"The Official Portrait of Miss InDiana"

"The Official Portrait of Miss InDiana"
aka "Miss Victory"

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Quick Hits For April 30, 2009

Just a couple of quick thoughts:

It's my understanding that as of this week, every dollar the Federal Government spends for the rest of the year will be borrowed.

Congress passed a $3.5 trillion budget yesterday.

Total local, state and federal government spending nationwide is now in the neighborhood of $5.5 trillion out of our (supposedly) $14 trillion Gross Domestic Product. What this means is that government spending is now equal to about 65% of the private sector. Somehow it seems we'd better off with our number one industry being making things and selling them not maintaining government bureaucracies.

Joe Biden continues to be the mouth that doesn't know when to shut up.

Funny of the day courtesy of California resident Rick Moore's Facebook Status, "Arlen Specter leaves GOP (for Democrats), raises average IQ of both."

Have a great Thursday!

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

My favorite charity: Bright Star School



Ms. Hinkle was my middle school gym teacher in Kokomo. Her sister was my high school french teacher. They were both among my very favorites.

In 2002, God called Ms. Hinkle to start the Bright Star School in Nairobi Kenya. The humble beginnings of this school was a building framed with sticks on a dirt floor with lean-to type metal walls and were a far cry from the classroom you see in the picture here.

Seven years later there are several proper buildings. The compound has running water, electricity, bathrooms, dormitories, nutritious meals, and most importantly an education which is most coveted among the children of Nairobi's slums.

Aside from the fact that my former teacher founded and runs the project from Kokomo Indiana, it is my favorite charity because 100% of the donated funds go directly to the school and the children. There is zero cost in administrative fees. And recently they became a not-for-profit so your gift is tax deductible.

Our government should be run so efficiently.

Anyway, I mention Bright Star School on the blog today because Ms. Hinkle is taking a group in May to look after the school. I know they could use extra donations for all kinds of incidentals. They also plan to give medical check ups to all the children and will be buying medical supplies.

If you feel called, please give. These children don't waste the opportunity given to them and Ms. Hinkle doesn't waste a dime of the money we send. Again if you feel called, here's the donation link to paypal and remember it is tax deductible.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Indianapolis City Councilor Ed Coleman Speaks To California Libertarian Party

The first account of Indianapolis City County Councilor Ed Coleman's talk to the California Libertarian Party is very briefly summarized at The Independent Political Report:

Keynote speaker Ed Coleman is an Indianapolis city councilman who recently switched to the LP, making him the elected Libertarian with the most constituents in the country. He recounted the inappropriate pressures that local Republican party officials put on him. He said that his unwillingness to sell favors hasn’t necessarily hurt his fundraising, and has even brought him promises of future campaign contributions. Coleman said he sees the purpose of government as just to protect people from aggression and to ensure access to water, electricity, and streets. He said he wanted the government out of his church, his bedroom, and his wallet.

Further down in the summary of their first day's activities was another little jewel that is of the type to serve as a warning or reminder to elected officials anywhere who desire economic growth and prosperity in their country, state, city or town:

Treasurer Cowles ... announced that they would not be running for re-election, as Cowles is moving to Nevada to escape California’s taxes

As I've repeated a few times recently, "Taxes may redistribute wealth [or economic activity] in the short run but they redistribute people [and industry] in the long."

Friday, April 24, 2009

Build It And They Will Come, Eh?

(Crawfordsville, IN)- One of the current 'stimulus' spending targets is high-speed passenger rail service, and as a railfan, it caught my attention that one corridor singled out for attention is Cincinnati to Chicago, through Indianapolis. From an Indy Star report:

The administration identified the corridor linking Chicago, Indianapolis and Cincinnati as one of 10 where the president wants to see efficient train service zipping along at 79 mph to 150 mph.

Dennis Hodges of the Indiana High Speed Rail Association said passenger routes from Indianapolis to Cincinnati and Chicago now run at about 45 mph; upgraded tracks and trains would raise that speed to 110 mph.
Crawfordsville in on that current route. Amtrak currently serves this run, so I thought it might be meaningful to look at its' current standing. From Amtrak's website:

One can currently commute from Crawfordsville on Amtrak's Cardinal #51 train. It departs Crawfordsville at 7:28am, and arrives in Chicago at 10:35am, all times local. The cost is $19 for a regular coach seat. Coming home, Hoosier State #850 departs Chicago at 5:45pm and returns to Crawfordsville at 10:35pm. The return trip is another $19.

