Recent Blog Posts

Oppose Daniels, oppose change?

February 26, 2008
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A new statewide poll shows a high correlation between registered voters who intend to vote for Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama and incumbent Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels. Obama and Daniels are almost polar opposites philosophically, so what gives? Mostly...
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Drugmakers versus consumers

February 25, 2008
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Congress and the courts long have tried to balance regulations to try to protect consumers while giving companies space to operate. Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled 8-1 to limit lawsuits against medical device makers if the Food...
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Business journalists and recession

February 22, 2008
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Forbes Publisher Rich Karlgaard thinks business journalists are stirring up recession talk. In a column this week with a takeout headlined â??Business press incompetence and fear,â?? Karlgaard advises against believing everything one reads. Hereâ??s what he writes: â??Want to know the truth about...
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Contrasting United Way, Wheeler

February 20, 2008
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Businesses and their employees opened pockets last year to enable United Way of Central Indiana to hit a record $39 million in contributions. The not-for-profit attributed the good news to hustle by campaign co-chairmen who offered money from their...
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Do you feel poorer?

February 20, 2008
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Inflation is speeding up and wage growth is slowing down, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics said this morning. Blame rising oil prices for the inflation and the slowing economy for the sluggish wage growth, says the Economic Policy Institute, a...
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Affordable housing...again

February 19, 2008
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Indianapolis is now the most affordable large market in which to buy a house 10 quarters running. Thatâ??s according to an index the National Association of Home Builders and Wells Fargo put out this afternoon. In the past quarter, 46.6 percent...
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Fear grips donors to charity

February 19, 2008
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Wheeler Mission Ministries broke the unsettling news yesterday that it is laying off 13 staff and shifting its ministries for youth and families to another charity in order to minimize an anticipated operating deficit. Why? Donors are worried about...
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Is film tax break a bad idea?

February 15, 2008
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Gov. Mitch Daniels had sharp words for legislators after they finished overriding his veto of tax breaks for the film industry. â??Itâ??s truly an irresponsible decision, and I canâ??t imagine what they were thinking,â?? he fired off in a statement yesterday. Are...
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Kentucky as gambling competitor

February 15, 2008
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The developing story in Kentucky about its new governorâ??s attempt to legalize casinos isnâ??t getting a lot of play in Indianapolis, but the fallout could be huge if he succeeds. Steve Beshear wants a dozen casinos to try to stop gamblers...
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IUPUI and IU business degrees

February 14, 2008
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The undergraduate business program at IUPUI used to let in just about anyone. At one point, only the bottom 10 percent of a high school graduating class was steered to Ivy Tech or elsewhere. Got a business degree from IUPUI? It...
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WellPoint yanks controversial letter

February 13, 2008
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Californians are howling over the recent discovery that one of WellPointâ??s units made a practice of asking doctors to report conditions that the insurance company could use to cancel medical coverage for new patients. The letter amounted to asking doctors to...
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Township government travails

February 12, 2008
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Center Township Trustee Carl Drummer may be a nice guy, but he sure knows how to squirrel away taxpayer dollars, IBJ reporter Peter Schnitzler showed us in this weekendâ??s IBJ. Drummer has racked up a $7.1 million surplus â??...
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Do doctors make too much money?

February 12, 2008
Comments(7)
Health insurance companies including Indianapolis' own WellPoint Inc. have been relentless in trying to suppress spiraling health costs. So relentless, in fact, that doctors are pushing back. Physician groups in Kokomo, Rushville and other cities are refusing to take new patients...
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Paying extra for hormone-free milk

February 7, 2008
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Grocery stores are rejecting milk from cows that have been injected with a growth hormone that stimulates milk production. Kroger, Dean Foods and others are responding to consumers who are jittery about recombinant bovine somatotropin, or rbST, which has been used since...
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Lucy, footballs and General Motors

February 6, 2008
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For a long time, General Motors has told us its newest model would drive back the Germans, Japanese and more lately the Koreans. Those who believed, of course, must feel like Charlie Brown after Lucy yanks away the football. Now GM is getting...
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A new desire for streetcars

February 5, 2008
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Electric streetcars are an old idea that should be brought back, some civic leaders believe. IBJ reporter Chris Oâ??Malley writes today that heavyweights including Indiana Convention and Visitors Association President Bob Bedell are backing a not-for-profit called Downtown Indianapolis...
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Who will win the banking wars?

