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08A | april 09-16, 2008 | Âť sevendaysvt.com

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Seven Days wants your rants and raves, in 250 words or fewer. Letters must respond to content in Seven Days. Include your full name, town and a daytime phone number, and post to: sevendaysvt.com/letters or letters@sevendaysvt.com or mail to: Seven Days, P.O. Box 1164, Burlington, VT 05402-1164.

of common interest (and got things accomplished).â&#x20AC;? This political bent colors Hofferâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s analysis, but unlike the more than 1200 words (and another 778 in spurious â&#x20AC;&#x153;footnotesâ&#x20AC;?) he got, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve only got 250 to respond. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll leave it at this: Hofferâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s analysis is as flawed as the decision to package it as news. Kevin Dorn MONTPELIER

Dorn is Vermontâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Secretary of Commerce and Community Development.

analysis degraded an otherwise excellent paper. The whole publication is brighter without that snot trail down the center. Karl Riemer UNDERHILL

NO SOOTHSAYING ALOUD Is Seven Days honestly replacing Peter Freyne with a Democratic Party newsletter [â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Pollina Problem,â&#x20AC;? March 26]? Jon Margolis says that Progressive voters â&#x20AC;&#x153;disdainâ&#x20AC;?

Democrats for their â&#x20AC;&#x153;pragmatism and compromise.â&#x20AC;? As a Progressive voter, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m contemplating whether I really should have disdain for Democrats. After all, the party of â&#x20AC;&#x153;pragmatism and compromisesâ&#x20AC;? gave us the Iraq war, the Patriot Act, No Child Left Behind, the â&#x20AC;&#x153;Cleanâ&#x20AC;? Forest Act, a half a trillion dollar military budget, and a host of other mind-altering experiences. Also, wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t it Progressives who let the Dems have uncontested shots at the U.S. House and a host

of statewide office seats for the past several years? Alas, it seems futile to hold contempt. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll continue to vote for qualified Democrats. Margolis can spend time fumbling with his political spectrum meter to read people as if with a Geiger counter. Meanwhile, I will consider any candidate who will fix our health-care system, implement a sustainable-energy vision, ensure a MORE LETTERS >> 23A

Editorâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Note: While Hofferâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s piece was listed under columns in our table of contents and tagged â&#x20AC;&#x153;op-edâ&#x20AC;? in the online edition, it should have been more clearly labeled as opinion in the news pages. Hoffer is not a Seven Days staffer, but a guest columnist for the space formerly occupied by Peter Freyne. SNOT TRAIL? Thank goodness Peter Freyne doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t enjoy dribbling any more. Otherwise we might never have been rid of his puerile sniping [â&#x20AC;&#x153;Inside Track,â&#x20AC;? R.I.P.]. Seven Days apparently canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t grasp that mockery isnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t commentary, nor is bar-stool gossip political insight. Making fun of public officials may actually be fun â&#x20AC;&#x201D; giggling sophomoric wanker fun, but fun. Pretending that it was political

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POINT TAKEN Readers of Seven Days are no doubt used to reading left-leaning opinion pieces in its pages. But couching opinion as news and failing to inform readers of the writerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s biases is a different story. And thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s exactly what Seven Days did in its last issue, when it allowed Progressive activist Doug Hoffer to pen a â&#x20AC;&#x153;storyâ&#x20AC;? headlined â&#x20AC;&#x153;Is Vermont Really on the Jobâ&#x20AC;? with a tag that read â&#x20AC;&#x153;Economyâ&#x20AC;? [Columns, April 2]. Anyone reading the piece â&#x20AC;&#x201D; a so-called â&#x20AC;&#x153;analysisâ&#x20AC;? criticizing the Douglas administrationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s economic record â&#x20AC;&#x201D; might have mistakenly believed Hoffer to be a staff writer, or â&#x20AC;&#x153;an independent policy analyst,â&#x20AC;? as he was described at the end of the â&#x20AC;&#x153;story.â&#x20AC;? Hoffer is a political operative and a Progressive activist whose work consists largely of selectively â&#x20AC;&#x153;analyzingâ&#x20AC;? statistics to reach the conclusions desired by those paying his bills. Here are some excerpts of a post Hoffer made to Green Mountain Daily, the Democratic-oriented blog, on February 12, defending his Progressive credentials and his work with Democrats: â&#x20AC;&#x153;Well, Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m a Prog and I work with Dems all the time . . . Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ve attended meetings with the State Treaurer (sic) and the State Auditor arranged by [Progressive gubernatorial candidate] Anthony [Pollina] where we discussed issues

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Seven Days, April 9, 2008  

Why Natalie Garza Won’t Give Up the Seach for Her Son; Breaking Down the Compost Saga; Youngest House Representative Faces an Old Battle; Ea...

Seven Days, April 9, 2008  

Why Natalie Garza Won’t Give Up the Seach for Her Son; Breaking Down the Compost Saga; Youngest House Representative Faces an Old Battle; Ea...

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