Saturday, January 28, 2017

I Am Agog

It is inconceivable to me that the United States is refusing admittance to an interpreter who helped US troops in Iraq.  He has been caught up in the new president's recent executive order.  How in the world are we going to persuade people to help us in future conflicts when we treat them so poorly. See "Judge halts implementation of Trump's immigration order," by Ariane de Vogue and Eli Watkins on

Since it is impossible these days to reach Sen. Toomey's office by phone, let me use this blog post to ask the senator to please work against this executive order.  And also, vote against Betsy DeVos.

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Note From Larry the Cat

As you may know, British Prime Minister Theresa May is in Philadelphia to visit with President Trump.  Larry, the cat who lives at No. 10 Downing Street, the official residence of the Prime Minister, has a twitter feed.  He recently noted noted that while she will be traveling to the US, she is leaving her pussy at home.  That Larry, what a card!

Transit Alerts for Thursday, Jan. 26th

President Trump is in town tomorrow, meeting with other legislative Republicans, and this will have some effect on public transit.  Here are details from SEPTA:

SEPTA will make adjustments to Market-Frankford Line and City Trolley service, and detour a number of bus routes in Center City, during Thursday’s visit by President Trump and Vice President Pence to the Republican Congressional Caucus’ annual meeting.

Road closures and other restrictions will be in place surrounding the event, which will be held at the Loews Hotel at 12th and Market Streets. As a result, the following changes will be in effect at the start of service on Thursday, Jan. 26:

 13th Street Station, for the Market-Frankford Line and City Trolley routes, will be closed. MarketFrankford Line trains will bypass 13th Street; customers can exit and enter at 11th Street and 15th Street. City Trolley Routes 10, 11, 13, 34 and 36 will begin and end service at 15th Street Station.

 Bus routes that normally travel through the area bordered east/west by 11th and 13th Streets, and north/south by Filbert and Chestnut Streets, will be on detour due to road closures. Please note that there may be additional routes put on detour and routing changes made throughout the day as road conditions warrant. For up-to-date information on bus detours, go to the System Status page of SEPTA’s website at or follow @SEPTA_Bus on Twitter.

 Customers using Jefferson Station will need to enter and exit at 11th Street or Filbert Street. The main headhouse on Market Street will be closed.

Also, please note that the regularly scheduled January SEPTA Board meeting will proceed as scheduled at 3 p.m. on Thursday. Members of the public who are attending the meeting can access SEPTA headquarters through the rear of the building, off 13th Street, or the underground concourse.

SEPTA is urging customers to check SEPTA’s website,, as well as the Authority’s social media resources for updated travel information throughout the day on Thursday. Travel alerts will also be sent to local news media outlets whenever new information is available.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Trying to Contact Sen. Toomey

Late this afternoon I tried to contact Sen. Toomey's office, to encourage him to vote against Betsy DeVos, nominee for Secretary of Education.  I couldn't reach the Philadelphia office, so I tried the Washington DC office.  That call went to voicemail.  I tried the Scranton office.  Either Philly or Scranton had a busy signal, and eventually voicemail but it said the mailbox was full.  The other just transferred to voicemail but wouldn't let me leave a message but on the phone tree was the option to talk with an operator, but that just led back to voicemail.  It is very frustrating.

Monday, January 16, 2017

US Needs Government Cats Who Tweet

After the election I was looking around for things to lift my spirits.

And I found things -- twitter accounts for UK government cats.  That's right, there are moggies at the keyboard in Downing Street and other government buildings.  At least four of them.

Larry the Cat lives with the Prime Minister at #10 Downing Street.  Larry is considered a civil servant and not a personal pet, so he's there regardless of who is in office.   Follow him at

Gladstone counts the mice at the Treasury and tweets at:

Palmerston patrols the Foreign Office and officially tweets at:

Evie is the newest mouser on duty, with her son Ossie.  She patrols part of Whitehall and tweets at:

Even Julian Assange has a tweeting cat:

What does the US have?  Well, John Kerry's dog has a twitter feed:

A few Bo Obama twitter feeds started but none lasted long.

The UK government cats are working cats -- the British press keeps track of their mousing skills (Larry is rumored to be a slacker in this area, but the people and the press like him, so his job is fairly secure for the moment.  Fame is fickle, Larry; step up your game.

Mike Pence has two cats.  Maybe they will follow the trend.  There are surely a few mice around Observatory Circle.

