Brattleboro Selectboard Meetings Have Become Too Long

Brattleboro Selectboard meetings have become very long. Too long, really.

It isn’t the number of items on the agenda. Even a short agenda can lead to a very long meeting.

Holding the meetings online might be part of the problem. 

First, it adds time to each meeting to explain how to participate. It adds time to invite people to speak and wait for them to work out technical issues. Almost every virtual meeting has delays due to the meeting being virtual. Sometimes they are short delays, but they add up.


Dealing with High Rental Costs in Brattleboro

I’ve been following the rental debate involving the Brattleboro Selectboard and the Brattleboro Tenants Union, and finding aspects of it perplexing. Brattleboro is gentrifying — it’s a hip little town in an attractive part of the country and the trend in rents has been up in recent years. That won’t get better now that people with more money than we have are moving here to get away from Covid. The solution to the problem of rising rents for lower income people has typically been to move away to someplace more affordable. It seems weird to me that you would be expected to get a loan, subsidy, or grant to rent in Brattleboro. If the rents are too high, then many moderate income people won’t be able to live here.  Simple as that.


Criminally Responsible Americans Vote for Commander of Their Worldwide Genocidal Killing Machine

Good people of the 3rd World should not let themselves be taken in by worldwide satellite beamed CIA-fed media prattling on continuously about American democracy during ongoing presidential elections. Sadly, Americans are duped into participating in elections that back crimes against humanity ordered by the ruling genocidal Wall St. plutocracy which militarily and financially plunders 3rd World humanity.


We Need A New COVID World View

One of the consequences of this lingering pandemic is a lack of perspective by too many people. Forget about the 30 percent of American sycophants of Trump because they never had a healthy perspective to lose.

What I am talking about is the ability of caring human beings to forget about how they fit into the overall scheme of things when it comes to daily life. As we temporarily lose some of the freedoms we once enjoyed we tend to forget that most of us really do not have it that bad compared to many other people in this country and around the world.


Fraudulent Election?

It’s less than 3 weeks to Election Day, and polls indicate that Biden is leading by double digits.

Trump hates to lose, and he is acutely aware of these polls.

In these days before the election, we hear allegations that Trump will attempt to retain power through voter suppression. There is a strategy to suppress voter turnout by purging voters – especially inner-city voters – and to suppress mail-in voting.


From COVID-19 To Picket Lines – One Year of Building Progressive Union Power Within The Vermont AFL-CIO

We have a long way to go before we can claim the transformative victories for Organized Labor and the working class that our dreams, desires, and needs demand. And we know that with the continuing pandemic and the economic crisis we will have many challenges before us. Even so, over the last 365 days we have made tremendous progress in making the Vermont AFL-CIO a more powerful labor organization and the most progressive State Labor Council in the North America. We have done this by diligently advancing the goals and principles articulated in our Ten Point Program For Union Power [https://vt.aflcio.org/news/vermont-afl-cio-ten-point-program]. Since your new leadership came to power in September 2019 [and again through a special election in 8/20] we have taken the following actions:

COVID-19: From the start of the pandemic we aggressively advocated for immediate actions at the State level to mitigate the worst potential consequences of the virus and the subsequent shutdown. As part of this effort we, working with allies, saw through expanded access to unemployment insurance, free childcare for essential workers, free food provided to working families, a moratorium on evictions, and crisis pay being provided to many Vermonters including the 8000 home healthcare workers organized into AFSCME Local 4802. We also stood with our healthcare workers from AFT and OPEIU when they demanded adequate PPE and safe working conditions.


Landlords & the Vermont Housing Crisis: A Response from TUB to Brandie Starr’s “Be Part of the Movement Towards a Sustainable Brattleboro”

Brandie Starr of the Brattleboro selectboard recently wrote an article titled, “Be part of the movement towards a sustainable Brattleboro” in which she directly addresses community members and, more specifically, landlords. The article is in reaction to and support of a, now notorious, proposal written by the Tenants’ Union of Brattleboro (TUB) which limits security deposits to an amount of one month’s rent or less.

