The Manchester Free Press

Friday • July 1 • 2022

Vol.XIV • No.XXVI

Manchester, N.H.

Syndicate content Granite Grok
Dominating the Political Bandwidth in New Hampshire
Updated: 4 min 34 sec ago

War Deserves a Full-Time President

Sat, 2022-02-26 16:00 +0000

The images tell the story. Ukrainian President Zelenskyy is working round the clock to rally his people and support worldwide to save his country.

Pan to the White House and the shot of the backs of Joe Biden and the First Lady boarding Marine 1 for their weekend in Delaware. The symbolism of seeing the back of our President should not be lost on the world. President Biden has been too little and too late since Day 1 of the Russian assault on Ukraine.

The message on sanctions has been very inconsistent from Vice President Harris, the State Department, the Pentagon, Jen Psaki, and finally, the President. Harris tells Europe that these are the most crippling sanctions ever used to deter Russian aggression. The President tells a different story claiming we need to show resolve as these sanctions may take thirty days to deliver an impact. Mr. President, the people of Ukraine, do not have thirty days.

We felt that the President would learn from the Afghanistan debacle, but it is painfully apparent that did not happen. For months, we have known that Russia was getting equipment and troops in position around Ukraine. Biden didn’t pull the trigger on sanctions. He couldn’t find the gun. The relationship between the Bidens, both Joe and Hunter, and Moscow has to be examined. There has to be a reason Biden is slow to act other than his total incompetence. We deserve to know the facts behind the Biden Cartel.

We are sending aid to Ukraine in hand-held and some anti-tank weapons. This action is tantamount to handing David another pebble. The Russians are coming with tanks, air support, guided missiles, Special Forces, and the Ukrainians have men, women, and children carrying rifles. The Ukrainian people have big hearts, but they are outnumbered and outmatched.

The longer this conflict goes, the more casualties to be buried in the soil of their homeland. The story of the older woman who confronted a Russian soldier shows the courage of these proud people. She cursed him for what he was doing and told him she was not afraid to die to save her home. She also said her pockets were filled with sunflower seeds so flowers would grow from the ground where her body is buried. The Russians have underestimated the fight in the Ukraine people

It is not so much that Biden has turned his back on Ukraine. He is not capable of governing or leading America through a crisis. He is not competent. His VP is a failure at every task she has faced. His staff was built to be Woke, not qualified. Elections have consequences, but so does leadership. Biden has done nothing to make America or Americans stronger from day one of his administration. He has done more to appease the Radical Left and their Green Theory and Critical Race Theory than to unite this country and pull us out of the Pandemic. He has failed America, but it is America that will pay the price for Biden’s actions for generations.

This article is not Biden Bashing but truth-telling. The facts are clear, and the failures of this administration in one year are enough to put Carter on Mount Rushmore. It is not enough to point out the shortcomings of Washington. We need to act, and the Convention of States and Article V will be a start. I ask you to follow my blog as I highlight COS and the people’s movement to regain control of government and our lives. It is good to stop being a spectator and be a part of the solution. You can have that feeling, too. Click here to sign the Petition and to volunteer to help COS: https://conventionofstates.com/

 

Ray Cardello writes at GraniteGrok and The Liberty Loft.com

The post War Deserves a Full-Time President appeared first on Granite Grok.

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Joe Biden in 2019 – Imagine What Could Happen in Ukraine if Trump is President

Sat, 2022-02-26 14:30 +0000

The internet machine is the gift that keeps on giving. Take this little bit put together in the Twitterverse about his majestic awesomeness Joe Biden. It’s 2019. Basement Joe stepped out to say he is concerned. If Trump is re-elected horrible things will happen…in Ukraine.

Go Joe!

 

 

Here’s a local copy is Twitter gets hinky with the original.

The post Joe Biden in 2019 – Imagine What Could Happen in Ukraine if Trump is President appeared first on Granite Grok.

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Middle School ‘Student’ Paper Offers Tips on Protesting with BLM

Sat, 2022-02-26 13:00 +0000

Nothing is surprising about a school “newspaper” promoting political activism with a leftist cause. But the school and district are pretending to be advocates for free speech. How much do you want to bet that’s a load of crap?

From the top, “The Feb. 15 issue of the Rhino Report, a student newspaper at Justice Page Middle School, featured a front-page article from a student titled, “Protest Tips and Etiquette.”

A 22-year old was shot and killed, and the locals are riled up. If you are twelve and want to march in the street with Marxists, you’ll need some advice. Like, wearing non-descript clothing, having eye protection in case of tear gas, and if you’re white, no one wants to hear what you have to say. Your a bit player, extra, support role. A token white, if you like.

 

“When it comes to Black Lives Matter protests, if you’re not Black, remember that you’re there to show your support and amplify Black voices,” the first tip read. “ESPECIALLY if you’re White, if they’re offering the megaphone for anyone to speak, it’s not for you. You are here to listen and to show support.”

 

And that’s all well and good. Democrats like silent tokens regardless of color. Learning to shut your mouth is a party favorite, especially if you’ve got a gripe about the Left’s priorities. So, this made me laugh.

 

“At Minneapolis Public Schools, we value and encourage student voice,” the district said. “The Rhino Report newsletter is a student publication that was written by students in an after school community education program. The publication represents the viewpoints of students, very similar to an editorial written for a newspaper.”

 

Did you get that? And hey, we love free speech. But does anyone think there’s a shortage of voices from the center-right in this student publication?

I can tell you without looking. Daring to have a viewpoint outside the totalitarian Left, published or whispered, would be met with the legal definition of bullying. Only, much like speech, it’s not bullying, assault, or intimidation, if a Leftist uses any means at their disposal to suppress it.

Silence is violence (not using the proper compelled speech is unacceptable). And violence to create silence (preventing speech with which they disagree) is the flip side of their despotic coin.

And that includes the choices of faculty advisors to student newspapers.

 

 

 

The post Middle School ‘Student’ Paper Offers Tips on Protesting with BLM appeared first on Granite Grok.

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Choice between Equality and Equity Dramatically Affects Our Freedom

Sat, 2022-02-26 11:30 +0000

President Joe Biden announced he will only consider a Black woman to replace Stephen Breyer on the Supreme Court. On its face the decision is racist. There is no way to rationalize racism. The announcement has generated widespread disapproval, as it should.

This is an attempt to use the nomination to achieve “equity” instead of “equality.” It feels wrong. It is wrong. In a justice system operating according to the principle of “equity,” people are not treated as individuals. Rather, they are treated as unequal groups. They are subject to the whims of judges who choose to restrain or promote groups.

There is no justice when equality is lost because there is no fairness, no yardstick of equal treatment.

With Biden’s announcement the very idea of the “rule of law” is being challenged. This is an attack never before seen in America. Biden’s nomination to replace Justice Breyer shows Americans how the choice between equality and equity dramatically affects our freedom.

We want to thank Marc Abear for this Op-Ed. If you have an Op-Ed or LTE
you would like us to consider, please submit it to Editor@GraniteGrok.com.

