Taking Issue

KENNEDY: We’re getting what we deserveRestricted Content

March 8, 2014
Sheila Suess Kennedy
Anyone who has ever written a book, mounted a PR campaign or started a new business has confronted a threshold question: Who’s your audience? Who will read your book, be persuaded by your campaign, or buy your widget?
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RUSTHOVEN: Pence isn’t playing politics with SebeliusRestricted Content

March 1, 2014
Peter J. Rusthoven / Special to IBJ
The Post spins this as surreptitious grabbing for Obamacare dollars.
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KENNEDY: The costs of rejecting scienceRestricted Content

February 22, 2014
Sheila Suess Kennedy
Count me among the many Hoosiers increasingly dismayed by the assault on science from people who seem threatened by the notion that empirical evidence might conflict with their worldviews.
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RUSTHOVEN: Obama’s shifting sands of definitionsRestricted Content

February 15, 2014
Peter J. Rusthoven / Special to IBJ
When this column first talked about Obamacare, a reader called the term disrespectful. The president disagreed—well, he did in 2012—saying he was "fond of this term" and "actually like[s] the name, because I do care—that's why we fought so hard to make it happen."
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KENNEDY: Thinking outside the bankRestricted Content

February 8, 2014
Sheila Suess Kennedy
Let me begin with a caveat: I’m no expert on financial services or the economics of banking. Like most middle-class Americans, my interactions with banking are all decidedly “retail”—checking and savings accounts, mortgages and car loans.
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RUSTHOVEN: The House made the right decisionRestricted Content

February 1, 2014
In January, this conservative testified to the Legislature on behalf of Freedom Indiana against the then-version of the proposed Indiana constitutional amendment on gay marriage. Here’s why.
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KENNEDY: No single religious definition of marriageRestricted Content

January 25, 2014
Sheila Suess Kennedy
Here in Indiana, we’re used to religious warfare. We aren’t called the buckle of the Bible Belt for nothing.
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RUSTHOVEN: Christie's ego goes beyond healthy

January 18, 2014
Peter J. Rusthoven / Special to IBJ
Commentary on New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s current troubles, after aides snarled traffic to punish a mayor who didn’t endorse him, has focused on the impact on his presidential aspirations.
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KENNEDY: Not healthy, wealthy or wiseRestricted Content

January 11, 2014
Sheila Suess Kennedy
Many of us have just wished our friends and loved ones a healthy, happy and prosperous new year. In Indiana, those are going to be elusive goals.
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RUSTHOVEN: Jacobs was a true public servant

January 4, 2014
The death of former congressman Andrew Jacobs Jr. is a sad year-end note for all who knew him during and after his decades of service.
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KENNEDY: Goodbye and good riddanceRestricted Content

December 28, 2013
Sheila Suess Kennedy
State and local corruption flourishes as coverage evaporates; nationally, bought-and-paid-for Congressmen and Senators pass legislation benefitting their donors and patrons at the expense of other Americans.
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RUSTHOVEN: The media misunderstands tax cutsRestricted Content

December 21, 2013
Peter J. Rusthoven / Special to IBJ
Gov. Mike Pence just “outlined an aggressive agenda to bolster education and job initiatives along with a proposal to eliminate the business personal property tax.” The words are from Indiana Fiscal Policy Institute President John Ketzenberger, longtime journalist and longtime friend.
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KENNEDY: A troubling responseRestricted Content

December 14, 2013
Sheila Suess Kennedy
Semester end is hectic for college professors. Research papers and final examinations must be graded, last-minute pleas from students who realize they haven’t performed or who feel entitled to special accommodations must be moderated, committees that haven’t completed their assigned tasks during the preceding months must meet—and of course there’s the added stress of the holidays.
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KENNEDY: So many reasons to be thankful

November 30, 2013
Sheila Suess Kennedy
Thanksgiving is my family’s favorite holiday, not just because it is the one time of the year when all the far-flung relatives assemble, but also because it is an opportunity to consider how incredibly fortunate we are.
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RUSTHOVEN: An Indiana Obamacare snapshot

November 23, 2013
Peter J. Rusthoven / Special to IBJ
Obamacare’s calamitous launch, including the widening gap between promise and reality, continues to consume political discourse. Here’s a quick summary of Indiana’s status:
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KENNEDY: Coats' religion is no defenseRestricted Content

November 16, 2013
Sheila Suess Kennedy
Americans have been using religion to argue for and against laws since the country was founded. Proponents and opponents of slavery both pointed to Bible verses justifying their positions. Opponents of equal rights for women claimed suffrage violated God’s law.
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RUSTHOVEN: Donnelly needs to step upRestricted Content

November 9, 2013
Peter J. Rusthoven / Special to IBJ
Prominently featured on Sen. Joe Donnelly’s website is a column by The Indianapolis Star’s Matt Tully, titled “Donnelly Hits It Down The Middle.” Tully lavishes praise on Donnelly, contrasting him with “partisan warriors such as Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas.”
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KENNEDY: Money doesn’t buy happinessRestricted Content

