Thursday, October 31, 2013

Time to Kill the Death Penalty

Last week the NH Coalition to Abolish the Death Penalty had a press conference to announce the kick-off of their new campaign to repeal the death penalty in New Hampshire. There was a large bi-partisan group of legislators and community leaders on hand to show their support for the measure. Repeal bills have been tried before. In 2000, both the Republican controlled House and Senate voted to repeal the death penalty, but Governor Jeanne Shaheen vetoed the bill. This year, it seems that the planets may be in the proper alignment. The repeal bill has the support of the faith community, some Democrats, some Republicans, and much of the libertarian crowd. It’s a strong group of supporters.

There are 32 states that still have the death penalty. Eighteen states have abolished it. Alaska abolished the death penalty in 1957, before they officially became a state in 1959. New Hampshire is the only remaining New England state that has not abolished capital punishment.

NH has a long and convoluted relationship with the death penalty. We’ve mostly been squeamish about it, about using it, which is a good thing.  In 1834, Governor William Badger was the first to ask for a repeal. In 1972, a US Supreme Court decision voided the NH death penalty. In 1974 the legislature passed a new statute. In 1976 the US Supreme Court reaffirmed the use of the death penalty. In 1977 the NH statute was changed to make execution an option not a mandate. In 1984, Governor Meldrim Thomson called a special legislative session to enact new legislation. In 1986, the law was changed to make lethal injection the primary method of execution, leaving hanging as an option.  Every two or four years some kind of tinkering with the statute takes place.

New Hampshire may be stubbornly clinging to the option, but we’ve never been vigorous practitioners. The first recorded execution was in 1739 and the last was in 1939. NH hanged 22 people in all, and one, Ruth Blay, is now regarded as having been executed wrongly. She was hanged in Portsmouth in 1768 for allegedly killing and concealing the body of her illegitimate infant. She hid the baby under the floorboards of a barn. At the time, concealment of the birth of an illegitimate child was a capital offense.

That’s the thing. Long before DNA, we were executing the wrong people some of the time. Since 1973 some 140 innocent people on death row have been exonerated. There have been many problems with capital cases over the years, including mistaken eyewitnesses, incompetent lawyers, unreliable informants, and coerced confessions. The very possibility of executing an innocent person should be enough to deter us. Unfortunately the moral high ground isn’t usually persuasive. Money usually is.

In 2009, the legislature established a Death Penalty Study Commission. A year later the majority voted to retain but not expand the death penalty. The committee agreed that the death penalty is more expensive than the alternatives. That has proven to be true. A death penalty sentence costs 3-5 times as much as life without parole. The state of NH has already spent about $5 million on the Addison case. That amount is expected to at least double by the time appeals are exhausted. At the press conference, retired Superior Court Chief Justice Walter Murphy wondered what sort of reaction legislators would get if they explained to constituents that there was a NH program that cost $1-2 million per year and the only people who get anything out of it are lawyers. The last budget passed delivered a $10 million cut to the judicial branch. That’s as much money for the whole state as the prosecution of just one case is expected to cost. So much for Yankee thrift.

                                            Justice Walter Murphy

There is no proof that the death penalty is a deterrent to crime. Few criminals consider the consequences before committing any crime, preferring to think that they’re too smart to get caught. Or in the heat of the moment the consequences don’t even occur to them.

The death penalty is presented to us as justice. An eye for an eye, a way of families getting closure. A case that drags on for years and years doesn’t allow for closure or healing. Some of the most eloquent speakers against capital punishment are family members of murder victims. Lead sponsor of the current repeal bill, Rep. Renny Cushing, is one of those eloquent speakers. (see below)  His father was murdered in 1988. A sentence of life without parole doesn’t disrespect the memory of murder victims. It protects the public while preventing any possibility of a mistake. It is a sentence that prevents the state from using violence in an attempt to prevent violent crime, which is as unsuccessful as killing for peace has proven to be.  Or, as Justice Murphy put it, “The Constitution of NH says nothing about retribution. It’s the Department of Corrections, not retribution.”

The bulk of executions in the United States take place in the south. Texas leads the way, having executed over 500 people since 1976. During that same time period there was precisely one execution in New England. It was in Connecticut. Yet despite this execution zeal, any one of the New England states have far less violent crime than any of the top execution states.

