Post-Standard, The (Newspaper) - January 28, 2005, Syracuse, New York
PAGE A-12 THE POST-STANDARD Friday, January The Post-Standard PO. BOX 4915, SYRACUSE, NEW YORK 13Z21-4915 STEPHEN ROGERS President STEPHEN A. ROGERS, Editor and Publisher MICHAEL J. CONNOR, Executive Editor STAN LINHORST, Senior Managing Editor MARK LISBON, Editorial Page Editor WILLIAM ALLISON, Advertising Director JEFFREY A. BARBER, Circulation Director CHRISTOPHER M. BECKER, Information Systems Director PATRICIA A. McALUNEY, Production Director ALICE MIRANDA, Controller ANNETTE PETERS, Human Resources Director THE STANDARD: 1829, THE POST: 1894, THE POST-STANDARD: 1899 For 200-Plus, a Working Hotel The 350-room con- vention center hotel proposed to go up in a parking lot on Harris- on Street would be more than just a build- ing. It would be a workplace for more than 200 people on a daily basis. Jobs are economic development, too, an aspect of this proposal that is being over- looked in the city's in- sistence on a revenue stream or a lump- sum windfall from the county project. The hotel would employ a general man- ager and an assistant. Department heads would be responsible for accounting, res- ervations, sales and marketing, food and beverages, security and maintenance. Full-time and part-time workers would make up the housekeeping staff. Half of the 800 people now employed by the Oncenter complex are city resi- dents. It's fair to expect that half of the File Frank Ordonez. 2004 HOTEL WORKERS lost jobs when the Hotel Syracuse closed. A new downtown hotel could put more than 200 people to work. employees at the pro- posed hotel would be Syracusans, perhaps residents of nearby low-income neighbor- hoods where unem- ployment is high. In addition, a stronger convention business downtown would spill over to create work for flo- rists, taxi drivers, cleaners, suppliers, restaurant workers, and others creating an estimated 200 jobs in local small busi- nesses. And that's not counting the 400 to 500 construction workers who would be em- ployed over 18 months. Talk about revenue streams how about the paychecks that would land in the pockets of several hundred more peo- ple? That's an improvement over the sev- eral people who now work at the open parking lot. Right medicine; dosage may be off Starting Monday, licensed child-care providers around the state will no longer be able to give medicine to children unless they have met certain regulations set by the state Office of Children and Family Services. Child-care facilities will be required to have state-approved plans detailing how health-care issues are han- dled. The> must be overseen by a health- care "consultant." And staff members who disperse medicine must complete an eight-hour training course and have certi- fication in CPR and first aid- Certainly, the state is right not to wait until a tragedy has occurred to tighten up regulations for the way medicine is ad- ministered by child-care facilities. But should the rules be more flexible? For ex- ample, couldn't the state have allowed Selling ideas and selling out Like Oscar Wilde, some journalists can resist anything except temptation. This week came word that a second syndicated columnist took money from the Bush administration to further its agenda and didn't inform readers. Maggie Gallagher, whose column appears in newspapers across the country (though not in The admitted she received back in 2002 to help promote the administration's marriage ini- tiative. She said she was hired for her decades of expertise, not to shill for the White House. Yet five months after sealing the deal, Gallagher wrote a glowing review of the plan. In compromising herself this way, she loses credibility as an indepen- dent voice, and loses more points for not telling of her financial connection to the Social mobility defines future parents to sign a waiver allowing some providers to give an aspirin or prescrip- tion medicine approved by parents? What happens, for example, if the staff person who can administer the medicine is absent from work? The state does allow certain relatives, employed by a child-care facility, to give medicine to a child-relative. But the crite- ria are puzzling. A spouse of a great-aunt can hand out medicine, but a second cous- in cannot. Undoubtedly, children's safety is the chief concern, as a state spokesman point- ed out. But the state may find that its rules need adjusting in a way that helps parents and providers and doesn't endanger the welfare of children. DAVID BROOKS___________ SYNDICATED COLUMNIST Jn his inau- gural address, President Bush embraced the grandest theme of American foreign policy the advance of freedom around the world. Now that attention is turning to the State of the Union address, it would be nice if he would de- vote himself as passionately to the grandest theme of domestic policy social mobility. The United States is a country based on the idea that a person's birth does not determine his or her destiny. Our favorite stories involve immigrants climbing from obscurity to success. Our amazing work ethic is