Pretty workable, if you have a late starting work day. It's a long day, but what else would you expect, commuting from 150 or so miles away? These are the only trains that pass through all day, in either direction, so do make sure to be on time!

How many people ride? Hard to say definitively, but here's the evidence I could collect in the late morning:
Amtrak's current station is the thing that looks like a bus shelter, standing here in front of the old Monon RR station, that is now the home to a massage therapist and other businesses. There is no staff here: No ticket agent, no porter. There isn't even a rest room.
Amtrak's dedicated portion of this parking lot in Crawfordsville has 12 spaces. 5 are occupied by commuters. One is my car.

Who knows? Maybe there is a lot of walk-up ridership. Maybe each vehicle had seven people carpooling. Maybe, though, people choose not to ride.

The National Association of Railroad Passengers has statistics on Amtrak's various routes. According to NARP, 31,099 fares rode the Hoosier State in 2008. See pg 37 of NARP's factsheet. For comparison? According to the most recent (2002) INDOT count, the least travelled part of I-65 north of Indianapolis saw 26,330 vehicles PER DAY.

I know how it goes with these programs: If they had a lot of riders, it would stand as proof of the public's support and therefore the worthiness of public funding. As it shows few riders, it's proof that if only the service were upgraded- made to run faster, in this case- surely more people would ride. No matter what, though, shovel more money at it.

There is no comparing Europe's high-speed rail to American passenger service. I've ridden Spain's AVE train from Madrid to Sevilla, and it's a hoot. It runs at about 180mph. Total trip time is about 2 hours. What makes it different is that the rails are dedicated solely to the AVE train. No slow passenger trains to clog the rails with, and no freight trains.

In the US, and on the former Monon at Crawfordsville, the rails are owned by the freight companies, here, by CSX. Passenger service is second fiddle. The railroads had been trying to rid themselves of passenger service from the 1950s until finally in 1971 Amtrak was formed. Until then, the federal government forbade American railroads from eliminating passenger service, forcing those companies to operate these trains at a loss for years or even decades.

The Administration's plan is to upgrade the rails on existing routes. Well, that's nice. I'm sure the freight railroad will appreciate that gift. But it doesn't change the fact that the freight trains still take priority over passenger trains. Do this math for me: A passenger train capable of 200mph is going to go how fast if trailing a freight train going 35mph?

So, what are we going to do? Kick the freight trains off their own tracks? Build new dedicated corridors? Anybody think that land acquisition through Chicago will be easy or cheap?

Notice, I haven't even begun to talk about the operational subsidies that allow Amtrak to survive. A quick look at Amtrak's balance sheet shows that passenger fares barely cover salaries and benefits to Amtrak employees, and don't even cover bothersome things like train operation (you know, the core of the enterprise), or fuel.

In 2007, Amtrak lost more than a billion dollars. Who ate that? We did. Those of us who don't even ride.
(Originally posted on Kole Hard Facts)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Found on Indianapolis Craigs List

Reply to: sale-mbjgr-1132984729@craigslist.org
Date: 2009-04-21, 12:27PM EDT

Original Link
We the People of Indiana would like to trade or get rid of our Indiana politicians, especially the career politicians, and replace them with grassroots people such as SMALL Business Owners, farmers, truck drivers, Home-makers, Waitresses, Mothers, Fathers, just about any regular Joe out there who cares about preserving the rights of the People and will protect the Constitution for how it's written.

Will pay extra for those willing to do away with the Federal Reserve, BATFE, DHS, and repeal the spending bills currently in place.

Must be a Natural Born Citizen of Indiana, never been a CEO of a large company, no violent felons or pedophiles, and must not be considered an Upper Class citizen.

Duties will include, but not limited to, following the wishes of their constituents, upholding the Constitution of the United States of America and of the State of Indiana, Standing up for the people they represent when bad laws are introduced, being fiscally responsible with money that doesn't belong to them, upholding their oath of office, and making sure that America remains safe from evil without taking away the rights of our citizens.