Since the proposal was added to the last selectboard meeting agenda and since Starr has voiced her support, there have been rumblings of discontent from the landlord community. From voices of opposition at the selectboard meetings, to local landlord Deedee Jones’s rebuttal piece, to emails sent directly to the tenant’s union.

I am a member of TUB and a tenant who has rented four apartments in Brattleboro. On behalf of myself and the tenant’s union, I would like to elaborate on Starr’s points and examine the conditions that make a proposal like this reasonable, necessary and, quite honestly, not very radical. I would also like to address some of the voiced and rumored concerns from our local landlords.


October Surprise?

The polls so-far don’t look too good for Trump’s re-election.

His ego will not accept a defeat. He WILL go to extreme measures to prevent this.

One extreme measure might be a war.


Imagine Trump or Biden In Church Praying For Yemeni Children Facing Starvation and US Missiles?

Noting the history of the child genocide in Yemen as only one example of America’s genocidal foreign policy and cruel criminal media managed political distraction away from compassionate public interest, article seeks to awaken enough of a feeling of outrage to promote public demand for a halt of what is the ongoing murder of a massive amount of children.


Brattleboro Representative Town Meeting Team Effort

Since August most town representatives, like myself,  started refamiliarising ourselves with the town articles that still needed to be voted on . Due to Covid  19  town meeting ,for the most part, was all put on hold last March.  Zoom was the method of this rescheduled  9/12  meeting, a whole new frontier for many, a true labor of love and team effort .

I want to thank and praise my fellow TM members that managed to keep the quorum for over 13 1/2 hours with all articles voted on , this also included the 3 hour test run on the 5th.


A View From The Undecided Left

Our voting choices this year are many or few depending on who you ask. For those who’ve already decided, there’s really only one choice — their candidate. Some will vote Trump. Some will vote Biden. But for the unlucky few who haven’t sorted out their vote yet, it’s not that simple.


Americans Can Imagine How Non-Nazi Germans Felt As Their Soldiers Murderously Invaded 22 Nations

Germans witnessed their radio and newspapers hail the Nazi invasion and occupation of most of Europe while praising fallen German soldiers for their service to the fatherland; a fatherland representing the world’s most wondrously superior people. Sounds similar to the indiscriminate praise monolithic US corporate media heaps upon exceptionally marvelous and righteous USA and her many proud invasions and occupations.


David Zuckerman and Brenda Siegel

David Zuckerman and Brenda Siegel would make the team Vermont needs to move the state forward with vision, compassion, and commitment.

Most of us know what Zuckerman stands for. He has been a longtime surrogate and worker for Bernie Sanders and represents those ideals – economic and social justice, respect for the environment and the urgency of consequences of climate change.

Brenda Siegel is a less known figure, but is increasingly having an impact on what goes on in Montpelier. She’s been working tirelessly to find compassionate solutions to the opioid crisis, which we are still grappling with; and is firmly on the side of a livable wage, and Medicare for all. She is a passionate voice for the struggling, the marginalized in our society.


Affordable Housing in Brattleboro

It is very revealing that in all the comments of sympathy and advice about one family’s difficulties in finding affordable housing, a post and thread appearing very recently on fbook, not one asks if it is possible for us, as a community, to house ourselves.

The population of Brattleboro has decreased slightly from what it was in 1960. Although there is a relatively small number of new units built every year there is a very large number over that span. As far as I know not one Selectboard in all these years has tried to deal with affordable housing other than approving federally funded projects when one happened to be brought before them. Most of that money dried up long ago. Sixty years have passed and we have more people struggling with housing than ever before.


Support for Brenda Siegel as Our Next Lt Governor

I’m sharing why I am supporting Brenda Siegel to become our next Lieutenant Governor of Vermont: a decision I came to after researching Brenda’s stand on policies and noting that she embraces similar progressive values as my own.  What I believe distinguishes her from other candidates are her valuable insight and wisdom: qualifications gained through her advocacy background, business ownership and life experiences as a single Mom.

During this global health and economic crisis, Vermonters need representatives who possess a strong moral character and the guts to demand action now.  Representatives who: