Forefront

FRANCISCO: The answer to the question is yes, to both extremes

March 15, 2014
Karen Francisco / Special to IBJ
“The editorial was typical of The Journal Gazette’s ultra-liberal, atheistic, secular, humanistic rhetoric,” a letter-writer complains. “You need to quit channeling Fox News,” writes another.
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JONES: Hoosiers still processing change with wary eye

March 15, 2014
Max Jones / Special to IBJ
A casual glimpse of recent developments in Indiana politics might suggest Hoosiers are in the throes of an identity crisis. As a traditional dead-red state, Indiana produced few surprises. Republicans, for the most part, rule the roost, even with the occasional presence of Democratic governors or slight majority of Dems in the state’s House of Representatives.
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SOUDER: Moral issues are dead in Indiana politics—for nowRestricted Content

March 15, 2014
Mark Souder / Special to IBJ
This debate is not new. A famous president of Purdue University once said that whoever raised the abortion debate was the loser. Political debate over issues such as gay marriage, abortion, marijuana, prayer in schools, hiring rights of religious organizations, and posting of the Ten Commandments has long been a part of the American political process.
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TAFT: Indianapolis vacant housing at critical crossroadsRestricted Content

March 15, 2014
Bill Taft / Special to IBJ
Neighborhood and local government leaders in Indianapolis increasingly face a dilemma: Let tax-foreclosed houses sit vacant or enable their acquisition by large, scattered-site rental investors.
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SPALDING: Take the transit money while the fed's hand is openRestricted Content

March 15, 2014
Every time I see an IndyGo story, I brace myself for the good, the bad and the oh-so ugly.
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WESTERHAUS-RENFROW: Crime undermines Indy’s many advancementsRestricted Content

March 15, 2014
Charlotte Westerhaus-Renfrow / Special to IBJ
In his recent State of the City address, Mayor Ballard expanded on a familiar theme of making Indianapolis a more livable city, one that can build on its unique amenities to attract middle- and upper-income residents back into Marion County and even the old city limits.
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BOEHM: Airport is shortsighted location for justice centerRestricted Content

March 15, 2014
Ted Boehm / Special to IBJ
Like almost everyone familiar with the Marion County courts, I applaud Mayor Ballard’s proposal to address the long-recognized need for a judicial center. The proposal would leave the civil courts in the City-County Building but consolidate the criminal courts and their associated agencies in one complex.
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PARR: Taxes, budget surpluses and dueling ideologiesRestricted Content

March 15, 2014
Riley Parr / Special to IBJ
For some time now, there has been a concerted effort—primarily by Republicans—to tackle tax reform. Essentially, the plan is to lower rates for all Americans and close loopholes, doing so in a revenue-neutral manner.
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LANOSGA: Run government like a business? Which business?Restricted Content

March 15, 2014
Gerry Lanosga / Special to IBJ
Which is better: business or government? Before you answer, consider two cases.
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MASSON: New slogan destined for 'Wander Indiana' infamyRestricted Content

March 15, 2014
Doug Masson / Special to IBJ
The Indiana Office of Tourism Development has announced that “Honest to Goodness Indiana” is the new slogan with which it will attempt to promote the state to tourists. IBJ reported that slogan was the product of a panel of 30 individuals within the travel, tourism and hospitality industries, government leaders, and representatives from both the public and private sectors as well as a development process including input from nearly 8,000 consumers.
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MADISON: Hoosiers, the American Dream, and 'jest a bein' rich'Restricted Content

March 15, 2014
James H. Madison / Special to IBJ
Indiana was for a century and a half the heartland of the American Dream. Pioneers bought land cheaply, built log cabins, grew corn, and soon acquired iron stoves and store-bought clothing.
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KETZENBERGER: It isn't about the destination; it's about the questRestricted Content

March 15, 2014
John Ketzenberger / Special to IBJ
When I was a kid with a tank full of cheap gas and nothing but time on my hands, I’d drive all over the countryside trying to get lost.
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GARRISON: Planned Parenthood's latest subsidized exploitRestricted Content