About three-quarters of Americans disagree with President Biden’s decision to nominate based on race. A majority of Democrats say he should consider all possible nominees. But, Biden’s making good on a campaign promise. When his presidential bid was in trouble James Clyburn urged him to make this campaign promise. He did so during the candidates’ Charleston debate. Clyburn endorsed him; Biden won the South Carolina primary and the rest is history.

Biden’s approach to the Breyer replacement has this quid pro quo origin. It also reflects an intensely political Leftist view of the judiciary. Biden said he would appoint a Black woman “to make sure we, in fact, get everyone represented” on the Supreme Court.

What do you believe? Should the courts look like the country they serve? When Americans go to court, they should trust those who render judgment. Do we want a judge to render their decisions based on the law as written? Or do we want them to render their decisions based on the ability to understand each litigant’s lived experience and apply the law equitably? What about the victim’s lived experience?

The current oath of office requires federal judges to administer justice “without respect to persons, and do equal right to the poor and to the rich” and discharge their judicial duties “impartially.” The Constitution guarantees the “equal protection of the laws,” and the same principle is literally chiseled in stone on the Supreme Court building: Equal Justice Under Law.

There’s a big difference between equality and equity. Equality means treating people as equal individuals. Equity means treating people as members of unequal groups. Equitable treatment means we all, victim and perpetrator alike, end up in the same place. Think about that.

In an equitable judicial system this means judges use whatever criteria or standards they wish to identify who we are and what the same place is. Judges choose the result they want. Then they find a way to make it happen, whether the law allows them to do so or not. What’s fair about that?

The post Choice between Equality and Equity Dramatically Affects Our Freedom appeared first on Granite Grok.

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Putin’s Panzers Are Racing Onward, Our Sanctions Not Slowing Them a Bit

Sat, 2022-02-26 02:30 +0000

“Vladimir Putin doesn’t want me to be President. He doesn’t want me to be our nominee. If you’re wondering why — it’s because I’m the only person in this field who’s ever gone ‘toe-to-toe’ with him.”

— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) February 21, 2020

This inane comment from Joe “King Kong” Biden reminds me of Slim Pickens removing his flying helmet, donning his cowboy hat, and announcing:

“Well boys, this is it.  Nuclear combat toe to toe with the Russkies,” from Dr. Strangelove, directed by Stanley Kubrick in 1964, a superb movie presaging our possible war with Russia using our B-52H’s.

Recently, after meeting with European leaders, Vice President Harris told the assembled media,

“I mean, listen, guys (attempting to sound tough in a George Raft kinda way, I surmise), we’re talking about the potential for war in Europe. I mean, let’s really take a moment to understand the significance of what we’re talking about.”

Sure, let’s do that, Kamala.

The steely glint in Kamala’s eyes, hard set above her wizened face, indicated the newfound fervor for war of one recently initiated into its bellicose calling.

The statements from Vice President Harris simply appeared to be more posturing and fear-mongering meant to gin up hysterics on behalf of our allies while she’s trying to cow Vladimir Putin who, it is reported, wrestles bears on his time away from ticking off names to be rubbed out.  It appears, at least until all the facts are in, that Putin is by no means cowed by the Biden team’s semi-modified tough talk and is having the time of his life while our allies are scared to death – not of Putin, of course, but of Kamala.

President Biden and Vice President Harris have been more than happy to drone on interminably about the possibility of another European war which allows them to pull a great big horse blanket over their crippling domestic failings in our ports, the skyrocketing cost of home goods and gasoline, the empty supermarket shelves and inflation climbing to heights last viewed during those glorious Jimmy “Mr. Peanut” Carter years of malaise.  Biden’s inflation has been tracked to altitudes where the economic genius Lawrence Kudlow is said to be using the radio telescope at Jodrell Bank to chart it.

We want to thank John Burtis for this Op-Ed. If you have an Op-Ed or LTE
you would like us to consider, please submit it to Editor@GraniteGrok.com.

Falling in line to support the Biden Administration, the deft economist Paul Krugman of the far left NY Times recently scribbled on Twitter:

“But really, everything we’ve seen so far is pretty much in line with a benign scenario.”  Benign, of course, unless you have a family, work, and need a car to get there while heating a home and feeding your bairns.

Then, moving back to the sad reality repeated in Munich and the sad dumfounded Ukrainian leader who is gamely trying to keep up with “Blue Collar” Joe’s quips, “If Russia pursues its plans, it will be responsible for a catastrophic and needless war of choice,” according to the NY Post, and Kamala’s calls for war, where “…we’re talking about the potential for war in Europe!”

“So, you’re telling me that it’s 100 percent that the war will start in a couple of days. Then what [are you] waiting for?” President Zelensky of Ukraine asked Kamala Harris? “We don’t need your sanctions after the bombardment will happen, and after our country will be fired at or after we will have no borders or after we will have no economy or parts of our country will be occupied or lie in ruins,” the Patriot Retort told us.

But Harris indicated the Biden administration would not level sanctions before Putin acted to trigger them.

“We’re gonna take this one moment at a time in terms of what might need to happen in the future in terms of escalation,” she added archly.

She again warned Russia about the size and scope of the prepared sanctions such as freezing the assets of the pitiable few oligarchs who have money in NYC banks while taking a pass on all those who have their dough in Bermudian and Bahamian depositories.

“When we look at the significance of these sanctions, they are immense,” she said.  Yes, immense to the individual depositors, or “guys” in Harris patois, maybe, but not to Russia as a whole.

Harris also warned that the United States would likely suffer higher costs for energy if they had to level sanctions on Russia because Biden has taken the US from an oil-exporting nation to one relying on the good graces of OPEC and the very country Kamala is threatening to lean on, Russia, which supplies oil to us, too.

“We are aware that again when America stands for principles, and all of the things that we hold dear, it requires sometimes for us to put ourselves out there in a way that maybe we will perhaps incur some cost and in this situation,” she said curiously. “That may relate to energy costs.”  Indeed it may to your constituents, you fool!

But, hold on, not so fast.  Now we learn that “…every day, Joe Biden buys 500,000 barrels of oil from Russia. Now how in the hell can you put sanctions on somebody, and you’re buying stuff from him? We bought 232 million barrels of oil from Russia in Joe Biden’s first year.

–US Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Al.)

I find it incredulous that someone so devoid of “gravitas” and common sense, namely Vice President Kamala Harris, who has yet to visit the southern US border – her initial key area of responsibility and instead traveled to Paris, not Texas but, yes, France – went to Munich where she drummed up a war panic the likes of which we haven’t seen since, “Remember the Maine!” She, quite frankly, scared hell out of President Zelensky, whom we were supposed to be calming and reassuring through our words and deeds.

So, this is our foreign policy under Biden.  Send our now thoroughly detested current VP of doobie and hip-hop fame to scare the bejesus out the leader of Ukraine, drum up war fever among our now frightened allies, and leave the possible aggressor chuckling before he invades the country we’ve told the world he would but we daren’t place any sanctions on Putin until he actually invades.  So, what’ll we do now, Joe?  Nothing, because Joe knows we need Russian oil.

