Finance Committee fails Acton Town Meeting

At last night's Annual Town Meeting (TM), my friend Charlie Kadlec proposed an amendment to the town funding warrant article to transfer $1 million from our reserves to lower next year's tax rate, which would have saved the average taxpayer around $125. The average single-family property tax bill would still have increased to $10,988, a 2.77% increase, but would have stayed under $11,000. His amendment was defeated by about 160-110.

The clash of dictators with free societies

PART ONE IS HERE: http://www.actonforum.com/blogs/allenn/dealing-authoritarian-dictators

I'm up in Canada for a trip this week, and read the regional "Globe and Mail" newspaper, which reported on a recent attempt by the Canadian government to agree to a criminal extradition treaty with China.

Dealing with authoritarian dictators

The concept of free trade is great. We should assume every bilateral relationship with other countries would be based on the ideal of free trade. Free trade provides an economic benefit to our citizens, in that it brings cheaper, or better-quality, goods to our citizens than we otherwise would have had. And in general, competition improves the products made by domestic manufacturers.

Take the American car industry for example. Without competition, American manufacturers had a virtual monopoly and were able to make cars with planned obsolescence.

The subsidization of America

Today's WSJ had a story about some older guy, holding a cute dog in his lap, who was going to be "paying more" if the Republican plan to replace Obamacare came to pass. Nobody likes to hear about someone "paying more" so I read the article. Turns out he was a vet who ran a small office and who offered health insurance to his staff. But his costs would rise because he had an older workforce whose premiums would increase under the new Republican healthcare plan. What a shame, what an injustice!

This is an example of misleading news, if not fake news.

10 Billion apologies

The mainstream media continues to act like the tail is wagging the dog with regards to Donald Trump. He apparently spends a couple minutes on a "tweet" and the media spends several weeks dissecting it, discussing it, and commenting on it. What a master manipulator this guy is.

Fake News, part four

I was reading my favorite WSJ this morning and saw an intriguing headline in the Best of the Web column, which I will paraphrase: Is Mona Lisa happy or sad?

The politics of Living in Fear

Emotions are funny things. Our lives are governed by doing things that make us feel good, and trying to avoid things that make us feel bad.

I guess pain is also like an emotion. The body produces physical pain in order to teach you how to protect yourself. If you touch the hot stove and it really hurts, you won't likely do that again. But if you were able to sever the nerve connections between your finger and your arm, so that the pain message never got to your brain, you could hold your finger to the stove until it was well done.

Fake news--part three

In 2015, during the presidential campaign, Trump made many statements about illegal immigrants causing crime. After a pretty lengthy discussion, the Washington Post fact checker (Mchelle Ye Hee Lee) gave Trump's statement "four pinocchios" for being false. This is defined as a "whopper" and the worst rating for falsehood. This is a clear-cut example of "fake news" generated by the mainstream media.

Here is the link: https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2015/07/08/donald-tr...

Examples of Fake News--Part Two

After posting my fake news article this morning, I was remarking to a friend how much snow we've gotten and how California has turned from drought to plenty with regards to water. I made the statement that California's drought must be over, based on overflowing dams and reservoirs, with more rain on the way.

"Oh, but the aquifers might never recover," he said. Say what?

Examples of Fake News

I agree with President Trump that the media is biased against him, that the news is often slanted against him and "Republicans" in general, and that the media is, by and large, his enemy.