The Manchester Free Press

Wednesday • September 27 • 2023


Manchester, N.H.

The 2,996 Project – Honoring the Fallen of 9/11 – Eugen Lazar

Granite Grok - Mon, 2023-09-11 15:00 +0000

I made a promise – GraniteGrok will not forget Eugen; this day we still remember what happened 22 years ago today: 9/11/2001. Someone had written a post with a short blurp “…22 years ago…”. I can’t believe that it has been THAT long – yet I vividly remember that day almost to the minute.

While it is fading from many folks’ memories, it changed us for both better and worse.

It HAS turned into a long war – the Islamic militants, while not as active as they were, still lurk even as the Russian invasion of Ukraine has taken over the “war headlines.” In the big picture, both are of a war against Freedom – both the Islamists and Socialist/Communists want all of us to bend a knee in subjugation to their decrees in every aspect of our lives. In fact, while those two act militarily, I make the supposition that the Left here in the US, having captured the High Ramparts of Society as well as the Levers of Government, are just as determined to do the same in controlling every part of our lives. Instead of howitzers and bullets, they use one facade (like Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity Climate Apocalypse, Wealth Inequality, Social Justice, and deliberately changing our language to FORCE us to accept their premises, worldview, and ideologies) after another, but it’s all for one result – they win, we lose.

Unless we, like our Revolutionary forbearers, step up and shout out, “You shall not pass!”

While it has been 22 years, it has never stopped. Simply, the means, the purpose, and the people have changed. Their goal remains – there will be no “Land of the Free” except in name only and fading memories of what used to be.

And it is a choice by you – what will you do?


We were attacked by Islamic radicals, Muslim terrorists, that believed that the United States must be removed from the world in order for a worldwide caliphate to be enacted.  Their ideological descendants, ISIS and Al Queda, still work for that end game of Dar-al-Islam.

This is a Long War and it is a religious / clash of civilizations – but our leadership does not only not believe it but has done all it can to bury it. And along with that, would bury the memory of Eugen Lazar as “inconvenient”.

(2021) Even as President Biden believes he has just “ended it”, he has forgotten the primary rule of wars – the other side also has a vote. I’m afraid that there will be more Eugene’s going forward.

Bumped from its original posting of 9/11/2006 in memory of  Eugen Lazar



9/11/2011 Eugen Lazar

The 2,996 Project was activated with the coming of the fifth year anniversary of America being attacked in a large scale terrorist operation by Islamofascists.  Bloggers from all over and of all political persuasions, each taking on the responsibility of honoring a single victim, are participating to keep the memory of the victims’ alive and show their families that we will not forget their sacrifice and loss!  I am humbled that GraniteGrok has been allowed to participate, and wish to honor Eugen Lazar in this fashion.

As the years pass by, our memories go “collective” and round up the three separate tragedies (the Twin Towers, the Pentagon, and StonyCreek Township – United Airlines Flight 93, Pennsylvania) into just one meme – “9/11”. We should, however, never forget that 2,996 innocent souls were lost that day – each one a tragedy that cannot be allowed to just be swallowed up into one event in which the Individuals are lost and forgotten. This is our effort to do so.

Again, we express our sorrow for his family and loved ones, as we do for all of the other families whose lives were shattered forever by those who hate our way of life: Freedom.

Eugen Gabriel Lazar, barely able to speak English, had immigrated to America with his Romanian parents in 1985 when he was 11, the family determined to escape communism.

“We came to this country and he knew only a few words,” recalled Elena, who lives in Glendale, Queens, with her husband, Alecsandru. “Romania was Communist at the time and that’s why we came here. Not for money. Because of communism, and this country was free.”

He was a child with a million questions. How does our body work, his mother once recalled him asking their pediatrician back in Bucharest when he was 3. When we stop walking, what makes us stop? “All these questions,” said Siu Chong, his girlfriend. “He was always wondering how everything works, always seeking for knowledge.”

In June 1992, Lazar was one of 33 Queens high school students named as a Leading Scholastic Achiever in the annual New York Newsday High Honors Competition for the borough.

With a quick mind and insatiable curiosity, Eugen mastered his studies at Grover Cleveland High School in Queens and earned a college scholarship to Cooper Union (NY), where he graduated Summa Cum Laude with a degree in engineering.

For two years, Eugen, an only child who lived in Queens with his parents, worked as a computer programmer with eSpeed, a company owned by Cantor Fitzgerald (this was the bond-trading firm located in Tower One at the World Trade Center that was so decimated by the plane attack). When he got to his 103rd floor office on Sept. 11, he e-mailed his girlfriend. By the time she read his message, it was too late.

“My heart is broken,” Elena Lazar said, sobbing about her only child, whom she buried on Monday. “He was such a wonderful boy.”

Approximately fifty alumni  of The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art worked in the World Trade Center towers. Eugen Lazar was included among the first confirmed deaths.

He had other interests as well.  Fascinated by music and how people hear it, he was building his own speakers. He was a cook and a baker. He and his girlfriend liked to make crepes together; in Paris, they watched closely to see how they were made. They had even tackled chocolate fondue.

That girlfriend, Sui Chong, a graphic designer, and he had met while on a camping trip in the Catskills years earlier.  However, it was not until learning years later that she no longer had a boyfriend, that he sent her an e-mail message asking her out for pizza), still misses him.

Their first date took place at Lombardi’s, a SoHo restaurant, and Sui remembered that night. “He was so perfect for me”.  It became the couple’s favorite restaurant and had returned once again Monday night before the fateful blast.  “Ironically, we had dinner there,” Chong said, barely able to finish her sentence through her tears, ” . . . and it was our last date.”

He was 27 at the time of his murder.

(This has been compiled by using materials found from Google and Yahoo searches, with much of the material from New York newspapers.  My thanks to them).


(Image H/T: AP/Richard Drew)

The post The 2,996 Project – Honoring the Fallen of 9/11 – Eugen Lazar appeared first on Granite Grok.

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Help New Hampshire Support Its Student’s Financial Literacy

Granite Grok - Mon, 2023-09-11 13:30 +0000

Can you be at Granite State College this Thursday by 10 AM because your help is needed? The State Board of Education will vote on whether to approve an optional financial literacy course for New Hampshire students, and the opposition is expected to be fierce.

Why, you might ask, would anyone oppose such a thing? Do they want your kids to be financially illiterate? Schools are allowed to pretend to be mental health experts, but helping students understand loans, banking, investing, credit cards, insurance, and even doing their taxes is bad.

Prager U. created the course, but it’s non-partisan. There’s nothing in it about right or left, but, but, but…it’s Prager U. That would be why certain ‘someones’ may show up and degrade, demean, and misrepresent the course.

If you’d like a few examples of the videos created by Prager U on financial literacy for kids, you can go here. Credit cards (simple vs. compound Interest). Good vs. bad Credit. Budgeting. Evil right-wing propaganda this is not, although the progs who hate Prager might take issue with this one on taxes.

The idea is to make some of the most uninteresting stuff imaginable (accounting) appealing to kids and young adults who may be blindsided by it when a world they can’t escape comes knocking on their door.

If you can attend the meeting and offer testimony (3 minutes) to support this optional program, that would be great. If attendance is not an option, you can send written testimony to

Please keep public comments and emails on topic, polite, and brief.


Meetings are held at the NH Department of Education (Granite State College Building) located at 25 Hall St., Concord, NH (unless posted otherwise). The meetings are scheduled 10:00 AM to 3:00 PM; however, meetings can end earlier or later than 3:00 PM depending on agenda items.

The post Help New Hampshire Support Its Student’s Financial Literacy appeared first on Granite Grok.

