Wednesday, February 6, 2013
Amesh A. Adalja writes the governor's plan has the best chance at success by returning government to its "core function."
Wednesday, February 6
For Governor Corbett's plan to privatize the state's socialist liquor monopoly to have the best chance of success, it would have to actually be argued on fundmental principles and not tied to more Harrisburg pull-peddling. By using such buzz words as "convenience" and, not by accident, excluding such words as "liberty" and "free enterprise," Governor Corbett will predictably be subject to a barrage of objections that could easily be answered if privatization was based on returning the government to its core function and not diluted with concessions to special interests (such as education). Amesh A. Adalja MD, FACP Butler
Sunday, February 3, 2013
Do we root against Ray Lewis, whose career with the Baltimore Ravens has angered Yinzers for 17 years, or do we root against the 49ers so they don’t match the Steelers with six Super Bowl titles?
Judgment Day has come for Yinzers across Steeler Nation in Super Bowl XLVII. Do we root against Ray Lewis, whose career with the Baltimore Ravens has angered Yinzers for 17 years, or do we root against the 49ers so they don’t match the Steelers with six Super Bowl titles? It’s a tough choice. Lewis, one of the greatest linebackers in NFL history, has a torrid history with the law after he was arrested on murder charges in 2000. Those charges were eventually dropped and Lewis pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice. But what might stick in the craw of every Pittsburgher is when Lewis mocked Joey Porter’s kick celebration in 2003. Porter, the former Steelers linebacker who was injured after being shot earlier in that year, thought Lewis was…
Sunday, January 27, 2013
Not one cyber charter school in the state and fewer than one-third of 'brick-and-mortar' charter schools made Adequate Yearly Progress last year.
Charter schools have been touted as a way for students to escape underperforming local public schools ever since Pennsylvania passed legislation in 1997 establishing them as a independent public schools. Cyber charter schools followed in 2002. One of the key selling points used by charter schools has been that their students outperform their public school counterparts. But according to the Pennsylvania School Boards Association, historical data indicate that a consistently lower percentage of charter schools make AYP (Adequate Yearly Progress) than traditional public schools. Last fall, the state Department of Education implemented a new way of determining whether charter schools have met student achievement milestones for AYP under the …
Sunday, January 20, 2013
The issues are many, but which stands out as the one most important to America?
A flurry of festivities will set Washington, D.C. in motion this week as President Barack Obama is sworn in Monday for his second term in office. With "Faith in America's Future" as the theme for the 2013 inauguration, the celebration will reflect the country's perseverance and unity, as well as commemorate the 150th anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation and the placement of the Statue of Freedom atop the Capitol Dome in 1863. The inaugural address, parade, and a number of balls and galas that honor the president will have a certain priority of their own. But when the hoopla dies down, there's some serious work to be done. Through the last year, our Patch Polls have focused on some of the major issues facing the country. This week, …
Sunday, January 13, 2013
Fear of gun control measures and safety concerns after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings have triggered gun sales.
As some people push for gun control, more stringent background checks on gun buyers or reinstituting the assault weapons ban, others are doing just the opposite—buying guns for the first time, adding more guns to their arsenals or at least stocking up on ammunition. Since 2008, when Barack Obama was first elected president, an estimated 67 million firearms have been purchased in the United States, according to the Kansas City Star—more than were sold in almost seven years before his first election. Nationwide, more than 2.7 million of those checks were recorded for December 2012, according to statistics kept by the FBI. Since late 1998, when federal law began mandating checks for prospective gun buyers, the only other month that exceeded …
Thursday, January 10, 2013
Have you seen any of the movies up for Academy Awards? Check out our recap of the nominees and then tell us who you think should win.
It’s that time of year again, and by that we mean nominations have been made for Hollywood’s own Super Bowl—the Academy Awards. This year’s nominees, announced Thursday morning by funnyman Seth MacFarlane and actress Emma Stone, include Lincoln, which had the most nominations at 12, and Les Miserables, which has nine nominations. Surprisingly, there was no best director nod for Ben Affleck for his critically acclaimed film Argo, which is nominated for seven awards, including Best Picture. The movie will compete alongside Amour, Beasts of the Southern Wild, Django Unchained, Les Miserables, Life of Pi, Lincoln, Silver Linings Playbook and Zero Dark Thirty in that category. Similar directing shutouts occurred for other highly-praised …
Sunday, January 6, 2013
A Massachusetts town has made the sale of water in plastic bottles illegal, although other soft drinks in plastic containers will be permitted.
Water didn't always come in plastic bottles. It came in waterways and then wells—and then through pipes into homes and businesses. When you traveled, you'd fill a canteen, Thermos or another container with water. Or maybe stop by a gas station where you could buy an ice-cold soda pop in a recyclable/reusable glass bottle. Although some people use eco-friendly, reusable plastic drink bottles, many others buy water in disposable, plastic bottles. In many cases, this is simply just city water, treated in the same way as the water that flows for a few cents from your tap. The Concord Patch reports that after three years of debate, Concord, MA is one of the first communities in the U.S. to pass a by-law that bans the sale of single-serving …
Monday, December 31, 2012
The Felix family from Dallas, GA received thousands of votes to win Patch's Deck the House contest and $100,000 for the local school district.
Monday, December 31, 2012
In this year's Deck the House contest, the second time was the charm. Joseph Felix's home in Dallas, GA outshined the other 24 finalists to win the 2012 Deck the House contest and $100,000 for the Paulding County, GA school district. After placing second in the nationwide voting in the 2011 contest, the Felix home received nearly 11,000 votes this year to finally win Deck the House. The home, with 100,000 computer-animated holiday lights choreographed to Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas is You," received about 300 more votes than a home in Coventry, R.I., which finished in second place. The Felix home was chosen from 24 national finalists, which included two homes in Eastern Pennsylvania—one in Hatboro-Horsham Patch and one in …
Sunday, December 30, 2012
Some lawmakers are in Washington, DC this weekend, trying to hammer out a last-minute deal to avoid the fiscal cliff, but if they don't, average citizens might feel the impact.
Our nation is less than two days from going over the "fiscal cliff"—and the compromise clock is ticking loudly. Senate leaders worked toward a last-minute compromise on Saturday to avoid middle-class tax increases and possibly prevent deep spending cuts, such as a 27 percent fee cut for doctors who treat Medicare patients. Tax Policy Center, a nonpartisan think tank, predicts that nearly 90 percent of households would be affected if Congressional leaders fail to reach a compromise before the Jan. 1 deadline. Among the impacts to average citizens: Those things would hit people in the wallet, which in turn has the potential to adversely affect our already-weak economy. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke has said the combination of tax …
Saturday, December 29, 2012
The bear already has been spotted at Buffalo Wild Wings and Burger King.
When it comes to choosing between burgers and wings, the bear spotted in Cranberry prefers both. The 200-pound black bear made local news headlines after climbing a tree outside Buffalo Wild Wings along Route 19 in Cranberry Thursday evening and staying there for close to two hours. Perhaps attracted by the scent of frying food, the bear later ambled across the highway (taking care to look both ways first) to Burger King before disappearing into the woods near Interstate 79. Maybe he wanted fries with that? Now, there are plenty of restaurants located along Route 228 near Interstate 79. Just for fun, which restaurant do you think the Cranberry bear should visit next? Maybe he could scoop up some global cuisine at the new Noodles & Company…