NH is consistently ranked as one of the safest states to live in. Given that we haven’t executed anyone since 1939, it’s safe to say that the death penalty isn’t what makes us safer. The group that has come together in opposition to capital punishment is impressively diverse. It’s time for NH to join the rest of our civilized New England brethren, and repeal the death penalty.

“Before my father’s murder I had evolved a set of values that included a respect for life and an opposition to the death penalty. For me to change my beliefs because my father was murdered would only give more power to his killers, for they would then take not only his life but also his main legacy to me: the values he instilled. The same is true for society. If we let murderers turn us to murder, we give them too much power. They succeed in bringing us to their way of thinking and acting, and we become what we say we abhor.”  ~  Renny Cushing


© sbruce 2013    Photos from October 24 press conference by sbruce

Also published as a bi-weekly oped column in the Conway Daily Sun newspaper. 

Pulling the Small Business Wool Over Voter's Eyes

Fergus Cullen was the Chair of the NH Republican Party from 2007 - 2008. He's managed campaigns, he's a paid columnist at the Union Leader, and now he's running for an at-large seat on the Dover City Council. This is his candidate biography:

The Fergus of 2007 had a house painting business. He was indeed a small business owner. The Fergus of 2013 left the painting biz a long time ago, but kept the claim of being a small businessman. 
Does a guy who is the Executive Director of a think tank in Connecticut (something he failed to mention in his bio) really qualify as a small businessman? The Yankee Institute of Public Policy  is a far right think tank, chummy with the Cato Institute and the Heritage Foundation. 

Perhaps Mr. Cullen wants us to consider his consulting business as small, even though it operates in two states:

Fergus Cullen Communications
152 Boxwood Lane, Dover, NH 03820
133 Allen Place, Hartford, CT 06106

Let us take just a moment to enjoy the GOP mindset. They love to rail against the "east coast elites" and their commie Ivy League colleges - yet so many of them attended those very same schools. Can that be what this is all about? Is Fergus trying to rid himself of the taint of poison Ivy by pretending to be a small business man o'the people?  It's true that the Yankee Institute of Public policy isn't doing well. Their funding was down by about $100,000 last year. They list 4 employees on their tax return - and maybe that's what Fergus is using to create the fiction - but a small business is not the same as a non-profit. Business, by definition is FOR profit. 

So, why the fiction, Fergus? 

Sunday, October 27, 2013

That Pesky Political Correctness

It's 10 days till the special election for the NH House in Nashua. As I've pointed out, there has been some controversy surrounding remarks made by candidate Pete Silva. He said that on the day of the primary election "I thought I was in New Delhi." His opponent is Latha Mangipudi, who is of Indian descent. His further comment about how Indian voters would be "coming out of the woodwork" to vote for Mangipudi seemed, to many, to carry the unappealing aroma of racism. Silva, and the NH GOP have been quite aggrieved since the story aired, bemoaning "political correctness." 

It has been my experience that people who complain bitterly about political correctness are people who miss the good old days of racial/ethnic, homophobic, or misogynistic slurs. Back when a broad was a broad, a fag was a fag, and a nigger, a kike, or a spic knew their place. Forgive me if I don't miss those days. Feel free to call me a bleeding heart - I just don't think we need to speak to each other with that kind of contempt and disrespect. 

In the Nashua Patch, Silva offers up some unrepentant attempts at justification:

"I'm standing by what I said, because people are turning it into something it isn't. If there had been a huge turnout of Italian voters, and someone said, 'It looks like Little Italy,' I wouldn't have a problem with that.

How generous. He might, however, have a problem if someone said "look at all the dagos, greaseballs, guineas, and wops crawling out of the Sicilian woodwork." I'm betting his disgust with political correctness might be tested by the use of ethnic slurs that apply to HIS background. 

Those words show contempt and a lack of respect. The same kind he displayed when speaking of Ms. Mangipudi and the voters in her district. 

His comments are inexcusable. 

There were 50 to 60 people there who heard what I said. I was a Majority Leader – I know how to speak in a group of people, and I wasn't trying to be guarded, because what I said was harmless," Silva said.

Silva was the House Majority Leader under former Speaker O'Brien. He was part of the O'Brien leadership team.  That alone should instill some fear into the voters of Nashua. That he thinks he knows how to speak in front of a group of people is certainly worrisome. Silva's refusal to apologize was stupid. By refusing, he's kept this story alive far longer than it needed to be. Unless he thinks he's going to win BECAUSE of those comments, the refusal to apologize is a big tactical error. Someday the NH GOP is going to want the immigrant community's votes. This isn't the way to get 'em. 

