Category Archives: commentary

Paying for a specific vote should be a no go

I’ve got an idea. Let’s contact right-leaning individuals across the country and take their credit card number. Have everyone authorize a charge of $20.20, which will only be swiped if, and only if, Sen. Susan Collins votes in favor of Brett Kavanaugh. If she does, all that money will be donated to her campaign — […]

Tribalism is not patriotism

That didn’t last long. John McCain was laid to rest last weekend. Regardless of your opinion on his politics, he was lauded as someone who tried to put the nation’s best interest first. That is why he was eulogized by two former presidents, who each bested him en route to the White House (with supporters […]

Good and bad, our labor history lives with us

It is hard to believe it is already Labor Day. With the traditional end of summer, the political season will soon begin to ramp up. The holiday offers a respite before we plunge into the home stretch of campaigns. The paternity of “Labor Day” as a day off is disputed. Both a Mr. McGuire and […]

Is it the will of the people to penalize marriage?

With all the hoopla occurring this week, two reports released last week have gotten overshadowed.  However, those reports focus on impacts more immediate to Mainers than guilty pleas or Supreme Court justices. They deal with ballot questions, past and present. The first was released by the conservative-leaning Maine Heritage Policy Center. Titled “The Will of […]

We need standards on who can vote. Citizenship is a good one.

Who gets a vote? That simple question belies a complex reality facing a new study group in Portland.   Tuesday night, the Portland City Council decided Mayor Ethan Strimling and Councilor Pious Ali’s proposal to permit non-citizens to vote needed more work. The ACLU was worried about it violating privacy rights, while many Portland voters […]

The media isn’t the enemy, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t biased

Read these two headlines. What do you expect from the story? “After spending thousands to buy, renovate Augusta building, state now plans to demolish it.” “State buys bank-owned property for two-thirds of asking price, plans to address parking shortage.” The first headline sounds like an example of government waste. The second sounds like good old-fashioned […]

Shooting the messenger

“Ready, aim, fire!” “We’ve done it, sir. The messenger has been shot.” That seems to sum up the current state of political discourse. This past week, a libertarian-leaning think tank released a report about Sen. Bernie Sanders’ “Medicare For All” proposal. The bottom line of the study? “Medicare For All” would cost the federal government […]

Abolish the police? Let’s say thanks instead.

“Abolish all police.” That was a chant in Portland a few weeks ago. Attorney General Jeff Sessions came to Maine to discuss the opiate crisis. The proposals he offered were criticized — fairly — for overemphasis on enforcement and a lack of consideration on how other variables play into the challenge, such as marijuana legalization. […]

Congress needs to know its role and stop wrestling over Kavanaugh nomination

“Know your role.” Before Dwayne Johnson’s real name was popularly known, his wrestling persona “The Rock” coined the catchphrase. We could probably heed his advice in the public sphere. One of the details seemingly lost in the tales full of sound and fury — ultimately signifying naught — related to Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s nomination to […]

Government isn’t run like a business

Should we run government like a business? That is a question that will be asked over the next several months. Those on the left generally deride this concept, claiming government is different. They aren’t necessarily wrong. After all, in business — or non-profits, or most human organizations designed to work efficiently — there is a […]