Opinion

Wolf’s budget could save Pennsylvania |Mar 26, 2015

Gov. Tom Wolf’s budget proposal presents a clear vision for the future of our state and dares us to be great in the spirit of President John Kennedy who said that “a rising tide lifts all boats.

Wolf negotiates billions with unions who gave him millions |Mar 26, 2015

Gov. Tom Wolf’s

Think About It: Our Love of Animals |Mar 26, 2015

When you grow up on a farm, you have an inborn love for animals. Whether it was the cows and chickens, hogs and geese, horse and pony, sheep, cat or dog, from the start of the day to the end of the day we were around those animals.

Taxpayers deserve a fair trade with school property tax elimination |Mar 19, 2015

Many local football fans have watched their favorite NFL team make numerous trades and acquisitions over the past two weeks. Some of those trades leave fans scratching their heads and wondering what the front office is doing to help the team get to the Super Bowl.

Pa. should make cyber charter school funding reform a priority |Mar 19, 2015

Schools that teach. A very basic concept, yet one that has more complicated layers — with one layer costing about $426 million annually.

Energy efficiency legislation works |Mar 12, 2015

Last year was the hottest ever recorded globally, and the U.S. remains the world leader in CO2 emissions per capita.

Why this Catholic physician supports medical aid in dying |Mar 11, 2015

Inspired by the public advocacy of terminal brain cancer patient Brittany Maynard, lawmakers in

Think About It: Sew Many Quilts; So Little Time |Mar 11, 2015

Every now and then, I like to stop by the old quilt rack hanging on an upstairs wall in the old farmhouse where we live here on the University of Valley Forge campus. The oldest part of the house was built somewhere around the mid-1800s, so an old quilt hanging on that wall fits perfectly.

Trust Pennsylvanians, not government, to lead the way |Mar 11, 2015

Last week, Gov. Tom Wolf proposed a budget with a spending rate clocking in at a blistering $1,000 per second. That means in the time it takes you to read this article, say three minutes, state government would spend a stunning $180,000.

Think About It: You Know You are Old If... |Mar 4, 2015

One of hardest things to understand is what it means to be old. I am beginning to realize what Bernard Baruch meant when he said, “To me, old age is always ten years older than I am.”

Gov. Tom Wolf inviting conversation: Who’s up to task? |Mar 4, 2015

We’ve heard a lot of state budget addresses over the years, stretching back to Gov. Dick Thornburgh. They’ve been fairly predictable, as have been the default responses of the opposite party (one party’s “investments” are another’s “taxes” or “giveaways”).

EDITORIAL: Pa. Legislature sitting on $161M of taxpayer money |Feb 27, 2015

You have to give Pennsylvania’s Republican-controlled Legislature points for chutzpah.

Think About It: Addicted to Snow |Feb 27, 2015

“The very fact of snow is such an amazement.”

Community Reinvestment Act can boost energy efficiency, funding for low-income schools |Feb 25, 2015

One in five Americans spends his or her days in our nation’s 140,000 K-12 schools. Those schools spend close to $8 billion a year on energy costs, the second-largest line item in a school budget after personnel costs.

Wolf’s so-called ‘moratorium’ on death penalty holds no water in Pa. courts |Feb 20, 2015

Governor Wolf did not impose a “moratorium” on Pennsylvania’s death penalty.

Pa. government should do less so we can do more |Feb 20, 2015

Prosperity or ruin? In theory, it’s a simple choice with an obvious answer. But in practice, complicating factors make the decision anything but easy.

Think About It: Thoughts on Leadership, Part I |Feb 18, 2015

Last week I shared six “Thoughts on Leadership - Part I.” Today I would like to share six more.

Dusting off the Church Committee an option for overhauling oversight |Feb 12, 2015

“It is not often that nations learn from the past, even rarer that they draw the correct conclusions from it.”

Think About It: Thoughts on Leadership, Part I |Feb 12, 2015

“A good leader leads the people from above them. A great leader leads the people from within them.”

The real ‘dark money’ in Pennsylvania politics |Feb 12, 2015

January marked the fifth anniversary of the U.S. Supreme Court’s controversial Citizens United v. FEC decision, which lifted many restrictions on corporate spending in politics.

Long-term problems are big opportunities for change in Pennsylvania |Feb 4, 2015

Pennsylvania added nearly two dozen new lawmakers in November, and there’s a new face in the Governor’s Mansion. Indeed, that face will look very new, as Tom Wolf is the first Pennsylvania governor with a beard in more than a century.

A free and open internet makes an innovative and competitive economy |Feb 4, 2015

If you’re reading this online, thank net neutrality.

Think About It: The Prophetic Fire of Ida B. Wells |Feb 4, 2015

“None of us alone can save the nation or world. But each of us can make a positive difference if we commit ourselves to do so.”

Citizens United will stifle business innovation |Jan 29, 2015

Five years after the Supreme Court handed down its decision in Citizens United v. FEC, the United States is still feeling its ill effects.

EDITORIAL: Pa. needs a strong shield law for journalists |Jan 29, 2015

Apparently, shooting the messenger is much more appealing to a statewide grand jury than actually investigating how the information was leaked in the first place.

Think About It: Before I Go Blind |Jan 29, 2015

“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals.”

