Satellite of love? Not so much. A European satellite is going to be crashing to earth any minute now, so we suggest you take a peek at the sky every now and again, since the world’s greatest scientists have no idea where it might land. We wouldn’t want you to inadvertently find yourself re-enacting a scene from the movie Donnie Darko.
Evidence emerged this week that President Obama may have, in fact, been fibbing when he said (25,000 times) that all Americans could keep their health plan if they wanted after the implementation of Obamacare. Also, it appears he may have known his website was a piece of garbage long before it was launched on society. Bad form, Mr. President. Of course, to some on Capitol Hill, these are impeachable offenses. Those would be the same people who can’t pass a budget, or otherwise do anything they were elected to do, ever.
Speaking of web sites, the General Assembly has re-designed and re-vamped and re-launched its own site, and we have to give them a big shout-out. Very well done! Perhaps Obama should look into hiring the General Assembly’s web designers.
The United States Supreme Court is scheduled to hear a case involving a local government that opens each meeting with a prayer. Some folks are agitated about this, apparently, or at least vexed enough to take their complaints all the way to the highest court in the land. Really, we couldn’t have solved this problem before reaching that point? We would like to think the Supremes have more important things to focus on.
Atlantic City is toast, we learned this week, and some are now calling for the city to divest itself from the business of gambling and focus on…well, something else. The odd part about the article was that nowhere did it mention that the reason the Atlantic City economy is collapsing is that the Pennsylvania gaming industry is eating its lunch, all day, every day. That’s right, New Jersey. And our foot is on that gas, too.
U.S. Senator Pat Toomey was the key vote this week in the U.S. Senate’s passage of ENDA, which would prohibit workplace discrimination based on sexual orientation. People who would like to put our junior senator in a neat little ideological box continue to be frustrated as heck.
On a related issue, former Governor Tom Ridge last week addressed the Log Cabin Republicans, and had a very blunt assessment of the party he was once privileged to lead in Pennsylvania. Basically, Ridge advised the group that the GOP needs to stop being all kinds of nebbish and mean on some social issues, and open up the tent a bit wider, maybe do a bit of compromising. See: Chris Christie.
Speaking of Christie, if you spent any time on the planet this week, you know he was re-elected by a huge margin in the Garden State (good luck with A.C., governor!) Ex-Clinton family bag man Terry McAuliffe also squeaked out a victory, becoming the next Governor of Virginia. For the entire wrap-up of Election Day, jump over here.
What’s that you say? You didn’t know it was Election Day last week? Well, that puts you firmly in the majority, since apparently 80% of the country doesn’t believe that the identity of the next mayor of their home city is something they need to be concerned about.
In case you were wondering, the next Mayor of Pennsylvania’s Capitol City (and home to Triad Strategies’ Global Headquarters) will be Eric Papenfuse! Congratulations, Mr. Mayor-elect. There is quite a mess left to clean up, we hope you brought some buckets and sponges.
House and Senate leaders met this week to talk about transportation (because that’s what happens here – people talk about transportation.), and all sides left the meeting claiming that progress was made, but yeah, they probably won’t vote on the plan this upcoming week. Careful, folks. December is starting to get kind of large in the windshield.
Attorney General Kathleen Kane is poised to do battle with an arbitration panel that decided the state did not diligently collect tobacco taxes, thereby blowing a $170 million hole in our settlement money. Apparently, we were negligent, even though Ohio and Oregon did the exact same as we did, and were not penalized. Who appoints these people?
U.S. Senator Bob Casey this week publicly asked Governor Tom Corbett to just go ahead and opt-in to the federal Medicaid expansion while he waits for approval from the feds on his list of conditions for opting into Medicaid expansion. Confused yet? Essentially, Casey is saying that there is no need to sit around and let people be uninsured while we all wait for the white smoke to come out of Kathleen Sebelius’ chimney. No word from Camp Corbett on that idea, but we are gonna go ahead and put our chips on “no”.
A report was released this week showing an estimated 147,000 Pennsylvania children lack health insurance, despite the fact that we have laws in place in Pennsylvania to cover all children with freakin’ health insurance. Astute readers will recall that Corbett recently signed a law eliminating the waiting list for the Children’s Health Insurance Program, so maybe that will help a little. But in the meantime, expect this little nugget to be at the top of Democratic gubernatorial talking points for a while.
Corbett also got bonked on the noggin’ more than a few times last week, as it came to light that his administration has spent $6.4 million on outside law firms and consultants on some of the higher-profile issues of the day, such as same-sex marriage and lottery privatization. More Democratic gubernatorial talking points. See a pattern emerging?
Charter schools continued to be a hot topic in Harrisburg this week, as a new reform bill winds its way through the process, and could be fast-tracked for a vote very soon. Some folks are now wondering if the bill does not make it a bit too easy for charters to add to their rolls without any input from the local school districts that pay the bills. Charter school “reform” could, therefore, “reform” public schools right the heck out of business.
There are also renewed calls for the reform effort to include some way to rein in the reimbursement rates that schools pay per pupil to charters and cyber-charters. It does seem rather odd that a public school that is educating its students at $10,000 per kid is forced to pay a charter $12,000 to educate that same kid.
If the General Assembly passes and Corbett signs a new bill that would call for mandatory drug testing of potential school employees, we can expect us some good old fashioned litigating, we learned this week. Oh well, forewarned is forearmed, we suppose. Might as well add to that running total of outside legal fees.
The DEP is currently conducting a study of radioactive materials that are used in fracking operations, and how some materials that were kinda radioactive at the start become slightly more radioactive at the end of said process. The Marcellus Shale industry is apparently none too thrilled with this study, and what does one do when they don’t like the government studying something? They buy a study of their own!
People who are interested in developing waterfront property may someday be given some state tax credits to do so, according to a new plan being floated in the state Senate this week. Given the fact that this state has more riverfront property that most other states (and therefore, many more deficient bridges crossing those rivers), this is a bill to watch. So we will be watching it.
We Can’t Make This Up is back this week, and today’s award goes to the State of Colorado, whose voters were faced with a ballot question on whether or not northern Colorado should secede and become the 51st state. Really? Those northern folks are that cranked off at southern Colorado? Of course, ask someone in Crawford County if Philadelphia should secede and you may get much the same answer!
That’s all from Triad Global Headquarters this week, where we are busy installing a steel dome over 116 Pine Street to repel any space debris! Check back with us next week when the legislature returns to the big sandbox on Commonwealth Avenue! In the meantime, share our content on Facebook and re-Tweet our stuff on Twitter! From all your friends here at Triad, have a great weekend!