Bob Meade - A cancer spreading in the world

Cancer in humans is one of the worst illnesses a person can have. If it is caught early, doctors can often arrest the growth or progress of the cancer through the use of surgical procedures, radiation, and/or the use of chemotherapy. While it exists, It is an extremely difficult time for the patient and family. It requires continued monitoring by the medical professionals, to persistently probe and search for any indications that the cancerous growth has metastasized, or spread to other parts of the body. If that constant or on-going medical surveillance is not done, the cancer may spread and the patient could die sooner than he or she might have.

Compare the human body to the world in which we live. There are places in the world body where terrorism is a cancer. As it is with the person who has the first stage of cancer, and with those in the medical profession working diligently to eliminate it, if the world body chooses to ignore or not vigorously fight to remove the cancer of terrorism, it will metastasize and spread . . . and, it has. The question is, are we and the countries of the world doing all that can be done to eliminate the cancer of terrorism from the world body? It appears not.

In November of 2014, the Atlantic Monthly put out a report on terrorism, showing how it has been spreading world-wide. The report showed that in 2013, five countries, Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Nigeria, and Syria, suffered 82 percent of all the deaths from terrorism – a 61 percent increase in just one year. In addition, 24 other countries had 50or more terror-related murders.

Terrorism is metastasizing significantly. In 2000, there were 3,361 deaths from terrorism. By 2013, that number had grown to 17,958. The University of Maryland's Global Terrorism Database has information on more than 125,000 terrorist attacks between 1970 and 2013. That amounts to an average of eight terror attacks a day for 43 years. And, the frequency of the attacks and resulting murder rates are increasing. Terrorism has spread significantly into Africa, Asia, and Europe, with growing numbers in South and North America. A section of the report concluded that military force was not effective in eliminating terrorism and suggested that political solutions were more effective. That seemed to contradict logic as the report itself has shown, and as we have witnessed, the ever expanding growth of terrorism shows no end in sight. As this is being written, the horror of another terrorist attack at the airport in Istanbul has flooded the airwaves.

If you make something cheaper, or if you make it easier to do, more of it will happen. The corollary to that is if you make something more costly, or if you make it harder to do, less of it will happen. In looking at the persistent growth of terrorism, and its infliction of savagery on those they conquer, it is clear that those who oppose terrorism have simply not made it more costly or harder for the terrorists to expand their war activities.

In our own country, we are witnessing an uprising of the people who are upset with our government. That upset is not directed at one party, it is aimed at all parties and the professional politicians who serve self more than they serve the people. The upset is also directed at the bureaucratic system which also serves self more than the people, and imposes regulations that have the force of law with a number of those regulations being in violation of our Constitution.
The very essence of government is "police power," the ability to enforce laws and take the actions necessary to ensure the safety of citizens . . . at the local, state, and federal levels. A great deal of the upset in this country is because the government is not effectively exercising its "police power" to confront terrorism domestically and at its roots, internationally.

What our citizens are experiencing is not unique to this country. There is unrest across the globe as citizens react to the failure of their governments to ensure their safety. "The people" expect and are demanding their governments forcefully address the terrorism problems that are spreading worldwide. Moving people to different countries to escape terrorism creates even greater problems. If the root cause is not addressed, moving people to other environments only serves to accelerate the spread and growth of terrorism. The forced mixing of cultures, languages, dominant religions, social structures, and more, can only cause more of the upheaval we are witnessing in Europe.

The government's police power is to ensure the safety of its citizens. Using faculty lounge talk is not the way to confront the savagery that is taking place . . . that only offers encouragement to the terrorist. We need to employ our police power to its fullest to stop its spread and defeat terrorism.

We must eliminate the cancer before it's too late.

(Bob Meade is a Laconia resident.)

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Michael Barone - Brexit earthquake hits Britain

Earthquakes seldom hit the British Isles. But one did late Thursday night and early Friday morning, as the constituency returns started pouring in on the referendum to decide whether the United Kingdom would remain in or leave the European Union.

