Running for Council 

Whereas the partying-hearty Democratic machine which owns this town has brought us four years of:
1. unreformed taxes on small business owners;
2. thousands upon thousands of un-reclaimed blighted buildings and vacant lots;
3. unfair valuations yet higher taxes on our homes;
4. a public school system under financial siege and not yet returned to our local control;
5.unmitigated gun and street violence;
6. puff about being the greenest tree-filled city in the country yet unable to pick up the fall leaves;
7. unlimited terms for City Council incumbents;
8. DROP;
9. forcing us to take the City to court to keep  it from permanently closing 11 public libraries;
10. complicity in the Democratic national agenda of bailing out big banks, waging costly illegal wars, and whose largest employment plan is  for youth by service in the armed forces,
And, whereas 1,100 voters (mostly Democrats) voted for me as the Green Party candidate for Philadelphia 8th District City Council in the 2007 election, despite overwhelming odds against my being elected,
I  hereby throw my shoe at the Democratic machine by declaring my candidacy as a write-in for the 2011 November general election for 8th District Council.
It’s time the Arab Spring arrived in Philadelphia.

Brian “Write In” Rudnick
Green Party
Chestnut Hill

Our Nepali
Neighbors

Many thanks to the Local for the excellent article (June 16) about the members of the Bhutanese/Nepali refugee family and their adjustment to life in the U.S. Also thanks to Lynn Mather for her eye-catching, colorful photos. The family and those who support their progress in various ways are delighted.
There are several other people not mentioned in the article to whom the family would like to give thanks, including their landlord; various members of Chestnut Hill Friends’ Meeting who help with English lessons for the parents, computer support, and setting up and transport to medical appointments; and one particular (anonymous) benefactress who has helped unstintingly with needs such as eyeglasses, workboots, school uniform requirements, and winter jackets.
Just two weeks ago, the Subedis’ dearest wish came true when the remaining member of the family,Tulsa, arrived from the Nepalese refugee camp with her husband Dili and their 8-month-old baby daughter. This little family is now in an apartment nearby and just embarking on the huge tasks of learning English, dealing with mind-boggling bureaucratic necessities and looking for jobs.
The Kista Trust, mentioned at the conclusion of the article, is the fund being set up by Elizabeth Walmsley as a micro-loan project specifically to help two Bhutanese refugee families with whatever education, such as English classes or skill-training, that could lead them to becoming more employable.
Final thanks must go to the many members of the wider Chestnut Hill/Mt. Airy community who have availed themselves of the hard-working services of The Nepali Neighbors over the past year. It has been a wonderful introduction for the family to “real Americans.”They have felt welcomed and accepted and are eagerly looking forward to their next steps along the way to citizenship.

Patricia Walmsley
Chestnut Hill

Devon neighbors are right to insist on restoring wall

As a 30-year resident and sometime commuter on the R7 (Chestnut Hill East), I welcome the actions taken to complete the Devon Village units. We need development that strengthens and adds to the commercial activity in the area as an antidote to the great recession.
It is vital, however, that new residences and infrastructure build for the long term rather than adding a layer of construction that could soon be underwater if falling prices leave mortgage debts uncovered – and it is “location” above all else that has worked so far to maintain property values in the area.
The area around Sedgwick Station, after years of lagging behind, has recently surged with much needed restoration of historical homes along East Durham Street.  It has become another pocket of value in the mosaic of Mt. Airy.
Failure to adequately reconstruct and beautify the wall alongside the tracks could lead to steady deterioration, and a sad reversal of this trend , which has brought a number of young families into the area from Boston, New York, Chicago and points beyond.
I hope that we can find the commitment to continue to increase the viability of this neighborhood by enforcing reasonable standards on builders for public access areas. While the SEPTA line may be the back door to Chestnut Hill – it is the one by which hundreds of us come home each day.

Prof. Tom Getzen
Chestnut Hill

Jim brings joy into their lives

Thank you for Jim Harris’ weekly columns in the Chestnut Hill Local. They bring joy and laughter into my life and into the lives of family and friends who look forward to reading them. Since he has such a special sense of humor, I feel compelled to extend a word of appreciation to him for taking the time and the discipline required to share his gift with us.

Patricia Deacon
East Falls

Hilarious ‘cakes’

The “cakes” scandal article by Jim Harris is one of the funniest I have ever read in a newspaper. He keeps getting better and better. My husband and I laughed so much while reading it, it was like good medicine. I thought that every joke that could possibly be made about Anthony Weiner had already been made, but Harris proved me wrong. His take, and the picture of him taking a cake out of the oven, definitely made our day.

Cecelia Davies
Erdenheim