GOVERNOR DOUGLAS STEAMED AT LEGISLATIVE LEADERS; THREATENS TO JOIN TALIBAN* Okay, we made up the part about Gentle Jim joining the Taliban - but he is ripped at the Senate for holding up a jobs bill that Douglas expected to push through in late January or early Feb. Concerns about the Vermont Telecommunications Authority, not Burlington Telecom, is grinding the process to a crawl, but leaders are saying the vote is right around the corner.
SIGN OF THE CROSS
* Burlington has finally hired a budget analyst, as if they need one. LOL LOL LOL LOL...
The lucky dog is George Cross, former Dem state rep and school superintendent. Anonymous sources say the search was narrowed to Cross, Alan Greenspan, and the former Isle La Motte town clerk, with GC getting the nod.
VPR BIASED ?
* Is Vermont Public Radio biased toward the Red Sox? Whether it's Mitch Wakelieb
talking about the Sox, or the one that writes the newsletter (always forget her name - let's call her Youkette
) writing that she's a fan, OR, the station sponsoring yearly trips to Fenway, it's clearly evident there's a leaning toward the left - of New York, that is. Facing south.
We would bet 17 million Burlington Telecom dollars that VPR's listenership are/is 30-50% Yankee fans, who probably give some of their cold hard cash to various station fundraisers. Hmmm.
By the way, have you checked out the price of the trip to Fenway
, which includes a ticket, bus ride, VPR sticker, Deb Markowitz
bobblehead(just a rumor)and a complimentary tour of the park. It's only $275! No, not $75. $275. Ouch! Let's see. $50 for the seat, $50 for the bus... oh, never mind.
BILL S.88 (HEALTHY VERMONT) PASSES SENATE VT WORKERS CENTER ORGANIZERS SO HAPPY THEY ALMOST PEED THEIR PANTS!
* Note to Vermont Workers Center
Get some names on your website. More cred will be attained if there is some individual branding. When one scopes the site, one sees many good things, but zero contact names. Don't hide. You're doing good work. Let the folks who are unfamiliar with your org know who you are.
(Press release from Vermont Workers Center)
Montpelier - On Wednesday, April 7, the Vermont Senate passed S.88 by an overwhelming majority of 28-2. Passage of this bill by the Senate is a major step toward recognizing the human right to healthcare in Vermont and is an important victory for the "Healthcare Is A Human Right" Campaign. The bill calls for the hiring of consultants to design three health care models, one of which must be a single payer system that is administered by government, publicly financed and decoupled from employment. All three of the models must meet the Healthcare is a Human Right principles of universal access and coverage, be comprehensive and affordable, be transparent in design and must ensure public participation in the design, implementation, evaluation, and accountability. The designs also have to include implementation timelines beginning no later than July, 2012.
"This vote in the Senate is a huge victory for us. When we started this campaign, across the board Statehouse insiders this couldn't be done. But as a result of this campaign and the voices of thousands of Vermonters telling them that Vermont should lead the nation in making healthcare a public good for all, we are changing what is possible," said Walter Carpenter, who lives in Montpelier and volunteered with the campaign after struggles with the healthcare system that brought him near death as result of insurance companies denied coverage for care. "
The Healthcare is a Human Right Campaign started building a grassroots network to change what was "politically possible" in healthcare reform in 2008. THis past Fall they held eleven People's Forums on Healthcare with almost eighty state legislators and over eight hundred total participants testifying to the healthcare crisis in communities acoss the state and laying out principles that comprise the right to healthcare. The improved S.88 "Healthy Vermont" Bill adopted languages and frameworks that include these principles.
"We thank our Senators for their votes, and now look to their fellow legislators in the House to do the right thing" says Peg Franzen, Policy Committee Chair for the Campaign. The Campaign is currently gearing up for a huge May 1st Rally at the Statehouse, which has been billed as the largest rally of its kind in Vermont's history. The main purpose of the rally is to celebrate the Campaign's achievements so far, to keep building the momentum for universal single-payer healthcare, and to keep the pressure on the House of Representatives.
For a full analysis of the just-passed S88 and more information on the campaign, please visit the Campaign's website at www.workerscenter.org/healthcare. The "Healthcare Is A Human Right" Campaign also has local leaders and organizers spread throughout the state in every community and they are available for interviews by any news organization.
- Seven Days coverage of "We-Ain't-No-Fools-Day" http://7d.blogs.com/blurt/2010/04/health-care-reform-in-vermont-on-life-support.html
Also see. www.nofools.org
- New short 9 minute film released on the Healthcare Is A Human Right Campaign, "If Vermont Leads, The Rest of the Nation Will Follow". www.workerscenter.org/movie
- Healthcare Is A Human Right Campaign website: including frequently asked questions, analysis of federal and state health bills and much more. www.workerscenter.org/healthcare
- "Sen. Racine unveils health bill; Goal is universal coverage in Vermont" Times Argus/Rutland Herald. http://www.timesargus.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20100310/NEWS02/310...
- "VT. health reform tops January Agenda" VT Press Bureau http://www.timesargus.com/article/RH/20091214/NEWS03/912140360
- "To Your Health" 12/22/09 Seven Days column by Shay Totten http://www.7dvt.com/2009your-health
- Dec 10: Human Rights Day Report with Nurses & Sen. Racine: http://www.workerscenter.org/node/190
- Sen. Racine Announces Hearings on S.88/H.100: http://www.workerscenter.org/node/185
- Rutland Herald Editorial endorses HCHR Campaign: http://www.workerscenter.org/node/138
- Musicians launch benefit CD for HCHR Campaign: http://vermontcareforall.org/
- VPR's All Things Considered with Scott Ainslie, musician and HCHR leader. Link to listen http://www.vpr.net/flash/audio_player/audio_player.php?id=29863
- Dec 5: The Vermont NEA, the State's Largest Union Gets Behind HCHR Campaign http://www.workerscenter.org/node/189
- Healthcare Is A Human Right Campaign: www.workerscenter.org/healthcare
- Summary of bills S.88/H.100: http://www.workerscenter.org/node/168
- Burlington Free Press My Turn "Vermont Must Lead The Way" http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/article/20091202/OPINION02/912020315/...
- Vermont Public Radio Report on HCHR: http://www.workerscenter.org/node/134
HALFWIT OF THE MONTH* Dude from Massachusetts
on his way to Springfield, Vt
jail to serve time for DUI. Arrives at the correctional facility, hammered, and admits he drove himself there. Prison official gets on the horn, calls police and dude gets processed for second deewee. Please excuse me while I look at the wall and shake my head in utter disbelief.
FIVE CORNERS UPDATE
* Arrived at the Essex Junction Five Corners Light
yesterday around noon. A thought popped in my noggin. "I'm hungry, I'm craving a grinder, Martone's
is right there, and the I'll be idling for over an hour waiting for this stupid light to turn green." So I put the car in park, went and got the grinder and had a fabulous lunch skimming the latest copy of the North Avenue News
. You know, I think the Five Corners is quickly becoming one of my favorite destinations.!