Most polls had shown a small margin for remain, and betting markets made it an odds-on favorite. Hedge funds went long on the assumption "Remain" would win. It had the support, after all, of Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron, the leftist Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, Bank of England President Mark Carney and the financial leaders of the City of London.

But as the returns came in, Brexit started running farther and farther ahead, toward its eventual 52 to 48 percent victory. If you look at the map of the results, you see that Scotland, which voted 55 to 45 percent against becoming an independent country in September 2014, was voting 62 percent "Remain." Northern Ireland, concerned about relations with the Irish Republic, voted 56 percent "Remain." London, with its large cosmopolitan immigrant population and rich financial community, voted 60 percent "Remain."

But in between London's M-25 ring road and the Scottish border, there were only a few splotches of "Remain" support. Manchester was pro-remaining, but Birmingham voted "Leave." The industrial North East, a Labour stronghold that Tony Blair represented in Parliament, voted 58 percent "Leave." So did the Conservative-heavy East Midlands, where Margaret Thatcher grew up.

On the doorstep of 10 Downing Street Friday morning Cameron announced he would resign by October and leave negotiating exit from the EU to his successor. That looks likely to be Boris Johnson, mayor of London for eight years until last month, who led the "Leave" campaign effervescently, with an appropriate pause after the horrifying murder June 16 of a pro-"Remain" MP in Yorkshire.

That decision will be made by the Conservative Party, most of whose MPs supported "Leave." Johnson, whose toffish self-mockery and humor masks a penetrating mind, would be an intellectually serious and widely popular leader. All the more so if Michael Gove, now justice secretary and "Leave" co-leader, becomes chancellor or foreign secretary. They are a definitive two-man refutation of the canard that only the stupid and racist supported Brexit.

The Labour Party is in worse shape. In May 2015 it lost all but one of its Scottish parliamentary seats to the Scots Nats. On June 23 "Leave" prevailed in the Labour Party's industrial heartland in the North of England. Its only faithful constituency is Corbyn's home turf, the gentrifying precincts of London. He looks likely to be voted out as leader, with no stellar alternative in sight.

On a visit to Britain in April, Barack Obama called on voters to remain and threatened that Britain would be "at the back of the queue" in any post-Brexit trade negotiations. Interestingly, the 48 percent constituency for "Remain" closely resembles the 51 percent Obama constituency of 2012.

Remain supporters were tilted toward the very highly educated and the uneducated, toward the metropolitan elite and racial and ethnic minorities, toward the very young — and away from the white working class and the relatively old. Both constituencies are geographically clustered, in central cities, sympathetic suburbs and university towns, where so many people drip with contempt for those without the good taste to live nearby.

Such people are quick to call Brexit voters racist, and clearly immigration was an issue on many of their minds. Britain has had record immigration, with many low-skill newcomers from Europe, while the EU prevents it from admitting more high-skill immigrants from elsewhere.

Angela Merkel's August 2015 decision to allow 1 million supposed refugees into Germany has triggered realistic fears of a flood of violently misogynistic Muslims. Johnson and Gove propose instead a point system like Australia's, to limit intake to those with high skills.

Something else motivated the 17 million who voted "Leave" — a healthy nationalism and demand for self-government. Most British laws are now passed by unelected EU bureaucrats in Brussels. You don't have to be a racist to prefer Britain's laws be passed by elected and removable members of Parliament.

Were the polls off? Not by much, and mostly because of one thing polls can't forecast — turnout, higher than May 2015 nationally, but more tepid in pro-"Remain" areas and especially high in the pro-"Leave" factory towns and English countryside. Could differential turnout be decisive here, producing a result most elites dread in November? Maybe. Donald Trump, who as votes were counted jetted into Scotland to promote a golf course, probably thinks so.

(Syndicated columnist Michael Barone is senior political analyst for The Washington Examiner, is a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, a Fox News Channel contributor and co-author of The Almanac of American Politics.)

