Columns

Column: Cheap Oil and SUVs are a Sucker’s Bet

Monday, January 26, 2015

Where is the logic in buying a gas-guzzling SUV just because gas prices are so low? As gas prices have tumbled, gas-hog sales have soared. November sales of the Cadillac Escalade SUV were up 91.5 percent over November of last year. In December, sales of Ford’s Navigator rose 90.2 percent. The Dodge Ram and Chevy Silverado each saw sales increase …

Column: The Middle Class Gets Attention, but Poor Need College Aid

Monday, January 26, 2015

One could be forgiven for thinking that it’s the middle class who have suffered most from America’s failed higher-education policies, which saddled students with years of debt. Putative reformers invoke the plight of the middle class almost exclusively. President Obama’s plan to link financial aid to certain college performance metrics is from a proposal called “A Better Bargain for the Middle Class.” Likewise, …

Editorial: No Need for Nerdy Google Glass

Monday, January 26, 2015

Hard to believe it was just a few years ago when we first heard about Google Glass, the breakthrough in augmented-reality eyeglasses. And today — what a marvel! — millions of us wear this futuristic headgear to surf the Web, video-chat with mom and take hands-free photos. Oops. Cancel that augmented vision of the future. Google Glass did make its first appearance in …

Column: Pipeline Debate: Symbol Over Substance

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Washington The Senate debate over the Keystone XL pipeline, as predictable as it is unedifying, exemplifies two of the most disturbing aspects of political discourse today. The first is what might be called “talk-to-the-hand-ism” — or, perhaps updated …

Column: Why We Fight, and Lose: Our Policy Goals Are Not Attainable

Thursday, January 15, 2015

The United States has the most potent military in terms of firepower and operational capacity in history. Our military overthrew Saddam Hussein and crushed the Taliban in a matter of weeks. Our forces can direct a rocket from Nevada through a window in Kandahar, Afghanistan, and nimbly set …

Column: Are Strikes the Best Solution?

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Since the start of the Industrial Revolution, strikes have been used as a tactic by workers to fight for their rights, with strikes gaining prominence in the 1800s. Initially aimed primarily at mills and factories, strikes attempted to shut down production to force owners to compromise on salaries, …

Column: A Vermonter in France Finds SolidaritÉ

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Arnay le Duc, the village of 1,700 people in Burgnady where I live with my family, is a lot like my hometown of Norwich. It is impossible to cross the main square without saying a handful of hellos. …

Willem Lange: Many People Stand Up for Free Speech, but Mostly Their Own

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Montpelier As the news broke of last week’s homicidal attack on the satirical French journal Charlie Hebdo, many of us were left gasping, shaking our heads in sorrow, or wondering what in the world could possibly be said about such an incomprehensible act. Quite a bit, as it …

Column: Cartoons Don’t Kill People; Murderers Do

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Last week I lost four brothers — none of whom I’d ever met. Stephane Charbonnier, aka “Charb”; Jean Cabut, aka “Cabu”; Georges Wolinski; and Bernard Verlhac, aka “Tignous,” were the cartoonists assassinated along with their journalism colleagues at the French satire magazine, Charlie Hebdo. Charlie was named after …

Column: Pope Francis Rattles Both Political Conservatives and Liberals

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Washington In the Reagan era, conservative Republicans felt they had a powerful ally in Pope John Paul II, whose forceful anti-communism and anti-abortion stances played out in American politics. Today’s conservatives are apprehensive about Pope Francis, who has changed the tone and culture, not the doctrines, of the …

Column: Hypocritical World Leaders March for Free Speech

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Washington On Sunday, at least 1.5 million people marched through Paris in a dramatic display of solidarity after extremists killed 12 people at the offices of the satirical newspaper Charlie Hebdo and four at a kosher grocery last week. A police officer also was fatally shot. It was …

Forum, Jan. 13: Put the Hartford Arena Issue on Ice; Pipeline Court Fight Isn’t Over; Not Scared of Terrorists

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Put This Hartford Issue on Ice To the Editor: I’d like to clarify information regarding my involvement in the locker room issue at the new Philippe H. Bouthillier (west) wing at the Wendell A. Barwood Arena. In the fall, I drafted a proposal suggesting full-time use of two …

Column: Is Facebook’s Zuckerberg the New Oprah?

Monday, January 12, 2015

When Mark Zuckerberg makes a New Year’s resolution, people notice. This year, of course, the Facebook chief executive has segued from learning Mandarin to creating one of the Internet’s largest book clubs. His “A Year of Books” Facebook page, which encourages Facebook users to read one new book …