Then Vladimir Putin struck on February 24th with cruise missiles, rockets, artillery and bombing runs catching the Biden Administration without that Plan B, read – with their pants down, the lack of which has escaped them in every single major caper they’ve faced – at home and abroad.

Meanwhile, amphibious landings occurred in Odessa as the Ukrainian navy was incapacitated; missile strikes exploded in Mariupol, Kyiv, Kramatorsk, and Kharkiv.

Biden and NATO?  They have called for more sanctions which will no more work than sanctions from the League of Nations slowed Mussolini’s gobbling up of Abyssinia nor would sanctions have slowed Hitler’s panzers and Stukas in Poland in September 1939 or knocked them off their record-setting race to the English Channel in May of 1940.  Did sanctions slow Saddam subsuming Kuwait?

Strongmen are never stopped by the removal of their lunch money or turning out their lights.  Bullies are only stopped by a swift belt in the mouth.  If a prolonged fight ensues, it may be messy and that is the price of maintaining freedom here and in Europe.

America either stands, clearly elucidates its position and fights if stepped on, or we need to remain home and reconsider our place in the world.  But sending a cackling VP like Kamala Harris to Munich shouting, “War!” scaring President Zelensky of Ukraine, then telling him that we won’t even impose sanctions until Russia invades, and when Putin does, we’re left scrambling, shows the world that the United States is run by fops and ninnies who don’t have the slightest grasp of international relations, power politics and dictators.

Putin’s panzers are racing onward in the night, our sanctions not slowing them a bit.

The post Putin’s Panzers Are Racing Onward, Our Sanctions Not Slowing Them a Bit appeared first on Granite Grok.

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Questions of judgment

Sat, 2022-02-26 01:00 +0000

Well Putin has done it: invaded Ukraine while our “brilliant” President Biden mumbles some incoherent babblings meaning nothing while Ukrainians die. Another century, another totalitarian despot brings war, death and suffering just as despots have always done. You would think we would learn but then I remember liberals are soooo much smarter, more moral, and more ethical than the rest of us. Sure they are! They took over education and removed the history of despots and replaced it with “social justice, transgender, critical race theory and how America is a racist nation”. All lies.

They dominate the media, condemn all those “wrong” thinking conservative radicals who want Government to follow the Constitution and Laws as written. How old school, how out of touch.

A full year of Progressive, liberal leadership and control and I can rightly see we have no leadership or control, not even over our own lives and Rights. Our economy is in shambles, our border invaded by millions, our schools are indoctrinating not educating, concerned parents are “terrorists”, elected Progressives are dictators making up laws and issuing judgements without due process, and that is only scratching the surface. Not one, not even one of the government mandates have been successful. Crimes of all description have risen dramatically all across the nation and now the world is facing reckless despots in Europe and Asia. How history repeats itself when we fail to teach and learn.

These are the judgements and practices brought to us by the Progressive “we are the moral high ground” liberals which brings up, in my mind, the saying “The road to Hell is paved with good intentions”. Now, we see exactly how and why. Do not expect anything to get better, not with those now in control of our Government (concerned only with their wealth and Power over all the rest of us). Corruption is only matched with incompetency and we have seen that, too, in abundance as they undo every good bit of sense, good business policy and practice that President Trump created. Meanwhile, the Progressive Left excused/supported BLM/Antifa “mostly peaceful” rioting, looting, burning, assaulting, murdering and anti-police and law rhetoric in Democrat controlled city after city. Then instituted all the crazy, impractical, doomed-to-fail schemes they could dream of.

Have you seen enough failure yet, Mr. & Ms. America? Is the World better now than with President Trump in charge? Are your lives safer and better? How are you going to vote in November?

Just a question of judgement?

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Friday Open Thread – So, what’s new? Whatcha doin’ about Live Free or Die?

Sat, 2022-02-26 00:15 +0000

I dryly note that the Ukraine Government just adopted a version of our Second Amendment – to defend The State against a tyrannical Govt.  Anyone can now buy a firearm.  It’s also giving, for free, arms to veterans.  Who knew that firearms are GOODNESS?  I wonder how US-based Civilian Disarmament Groups (aka, NH State Reps David Meuse and Katherine Rogers, Everytown, Brady, Giffords, et al) are taking all this?

But as always, this is your Thread – do with it as you wish (just don’t make it a plinking target!).

The post Friday Open Thread – So, what’s new? Whatcha doin’ about Live Free or Die? appeared first on Granite Grok.

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Friday Night Poll Question: Will Putin “Win” in Ukraine?

Fri, 2022-02-25 23:30 +0000

Vlad the Invader sent his tanks and guns and guns and bombs into the sovereign state of Ukraine this week. The initial incursion appeared to go well, but Russia failed to achieve its day one objectives.

The civilians in Ukraine have been armed. There are stories of a Ghost Ace flying a Mig-29 taking out Russian assets. It’s a land grab, so the whole thing will be conventional – no messy weapons. And now that Putin has pulled the trigger, it would be bad for his image to backtrack.

He has to win something because he’s already losing the PR war. So will he, can he? Can he not?

The poll runs until Sunday the 27th at 6:30 pm ET. As always, feel free to explore your own choices in the comments.

Up to three, yes three answers allowed. Just for fun.

 

Can Vladimir Putin Win in Ukraine?
  • Yes, he will take Ukraine by force.
  • Yes, but only partially - some territory seized and secured.
  • Yes, but he will have to successfully spin some sort of concession for territory in a peace agreement.
  • No, between any combination of losses, insuregency, world opinion, and sanctions Putin will have to abandon any land grab in Ukraine
  • No. Just no.
  • Can You Believe what the Global Reset Folks are Doing While were focused on Ukraine?
VoteBack to vote

 

The post Friday Night Poll Question: Will Putin “Win” in Ukraine? appeared first on Granite Grok.

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Cannon Mountain Planning to Take Millions More from Taxpayers

Fri, 2022-02-25 22:00 +0000

Cannon Mountain is at it again. They’re not just feeding at the trough, they’re licking the plate!

Cannon Mountain is the only state-owned and operated ski area in New England. Yes, even Massachusetts figured out years ago that state government shouldn’t be in the ski business!

Cannon has a fairly simple business model: Take millions for taxpayers, buy fanatical political support with free and discounted skiing, and keep the local liberals happy (to that point, Cannon is one of the last ski areas in the Northeast still policing face masks!).

Over the years, Cannon has taken millions of dollars from the state general fund, as well as all of the money from the Mt. Sunapee lease (you know, the millions of dollars that were supposed to address deferred maintenance across the park system?).

We want to thank Rick Henry for this Op-Ed.
Please direct yours to Editor@GraniteGrok.com.

Simply put, Cannon cannot exist without huge taxpayer subsidies. Yet, Cannon’s state management claims it is a “self-funded, self-managed, state-owned success story.”

Hold onto your wallet, they’re coming for more!

Cannon is now looking for up to $30 million to overhaul or replace its aerial tramway. Yes, $30 million for the lift that operates two days a week during ski season. Yes, $30 million for the lift that is so critical that it can be closed for the better part of two years for construction. Yes, $30 million for the lift that packs people like sardines into a small enclosed space (remember when social distancing was a thing?), yet has the lowest uphill capacity of any major lift around. And no, there’s not a chance the project will go over budget.