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Where Have All The Flags Gone

Granite Grok - Mon, 2023-09-11 12:00 +0000

I wrote this as a Letter to the Editor in 2006, and now, 17 years later, its meaning still holds true. Our lives since 9/11 have yet to return to normal as some of our liberties have not been restored. There is not a student in K-16 that was alive on that beautiful September morning, so it is imperative to keep the story alive.

Five years ago today, we were a unified country in a way never seen since we came together to free the world from Germany and Japan. As the Twin Towers came crashing down, and the hole was cut into the Pentagon wall. As those brave, innocent travelers brought down Flight 93 in a field in Pennsylvania instead of its supposed destination, the White House. As people in the Middle East celebrated the death of nearly three thousand folks just like us who had done nothing that beautiful fall day but go about their normal lives, we Americans came together with a bond that not many could explain but that we all felt. We were sad. We were shocked, angry, and confused, but we were united in our resolve to let the world know, to let the terrorists that wanted us all dead to know that we Americans still stood together in our need to live as the most powerful and free country in the world.

During the time following September 11, 2001, the American Flag could be seen everywhere. It flew from homes and offices. It flew from factories and apartments. It flew from car windows and the backs of motorcycles. Red, White, and Blue was a symbol of our unity, and it could be seen everywhere you traveled across this incredible nation we all love so much. We raised the flag proudly to show the world that we could be bruised and knocked to our knees, but we would never stay down. That we could take their best shot, even on our own soil, but we would never give up the fight. We were all united in our pride to be Americans, and displaying the flag was our way of showing that pride.

Five long years have passed. The flags have disappeared from the homes. They are not seen as often flapping in the wind from a car antenna. They are not seen in the storefront window. The pride is not so obvious as it was just five years ago. We need to remember what made us angry that crystal clear September morn. We need to remember what the terrorists from another land tried to take from us. We need to remind our children why it is so important to be proud of our American life and to simply be an American. Bring out the flags and raise them once again. Show the world that we are still united in our fight. Bring out the flags, and let us never forget.


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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Did the Pandemic Shutdown Affect Student Performance? Part 1 of 8

Granite Grok - Mon, 2023-09-11 10:30 +0000

At the June 6 meeting of the Croydon School Board, Associate Principal Nicole Lackie presented the results of Croydon Village School’s (CVS) end-of-year diagnostic assessment.

Of its 30 students, 25 (83%) performed below grade level, with 22 (88%) of them at the lowest level.



When asked about this result by a member of the school board, Ms. Lackie made two remarkable statements. First, she said COVID was responsible. Next, she stated that people don’t really know how to teach kids how to read.

In this series, we’ll address these two statements in detail as we explore state-level results and showcase some elementary schools in New Hampshire and Vermont.

Nicole Lackie has been the associate principal for two years. She refused to be interviewed for this story.

This past year, CVS had two multi-grade classes: K-1 and 2-4. In addition to being a part-time principal, Ms. Lackie also teaches grades 2-4. In addition, the school has a full-time K-1 teacher, who also serves as the special education case manager; two paraprofessionals; a reading specialist; and part-time teachers for music, art, and physical education.

As with many school districts, Croydon uses formative diagnostic assessments to help figure out how students are performing and where they need help. They use the STAR Test for reading and math and the Fountas & Pinnell system to test reading comprehension.

Ms. Lackie’s full response to the board member’s question started with this: “There’s a couple of things going on here and some, I just can’t tell you. One of the things is that the data includes all nine kindergarten students. There are a significant amount of students that are starting below where they should be.”

This raises some questions: Isn’t kindergarten the starting point for teaching kids to read? If that’s not the case, and if kindergarten students are not meeting initial expectations, could it be because parents aren’t aware of what those expectations are?

Even without the kindergarten students, however, there are 13 students (62%) in grades 1-4 performing at the lowest level. That’s still a lot.

Ms. Lackie also said that the effects of COVID were nothing like she would have imagined. The news is full of articles saying that the pandemic has affected student performance. The US Department of Education has declared it so. However, Croydon’s scores don’t paint that picture.

In 2022, the last year for which data is available for the New Hampshire Statewide Assessment System (NHSAS), 54% of Croydon’s students were considered proficient or above in reading. This was actually an improvement over their scores in 2019.



Objectively, the pandemic did not noticeably affect student reading performance at CVS. The larger issue, however, is that only about half the students at CVS are reading at grade level or above. This has been the case for quite a while.

COVID wasn’t the only perceived problem. Ms. Lackie continued, “There’s a lot of conversation out there about the best way to teach reading. Should we use basal readers, or is it more teacher-created, teacher-leading or something very scripted or not? There are a lot of question marks. We just don’t know.”

The Fountas & Pinnell (F&P) program, widely used around the United States, has been around since the 1980s. Because the authors are professors at the renowned Columbia University Teacher’s College, the program is assumed by many educators to be good.

F&P uses a “cueing” approach to teach reading. The idea behind Cueing Theory is that it’s easier for children to learn to read if they start with whole stories and whole sentences and do not try to read individual words. In practice, teachers cover up words in a story, then tell students to look at the picture, look at the first letter, and think of a word that makes sense. Cueing Theory says that, by practicing this approach, children can figure out on their own how to read.

This approach is at odds with reading research. The “science of reading” is based on decades of research about how students become proficient in reading and writing and why some of them have difficulty. Using brain scans and eye-tracking technology, researchers have found that good readers process virtually every letter in every word as they read. Some children catch on quickly. Some need to be taught directly how to sound out words. Learning to read is not as natural as learning to talk.

In addition, studies show that the F&P assessment scoring is unreliable. The scores change from day to day, which does not help teachers know what to focus on.

The science of reading research is summarized in an engaging podcast series called “Sold a Story,” produced by Emily Hanford, an investigative education journalist at American Public Media.

The New Hampshire Department of Education offers intensive LETRS training — Language Essentials for Teaching Reading and Spelling — to address the problems with reading. LETRS helps teachers understand the science of reading in order to help them teach better.

Croydon teachers have not taken this training, while teachers in other schools around the area have. Those schools have already started to see progress.

Observing this exchange at the Croydon School Board meeting inspired this effort to find out how the pandemic shutdowns affected elementary schools in our area and learn how they teach reading. Installments in this series will include reading scores in the U.S., New Hampshire, and Vermont and profile a few area elementary schools.

In the next article, we’ll look at New Hampshire student performance on state tests and on the National Assessment of Educational Progress to assess what impact, if any, the pandemic shutdown had on student achievement.

This article was originally published in the Eagle Times on September 9, 2023. It has been slightly edited.


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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

It’s Time for Another Episode of, Sununu Said …

Granite Grok - Mon, 2023-09-11 01:30 +0000

Fresh off yesterday’s edition of “Sununu Said,” where he asked candidates not to make it personal with Trump, we’ve got another example. Governor Sununu and a dozen legislative energy apostles signed a letter to Robert Ludlow, the CFO at ISO New England.

ISO New England manages the electric grid for the region, and the letter’s signatories believe it has made a decision that will have consequences for ratepayers.


We write with concern related to the request made by five New England states to create an executive-level environmental justice position at ISO New England. Although New Hampshire believes that ISO New England should be well-staffed to fulfill its functions, such a position would represent a wasteful expense to accommodate policy goals that fall outside of ISO New England’s mandate.’

New England must strive to achieve a reliable and affordable energy economy. We cannot lose our focus in order to accommodate policy choices designed to compel progressive societal change.


This makes for interesting reading coming from the desk of Chris Sununu. Therapists in New Hampshire can’t counsel gender-confused kids (or anyone, for that matter) who want to be their biological sex. It would violate a law that prohibits conversion therapy. Not to put too fine a point on it, but isn’t all therapy in some form about conversion? From a state of mind, you find troubling to one at which you feel at peace?

