Northeast Times

Editorial: Say uncle, Tom

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James Carville, polit­ics’ con­sum­mate caustic con­sult­ant and com­ment­at­or, once said of Pennsylvania: It’s Phil­adelphia on the east, Pitt­s­burgh on the west, and Alabama in between.

When it comes to fund­ing for pub­lic edu­ca­tion, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett seems to be act­ing more like the gov­ernor of Alabama. He’s against pub­lic edu­ca­tion and for a free ride for Big En­ergy.

Mr. Corbett wants to slice $1.2 bil­lion from the state’s ap­pro­pri­ation for pub­lic edu­ca­tion, in­clud­ing al­most $300 mil­lion from the School Dis­trict of Phil­adelphia.

Ad­mit­tedly, Ar­lene Ack­er­man, Phil­adelphia’s stub­born and se­cret­ive schools su­per­in­tend­ent, is grossly over­paid and de­serves neither her ab­surdly high salary nor her bo­nus — and the soon­er she gets the boot from her pals on the School Re­form Com­mis­sion, the bet­ter — but that’s no reas­on to pun­ish pub­lic school pu­pils and their tax­pay­ing par­ents by slash­ing so much from them.

Mr. Corbett, who as a can­did­ate last year pub­licly mused that he could win the gov­ernor’s race if the vote in Phil­adelphia was kept low, seems not to give a damn about the ef­fects his pro­posed cuts would have on edu­ca­tion.

If he wants to be gov­ernor of the en­tire state and not just the Alabama sec­tion, he will spend the next month meet­ing with teach­ers, their uni­on rep­res­ent­at­ives, stu­dents, par­ents and com­munity act­iv­ists, and hear the con­cerns of real people. If he does, he will ease off the edu­ca­tion cuts and back off, ever so slightly, from his “no new taxes” cam­paign pledge by ur­ging the le­gis­lature to start tax­ing nat­ur­al gas. It’s a cash cow that needs a good milk­ing.

Care to com­ment? Send an e-mail to: pronews@bsmphilly.com

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You can reach at star@bsmphilly.com.

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