Monday, October 21, 2013

Tough Manly Men

My friend Tuck over at Miscellany Blue came across a conversation that some boys from the freedom and liberty crowd were having. One of the more notable aspects of the conversation is that they've been trying to stalk Tuck, and found an architect in Virginia with the same name - and you know what that means:

Yup. Tuck's the Highlander.

Despite a thorough mocking by Tuck, the discussion continues on, in some weird and unattractive directions.  It doesn't take much to get the boys all wound up about guns, and from guns to homophobia is just a step to the right.

As you can see, Rep. Burt has decided that Rep. Timothy Horrigan should go out shooting with him, and he links that to some of his buddies who begin to chime in:

After a brief detour the topic veers back to guns. (Apparently the Tuckanoia is on the back burner for now.)

Rep. Al Baldasaro opines: "Once Tim learns safety, than (sic) he fires a weapon, he may just toughen up and get rid of his wimpy talk."

Because firing guns is the very defining characteristic of manhood!  Tough, manly, gun totin' men don't engage in wimpy talk. By wimpy talk, I believe Baldasaro means any talk other than the kind of talk routinely engaged in by angry white conservative Republican men. Their talk seems to consist of guns, all the things they hate, and boobs. Not exactly the Algonquin Round Table. 

Then we have Representative Leon Rideout chiming in, with some homophobic attempts at jocularity about "Timmy or Tammy" needing to man up. Because Tough Manly Men make accusatory 'jokes' about men who don't fit their definition of "manly." Like guys who don't choose to wear a sidearm as a sort of modern day codpiece.

This is not the first time I've seen Rideout do the "Timmy/Tammy" thing on Facebook. It seems the 5th grade playground was so much fun for Leon Rideout that he chose to stay there forever.

Shooting a gun doesn't make you a man. Making comments that reek of homophobia about other men doesn't make you a man, either. It just makes you a jerk.

Friday, October 18, 2013

No Silva Lining for this Racist

Former NH State Representative Peter Silva is trying to win back his old seat in a November 5 special election that will be held in Nashua. Silva is a Republican. His opponent in the race is Latha Mangipudi, a Democrat of Indian descent. 

Pete Silva spoke at a Nashua Republican City Committee forum for Board of Alderman candidates. From the  Nashua Telegraph:

In what he later called an attempt to convince Republican voters to take the upcoming election seriously, Silva predicted Mangipudi could benefit from a large turnout of Indian voters, saying “they’ll be coming out of the woodwork” on voting day, Nov. 5.

Silva referenced the Sept. 17 primary, in which Mangipudi and Carl Andrade faced off for the Democratic nomination. “I thought I was in New Delhi,” he said, emphasizing the large turnout of Indian voters at the ward polling place, Bicentennial Elementary School.

Ward 8 has a large population of residents that are of Asian and Indian descent. Apparently Silva's not courting their votes. 

Silva insists his comments were aimed at rallying Republicans to not take the Nov. 5 election lightly. “The fact is, if (Republicans) are gong to take this election lackadaisically, then we’re going to lose. My comments were made to make people aware there’s a tide against us this time.”

And he was offering no apologies.

That sounds honest to me. He was using racist commentary to gin up the fears of his fellow Republicans to get them to go out and vote for him. The fear of the "tide" of scary brown folks. At least he's not pretending to be anything other than what he is. Racist. 

Naturally, there were people who called Silva out for his comments. He remains unrepentant:

Silva accused his detractors of “political correctness” and for spinning reality.
“It’s amazing how people can spin things. Fifty or 60 people (at the forum) heard this in context. This politically correct stuff has got to go,” he said.

One can't help but wonder - what kind of context could have justified his comments. If they'd all been wearing white robes and pointy hoods maybe? 

Photo from Carol Robidoux at Nashua Patch. Silva was a Perry supporter - which makes him even more mockworthy. 

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Government by the Petulant

The government shutdown has ended and the possible default has been averted. For now. We’ll be going through democracy-by-hostage-taking again in just a few months. The Republicans have ample time to figure out their next round of demands. (Make me a sammich or we’ll shut down the gummint!) The Tea Partiers were ready to play Russian roulette with the global economy just because they hate Obama. The next time the US tries to impose democracy on some other country, the rest of the world is going to laugh in our collective faces. And they should.