Military Experience a Plus but not required. Gun ownership and NRA/GOA/SAP is another plus.

Party Affiliation is of no concern as long as they stand for what America stands for.

"Interpretation" of the law or Constitution is STRICTLY PROHIBITIED! Please submit your resume to the People of Indiana. Addresses can be found via the internet or the phone books.

Hat tip: Sean Sheperd

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Introducing Mike Kole

Many thanks to Melyssa for her invitation to me to contribute to Hoosiers For Fair Taxation while she takes a breather.

HFFT is one of the blogs I have long linked to on my own blog, Kole Hard Facts of Life, because I value the perspective that so long as we have to have taxation as a necessary evil, for the funding of government (another necessary evil), it should at least be fair, and above all, taxation should be prioritized such that the proper functions of government are funded first, and everything else last and least, or in a better world, not at all.

Not a single day goes by that I see a news account of government funding something that, in a better world, would be funded exclusively by private funds. Today's example come from an Indy Star report:

Hundreds of Hoosiers braved patchy rain and cool winds swirling around Monument Circle at noon Monday to rally in support of the arts.

Known as "Indy Culture Matters," the rally was organized by the Indianapolis Consortium of Arts Administrators to raise the public profile of cultural institutions and their value, particularly amid the economic crisis.

John Pickett, executive director of the Indianapolis Opera and vice president of the consortium, acknowledged last week that in addition to simply raising awareness, the rally stemmed from frustration at the level of financial support given to the arts in Indianapolis.

This year, for instance, the Arts Council of Indianapolis received $1,870,000 from the city budget and the Capital Improvement Board in public funding for the arts -- a decrease of $673,500 from 2008.

Pickett is frustrated? Nearly $1.9 million received for something that is nothing like a proper function of government? And, at a time of economic downturn? I believe the phrase you're looking for is 'Thank You".

The more I learn about the Capital Improvement Board, the more I have come to believe it should be eliminated entirely. What about art is a 'capital improvement'? I think the time has come not merely for the CIB to explain itself on selected spending misadventures, but to justify and explain its' very existence.

Art is a wonderful thing. It's also a personal thing, a personal expression of the individual artists, whether painters, sculptors, stage performers or musicians. It is absolutely wrong to take the money from the community as a whole to fund the personal expressions of select artists of political favor. You see, a great deal of art is supported very fabulously commercially. But the various arts that line up at the public trough tend to be the favorites of yesteryear, lacking the ability to attract enough willing support, i.e.: customers, so they turn to political favor instead, where they need not be popular to support themselves, just popular enough to sway a weak-kneed politican or two.

Mr. Pickett, you have raised my awareness. Now I wish you less public money for 2010 than 2009, and in a better world, none. Please consider approaching those who claim to value the various arts, and ask them for their personal expression of support, in the form of a donation, leaving the pockets of those who don't unpicked.

Monday, April 20, 2009

CITY VOLUNTEERISM: Join April 24th Great Indy Clean UP!

HFFT encourages volunteerism and self-reliance. One way to help keep taxes low, is to take ownership of your neighborhoods. Notices are going out now in neighborhoods. I received my notice from MKNA over the weekend. I hope you will take a few hours on Saturday and help do a little spring cleaning in your neck of Indianapolis.
--Melyssa for HFFT


INDIANAPOLIS - On Saturday, April 25, 2009, Mayor Greg Ballard will be the
first among thousands of volunteers from 70 different neighborhood
organizations to flood the streets of Indianapolis in an effort to give
Indianapolis a spring cleaning. Volunteers will pick up litter, clean
alleys, and plant trees during the kickoff of the "Great Indy Cleanup,"
a litter abatement program which runs annually from April through October.

"The Great Indy Cleanup is a great opportunity for everyone to do their part
to make our community cleaner and safer," said Mayor Greg Ballard.
"I encourage all residents to not only get involved today, but to commit to
keeping our neighborhoods clean throughout the summer and all year round."