At the public comment session last week (No mask? You can’t attend!), locals gave unanimous support for the project. After all, it’s somebody else’s money!

You can submit your comments by March 1 to nhparks@dncr.nh.gov. You can let your legislators know too!

 

 

The post Cannon Mountain Planning to Take Millions More from Taxpayers appeared first on Granite Grok.

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Joe’s Bottomless “Box” of Disposable “Tools”

Fri, 2022-02-25 20:30 +0000

Barry Obama liked to talk about “From Day One.” It reminded me of the Amazon Prime take on The Man in the High Castle. The NWO in Nazi-Controlled America was Day One. And, not-so-strange coincidence, Joe Biden’s been a train wreck from Day One.

But like any good Democrat (They Destroy Everything They Touch), he’s always prepared to “use every tool at his disposal” to achieve some correction that could have been avoided if almost anyone else were president.

Resignation is not, apparently, one of the tools in Joe’s box, but only because Kamal would be exponentially worse than Joe, and that’s the trap in which we’re stuck.

Take Oil prices. Now that Russia is warring with Ukraine, we’ll probably have to stop funding Putin’s war machine and no more buying Kremlin Oil, at least for the duration. But worry not, Biden has promised to use every tool at his disposal to limit price hikes (on oil and gas).

 

 

As a reminder, laughing out loud might be a sign of treason, and this may not be the most disingenuous thing a president has been asked to read as if he believes it, but it’s close.

Biden went to war on the US economy and oil and gas in one breath by taking most of the tools that kept oil and gas prices low by banning as much domestic production as he has. If he were serious, he’s have already undone those deeds, but that’s not happening.

He can’t. The activist Tsars and Tsarinas who make his policies (the disposable tools) can’t fathom the possibility, no matter how much it costs YOU!

 

That hockey stick will only worsen, and Biden’s solution is to ask OPEC to increase production, which they are not required to do, and he can’t blame them.

But he can look weaker, and he will.

 

HT | Headline inspired by Greg Raven at the RCSB

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Please, Let’s Not Play It Again Uncle Sam.

Fri, 2022-02-25 19:00 +0000

Russia invades Ukraine and every politician and talking head is now shouting “Democracy is at stake” so, let’s look at our track record for going to war to “Save Democracy.”

Vietnam: Thousands killed, countless wounded.
Result: Death and Destruction – No democracy

Iraq: Thousands killed, countless wounded.
Result: Death and Destruction – No democracy

Afghanistan: Thousands killed, countless wounded.
Result: Death and Destruction – No democracy

This faux outrage from our political leaders is meant to redirect our intention away from their failures. The truth is that their feckless leadership and impotent foreign policy are the reasons this invasion is taking place.

Weakness invites war, and this administration is pathetically weak. This president and congress have turned a blind eye as millions of unvetted foreigners have invaded our country this past year.

Not a single politician or media minion ever uttered “Democracy is at stake” during this ongoing invasion. They’ve also given us a skyrocketing national debt, out-of-control inflation and record-breaking food and gas prices, all in a year.

Don’t forget the historically high crime and murder rates throughout the country, while they protect criminals and ignore victims.

Our department of injustice is not blind, they prosecute based on politics, meting out punishment, instead of equal justice.

The people don’t want any of the things you’ve given them.

That is the unvarnished state of our union.

Americans don’t want to get involved in a war between Russia and Ukraine.

Merriam-Webster dictionary defines democracy as “government by the people”.

Over the last year, our elected leaders have acted more like autocrats in a totalitarian government, instead of representatives serving the people.

Yes, the politicians and the media who are shouting “Democracy is at stake”, are correct.

Unfortunately, they got the country wrong.

Democracy certainly is at stake, right here in America.

Every American should be outraged that our leadership wants to get us involved in another foreign war for “Democracy”.

When Hunter Biden, Paul Pelosi, and at least one immediate family member of every member of congress signs up to fight Russia, then we can send troops to defend Ukraine

Until then, please, let’s not Play it again Uncle Sam.

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

The Ghost of Kyiv

Fri, 2022-02-25 17:30 +0000

Wars seek rallying points, heroes, inspiration, and one day (more or less) into the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the defenders have one. They call him The Ghost of Kyiv.

 

No one knows his name, but he is already a legend, at least on the internet. In only a few hours- according to social media, he defiantly took to the skies over Ukraine in his trusty MiG-29 and waged a one-man onslaught against the marauding Russian Air Forces.

According to Twitter and Reddit, the mystery mega-ace now called “The Ghost of Kyiv” singlehandedly shot down “six Russian aircraft” to achieve ace-in-a-day status. According to internet claims, the Ghost of Kiev chalked up six air-to-air kills with no less than two Russian Sukhoi Su-35s, a Russian Su-27 Flanker, a Russian MiG-29 and two Russian Su-25 ground attack aircraft allegedly “shot down”. And he’s still fighting, at least according to the internet.

 

There is no actual confirmation that any of this is accurate, and you can’t trust Russia to admit they lost six aircraft in one day, and maybe not Ukraine either. And who exactly is this for, and where is the information being shared? And does any of that matter?

It does!

Russia is looking for a quick demoralizing victory, but early reports suggest Ukraine has no interest in giving Putin anything like that. A rallying point like The Ghost of Kyiv – real or not – will only make it more difficult for Russia to get their incursion off the front page sooner.

And while this is Russia and Putin, I think they’d prefer that.

Obama gave up on Crimea before it happened, and no one seems to care much about that anymore. Putin just took it over, and a few stern words from foreign leaders later it’s part of Russia.

Idiot Biden will say some stuff and play at sanctions, but he’s been funding Putin’s war effort for more than a year and will gladly applaud an end to hostilities whether that is because Ukraine lost, surrendered, or repelled the effort.

Look, Joe, Peace talks make for better headlines than how you a**-raped the American economy.

My mistake, this is all Trump’s doing which means Joe is so incompetent he can’t even prevent the alleged machinations of a guy the left labeled as a fool and a boob, so what does that make you?

Sorry, no questions, we have to plan that new pandemic before the November Elections because we have to protect Democracy. As if Democrats’ ideas on free elections, pandemic policy, and Democracy are dissimilar on paper to what Putin is trying to do to Ukraine. Or in practice.

Oh, one more thing that matters. Russians are not all-in either.

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Woe Canada!

Fri, 2022-02-25 16:00 +0000

I closed our TD Bank account today, I took a stand to make them pay. …

Canadian truckers drove for freedom

Tyrant Trudeau just had to knee ‘em

He sicced the cops, he had them mangled

He stole their gas, their money strangled

Toronto Dominion jumped in with glee

“Froze” trucker funds—no court decree!

TD should have sat it out

But they had to show their clout

So I closed our bank account

It wasn’t such a huge amount

But I’m stickin’ with the truckers

And stickin’ it to the TD fu****s

 

We want to thank Frances Erlebacher for this Content.
Please direct yours to Editor@GraniteGrok.com.

 

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

When Did War Become a Made for TV Event?

