After reading letters from diehard Republicans, I must say I’m just glad we have independent voters — voters who can think for themselves.
Republican leadership wants to eliminate Medicare. I’m sure their are Republicans on Medicare who will vote to do just that.
Republicans want to privatize Social Security (which means giving it to Wall Street to play with until they figure out a way to steal it). Diehard Republicans on Social Security will vote to do just that.
The GOP is trying to eliminate labor unions, or at least make them impotent. Wisconsin is just the start. I know union members (who will be making peanuts without the union) who will vote to do just that.
Other diehards think that whatever a Republican president does is right and just the opposite for a Democrat.
A case in point is Michael Sherrill’s letter of May 16 in which he praised Bush for invading Iraq, calling it the right choice because it drew al-Qaida into Iraq which led to the killing of bin Laden. How he made that stretch is not the point. The point is, if a Democratic president had ordered the invasion, and everything else happened exactly the same, would he still believe it was the right thing to do?
After being brutally honest with himself and he decides yes, then he is an independent thinker. If not, he is a Republican apologist.
The GOP has gotten off the track of what they used to stand for.
At their convention their theme was “We Built It” which is based on a lie. A speech taken out of context is a lie.
A more appropriate theme would have been, “I’ve got mine, I don’t care about anybody else.”
— Bruce Sheets
at public broadcasting
Dear Gov. Romney:
Since you mentioned PBS, Big Bird and Jim Lehrer so prominently in the first Presidential Debate, my colleagues and I have compiled some information on federal funding for public broadcasting.
Most federal dollars for public media don’t go to PBS or Sesame Street or The PBS NewsHour, they go to local stations like the one I manage — WTIU in Bloomington — and our sister radio station, WFIU. Nationwide, stations like ours hire thousands of people, buy local goods and services, and contribute millions of dollars to our local economies.
A survey by the bipartisan research firms of Hart Research and American Viewpoint in 2011 found that over two-thirds (69 percent) of American voters across the political spectrum oppose proposals to eliminate government funding of public broadcasting. This week, a Washington Times/Zogby Poll confirmed that.
A Harris Interactive poll found that Americans consider PBS the most-trusted public institution and the second-most-valuable use of public funds — behind only national defense — for the ninth straight year. But our annual appropriation is equal to what the Pentagon spends every six hours.
Numerous studies — including one requested by Congress earlier this year — have stated categorically that while the federal investment in public broadcasting is relatively modest, the absence of this seed money would cripple the system and bring its services to an end.
How modest? Including all our content — television, radio, mobile apps, podcasts and online — the cost is about $1.35 per person per year. If the federal budget were $1 million, public broadcasting’s share would be about a penny — one-hundredth of one percent.
If everything in the federal budget had been cut by the same percentage that public broadcasting has already been cut the last two years, our budget would now be $500 billion lower.
Despite these cuts, 91 percent of all U.S. television households watch their local PBS station each year. We still provide resources to teachers for free, and 81 percent of all our children between the ages of 2-8 watch us — and learn from us.
WTIU is locally owned and community-focused. We work efficiently to make limited resources produce outstanding results. For every $1 of federal funding invested, we raise an additional $5.
In addition to being good public stewards, we are also good storytellers. Let me end with one of our best, Ken Burns.
Mr. Burns writes in the Washington Post about discussing with President Reagan his iconic series “The Civil War”:
“In the late 1980s, I had the honor of meeting President Ronald Reagan at a White House reception. I told him I was a PBS producer working on a history of the Civil War. His eyes twinkled as he recalled watching, as a young boy, parades of aging Union veterans marching down the main street of Dixon, Ill., on the Fourth of July. Then, in almost an admonishment, he spoke to me about the responsibility he saw for a private sector-governmental partnership when it came to public broadcasting and the arts and humanities. (His administration was very supportive of these long-standing institutions.) I told him that nearly a third of my budget for the Civil War series came from a large American corporation, a third from private foundations, and a third from the National Endowment for the Humanities, an agency then led by Lynne Cheney. He smiled and then held me by the shoulders, and his eyes twinkled again. ‘Good work,’ he said. ‘I look forward to seeing your film.’”
We will continue our good work on behalf of the American public. Thank you for your public service, and good luck with your campaign.
— Phil Meyer
WTIU Station Manager
for the taxpayers
Once again the proposed city budget made front page news in Sunday’s Tribune-Star. Also once again, the taxpayer can expect to take another hit. This time in the form of a fee in trash pickup and tree-branches removal.
This proposed fee comes as no surprise. Making the taxpayers fork out money to cover shortages in the city budget goes way back when the city decided to make the taxpayers pay for fire hydrant rental. Since then the services that were once free were added to the list of services that the taxpayers had to dig a little deeper to pay for.
I wonder if the unemployment rate in Vigo County, or sheriff sales of homes, or the amount of people on food stamps are taken in consideration when city officials tell the taxpayer they have to dig a little deeper so the city can operate. Probably not.
