Monthly Archives: April 2015

Education: It will take a little bit of work…

If you think that education is an important piece to readying Pittsburgh for this economy and the next, then you’ll want to read the new Null Space.

Now brood for a while.

And note that Pittsburgh is more fragmented than most, and that our last attempt to consolidate governments probably tried to bite off too much, too quickly.

Now let’s look at a School Board race in Pittsburgh proper, in District 8, which spans three rivers to encourage a majority-minority disposition:

In the May 19 primary, one of the three has cross-filed: Rosemary Moriarty, 64, of the Central North Side, who worked as a teacher and administrator for Pittsburgh Public Schools for more than 35 years. She was principal of the Miller African-Centered Academy in the Hill District when she retired in 2008.

Two other candidates are on only the Democratic ballot: Kevin L. Carter, 26, of Manchester, who is founder and CEO of the nonprofit Adonai Center for Black Males based in Downtown, and Patricia Rogers, 49, of the Mexican War Streets, who is a legislative assistant for state Rep. Jake Wheatley, D-Hill District, and a former substance abuse unit supervisor for a county Juvenile Court program.

Ms. Moriarty has two grown children who attended Pittsburgh Public Schools. The other two candidates do not have children. (P-G, Eleanor Chute)

Based on this, Moriarty clearly seems Continue reading

On History: How we are doomed to learn from it…

Thanks to writer Salena Zito and Mayor Bill Peduto for some thought-provoking historicizing this week.

This need for change was not what many of America’s Founders believed, especially those who worked the land and tended to view history as cyclical, according to Curt Nichols, political scientist at the University of Missouri.

He explained their philosophy: “Things tend to go from good to bad to worse before they get better again. And things only got better if a virtuous citizenry worked hard and was willing to sacrifice to make things better.”

Timing was everything for these “country” thinkers. They believed, as Shakespeare’s Brutus did, that “there is a tide in the affairs of men. Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune; omitted, all the voyage of their life is bound in shallows and in miseries.” (Trib, Salena Zito)

The “country” people who worked the land and made sacrifices were slaves. This point takes nothing away from Zito Continue reading

New Pittsburgh. Old Pittsburgh. What is Timelessburgh?

Today we’ll take a look at the next wave, and then the Old School.

P for Pittsburgh launched its enterprises with a two-day invitational pep rally celebrating a moment of potentiality.

A citywide building boom, an infusion of young professionals and heightened partnerships between foundation and civic officials are among factors jump-starting conversations about long-term planning strategies. (Trib, Natasha Lidstrom)

Strategies abound. Planning would be excellent!  Continue reading

Years Later, no easier Being Green (or writing Fresh Headlines)

The Pittsburgh region got another 18 months to devise “greener” stormwater runoff plans, so hopefully hundreds of engineers are working day and night.

But sewer officials in Cleveland insisted it was not the right remedy. They described overflows as a “volume-based problem” that overwhelms the sewer system during large storm events while green technology is designed to keep out very small amounts of rainwater. (P-G, Daniel Moore)

That is chapter-and-verse what our own sewer agency officials told the Comet three years ago. There is no question that “source-control” methods like rain barrels, permeable pavements, rain gardens and bioswales are effective and more affordable than new sewer tunnels at the points at which they are located. But how do they fit into a strategy for a region spanning several hundred square miles that is already well-built?

When it rains, it pours, Continue reading

Flaherty’s Invasion of Advocacy group betrays desperation

This is a good example of why people get disillusioned with the political system and turn to more constructive pursuits, like smashing windows.

“Ninety people submitted membership forms — and cash registration fees — to the Steel City Stonewall Democrats in the hours before a midnight Monday deadline, nearly doubling the group’s membership… The money involved, according to Mike Mikus, amounts to $2,580 that came from his political action committee Better Jobs, Better Future…” (P-G, Dan Majors; see also Trib)

Lo and behold, the Stonewall Dems discovered it had developed some very powerful convictions when it came to the office of Allegheny County Controller — and besides which that its own organizational and community members aren’t good enough to endorse for office.

I remember something similar happened Continue reading