This shutdown was brought to us by the party of fiscal and personal responsibility. That’s $24 billion of our tax dollars wasted by a bunch of 3rd grade playground bullies stomping their expensively shod feet about a law they don’t like. These are not statesmen, doing the work of the people. These are petulant and vindictive men who were willing to make the whole world pay because they didn’t get their way. This is why any person running for any office (local, state, national) who says they hate gummint should be immediately and permanently disqualified.

Will the party of fiscal and personal responsibility be taking up a collection to reimburse the taxpayers for the $24 billion? Don’t hold your breath. The poor lambs planned the shutdown for months, and then got miffed when a shutdown meant actually shutting things down. One take away from all this? We should really stop waiting for Texas to secede and take preemptive action. If they want to elect dunderheads like Ted Cruz, Randy Neugebauer, and Louis Gohmert to state government that would be one thing, but sending them to DC where they can mess with all of us? Sorry, Texas. This just can’t be allowed to go on.

As for GOP fiscal responsibility, we’re seeing it right here at home. The 2014 legislative session will begin in January, where they will have 638 bills to contend with. So far. The Senate cut off for filing LSRs is October 30, so we can count on a last minute flurry of filings. The average cost of an LSR (legislative request/potential bill) is $1500. Representative JR Hoell, of Dunbarton, is this year’s winner in the most bills filed category, at 21. That’s 21 bills, at a cost of $1500 each – Representative Hoell is going to cost NH taxpayers $31,500. Given that he’s a remarkably ineffectual legislator, we can be sure that few if any of these 21 bills will be passed.  In 2013 Hoell sponsored 12 bills. None of them passed.

Hoell is not a member of the Free State Project, but he’s the next best thing. He’s part of the extremist libertarian crowd. They worship at the altar of Koch, Rand, and Paul (pere et fils.) They hate gummint, so they work tirelessly to become part of it. To show their contempt, they file endless nuisance legislation, to waste the time of their colleagues, and taxpayer dollars. They claim to hate wasteful spending, but they do it themselves at every opportunity. They also claim to hate the nanny state, but they are desperate to play stern patriarch to the uterus bearing population of NH. A sardonic tweet the other day (from an observer of the nanny state uterus brigade) read: “It’s not uterYOU, it’s uterUS.” To summarize Hoell’s bills, he wants everyone, everywhere to have unrestricted access to guns, wants to eliminate the judiciary and the police, and he wants women to serve as involuntary incubators. He might want to rethink giving the involuntary incubators unrestricted access to guns.

Coming in at 19 LSRs is Rep. Dan Itse, from Freemont. That’s $28,500 worth of taxpayer waste. Itse is another extreme libertarian, not a Free Stater, but certainly an ally. Many of Itse’s bills are aimed at ensuring that food produced in NH is exempted from the Food Safety and Modernization Act. These folks hate gummint regulation, and feel that in the free market, you should be able to choose for yourself what you buy. If you want to buy contaminated food, that should be your decision. If you buy it unknowingly and get sick or die, well, next time you won’t buy from that guy!

Itse also wants to recodify education laws, laws relative to law enforcement personnel, and wants to eliminate proprietorships from the business enterprise tax. He also wants to prevent students from voting. The extreme libertea crowd hates law enforcement and hates the judiciary. They sympathize with the crowd of whiny wife beaters who feel hard done by that they have to pay child support, but they don’t get full custody. Still, this year Itse made an effort to reel himself in. Last year he sponsored 42 LSRs, at an estimated cost of $63,000. Not a single one of them passed. I’m sure we’re all happy to know that fiscal conservatives like Itse and Hoell are looking out for us.

There are at least a dozen gun bills proposed, because, after all, in a state with 500 bridges that are on a red list for structural impairment, the only possible solution is guns and more guns. The unemployment rate is at a firm 5%, and obviously the best way to deal with that is GUNS!

The northern Carroll County delegation has managed to comport itself with admirable restraint. No one has filed an epic number of bills, no gun bills, or anything that (so far) seems like nuisance legislation. A pity that can’t be said of the legislators from the southern part of the state. We sell the good people of Massachusetts cheap booze and cigarettes, mock them for being socialists, and they thank us by sending their misanthropes to populate southern NH where they run for the legislature. Massachusetts gets the last laugh.

“This is your democracy, America. Cherish it.”  Charlie Pierce

© sbruce 2013 
Published as a bi-weekly column in the Conway Daily Sun newspaper. 

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Give us this day....

