Friday November 2, 2012

Sandy: Natural disaster or military operation?

Editor of the Reformer:

So close to our potentially tied election, with so many forecasters saying this was the most unusual storm they’d ever seen, there must be a call to investigate this storm as a military action.

Here’s why: Here’s what a former Booz Allen Hamilton executive, Matt Andersson, wrote to the UK Guardian earlier this year: "Few in the civil sector fully understand that geoengineering is primarily a military science and has nothing to do with either cooling the planet or lowering carbon emissions ... While seemingly fantastical, weather has been weaponised. At least four countries -- the U.S., Russia, China and Israel -- possess the technology and organization to regularly alter weather and geologic events for various military and black operations, which are tied to secondary objectives, including demographic, energy and agricultural resource management.

"Indeed, warfare now includes the technological ability to induce, enhance or direct cyclonic events, earthquakes, draught [sic] and flooding, including the use of polymerised aerosol viral agents and radioactive particulates carried through global weather systems. Various themes in public debate, including global warming, have unfortunately been subsumed into much larger military and commercial objectives that have nothing to do with broad public environmental concerns.


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These include the gradual warming of polar regions to facilitate naval navigation and resource extraction."

Jacqueline Brook,

Putney, Oct. 30

Thinking big when thinking small

Editor of the Reformer:

A fact of rural community life is that by far the greatest percentage of prospective Chamber of Commerce members fit into the category called small business.

I’m not talking about the national definition of the term which I am told could mean an enterprise of 50 or so employees. Some estimates even have that at 200.

No, I’m talking Vermont here, and Brattleboro, where small is an organization of under 10 full-time employees -- many if not most one employee enterprises.

Recognizing that too many of these single-full-time-employee businesses have had a difficult time keeping their BACC membership current or even joining to begin with, we’re looking into a special category for them for 2013.

We’ve taken our 1-4 employees level and carved out the ones. These chefs, computer techies, carpenters, editors, graphic designers, woodworkers, jewelry makers, physical therapists, accountants, web designers, caterers, architects, gardeners, social workers, plumbers, writers, violinists, dry-wallers, artists, attorneys, potters, property appraisers and yoga instructors who are such a backbone of our Chamber will be given their own member rate for 2013. At $185 it’’ about $100 lower than their rate last year.

We’re about to kick off our 107th membership drive. If your business fits this bill, please let us know. And if you know of others whose businesses do yet aren’t Chamber members, urge them to get in touch with us. We’d love to have them and of course, you -- current Chamber member or not -- move forward with us into what we’re confident will be a brighter 2013.

Jerry Goldberg,

executive director,

Brattleboro Area Chamber of Commerce,

Oct. 26

Support for
Windham school

Editor of the Reformer:

"Everything bigger is not always better." This is in reference to the "Tunnel Vision" (Oct. 5) and the decision of the Windham School Board to pull out of the RED study.

Our School Board has given us many opportunities to ask questions about the RED, but no one came to them until the Sept. 10 meeting. All the positives and negative possibilities were discussed and it was clear that right now little benefit would be gained with our school consolidating with Townshend and Jamaica. Presently we have a successful education program serving our 21 students, staying within budget guidelines. Students would be forced to bus long distances each day because of the geography of the town if the school were closed. I feel we need to support our school board. People have moved to our town because of the individual attention given each child, similar to a home school atmosphere.

Former principal John Doty and Paul Ippolito, former superintendent, have said we have "something very special here." As a graduate of the one-room school in South Windham, I cherish my heritage and am thankful that four of my grandchildren are and have been part of this school. Windham students do not suffer or lack experiences. Opportunities for sports or music are available. Former graduates from our elementary school have excelled. This last June, Caitlin Persa, graduated as valedictorian from Leland and Gray and now is pursuing her studies at Connecticut College. She gives credit to Mr. Parker Jennings for her preparation in Math and Science. Sally Newton Donahue, former graduate of our school and now teacher of PreK-third grade is loved and praised by everyone. She has a unique teaching method of combining nature and classical studies.

Let’s think local and keep our school here in Windham.

Susan L. Persa,

Windham, Oct. 9

Newfane vote rescheduled

Editor of the Reformer:

I realize Monday was a challenging day with the storm coming, but I still must "raise an eyebrow" at the Reformer’s lack of overall editorial oversight. There was unfortunately contradictory information printed in Tuesday’s paper. On Monday morning, I had informed your reporter that our Special Town Meeting needed to be postponed due to storm. I nevertheless found, on the front page of the Towns section, the erroneous information that the meeting was to be held on Oct. 30. On Page 14 of the same day’s paper was the correct information that the meeting was being rescheduled to Thursday, Nov. 8, at 6 p.m. at the NewBrook Fire Station. Does no editor proofread the full paper to ensure that an article on one page doesn’t contradict another and to determine which is correct?

This meeting has been called to decide an important issue for our town. It is crucial that town voters receive accurate and timely information about the meeting so that they will be able to listen, express their views, and vote. The meeting was postponed out of concern that some voters might have storm-related difficulties that would prevent them from attending. The meeting will be held on Thursday, Nov. 8, 6 p.m. at the NewBrook Fire Station. All are welcome to this public meeting, although only legal voters of the Town of Newfane can vote.

Jon Mack,

chair, Newfane Selectboard,

Oct. 30

Editor’s note: You are correct: Monday was a challenging day, and many pages (including the Towns page) were done well in advance by the day shift to give the night shift ample time to deal with the latest storm-related content. Sorry for the error.; we try very hard to prevent mistakes like that from making it in the paper. Running these contradictory stories was an oversight we will work harder to avoid in the future.