JasonSmith

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VIEWPOINT: Why shouldn't churches pay taxes?

September 17, 2007
Though it probably should not have been, a recent headline in The Indianapolis Star-$2.7 billion in property untaxed in Marion County-was a bit of a stunner. And more so was an adjoining article revealing nearly half of that property to be owned by churches and religious institutions. In the article, the Rev. Kent Millard, senior pastor at St. Luke's United Methodist Church, invoked the separation of church and state as justification for St. Luke's quarter-million-dollar annual tax dodge. And I'm...
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VIEWPOINT: When visionaries, bean counters collide

June 25, 2007
I am a dabbler. The upside of dabbling is that one gets involved in a number of diverse projects throughout one's career. Some great successes, some galactic failures. Either way, the dabbler learns much about many things along the way. One of the lessons learned in a life of dabbling is the unlikely symbiosis between visionaries and bean counters. Like particles of matter and anti-matter in the universe, one cannot exist without the other. And yet, their uncontrolled collision can...
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  1. Looking at the two companies - in spite of their relative size to one another -- Ricker's image is (by all accounts) pretty solid and reputable. Their locations are clean, employees are friendly and the products they offer are reasonably priced. By contrast, BP locations are all over the place and their reputation is poor, especially when you consider this is the same "company" whose disastrous oil spill and their response was nothing short of irresponsible should tell you a lot. The fact you also have people who are experienced in franchising saying their system/strategy is flawed is a good indication that another "spill" has occurred and it's the AM-PM/Ricker's customers/company that are having to deal with it.

  2. Daniel Lilly - Glad to hear about your points and miles. Enjoy Wisconsin and Illinois. You don't care one whit about financial discipline, which is why you will blast the "GOP". Classic liberalism.

  3. Isn't the real reason the terrain? The planners under-estimated the undulating terrain, sink holes, karst features, etc. This portion of the route was flawed from the beginning.

  4. You thought no Indy was bad, how's no fans working out for you? THe IRl No direct competition and still no fans. Hey George Family, spend another billion dollars, that will fix it.

  5. I live downtown Indy and had to be in downtown Chicago for a meeting. In other words, I am the target demographic for this train. It leaves at 6:00-- early but doable. Then I saw it takes 5+ hours. No way. I drove. I'm sure I paid 3 to 5 times as much once you factor in gas, parking, and tolls, but it was reimbursed so not a factor for me. Any business traveler is going to take the option that gets there quickly and reliably... and leisure travelers are going to take the option that has a good schedule and promotional prices (i.e., Megabus). Indy to Chicago is the right distance (too short to fly but takes several hours to drive) that this train could be extremely successful even without subsidies, if they could figure out how to have several frequencies (at least 3x/day) and make the trip in a reasonable amount of time. For those who have never lived on the east coast-- Amtrak is the #1 choice for NY-DC and NY-Boston. They have the Acela service, it runs almost every hour, and it takes you from downtown to downtown. It beats driving and flying hands down. It is too bad that we cannot build something like this in the midwest, at least to connect the bigger cities.

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