Fri, 2022-02-25 14:30 +0000

The developing invasion of Ukraine by the Russian military has kept TV personalities on the edge of their seats for weeks. Will he invade today, will he invade tomorrow, nobody knows, but they are all speculating 24/7. Nobody knows what Vladimir Putin will do except Putin, and he is so erratic that he may not know.

The coverage is tantamount to the full day of pregame shows running up to the Super Bowl. The Russians will be wearing their visitor green uniforms, and the Ukrainian team will be in their home black colors. Ukraine will be defending its Eastern border, and Russia has opted to kick. Please stop it. This is war, and this is real. People will die, and the countryside will be destroyed. This is not a game. There are no cheerleaders or sideline reporters Well, okay, there are plenty of sideline reporters.

This storyline is driven by the White House, State Department, and the Pentagon. To the Administration, this conflict is a welcome distraction, and the Administration is hoping this story will stop the slide in the polls. How sad that the performance of the Biden Team has been so poor that they are looking at a war halfway around the world to bail them out. It will not work as they are already showing by their implementation of sanctions that they are overmatched.

During the campaign, Biden claimed that when he was in the White House, Putin would be under control and would not test the world as he is doing today. Putin is taking Biden to school. Biden is reacting and not well.

The Biden Cartel has been exposed. He and Hunter are on the take from both sides of the conflict. They have made millions from Ukraine and Russia, and these arrangements are influencing Biden’s plan to control Putin. America, Europe, and the world will suffer because the Biden’s are profiting from bogus agreements. This situation is criminal and impeachable. If the Republicans take control in November, Biden will need to hide in a place more secure than his Delaware basement.

We are not the only country that will feel the pain of the conflict in Ukraine. Europe is buying a third of its energy from Russia, as is the United States. When the sanctions hit Russia, Putin will either shut off the supply to Europe and the U.S. or raise the price through the roof. We got into bed with the devil, and it may soon be time to pay. Gas at the pumps is already up 50% from a year ago, but $5 a gallon gas may be in our immediate future. With 7% inflation and increased gas and home heating fuel, Americans’ patience will run out soon.

On Thursday, Jen Psaki had the gall to respond to $5 a gallon gas by saying we knew that standing up for our principles would cost in our pockets. What is she talking about, and why does nobody ask? Are we talking about the Left’s principles to green energy or the weakness of Biden to keep Putin in his place? Either way, these are not our principles.

Thursday morning brought the world the reality of an invasion by Putin’s troops. Ukraine was target bombed, and ground troops were marching into Ukraine on their way to Kyiv. Putin has a list of Ukraine officials to capture or kill, and he is unleashing cyberattacks on any country that is complicit with U.S. sanctions on Russia.

Putin is a mad, ruthless dictator hell-bent on taking Ukraine and damaging the world economy. We need a Reagan or Trump-like leader, but we have Biden. This country, and the world, will regret the day that 81 million voters got hoodwinked and put Joe Biden in charge of the free world.

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Colin Kaepernick’s Latest Scheme “In the Name of Justice” Barely Moves the Needle

Fri, 2022-02-25 13:00 +0000

In his latest leap for relevance, Colin Kaepernick has found a new way to spend some of that money he made in spite of all that oppression from “The Man.”

Multi-Millionaire Kaepernickus has offered to pay for a second autopsy if your loved one dies in prison or police custody.

 

The former quarterback turned activist is launching an initiative through his “Know Your Rights Camp” that will offer free autopsies to any family of someone who dies in prison or police custody that wants a secondary examination done. The goal behind the Autopsy Initiative (a truly uninspiring name) is to expose racism and potential cover ups from the prison industrial complex. A group of certified pathologists will perform the autopsies and will attempt to “eliminate any biases” in the first autopsies.

 

Start with Jeffrey Epstein, Justice Scalia, that friend of Ghislaine Maxwell, Ashli Babbitt; wait I have a list here somewhere. If those folks are too white, how about George Floyd. He killed himself with a massive Fentanyl overdose, but dying in police custody cost thousands of blacks their homes, livelihoods, and many lives, not just from the riots.

Inner-city crime is at record levels because of that nonsense, and the Left’s defund police movement, so let’s talk about justice.

And I’m not even opposed to the autopsy thing. More transparency all around is a good thing. And pathologists will happily take his money. But Kaepernickus could do a lot more good if he focused some of that 20 million he is estimated to be worth at the source of systemic racism and oppression. Democrat rule.

It takes a set to whine about the injustice of police brutality and white people in cities whose law enforcement has been managed by Democrats for half a century. The problem isn’t racism. It’s liberal supremacy. Every decline in standards of life, learning, and living on these urban plantations is a product of Prog policy.

You name it, bad schools, high crime, homelessness, unaffordable housing, poisoned drinking water, declining sanitation, poverty, pollution, and political corruption. The majority of these problems result from a handful of US cities run into the ground by Leftists.

If Kaepernickus were genuinely interested in justice, he’d be looking under the left boot, but there’s no evidence he’s that guy.

He is a guilt-ridden, increasingly radical leftist looking for someone else to blame for his good fortune.

He worked hard and achieved success. Playing the game made him wealthy and comfortable, and now he can’t stand how well off he is but being a professional asshole got him booted from his chosen profession. Now his buckets of cash come from sweat-shop multinationals like Nike, so he can afford to pretend he is interested in oppression.

We can pretend this bothers him on some level, but I doubt it. Not in any meaningful way, or he’d be facing off against the Left until they canceled him and then coming back for more. I’ve seen nothing from him to suggest he’s got that much backbone.

He likes their adoration too much to allow truth to ruin that party. So, we get an autopsy initiative, which is not a complete waste of time. There’s plenty wrong with prisons and if the system is mistreating inmates let’s expose that. But on the scale of meaningful systemic change, this barely moves the needle.

 

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Manchester Public Schools: Going From Dumb to Dumber?

Fri, 2022-02-25 11:30 +0000

As Superintendent Goldhardt exits the Manchester public schools, what can you expect? Not much!  Based on what was reported you can expect more dumbing down courtesy Manchester Proud.

Think of Manchester Proud as the community organizers paid to implement failed fads from education reformers.

Here are my concerns about Manchester Proud that I posted on social media back in 2019. Things have become much worse since the involvement of Manchester Proud in the district:

Manchester Proud has also come to the BOSC to advocate for joining the Council of Great City Schools (CGCS). During the discussion with some of the BOSC members about the $30,000.00 membership fee, Mr. Brensinger indicated that he would not consider the request by Manchester parents who want funding to go towards materials in the classroom. Instead he said this kind of significant expenditure should be used to pay a membership fee to CGCS. I understand this is an effort to design a strategic plan, but if that plan is going to revolve around unproven or disproven politically–contrived education reforms, rather than meeting the needs expressed by the parents, then this does not bode well.
CGCS is a political organization funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to “promote and coordinate successful implementation of the new common core standards in major urban public school systems nationwide ” The Gates Foundation lists CGCS as a partner on their web site. Here is a list of grants awarded to CGCS by the Gates Foundation so that they could advance their political objective: 2008 $3,735,866 2010 $ 100,000 2011. $5,446,615 2013 $ 614,954 2013 $2,000,000 2015 $1,600,017
CGCS’s political objective has a clear bias which runs counter to what scores of parents said they wanted for their children in Manchester during the debate of the Manchester Academic Standards.