(Mike) Lee serves the same function as an alleged "constitutional scholar," although the available evidence seems to indicate that his understanding of the document in question stalled out at a point half-past the Missouri Compromise.


Along with Tailgunner Ted Cruz, Lee was one of the presiding geniuses behind the strategy of using the budget process to defund the Affordable Care Act, a brainstorm from which even the Koch Brothers are fleeing as fast as their cloven hooves can carry them.

Saturday, October 05, 2013

NHGOP Clown Car Trolling Twitter

Some people started a twitter snit, and included me. One of them was the ever calm and even tempered State Rep. Al Baldasaro, and another was State Representative Leon Rideout. 

Let me say that again. State Representative. This man is an elected official, and this is a sample of what he tweeted me: 

To paraphrase the great Charlie Pierce, "This is your legislature, New Hampshire.  Cherish it." 

As an aside - every vote counts in state elections. Leon Rideout beat Evalyn Merrick (who never tweeted out anything like this) by just 34 votes. 

Sluts or Nuts - NH Rep. Burt's Take on Women

It all started with a Facebook conversation about the government shutdown. As I wrote about earlier this week, NH State Representative John Burt is a fan of the shutdown. 

It wasn't my FB page, and so I've carefully done screengrabs that only document the conversation between Representative Burt and myself. 

Apparently women were supposed to be grateful that they were chattel. Yippee! 

Representative Burt demonstrates his brand of feminism: 

   This was the end of the dialogue:

I run into this sort of thing a lot. Apparently I'm not appropriately grateful for the stern patriarchs who are attempting to exercise their God given right to rule the female reproductive system. 

This was a new twist though. A duly elected state representative from the town of Goffstown has given us a great deal of insight into his views on women. 

We now that any woman who is audacious enough to think she has a right to medical privacy and bodily autonomy must want to "lay with 100 men a night." He wasn't quite stupid enough to use the term "slut" or "whore" but the inference is clear. 

In fact - a woman audacious enough to think she has the right to medical privacy and bodily autonomy must want to marry her dog! Because only sluts and nuts want to wrest control of their uteruses away from Republican men, amirite? 

As you can also see, Rep. Burt offered up that claim about women marrying dogs as if it were the gospel truth. When pressed, he couldn't find a single case of a woman wanting to do any such thing. He wasn't honest enough to admit that, though. 

He also tried to make it sound as if his opposition to contraception or abortion had only to do with taxpayer money, but given his voting record, that just isn't so. 

Granite State Progress compiled  report cards from the 2011/2012 legislative session. Representative Burt voted against women's health at every opportunity. 

He voted to repeal insurance coverage for midwives. He voted to repeal insurance coverage for contraception. He voted to allow employers to discriminate on the basis of their religion and not cover contraception for their female employees. He voted in favor of a bill that would have forced doctors to give dishonest information to women seeking abortions - including the debunked link between abortion and breast cancer. Governor Lynch vetoed a bill that would ban abortion even when a woman's life was in jeopardy. 

John Burt voted to override the veto. He'd prefer that a woman die rather than get an abortion that would save her life. 

Let's summarize. He doesn't think your insurance company should cover contraception. (But Viagra, Cialis, penis pumps, and implants are routinely covered by insurance. That's different!)
He doesn't want you to have midwife coverage if you get pregnant. And if your pregnancy puts your life at risk - he wants you to die.

Why would any woman vote for this man? He can scarcely conceal his contempt for us.  

h/t to Granite State Progress for the legislative report cards. 

Thursday, October 03, 2013


I grew up during the low-tech days of record albums. My dad had a big music collection. He loved jazz, swing, and the big bands. I grew up listening to Duke Ellington, Glenn Miller, and Errol Garner. And every now and then he’d pull out the music he loved the most – the bagpipes. He especially delighted in playing one of those albums on mornings when we were getting up for ski trips. My sister and I, sleeping like little stones, screamed in horror at the assault on our tender little ears when he put on some pipe and drum band and turned the volume up to full blast in order to wake us up.

Dad really did have a sadistic streak. He loved the old wooden hotels of the White Mountains and would take us on an old wooden hotel tour every summer. We would stop and marvel at Gray’s Inn (my favorite) and the pre-renovation Wentworth. Dad would give us a rundown on the history of each one.  Eventually we’d make our way up to the Mt. Washington, and go up and around and come back down through Berlin. The paper mills were still booming. It was before pollution controls. It was before air conditioning was a standard feature in cars. We would scream in horror at the assault on our tender little noses, and beg Dad to put up the windows. He would smirk as he drove through Berlin. The only thing that would have made his delight complete would have been the ability to play a bagpipe album at the same time, but sadly (for him) that technology was years away. 

