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Great article Matty . . RIP Coach Koch! Tom M, UMass '72 ...(full comment)

Matt Vautour: Coach Sam Koch dedicated life to UMass men’s soccer program

I agreed that Gaza should be set free. Yes, it should be liberated from the Islamist Hamas regime that seeks to kill Israelis (including Jews, Christians, Muslims, Bahai and non-believers) by launching rockets at Israeli cities and towns. When Israel left Gaza in 2005, the Palestinians had a free territory, and hundreds of millions of dollars from Europe and the United States, to build a strong economy and a civil society. Indeed, liberal Jewish foreign donors even spent 40 million dollars to buy very productive greenhouses from departing Israeli citizens to give them to the Palestinians. This would allow the Palestinians to have a very productive agricultural operation for export to Europe. In true fashion, as soon as the Israeli Jews left, the Palestinians destroyed the greenhouses. Then the Palestinians violently expelled Fatah and elected the anti-Semtic and anti-Progressive Hamas regime. Hamas used its massive foreign aid to build a terror fortress, instead of building schools, homes and hospitals. Now Hamas had adopted a cynical strategy of using Palestinians as human shields to protect their rocket launchers and arms depots built in neighborhoods. Unfortunately, for both the Palestinians and Israelis, Hamas and its supporters are a violent Islamist cult that spreads bloodshed. Yes, Gaza should be freed from Hamas. It is a pity that the pathetic self-styled radicals in Northhampton are too myopic to realize that they are supporting a reactionary, homophobic, and violent regime that they could not tolerate for five minutes. Meanwhile, Israel is the only progressive, multicultural and democratic nation in the Mideast. We all know that Israel is the only mideast country in which our progressive friends would ever want to live. ...(full comment)

Demonstration in Northampton against Israel’s Gaza campaign

How wrong you are; it is my business when you choose to partially to eliminate birth control choice of one gender over the other under the umbrella of religion. Just because the majority of men on the bench ruled in favor of Hobby Lobby, doesn't make it right, just sadly pathetic. ...(full comment)

Charles LaPiene: Liberal reaction to Hobby Lobby 'hysterical' 'Why place the burden on me for their choice?

My fracking investment closed up 2% today and is only a few pennies off its all time high. Just wanted to let ya'll know. I'll be retiring in Florida with my millions soon while you guys sit here in the dark freezing under your windmills. Market Vectors Unconventl Oil & Gas ETF (FRAK) -NYSEArca Follow $33.68 +0.69(+2.09%) 4:00PM EDT ...(full comment)

Gubernatorial candidate Berwick says no to Tennessee Gas Pipeline project

I have seen Don speak and I questioned him recently about the pipeline. I am confident that he is the best candidate, especially for the environment and against the pipeline. Amherst Media just interviewed him yesterday - you should watch it. ...(full comment)

Gubernatorial candidate Berwick says no to Tennessee Gas Pipeline project

Perhaps his bail should be set a little higher this time? ...(full comment)

Update: Man accused of Northampton library arson, Hadley cayenne pepper attack, lost his Easthampton home to fire earlier this month

There is no way to ensure this can't happen again. There are a lot of people with "issues" and Forbes Library is seen as a safe haven for a large number of those individuals on a daily basis. The general public is not aware of that, but it's true. The staff, trained to be librarians, deal with incidents all the time. Better community solutions, including safe places to be warm, sleep, access the internet, wash clothes, etc. for those with "issues" would take the burden off the libraries, which are tax-payer funded. This should be seen as an indication that such drop-in spaces need to be created in the Northampton community to prevent this kind of spill-over into the public spaces that we value. Don't judge, however. This could have been the work of a veteran with PTSD or someone's unfortunate teen with a social disorder. We just don't know. ...(full comment)

Backstory: Arson suspected in Forbes Library fire; damage estimated at $5,000

This story is upsetting. Kudos to the Mr. Toczydlowski and the patron who put out the fire quickly before too much damage could be done. I'm sad to learn that beautiful banister is damaged and that the massive second floor collection is off limits. I take this attack on this wonderful public resource to heart. ...(full comment)

Backstory: Arson suspected in Forbes Library fire; damage estimated at $5,000

Typical Noho / Mass business rules - let a minority control the majority. But, as the lawsuit progresses, the BID may find that compulsory membership (and fees) will not be found constitutional. ...(full comment)

MAP Northampton BID vote forces 150 property owners to become paying members; fees reduced by 50 percent

Small class sizes and the special things that Norris is able to do is what makes Southampton a desirable place to live and send children to school. Of course kids will survive in classes bigger than 20, but why do you think so many people school of choice their kids to Norris? It's one of the things that makes it special. ...(full comment)

Anne Monahan: Southampton has spoken on local tax matters

The arson incident at Forbes Library should concern all of us who care deeply about our public library. I visit Forbes on a weekly basis to check out books, attend programs, visit the art gallery, or to access the fine video collection. I know many of the staff by name. Forbes is our cultural commons and an architectural treasure. I feel as if my own home has been vandalized and I'm worried that it could happen again. What kind of person starts a fire in a public library? How can we help make sure this doesn't happen again? ...(full comment)

Backstory: Arson suspected in Forbes Library fire; damage estimated at $5,000

P.S. I would very much LIKE to be able to vote for Dr. Berwick, but the ambiguity of all of this gives me serious concern. ...(full comment)

Gubernatorial candidate Berwick says no to Tennessee Gas Pipeline project