Manchester Proud, Superintendent Goldhardt, Mayor Joyce Craig, and the School Board members who have allowed this catastrophe to happen under their watch should never be in charge of a school district again.

Manchester will now embark on more dumbing down measures by implementing the Competency-Based Report Card.  

“The move to competency-based learning was one of the recommendations in the 2020 Manchester Proud plan. “

What does this mean to Manchester?  Take a look at this article I wrote back in 2013: (OBE=Outcome Based Education =Competency Based Education)

OBE was implemented in New Hampshire High Schools through a grant from The Nellie Mae Foundation.  The Nellie Mae Foundation’s primary goal when offering grants to schools, is to focus on “community organizing efforts“.   As you can see on page 1, the focus is not on academic excellence but on community organizing.  Note that Saul Alinsky is referenced at the end of page one.

OBE has been criticized for in its efforts to change the attitudes, beliefs and values in students.  Parents have noted the deemphasizing of academic subject content in favor of soft-skills often times called “workforce skills”.  This has left educators trying to determine what actual content should remain in the curriculum.

How does one objectively test students on broad-based outcomes?  That too has been a concern to those using traditional grading practices.  This could be one reason that some schools in New Hampshire are removing traditional grades.

It’s difficult to grade students objectively if you are grading their attitudes, values and dispositions, so they must change the grades to something subjective. If they are grading your child’s attitude on race relations, you can’t do that objectively.

Competencies will eventually become digital badges. KnowledgeWorks is promoting SEL/ 21st Century workforce data badges (credentials) instead of diplomas. Portrait of a Graduate data badges are not “Homegrown” are not “locally developed” diplomas, they are interoperable data badges and a step toward the Learning Ledger (Silicon Valley playbook called it bitcoining education). (h/t Cheri Kiesecker)

Here you can see that Chris Andriski, Asst. Superintendent of SAU16, in conjunction with 2Revolutions, addresses a Portrait of a Graduate. Remember 2Revolutions describes every white person in New Hampshire as a White Supremacist. Manchester also teamed up with the Marxist organization to develop the Manchester district plan.

With Dr. Goldhardt leaving, the district is moving ahead with more initiatives that do nothing to help the students learn to read, write, add and subtract. They are simply following the federal fads that further dumb down public schools.

You would think at some point, someone in this school district would start talking about academic achievement and literacy. We’ve heard members of the public plead for a return to the basics. These parents told the BOSC to stop with the fads and shiny electronics and go back to math facts and grammar exercises. They were looking for leadership, not those who followed the status quo that leads to failure.

Organizations like Manchester Proud or Reaching Higher New Hampshire push the status quo, which does nothing to help your children to read and write. So why are they still involved with guiding this district?

Manchester certainly has more challenges than most school districts, but it’s no excuse for failing their students.

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

It Can’t Be a Coincidence That So Many Things Have Gone So Wrong in So Little Time – You Wanted Answers? I Got Answers!

Fri, 2022-02-25 02:30 +0000

Well, my post “It Can’t Be a Coincidence That So Many Things Have Gone So Wrong in So Little Time” went kinda viral. I’ll be honest, I had no idea that it would strike a nerve. Or, as it turned out, lots of nerves:

It can’t be a coincidence that so many things have gone so wrong in so little time. We see the Biden Administration doing a national level of what Socialist Sociologists Cloward & Piven did to New York City – setting impossible demands, structurally and financially, on its welfare system to overload it.

In short, to create Chaos.

A bit on Hegelian Dialectic as well. And I ended with: “So what are we to do – and what are YOU willing to do?“.  I do that a lot – trying to get people to understand that just writing and reading are insufficient. Our long-term goal here at GraniteGrok is to motivate and activate people to DO things. A lot of people have done so and I’m thankful that they have. Lots of folks liked the post as well. But in the comments, several folks “called” me out. Like Mark Fowler who appears to be a new reader(emphasis mine):

Clever of you, Skip, to dump the responsibility on your readers for coming up with appropriate responses to what the left is doing. So, what then, Skip, is the appropriate response to people who are determined to destroy everything we hold dear, up and including our lives. Are you afraid, Skip, of pointing out that the only possibility they’re giving us is graphically presented by two of the latest commenters, the only ones who don’t seem to think your article is the basis for an intellectual exercise or a game?

Please though, if you have any other possible ways of stopping these people, let us know. I haven’t read many of your other articles, so if you offered them elsewhere, just point them to me, and I’ll be glad to check them out. I’ve been vainly trying for fifty years to convince people of the dangers our country has been facing since basically the end of World War II. Even now, half the country refuses to believe what’s going on right in front of them. So, please, if you have effective ways of stopping the destruction besides the painfully obvious one of getting them before they get us, feel free to comment. We are already desperately behind our enemies in terms of defeating them, so I’d ask that you please hurry.

And he followed up with this (abridged):

..If Skip is Tea Party, he’s been at this for a dozen years. If he doesn’t have suggestions, why is he writing articles which appear designed to provoke fury or hopelessness? From his final comment, I think he knows what needs to be done, but for him to say it could lead to seriously unpleasant consequences. So here we are, as one of the responses mentioned, with no leadership.

And I do thank NoraNH and Allen for adding their comments in defense of me and the post (just two highlighted here).

So Mark? Here’s just ONE set of responses:

  • Yes, GraniteGrok was a founding member of the NH TEA Party Coalition and helped organize rallies, helped other organizations to get activated, and helped candidates for office who were espousing TEA Party philosophy get elected.  Some made it in. Some of those made a difference. We made a difference with our activism.
  • ALL of our writers are political activists. ALL of us. We are ALL volunteers, to boot. We assist by being part of advocacy groups (currently associated with Defend Our Kids in fighting Progressive and Gender Agendas being promulgated by Democrat majorities on School Boards. We are already making a difference with our activism
  • We just don’t write, we get involved. We’ve made difference with our activism and then write about our experiences.
  • I’m also suing my School Board, Gilford SAU73, over their Policy JBAB that rejects the Freedom of Speech and gives itself the Power to lie to parents (by omission and commission) about the transgender status of their minor children.  It was the first lawsuit in NH on this topic. There is now another lawsuit against Exeter SAU41 on similar grounds. I am expecting a few more as well. That’s making a difference.
  • I have been a political activist in my town for almost 20 years in getting involved in my village’s politics.  I made a difference.
  • I served on my village’s SB2 Budget Committee (one with TEETH) for almost 10 years. I made a difference and corrected a lot of “wrongness” that I found (making the “good ole boys” rather upset).
  • I have helped numerous other candidates run for office either directly or as an advisor. I made a difference. Most of the Groksters have done the same thing.
  • And we tell them

As far as others are concerned, for years, I have asked Readers:

  • to get involved,
  • get politically active,
  • run or help someone else run,
  • write the letters, send the emails,
  • show up at legislative hearings,
  • talk elected officials’ ears off.
  • And take part where your ROI on effort is both the easiest and largest – get involved in your Town’s governance. Get involved with boards and commissions as appointees. Run for local office in your towns.  Start there.

