Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Sunday Globe Special: On Guard in Vermont

"Vt. National Guard reports 8 sex assaults" by Lisa Rathke Associated Press  January 17, 2016

MONTPELIER — Vermont National Guard members reported eight sexual assaults in fiscal 2015, with half of those occurring in previous years, according to a report released on Friday.

In only one case is a National Guard member accused.

The Guard is required by state law to provide a yearly report on sexual assaults, gender discrimination, and discrimination based on sexual orientation. The report is the third to date. Nationally, the US military is focusing on eliminating sexual assault in its ranks....


RelatedReports of sexual assaults spike at military academies

‘‘Unfortunately, this is a very hard problem to solve.’’According to the report documents reviewed by the AP, there were 91 reported sexual assaults over the last school year.

What they are NOT TELLING you is more than half are same sex assaults because that would spoil the image of the gay movement and lifestyle being purer and more good, not like dirty heterosexuals. 

And what about the children?

"Hundreds of military children sexually abused annually" Associated Press  January 04, 2016

WASHINGTON — Hundreds of children of service members are sexually assaulted each year, according to Defense Department records.

The abuse of military dependents is committed most often by male enlisted troops, the data show.

The figures offer greater insight into the sexual abuse of children committed by service members, a problem of uncertain scale due to a lack of transparency into the military’s legal proceedings.

With about 1 million military dependents, the number of cases — 1,584 — appears statistically small, but any episodes of abuse cast a pall over a profession that prides itself on honor.

An AP investigation in November found more inmates are in military prisons for child sex crimes than for any other offense....

Anybody call the DCF?


I suppose it is either that or shoot people.

Also see:

Missing dog spurs Vt. town to action

Vermont sees growth in food business

It's getting to be that time of day so where you want to order out to lunch?

"Applying 20 years of business lessons" by Steven Syre Globe Correspondent  January 15, 2016

I spent two decades at a desk at the Globe, writing columns that passed judgment on business people and their ventures. They were full of opinions about how some companies would succeed or why others were headed for trouble.

A fair question after all that time: Could you actually manage some kind of business of your own? Anything? Another way to put it: Shut up and try.

So I did. Actually, we did. My wife, Laura Raposa, and I opened The Foodsmith in Duxbury late last summer, as I was leaving the Globe. As a food service startup, it is a very small business but off to a pretty good start.

The Foodsmith is a bakery and upscale take-out lunch spot. Nearly five months after we opened our doors, it’s fair to say I’ve learned a thing or two.

Our most important basic: Customer service will make us or break us.

You should tell that to your former employer.

We serve delicious food made from scratch.

Is it GMO-free like Chipotle?

We created a bright, pleasant store for customers. But it’s still uncertain they will come back often — the kind of repeat business we need — without very high-touch customer service.

To us, this means knowing the names of our customers, the names of their children, and what everybody likes to eat. It also means identifying new customers who walk into our store for the first time and trying to make some kind of personal connection. If we make a mistake, we bend over backwards to fix it and make sure that customer is satisfied.

Like calling in staff to deliver papers?

It’s a simple idea that still takes effort, and the results aren’t always immediate. But over time, we’ve built a crowd of regulars who feel more like a community of customers. A few of them will visit more than once a day. The food is tasty and the place is comfortable, but it’s the service that should make it feel good to be here.

Here’s something else that has become clear in the last five months: Our little business world is a lot more unpredictable than I would have imagined. Things change or turn out differently than we expect. It’s important to recognize that quickly and adapt.

The lesson: Customers decide what business you’re in.

They also change their minds and shift preferences in more subtle ways. Some products fly off the counter for months and then stop selling for no obvious reason — everything from salmon BLTs to baked pumpkin doughnuts. The ability to meet heavy demand and then avoid the expense of unsold goods that have suddenly lost their popularity is an important skill.

The Foodsmith has been closed for vacation since New Year’s Day and will reopen Tuesday. The next two months will probably be the toughest stretch of business on the calendar....

I guess it is breakfast at McDonald's then.

What do you mean I can't get it now?


Believe it or not, the drive-through gave me the wrong meal.