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E. Scott Cracraft - Fatal mistakes

Recently, this writer was talking with a friend who is a Republican. This man is too much of a gentleman and has way too much class to "like" Donald Trump. Like many in the GOP, he is worried about the direction his party is taking. Still, he will probably vote for Trump as the GOP's choice. He believes that while he might seem extreme, he's just "ull of hot air and will become more moderate once elected.

This writer cannot help but think this dangerous thinking. After all, in 1933, a German became chancellor and many Germans believed that once in office, he, too, would "moderate" his position away from the crazy things he said.

Although the Nazis became the biggest party in the German parliament, they never held a majority of seats. Of course, they disrupted the parliament and walked out en masse when they did not get their way. But, to get support for Hitler as chancellor the Nazis had to appeal to other conservative and militarist groups that thought they could use the Nazis as their own road to power. A big mistake. A fatal mistake.

These groups included conservative Germans, nationalists, old-styled monarchists, the old German aristocracy, and Germany's "military-industrial" complex, who saw Hitler's saber-rattling as profitable to them. Many simply stood for "traditional German values" and only wanted to "make Germany great again."

Many did not particularly like Hitler. In fact, many, especially those members of the old German nobility and Prussian officer corps, detested him but thought that his ability to mobilize a mass movement might benefit their own interests.

Quite a few did not take Hitler seriously. Like some who say they detest Donald Trump but are committed to voting for him, many Germans were certain that Hitler's more extreme rhetoric would soften once he achieved power. A fatal mistake. Even after he took office, many German Jews held out hope that Hitler's anti-Semitism would "blow over." "After all," thought many German Jews, "Germany has gone through periods of anti-Semitism since the Middle Ages and it never got THAT bad." A fatal mistake.

By Der Fuhrer's time, most German Jews had assimilated into the larger German culture. They usually did not look or dress differently from other Germans. Always a minority, they were an educated and successful one with many representatives in business, medicine, law, and even the military. In fact, around 100,000 Jews fought for Germany in WWI. Even so, the Nazis appealed to angry people who were looking for simplistic solutions to very complex problems. They were out to play the "blame game" and since the Jews were a minority the Nazis could do without, they made a convenient scapegoat for Germany's problems.

What about those Germans who did take Hitler seriously and adored him? The Germans who cried when he came on stage and shouted "Sieg Heil?" Many were sincere, patriotic Germans, "true believers" who were mesmerized by Hitler's platitudes, Some, at least, were hoping for Hitler to "moderate." Others saw his methods as necessary for "making Germany great again." Another fatal mistake.

Those who follow populist demagogues, whether it is Hitler, Mussolini, or Trump, should never be written off as "stupid." The demagogues themselves know exactly what they are doing. A high I.Q. or a degree does not confer immunity from brainwashing by any cult, political or religious. The fact that the Germans were among the best-educated, most creative and technologically advanced people in Europe shows that what happened in German could happen anywhere. People in crowds or manipulated by unscrupulous politicians often behave very differently than they might as individuals.

Like Hitler and Mussolini, Donald Trump is a master manipulator who knows how to appeal to his "base," largely angry, disaffected white males. They feel that the country no longer represents their values and many would like to impose these values on other Americans.

Many who both like and dislike Trump are not taking him seriously. Many are confident that, even if he wins in November, he will "moderate" or at least our Constitution and our other two branches of government will keep him in check. Let us hope they are right. If not, can we afford such a mistake?

(Scott Cracraft is a citizen, a taxpayer, a veteran, and a resident of Gilford.)

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Elizabeth Howard - The Only Emperor is the Emperor of Ice Cream*

By ELIZABETH HOWARD

A friend in New York, who gathers writers and illustrators for dinner, will often stop the noisy discussion at the end of the evening and ask: "Would anyone like an ice cream cone?" It might be a cold winter night in January and the last thing anyone is expecting is ice cream in a cone. Everyone smiles and for a few moments arguments are halted and quiet prevails as we devour the ice cream before it melts down the side of the cone.

