'd think that in the 21st Century, we could do things better than we did in the 1930's. But when it comes to train travel, that's not the case. [MORE]

    One Woman's World
    LIFE CAN BECOME TOO QUIET

    by Elizabeth T. Andrews

    CARTERSVILLE, Ga. -- They live across the street from you and something about them tugs at the corners of your mind. They have lived there for years but you hardly know them. As you pass by you wave or say hello. They wave back and some vague order is again confirmed. [MORE]

    Make My Day
    CATCH!

    by Erik Deckers

    INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. -- "Okay, Buddy, put your mitt on." [MORE]

    Market Mover
    HURRY UP FOR THE WALL STREET EXPRESS

    by Mark Scheinbaum

    ANGEL FIRE, N.M., June 26, 2008 -- The Wall Street Bull Market Express is leaving the station and you have two months, maybe three to run down the platform, take the leap, and latch on to the caboose. [MORE]

    Momentum
    A DANGEROUS REBEL BITES THE DUST

    by Joyce Marcel

    DUMMERSTON, Vt. -- The only good thing about George Carlin's death on Sunday at the age of 71 - and there is no good thing about George Carlin's death on Sunday at the age of 71 - is that he has already given us such a rich body of thought, analysis, observation and truth that it will take us the rest of our lives to work through it all - and even then, we probably won't be able to absorb or act on even a percentage of what he's said. [MORE]

    Copyright 2013 Joe Shea The American Reporter. All Rights Reserved.

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