Enrollment and revenues are down. Where is ECC heading?

Finding time in their busy legislative calendars, highlighted recently by consideration of the “Feline (Cat) Adoption Promotion Act of 2019,” the Erie County Legislature recently received a presentation concerning the status of Erie Community College. The felines (cats) look like they will be getting some serious attention from the Legislature. The Kats (the ECC mascot) or the taxpayers who help fund their education – not so much. Continue reading

Regardless of what the Barr Report claims, there are plenty of reasons to hold Trump accountable

“A man hears what he wants to hear, and disregards the rest…” Simon and Garfunkel

So it’s finally out. The Mueller Report, that is. Followed just 48 hours later by the long awaited Barr Report.

Working overtime during the past weekend, Attorney General William Barr and his gang of Republican-appointed attorneys digested twenty-two months of work by the Office of Special Counsel and wrapped it all up in a concise four-page political summary. Continue reading

When the Republican Party claimed to be fiscal conservatives and constitutionalists; Roger (Stone) and me

You don’t need to think too far back to remember a time when the Republican Party touted the idea that they were the party of fiscal responsibility. They also said they were constitutionalists or originalists.

This is not to say that the Republicans were always pure about such subjects. They took great joy in quickly turning the Clinton budget surpluses into deficits with the Bush tax cuts of 2001. Continue reading

Will Sanders crowd out the other progressive senators? And a couple footnotes on the Erie County Executive race

Welcome to Sunshine Week. Politics and Other Stuff does its part by writing about public institutions that need some sunlight. Sometimes it’s necessary to comfort the afflicted and to afflict the comfortable.

I haven’t watched American Idol or Survivor in a long time, but it seems like we are living in the political version of those TV reality shows at the moment. The Democratic presidential sweepstakes has people coming in; dropping out; trying to decide what to do – it seems like nearly every day.

I’m sure it is just a coincidence, but why did all the “progressive” senator Democratic presidential candidates all seem to enter the 2020 race in a bunch? And now there may be the march of the moderates – some governors, plus former Vice President Joe Biden. Is Beto O’Rourke in this bunch too? Continue reading

Some facts, observations and heard-on-the-streets

It seems appropriate at this time, in a winter that does not want to go away, to observe that there couldn’t be a worst time for the valiant committee members of the various political parties to have to go out and circulate candidate nominating petitions. The process began last week and ends in early April. “Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds.” Continue reading

The Green New Deal — big on ideas, but with no details

The 2018 blue wave that brought a strong Democratic majority to the House of Representatives in 2018 unleashed all sorts of interesting things. It also jump-started the 2020 election.

The new House in the 116th Congress brought many eager and ambitious young members, a great development. New ideas and new vigor are important. One Democrat, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Democrat from Queens, New York City, has dominated press attention concerning the freshman class. For the party’s sake it would help if more of the new members of the caucus received some of the focus. Continue reading

Revisiting ECC issues

Patience is something that I have come to know as a very important virtue when dealing with Erie Community College. When you are looking for information for a blog post, or trying to figure out why the school administrators and those with oversight responsibilities over the institution have a different view of facts about the institution, it can be very frustrating.

On January 5th I filed a Freedom of Information Law request with the College, asking the following: Continue reading