predicated on the assumption that enterprise and effort lead to ascent. "I hold the value of life is to improve one's Lincoln de- clared. i The problem is that in even7 I generation conditions emerge I that threaten to close down op- I portunity and retard social mo- j bility. Each generation has to re- open the pathways to success. l Today, for example, we may still believe American society is j uniquely dynamic, but we're de- ceiving'ourselves. European so- cieties, which seem more class- driven and less open, have just as much social mobility as the United States does. Economists and sociologists do not all agree, but it does seem i there is at least slightly less movement across income qum- tiles than there was a few dec- ades ago. Sons' income levels correlate more closely to those of their fathers. The income lev- els of brothers also correlate more closely. That suggests that the family you were born into matters more and more to how you will fare in life. That's a problem because we are not sup- posed to have a hereditary class structure in this country. But we are developing one. In the information age, education matters more. In an age in which education matters more, family matters still more, because as James Coleman established dec- ades ago, family status shapes educational achievement. Al the top end of society we have a mass upper middle class. This is made up of hiehlv educa- ted people who move into highly educated neighborhoods and raise then- kids in good schools with the children of other highly educated parents. These kids de- velop wonderful skills, get into good colleges (the median fami- ly income of a Harvard student is now then go out and have their own children, who develop the same sorts of wonderful skills and who repeat the cycle all over again. In this way these highly edu- cated elites produce a paradox a hereditary meritocratic class. It becomes harder for middle- class kids to compete against members of the hyper-charged educated class. Indeed, the mid- dle-class areas become more so- cially isolated from the highly educated areas. And this is not even to speak of the children who grow up in neighborhoods in which more boys go to jail than to college, in which'marriage is not the norm before child-rearing, in which homes are often unstable, in which long-range planning is ab- surd, in which the social skills you need to achieve are not even passed down. In his State of the Union ad- dress. Bush is no doubt going to talk about his vision of an own- ership society. But homeowner- ship or pension ownership is only part of a larger story. The larger story is the one Lincoln defined over a century ago, the idea that this nation should pro- vide an open field and a fair chance so that all can compete in the race of Me. Today that is again under threat, but this time from banners that are different than the ones defined by socialists in the in- dustrial age. Now, the upper class doesn't so much oppress the lower class. It just outper- forms it generation after generation. Now the crucial in- equality is not only finance capi- tal, it is social capital. Now it is silly to make a distinction be- tween economic policy and so- cial policy. We can spend all we want on schools. But if families are dis- rupted, if the social environment is dysfunctional, bigger budgets won't help. Bush spoke grandly about for- eign policy last Thursday, bor- rowing from Lincoln. Lincoln's other great cause was social mo- bility. That is worth embracing too. David Brooks is a columnist for The New York Times. policy-makers she praises. This follows revelations that conserva- tive writer and TV pundit Armstrong Wil- liams was under contract with the Depart- ment of Education to back the president's No Child Left Behind Act in 2003. Now Democrats are calling for a broad review of White House press manipula- tion. At his news conference Wednesday, President Bush distanced himself from this PR-blitz-turned-PR-fiasco. "We will not be paying commentators to advance our he asserted, adding that he was not behind the Armstrong and Gal- lagher arrangements. To which he might have added: Colum- nists ought to be able to tell the difference between selling their expertise and selling out. U.S. blowing smoke at world Key 'mefh' component is too easy to obtain Police bust more than methamphetarrune labs each year, an increasing number of them in Upstate New York. Often, the labs are relatively- small operations, with the highly addictive drug cooked in kitch- ens. Ironically, lab operators have easy, legal access to a key ingre- dient used in making meth. It's pseudoephedrine, found in some cold medicines in drugstores and supermarkets. That's why a bill in the U.S. Senate restricting sales of prod- ucts containing pseudoephedrine The hill would re- quire customers to snow a pnoto ID to a pharmacy worker before Consider this signing for and purchasing such medicines. It also would limit how much customers could buy each month. Police and prosecutors say the legislation would go a long way in slowing the meth trade. The