— Fred Roberts
First off, I give praise to all the fine work being done around the area — and around the country, for that matter — on preparing for this upcoming election going on right now and ending Nov. 6 (whether it’s GOTV efforts, protecting the rights of others to vote, etc.). I also urge all people that are registered to vote to do your civic duty and vote for whom you think will do the best possible job, no matter whom you’re to be voting for.
That said, for those people still undecided or possibly getting tired of what the so-called “major parties” are giving you, take heed in the fact that there are other options out there to vote for. In the case of Indiana, according to the secretary of state’s website (sos.in.gov), there are several other options for candidates, with 17 of them for president of which to choose from (that being the Libertarian Party ticket of Gary Johnson/James P. Gray and 16 other eligible “write-in” candidates).
For starters, among one of the many options for president as a “write-in” option is the Green Party candidate Dr. Jill Stein. I have been familiar with her “Green New Deal” and have known about her gubernatorial race with Mitt Romney back in 2002 (including her “victory” in debating him). I think that may be enough for anyone else to vote for her. Among many of her issues that I feel make her very much qualified for the job include:
1. The right to decent affordable housing, including an immediate halt to all foreclosures and evictions;
2. Breaking up all “too big to fail” banks;
3. Taking money out of Wall Street and investing it into Main Street and community banks and credit unions;
4. Revoking corporate personhood via constitutional amendment and eliminating Citizens’ United once and for all;
5. Protecting personal liberty and freedom by repealing those aspects of the Patriot Act and the NDAA that violate our civil liberties; and
6. A single-payer “Medicare-for-all” universal health care system.
If you’re further interested in Dr. Stein’s issues, you may go to her website at www.jillstein.org. If you’re interested in voting for her or assisting in her campaign, please be in touch with me at email@example.com.
— Sarah Dillon
Rupert has much
to offer Indiana
Despite popular belief, this year’s Indiana gubernatorial race truly does feature three choices — there’s career politicians Republican Mike Pence and Democrat John Gregg, or Rupert Boneham, a Libertarian who prides himself on not being a politician.
While he may not be a career politician, Boneham knows the struggles facing Indiana families, knows a thing or two about how to relate to the average Indiana family and, if elected, would fight for every single Hoosier.
Boneham is the only candidate running who understands that government has no right injecting itself into our bedrooms. Boneham is the only candidate running who has routinely spoken about vocational education. He has also been the only candidate to speak about transparency in all state contracts and bids, along with the creation of a state budgetary spending cap.
And, in 2012, Boneham is the only candidate who is in favor of marriage equality and is the only candidate who will fight for every citizen regardless of age, skin color or sexual preference.
For over 20 years, Boneham has helped our state. The time has come to help him. On Nov. 6, I ask that you join me in supporting Rupert Boneham for governor.
— Paul Gable, chairman
Libertarian Party of
Minorities will have
impact on election
How do Republicans expect minorities, including Hispanics, Blacks, and Muslims to vote for them? Republicans in Arkansas are struggling to get past the controversy generated by a state lawmaker who wrote that slavery might have benefited Blacks and a candidate who has advocated expelling Muslims from the United States. The Republican politicians’ comments have been roundly criticized and have created an opportunity for Democrats ahead of the Nov. 6 election. Arkansas has a Democratic governor but has voted Republican in the past three presidential elections.
The infamous “47 percent” Romney remark created a serious controversy nationwide. It reflected the ethos of the Republican Party. Readers might recall that on this page as elsewhere, Muslims have been accused of harboring plans to impose Sharia on America. A group of five Republican House members, led by Congresswoman Michele Bachmann, groundlessly accused two prominent Muslim federal officials of loyalty to Egypt’s Muslim Brotherhood.
In the aftermath of 9/11, anti-Muslim rhetoric simmered on blogs and Fox News channel, and YouTube videos. But not until Barack Obama’s presidency was it allowed to erupt into prominent corners of mainstream politics. Perhaps, because of his family history and the persecution Mormons endured in the previous two centuries, Mitt Romney, to his credit, has shunned notions of American Muslim disloyalty, but Republican political and media figures have tolerated or even advanced these hateful myths.
The truth is that Muslim immigrants are a success story. They have high levels of educational attainment and are serving this country well, as many of them are physicians, surgeons, lawyers, scientists, engineers, educators and, yes, taxi drivers.
The violent few among them are no more a product of Muslim values than the 19th and 20th century anarchists were of Catholic values. Extremism is vanishingly rare among American Muslims, and loyalty to secular state institutions is high.
Cumulatively, minorities will matter a lot in this election. Indiana has about 300,00 Muslims and a significant African-American population. It is unlikely Republicans will get votes from them in any significant way. And the minorities’ votes will matter a whole lot in battleground states. White progressive Americans and minorities working together will decide this election.
