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Sexual Harassment, School Vouchers and more



Forget the Timing
Sometimes the timing isn't up to you. That hasn't stopped the many Monday morning quarterbacks who have railed against the timing of a sexual harassment complaint gone viral. The complaint, filed with the Democratic Party by seven women and released in Utah Policy and The Salt Lake Tribune, comes as the party gets ready for its state convention. The accused, Rob Miller, is running for party chair along with eight others. He claims it's an effort to derail his candidacy and there's barely a shred of truth. The reaction ranges from "despicable" to the "he's a good man" mantra. Without comment on the validity of the allegations, there has been a rush to judgment for sure—against the complainants. Georgetown Law notes there are many reasons that complaints don't happen immediately. So, forget the timing and focus on the facts.


More Options, Please
School vouchers are still in the news—although maybe growing with gusto because of the anti-government sentiment in the nation. Christine Cook, policy analyst for the conservative Sutherland Institute, is making that on-again argument that public schools are failing and privatization is the answer. That poor individualist, she moans in a Utah Policy editorial, cannot be served by this one-size-fits-all philosophy. Her points, however, are stale holdovers of another time. "We have school choice in Utah—have had it for two decades," one commenter notes. Another just wants you to trust parents and he's sure that many options would arise. In Utah, they have. But they're simply not enough. A New York Times article says that vouchers have been disappointing, but the real issue is discernment: "Hardcore reformers, like [Betsy] DeVos, support vouchers and charters. Hardcore traditionalists oppose both. The rest of us should distinguish between them, because their results differ."


Coal Goals
Despite the toxic rhetoric from @realDonaldTrump and Rep. Mike Noel, there likely is a future for something other than coal. The Deseret News has been following a series from Utah Foundation on the future of coal, and despite optimism, it just isn't good. Diversification is likely the key, and that might take some buy-in from the state government. Unemployment in coal country is 50 percent higher than the state as a whole, making the issue about what types of jobs to attract. Meanwhile, in a Salt Lake Tribune story Noel wrongly assumed his Torrey constituents were anti-drilling because, you know, it's Torrey. Ultimately, it's up to each coal town to remake itself.

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