The "Great Indy Cleanup," a program of Keep Indianapolis Beautiful, Inc.
(KIB) in partnership with the City of Indianapolis, South Side Landfill,
Covanta Energy and Republic Services, aims to relieve streets, walkways and
alleys of the obtrusive eyesores left behind by litter and illegal dumping.
Neighborhoods receive help from DPW crews with trash trucks and dumpsters.
KIB coordinates the event and provides gloves, garbage bags, banners and
donated Coca-Cola products to help make the cleanup a success. Disposal of
the trash is generously donated by South Side Landfill and Covanta Energy.

Last year, volunteers removed more than 2 million pounds of litter through
277 neighborhood cleanups as a part of this program. The "Great Indy
Cleanup" is part of the "Great American Cleanup," the nation's largest
community improvement program, sponsored by Keep America Beautiful, Inc.

The kickoff ceremony will be held at 8:00 a.m. at Charles A. Tindley School,
3960 Meadows Dr. and will include a call to action from Mayor Ballard for
all residents to pick up litter throughout the month of April. Mayor
Ballard's "Pledge to Pitch In" program encourages all residents to do their
part throughout the month of April by cleaning up yards, streets and alleys
to help keep their communities free of litter and debris. Residents can
register to "Pledge to Pitch In" by calling 317.327.5300 or visiting


8 a.m.
Opening Ceremony Speakers: Greg Ballard, Mayor of Indianapolis; Olgen
Williams, Deputy Mayor of Indianapolis; David Forsell, President of Keep
Indianapolis Beautiful, Inc.; Marcus Robinson, Principal and CEO of Charles
A. Tindley Accelerated School and Dr. Charlie Schlegel, School Director of
Challenge Foundation Academy. Great Indy Butt Out high school winners
announced. Top two high schools that picked up the most cigarette butts in
the month of April will be acknowledged by Mayor Ballard.

8:45 a.m.
Volunteers and residents start cleaning the city. Mayor Ballard and staff
will be joining neighbors and volunteers to clean up litter throughout

1 p.m.
Mayor Ballard will join Warren Pride for the Wrap-up Celebration at Creston
Middle School, 10975 East Prospect.

"Every Litter Bit Helps"
Beginning April 6th, residents have been able to register for the Every
Litter Bit Helps campaign. Sign up at any YMCA of Greater Indianapolis, any
Marion County Public Library, or any Marion County Papa John's Restaurant.
Volunteers will receive a trash bag and gloves, and can place their
collected litter out for their standard weekly trash pickup.

The Great Indy Cleanup program kicks off on Saturday, April 25 and runs
through October. Neighborhoods can organize their own litter cleanups and
receive resources through KIB. KIB provides gloves and trash bags as long
as supplies last. Limited dumpsters are available. To sign-up, visit
www.kibi.org or contact Tammy Stevens at tstevens@kibi.org or 264-7555, x116
for information.

While KIB encourages private beautification projects around the home and
personal property, the resources allocated to this neighborhood development
initiative are reserved for cleaning public spaces only-not for
personal/household use.

For more information about other beautification programs and resources that
can help your neighborhood, visit www.kibi.org.

My Formal Introduction

As of today, I City-County Councilman Ed Coleman am taking over as editor of the HFFT blog for a few months while Melyssa completes an important project. I have been given full authorization to give HFFT a new feel while I am the editor.

The first change will be that I will not be blogging daily. With the acceptance of two new writers you will be hearing from Sean Shepard and Mike Kole. The two of them will be bringing to you the issue of the day to keep you well informed on the issues that matter most to fellow Hoosiers. Hopefully you will enjoy their fresh views and comment regularly.

I personally plan to post once or twice a week. I will be posting on the big issues that pertain specifically to Indianapolis. I plan to keep you all informed on the goings on in the city council and provide my own take on each issue. I hope to get great feedback as I will be using your opinions and advice to help in my decision making process to help make Indy the great city that it can be.

For those of you that will miss Melyssa's somewhat interesting reporting from time to time, don't fret. Melyssa will pop in from time to time to give us great input as well. Don't think that I am trying to change this blog. This is the blog that Melyssa created and will stay that way.

Hopefully you will all enjoy the temporary change and continue your loyal readership.

Is Barnes & Thornburg Cashing in on Simon Pacers Bailout?

With the recent claim from the Pacers that they did not ask for the $15 million bailout from the Capital Improvement Board, it makes us ponder why the CIB put forward a dire request for $15 million, while allowing the Simons (team owners) to be vilified.

