P/sunny
88°
P/sunny
Hi 89° | Lo 66°

Talkback

I'll bet they taught you in journalism school to not use emotion-laden words like "terrorists" unless you were writing for a cheap propaganda sheet. I will further wager that if I were to drive you out of your home and make you live in a tent in your own backyard for the next 67 years that you would think that I, not you, was the real terrorist. Living in a tent in your backyard with limited resources, you would not enjoy an overwhelming superiority in ability to get your message across. Perhaps for the first 40 years, no one would listen to you. But then, around 1996, along comes the internet and even the humble Palestinian can have access to readers worldwide. Now your repetitions of the Israeli litany are starting to look like prostrating yourself before a false god. ...(full comment)

Blagg: Middle East missiles

For more information on exposure and the DVA read A Re-Analysis of Blue Water Navy Veterans and Agent Orange Exposure at www.bluewaternavy.org Perhaps the plight of the Vietnam Blue Water Navy Veterans who have died because of a DVA ruling on herbicide exposure should be considered wrongful deaths and be brought up on civil charges! Exposure to Agent Orange has been linked to numerous health problems, including non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, prostate cancer, Type II Diabetes, Parkinson's disease, and other issues. In 1991, legislation was enacted that empowered the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to declare certain illnesses "presumptive" to exposure to Agent Orange and enabled Vietnam veterans to receive disability compensation for these related conditions. However, in 2002, the VA limited the authority of the Act to only those veterans who could provide orders for "boots on the ground" in Vietnam. As a result, veterans who served in the waters off the coast of Vietnam were forced to file individual claims with the VA to restore their benefits, which are then decided on a case-by-case basis. After 40 years the evidence needed for these Veterans to obtain benefits no longer exists. Please help correct this inequity. I urge you, the public, to communicate to Representative Jeff Miller R-FL, the Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans Affairs, that HR 543, The Blue Water Navy Vietnam Veterans Act of 2013, now has 238 cosponsors. Call Phone: (202) 225-4136. This is enough for a discharge petition to force it to the House floor. This would be an embarrassing situation to this committee. After 14 years of being disenfranchised by the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Blue Water Navy deserves its day on the House floor for a vote. The estimate is that 30,000 Veterans of the Blue Water Navy are being denied health care today. With the fiasco facing this nation with the deaths of Veterans in care of the DVA, let’s not add to the count. Please ask Representative Miller to bring forth this bill for a full vote of the House. ...(full comment)

Letter: Agent Orange

The title of this article is very misleading, because only 52% of climate scientists who responded to a survey by their association aqgreed that there is global warming that is caused by human activities. The other 48% disagreed with that opinion. The article itself is very good, but it is hard to give all of the information in a brief article like this. The actual science shows that CO2 is a very weak greenhouse gas, and it appears that the increases in CO2 have followed warming, rather than caused it. The warming that went on from the mid 19th century until the late 1990's can be regarded as recovery from the Little Ice Age. The Earth still has not gotten back to the warmth of the Medieval Warm Period, so we are a long way from being in a dangerous position. ...(full comment)

Gran/My Turn: Climate change denial

The question is, who among our august Senators, will really stand with the citizens of our state: and who defer accountability to "there's really nothing we can do". The needs of the Northeast are .5bcf. The proposed pipelines TMG and Algongquin are so far over this that it should be obvious to anyone with half a brain that the billions of cubic feet over that amount are intended for export in KM's fleet of tankers, which is a gross abuse of eminent domain. The pipeline along the top of Massachusetts, along with the pipeline in southern MA will insure that Massachusetts becomes the shipping and storage grid for the Marcellus. These pipelines run along the top and bottom of Massachusetts with laterals planned or partially in place. Cui bono? This is going to be paid for by electricity customers to the tune of 2.5 billion dollars: recent estimates place this higher: more like 4 billion. And that figure doesn't begin to account for the environmental destruction. Forget a "superfund": by that time there will be no fund: damage permanent and unremitting. The company says "our senators have been fully briefed". None of our senators dispute this, and "they don't have a position" despite countless letters from local people. Who do they represent? We're beginning to get the picture. ...(full comment)