Then do more.

And GraniteGrok, being the largest and most influential political blogsite in NH, has helped get good legislation passed and stopped bad stuff cold. We’ve written legislation as well.  For a bunch of volunteers, we punch well above our weight class (from what I’ve been told).

So no, I don’t just “dump the responsibility on your readers for coming up with appropriate responses” onto others. Rather, while still trying to sound humble, I’ve tried to point the way – that we on the Right left Govt on autopilot and the Left took advantage of that vacuum and now we have to fight harder to put traditional American norms back in place.

Mark, I will give you this – you’re new here and haven’t read the almost 17,00 posts I’ve written since I opened the GraniteGrok’s doors back in 2006.  I’m NOT going to point you to all of them because that would suck up my time better spent in doing more writing, advocacy, and activism.

Suffice it to say, and I really do hate patting myself on the back as I ALWAYS say that I’m just an ordinary schlub from Central New Hampsha, I’ve done all that you kvetched about and more.

Much more.

Satisfied?

 

The post It Can’t Be a Coincidence That So Many Things Have Gone So Wrong in So Little Time – You Wanted Answers? I Got Answers! appeared first on Granite Grok.

Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Proposed Master Plan Development of Gunstock Ski Area Seems Too Hasty

Fri, 2022-02-25 01:00 +0000

I was in attendance at last Wednesday’s meeting of the Gunstock Area Commissioners where the details of the initial first phase of the “master plan” were presented. It was certainly eye-opening.

Quite frankly, it was rather frightening when one thinks about the many years the area has been preserved and cared for with (mostly) careful stewardship by many good people. I came away with the conclusion that this proposal must be stopped until cooler heads and more careful thought can prevail. The whole “plan” as it was delivered was rather obvious in that it just seems to be a cover for certain corporate players and their hotel/restaurant plans.

Phase One is the primary carrot and the first foot in the door for the commercialization. When hearing the proposed numbers, it doesn’t require one to be a mathematician or economist to quickly conclude there is no sound financial possibility to ever come back and finish the other four phases, let alone this one.

Gunstock is currently making very good money now with the existing area. The only complaints are the slow Tiger and Pistol chairs. Let’s come up with a well-thought plan for those upgrades in order to sustain current levels of profitability and maintain the Gunstock we all love. I cannot believe all the locals actually “love” this plan, as it does everything they claim “privatization” would bring, except it dumps all of the financial risk onto the backs of local taxpayers.

Additionally, I am shocked that local residents haven’t had anything to say about the proposed development in subsequent phases on the backside in the Weeks property area.

In my many years here, our town has worked hard and spent lots of money preserving and protecting undeveloped lands in the town of Gilford. And now, at last week’s meeting, we were told by GAC commissioner Gary Kiedaisch that our Conservation Committee is “thrilled” with the idea. Really?

I know that many have been all ginned up over the whole proposed unicorn/rainbow plans for Gunstock (or, as Kiedaisch calls it, “the art of what’s possible”) but I strongly believe a pause to consider the reality of what’s going on is in order before we start something that, in the end, could cause the ruination of this special place we call Gunstock, as well as leaving Belknap County taxpayers holding an expensive bill of goods…

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Reversal on Mask Mandates Reinforces Lack of Authority for Broad Health Measures by School Districts

Thu, 2022-02-24 23:30 +0000

Governor Chris Sununu’s announcement yesterday that New Hampshire is no longer recommending that face masks be worn in indoor public spaces, including schools, calls into question his office’s credibility and leadership.

Specifically, the state’s sudden reversal on face masks concedes that school districts never had the authority to require masks in the first place, and involves a significant degree of hypocrisy and disingenuousness.

For nearly two years, Governor Sununu did nothing to protect the health of children from the harmful effects of remote learning and face masks. His office and the Department of Education allowed school districts to implement wildly divergent policies and directives concerning the frequency of in-person instruction, the handling of positive COVID cases, and masking requirements.

His administration has now done a complete 180: it has abandoned its recommendation that masks be worn in indoor public spaces. The Governor’s administration also put out two statements that make matters more confusing.

First, the Governor stated schools should no longer require that masks be worn because it would conflict with his administration’s new guidance. “Guidance,” however, is not law and has no force or effect. The Governor’s mere guidance cannot compel school districts to do anything.

Second, in an advisory to school districts, the Department of Education stated “[a] mask requirement may violate the district’s obligation to maintain policies that meet the instructional needs of each individual student, promote a school environment that is conducive to learning, and that meets the special physical health needs of students.”

Accordingly, the Department (presumably with the Governor’s approval) has now conceded that a school district mask mandate not only conflicts with its obligations to all of its students but also potentially violates the rights of students with special needs.

This is certainly a jaw-dropping moment: in the many lawsuits I handled, school districts insisted they had “broad” authority to require masks, and some of their attorneys erroneously argued not having a mask mandate posed risks for students with 504 plans. Now the agency that oversees these school districts has expressly rejected both assertions.

This presents an opportunity to remind school districts (and the Governor) that districts never had the authority to implement mask mandates in the first place, and the Governor could have taken more preventive steps to protect children from the harms of wearing a mask.

School Districts Do Not Have the Authority to Mandate Masks

The New Hampshire Constitution grants no direct power to towns or cities. The only Constitutional power that is granted is Part I, Article 39, which prohibits the legislature from changing the form of government of a town or city without the approval of the voters.

Instead, the New Hampshire Constitution grants power to the legislature, which, in turn, may grant power to municipalities if it wishes to through statutes. New Hampshire follows “Dillon’s Rule.” Under that rule, municipalities have only those powers that are (1) expressly granted by the state legislature, (2) necessarily implied from expressly granted powers, or (3) essential and indispensable to their declared objects and purposes.

In a 1970 decision titled Piper v. Meredith, the New Hampshire Supreme Court made clear that “towns are, but subdivisions of the State and have only the powers the State grants to them.”

Under this framework, cities and towns can neither add to their authority nor reduce their responsibilities unless the legislature permits them. These limitations are strictly construed against the municipality: any doubt regarding whether a municipality has a certain power must be resolved against the existence of that power.

In other words, if there is a question about whether a municipality can exercise certain authority, a court must conclude it does not have that authority and deny it that power. Thus, if a municipality seeks to take any action, it must find a statutory provision allowing it to do so.

These principles apply to school districts. Like cities and towns, the authority of a school board is limited to those powers expressly stated in its governing statutes.

School districts have various powers and responsibilities in RSA 189, RSA 194, and RSA 200. I will spare you the suspense: none of these provisions allows school districts or school boards to enact broad health measures, let alone a requirement that children wear face coverings or face masks.

RSA Chapter 200 is the only section that addresses school districts’ powers concerning health, but that chapter is limited to “health and sanitation.” Everything in it concerns, among other items, the safety of buildings, access to medical care in case of injuries, school health personnel, physical and health education, the air quality in the school, head injury policies for school sports, and the use of specific medical equipment in schools (like nebulizers and bronchodilators).