One possible reason is that CIB President Bob Grand, also managing partner of Barnes & Thornburg law firm who represents the Pacers, wants a cut from the bailout of your money. Assuming Grand's firm got 30%, that's a cool $5 million.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

"The Spangle" calls out CIB billionaire bailout at Tea Party

We need to fix the problems in our local cities and counties across Indiana, before we should take on the federal government. We can get face to face with local leaders, conversely we don't have access to Washington.

Realistically if we are not good parents of local government, how can we change anything in Washington? Tea parties need to make the focus local, not national. Only then will be see progress.

Chris Spangle (former producer of Abdul in The Morning Show) gets it.

Indiana Sovereignty update

Indiana's Senate Resolved State Sovereignty on April 9th, 2009 at 2:27 pm. This resolution stands on it's own. No need for the House to vote (they had their chance and blew it), no need for the Governor to sign it. Read the resolution please.

We have begun our fight for our tenth amendment with Senator Greg Walker leading the way along with 19 co-sponsors. Sen. Walker won't be out promoting himself but I know he is out spreading the word and we need to be backing him up and promoting this act of our Senate.

Many have said this is not binding - I disagree. Indiana Senate has not only brought it to the Senate floor, they voted 44-3 for it and we have it on record. Are we not to take them at their word?? I for one intend to take them at their word and intend to hold them to their word.

Please help by going to http://www.incrc.com - read the details of who voted and how, thank those who stated sovereignty and continue the accountability process with many Hoosiers across the state. The time is ripe for moving forward in the fight for true freedom and education.

Update submitted by Joyce Morrell

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Indianapolis City Councilors have a great opportunity before them

Lemonade requires lemons.

Anyone who was at Wednesday's council meeting which invited the public, business owners, the CIB and the Colts and Pacers, could easily tell just how terrified the city council is right now by the fact that truck loads of lemons were dumped at their feet. Our city potentially is going to hemorrhage a sour mess.

No one will take the blame and no viable solutions are apparent yet.

I was impressed by how many councilors that did not have to attend that meeting made the effort to be there. That tells me that they genuinely want to solve this problem. Keep in mind, our city councilors don't get huge salaries and most of them are just regular people who also have other jobs.

We all know by now where the fault lies. If you don't, may I suggest reading the vast archives of Advance Indiana? It is there that you can learn the history of the reckless, greedy deals made by self-serving politicians from both parties with their billionaire campaign contributors. It is not hard to figure out.

We cannot change the cards we were dealt. However, we can be thankful the place we are, for it is an opportunity for city councilors to earn political clout by steering us out this mess.

Our councilors have help available unlike ever before. At Wednesday's meeting we heard from small business organizations representing breweries, wineries, restaurants, hotels, car rental agencies, and well informed members of the public. Each offered assistance by calculating the realistic outcomes of the tax and spend solutions offered by the same political leadership that created the crisis. Some offered possible parts of the answer.

We also have at least two activist attorneys, Gary Welsh and Paul Ogden, who have shown they will lend their expertise to the massive problem facing us.

The only question is which councilors will rise up and work on behalf of the people by putting our interests ahead of party? I hope each councilor sees the opportunity to make lemonade from this massive crop of lemons dropped at their door step.

We are all in the same boat. These are the moments that present opportunity for true leaders to emerge. I have no doubt that lemonade will be made.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Councilor Ed Coleman first public official to suggest resignation of CIB president, Bob Grand

By Stan Lehr, WIBC

It's not just the bloggers pushing it now. A member of the City County Council is suggesting resignation to the head of the embattled Capital Improvement Board. It had gone unsaid in polite company until Libertarian Ed Coleman brought it up at a meeting of a Council Committee.

The bloggers have repeatedly attacked CIB President Bob Grand, who is also managing partner of the Indianapolis office of the law firm Barnes and Thornburgh. The firm represents the Indiana Pacers, one of the key players in the CIB budget crisis.

Coleman told Grand he was stating a suggestion as much as a question when he asked, "Have you recognized there is a possible conflict of interest and considered resigning so we can get someone on this board who represents the citizens and not the Simons?"

