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State of the Debate
George Pyle
George Pyle has been a newspaper writer in Kansas, Utah, Upstate New York, and now Utah again, for more than 30 years - most of it as an editorial writer and columnist. Now on his second tour of duty on The Salt Lake Tribune Editorial Board, he has also done a stretch as a talk radio host, published a book on the ongoing flaws of U.S.agricultural policy and, in 1998, was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Editorial Writing. His most active bookmarks are Andrew Sullivan, Christopher Hitchens and Tina Brown. And he still thinks the Internet can be used for intelligent conversation and uplifting ideas.

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Opinion Sampler: Clearing the air - literally and figuratively - and public education ...

Big polluters: State needs federal oversight — Salt Lake Tribune Editorial

It’s telling that Big West Oil in North Salt Lake agreed to invest millions in emission controls only after the Environmental Protection Agency came down hard on the company for violating the federal Clean Air Act. Big oil producers and refiners are, obviously, not going to spend money to avoid dumping toxic pollutants into the public airshed without significant prodding.

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Gov. Gary Herbert’s usual response to demands that the state hold the oil and gas industry to a higher standard of responsibility is to say that the big polluters are already doing everything they can. He favors voluntary compliance with the law and believes the companies will respond if he simply asks them to clean up their operations.

Obviously, Herbert’s view is not realistic. ...

Cheers for town halls — Ogden Standard-Examiner Editorial

... There’s no negative to these public-minded, non-violent examples of speaking your mind. ...

Another boost for state voters’ right to know — Los Angeles Daily News Editorial

... Regulation 18421.5 would require campaign committees to reveal when they pay someone to create digital content — for, say, a blog or a Twitter account — unless that information is provided in the content itself. ...

Enough with the excuses for poor test scores — Casper Star-Tribune Editorial

Near as we can tell, Wyoming public school students are learning more about making excuses than the basics of education.

Perhaps most concerning is the significant amount of students’ apparent inability to apply cognitive skills. In other words, we’re more focused on teaching to test and less on students’ ability to think critically or adapt to new material. ...

Idaho Must Bring Back the Property Tax for its Public Schools — Twin Falls Times-News Editorial

It will take a lot more than higher teachers’ salaries and revised standards to cure the disease that infects Idaho’s public schools. The state’s educational funding mechanism is broken and must be fixed and fixed now. ...

Equipping students to learn — Seattle Times Editorial

Help equip needy students with school supplies, the tools of learning

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