Notwithstanding, in my mind ice cream cones are best enjoyed outdoors during the summer months. In fact, it wouldn't be summer without ice cream cones. Don't you agree?

According to the International Diary Association (ida.org) "The first official account of ice cream in the New World comes from a letter written in 1744 by a guest of Maryland Governor William Bladen. Apparently President George Washington "spent approximately $200 for ice cream during the summer of 1790" and "President Thomas Jefferson had a recipe for an ice cream delicacy that resembled a modern-day Baked Alaska."

We enjoy many ice cream options in the Lakes Region. Perhaps the closest is Happy Cow Ice Cream Shop on Union Avenue in Laconia. Not only a great variety of favors, you can even have your ice cream in a fruity pebble dipped waffle cone. What a treat!

Kellerhaus in The Weirs has been around since 1906 ... long before any of us were born. When we were growing up a trip to Kellerhaus for ice cream sundaes from the buffet with anything you wanted, strawberries, hot chocolate or butterscotch sauce, nuts, whipped cream, was usually planned around a special occasion. Now when I think about an ice cream sundae of that proportion, I think about how it relates to the number of hours it takes at the gym to work off the calories. A cone is just the right size.

Summer begins when Jordan's on Route 106 in Belmont opens. After an afternoon at the beach and a dinner that's been grilled, it's often off to Jordan's. My mother always requests a "children's portion" of her favorite, pistachio, and then finds even that is too much for her. "Yum, yum, yum" as my Grandfather Howard would have commented.

When you're in the mood for soft ice cream and a graceful swirl of chocolate and vanilla, there is always Dairy Queen. In Japan, the favorite soft ice cream is green tea, devoured with the same passion as Americans devour chocolate.

"Summer time and the living is easy" the aria composed by George Gershwin in 1934 for for the opera Porgy and Bess seems to capture the mood in July and August. It's lovely to meet your neighbors who have been hibernating through the winter.

Last weekend, when I took my bicycle out for early morning ride, I discovered the back tire was flat. After a few minutes I remembered there was a convenience store and gas station a few blocks away. When I didn't have 50 cents for the air pump, the gracious lady behind the counter opened her own pocketbook and handed me two quarters. When that didn't work, a kind man in a red truck offered to help and drove me home with the bike in the back of the truck. I owe them both ice cream cones and an enormous thank you for their generosity and kindness. Lakes Region Style!

Next weekend is Independence Day and during the long weekend of boating, swimming, and enjoying fresh strawberries, corn on the cob and other vegetables, I hope you will stop, have an ice cream cone and remember how fortunate we all are to be living in the United States. Happy Fourth of July.

 

*Title of a poem by the well-known American poet, Wallace Stevens.

Elizabeth Howard's career intersects journalism, marketing and communications. "Ned O'Gorman: A Glance Back," a book she edited, was published in May 2016. She is the author of "A Day with Bonefish Joe," a children's book, published by David R. Godine. She lives in New York City and has a home in Laconia. You can send her a note at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

06-30 Elizabeth Howard flowers

Enjoy the beauty of summer this Fourth of July with some ice cream. (Courtesy photo)

DENNIS, AN ICE CREAM PHOTO WOULD BE BETTER, NOT SURE WHY SHE SENT THIS. GINGER

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Pat Buchanan- Has Trump found formula for beating Hillary?

Stripped of its excesses, Donald Trump's Wednesday speech contains all the ingredients of a campaign that can defeat Hillary Clinton this fall. Indeed, after the speech ended Clinton was suddenly defending the Clinton Foundation against the charge that it is a front for a racket for her family's enrichment.

The specific charges in Trump's indictment of Clinton: She is mendacious, corrupt, incompetent and a hypocrite. "Hillary Clinton ... is a world-class liar," said Trump. She faked a story about being under fire at a Bosnia airport, the kind of claim for which TV anchors get fired. She has lied repeatedly about her email server. She lied to the families of victims of the Benghazi massacre by implying the atrocity was a spontaneous reaction to an anti-Islamic video, not the premeditated act of Islamist terror she knew it to be.

