November 15, 2012

A day of surprises

I have been a terribly inconsistent blogger this week mostly due to the fact that A. I forgot to take my computer on an extended road trip; and B. while I brought the Precious (aka the iPhone), I have not mastered the art of composing on thumbs.

I had all kinds of things to write about but instead was as shocked as many people in WV were to find that the state board of education voted 5-2 to fire state school superintendent Jorea Marple, who is is widely respected as an extremely dedicated and competent educator. Most people see this as a power grab by the Manchin faction (as if it needed more). All of those who voted to fire Dr. Marple were appointed by former governor and now senator Joe Manchin and one of the five is his wife. It looks like this may be the opening shot in a brewing battle over the future of education in West Virginia. Marple's husband Darrell McGraw, longtime progressive state attorney general, was defeated in the recent election by an outsider who rode to office on a tidal wave out outsider money.

Far be it from El Cabrero to wish any ill on anybody, but this was vile and I hope that those who did this gain absolutely nothing from it. For what it's worth, I'd also like to express my support for Dr. Marple and best wishes for her future. I know that many, many people here feel the same way.

ANOTHER WV BOMBSHELL went off today as well in the announcement that Patriot Coal intends to phase out mountaintop removal operations. Here are some of the reactions by way of Coal Tattoo. I'd say keep checking that blog for ongoing developments. It's not clear what this means for the future of that kind of mining. Patriot, while a major actor in this area, has been more in the news lately for its bankruptcy and this agreement isn't binding on other companies.


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