— Khwaja A. Hasan
Formerly of Terre Haute
RONN MOTT: Ukraine 2
The situation in the Ukraine should let us know plainly, and openly, the old saying about a leopard never changing its spots is true. Vladimir Putin is a KGB officer, grew up a communist and, from all appearances, still believes like a communist.
EDITORIAL: Meth battle never ends
It’s been more than a decade since local police officials declared methamphetamine as “public enemy No. 1.”
READERS' FORUM: March 13, 2014
• Celebrating the Girl Scouts
• Challenging the politicians
EDITORIAL: Warm thoughts on a cool day (Part III)
• Resolving to praise ISU
• Right down our alley
- READERS' FORUM: March 12, 2014
RONN MOTT: SAWS
A few days ago we talked to John Anderson of the Greencastle Presbyterian Church. He’s the coordinator for a mission of the church that builds ramps and stairs for those who are physically handicapped in Putnam County.
EDITORIAL: Thinking warm thoughts (Part II of III)
• Renewing a local library commitment
LIZ CIANCONE: We’re not only ones ready for springtime
During the most recent of our numerous descents into polar temperatures, I was astounded to see a dozen or more robins up to their ankles in snow. They were fluffed out to about twice their normal size. I suppose that was an effort to provide a bit of feathered insulation against the cold.
READERS' FORUM: March 11, 2014
• Meat-free path to the fountain of youth
• Faulty point?
EDITORIAL: Warm thoughts on cool days (Part I of III)
• Something good’s brewing
• Y we can’t take it for granted
FLASHPOINT: Where Congress falls short, and where it doesn’t
At a public gathering the other day, someone asked me how I’d sum up my views on Congress. It was a good question because it forced me to step back from worrying about the current politics of Capitol Hill and take a longer view.
READERS' FORUM: March 10, 2014
• Our government’s heart and soul
• A plea for more give and take
MARK BENNETT: New public-access point begins quest to create more spots to experience river
Fairness holds no power over the Wabash River.
EDITORIAL: Ads on the sides of school buses? What have we come to?
Ads on the sides of school buses do not constitute a sign of the apocalypse. Western civilization will survive.
Flashpoint: President should stop Medicare Advantage cuts
Virtually all elected officials — Republicans and Democrats — share the goal of increasing access to affordable health insurance and helping families receive the best coverage to meet their specific needs.
Readers’ Forum: March 9, 2014
Mardi Gras great event for Swope
EPA regs will cause energy bills to soar
Please pray for Ukraine innocents
Sinful thinking on road to hell
Liberty — or licentiousness
People will not always agree
Botched chance at leadership
RONN MOTT: Radio now a long lost love
I fell in love with radio when I was 16, just a few short weeks before my 17th birthday. The man who did the deed and hired me was Adlai Ferguson.
EDITORIAL: Noteworthy in the news
Welcome to girls teams, fans
You can say that again
Reader Poll results
EDITORIAL: What do Sony cutbacks mean?
It is easy to understand why shivers run down local people’s spines whenever rumors hit the streets about Sony DADC’s plant on Terre Haute’s east side. With more than 1,400 people currently employed in Sony’s production and distribution facilities, the community has grown somewhat dependent on the economic stability Sony provides.
- Readers’ Forum: March 7, 2014
RONN MOTT: Knicks
The big noise in the NBA is whether Carmelo Anthony will stay with the New York Knicks or go elsewhere.
If my memory serves, and it doesn’t always, Carmelo left the Denver Nuggets, the team that drafted him, to play in the bright lights of the Big Apple. It was loudly proclaimed at the time that Carmelo wanted to play for a championship team. The Knicks’ ownership bought a bunch of players and spent a whole bunch of money to aid Carmelo in helping the Knicks to get to a championship.
EDITORIAL: More ill will against gays
If you’re a feral cat wandering freely through a trailer park in Indiana, the General Assembly has taken action to make your life better.
Readers’ Forum: March 6, 2014
Utilities do need tighter regulation
Great work by TV sports staff
Editorial: A good place for persistence
The topic of Gov. Mike Pence’s effectiveness as the state’s top governmental leader during this year’s General Assembly will be hashed and rehashed after the session closes down in the next couple of weeks. At best, the first-term governor will get mixed marks.
- Readers’ Forum: March 5, 2014
RONN MOTT: Abraham Lincoln and George Washington
I remember when by edict the birthdays of Abraham Lincoln and George Washington were lumped into a single celebration called “Presidents Day.” I thought it was stupid then, and I still do.
LIZ CIANCONE: Antiques show better than any modern programs
I’m not a big fan of television.
Readers’ Forum: March 4, 2014
Lunatic ravings of the far right
Let IRS take the bullying pledge
EDITORIAL: New attention on sex assaults
Youth sexual assault in Indiana is a troubling issue that has not received the attention it deserves.
KELLY HAWES: It’s time to take politics out of redistricting
A bill to form a bipartisan redistricting commission apparently died in the Indiana Senate last week.
- More Opinion Headlines
- RONN MOTT: Ukraine 2