That's a reference to the Simon brothers, owners of the Pacers. Grand says he has acknowleged his position and has sometimes abstained from votes to avoid any conflict. And to the suggestion that he step aside, he said, "I strongly disagree." He referred to "aspersions" cast on blogs that "not many people read." That brought jeers from some in the meeting room. Grand was there, at least.

The Pacers and the Colts declined the committee's invitation to attend the meeting.

Councilor Ed Coleman, the only city councilor with the stones to suggest Grand resign, has also agreed to become temporary editor of the HFFT blog, while I pursue a personal project. To my knowledge, Councilor Coleman will also be the first public official in Indianapolis to be a political blogger.

Attorney blogger Paul Ogden and CIB's Pat Early on Indiana Lawmakers tonight

Paul Ogden and Pat Early will discuss the CIB's inability to pay its bills for the city's stadiums.

Paul Ogden, who publishes Ogden On Politics , is an outspoken critic of the both the CIB and the Mayor's lack of leadership and transparency at a time when the city most needs it.

If you want to get up to speed on the CIB billionaire bailout issue, from the perspective of the taxpayer, read both Ogden On Politics and Advance Indiana. The lawyers behind the blogs are dedicated to keeping you informed and keeping pressure on the politicians that are wrangling to force the taxpayer to fund their billionaire campaign contributors whose millionaire employees play ball in Conseco and Lucas Oil Stadium.

The show will air three times this weekend on local PBS Channel 20's WFYI
Friday at 9:30 pm
Sundays at 1 pm
Sundays at 6:30pm on WFYI+ (plus)

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Had Enough Indy? A brand spankin' new blog !

HadEnoughIndy.com is doing a great job of covering the nuts and bolts of the CIB crisis. You should add it to your daily read. I like it there.

Also, a pretty funny wise guy named Unigov bought the domain LukeKenley.com and is building a hilarious site reminiscent of the old BartPeterson.com site, which disappeared shortly after Peterson lost the election due to grass roots activism.

Unigov got on our radar when he (or she?) made the infamous You Tube, "Indianapolis Is Broke" which describes the terrible state that Indy's politicians have made of our taxpayers' capital investments.

Keep in mind that a politician cannot possibly be the sharpest knife in the drawer when he does not have the brains to buy his own name.com

Courageous Words at Tonight's CIB City Council Meeting: Gary Welsh and Councilman Ed Coleman

Last night's meeting was one of the top two dramatic episodes of city government I have ever witnessed at Indianapolis City Hall.

The two most principled dramatic performers were Councilman-At-Large, Ed Coleman and attorney blogger extraordinaire, Gary Welsh who publishes Advance Indiana.

As usual, Advance Indiana offers an enlightening detailed summary of the meeting, so I don't have to do the heavy lifting.

And while Advance Indiana carried the nuts and bolts of the reporting load, Paul Ogden offers additional insight to the meeting and gives kudos once more to our GOP defector turned Libertarian, Ed Coleman.

And here's a surprise for the readers of HFFT...City Councilman Ed Coleman agreed this week to take over as temporary publisher of the HFFT blog for me while I work on a major personal project. I am so honored to have a representative with real passion for service to The People to cover the real inside of city politics for our readers. He will round out the reporting with a few guest writers and sometimes I'll pop in if the pot needs a little stirring or some extra herbs and spices.

We'll make the blog transition soon.

--Melyssa for HFFT

FOX NEWS Highlights the Tea Parties they produced

Yep, fair and balanced. They not only report the news, they now create the news!

New Website Launched To Highlight Astroturfing Behind So-called “Tax Day Tea Parties” brought to you by Fox News and Conservative Millionaires

Washington, DC— A new website was launched today to highlight the truth behind the so-called “Tax Day Tea Parties.” The new site, $aveTheRich[ www.savetherich.com ], will document efforts by Fox News Network, prominent Republican Officials and conservative millionaires who are attempting to create the false impression of a grassroots movement through a political tactic known as “astroturfing.”

Astroturfing is a coordinated public relations campaign, usually spearheaded by large organizations and consultants. The goal of an astroturf campaign is to disguise the efforts of the political or commercial entity by orchestrating public activity through outreach, marketing and disinformation. These actions are often heavily funded by corporate or political entities that rely on computer databases, phone-banking and hired organizers.

