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Tim Blagg

Blagg: Railroad town at heart

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Wow! That’s what I thought when I read the story in The Recorder about Gov. Patrick chugging into town on a special train to announce that the state is spending a pretty good chunk of money — $17 million, he said — to get ready for Amtrak’s Vermonter. The train, which now runs up from Washington, D.C., and New York City through New Haven to Springfield, and then laboriously makes … 0

Blagg: New-age holy war

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Back in the year 613, when the Prophet Muhammad was preaching to the first few converts to what would become Islam, his message was one of peace. When he and his followers were expelled from Mecca, a small town in Arabia, they fled to nearby Medina. As they gained strength, the Prophet was … 0

Blagg: Rules of engagement

Sunday, August 17, 2014

The phrase “rules of engagement” — or ROE — is a familiar one to soldiers and police officers around the world. The rules, which should be drilled into anyone going into combat, or who routinely carries a weapon in the course of their work, carefully and specifically lay out conditions for using force … 0

Blagg: Role worth remembering

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Mavis Batey died the other day. Most people have never heard of her, but she played a key role in the secret code breaking by Great Britain during World War II. She worked at Bletchley Park, a rundown mansion surrounded by hastily thrown up huts which housed dozens … 0

Blagg: Following ‘The Plot’

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Why are we surprised that incidents involving guns and violence seem to be on the rise all over the U.S.? After all, we’ve been teaching our children that violence is the answer to almost any problem for decades. And I’m not talking about the number of guns in … 0

Blagg: Part of our carbon footprint

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Let’s talk about cellulose. No, I’m not kidding ... cellulose. You see, cellulose is an incredibly abundant organic polymer that makes up the tough fibers that constitute plant material. Stems, stalks and tree trunks are made of cellulose, … 0

Blagg: Keeping Greenfield ‘special’

Sunday, November 10, 2013

What kind of a town is Greenfield? Is it, as legend would have us believe, “the town that turned down Henry Ford?” In his fascinating 1982 social history of Greenfield — “The Conservative Rebele_SDRq — Paul Jenkins wrote that the story that Henry Ford once wanted to build … 0

Blagg: We’re still at war

Sunday, November 3, 2013

It’s hard to know which way to go. The United States finds itself in a real bind these days, caught between a rock and a hard place. We are at war, faced with an implacable, well-financed enemy that … 0

Blagg: Health care website issues

Sunday, October 27, 2013

It shouldn’t be a surprise that the government’s new health insurance website has run into problems, any more than the fact that Republicans are screaming their heads off about the snafu and claiming that it means the new … 0

Blagg: Where it’s written

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Now, I’m not by any means a grammar snob. I tend to go for writing that’s easy to read and more conversational than precisely according to, uh, Fowler. I try to use “that” and “which” correctly, but I … 0

Blagg: Seat belt law with teeth

Sunday, October 13, 2013

I’m not sure how likely it is that S-1115 will make its way through the Legislature, but it’s worth talking about. It’s a bill that would change the state’s current seat belt law to one of “primary enforcement.” … 0

Blagg: Ancient pelicans

Sunday, October 6, 2013

At regular intervals, we are treated to news videos of gigantic forest fires out west — infernos that are so big they create their own weather. As neatly coiffed correspondents do standups in front of weary firefighting crews … 0

Blagg: Key to reduce drunk driving

Sunday, September 29, 2013

All across the country, from coast to coast, thousands of drivers are climbing into their cars, pulling out a small device, and blowing into it. They have to, or the car won’t start. Then, once they hit the road, the device may suddenly issue a series of urgent … 0

Blagg: Salvaged from the sea

Sunday, September 22, 2013

In the early morning hours of Sept. 25, 1925, a small dark shape made its way toward the open Atlantic off Block Island, R.I. She was the U.S. submarine S-51, with a crew of 32. Lookouts aboard the sub spotted a small freighter, the SS City of Rome, … 0

Blagg: Legislative lesson plan

Sunday, September 15, 2013

I’m deeply suspicious of attempts by legislators to specify what courses should be taught in public schools and what the content of those courses should be. Over the years, we’ve seen states try to demand that their schools teach the Biblical version of creation as an “alternative” to … 0