THE MEASURES Mayor Nutter and his Cabinet have proposed to solve the city financial crisis are a pure example of disaster-capitalism methodology:
Cut public services, and blame workers' salaries, benefits and pensions for the deficit in order to implement cutbacks and exclude tax increases from the remedial mix.
Forgotten is the fact that, while in the Council, Mayor Nutter consistently favored real-estate tax abatement for upscale residential construction in the city, resulting in revenue losses that we can ill afford now.
Given the depressed prices of real estate, the sale of the 11 library buildings will offer developers the opportunity to acquire valuable land for a song. This is the sort of treatment that this country has often imposed on distressed foreign economies, with disastrous consequences for the population. Now we are being treated with a dose of our own medicine.
Ada Bello, Philadelphia
I'm concerned about the closing of our libraries. For decades, we've been talking about education. We need better classrooms, more textbooks, certified teachers, better parenting. Everyone, from City Council to the mayor, governor and the president talks about education.
So what do we cut? The libraries in neighborhoods where they are so desperately needed.
In some neighborhoods, it's the only place children can go for refuge to escape some of the negatives in their surroundings. They can become whatever they want to be or travel wherever they want - in a place where it's safe.
Why doesn't the mayor look around City Hall for cuts? Sometimes I have to go there and am appalled at the drones who blatantly sit at their desks with nothing to do and are not embarrassed by the fact that they're doing nothing.
I'm sure throughout City Hall there are plenty of people who should be in jeopardy of losing their jobs. That's where you should be cleaning house. I'm sure the revenue would make a sizable dent in budget cuts.
I'm just a concerned citizen. I have grown children and grandchildren, but my passion for education never ceases.
By closing these libraries, the city is putting another nail in the coffin of education.
Lois Yampolsky, Philadelphia