Drop "world-class" and Trump's case is open and shut.

His second charge: "Hillary has perfected the politics of personal profit and theft" and "may be the most corrupt person ever to seek the presidency."

Particulars?

Bill Clinton got $750,000 for a speech from a telecom company facing State Department sanctions for providing technology to Iran. The Clintons got the cash; the telecom company got no sanctions. "Hillary Clinton's State Department approved the transfer of 20 percent of America's uranium holdings to Russia, while nine investors in the deal funneled $145 million to the Clinton Foundation." Trump added, "She ran the State Department like her own personal hedge fund — doing favors for oppressive regimes ... for cash." Together, she and Bill have raked in $153 million since 2001 in speaking fees from "lobbyists, CEOs and foreign governments."

These figures are almost beyond belief.

Sherman Adams had to resign as Ike's chief of staff for accepting a vicuna coat from Bernard Goldfine, who had problems with federal regulators.

When ex-President Reagan, after brain surgery, visited Japan to receive that nation's highest honor, The Grand Cordon of the Supreme Order of the Chrysanthemum, and got a $2 million fee from the media company that hosted his nine-day visit, our liberal editorial pages vomited out their revulsion and disgust.

Where are those media watchdogs today?

Rather than condemning the Clintons' greed, their conflicts of interest and their egregious exploitation of their offices, the media are covering for Hillary and digging for dirt on Trump.

To substantiate his charge of incompetence, Trump notes that Clinton as Senator voted for arguably the greatest strategic blunder in U.S. history, the invasion of Iraq.

She pushed the attack that ousted Col. Gadhafi and unleashed terrorists who took over much of Libya and murdered our ambassador.

She played a leading role in launching the insurrection against Bashar Assad that has left hundreds of thousands dead, uprooted half of Syria and sent millions of refugees to seek asylum in Europe.

Primary beneficiary: ISIS, with its capital in Raqqa.

And the hypocrisy charge?

Though Hillary and Bill Clinton profess to be the fighting champions of women's equality and gay rights, they have banked millions in speaking feels and tens of millions in contributions to the Clinton Foundation from Islamic regimes under whose rule women are treated as chattel and homosexuals are flogged, beheaded and stoned to death.

Why do major media let them get away with such hypocrisy? Because, ideologically, politically, socially, morally and culturally, the major media are with them.

While making the case for the indictment of Hillary Clinton, Trump also outlined an agenda with appeal not only to nationalists, populists and conservatives but working-class and minority Democrats.

If Trump is elected, an economic system "rigged" to enable big corporations to leave and take factories and jobs abroad, and bring their goods back free of charge to kill companies that stay in America, will end. "Globalism" will be replaced by "Americanism."

Trade and tax policies will be rewritten to provide incentives for companies to bring jobs and factories here. Was this not also Bernie Sanders' message? He stood against NAFTA in the 1990s when the Clintons colluded with Bush Republicans to impose it.

In his peroration, Trump spoke of what we Americans had done, how we had lost our way, but how we could, together, make her great again. His finale was surprisingly aspirational, hopeful, inclusive.

In the political year just ended, several unmistakable messages have been delivered. First, the record turnout for Trump and remarkable turnout for Ted Cruz represented a repudiation of Beltway Republicanism. Second, the amazing success of 74-year-old Socialist Bernie Sanders in keeping Clinton embattled until California, showed that the Democratic young have had enough of Clintonism.

A majority of the nation said loud and clear: We want change.

Hillary Clinton's vulnerability is that Americans distrust her; no one believes she represents change; and she has no agenda and no vision. Her campaign for president is all about her. As Trump noted, even her slogan is, "I'm with her."

Rough and raw as it was in parts, Donald Trump's speech on Wednesday contains the elements of a campaign that can win.

(Syndicated columnist Pat Buchanan has been a senior advisor to three presidents, twice a candidate for the Republican presidential nomination and the presidential nominee of the Reform Party in 2000. He won the New Hampshire Republican Primary in 1996.)

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