Category Archives: schools

>OBSERVATION: Vermont … stranger than fiction.

>I seem to be having a fixation with Vermont. You will recall, I previously have written about the effort but the good people of Brattleboro to have President Bush and Vice President Cheney arrested for “high crimes and misdemeanors” against the sacred U.S. Constitution. Never mind that such an arrest warrant would be … uh … unconstitutional.

Item #1: Prisons trump schools

Well, now I understand their zeal to incarcerate the Commander-in-Chief and his sidekick. Seems like bucolic maple syrup center of the world is also one of only four states that spends more money on imprisonment than they do on education. That’s right. That sappy (how ever you wish to interpret the word) New England state would rather see their future generation behind bars than behind books.

Since lack of education is a major contributor to criminal behavior, you can see why the leaders of Brattleboro would do something illegal in the hopes of adding to their prison population. For them, it’s a win-win.

Item #2: Ben and Jerry are from Vermont … figures!

I must admit, in my past writing about the quirky state of Vermont, I failed to connect the state with Ben and Jerry, the quirky ice cream-as-politics duo. I should have guessed.

They recently donated an Obamamobile (picture) to the Illinois senator’s campaign. The idea is to drive around handing out their frozen products in an effort to induce citizens to vote of Obama. In my amazingly corrupt home state of Illinois, we used to give derelicts (now known as” the homeless”) a pint of cheap booze to influence their vote. I guess ice cream is more acceptable to the gentle folks of Vermont. While Chicago was famous for “saloon politics,” I guess Vermont is building its reputation on “ice cream parlor politics.”

The Obamamobile is a variation of their “cowmobile.” I guess they are hoping Obama catches fire, which is exacly what happened to their cowmobile … literally. Yep! Ice cream flambe.
All this stuff ties together. Ben and Jerry, in there roles as left-wing political activists, were responsible for 70,000 postcards being sent to Congress in support of the national Children’s Defense Fund. Now … see the connection? Of course they focus on children’s defense since their fellow Vermonters spend more money on incarceration than education. In Vermont, the kids need lawyers more than teachers.

Item #3: Ice cream soda versus scotch and soda.

Vermont wants to lower the drinking age. I am not kidding.

State Senator Hinda Miller sees it this way. “Our laws aren’t working. They’re not preventing underage drinking. What they’re doing is putting it outside the public eye. So you have a lot of kids binge drinking. They get sick, they get scared and they get into trouble and they can’t call because they know it’s illegal.”

If I am understanding her reasoning, Hinda thinks it is better to see a lot of intoxicated kids in public rather than deal with only those who would imbibe illegally in private.

This would certainly cut down the crime rate in Vermont. Perhaps they could use some of the savings to fund education. Better yet, they could send consolation money to the families of the highway accident victims. Did they forget that a lot of carnage on the interstate is due to teen drinking? It is of little consequence to the victims and their families to know that the teenager behind the wheel was drinking legally.

I wonder what Ben and Jerry think about all this. After all, the mint swirl will give way to the mint julep, and rocky road will be the real highway and not a chocolate treat.
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Honest to God! There must be something in that maple syrup that interfers with cognitive thinking.
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