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The Lakeville Journal Opinion/Viewpoint

The real solution to Social Security, Medicare and the national debt

Insight

Aren’t we making undue heavy weather over the alleged solvency or insolvency of Social Security, Medicare and the nation? Are we not overlooking the obvious? Let’s have a closer look at the facts, and apply a few principles of democratic equity and fairness.

Social Security, introduced under FDR in 1935, fiercely defended by Eisenhower in 1956 and declared a sacred trust by Obama in 2011, is fully solvent, “in the black,” now and for two decades to come, even if we don’t tweak it.

Yes, we could raise the retirement age above 65; that’s a discussion worth having on its own merits.

Getting the job done for students

If You Ask Me

In his five years as superintendent of Hartford’s schools, all Steven Adamowski did was close bad schools, open small, specialized academies, institute longer school days, slash an expensive, unproductive bureaucracy, improve test scores, raise the high school graduation rate from an embarrassing 29 percent to 52 percent, put students in uniforms and fight with the teachers union.

Retire later rather than earlier

The Independent Investor

Over the last year, a number of baby boomers I know have explored the option of early retirement. Between the financial crises, the recession and the volatility of the stock markets, burnout has hit the over-60 crowd. They yearn for a less stressful life and believe that early retirement is the answer. My advice is don’t do it.

Segregation still strong in U.S. today

Other Words

William A. CollinsGood old Haley Barbour, governor of Mississippi. He helps keep life in perspective. When he defended Virginia Gov. Robert McDonnell’s infamous recollection of the Confederacy that somehow failed to mention slavery, Barbour called the issue a “nit” — an insignificant matter.

But while Barbour’s dismissive view of slavery may be popular in Mississippi — voters there elected him, after all — it’s a little raw for most of the country. One hundred and fifty years after the Civil War began, America’s entrenched segregation is more refined, but no less real.

Heading home

Nature's Notebook

Though summer is progressing, we can look forward to another several weeks of warm weather and all the activities that go with it. If you are like me, these activities include being outside as much as possible and enjoying what nature has to offer.

If you recall several columns back, I wrote about bird songs and how the woods and meadows come alive with the sounds of birds identifying and defending territory in which to raise their young.

That was only weeks ago, back in mid-May when our migratory songbirds returned from their wintering grounds to their nurseries.

Noteworthy milestones

The Lakeville Journal Editorial

It often takes an anniversary to recognize extraordinary commitment to service on the part of an organization. But it’s also human nature to take certain things for granted, either until they’re gone or until they have a milestone to celebrate. So it’s very good that a number of important area nonprofit groups are noting significant anniversaries this year. Organizations like these are examples of the best aspirations of those who live in and understand the more admirable ways of the Land of Steady Habits.

Young racers

Editorial Cartoon

Where redistricting meets ethics

If You Ask Me

Does it bother you that a candidate for Congress has a role in changing the district in which he’s running?

It’s happening in the 5th Congressional District. The candidate is House Speaker Christopher Donovan, who got himself a seat on the Reapportionment Committee that will redraw the lines of the five districts to reflect the population shifts in the 2010 census.

Redistricting for the 64th District should be done with Kent in mind

Guest Commentary

A t a recent meeting of concerned residents of Kent, including myself, the upcoming state assembly redistricting hearings were seen as an opportunity to align Kent with its logical neighbors.

My schlumpy raincoat inspired Columbo

Ranting Retiree

Now that the official eulogies have been paid to the late actor Peter Falk, it’s time to clear up one serious matter: the signature schlumpy raincoat he wore when playing the off-beat detective, Columbo.

In the past few years I have heard several people claim it was their raincoat that inspired him to adopt it as his never-ending article of clothing when tracking down bad guys — and an occasional female.

Not true. As anyone who knows me can testify, I am a paragon of un-neatness.