Not when gender confusion is involved. That would violate state law, but putting a gag on therapists and denying them the right to treat patients in a manner that is best for them doesn’t classify as a policy choice designed to compel progressive societal change.

That’s precisely what that is.

Related: Breaking: Gov. Chris Sununu signs HB1319 – the newest Bathroom Bill

Don’t get me wrong, I agree with the thrust of the letter to ISO New England, and I appreciate why everyone signed on. Increased salary burden aside, the presence of social justice clowns in any organization will increase costs across the board, which will be piled onto ratepayers, many of whom are already suffering under the abuse of the Biden economy. My issue is with our Woke governor’s hypocrisy.


Unfortunately, we are afraid that we are heading down a path of only paying lip service to electric reliability and affordability while aggressively pursuing cost-raising environmental justice policies and carbon taxes.


Any emphasis on Social Justice interventionism will have a negative impact, but that truth applies to everything, everywhere, all the time. If you oppose its negative fiscal impact at ISO New England, you’d best start dismantling them in your state government. And while you’re at it, if energy prices and ratepayers are a priority, stop saying you’d support rate-price-hiking boondoggles like offshore wind.



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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

The Straight-Line From COVID “Emergencies” To New Mexico’s Gun “Emergency”

Granite Grok - Mon, 2023-09-11 00:00 +0000

NeverTrump-fanatic Mikey Graham thinks the GOP can make political-hay out of New Mexico’s Governor’s suspension of the Second Amendment because of an “emergency” (see tweet below). Yet Mikey was one of the biggest cheerleaders for Sun-King Chris Sununu’s suspension of the New Hampshire constitution to fight the COVID “emergency,” which it is now undeniable was hardly an “emergency” … unless you want to go along with Debbie Birx’s creative bookkeeping where every death, no matter how obviously NOT from COVID, was nonetheless  classified as a COVID death.

Mikey, as you may recall, was gushing about Sun-King’s poll numbers over his “handling” of COVID … which shows how the majority of New Hampshire do NOT believe in liberty … and calling anyone who dared criticize the Sun-King’s assertion of dictatorial powers, “deniers” etc.. So what’s the standard, Mikey? It’s okay when a GOP Governor assumes powers not his under the Constitution on account of an “emergency,” but really, really, rally bad when a Democrat Governor does the same thing?

There’s a straight-line from COVID “emergencies” to gun “emergencies,” climate “emergencies,” diversity “emergencies,” etc., Mikey.  Maybe you should sit this one out.

The post The Straight-Line From COVID “Emergencies” To New Mexico’s Gun “Emergency” appeared first on Granite Grok.

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

2023 Constitution Day Celebration – Sunday, September 17th

Granite Grok - Sun, 2023-09-10 22:30 +0000

Join us on September 17th to Celebrate our Constitution!

This is a family event so please bring your kids with you. Invite friends too!

Please Submit Group communications or Press Releases to
Submission is not a guarantee of publication – Publication is not an endorsement.

We hope you will join us for a fun and educational day! There will be vendor tables set up so you can see what citizens around NH are doing to protect our Rghts and uphold our Constitution!

We will also have some light refreshments and end our celebration with cake!

(H/T: & Diane)

The post 2023 Constitution Day Celebration – Sunday, September 17th appeared first on Granite Grok.

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Mitch McConnell Says It Out Loud … Proxy-War With Russia Is To Enrich Military-Industrial Complex

Granite Grok - Sun, 2023-09-10 21:00 +0000

The latest rationale from the UniParty for its proxy-war against Russia … fighting a proxy-war against Russia gets us ready to fight a hot war against China. Of course, if we really wanted to slow the Chinese military build up, we could stop American companies from investing in China. But Mitch and his ilk have gotten rich from investment in China, so that’s not happening.

This tweet from McConnell (actually, obviously from the people pulling the strings on this figurehead/puppet Senator) is as disgusting as it is inane. The War in Ukraine … and all its death and devastation … is, according to Team-Mitch, just sound industrial policy. Sick. These people are sick.


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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Teacher’s Union President Blames Public Schools …

Granite Grok - Sun, 2023-09-10 19:30 +0000

This is my first dance with the current Chicago Teacher’s Union president. Stacy Davis Gates sent her son to a private Catholic School. When challenged on that choice, she blamed the lack of school choice, which is racist. School choice is racist, not the lack of it.

And what a fine example of Liberal privilege this is.


“School choice was actually the choice of racists. It was created to avoid integrating schools with Black children. Now it’s the civil rights struggle of our generation?” she wrote on X last year.


Does that make Stacy Davis Gates a racist? No, she is a victim. Of what?


Davis Gates criticized school choice, blaming such policies for the lack of resources at Chicago’s public schools.

“It was a very difficult decision for us because there is not a lot to offer black youth who are entering high school” in Chicago, Davis Gates told WBEZ.

“In many of our schools on the South Side and the West Side, the course offerings are very marginal and limited,” she said. “Then the other thing, and it was a very strong priority, was his ability to participate in co-curricular and extracurricular activities, which quite frankly, don’t exist in many of the schools, high schools in particular.”


I can only guess at her proposed solution. More money for public schools?

The 2022 Chicago city school budget was 9.5 Billion dollars. Thirty-three countries on the planet have GDPs less than the proposed Chicago city school budget. A sum that has grown consistently while test scores (racist), grades (racist), and overall performance and activities have declined.

In other words, money is not the solution, as proven by Ms. Davis Gates. If you want your child to have access to the best, you need more school choice, not less.

But Stacy Davis Gates is president of the Chicago Teachers Union, executive vice president of the Illinois Federation of Teachers, Vice President of the American Federation for Teachers, … And a hypocrite. When it comes to her kids, it is important to have options. When it comes to yours, especially those financially disadvantages by decades of Democrat rule and lousy public schools, not so much.

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Medicaid Reimbursement to Schools and the Removal of Parental Consent

Granite Grok - Sun, 2023-09-10 18:00 +0000

More attempts to remove parental consent need to be given serious thought! This is an email sent to the Superintendent in SAU21 and the School Board Members.

Dear Superintendent Nadeau,

After reviewing the published September Student Services update to the North Hampton School Board on Medicaid reimbursement to schools, information that was not included is misleading to the School Board. The Update oversimplifies the proposed changes to Medicaid and understates the changes needed in the SAU to qualify for additional funding.

The most important points omitted include:

Changes to Federal policy are only in the Proposal stage and must be adopted by States;

Existing SAU21 policies for services spend more than Medicaid reimburses because many providers do not accept Medicaid patients because of the fees paid;

Any description of SAU21 policies for this school year and specific planned changes, including how many additional students will be “covered” and increased cost;

Schools that are “Full Service Community Schools” will be designated as medical providers. Seabrook School was awarded a grant to do planning for this, but is not complete and does not include other schools;

Statement that additional screening, including medical evaluations, of children will take place; additional mandatory reporting is required; personal (medical) information for children will be retained and shared with third parties;

Parental consent for evaluations and screening is still required. (The update refers only to consent to access Medicaid insurance.)

There may be advantages for a school from Medicaid reimbursements, but it’s important to note and understand problems that could arise. As a board member, I would want to have all the information presented to me so that I could make the best decisions going forward.

Background for 2023 Changes

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) published an administrative guide dated 2023 for schools to become medical providers (emphasis added) and begin to bill Medicaid for reimbursement by setting up schools with a hospitalization license (emphasis added): Delivering Services in School-Based Settings: A Comprehensive Guide to Medicaid Services and Administrative Claiming.

