On Independence Day, a lesson in local governance

Although the Declaration of Independence depicted him as a despot, the real conflict between England and her American colonies was not between King George III and Democracy but between the rights of the British people represented as they were by their own Parliament, and the rights of the American colonists represented as they were by their own colonial assemblies. In this conflict no one was a greater supporter of the rights and authority of the British Parliament than the King.

Climate change legacy: What will future generations think of our culture?

What is there to say about a civilization that ignores the quickening pace of climate chaos? When the margin available for preventing vast damage across a hundred generations is already gone, what is there to say about a people who again and again embrace habits and systems and ideologies that deepen the damage?

Globalism explained

The political battle lines over globalism have created an unpredictable electoral climate that is perplexing the Ruling Class of the Western world. Fault lines have developed, with the Ruling Class outraged that the masses will not listen to their betters and vote accordingly. Thus, we have Ruling Class outrage over the Brexit vote in England and the victory of President Donald Trump.

Descent into secrecy: Senate health talks retreat further from transparency

In three decades of reporting, I’ve had a front-row seat to Congress’ slow, stuttering retreat from such step-by-step transparency, a process known as “regular order.” It has now culminated in the Senate GOP leadership’s top-secret process to try to write a health bill that could change the formula for nearly one-fifth of the nation’s economy, with a vote they want to cast by July 4.

A ‘conspiracy’ for higher ratings — at Newtown’s expense

NBC’s newest multi-million-dollar anchor is about to give America – and Connecticut in particular – a lesson in journalistic ethics. It’s a fight that pits the network’s need for ratings and publicity against the pleas of Sandy Hook parents not to cause them more pain. This weekend, Sunday Night with Megyn Kelly plans to air an interview with conspiracy website author and radio host Alex Jones. In one of his more outlandish theories, Jones has called the monstrous shooting “a giant hoax.” No one died there, the theory goes. Instead, the government hired actors to pretend there was a shooting, in order to increase support for gun control, Jones claimed.

A renewed commitment to the state of Israel and the Jewish people

Last month in Washington, D.C., I had the opportunity to take part in the commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between the China and Israeli states, jointly hosted by both countries’ ambassadors to the United States. … While the purpose of the gathering was to celebrate Chinese and Israeli relations, it also underscored the unique and unbreakable bond between the United States and Israel.

Lawmakers, leave the Johnson Amendment alone

The Connecticut Council for Philanthropy (CCP) is an association of grantmakers committed to promoting and supporting effective philanthropy for the public good. On behalf of the Board of CCP, we are writing to express our strong opposition to federal legislation that would repeal the Johnson Amendment, thereby politicizing the charitable nonprofit and philanthropic community by repealing or weakening current federal tax law protections that prohibit 501(c)(3) organizations from endorsing, opposing, or contributing to political candidates.

Fair housing rule needs to be used everywhere, not weakened

Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing rule and fair housing policy are lifelines to low income families and people of color who have been crowded into low opportunity neighborhoods in cities like Hartford. AFFH is under attack from both the Trump administration and Congress. Dr. Ben Carson, the current Secretary of HUD, has gone on the record against AFFH, stating that it relies on a “tortured reading of the Fair Housing laws” to effect change. AFFH. We need HUD and the federal government to use these rules, not repeal them.

Look at the sunny side and go solar

What’s an American couple to do right after the winter of our discontent—not to mention despair and disbelief?
How about doing organizational work in your congressional district for the midterm elections in 2018? You bet! Perchance talk civilly to friends, neighbors and relatives —even strangers— about issues that you feel are important to your family, to your children and grandchildren (and theirs)? Amen, sisters and brothers.My wife and I are looking on the sunny side.