Basement Medicine

A note from the editor

Kayla Friedrich, Editor in Chief

February 10, 2015

With the four semi-finalists in the search for JSC’s next president having completed the interview process, presentations with students, staff, and faculty, and with the online opinion forms, submitted by the JSC community, the presidential search committee decided on Monday, Feb. 2, that Dr. Elaine...


Tom Benton

September 24, 2014

Special mention of the article at the top of page 12, about a JSC student fighting leukemia. The student’s name is Scott Prescott. His family has created a fundraising page at It’d be wonderful if you’d donate whatever you can, 25 cents, $1, $10. Anything helps. Here in the northeast,...

S.H.A.P.E. pool closing would be a sad loss to the community

Katie Black

May 8, 2014

I am a huge advocate for keeping the Johnson State College pool running. I am willing to organize fund raising and contribute my effort to keep the pool running. As an Alumni of JSC, I used the pool for many years as a student and continue to support the use of the pool! I transferred to JSC in the...


Thomas Benton

May 8, 2014

This is the end. End of the semester. The psychotically erratic weather helped masked its end, but it’s over. End of my tenure as Basement Medicine editor. Thanks for reading. End of the college swimming pool. End of workable budgets. End of faculty and staff. BM rep...

A Note Before the Trustee Vote

Tom Benton, Editor-in-Chief

February 20, 2014

Depending on when you read this, the Board of Trustees will vote or voted on a tuition increase for the Vermont State Colleges on Feb. 20. A trustees’ committee recommended that tuition stay the same on Feb. 13 in Montpelier. They voted the entire student body of the Vermont State Colleges into a hunger...

Boffo Internet

Tom Benton, Editor-in-Chief

February 6, 2014

What a surprise that the Bible was correct in its fingering Y2K as the End. The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse have indeed been riding, although not as much as they once did, since they’re in their seventies, and I think it’s harsh to consider Fred Koch as destructive as his brothers. Judgment...

Editorial: GNH

Tom Benton, Editor-in-Chief

November 14, 2013

  I just read a scary thing. At this rate, the number of Americans out of work will surpass the number of employed Americans in four years. Four years. Our labor-force participation rate is 62.8 per cent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. That’s the lowest it’s been since 19...

Editorial: regarding the government shutdown

Tom Benton, Editor-in-Chief

October 17, 2013

I’ve heard a lot about how the government shutdown could have been avoided if Republicans just accepted that Obamacare’s here, it’s too late, and I’ve heard the Republicans say that if the Democrats hadn’t approved Obamacare, Satan’s doorway into the United States, this wouldn’t have been...


Tom Benton

September 25, 2013

First I’d like to say you’re a beautiful audience, you three who read my editorials. This may be my last. I’m afraid I’ll be assassinated over my obnoxiously and gracelessly satiric VSO critique, which, I hope is clear, is more of a critique of classical music than of the VSO. If I see a well-...


Tom Benton

September 11, 2013

The legendary pool shark Don Eaton pointed out to me that the Associated Press has been running stories regarding a potential U.S. military strike on Syria with headlines like "U.S. Faces Opposition in Congress on Syria Strike." Such a headline sets off my bullshit detector--and I bet, when you look at it, ...


Tom Benton

May 3, 2013

A quick note on the passing of Karleigh Baumann. I wasn’t close with Karleigh. She was a friend of my friends. She was around, I was around. We drank and laughed in the same company. She was quiet and polite, but she had a pulsing personality. I saw her take crap from people with grace and poise,...

April Showers Bring May Flowers: A rhyme by T. F. Benton

Tom Benton

April 18, 2013

April has the highest suicide rate Of any month in this state. It’s hard to imagine anything being great After six months bleak as slate. Then there were the bombs in Boston Which were so awful I won’t make it rhyme.   But the temperature, a.k.a. the eternal freeze Has climbed outta the...


Thomas Benton

March 28, 2013

  , too late. There’s a theory that no one reads these editorials. (It’s mine.) Maybe it’s because many of them are haphazard word floods undammed by deadline. Too little, too late.T Maybe no one cares. Note that I’m not clutching my tear-soaked hanky as I write this. Just wondering. Well, if my surreal ...