November 2, 2013
Sheila Suess Kennedy
When my mother told me money can’t buy happiness, she was evidently onto something. Recently, the World Happiness Report recognized Denmark—a cold country with one of those high-tax “socialist, nanny-state” governments—as the happiest nation on Earth.
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RUSTHOVEN: Coats is GOP voice of sanityRestricted Content

October 26, 2013
Peter J. Rusthoven / Special to IBJ
In 1957, then-Sen. John Kennedy published “Profiles in Courage,” chronicling stories of senators who (in Kennedy’s rendition) risked careers to do the right thing in the face of political pressure. Eleanor Roosevelt, who thought JFK more a show horse than a work horse, remarked that Kennedy himself needed “less profile and more courage.”
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EDITORIAL: Eli Lilly’s cuts are necessary evilRestricted Content

October 19, 2013
If Eli Lilly and Co. sneezes, Indianapolis catches a cold. The statement has been so oft-repeated that it’s become a cliché.
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KENNEDY: ‘Makers’ take their shareRestricted Content

October 19, 2013
Sheila Suess Kennedy
The “makers and takers” narrative—promoted most prominently by Paul Ryan and eagerly adopted by Tea Party activists—is just the most recent manifestation of a persistent American fable that encourages people who believe they “stand on their own two feet” to aim moral indignation and opprobrium at those they believe are “sucking at the public you-know-what.”
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RUSTHOVEN: This buck stops with ObamaRestricted Content

October 12, 2013
Peter J. Rusthoven / Special to IBJ
It’s possible that when this is published, President Obama and House Speaker Boehner will have worked out an end to the government shutdown and debt ceiling crises. I’m betting no. For now, the president doesn’t want to, because he thinks it’s hurting the GOP.
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KENNEDY: Thank Elbridge for our political extremesRestricted Content

October 5, 2013
Sheila Suess Kennedy
Politicians have been gerrymandering districts since the time of Elbridge Gerry, for whom the tactic was named—and he signed the Declaration of Independence.
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RUSTHOVEN: FitzGibbon was friend and hero departed too soon

September 28, 2013
Peter J. Rusthoven / Special to IBJ
Our state and city lost an extraordinary citizen last week, when my friend and partner Dan FitzGibbon passed at age 71.
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KENNEDY: We need to learn to fight fairRestricted Content

September 21, 2013
Sheila Suess Kennedy
In Florence, Italy, in one of that city’s many museums, there is a famous marble statue of Hercules and Diomedes wrestling. One of them—presumably Hercules—has his hands around the testicles of the other, and ever since we first saw it, my husband has referred to it as the “fight fair, dammit” statue.
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  1. Why not take some time to do some research before traveling to that Indiana town or city, and find the ones that are no smoking either inside, or have a patio? People like yourself are just being selfish, and unnecessarily trying to take away all indoor venues that smokers can enjoy themselves at. Last time I checked, it is still a free country, and businesses do respond to market pressure and will ban smoking, if there's enough demand by customers for it(i.e. Linebacker Lounge in South Bend, and Rack and Helen's in New Haven, IN, outside of Fort Wayne). Indiana law already unnecessarily forced restaurants with a bar area to be no smoking, so why not support those restaurants that were forced to ban smoking against their will? Also, I'm always surprised at the number of bars that chose to ban smoking on their own, in non-ban parts of Indiana I'll sometimes travel into. Whiting, IN(just southeast of Chicago) has at least a few bars that went no smoking on their own accord, and despite no selfish government ban forcing those bars to make that move against their will! I'd much rather have a balance of both smoking and non-smoking bars, rather than a complete bar smoking ban that'll only force more bars to close their doors. And besides IMO, there are much worser things to worry about, than cigarette smoke inside a bar. If you feel a bar is too smoky, then simply walk out and take your business to a different bar!

  2. As other states are realizing the harm in jailing offenders of marijuana...Indiana steps backwards into the script of Reefer Madness. Well...you guys voted for your Gov...up to you to vote him out. Signed, Citizen of Florida...the next state to have medical marijuana.

  3. It's empowering for this niche community to know that they have an advocate on their side in case things go awry. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Lrst9VXVKfE

  4. Apparently the settlement over Angie's List "bundling" charges hasn't stopped the practice! My membership is up for renewal, and I'm on my third email trying to get a "basic" membership rather than the "bundled" version they're trying to charge me for. Frustrating!!

  5. Well....as a vendor to both of these builders I guess I have the right to comment. Davis closed his doors with integrity.He paid me every penny he owed me. Estridge,STILL owes me thousands and thousands of dollars. The last few years of my life have been spent working 2 jobs, paying off the suppliers I used to work on Estridge jobs and just struggling to survive. Shame on you Paul...and shame on you IBJ! Maybe you should have contacted the hundreds of vendors that Paul stiffed. I'm sure your "rises from the ashes" spin on reporting would have contained true stories of real people who have struggled to find work and pay of their debts (something that Paul didn't even attempt to do).

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