MortonMarcus

Columnist

Marcus is director emeritus of the Indiana Business Research Center at the Kelley School of Business. He has contributed to local and state economic development efforts since 1970. In addition to teaching economics at Indiana University for 33 years, Marcus has served six Indiana governors as an adviser on taxation and economic development. None of his advice has been taken. Marcus was the governor’s liaison to the U.S. Bureau of the Census from 1979 to 2003, has testified before Congress, appeared on the PBS “News Hour with Jim Lehrer,” and consulted with firms and governments throughout the United States and in Southeast Asia. A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Marcus has earned degrees in economics from Roosevelt University in Chicago, Washington University in St. Louis, and the University of California-Los Angeles. He and his wife, Rebecca, reside in Indianapolis. They have three children, six grandchildren, six cats, a dog and a heavy mortgage.

Recent Articles

MARCUS: It would have been different had Noah been a Hoosier

April 19, 2014
The new movie about Noah and his ark, combined with the antics of the General Assembly, led me to setting the fabled story here in the Hoosier state.
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MARCUS: Rising prosperity still an elusive aspiration

February 15, 2014
Sometimes it seems our political leaders know only four-letter words like jobs. They often precede this with another four letter word: good.
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MARCUS: Not the time to emphasize our negatives

November 30, 2013
What is the number one complaint of Hoosier employers? The labor force is outdated. We do not have enough workers with the training and experience to compete with other states and nations.
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MARCUS: Politicians have little influence over jobs

October 5, 2013
Governors and mayors normally talk as if they are personally responsible for bringing jobs to their states and communities. This is nonsense.
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MARCUS: United funding for the arts in Indiana

June 29, 2013
A good friend has come up with a good idea. I know it is a good idea because, when he presented it to me and another friend, both of us were skeptical. Such is the inevitable fate of good ideas among friends.
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MARCUS: Lopsided population shift raises alarms

March 30, 2013
No one pays attention to a sentence buried in the middle of a recent news story out of Indiana University.
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MARCUS: A proposal to put young people to work

January 5, 2013
The Rockefeller Foundation has called for ideas that address the nation’s youth unemployment situation. Here are mine:
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MARCUS: Candidates silent on grave projections

September 29, 2012
In the decade of the Great Depression, the 1930s, the population of Indiana grew 5.8 percent. Later, in the 1970s, a decade of great economic turmoil, the state’s population advanced 5.7 percent. The 1980s saw a strong recession and a subsequent restructuring of American business; Indiana’s population grew a mere 1 percent.
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MARCUS: Labor's vast potential going to waste

August 4, 2012
Today, unions are being peeled so that they become smaller.
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MARCUS: Vouchers are fine, but about those details...

April 14, 2012
Without standards of performance, taxpayers sign blank checks while children are set up for future failures.
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MARCUS: Let's do away with child labor laws, too

January 7, 2012
Many parents would joyfully let their 14-year-olds become roofers, if it meant more money for meth.
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MARCUS: Consumer Price Index proposal costs little, saves a lot

July 30, 2011
For all of our philosophical pondering combined with our statistical cleverness, we cannot figure out what is “living” nor determine its “cost.”
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MARCUS: New Hoosier motto could become 'Be less than you have been'

July 23, 2011
The U.S. Army says, “Be all that you can be.” Indiana is moving toward a different message.
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MARCUS: Multipliers are what you make them

July 9, 2011
New money will not necessarily mean new jobs at the beauty parlor or the barbershop if there are already empty chairs.
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MARCUS: Should we be offended by Times story?

July 2, 2011
Last month, The New York Times ran a story under the headline “Indiana: The Exception? Yes, but …” The story gave a factual presentation of our state’s economic circumstances, but with an overriding sarcasm that left a bad taste in Hoosier mouths.
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MARCUS: A tale of Colts, Packers and Longhorns

June 25, 2011
What we gain by having the Colts and Pacers is mainly a psychological benefit. We feel that we are big league because we have big-league teams carrying our name.
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MARCUS: Hold the celebration; reality is just ahead

June 18, 2011
Frequently, Hoosiers ride as passengers in one of the front cars on the business roller coaster.
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MARCUS: Check out this regional cooperation

June 11, 2011
About 48 hours after the exciting finish of this year’s Indy 500 race, Mayors Wayne Seybold, R-Marion, and Greg Goodnight, D-Kokomo, announced the formation of the Midwest Automotive Loop.
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MARCUS: Should we have commuting policies?

June 4, 2011
In 2009, 80 percent of Hoosiers worked in the county where they lived, with the other 20 percent going elsewhere to work. Hardly a change from data 10 years earlier.
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MARCUS: Numbers say Indiana's economy isn't healthy

May 28, 2011
Usually, when an unemployed person gets a job, the number of people unemployed goes down and the number employed goes up. That’s a healthy economy.
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MARCUS: Lies told about people paying income tax

May 21, 2011
“Liars!” I want to shout. People who lie deliberately and those who lie innocently afflict our nation with falsehoods.
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MARCUS: High school principals as economic drivers

May 14, 2011
From time to time, I am asked: “What is the best investment for Indiana’s economic development”? The answer: our high-school-age young men and women.
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MARCUS: Manufacturing is economy's blessing, bane

May 7, 2011
Manufacturing alone accounted for 53 percent of the decline in what people earned at their private-sector jobs.
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MARCUS: Evansville is the least loser or best of the bad

April 30, 2011
Recent data from the bottom of the recession reveal all seven economic areas that include Indiana counties experienced declines in per-capita personal income.
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MARCUS: Uptight music for uncertain times

April 23, 2011
The blues resonate with the tough people living tough lives.
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MARCUS: What is it worth? TV has the answer

April 16, 2011
Discovering value emerged as a TV staple long before the recent economic tsunami.
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MARCUS: No statistics on death by pothole

April 9, 2011
Nothing stirs the imagination like a near-death experience.
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MARCUS: The recovery is over ... or maybe not

April 2, 2011
The recession in Indiana and the nation lasted only three quarters. But the Hoosier recovery took six quarters.
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  1. How can any company that has the cash and other assets be allowed to simply foreclose and not pay the debt? Simon, pay the debt and sell the property yourself. Don't just stiff the bank with the loan and require them to find a buyer.

  2. If you only knew....

  3. The proposal is structured in such a way that a private company (who has competitors in the marketplace) has struck a deal to get "financing" through utility ratepayers via IPL. Competitors to BlueIndy are at disadvantage now. The story isn't "how green can we be" but how creative "financing" through captive ratepayers benefits a company whose proposal should sink or float in the competitive marketplace without customer funding. If it was a great idea there would be financing available. IBJ needs to be doing a story on the utility ratemaking piece of this (which is pretty complicated) but instead it suggests that folks are whining about paying for being green.

  4. The facts contained in your post make your position so much more credible than those based on sheer emotion. Thanks for enlightening us.

  5. Please consider a couple of economic realities: First, retail is more consolidated now than it was when malls like this were built. There used to be many department stores. Now, in essence, there is one--Macy's. Right off, you've eliminated the need for multiple anchor stores in malls. And in-line retailers have consolidated or folded or have stopped building new stores because so much of their business is now online. The Limited, for example, Next, malls are closing all over the country, even some of the former gems are now derelict.Times change. And finally, as the income level of any particular area declines, so do the retail offerings. Sad, but true.

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