February 17, 2023

Twenty-one million American adults will have or have had a major clinical depression episode, and U.S. Sen. John Fetterman has joined those ranks, he announced this week. Thank you, senator, for sharing your story, and we hope others suffering from depression follow your lead.

Meanwhile, our other U.S. senator, Bob Casey, Jr. has emerged from prostate surgery with flying colors, and we wish him continued progress in his fight against cancer. By the way, roughly 13 out of every 100 American males will get prostate cancer, which affects Black men even more acutely. Go get a checkup!

We send out our condolences to Eagles Nation, whose dreams of a second Super Bowl were dashed by the Kansas City Chiefs. Told of the suffering of Philly fans, Cleveland yelled SHUT THE HELL UP!

President Joe Biden met with the nation’s governors to ask them to, pretty please, spend all of their federal stimulus money. Never thought we would see the day when governors refused to spend federal largesse, but we live in very weird times. See: shooting at balloons with missiles.

On that subject, the Biden administration is shooting things out of the sky at an alarmingly quick pace. It was uncovered this week that our military, which spends about a trillion bucks a year on personnel and equipment, fired a $400,000 projectile at a ham radio air balloon. Ham radio balloons, as you may recall, were potent military weapons on Hogan’s Heroes in the 1960s.

After a two-month hiatus, the Pennsylvania House will return next week, and there will be a lot of angry swallows flocking to this particular Capistrano, people. Keep your heads on a swivel. There will be some caucuses that are as raucous as Caracas.

According to House Speaker Mark Rozzi, the first piece of legislative business will be the consideration of a bill dealing with statute-of-limitations reform for sexual assault victims. This, you may recall if you were paying one iota of attention, was the price of poker that made Rozzi the presiding officer in the first place. What happens after this vote? Roll the dice.

This seems like a good time for you to familiarize yourself with the life and work of the nation’s first Black speaker of the House, K. Leroy Irvis. After you have read it, come to our Triad Happy Hour on Tuesday and let our own Mike Manzo tell you of how a harmless gift from now-deceased Rep. Bud George almost landed Irvis in a Dauphin County prison!

We pause for a quick Shameless Client Plug for our good friends at Pocono Organics, who were certified this week by the Regenerative Organic Alliance. This is a very big deal, and huge congrats go out to them!

There is a kerfuffle brewing between the state’s medical marijuana overseers and the media, who want access to data the Department of Health says are private and therefore VERBOTEN! Not knowing specifics, it would be irresponsible for us to weigh in with our opinions, but we know this much: nothing chaps the media like a Right to Know request denied.

Norfolk Southern continues to trip all over its derailment disaster response out in eastern Ohio, proving yet again that even the most successful companies had better have a crisis communications plan in place. When your immediate response to the concerned people of East Palestine is “Here is 25,000 bucks, now kick rocks,” it is tough to turn that around.

Following in the footsteps of former Gov. Tom Wolf, current Gov. Josh Shapiro will also implement a moratorium on the death penalty in Pennsylvania. Considering there have been only three people executed in Pennsylvania since the bicentennial (all under Gov. Tom Ridge), it is not a huge piece of news. But there will be controversy, because the legislature picking a state reptile took three years and almost started a land war, thanks to an unnamed now-Triad staffer. Fine, it was Todd Brysiak.

The U.S. Treasury Department is warning that the nation will default on its debt obligations sometime between May and September, which seems more like a guess than anything. If you asked us when our paycheck will run out, we can give you that info and be accurate up to the minute. Also, we know that Congress does not do big things until there is a deadline looming. If your deadline is 120 days long, you have a problem, Jack Spratt.

We give a fond farewell this week to the legendary Angelo Cataldi, the all-time record holder for Philly sports-talk radio longevity. Enjoy retirement, sir!

Over on the Triad Socials, say congrats to Brandi Hunter-Davenport, who landed on City and State’s Power of Diversity: Black 100 list. She makes us proud every day!

Also, do NOT let the day go by without wishing our own Megan Dapp a very happy birthday. We hear it is a big one! Cake, candles and wine to you, Megan!

In our We Can’t Make This Up segment, our own Sarah Spotts (procurement nerd extraordinaire) found a slightly odd procurement solicitation from the State Police: seeking a vendor to buy horses.  Apparently, the department’s pilot program of asking the losing horses at Penn National Racetrack each night if they “ever considered a rewarding career in law enforcement” was not producing results.

That’s what passes for news around here as we await the start of the real lawmaking up in here! Much will be said, hearts will be broken, dreams will come true and other dreams shattered. And we will be here for ALL OF IT! From all your friends at Team Triad, have a great weekend!