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If you're looking for "I Spys," dating or LTRs, this is your scene.
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Will we ever see a day when the straw man argument falls by the wayside? Mr. Obeng's hiring or ethical failings have nothing to do with the fact that teachers are now paid much more than the majority of taxpayers who fund their salaries. Asking for a 5% raise shows they are tone deaf to the struggles of the community trying to keep up with their always increasing demands. Certainly the South Burlington teachers are completely out of control as they barrel towards six-figure salaries and benefits beyond compare.
Teachers deserve good salaries. Thankfully Burlington teachers have been enjoying high salaries for many years, admittedly not at the ridiculous levels imposed upon South Burlington taxpayers. Because they are well paid, our teachers don't need large raises every year. In fact, they don't need any raise at all and the School Board is being generous offering 2%. The teacher's union is worse than the mafia, but they're not going to be able to start breaking legs as we fail to keep up with their demands for ever-spiraling payments.
I'm proud of Vermonters for not allowing Lisman or the long, grasping tentacles of Wall Street to purchase political office in our great state. The foolhardy way Lisman spent his own money sheds insight into how his investment firm Bear Stearns was mismanaged into a state of collapse. Over 15,000 employees used to work at this legendary investment house, it's hard to conceive the magnitude of financial devastation that was inflicted before Lisman left New York and returned to Vermont to meddle in politics.
Now after months of venomous attacks and unprecedented spending, Lisman is cynically trying to worm his way into Phil Scott's good graces. I trust Lisman cannot buy influence in Phil Scott's administration the way he failed to buy the election, and we all hope the loser Lisman paddles his douche canoe far away from where he can inflict harm upon the wallets of hardworking Vermonters.
Skip Vallee is a pirate, and we are his plunder. I refuse to purchase anything from any of his businesses. He has purposefully tried to corner the market and unfairly stop competition in order to charge higher prices with impunity.
I don't know how he's gotten away with this for so long, he doesn't even bother to hide his efforts. I'm so happy Costco didn't give up as it will benefit our community and they are to be applauded for using their vast resources to get ahead of Vallee's own vast resources. But I wish more people would boycott Maplefield's instead of willingly becoming Vallee's victims and dumping endless streams of hard-earned money into his overflowing pockets.
Phil Scott has been in politics for many years and run many races without controversy or venomous attacks. Yet when retired investment banker Bruce Lisman runs for office all sorts of unethical accusations arise. For me, past performance is a very large predictor of future success. I don't trust Wall Street bankers or their motives and I sure don't elect them to public office.
Whether you agree with him or not, Phil Scott has a long record of working honorably for his constituents and deserves respect as a successful local business owner who has proven himself an effective and compassionate leader, especially during the Shumlin administration's unending annals of idiocy.
I don't believe Phil Scott has suddenly changed into a person who would lie, cheat, or steal, to win public office. I haven't voted for him before but I will now. Because I vote in the direction of someone who has earned the respect of a wide faction of legislators and constituents, built a thriving Vermont business, and is possessed of integrity and political courage. Vermonters could choose to vote in a different direction, but I sure hope it isn't the direction of bankrupt Wall Street investment firms.
I've thought this many times and in many ways and have to ask Seven Days staff for a favor. Can you guys give a big hug to the person responsible for employing Paul Heintz? Having people of conscience who are unafraid to confront those in power and those seeking power is so essential to any democratic society. America was great, is great, and will be great, because there are brave reporters, editors, and publishers, who can't be bought, or bribed, or otherwise swayed from speaking truth to power and moneyed interests.
It's easy to become cynical and disheartened as so many venal people curry favor with wealthy individuals in pursuit of personal gain. I can only imagine what pressure is applied to try and force your editors to capitulate to demands for retraction or removal. Thank you Seven Days reporters, thank you Paul Heintz, for upholding the best of American principles in the pursuit of journalistic excellence and service to our great state of Vermont.
I'm a brand new Dunne convert, it's important to begin electing politicians with the courage to speak out about what they truly believe. I don't need to agree with everything a candidate espouses, but I'd like to have the choice to elect people of character. I think this attribute is more important than party affiliation. I hope Dunne can take the heat graciously and continue to display character in the face of condemnation, as the best of our politicians always have done.
I could not describe this situation any better than noted journalist Matt Taibbi, so to paraphrase his cogent quote: Wall Street bankers are great vampire squids wrapped around the face of humanity, relentlessly jamming their blood funnels into anything that smells like money. Political office sure must smell pretty sweet to Mr. Lisman.
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