Pamela Varkonyis a native Pennsylvanian, born and raised in rural Haycock Township, northern Bucks County. She describes her childhood as ...
March 4, 2012
The sport of politics is a mixture of the brutality of bare-knuckle cage fighting and the strategy of a championship chess match. Recently we've watched as that strategy, of both parties, has developed into a contest to see who can manage the most effective — and, in most cases, outrageous — manipulation of women and issues they care about. Like pawns positioned to stop the opponent and protect the kings and queens of the game, the politics of this manufactured cultural divide have moved women around the board to suit the player's needs.
April 2, 2011
Several weeks ago, my phone rang late enough in the evening that it startled me. The caller ID said only "Texas." The voice at the other end was almost unintelligible because of a bad connection and a strong accent. Thinking it was a wrong number or prank call, I was about to hang up when I realized the person was saying "Palmula": "Palmula, it is Mohammad, your friend from Afghanistan." "Why does the caller ID say Texas?" I asked. "I am here, Palmula, I am here."
October 15, 2008
Afghanistan has nearly fallen off the international news radar screen, except when the monthly death toll of American troops tops the number killed in Iraq. While issues from the ridiculous (lipstick on pigs), to the critical, (the loss of trillions of dollars of value in 401K plans), have occupied our minds and television screens, Pakistan slipped closer to chaos, Iraq inched toward independence, and Afghanistan once again looked like a failed state.
Emergency Medicine: Although not perfect, Act 47 could relieve Allentown's symptoms of financial distress
January 16, 2005
In the mid 1980s, as Pennsylvania's old industrial base was collapsing, the state Legislature devised a plan to help distressed municipalities.
December 3, 2004
The holiday season can stress budgets to the breaking point. Your daughter wants a cashmere sweater; you'd love to have a plasma screen TV. But the credit cards are maxed out, the savings account has been drained, and the house is mortgaged to the hilt. The creditors are getting nervous, and you are finally facing the reality that you can no longer maintain your lifestyle. Some painful choices have to be made, the kind of choices that go beyond a little belt-tightening, the kind of choices that involve sacrifice, discipline and responsibility.
May 27, 2002
The envelope looked familiar. It was like the one I had sent off months earlier addressed to the boy who had taken me to the junior prom. A few years older than I, Greg had graduated from high school and joined the Marines. His APO address gave no hint of his location, but I knew he had gone to some far away place. Under my return address, there was a stamp that read, "The Marine Corps regrets it is unable to deliver this letter." I double checked, and the address was correct. I took the envelope to my mother. Even when I saw the sorrow descend from her eyes to her lips and heard the words, "I think Greg's been killed in action," I didn't fully grasp the concept.