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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Baruth: About Those Pirates
Friday, 04/24/09
By Philip Baruth
Free and back home after his time as a hostage, Captain Richard Phillips will be the guest of honor at a picnic this weekend in Underhill. But Commentator Philip Baruth is convinced that unfortunately the story of the Somali pirates is far from complete.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Baruth: In the Kingdom of Facebook
Thursday, 04/09/09
By Philip Baruth
The social networking software Facebook hit its peak of popularity about two years ago.  Which means that Commentator Philip Baruth just found out about it a few weeks ago.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Baruth: Tow truck philosophy
Friday, 03/13/09
By Philip Baruth
According to the old African proverb, it takes a village to raise a child.  But that’s nothing:  it takes an entire city to keep Commentator Philip Baruth’s aging family car on the highway.  Here’s Philip
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Baruth: Plundering the Christmas Tree
Friday, 02/06/09
By Philip Baruth
For Swedes, Christmas lasts forever. In Commentator  Philip Baruth’s house, Christmas ended officially only a few days  ago. But it went out with a very unsettling bang - at least for Philip.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Baruth: How do I live without Bush?
Wednesday, 01/14/09
By Philip Baruth
George W. Bush is scheduled to leave the White House on the 20th of January, and no one will miss him more than the nation’s political satirists. Commentator Philip Baruth, for instance, is already in mourning. Here’s Philip.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Cut it Yourself
Wednesday, 12/24/08
By Philip Baruth
Once upon a time, Commentator Philip Baruth drove out to a place where you can cut your own Christmas Tree. He will never do it again, even if you offer him lots of money. Here’s Philip.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Recession
Monday, 12/08/08
By Philip Baruth
With news that America has been officially in recession for the last year, Commentator Philip Baruth feels somehow as though he’s moving back to the very early 90’s, when the last serious down-turn began to ease, and he was lucky enough to land a job at the University of Vermont.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Races
Monday, 11/17/08
By Philip Baruth
The end of Election 2008 hit everyone a little bit differently.  For various reasons, it took Commentator Philip Baruth back to a moment when he was twelve years old, running his first sled-dog race.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Oct 2 2008
Thursday, 10/02/08
By Philip Baruth
With Halloween just around the corner, commentator Philip Baruth has been doing some soul-searching. Or maybe All-Souls-searching is a better way to put it.
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VPR News
Actor's presence at convention a missed news story
Monday, 09/08/08
Commentator Philip Baruth was an Obama delegate to the Democratic Natinoal Convention, and had a front-row seat for all the action. But he says the news story that has stayed with him is one the national media never reported.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Birth Rate Blues
Monday, 08/25/08
By Philip Baruth
In its most recent study, the US Census Bureau reported that Vermont had the nation's second lowest rate of fertility. Predictably enough, the news has sent Commentator Philip Baruth into a tailspin of depression. Here's Philip.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Wee Adventure
Tuesday, 08/12/08
By Philip Baruth
Recently, Commentator Philip Baruth traveled to Sweden to spend some time with his wife’s family there. As always, he felt physically smaller surrounded by the descendents of Vikings. But, this time around, that feeling of smallness led to some unusually large problems.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: The Unbearable Realness of Wall-E
Monday, 07/07/08
By Philip Baruth
For Commentator Philip Baruth, summer blockbusters are like Christmas fruitcakes: not very enjoyable, but at least they let you know what month it is.  Philip went to see Pixar's animated tale Wall-E and found it just so-so.  That is, until life began to imitate art.  And then he had the time of his life.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: The Case for Leahy
Thursday, 06/12/08
By Philip Baruth
With the Democratic nomination finally in hand, Barack Obama last week created an informal committee to help sift the names of potential running mates. Vermont Senator Pat Leahy has apparently agreed to lend a hand. But commentator Philip Baruth, himself an early supporter and now an Obama delegate to the Democratic National Convention, believes that Leahy could easily play a more central role.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: The Road
Monday, 05/19/08
By Philip Baruth
Commentator Philip Baruth is a novelist who teaches at the University of Vermont. He got off to an early start on his summer reading list this year, only to confront a book powerful enough, and bleak enough, to shadow an entire summer.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Multitudes and a Torch
Tuesday, 04/22/08
By Philip Baruth
Commentator Philip Baruth’s Vermont, whatever else might be said about it, is a very strange place. Today he imagines confronting the Olympic torch, and all of the political contradictions now implicit within it.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Financial Aid?
Wednesday, 04/02/08
By Philip Baruth
Commentator Philip Baruth is a novelist who teaches at the University of Vermont. When his older brother died, he offered to help his nephew with applications for college and financial aid - and he was appalled by what he learned. But there’s a hint of a silver lining: Vermont’s Freshman Congressman has been very much on the case.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Three Birches
Thursday, 03/13/08
By Philip Baruth
The recent ice storm, like all storms, brought down some things and not others. Commentator Philip Baruth, a novelist who teaches at UVM, woke to find that the ice had fallen heaviest on one of his birch trees - the one he's always worried over the most.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Basking
Tuesday, 02/26/08
By Philip Baruth
For complex reasons having to do with frontloaded primaries and competing slates of superdelegates, Vermont’s Democratic Primary seems certain to actually matter, this time around. Commentator Philip Baruth is a novelist who teaches at the University of Vermont, and he's loving it, so much so that he'd like to offer a modest proposal for keeping this new feeling alive.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Libraries and the E-State
Monday, 01/28/08
By Philip Baruth
Commentator Philip Baruth is a novelist who teaches at the University of Vermont, and he’s a strong supporter of Governor Douglas’s "E-State Initiative" - a proposal to provide universal broadband and cellular coverage within Vermont’s borders. But without libraries to close the digital divide, Philip argues, the E in "E-State" could very well come to stand for "Exclusive."
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Best of Breed
Friday, 01/11/08
By Philip Baruth
Commentator Philip Baruth is a novelist who teaches at UVM. Recently, over a two-day stretch, he took in a Burlington Cat Show - and spent time in a hotel crowded with national media in New Hampshire. Only eventually could he make out any difference at all between the two.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Green Mountain Roids
Friday, 12/28/07
By Philip Baruth
In light of the Mitchell Report on steroids, the Rutland Herald polled coaches and trainers in Vermont - and found that the problem was not widespread in the state. But the poll led commentator Philip Baruth to imagine a scenario worthy of Jose Canseco: what if the Presidential candidates in New Hampshire all used steroids, and Vermont was the source of their Juice?
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Vonnegut's Book
Monday, 12/10/07
By Philip Baruth
When Kurt Vonnegut died in April, something died in Commentator Philip Baruth too. But the other night he discovered a rare Vonnegut paperback at his local supermarket, and that has made all the difference.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: Traumatic Turkey Memories
Wednesday, 11/21/07
By Philip Baruth
These days Commentator Philip Baruth spends Thanksgiving in a big dining room full of food and family. But, when he was growing up, his Thanksgivings didn't always come so easy. Sometimes he had to fight for his turkey.
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Commentaries
Commentary Series: New Pair of Shoes
Tuesday, 10/30/07
By Philip Baruth
Commentator Philip Baruth’s daughter loves pizza arcades, but over the last five years Philip has seen quite a few of them go through a slow transformation - and not for the better.
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