Fund education now
During my experience at Student Lobby Day, I received mixed responses on the issue of additional funding for higher education and Gov. Corbett’s Ready to Succeed Scholarships.
When approached with the idea of more funding in higher education for middle-income families, many legislators seemed supportive and afraid of gaining a bad image by not supporting something so positive. But when you read further into their responses and body language, it almost seemed as if they didn’t really care, or that they had bigger things to worry about.
It is my fear that legislators are paying more attention to other immediate issues such as firearm control, healthcare reform or budget problems. These issues are arguably less important than education, but draw a legislator’s attention solely on the popularity of these issues. Also, these issues draw the attention of legislators as they are “right now” issues and the benefits to the legislators can be seen in the near future.
Additional funding for education has many long-term benefits. Allowing a student to graduate with less debt will in turn increase future consumer spending, providing for a long-term healthy economy. Debt will result in decreases in the housing market, consumer-spending market and the financial service market. Also, this debt will result in a strain on Social Security and other retirement planning markets.
The overall effect of these problems will hit the government the hardest due to the gradual decrease of taxes collected. Consumer spending also affects jobs and is key to a healthy economy.
I am expressing my concern that legislators do not look far enough down the road. I am worried that they are seeking quick gains and are willing to accept long-term consequences of not solving other issues because they will be someone else’s problem. It will take an ethical legislator who truly does not care about personal gain, as he or she will not be around to enjoy the benefits surrounding this issue. These characteristics appear rare in our government, but as this problem escalates, I believe and hope that our government will take action on student debt before it’s too late.
Don’t blame labor unions
Tom Stiglich’s editorial cartoon on May 14, 2014 is disappointing and misleading. Labor unions do not cause a city’s financial woes. Union members are hardworking, provide multiple services and pay many taxes.
Rather than denigrate labor unions, Stiglich should criticize what’s truly destroying Philadelphia. The real problems are the 10-year tax abatement, corporations who pay little to no taxes, the rich who never pay their fair share, tax deadbeats, whom Nutter made a great show of going after for about five minutes several years ago, and out-of-town slum-lords. We also have an overpaid City Council that, decadently, never works summers.
I assume Mr. Stiglich is a working man, yet with his cartoon, he vilifies fellow workers, making it seem that those of us in unions are monsters because we receive a living wage, paid sick days, vacation, holidays and retirement.
These are basics every employee deserves, but rather than promote their attainment for all who must earn a paycheck, once again, the low road was taken by blaming municipal monetary troubles on union members.
Shame, shame, shame
The treatment of our veteran heroes has saddened and enraged our nation. I bring my 5-pound Pomeranian, Foxy, to visit some friends at the Delaware Valley Veterans Home. It is an honor to be with them.
The hard-working staff is caring, kind, respectful and does everything in their power to give our veterans the best quality of life possible.
The volunteers who come in are important. More would be welcome, and are needed. Bureaucrats in government are solely responsible for the horrible neglect. The problem could be solved in five minutes by putting President Barack Obama and all government officials and their families on the veteran’s list for care.