This 2023 change was preceded in 2019: A Joint Information Bulletin was released on July 1, 2019, explaining the system of techniques that will be used to identify behavioral/mental health disorders as a disability that, in turn, create interventions at school that now can be used for billing Medicaid reimbursement. (Source: Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) Bulletin: pg. 3)

SAMHSA (Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration) points to PBIS, RTI, and MTSS as techniques approved for intervention services. They ARE INCLUDED in arriving at a disability/disorder for approved Medicaid billing and reimbursement. In addition, SAU21 spends a significant amount of its budget addressing the social-emotional learning and behavioral health needs of students, with trauma-informed, family-engaged implementation of the Multi-Tiered Systems of Support for Behavior and Wellness (MTSS-B).

MTSS models include screening and targeting support for students exhibiting signs of mental health conditions. PBIS, MTSS, and RTI use techniques to identify children, collect data on a child’s behavioral disabilities, use interventions, and then bill Medicaid for mental health disorders. This expansion into the area of attitudes, values, beliefs, and dispositions creates a smorgasbord of disabilities, shifting education into mental health, not academics.

The information presented in the Update (attached) indicates that parents will consent to assessments for these and additional kinds of services. “Parent consent to access a child’s Medicaid insurance is still required.”

The Proposed Rule Change

Earlier this year the Federal administration announced a proposed rule change to Medicaid billing, modifying the current rule for obtaining parental consent. The rule change would remove the requirement for parental consent. They called the rule to obtain parental consent for Medicaid billing “an unnecessary, time-consuming and emotionally fraught process for districts and parents.”

Schools would be allowed to skip over parental informed consent so that mental and medical health treatment of children at school (or by “partner” third parties chosen by the school) and billing Medicaid could move forward. This very significant proposal is omitted from your Update to the School Board and Community.

In addition, The U.S. Department of Education said it is also proposing to remove a requirement under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act that schools receive parental consent before billing public programs such as Medicaid for the first time for services they provide to students at school.

So-called Community Schools were authorized in the 2022 Federal budget. The new Community Schools (WSCC) could offer children Medicaid-funded health and mental health services. If Medicaid funds are insufficient to pay for the services offered, local taxpayers will bear the additional burden as they do now. As a result, parents may never know what services are provided to their children or by whom. We also know that personally identifiable mental health data on students are being shared by some New Hampshire schools without informed consent by the student or parents.

Personally identifiable mental health data on students has been shared with Keene State BHII without the knowledge or consent of either the students or their parents. School counselors, etc., are violating their Code of Ethics by sharing this sensitive data with the analysts at Keene State BHII. This also appears to be a violation of student privacy per the NH Constitution.

The WSCC Model is being rolled out nationwide in each state (in phases) to establish Community Schools or as they call them, Healthy Schools. WSCC stands for Whole School, Whole Community, Whole-Child.

California committed $4 Billion dollars to community schools, but would this be a wise use of NH taxpayer dollars? School board members and taxpayers should have much more factual information before the SAU changes policies unilaterally, and without full disclosure to residents. In fact, we should proceed with caution before committing the taxpayers in SAU21 to this experiment. Anything that reduces the power of our elected school board members should be scrutinized by those serving the community, and the ones who pay the taxes.

California has committed $4 billion to turning one in three public schools into a Community school. The state education board’s “Community Schools Framework” has endorsed “shared decision-making” in school governance. That means more power for teachers’ unions and less for elected school boards, and even less for parents. More significantly, the extensive testing, assessments and evaluations of students throughout their school years will remain a part of their academic record for life, which may affect schooling and career options.

Schools in SAU21 reflect declining academic results across the District. Proposals to add social service personnel do not reference any effort to address academic decline, while parents remove their children from schools to place them in independent schools. There’s little evidence to support claims that providing social services improves academic achievement, writes Williamson “Bill” Evers, among many other researchers. When Harvard researchers analyzed Harlem Children’s Zone middle schools, they concluded that high-quality schools can “significantly increase academic achievement” for low-income students, but “community programs appear neither necessary nor sufficient.”

A RAND study found “nearly zero improvement in English across three years and nearly zero gains in math during the first two years . . . but an uptick during the last year,” Evers wrote.

Denver Health provides these services. As of July 2022, their plastic surgeons offered chest reconstruction (mastectomy) to youth ages 16 and older.

It seems like now is a good time to revisit school policies to ensure parental consent is required on all mental and medical services Medicaid reimbursements and that no personally identifiable mental or medical health information is shared with anyone or any organization without informed consent by parents.

What can go wrong?

Sex ed and reproductive health in schools meant that 6th-grade girls received surprise gynecological exams without parental notification or consent in Pennsylvania. This year two young children in New Hampshire were given vaccines after their parents sent a notification to their district administrators in Nashua and Rochester telling them not to vaccinate their children.

Children who receive mental health counseling while in school can be denied an opportunity to join the military. DSM codes will identify ALL students with “mental health” disabilities that are billable to Medicaid. Codes on student records will determine what a student can or cannot do in the future.

These are serious consequences that need to be considered by all involved.

When parents are not present, mistakes happen. A better approach would be to offer these services after school hours with parents present.

Years ago, federal investigators uncovered improper billing for school-based Medicaid services, and cases of waste and fraud in several states. Money directed for medical care was used for transportation or school officials’ salaries or benefits.

In Texas, they found close to 300 incorrectly coded claims, resulting in almost $19 million of federal payments for costs not allowed under Medicaid’s in-school services program.

School administrations are supposed to be providing an education to our children— they are not in the business of providing medical services.

Oversity by parents is needed.


The Update published as part of the Agenda for the North Hampton School Board meeting dated 7 September should be revised and made more complete. The School Board and taxpayers must have complete and accurate information for additional costs anticipated and additional staffing planned in the 2024 budget. Parents must have accurate information about proposals for the treatment of their children.

School Board policies must be updated to include informed consent on all mental and medical services, assessments, treatment, and release of PII.

When teachers and school counselors are identifying our children through screening, subjective judgment observations and interventions, and psychological treatment of the social, emotional, and behavioral personality traits, who will be liable for inaccurate diagnosis? What type of data tracking is done at school for mental health? How are our children protected?

SEPTEMBER 2023 NH Student Services Board Report (1)

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

The Histrionic Follies of Volcano Deniers

Granite Grok - Sun, 2023-09-10 16:30 +0000

Many Americans who are receptive to the possibility that human activities are warming the globe may invoke the motto of the Show Me State when asking alarmists to share what is never shown – evidence.

Greta Thunberg (self-appointed Lorax of the carbon molecule), AOC (grand inquisitor of cow burps), and John Kerry (Joe Biden-appointed climate envoy and nouveau regulator of American farms) are not scientists but politicians who employ histrionics in lieu of data. The recent eruption of Hunga Tonga-Hunga Ha’apai (HTHH), a volcano in the South Pacific, exposes the endless stream of lies from these and other climate charlatans.

Underwater Volcanoes = Vaporized Ocean Hunga Tonga exploded deep on the ocean floor in 2022, a once-in-a-lifetime massive geological event that spewed incomprehensible volumes of water high into the Earth’s atmosphere. Never have satellites observed such; never have layers of the atmosphere been studied for chemical and other impacts caused by the volume of atmospheric water and aerosols. Climate scientists warn that this volcano will warm the planet and disrupt rainfall patterns. Amid record temperatures and flooding in 2023, climate politicos howl about human-caused calamity while avoiding the impacts of Hunga Tonga.

This volcano is such an elephant-in-the-climate-change room that NASA seeks to ignore inconvenient truths. Of course, science instructs that volcanic sulfur, water, carbon dioxide, and organic matter can all impact climate dramatically (even unto the extinction of dinosaurs). A political ideology blindly focused on greenhouse gases has no time to set aside dogmatic blinders for critical scientific assessment. That assessment is extremely revealing.

