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Keeping an eye out for all things socially acceptable...or not!

Monday, June 29, 2015

We must start rewriting the Pennsylvania property tax stories

If there was a way to make this required reading for all state representatives and state senators I would do it in a New York minute. Maybe if everyone reading this would either cut it out or send the link to their own state rep or state senator, we could reach a good portion of them anyway. Maybe if they had to pick up my phone from time to time you wouldn’t have to. Or maybe, they get the same telephone calls, and they just haven’t been able to make it happen. In this week's rant I talk about Rose. She's 82 and she's about to lose her home because she can no longer afford to pay her property taxes. We should be able to write a different story for Rose.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Dreaming of Independence (Day) from property tax

I'm not really sure, but I'm beginning to think that I just might be the human definition of insanity. How many times can I keep writing about property tax reform and expect a result different than what we have today? In my latest rant I'm actually hoping for the day that I will be able to tell my grandkids, of which I have none at this time, about how property tax reform finally came to fruition.

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Classical music coming to Montgomery County, PA

We’ve been in the process of establishing the Centre Theater Music School for so long now it seems more like a medical procedure than a process. I’ve been saying it for years, and I’m going to keep saying it until it actually comes to fruition: Norristown can revitalize itself with the help of the arts. It has happened time and time again throughout Montgomery County and all of southeastern Pennsylvania. Perhaps, what we’ve needed all along is something special, something unique to kick start the movement. This is that something special. When was the last time you had the opportunity to hear live, classical music in Norristown? And the caliber will be something to behold. Steve Kramer is bringing a few of his friends with him to Norristown on June 28, including a first chair violinist from the Philadelphia Symphony Orchestra. I have learned there are several first chair violinists, but one is also known as the concert master. I’m not sure why that is, but I’ll ask Steve when he gets a few minutes to himself. Right now he’s preparing for the afternoon, and also teaching at Musicopia. The afternoon, by the way, starts with cocktails at 2 p.m. and the performance begins at 3 p.m. In my latest rant, which is more of a plea this week, I talk about the positive impact music can have on the children of Norristown.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Spring cleaning should include Pennsylvania's antiquated election laws

I'm not 100 percent sure, but I believe there are only three other states in this country that have closed primaries. In this week's rant, I ask for a change, and it would also be nice if there was an answer as to why! Between cross filing and closed primaries it's a wonder people go to the polls at all during off-year election. Wait a minute, most of them don't. Only 14 percent of registered voters bothered to make their way to the polls.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Spring cleaning time, and I have the broom

The first thing to take a broom to is all of the registered voters who decided to stay home during the primary election a couple of weeks ago. Just about 14 percent of the registered 532,200 voters in Montgomery County decided to make the effort at the polls on May 19. You reap what you sow, folks, you reap what you sow. I know I’ve written this before, but I am tempted to just not cover elections at all. It would be interesting to see how many people even notice. You can find this and more in this week's rant, and I'm already working on a follow up, so stay tuned!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Freedom of speech is for all, not just for those who complain

How is it that it is no loner socially acceptable to believe in what you want to believe in? In my latest rant I talk about freedom of speech and about how we're actually whittling away at that right with all of the protest against those who want to have the freedom to stand up for what they believe in, even if it doesn't fit the latest socially acceptable norm.

Monday, May 18, 2015

A rant that bears repeating - Vote!

I often feel like I’m preaching to the choir when I write this column, but just like the coverage we provide for the elections, which seems to attract fewer and fewer voters, especially in off-year elections, I feel like it is my civic duty to encourage folks to get to the polls. This year is an off-off year and will only see an extremely small percentage of the voters who come out during a presidential election. And since I’m a betting man of sorts, I’ve got a cup of coffee for anyone who thinks turnout will be above 25 percent in the county. Any takers? I didn’t think so. And it’s such a shame. It really is. We’re about to elect folks responsible for setting our property taxes. We’re about to elected judges who will decide the fate of our fellow man.