February 4, 2008
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Itâ??s no secret that banks are in upheaval thanks to the subprime mortgage crisis and the domino affect mess itâ??s creating. In an IBJ story over the weekend, reporter Cory Schouten discusses the local grab for market share, as...
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Seeking your take on the markets

February 4, 2008
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You IBJ readers are a wealthy lot. Our latest survey, taken in September of last year, shows that you had a $170,700 median household income and the median value of your investments came to $679,700. Three of four had corporate stocks...
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Adding to the life science corridor

February 1, 2008
Comments(2)
For years, dreamers have envisioned a life sciences crescent stretching from West Lafayette down Interstate 65 to Indianapolis, then along State Road 37 to Bloomington. The thinking was, this corridor would take advantage of Indiana and Purdue universities and IUPUI as...
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Are these incentives a good deal?

January 31, 2008
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Gov. Mitch Daniels dished out $6.3 million in incentives as part of Defender Directâ??s expansion announcement yesterday. But was the carrot a good deal for us taxpayers? Defender Direct, which sells home security and satellite dish systems, plans to add 1,100...
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Immigration bill to become law?

January 30, 2008
Comments(37)
The Indiana Senate made its sentiment clear yesterday by approving the immigration bill by the gaping margin of 37-11 and firing it on to the House. This is the bill that would make businesses liable for knowingly hiring illegal immigrants. With this...
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Ranking Indianapolis' best mayor

January 30, 2008
Comments(4)
Former Indianapolis mayors have a way of staying in the news. Richard Lugar has climbed to the top echelons of the U.S. Senate. Bill Hudnut is quoted regularly from his position at the Urban Land Institute, a Washington, D.C., not-for-profit that...
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Are unions making a comeback?

January 29, 2008
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Weâ??re accustomed to hearing that unions represent a smaller and smaller proportion of the American work force. Yet, government figures released last week show the first increase in union membership in 24 years, with about 12.1 percent of workers in unions....
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Spending your government check

January 24, 2008
Comments(7)
If you pay taxes, President Bush and leaders in Congress have agreed to send you at least $600 in the hope youâ??ll spend it and pump more life into the economy. They have their wishes, but Americans are independent sorts. What would...
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Blame Daniels for the economy?

January 23, 2008
Comments(6)
At this point four years ago, now-Gov. Mitch Daniels had started outlining a platform based on revitalizing the economy. The economy had been headed south since the â??70s and had taken another beating early in the decade. Voters were only too...
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  1. I took Bruce's comments to highlight a glaring issue when it comes to a state's image, and therefore its overall branding. An example is Michigan vs. Indiana. Michigan has done an excellent job of following through on its branding strategy around "Pure Michigan", even down to the detail of the rest stops. Since a state's branding is often targeted to visitors, it makes sense that rest stops, being that point of first impression, should be significant. It is clear that Indiana doesn't care as much about the impression it gives visitors even though our branding as the Crossroads of America does place importance on travel. Bruce's point is quite logical and accurate.

  2. I appreciated the article. I guess I have become so accustomed to making my "pit stops" at places where I can ALSO get gasoline and something hot to eat, that I hardly even notice public rest stops anymore. That said, I do concur with the rationale that our rest stops (if we are to have them at all) can and should be both fiscally-responsible AND designed to make a positive impression about our state.

  3. I don't know about the rest of you but I only stop at these places for one reason, and it's not to picnic. I move trucks for dealers and have been to rest areas in most all 48 lower states. Some of ours need upgrading no doubt. Many states rest areas are much worse than ours. In the rest area on I-70 just past Richmond truckers have to hike about a quarter of a mile. When I stop I;m generally in a bit of a hurry. Convenience,not beauty, is a primary concern.

  4. Community Hospital is the only system to not have layoffs? That is not true. Because I was one of the people who was laid off from East. And all of the LPN's have been laid off. Just because their layoffs were not announced or done all together does not mean people did not lose their jobs. They cherry-picked people from departments one by one. But you add them all up and it's several hundred. And East has had a dramatic drop I in patient beds from 800 to around 125. I know because I worked there for 30 years.

  5. I have obtained my 6 gallon badge for my donation of A Positive blood. I'm sorry to hear that my donation was nothing but a profit center for the Indiana Blood Center.

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