The impacts of HTHH were so substantial that scientists were required to develop a new technique simply to measure its height. It caused “puzzling ripples” through the atmosphere that have never before been observed, “leaving experts stumped,” according to Nature. The volcano’s water plume increased stratospheric water mass by 13% and stratospheric aerosol loads five-fold.

According to Space: “[T]he Hunga Tonga cloud burst not only through the troposphere but also ascended through the entire stratosphere, only plateauing at the altitude of 35 miles (57 km), way into the freezing and dry layer known as the mesosphere. This makes the Hunga Tonga volcanic cloud the highest ever observed.”

Volcanoes, Climate Science, and NASA Volcano and weather scientists are unsure how this blast will impact the planet, but climate ideologues have looked right past it, like snarling dogs after a rabbit. However, numerous scientific journals have hinted at Hunga Toga’s potential to warm the Earth’s surface:
  •  “Tonga Eruption May Temporarily Push Earth Closer to 1.5°C of Warming” (Eos)
  • “Water vapor from Tonga’s volcanic eruption could warm Earth for years” (Space)
  • “The 2022 Tonga Eruption May Have Caused Temporary Global Warming” (SYFY WIRE)
  • “Tonga eruption increases chances of temporary surface temperature anomaly above 1.5°C” (Nature Climate Change)
  • “Highest ever volcanic plume might have warmed Earth’s climate” (Space)

These are scientific publications, yet these sensible inquiries are shunted aside in favor of the end-of-the-world cult narrative. People might be happy to know that current climate disruptions may be temporary and volcano-caused. Yet NASA is completely mum about even the possibility. These people are volcano deniers!

Yet NASA reported last year that Hunga Tonga could cause global warming based on assessments that underestimated its size. Luis Millán, an atmospheric scientist at Jet Propulsion Laboratory, speculated that “the water vapor could start having a warming effect on the planet’s surface temperature once the accompanying cooling particles dissipate in about three years … It’s not going to exacerbate climate change.”

Science magazine reported in September 2022: “Atmospheric water vapor absorbs solar radiation and re-emits it as heat; with tens of millions of tons of Tonga’s moisture now adrift in the stratosphere, Earth’s surface will be heating up — though it’s unclear by how much … But because the vapor is lighter than other volcanic aerosols and is less affected by gravity’s pull, it will take longer for this warming effect to dissipate, and surface warming could continue ‘over the months to come,’ the scientists said.”

Nature Climate Change noted in January 2023: “This large water vapour perturbation means that HTHH will probably increase the net radiative forcing, unusual for a large volcanic eruption, increasing the chance of the global surface temperature anomaly temporarily exceeding 1.5 °C over the coming decade.”

Heatwaves, Floods, and Climate ‘Science’

Scientists who don’t know how much Hunga Tonga has impacted current conditions are trying to learn by observation; most climate alarmists register warming by human hand through their fear prism, and so turn away from this volcano like a (real, not anthropomorphic, gain-of-function) plague. NASA connects current warming to human activity with no scientific links whatsoever. The agency should stick to polluting space recklessly with techno-detritus rather than gaslighting an epic volcano. Hunga Tonga does provide a scientific connection to support a causative explanation for both current warming and flooding trends: extraordinary amounts of water in the atmosphere, like a giant terrarium, together with a five-fold amplification of stratospheric aerosol loads.

Net-zero emission “standards” are applied to cows, cars, and gas stoves but not to jet travel, ski chalets, and golf courses. Elites dictate the activities to be targeted in the nebulous name of climate change and indicate the cause for which these stoic measures are irrationally rationalized: human and no other.

Americans are told current warming and flooding are caused by working-class commuters, not a (net-zero?) war in Ukraine, (net-zero?) missions to land BIPOC people on the moon, or a never-before-seen volcanic eruption that scientists are still trying to fully fathom. Thus, climate “warriors” scuttle with ragged claws to re-bury Hunga Tonga on the ocean floor of the establishment media.


John Klar is an Attorney, farmer, and author. Mostly farmer… And Regular Contributor to GraniteGrok and VermontGrok.


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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Wyoming’s Secretary of State Asks New Hampshire to Leave Trump on the Ballot!

Granite Grok - Sun, 2023-09-10 15:00 +0000

Two weeks ago, news broke that the New Hampshire Secretary of State was investigating whether Donald Trump should be removed from the NH primary Ballot next year.

The Uniparty is promoting lawsuits in states nationwide in a last-ditch effort to derail his likely nomination.

That is not a statement of preference. It is what the polling has been telling us all year. Candidate Trump has been blowing the doors off the competition since day one. His challengers are trying to stop it. The Biden administration is out to get him. Democrat Prosecutors are bringing indictments. Third parties are filing lawsuits. The non-partisan Americans for Prosperity continue to run ads and send mailers claiming Trump is the only candidate Biden could beat, and please choose someone else.

It’s quite the spectacle. Huge sums are being leveraged, and to what end? He’s more popular among primary voters than ever.

Amid that three-ring circus comes the rise of 14th Amendment challenges to Donald Trump’s eligibility. He’s not been convicted of treason, so on its face, they are shadows of penumbras of the desires of never-Trumpers and the Democrats who fear another four years of his snooping around in their swamp. I understand their compulsion, but not everyone agrees this is how things should be conducted. Something about Democracy and counting every vote, which – silly rabbit – only applies to uniparty-approved candidates and policies.

And the swamp wants what the swap wants.

Enter Wyoming Secretary of State Chuck Gray. After hearing about Dave Scanaln’s investigation, he ‘penned’ a letter to the man asking him to stop this crazy thing.


On Thursday, Gray sent a letter to New Hampshire Secretary of State David Scanlan urging him to put Trump on The Granite State’s 2024 presidential election ballot. Gray, who was endorsed by Trump in his 2022 Secretary of State campaign, urged Scanlan, a Republican, to resist partisan politics and “grievances” and to not abuse his power by removing Trump from the ballot. ..

Gray told Cowboy State Daily he met with Scanlan earlier this year and remains concerned he is considering removing Trump from the ballot.

“It is crucial to communicate concerns with states like New Hampshire, as removal of a candidate from early primary elections will not only affect those states, but will have far-reaching ramifications in other states with later primaries, like Wyoming, and in turn the entire election process,” he said.


Any individual opinion about applying the 14th Amendment to the circumstances surrounding President Trump, real or contrived, appears to center on feelings. If you hate the guy or have been convinced he needs his train derailed for the good of the country, you are likely inclined to go with whatever makes that happen. Supporters will be predisposed to think the opposite.

I’m willing to give it all a fair shake but with an understanding much like that in SoS Gray’s closing paragraph to SoS Scanlan.

“We cannot allow authoritarian election officials to use outrageous legal theories to remove their political opponents from the ballot,” he wrote. “To so is not only un-American, it is also shocking to the conscience and utterly sickening.”


Until the man has been convicted of treason, he is innocent. Clause 3 of the 14th Amendment does not apply to feelings or preferences. Until the court case(s) have worked through the entire legal process, including appeals, if Mr. Teump met the requirement for a state to be allowed on the ballot, he should remain there. Efforts to alter laws at any level to remove him will have wide-ranging implications for Democracy and elections. On that point, I am reminded of my written testimony to the NH House Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee regarding HB 1159.


I am deeply honored to be the target of Democrat Sponsored speech suppressing legislation. The effort confirms what I have long claimed. A point that Noah Rothman just made in Commentary Magazine. Free Speech is a threat to the authoritarian tick.

That’s an amalgam of his thesis. He’s referring to a politician’s urge ” to criminalize the forms of expression [they] find distasteful.” What he calls “an old idea…that your freedom of expression is a threat to the public good.”

But HB1159 is more than that. It is a political test for speech defined by partisan lawmakers.