March 15, 2014
Greg Garrison / Special to IBJ
So I am preparing for the show one recent morning when what to my wondering eyes should appear but a story at Breitbart.com about a new PR campaign being launched by Planned Parenthood of Northern New England. The subject? Bondage, discipline, sadism and masochism for “active teens.”
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RASMUSSEN: Politics now minus-sum game where everyone losesRestricted Content

March 15, 2014
Scott Rasmussen / Special to IBJ
“A simple recipe for violence: promise a lot, deliver a little. Lead people to believe they will be much better off, but let there be no dramatic improvement.” The brilliant political scientist Aaron Wildavsky wrote these words in 1968 while America was engulfed in race riots and anti-war protests. Sadly, his words from long ago eerily describe the politics of 21st-century America.
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CARPENTER: The governor finesses controversial issuesRestricted Content

February 15, 2014
Dan Carpenter / Special to IBJ
To the Matador, we don’t matter. All he has heard so far when he bows ever so deep toward the grandstand is, “Olé!”•
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STYRING: Stereotypes aside, business taxes really do matterRestricted Content

February 15, 2014
Bill Styring / Special to IBJ
Gov. Mike Pence has proposed eliminating property taxes on business machinery and equipment. How exactly that is to be done, and over what time frame, he has left to the wisdom of the General Assembly.
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VAUGHN: Fixing a rigged game requires neutral refereesRestricted Content

February 15, 2014
Julia Vaughn / Special to IBJ
Allowing legislators to draw their own districts is like the NBA allowing the home team to hire its own officials; it would be an obvious conflict of interest that would discredit the process and lead to unfair play. That’s why redistricting reform tops Common Cause Indiana’s legislative agenda and why I’m pleased that the House took action early this session by passing House Bill 1032.<
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ROGERS: Pence's plan should be extended universallyRestricted Content

February 15, 2014
Earline Rogers / Special to IBJ
I commend the governor for recognizing the state’s long overdue need to expand access to quality early-childhood education. In my years as a teacher, I found the difference between students arriving with a preschool education and those without to be profound.
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YODER: Funds are better allocated to existing school districtsRestricted Content

February 15, 2014
Carlin Yoder / Special to IBJ
As the General Assembly works through the 2014 session, a familiar issue has risen to the forefront of discussion and debate. It’s the idea of providing funding for children to attend pre-kindergarten programs.
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MAHERN: The substantial life of a Democratic pillarRestricted Content

February 15, 2014
Louis Mahern / Special to IBJ
I first met Mary Berry in the fall of 1960, but I’m getting ahead of myself.
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BECK: Get to know those the amendment would affectRestricted Content

February 15, 2014
Lara Beck / Special to IBJ
Since the General Assembly convened in January, it seems that nearly everyone I’ve talked to has an opinion on House Joint Resolution 3, the divisive constitutional amendment that defines marriage as between a woman and a man.
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SIDDIQUI: When religious and civic values collideRestricted Content

February 15, 2014
Shariq Siddiqui / Special to IBJ
The recent decision by the Plainfield-based Islamic Society of North America to support the Employment Non-Discrimination Act has created concern among some Muslim Hoosiers.
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KRULL: Marriage message boxes Pence into contradictionRestricted Content

February 15, 2014
John Krull / Special to IBJ
So much for being governor of all the people of Indiana. Earlier this month, not long after the House of Representatives voted to strip the controversial second sentence out of House Joint Resolution 3—the proposed state constitutional amendment banning gay marriage—Gov. Mike Pence told WISH-TV Channel 8 that he supported the HJR 3 in its original form.
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MACALLISTER: We change our laws to match our definitions of truthRestricted Content

February 15, 2014
P.E. MacAllister / Special to IBJ
I wrote a piece recently that suggested truth is not eternal but transient. It moves, changes, flexes.
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MARCUS: Rising prosperity still an elusive aspirationRestricted Content

February 15, 2014
Morton Marcus
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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