Town Meeting Day is coming up

Tom Benton, Editor-in-Chief

February 22, 2013

Town Meeting Day is coming up. That sentence causes anxiety attacks, depression and irritable bowels for those stalwart souls who’ve made it their duty to stand up on Town Meeting Day, Mar. 5, and tell us what the heck’s going on behind the town curtain. It’s the day when all the little Oz’s...

Why We Need Journalism

Thomas Benton

February 7, 2013

 You missed more than Jerry Mitchell if you missed Mr. Mitchell’s presentation Feb. 4. We described Mitchell’s presentation on page 2, and there’s a Q&A with Mitchell on the back page. Please read those. Then go online. Look him up on Wikipedia. Look up his articles. And read them. He’s a heck of a w...


Tom Benton, Editor-in-Chief

December 6, 2012

I’ve been so stressed about semester’s-end duties my hair’s turning gray, I’m pulling it out and it burns when I pee. That last symptom might not be connected. I know I’m not alone, so far as semester’s-end stress goes. Start with deep breathing. Be your breath. Then come sit on your...

Twilight Zone

Tom Benton

November 15, 2012

We are now entering the twilight zone. We have a matter of weeks until the end of this semester. This is the time when twilight’s slim gleam shines over the horizon, and it’ll grow if you’ll nurture it. I know you don’t have time to change your routine, not at this time of the semester, not when...

Get Thee to a Voting Booth

Tom Benton, Editor-in-Chief

November 1, 2012

Think again if you think there’s no point for you to vote in this election. If a third of the population thinks, “What am I gonna do about it? Let everyone else vote,” a third of the population doesn’t vote. A third of the population watches flood tides coming toward town and lets everyone else...

Leave it to the Jury

Tom Benton, Editor-in-Chief

September 12, 2012

It doesn’t read "We, the Jury" under the Basement Medicine masthead. It’s a Bob Dylan quote. In the spirit of that quote, today we’re on the pavement thinking about confidentiality. The issue of confidentiality has been all too evident on the Johnson State College campus. It’s been as frustrat...

Full Circle

Tom Benton, Editor-in-Chief

May 3, 2012

Oh, shit. Talk about full circle. The first editorial of this semester discussed the importance of fighting SOPA, the Stop Online Piracy Act, a bill which would have severely limited Internet freedoms. (It’s back, by the way, in the form of the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, or CISPA,...

I Was Wrong

Tom Benton

April 12, 2012

  I was wrong. I wrote a large piece on Bruce Springsteen’s new album, “Wrecking Ball,” which was published last edition, and even there was significantly edited from its initial gargantuan incarnation. I lamented the loss of the Boss’s specific human stories, and cried for the Bruce...

Spring Eternal

Tom Benton, Editor-in-Chief

March 22, 2012

Boy, did you feel that? That was a warm, spring breeze. Used to be it might start turning 60 degrees in mid-April if we were lucky. Now it’s just past mid-March and we’re having 70- to 80-degree days. Don’t know where they’re coming from, maybe global warming, but hey, que sera, sera – I’m...

It’s time for the talk.

Tom Benton, Editor-in-Chief

March 8, 2012

  It’s time for the talk. Maybe you’ve experienced it. Maybe you’ve just heard about it from your overzealous friends. Whether one has experienced it first- or second-hand, there’s no doubt it’s one’s chance to go deep into what matters – one’s loved ones. So let’s talk...

Reminders for February

Tom Benton, Editor in Chief

February 16, 2012

If seasons were lovers, February might be the Faye Dunaway of the group. Not “Chinatown” Faye Dunaway, either – more like the cold, mood-swinging, psychopathic “Mommy Dearest” Faye Dunaway. If you let her, February will let you slide the wrong way down the slippery slope of progress and wave...

We kicked SOPA’S ass

Tom Benton, Editor-in-Chief

February 2, 2012

We kicked SOPA’s ass. SOPA was the Stop Online Piracy Act, a bill to – you guessed it – stop online piracy, chiefly but not only illegal downloads of movies and music. It is a problem, in that the artists behind the illegally downloaded movies and music aren’t getting paid for their work when...

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