They decide when an interaction with a constituent is offensive to them and when they have had enough. This could be the third interaction or the tenth, the first, or never. The decision to claim you are being bullied stalked, or harassed (and when)  is not only entirely subjective and decided by the lawmaker, the potential object of HB1159’s force has no way to know what or when they will have broken the law.

Perhaps I can frame it another way, in terms that might elicit the opprobrium suited to this effort. If you would not want this power in the hands of President Trump, then you had damn well not, under any circumstance, give it to yourselves.

Because while you feel like it may at this time serve some purpose that is, in reality, nothing more than personal interest (not for the good of the people), imagine that same power in the hands of your political opponents when you are the citizen and they are the public official.

I would oppose it regardless of who proposed it, you should as well.


Be careful what you do with political power. Abusing it can, in all likelihood, come back to bite you in the ass.


HT | The Cowboy Daily

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

The Police State Of America … New Mexico Governor Declares “Emergency,” Suspends First And Second Amendments

Granite Grok - Sun, 2023-09-10 13:30 +0000

Don’t quote law to men with swords … or something to that effect … attributed to Pompey. One of the leading characters in the transformation of Rome from a Republic to a dictatorship.  It is happening right now in plain sight in America … the FBI is a domestic terror organization, the USDOJ a political tool of the Democrats, the Biden-Regime’s unlawful open-borders policies, etc., etc., etc.. But what do we get from the GOP’ “leaders”? PUTIN, PUTIN, PUTIN … PUTIN’s the real threat … PUTIN, PUTIN, PUTIN. Indeed, it is almost as if GOP “leaders” are complicit in the transformation of America from a Republic to a Police State:

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

The State Wants to Suck Electricity from the SUV You Are Required to Buy

Granite Grok - Sun, 2023-09-10 12:00 +0000

A literal power vacuum—that’s what California Senate Bill 233 proposes. And what is to be sucked? Your electric car.

The bill—which has passed the Senate and is now winding its way through the Assembly—states that all new electric vehicles to be sold in California after 2030 be “bidirectional.”

Because the state has decided to essentially go all electric without having the ability to actually provide enough electricity, the climate warriors have gotten a bit creative and now see the millions of electric vehicles (EVs) in the state as tiny batteries to make up for their incompetence.

Currently, not every EV can send power back to the grid (like home solar panels that ship excess power to their local utility.) The bill—almost certain to pass because this is California—would change that.

The bill, however, is only the first step in the process of being able to drain your EV, as the technology to get the electricity back onto the grid does not actually exist. As with so many other Golden State climate-related projects, it is based on being able to do it someday . . . probably . . . maybe.

While this approach allows solons and nabobs to tout their green-a-fides, set even more absurd future goals by assuming things will work eventually, increase state spending to fund such projects, and create an excuse to not actually do anything practical—like build natural gas generators—to shore up the state’s extremely wobbly grid, it does nothing to address California’s self-imposed “energy insecurity.”

The idea becomes even more absurd when one considers that shortly after announcing all new vehicles sold in the state by 2035 must be electric, the state asked the public to not charge their EVs after work because the grid couldn’t handle it. In theory, this bill raises the specter of electricity being drained out of your full Tesla to power your neighbor’s empty Volt.

Furthermore, the concept is extremely dangerous. Imagine an emergency situation in which you have to leave your home immediately but you cannot because the state drained your car. The implications for fire evacuations, earthquake response, etc. are terrifying.

And its not terribly clear if you would get paid for your power and/or if you would have to buy it back.

Beyond the impracticalities, the concept does shine a light, as it were, on how easily the electrical power supply can be controlled and—if the grid is your only power option (no gas cars, no gas stoves, no propane, etc.)—how easily the public can be controlled through it.

From “The Psychology of Electricity”:

Now, a person can go to a gas station, put solar panels on their roof, buy propane at the hardware store, use natural gas in their home, even cut down trees to burn for heat. In other words, there are options other than electricity; there are literally millions of ways to not need to use electricity.

But imagine a literally all-electric world—you are reduced, confined, required to get the energy you need to live from one source, one centrally (by necessity) controlled source that everything you own runs on, one centrally controlled source that can cut the power to your specific home anytime it wants.

Conceivably—see China/social credit systems/central bank digital currency/“you’ll own nothing and be happy” and smart city concepts—[the] reasons for the power being cut will move beyond just being bill-related but conduct-related.

The power of energy as a social control lever is nearly limitless.

And that’s another reason why this legislative initiative is a very bad idea.


Thomas Buckley | Mises Wire

Mises Wire We heartily encourage reprints and shares of Mises Wire articles. If you wish to reproduce an article in your blog, magazine, radio show, newspaper column, classroom material, textbook, discussion group, website, or any other venue, please do so. The original publication source must be included in an appropriate place

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Guy Who Said “Trump is F**king Crazy” Tells GOP Presidential Candidates To Not Make it Personal

Granite Grok - Sun, 2023-09-10 10:30 +0000

Sorry to put a bad taste in your mouth at breakfast time, but this was cringeworthy and in need of being shared. His Excellency, NH Governor Chris Sununu. was on ProgTV again last weekend, and he had some wisdom to impart to the GOP candidates for President.



Back when Mr. Sununu was teasing a run for the Office himself, he said this.


“You know, he’s probably going to be the next president,” Sununu said of Trump, musing about his “experience,” “passion,” “sense of integrity” and the “rationale” he brought to his tweets. As the room quieted to see where he was going with this, he paused, then yelled: “Nah, I’m just kidding! He’s FUCKING CRAZY!” The ballroom roared with laughter. “ARE YOU KIDDING?! Come on. You guys are buying that? I love it … He just stresses me out so much! … I’m going to deny I ever said it.”

It didn’t stop there: “The press often will ask me if I think Donald Trump is crazy. And I’ll say it this way: I don’t think he’s so crazy that you could put him in a mental institution. But I think if he were in one, he ain’t getting out!”


He’s not running, but his experience at not running for President has taught him wisdom. Do not call Donald Trump names. And the reasoning seems obvious. Trump gives everyone nicknames. Unflattering endearments his supporters are to embrace and repeat. Doing that would be lowering yourself to his level, and if you want to win, don’t be Donald Trump.

Is that good advice?

Trump is 30-50 points ahead in most polls of Republican primary voters. The people you need to win the Republican primary? This is not to say that insults are the foundation of electability for a GOP nominee, but given the current state of America and the way the government is waging war on its people, there are things you might need.

A backbone and a record of success in that or a similar environment. The ability to understand the political double tap. An uncompromising commitment to winning the war against our government from within. I’m not sure who that person will be but we know it’s not Chris Sununu, so I’d be cautious about taking the advice of a guy whose father is about as deep a deep-state stooge as there is and didn’t fall far from the tree.



HT | Daily Wire

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Property Taxes, Constitutional Rights, and the Nashua Mayoral Race

Granite Grok - Sun, 2023-09-10 01:30 +0000

In seeking a fifth term as mayor of Nashua, Mayor Donchess cites the city’s rankings as one of the best-managed and most livable cities in America, as well as its highest-possible municipal bond rating. These are real achievements that benefit us all, and it’s right that the mayor should take a bow for his part in them.

We want to thank Mark Johnson for this Contribution – Please direct yours to
You can review our ‘Op-Ed Guidelines‘ on the FAQ Page.

I’m grateful for these significant milestones, and I applaud the mayor and others who have worked for them.

Elections are about the future, and there can be no mistake that this election will impact what it means to live in Nashua for years to come. Several major issues are on the table in Tuesday’s primary – Main Street congestion, commuter rail costs, and rising residential property taxes. But no issue trumps that of the constitutional rights of citizens.