Nice Press for Jared Solomon

The Philadelphia Public Record published a nice article on newly elected State Rep. Jared Solomon.  "Change brings Solomon to the lower northeast," by Tony West 1/13/17 provides a political history and some biographical information on Solomon, who is now representing the 202nd state house district, in Northeast Philadelphia.

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Dean New Chair of House SE Delegation

amended press release:

Democratic members of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives’ Southeast Delegation on Tuesday elected state Rep. Madeleine Dean as chair of the delegation for the 2017-18 legislative term.
State Reps. Mary Jo Daley and Patty Kim were elected vice chairs, state Rep. Steve McCarter was elected treasurer, and state Rep. Pamela A. DeLissio was elected secretary.
The Southeast Delegation comprises 22 Democratic members. The delegation website can be found Dean replaces former state Rep. Steve Santarsiero, D-Bucks, who did not seek re-election for his Pennsylvania House seat.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

December Dog Licenses in Montco

from the inbox:

Montgomery County Treasurer Jason Salus today announced that beginning December 1st, residents are able to purchase their 2017 dog licenses through his office. 
According to Salus, Pennsylvania state law requires all dogs three months and older be licensed by January 1st of each year. “If your dog is lost, a license is their ticket home. It helps animal control and shelters identify dogs to return them home safely,” said Salus. 
An annual dog license is $8.50, or $6.50 if the animal is spayed or neutered. Lifetime licenses are available for dogs that have permanent identification like a microchip or tattoo. Additionally, older adults and people with disabilities may be eligible for discounts. Owners who do not purchase a license could face state fines and penalties of up to $300 for each unlicensed dog. 
“One of the goals of my office is to make getting a dog license fast and easy,” said Salus. “Licenses can be purchased or renewed online, through the mail or at a number of satellite locations across the County. Salus added, 
“Licenses make a great stocking stuffer – don’t forget your pets this holiday season!” Licenses may be purchased at the Treasurer’s office which is located on the sixth floor of One Montgomery Plaza in Norristown or online at

Leary Nominated to Social Security Administration

The White House released a list of nominations that have been sent to the Senate.  Among them is Michael P. Leary, of Pennsylvania, to be Inspector General, Social Security Administration, vice Patrick P. O'Carroll, Jr., resigned.

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Wadlington a Champion of Change

 On Friday September 30, the White House will recognize ten individuals from across the country as White House “Champions of Change” for extracurricular enrichment, afterschool, and summer programming for marginalized girls, including girls of color.  One of the ten is from Pennsylvania:

Cheryl Ann Wadlington – Philadelphia, PennsylvaniaCheryl Ann Wadlington is the Founder and Executive Director of The Evoluer House in Philadelphia. Under Wadlington’s leadership, The Evoluer House has delivered award-winning empowerment programs over the past 12 years to more than 1,200 teen girls of color experiencing unique social and emotional challenges and barriers to success. The Evoluer House works to equip the most underserved and hard-to-reach girls in Philadelphia with essential tools to become college-bound and career-ready and break the cycle of intergenerational poverty. As a testament to its success, 100% of Evoluer House graduates finish high school on time and 90% go on to attend a four-year college. Cheryl is also a fashion and beauty journalist, personal growth consultant, author, and motivational speaker.

Porterfield a Champion of Change

This Friday eleven people will be honored this Friday at the White House as Champions of Change for College Opportunity.  One of the eleven is from Pennsylvania:

Daniel R. Porterfield– Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Daniel R. Porterfield, Ph.D. has served as president of Franklin & Marshall College since 2011. Under his leadership, Franklin & Marshall has developed a distinctive student talent strategy built upon a significant increase in their need-based financial aid budget. Through his work, Franklin & Marshall has seen record application numbers and an increase in the academic profile, diversity, and selectivity of incoming classes. In addition, lower-income and first-generation students at F&M consistently achieve the same average GPA as the student body as a whole and maintaining higher retention and graduation rates. Porterfield sits on the boards of the College Board and the Lenfest College Scholarship Foundation. He has received awards for his work from the KIPP and “I Have A Dream” foundations and in 2016 was named one of the “Sixteen Most Innovative People in Higher Education” by Washington Monthly. Prior to leading Franklin & Marshall, Porterfield served as a Senior Vice President at his alma mater, Georgetown University. He was awarded a Rhodes Scholarship and a Mellon Fellowship in the Humanities and earned his Ph.D. at The City University of New York Graduate Center.