Letter: Losing ground

Mayor Martin is clearly uninformed. This gas is likely to be taken directly from the Marcellus Shale. He could do his community a favor and read a report by Marvin Resnikoff, Phd. on the very high radioactive content of Marcellus gas, and the dangers this poses to cities close to these shale beds. He might also want to do some due dilligence in understanding how unconventional gas is different from the "natural gas" of the past. Wonderful fantasy . . .that manufacturers will flock to Greenfield . . . . meanwhile, folks who live in surrounding towns, who shop and conduct business in Greenfield, will be economically devastated, and this area will likely become a less desireable place to live, surrounded by declining home values. ...(full comment)

In the Arena: Not all say ‘nay’ to pipeline

While I share your frustration with the continuing deteriorating situation in the Middle East, please recall that the US withdraw from Iraq was the result of the Status of Forces Agreement signed by the Bush administration. Obama became president after that agreement was signed. The current sectarian stiff we are witnessing is rooted in centuries old tribal and ethnic differences. There's very little the US can do to change that. In my opinion, it was the Bush administration's ill advised invasion that created the current hornet's nest. ...(full comment)

Letter: Foreign policy failure

I would like to see elephants protected. I would like to see severe penalties for harming them in any way. African Elephants have been living and dying for at least 3.5 million years. Left unmolested, they live about 70 years on average. Habitat loss is the single biggest threat to their continued existence. Elephant ivory is being smashed and incinerated all over the world these days. Some genius decided that that would dissuade poachers from killing elephants. Why wouldn't the recovered, poached ivory be sold at auction and the proceeds be used to pay people to protect the living elephants? When ivory and objects which have been artfully carved from ivory, or inlaid with ivory are burned or smashed, the Elephants which grew them are not restored to life. No one is protected by that additional destruction. The effect is simply the diminution of the supply of ivory which is not attached to living elephants. I am willing to entertain the idea that this policy is based on good intentions, but It seems clear to me that it is, in fact, counter-productive. I suspect that there are those behind the current campaign to destroy the stockpiles who may have ulterior motives. If it was designed to lead to the extinction of elephants in the wild, it seems likely to succeed. ...(full comment)

Blagg: Ivory ban enforcement hits sour note

The hearing on the MIAA bill will be held on Thursday, July 10th at 10:00 am in Room A-2 at the State House. ...(full comment)

In the Arena: Playing hardball with the MIAA

Having read the documents posted: and I encourage everyone to do so: there is a distressing emphasis on shareholder ROI, and no discussion of the impacts of these decisions on ratepayers, other than as an obstacle to be gotten around. It is extremely concerning that gas investment lawyers are being used to strategize on how to overcome existing policies and standards, and perhaps even laws. With much reassurance from the gas investment entities that "these won't be a problem". Actually, its heartbreaking. "The court of public opinion" they so fear is the rule of law, the role of government and appointed leaders, and the public's expectations of integrity and representation. Apparently, this is an inconvenient hurdle to massive profits and citizen concerns, ratepayer concerns, are just something to be gotten around. This is a betrayal of the whole notion of "for the people" and its clear that "the peasantry" is viewed as inconvenient to the plans of state government collusion with private investor interests. These documents make it clear that our state leadership view citizens, laws, and protections as "inconvenient ...(full comment)

Watchdog: States too cozy with gas companies

Dr. den Ouden has shown a bright light on our foreign policy blind spot. Democracy requires a long and difficult maturation process; it cannot be surgically implanted like a new heart into an unconscious patient. Sadly, the majority of the people of Iraq aren't ready. Given that we continue to make the same mistake, perhaps we should wonder who benefits from these disasters. ...(full comment)

den Ouden/My Turn: Iraq’s people must choose

"What greater good is there than the preservation of our natural resources"- Jane Shaney Well said! ...(full comment)

Ashfield joins gas pipeline opposition

Dear Joe, PTSD can be thought of as a normal human response to abnormal and tragic human experiences. You served your country, and part of that was being put in the position of witnessing violence, tragedy, and the suffering of human beings, while fearing for your own and your friends safety. Bless you for all you did on behalf of your nation, and the profound losses that attend such service. Safe travels, and loving wishes for healing and well-being. Hope you have a wonderful journey, and feel contained and supported in the land that you have served. May the beauty of the trail, and the simplicity of the journey restore your soul and nurture you. And thanks to your family too. ...(full comment)

Halfway to home

el articulo de Alice Pemberton ...(full comment)

Encores & Curtain Calls: 'She's really got it!'