The City has recently been rebuked in two court decisions in its Right To Know (RTK) battle against a very determined citizen who seeks to review the City’s property tax assessing standards and how they are applied. New Hampshire’s RTK Law, RSA 91-A, is embedded in the state’s constitution [Bill of Rights, Article 8]. A citizen’s constitutional rights are not dependent upon their individual priorities, politics, or personalities. The right of all citizens to access public records is carved in granite and must be respected.

Some see Laurie Ortolano as a champion for taxpayers. Others see her as a boat rocker. In the end, it does not matter – her constitutional rights are the same as yours and mine. The City has spent tens of thousands of tax dollars in its effort to avoid complying with Laurie Ortolano’s lawful RTK requests. The City’s stonewalling left her little choice but to take her case to the Superior Court, where, against the odds, she fought City Hall and won.

The prudent thing for the City to have done at that point would have been to fold up its tent and turn over the records. In so doing, the City could have shown it has nothing to hide. Instead, the City – not Laurie Ortolano – chose to take the case to the state Supreme Court. Again, Laurie Ortolano prevailed over the City, its four-term mayor, and their legal team. Without even the benefit of an attorney present in court to make her case, Laurie Ortolano was fully vindicated in a 5-0 ruling. The Supreme Court even urged remedial RTK instruction for City Hall staff.

Still, the last word was yet to come. In the recent mayoral debate, the mayor offered voters the very same excuse the City had argued unsuccessfully in court – that City Hall is simply too busy with routine tasks to uphold a citizen’s constitutional rights. The Supreme Court explicitly and unanimously rejected this specious argument after hearing testimony from multiple City employees, but it’s still the mayor’s position as he seeks a fifth term. There is no credibility to the argument that complying with Laurie Ortolano’s RTK request would be too time-consuming, while the City found time to fight the matter in court twice. The City owes Laurie Ortolano an apology and the documents and records she requested months ago not more excuses.

I have spoken up when the mayor has been blamed for “allowing” cars illegally parked on private property downtown to be towed to Pepperell, a hot topic on social media. I have pointed out that the mayor has no authority over the maintenance of the Main St. railroad tracks. I’ve discussed that despite costly construction projects, the single largest driver in the recent residential property tax spike was the historic rise in residential property values compared with commercial property values, not anything the mayor did or failed to do. Due to the bond rating and quality of life rankings, I held a mostly favorable toward the current administration and was an undecided voter in the mayoral race prior to the Superior Court ruling on the RTK case.

Every municipal official in the state takes an oath to uphold the N.H. Constitution. The Supreme Court found that the current administration, led by a mayor with 16 years in office, violated a citizen’s rights. Every Nashua voter needs to ask why the City is unwilling to disclose records related to spending and taxes. For these reasons and more, I urge a vote for a highly qualified candidate, Mike Soucy, on Tuesday, Sept. 12 to restore trust in City Hall.


Mark Johnson is a 24-year New Hampshire resident, including the last nine years in Ward 4, Nashua. He previously held municipal office in Hollis, including zoning board, budget committee, highway safety, historic district, and was twice elected to the Board of Selectmen, Assessors, and Overseers of the Poor (Chair, 2006-08).

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Let’s Examine Some REAL Crimes Committed by Presidents

Granite Grok - Sun, 2023-09-10 00:00 +0000

Former president Donald Trump is facing ninety-one criminal charges as he seeks to win back the White House in 2024. The indictments are the latest battle in a roughly six-year crusade against Trump that first sought to remove him from power through the Twenty-Fifth Amendment, then with espionage charges and impeachments, and that now aims to block him from becoming president again.


The mantra we hear from those in politics and media who support these efforts is that nobody is above the law.

But there’s an entire class of people above the law. Or who at least act like they’re above the law—the political class. The hypocrisies of their effort to convict Trump and block him from holding office again reveal that the motivations are purely political—not born of some commitment to a higher moral or legal principle.

Two broad schools of thought make up Western legal philosophy. They are natural law theory and legal positivism. Natural law theory says that law exists regardless of the dictates of states. That justice is derived from nature and common to all humans. Simply put, natural law theorists argue that a crime is a crime regardless of what the state says. That makes killing another human with malice aforethought murder, for example, even when it’s done with the blessings of government officials.

Many libertarians, such as Murray Rothbard, ground their moral opposition to state power in appeals to natural law. There is no special status that someone can attain that allows them to commit crimes.

The idea that nobody, not even the president, is above the law is right in line with this view. But, taken to its logical Rothbardian conclusion, equality under the law is a denial of political authority. So, it’s bizarre to hear the political class use this slogan as a rallying cry when all their wealth, power, and status is built on political privilege. And they can’t rightfully go after Trump for how he used his political authority because that’s not unique to Trump.

The political class prefers legal positivism, which separates law from morality. According to legal positivists, law is what the sovereign political authority says it is. There may be just laws and unjust laws. But they are all valid laws in this view. Legal positivism enshrines the political class’s privileged legal status above the rest of us.

Therefore, the way to get Trump is not to show he did anything immoral or wrong but to prove he technically broke some rule made up by members of an earlier political class. That way he can be driven out of public life without threatening the regime’s authority. But the problem hasn’t been finding crimes committed by Trump but finding crimes unique to Trump. Because all recent presidents have broken the law.

President George H. W. Bush launched a war on Iraq without congressional authorization. That is illegal according to Article 1, Section 8, Clause 11 of the Constitution, the set of rules Bush swore an oath to uphold. President Bill Clinton did the same, overseeing illegal military operations in Somalia, Serbia, and Iraq.

President George W. Bush conducted warrantless surveillance on American citizens, which is illegal according to the Fourth Amendment, and committed torture, which is prohibited by Section 2340A of Title 18 of the United States Code. His administration also launched undeclared, and therefore illegal, wars in Afghanistan, Somalia, and Iraq.

President Barack Obama conducted more illegal wars in Libya, Syria, Pakistan, Mali, and Yemen. In many of those wars, Obama expanded George W. Bush’s policy of giving support to al-Qaeda, which is treason according to Article 3, Section 3 of the Constitution. Obama also ordered the assassination of an American citizen in Yemen who had not been tried or even convicted of a crime. The Sixth Amendment makes that illegal.

Combined, these illegal wars have killed millions of people. They are appalling crimes of which Trump is also guilty. His administration continued the wars in Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia, and Yemen despite his running on a more isolationist foreign policy. Yet he’s not being charged for any of that. The crimes he’s facing charges for are far less serious, but they are more unique to Trump.

In New York, Trump is charged with mislabeling some business expenses during the 2016 election. In Georgia, he’s charged with conspiring to overturn an election prosecutors claim he knew he’d lost. Federally, he’s charged with claiming to have won an election he allegedly knew he’d lost, which prosecutors say incited the riot at the Capitol on January 6, 2021. He’s also charged with keeping classified documents after leaving office and conducting a “scheme to conceal” them from the federal government.

By refusing to bring charges against Trump that could also be brought against the presidents they like, the political class has shown that its aims are political. If they were committed to the rules that they swore an oath to uphold, they’d have to indict many of their own. And if they genuinely believed that nobody exists above the law, they’d have to give up a whole lot more.


Connor O’Keeffe | Mises Wire

Connor O’Keeffe produces media and content at the Mises Institute. He has a masters in economics and a bachelors in geology.

Mises Wire We heartily encourage reprints and shares of Mises Wire articles. If you wish to reproduce an article in your blog, magazine, radio show, newspaper column, classroom material, textbook, discussion group, website, or any other venue, please do so. The original publication source must be included in an appropriate place

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Jury Of Your Jeers: Oh, Peers

Granite Grok - Sat, 2023-09-09 22:30 +0000

The actions of the District Attorney and the Grand Jury in Fulton County, Georgia, should alarm every citizen in this country. This Grand Jury convened in 2022 to investigate any criminal activity involving the 2020 Presidential election. The Jury finalized its report in December 2022.

