December 30, 2011 |
This has not been a good year for despots. North Korea's Kim Jong Il met his maker, Egypt's Hosni Mubarak is under arrest, and Syria's Bashar al-Assad faces a future that looks rocky. But in Philadelphia, City Council members get to rule their districts with an iron hand - at least for now. Philadelphia is one of a dwindling number of big American cities where local legislators adhere to a courtly tradition called councilmanic prerogative. Like its royal antecedent, the prerogative grants the city's 10 district Council members the right to do as they please in their own patch.
September 2, 1990 |
To make sense of Iraqi President Saddam Hussein's claims that Kuwait is really part of Iraq, it helps to go back nearly 70 years to a meeting in a tent in the Arabian desert, where a British high commissioner arbitrarily drew what became the Kuwait-Iraq border. One night in November 1922, Sir Percy Cox, Britain's representative in Baghdad, summoned to his tent Sheik Ibn Saud, soon to become ruler of Saudi Arabia. Cox announced in sharp tones that, in view of an impasse on boundary disputes, he would decide the borders of Arab nations.
August 14, 2015 |
Pennsylvania's highest court will decide whether the Philadelphia School Reform Commission can cancel its teachers' contract. Had the Supreme Court declined to take the case, the SRC's move in October 2014 to cancel its contract with the Philadelphia Federation of Teachers (PFT) would have been voided. The Supreme Court, however, through an order issued Monday, essentially gave the district another shot at achieving by fiat what it has been unable to get at the bargaining table. In January, Commonwealth Court sided with the union, putting aside the SRC's unilateral cancellation of the contract and changes it had imposed on the members' health-care plan.
October 27, 1996 |
Since we were in the neighborhdd traveling through Italy, we thought we'd bop in on San Marino for lunch. San Marino is one of those cute little European countries that have managed to wangle their way through history as independent entities while the rest of the continent bumps and grinds through rough-and-tumble times. Along with Andorra, Monaco, Liechtenstein and Vatican City, San Marino relies on the good humor of the rest of the world to let it stay cute, little and independent.
May 8, 1986 |
Despite President Reagan's ban on U.S. business dealings with Libya, the Pentagon will be permitted to buy a fleet of new bulldozers built by a company partly owned by Moammar Khadafy's government. "An award to a wholly owned subsidiary of a foreign corporation that is 15 percent owned by the government of Libya will not violate the Libyan sanctions regulations severing all direct economic relations with that government," concluded the General Accounting Office, which routinely adjudicates government contracting disputes.
May 14, 1986 |
After initially suggesting that they were bound to award the contract to the lowest bidder, Pentagon officials reversed themselves yesterday and suggested they would try to avoid giving a $7.9 million contract for bulldozers to Fiat because the company is partially owned by Libya. "We're concerned that no profits resulting from our contracts end up in Libya," said Glenn Flood, the Pentagon spokesman. "We don't want that. " Flood said that Pentagon attorneys were reviewing existing regulations to determine whether there was any way to reject the bid by Fiat-Allis to build 178 combat bulldozers for the Marine Corps.
May 3, 1986 |
Some senators are incredulous, but Pentagon officials insist they had no choice but to award a $7.9 million contract for combat bulldozers to an Italian company in which the Libyan government has 15 percent ownership. Since the company, Fiat-Allis, was the low bidder, the Pentagon's legal opinion was that it must get the work, Fred C. Ikle, undersecretary of defense for policy, told a Senate subcommittee Thursday. Since 1977, Fiat, the Italian car company and parent company of Fiat-Allis SpA, has been partly owned by the state-run Libyan-Arab Foreign Investment Bank.
May 12, 2015 |
Linda Spinelli had a wedding to attend. So on a Monday in November, she took her son's 2005 Jeep Grand Cherokee to the Spa Car Wash in Berwyn, where Spinelli was a regular customer. She sat in the lobby while a young worker climbed into the driver's seat. And as the Jeep exited the wash bay, Spinelli and other customers watched in horror. The Jeep suddenly lunged forward, she said, as the driver swerved to avoid pedestrians and slammed into large planters and four cars, including a Maserati.
March 25, 2007 |
A last-minute goal by Kyle Fiat capped a long comeback as the Wings pulled out a 12-11 win over the Chicago Shamrox in a National Lacrosse League game last night at the Wachovia Center. The Wings had not held the lead until the winning goal was scored. Goalie Matt Roik stopped all 10 Chicago shots in the fourth quarter to break a four-game losing streak. Sean Greenhalgh led the Wings with four goals and two assists. Athan Iannucci scored three goals and Jake Bergey added a pair for the Wings.
May 16, 1986 |
Defense Secretary Caspar W. Weinberger, citing national security concerns, has decided to reject a controversial $7.9 million military contract with a company that is partially owned by the Libyan government, a Pentagon spokesman announced yesterday. Robert Sims said Weinberger made his decision out of concern that the Libyan government would benefit if the Pentagon awarded a contract for 178 combat tractors to Fiat-Allis, a subsidiary of Fiat SpA, which is 15 percent owned by a government-owned Libyan bank.