chain drug-store industry is op- posed, saying it would create un- reasonable barriers for custom- ers. But meth abuse is the fastest- growing drug threat in America. Such minor inconveniences would be a small price to pay to help keep meth off the street. vfflwwnl WWWH come? SfcofM yot core? Should Ward Churchill be oisinvueo jrom naiuiuua College? The Clinton County college is in an uproar after word surfaced the outspoken Native American activist and University of Colorado professor is due on campus Feb. 3. He plans to talk about his inflammatory essay on 1, in which he dismissed the World Trade Center victims as "little Eichmanns" serving "the mighty engine of Hamilton is an odd venue for Vioc scholarship fund in memory of three alumni killed in the terror attacks. If the powers-that-be re- scind the invitation, they can pretend to strike a blow for de- cency, while eroding academic freedom by a few grains. If Churchill's visit comes off, however, he can pretend to be taking a courageous stand for bis DERRICK Z..JACKSON SYNDICATED COLUMNIST Local insani- ty plus global inanity adds up to an embarrass- ing American moment. Last week, a 37-year-old man in a caffeine craze parked his Hummer in loading zone in Boston's Back Bay. By the time he rushed in and out of Star- bucks, a meter maid was writing out a ticket. The driver was so outraged, he allegedly threw the scalding cup at the meter maid. She got first-degree bums on her face. The man said he merely slipped on the ice. Police so far believe the meter maid and charged him with assault with a deadly weapon. This week, researchers at Yale and Columbia, in collaboration with the World Economic Forum, published its latest index of global environmental steward- ship. Out of 146 nations, the United States, the world's richest nation, ranked only 45th for pro- tecting the environment. This is even more ridiculous based on who is ahead of us. The United States with a gross domestic product of according to the CIA World Handbook, trails Gabon, Peru, Paraguay, Costa Rica, Bo- livia, Colombia, Albania, Cen- tral African Republic, Panama, Namibia, Russia, Botswana, Papua New Guinea, Malaysia, Congo, Mali, Chile, Bhutan, and Armenia. Those 19 nations all the Central African Republic's Mali's and Con- go's The average American has 54 times more money in GDP terms than the average person in Congo. Yet the Congolese ex- hibit better stewardship of the planet. An angry man in one of America's largest gas-guzzling cars in one of the most chron- ically congested parts of the city throws some of the nation's most expensive coffee at a working- class woman. At the same time, we receive yet more evidence how we blow smoke in the face of the world with our pollution and refuse to join the other 136 nations and re- gional economic groups that signed the international Kyoto agreement on global warming. There is absolutely no reason we cannot move to levels other countries have already shown to be Levy said. On environmental steward- ship, it is easy to forget that in the 1970s, the United States led the world in cleaning up air pol- lution, said Marc Levy, associate director of Columbia Universi- ty's Center for International Earth Science Information Net- work, one ol toe authors of me 2005 Environmental Sustainabil- ity Index. "Europe was way behind Levy said over the telephone yesterday. "Our big advance in the '70s was clear targets on air quality, with incentives and pun- ishments, putting catalytic con- verters in cars and smokestack WlUUV Mi as provocateur. there. In the past 10 years, Eu- rope has passed us and we're 50 percent below most countries over there on average." Levy said that Europe has vaulted past us with far more strategic efforts to promote rail transportation, reduce coal burn- ing, and recycling solid waste, all of which are stifled in the United States by special-interest lobbying that turns politicians into cowards and wrongfully convinces working-class workers that less pollution means less jobs. "The striking thing on the positive side is that we're still not only the world leader but re- main far ahead of the rest of the world in the science and technol- ogy available to us. If we put our resouices to work effectively, we may not only get our own house in order but help alleviate things globally." Stewardship, as defined by Bush, was taking a draft report by the Environmental Protection Agency and deleting the part that specifically mentioned vehicle exhaust and industrial pollution as major factors in global warm- ing. In his second inaugural ad- dress, Bush talked at length about spreading liberty through- out the world. We can grant no liberty when we enslave the planet to our consumption. The United States refuses to stop hogging resources. A man in a giant car in a dense neigh- borhood refuses to accept the re- sult of hogging an illegal space. The United States leads the world in heating up the planet The man bums a woman's face. Globally and locally, we are ere- going as low as Bhutan's But we pretty much stopped Z. Jackson is based in Boston.