Dad was never able to infect us with his enthusiasm for the music of our ancestors. An amateur history buff, he had a number of books on the history of Scotland, and our clan. All Bruces claim kinship to King Robert, the legendary freedom fighter. As a snotty teenager, I thought the music was awful and the food sounded worse. Haggis – OMG! And that was before I knew what it smelled like.

My father died in 1998, in the hospice wing of Exeter hospital. The hospice nurses were wonderful to us all, and suffered through hours of bagpipes droning away from my father’s room, with big smiles, pretending it was great.

It is.

I don’t know when it all changed for me, but in 2002, I found myself dragging David Emerson to the Highland Games at Loon Mountain. David had not grown up with exposure to the bagpipe, and couldn’t possibly have been prepared for all that awaited him that day. He bravely faced down all that plaid, and all that sound. He watched the tossing of the caber with delight. David marched off to the food tent, and came back saying words I never thought I’d ever hear strung together in a sentence: “They’re out of haggis.” We found a small band of wild men (and one wild woman) lurking in a corner playing loud drums and pipes. It was loud, tribal, and completely irresistible. I bought their CD. It was the first of what has become a small collection of bagpipe CDs. There is always at least one in the car, and usually more like half a dozen.

This year I hadn’t planned on going to the Games. I had several other commitments. Then a friend won tickets to the first day, and called and very generously asked me to join her. I got out my clan sash, and polished my father’s sterling silver clan badge. Wally would have giggled at thought of me with a clan sash. Add a clan badge, bagpipe CDs in the car, and a trip to Lincoln and he would have been clutching his sides and weeping with laughter. He and David are the ghosts whom I bring to the joyous celebration of all things Scot and many things Not. My ghosts were surely amused that I drove home through the fiery fall hills -  half deaf from being in the front of the stage while Albannach played just before we left.

Back in 2002, I spoke with the Bruce clan chief about the family motto: Fuimus, which means, “We were.” That sounded a little defeatist, I told him. Couldn’t we add “and we still are – or we might be again?” He just laughed at me – but surely the descendents of King Robert deserve better. (That holds true for the tartan as well.) Thanks to Braveheart (and its highly romanticized version of history) everyone loves King Robert. John McCain tried to claim that he was a descendent of Robert The, back in 2008 when he was running for president. His claim was speedily (and mockingly) debunked.

I don’t know when it all changed for me, but when my daughter and I go to visit the cemetery where my family is buried, we visit all of the graves, and usually have some offbeat offerings to leave at Wally’s grave – small toy tractors or trucks. And we park the car as close as we can to where my father is buried, and we roll down all the windows, open the sunroof and all of the doors and put on a bagpipe CD and turn the volume up as high as it will go.

Can the sound of those loud bagpipes reach all the way into the afterlife where my father can hear them? There is, of course, no way to know.

It doesn’t matter. What matters is that while we are there we’re telling stories, we’re remembering, and he’s there with us for a while. We laugh. We cry a little. We remember – and we take a little of him with us when we go.

© sbruce 2013
published as a biweekly column in the Conway Daily Sun newspaper

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Yay Shutdown!

There are many NH House members who are overjoyed about the government shutdown. Most of them have had the sense to keep their glee out of the public eye. 

After all, when they cheer the shutdown, they're cheering that the Saint Gaudens National Park in Cornish is closed right now - during peak foliage. They're cheering that the Forest Service is closed, during peak foliage. Oh, the woods are still open - but not the welcome centers, or the bathrooms. Nothing says welcome to NH like a locked bathroom. 

When they cheer the shut down, they're cheering for all of the small business people who may have trouble getting an SBA loan. Or the people who won't be able to get FHA loans to buy new homes. 

They're cheering the Head Start programs that will close. They're cheering the women who won't be able to get WIC (Women, Infants, Children) supplemental food assistance. Nothing says "GOP, Party of Life" like cutting babies off from infant formula. 

And most of them kept it off their FB pages. But not all:

Not only is Representative John Burt of Goffstown happy that the government has shut down - he thinks those low income infants shouldn't get any formula till February. 

Nothing says Freedumb and Libertea like taking food away from babies!