Only two sections in that chapter (RSA 200:38 and RSA 200:39) direct what school districts may do in response to the outbreak of a communicable disease. RSA 200:38 is titled “Control and Prevention of Communicable Diseases; Duties of School Nurse,” and RSA 200:39 is titled “Exclusion from School.” RSA 200:38 requires only that school nurses ensure children have up-to-date immunizations and a complete physical examination and report any instances of non-compliance to school administrators. RSA 200:39 requires a child who “exhibits symptoms of contagion or is a hazard to himself or others” to “be excluded from the classroom,” and the parents of the child must be notified.

Nothing in those sections permits a school district to pass a broad mask mandate (or any broad health measure). If there was such authority, the legislature would have included it there.

School districts – through their attorneys – repeatedly argued they have “broad” authority to ensure children learn in a safe environment, and that authority was somehow derived from the statutes above concerning the safety of school buildings. That, of course, is preposterous, and numerous cases in other states have expressly rejected that reasoning.

Indeed, there is something quite different between making sure a school building satisfies the building code, on the one hand, and forcing every healthy student to wear a mask, on the other; or between having a nurse on-site to provide a child with aspirin if the child has a headache, on the one hand, and requiring every student to wear a mask as a condition of going to school and partaking in the benefits and privileges of being a student, on the other.

School districts do not have the authority to require masks.

Governor Sununu Could Have Banned School Districts From Mandating Masks

Governor Sununu’s approach to masks in schools was to allow school districts to adopt their own policies. While he may have believed this approach was consistent with a conservative or libertarian political philosophy, it contradicts many tenets of both: the protection of civil liberties, non-interventionism, and limitation on the size and scope of government.

Governor Sununu could have followed his Republican counterparts in Florida (Governor Ron DeSantis) and Texas (Governor Greg Abbott) and issued an executive order banning school districts from mandating masks or directing the Department of Education to promulgate rules establishing a similar ban. He certainly had the authority to do so: Part 2, Article 41 of the New Hampshire Constitution vests the “executive power of the state” in the Governor, and the Governor “shall be responsible for the faithful execution of the laws.”

In requiring children to wear masks, school districts acted outside their authority. In addition, parents have a fundamental Constitutional right to direct the care and upbringing of their children, and that right includes the right to make healthcare and medical decisions for their children.

Parents’ due process rights protect their decisions concerning their children’s medical care and dictate that those decisions should be made by parents rather than the state. Governor Sununu could have issued an executive order enforcing the limits on school district authority and preserving parents’ Constitutional rights. He failed to do so.

This administration’s announcement on masks is a welcomed development, but the Governor’s sudden reversal – with nary an explanation for his hypocrisy – raises more questions than answers and makes one wonder why we placed our children in harm’s way for so long, given the Governor’s overdue (and tacit) acknowledgment that school districts should have never required masks at all.

Unfortunately, the answer to that question does not lie in Dr. Benjamin Chan’s explanation that, “[a]s the risk decreases, we can pull back on some of the recommended prevention strategies.”

No – it’s an election year, and the Governor understands politics better than the law.

 

 

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

Exeter, We Have a Problem

Thu, 2022-02-24 22:00 +0000

Mr. Neil Bleicken, a five-year member of the Exeter School Board, wrote an opinion piece titled, “Keep partisan politics out of our excellent Exeter schools.” Susan Shanelaris and Anne Sorber, co-founders of the grass-roots ExeterPACT, using state data as their source, responded with a letter-to-the-editor titled “SAU16—The Numbers Don’t Lie.”

Mr. Bleicken writes in auto-hagiographic style with a plethora of superlative adjectives and adverbs. It is a style frowned upon by scholars but favored by politicians (ironic, considering the title of his piece).

He has an annoying tendency, common to politicians, to present facts without attribution and conclusions without backup data. For example, he attributes the decline to student inequalities as in these two quotes:

 

[T]he most significant factor affecting the slight decline in our test scores was the increasing number of students in our schools who experienced inequality.

It’s important to remember that … inequality is a major problem here in Exeter … a good estimate is that at least 40% of our kids come from such a circumstance.

 

There is no backup provided for these statements other than the author’s unsupported word. I searched the state data referenced above and found that the Stratham Memorial School’s disadvantaged population was less than 10%. The Exeter District elementary schools were shown with disadvantaged ratios of 18% (2018), 18% (2019), 16% (2020), and 11% (2021). These numbers are considerably lower than the quoted 40% and have been decreasing rather than increasing as stated in the above quote.

Whenever we discuss assessing academic achievement using standardized tests, there is an outcry that such tests are not an accurate measure of academic achievement. That is perhaps, probably, so — but they are standardized and therefore provide reliable measures of relative performance, one year to the next, one town to another, or one town to the state average.

SAU16 rankings have been slipping for some time now. Does this imply that the SAU16 students are less capable of learning now than they once were? Does it imply, as asserted in the opinion piece, that the demographics of Exeter students have changed significantly? Or does it imply that the SAU16 curriculum has been diverging from the rest of the state?

The chart of achievement scores below has been constructed from the previously referenced state data. It is the relative comparisons that are of significance. It is clear that Covid has negatively impacted achievement. What is not clear are instances where the Covid may be masking other negative impacts.

 

Consider the pre and post-Covid English Language and Arts (ELA) scores. Exeter decreased from 71% to 56%, a 15% drop. Stratham dropped 12%. The state dropped only 4%. Similarly, for Math, Exeter dropped 22%, Stratham dropped 28%, and the state dropped only 10%. For Science, Exeter dropped 9%, Stratham dropped 8%, and the state dropped only 2%.

There is a clear difference between the SAU16 results and the state results. If we assume that Covid had a similar impact on the SAU16 schools as state-wide, then there is an undefined “other problem” in play.

Coincidentally, this was the period of increased SAU16 emphasis on wokeness and social justice.

The August 2021 DEI-J presentation panel’s evangelical faith in equity and the equality of outcome is directly antithetical to our founding.

Incidents such as the punishment of an Exeter High student for voicing his belief that there are only two genders may be portents of the coming of authoritarianism.

In conclusion, let us look at another quote from the opinion piece: The decline in our test scores wasn’t – and isn’t – anyone’s “fault” …

Exeter, we have a problem! And we are told it’s nobody’s fault. Thanks for nothing.

We are not interested in fixing the blame, we want to fix the problem. Mr. Bleicken implies it is not possible for us to fix the problem while further implying that there is no problem to fix.  Sir, the problem can’t be fixed unless we acknowledge a problem exists and the SAU16 administration, in their practiced opaque manner, seems to be in denial.

Grass-roots voters, see the ExeterPACT Voter’s Guide.  Vote the incumbents out, replace them with those candidates that are pledged to stop the indoctrination and to return the SAU16 mission to education.

Please – VOTE on 8 March 2022.

 

Mike Johnson is a small-government conservative, a live-free-or-die resident of NH, and the author of the e-book John Kerry & PCF-44.  E-mail mnosnhoj@comcast.net

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Categories: Blogs, New Hampshire

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