The District Attorney did not act on the recommendations until recently when the DA indicted Former President Donald Trump and 17 staff members and associates. The Grand Jury also recommended charges against Senators Graham and Perdue. This runaway jury was motivated to recommend charges against as many people as possible. This Jury was drunk on power, and District Attorney Willis is using this Jury to indict Trump and members of his staff to influence the upcoming 2024 Presidential Election. That may seem like a rash statement or assumption, but the proof is in her actions and scheduling of trials to coincide with the scheduled Republican Convention and Primaries. These trials would take Donald Trump away from these critical events as he runs for President of the United States.

I have not served on a Grand Jury but was called to Jury Duty for a month at the Massachusetts State Supreme Court and served as a jury member on three trials. I enjoyed the experience, but it was an eye-opening event and an excellent study of human nature. You would expect to be among various personality types and political-leaning individuals, and you would not be disappointed. The disappointment came in the level of seriousness that the members had. Some took their role seriously, paid attention to the testimony, weighed the evidence, and debated their stance. Others were there strictly against their will, did not take the procedure seriously, and voted with no conviction. This would not be my choice of a jury of my peers, and I fear this is what we saw in Georgia.

Fulton County, Georgia, is a predominantly Democrat area of Georgia and voted overwhelmingly for Joe Biden. They are not just for Joe Biden, but they despise Donald Trump. With their newfound power as members of a Grand Jury, they saw and seized an opportunity to harm the Former President. The like-minded DA is using this Jury to make a name for herself on the National level. A District Attorney should be as blind as Lady Liberty, but in this case, DA Willis is far from blind. She is opportunistic in filing the indictments but will overplay her hand should she pursue charges against United States Senators. She may trade her perception of power into the reality of embarrassment in front of the Supreme Court, which will not take lightly the weaponization of the Court against a Former President and sitting Senators.

Our Judicial system is the envy of the Free World, but like much of Government, the system is broken. It does not need to be dismantled, but it does require repair, and it could start with a better relationship between the DA and Jury. The role of the DA is not to manipulate the Jury, but they do need to guide and educate the Jury on the law and their role. Unfortunately, being unbiased in today’s Justice Department at every level is nearly impossible, which makes anyone’s fate in a Jury Trial a crap shoot and not one of blind justice.

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire is Hosting a Big Event this October And We Want Your Input!

Granite Grok - Sat, 2023-09-09 21:00 +0000 is organizing an event with musicians, a few high-profile speakers, and maybe even a comedian. So, it will not be a conventional “political event,” and why would it? This is GraniteGrok!

But yes, we will discuss politics, as will many of our speakers (between the music, guests, and – maybe – the comedian). It’s a pretty big deal (we think) with a lot of moving parts, and we have three requests from our readers out of the gate.

  • Save the date: Saturday, Oct—28th from 1-4 pm at the Londonderry Fish and Game Club.
  • Please get tickets when they are available and attend!
  • Please help us give this event a name.

We’re accepting suggestions from now until Monday night, and if we choose yours, you will get two free tickets to the event you helped us name, and there is no limit to the number of suggestions you can provide. If you plan on sending in more than one, please send them together if you can, but all submissions will be considered.

Skip, Mike Rogers, myself, and a handful of folks helping to line up speakers and entertainment will pick a winning name and announce it here on Tuesday evening. The winning event name will be used in all the promotional materials for the event, and winners can even remain anonymous if they think they must. You’ll get your tickets and get to keep your anonymity.

Please submit suggestions below in the comments or email them to me at

I will give you one hint at a direction when pondering your submission. I have, for nearly as long as I’ve been at this, wanted to do an event in Groktober.

Good Luck!


Reminder: If – at any time – you’d like to give or give more, start or increase a subscription, you can use the GiveSendGo campaign page (no fees) or donate through the website (PayPal). We also accept checks; you can email me for the address if this is your preferred method for donation.



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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Are $6 Per Gallon Gas Prices Coming to Vermont?

Granite Grok - Sat, 2023-09-09 19:30 +0000

It so happens I am in Seattle, Washington, this week helping my son settle into a new living/job situation, and one of the first things you notice when driving around this city is how absurdly expensive gasoline is.

$5.30 per gallon of regular as opposed to the national average of $3.80 – a $1.50 difference, according to AAA. What I see with my own eyes is closer to $5.50.

That’s $88 to fill a sixteen-gallon tank. It’s the highest cost for gas in the nation, vying with California for that dubious distinction. But, if our policymakers in Montpelier have their way, California and Washington will soon have another competitor in that race: Vermont.

The reason for Washington’s astronomical prices at the pump is the passage in 2021 of a “cap and trade” program (aka a Carbon Tax), forcing certain businesses that generate greenhouse gas emissions (according to the state website: “business types include (but are not limited to) fuel suppliers, natural gas and electric utilities…”) to purchase carbon allowances in order to sell their product to consumers. This is much like the one our legislature just passed for home heating fuel (S.5) and just like the one the Vermont Climate Council is urging on our little state for motor fuels such as gas and diesel.

Washington’s carbon tax went into effect in January of this year. The first quarterly auction of “carbon credits” took place on February 28, and since then, its impact on per-gallon gas and diesel prices is estimated at somewhere between 41 and 55 cents — and steadily rising. It will be interesting to see what happens to home heating fuel prices when that market gears up as cold weather sets in. Some here are already raising that alarm.

Like Vermont, Washington lawmakers passed their own version of our Global Warming Solutions Act (theirs is called the “Climate Commitment Act”), mandating greenhouse gas reduction with targets starting in 2035 and reaching “net zero” by 2050. And, like Vermont, they did so under a smokescreen of misinformation and outright lies about what the program would do. The big lie – just as we’ve been hearing here in Vermont about the Clean Heat Standard carbon tax on home heating fuels – is that the cost increases resulting would only amount to “pennies.” That’s a clever spin, I guess, as there’s no limit to the number of pennies they’re really talking about.

But that’s not the only complaint. As a story in Climate Wire summarizes, “[A]nger is rising among other groups, including some that had supported passage of the climate law, which say Democratic officials did not prepare the public for the costs.” That’s a nice way of saying the politicians deceived the public about the policy in order to pass it.

Among those aggrieved are Native American tribes who say the high prices are regressive and thus disproportionately hurting the poor. The farming and fishing communities claim that even though fuel for their industries was exempt from the law, obligated fuel dealers are adding the cost of the credits onto their bills anyway. The fuel dealers counterclaim that the onerous $10,000 per day fine for selling un-credited fuel is so onerous, coupled with the complicated nature of selling fuel to customers for whom you can’t ultimately know what they use the fuel for, means dealers can’t afford to make a mistake about who they charge and who they don’t. Vermont farmers and foresters should take note of this when similar promises are made to them by our own politicians and activists.

The impact of all this on Washington State residents’ cost of living and quality of life doesn’t look pleasant. Again in reference to that Climate Wire article, “The Department of Ecology recently drew criticism after quietly editing its webpage describing the climate law’s impacts: First, it said the program was expected to affect Washington’s gas prices by 1 to 3 percent; it was changed to say the department expects an impact of 1 to 3 percent on the entire state economy (emphasis added).

Oops. Not an insignificant typo there! Conveniently corrected after the law passed, of course. Vermonters can expect similar oopsie “typo” corrections when our Clean Heat Standard goes into full effect. But we can learn from Washington and avoid a carbon tax on gasoline. Our legislature hasn’t done it yet. Let’s make sure they cross it off their wish list.


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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

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