On Inauguration Day, campaign rhetoric meets governing reality for Wolf |Jan 22, 2015

We congratulate Tom Wolf on becoming Governor of Pennsylvania. Today is the day where campaign rhetoric meets governing reality — simple math will challenge the unaffordable promises that Governor Wolf made on the campaign trail.

Keystone Pipeline: Foreign profits, American risk |Jan 22, 2015

Media coverage of the Keystone XL pipeline is coalescing around a single narrative. It goes like this: environmentalists oppose the pipeline because of climate change concerns, and U.S. construction companies support the pipeline because it creates jobs.

Think About It: Where I’m From, Part II |Jan 20, 2015

“Life can be understood backwards; but it must be lived forwards.”

Commissioner Farrell: Opportunities in Chester County increasing in 2015 |Jan 14, 2015

The citizens of Chester County have a myriad of opportunities as we begin 2015 and close out a successful 2014.

Sen. Dinniman: Thank you for your thoughts |Jan 14, 2015

I would like to thank all who have reached out to me, my wife and my daughter after the recent loss of our beloved family dog Henry. Your letters, cards, e-mails and social media posts truly helped us cope with this new painful void in our home.

Think About It: Where I’m From, Part I |Jan 14, 2015

“Remember, you are the expert on you. No one else sees the world as you do; no one else has your material to draw from.”

Tom Wolf’s multi-million dollar conflict of interest |Jan 8, 2015

Governor-elect Tom Wolf has come out of the gate leading a charge for ethics reform in government, but his own glaring conflict of interest leaves a cloud over his high-minded efforts.

Truth and Reconciliation process could help stem racial friction |Jan 8, 2015

The killings of Michael Brown and Eric Garner have sparked a national outcry to end the epidemic of police brutality against black men. I believe our greatest hope lies in creating a truth and reconciliation process — starting in Ferguson, Missouri — that can get to the roots of a long history of racial trauma and open the way for healing.

Think About It: Setting S.M.A.R.T. Goals |Jan 6, 2015

“In absence of clearly defined goals, we become strangely loyal to performing daily acts of trivia.”

Boost business by raising the minimum wage |Dec 30, 2014

As a restaurant owner operating in four states and looking to expand, I’m happy to see the minimum wage going up in 21 states to kick off the new year. I’d like to see the federal minimum wage increase as well to benefit business and our economy nationwide.

Think About It: New Year... New Beginnings |Dec 30, 2014

“And suddenly you know: It’s time to start something new and trust the magic of beginnings.”

Former Pennsylvania House Hotel residents need community’s help |Dec 26, 2014

I was so saddened after reading the article on the Pennsylvania House shut down by code enforcement.

With Pennsylvania House shut down, housing for the needy is desperately needed |Dec 19, 2014

The Pennsylvania House could be a proud Phoenixville landmark. Located on High Street in what is referred to as “the North Side,” it has slowly morphed from a boarding house offering inexpensive rooms to those in need, to the kind of place that is barely inhabitable.

Think About It: A Cup of Christmas Tea |Dec 18, 2014

“You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.”

Paid Family Leave: An employee benefit that benefits employers as well |Dec 18, 2014

The holiday season can be a time of great joy. But for many working parents, the holidays are also a stark reminder of how tenuous their employment and benefits are.

We can’t let our leaders ignore climate change |Dec 18, 2014

In mid-November, President Obama struck an historic deal with Chinese leader Xi Jinping in which both countries pledged to substantially reduce their greenhouse emissions over the next decade.

From ashes of firebird vandalism, Phoenixville provides example to other communities |Dec 13, 2014

Last Saturday, I woke up to a phone call at 7:30 in the morning from photographer and Phoenixville area staple Barry Taglieber.

Zogby: Time for Wolf to end the ‘blame game’ and govern |Dec 10, 2014

No amount of feigned astonishment at a pending $1.9 billion budget deficit will erase the fact that this situation has existed for years and will only worsen without needed reforms.

Think About It: The Good Old Days |Dec 10, 2014

“We get so soon old and so late smart.”

DIY Fame: Phoenixville should invest in its burgeoning music scene |Dec 10, 2014

I’ve been hanging around Phoenixville for over 10 years and living here for a month, and if there’s one thing that defines the town, it’s music.

Reporter Frank Otto sums up life in the news business |Dec 9, 2014

Journalism is the only life I’ve known as an adult. I started at the Delaware County Daily Times as a full-time intern when I graduated from the University of Wisconsin in 2011. Just a few months after that summertime internship ended, I found myself at 24 N.

Teachers’ Unions: The common roadblock to reform |Dec 9, 2014

From Philadelphia to York to the Pittsburgh suburbs, parents and taxpayers are looking to improve public education without breaking the bank. But there’s a common roadblock standing in their way: Teachers’ unions are consigning students to some of the worst-performing schools in the state — all to retain their iron grip on power.

Voters call for clarity: IRS should listen |Dec 9, 2014

Nonprofit political activity is at a crossroads. Nonprofits have come under criticism from some on the left for spending too much dark money to influence politics, while some on the right critique the IRS for subjecting certain groups applying for nonprofit status to increased scrutiny based on their names.

Think About It: Celebrating Christmas Traditions |Dec 2, 2014

“Some businessmen are saying this could be the greatest Christmas ever. I always thought the first one was.”