And so far, the tell-tale signs of astroturfing are everywhere in the so-called “Tax Day Tea Party” events:

Large lobbying organizations and their consultants are quietly organizing behind the scenes. The principle organizers of the local events are actually lobbyist-run think tanks Americans for Prosperity, Freedom Works and American Solutions for Winning the Futures (ASWF) an organization run by former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich. http://thinkprogress.org/2009/04/09/lobbyists-planning-teaparties/

Fox News is listed as a sponsor of the events and has aggressively promoted the so-called “Tax Day Tea Parties” and encouraged viewers to get involved. According to reports, Fox News provided attendance and organizing information for future protests, such as protest dates, locations and website URLs. Fox News websites have also posted information and publicity material for protests. Fox News hosts have repeatedly encouraged viewers to join them at several April 15 protests that they are attending and covering. Tea-party organizers have used the planned attendance of the Fox News hosts to promote their protests. http://mediamatters.org/items/200904080025?f=h_top

At the events which have been held in advance of April 15th , protesters appear to be confused about why they are protesting. Despite claims from Fox News and other organizers that the protests are against high taxes and wasteful government spending, many of the participants are calling for the impeachment of President Obama and raising questions about his place of birth. Other protesters appear to be from myriad far-right causes such as gun rights, secessionists, immigration and neo-Nazi groups

Elected officials are driving turn out and, as in the case of Sen. David Vitter even sponsoring a bill to honor the protests. At least 12 Republican members of Congress, and a handful of Governors, will be featured prominently at the so-called “Tax Day Tea Parties.” In one particular instance, Congressman Randy Neugebauer (R-Texas) is actually seen on video holding a conference call instructing Tea Party participants on talking points and messaging. http://thinkprogress.org/2009/04/08/gopestablishment-joins-teaparties/

$aveTheRich is dedicated to documenting efforts by Fox News Network, their media personalities and a handful of conservative millionaires to deceive the press and the American public with these so-called "Tax Day Tea Parties."

Rules for posting comments

All are welcome to write anything you wish here on this board without fear of censorship. If your speech is hate filled and you attack or flame people anonymously, your comments will be deleted.

So in other words, you can flame and attack all you want in this forum. Just let us know exactly who you are first.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Gov. Perry Backs Resolution Affirming Texas Sovereignty Under 10th Amendment - Part 2


Indianapolis Tea Party Organizer (Laura Behney) bans activist's free speech

Cross posted at IndianaTeaParty.com

I am writing to spread sunshine on something disturbing that was done to me today by the organizer of the Indianapolis Tea Party. If you are going to the Tea Party in Indianapolis, this concerns you. Many of you may think I should shove this incident away in a closet, but I cannot for sunshine is the best disinfectant.

Today, I was banned by Laura Behney who heads the Defenders of Liberty. She is the organizer the Indianapolis Tea Party to take place tomorrow. Laura, who self-proclaims to be a defender of freedom and liberty, silenced my freedom of speech right in her own back yard yet wants to hold the government accountable to protect your liberties. Sadly, she failed to protect my 1st Amendment freedom. And she has the right to do so, because the group she runs is technically private. That doesn't make it right. And it certainly is not principled in freedom.

Here is background on what took place.

I've been delighted, yet also concerned deep down about why there is so much mainstream media coverage focused on the national tea parties. Mainstream media (MSM) is corporate controlled and that's why I'm concerned. It is corporatism that bankrupted America. (Yes, we ARE bankrupt.)

When I first got wind of the tea party in Indianapolis, I was very excited to help. It was all coming together at the time we were planning the Revolt At The State House event focused on local and state issues in Indiana.

It is my belief from all my experience, that it is too late to save our federal government. We have no control there to enact change there. We won't win against that machine. The rest of the world has power to enact change through pressure on America and the people who control our government.

However, we DO still have power to change our local government and our local election results. We CAN realistically make Indiana government accountable, obey the Constitution, and do what it should.

Yet most people at the tea party tomorrow won't be able to tell you the name of their city councilperson, let alone their state legislator or state senator. Don't believe me? Conduct your own poll. Many won't even be able to tell you where the city county building is located just four blocks away, because they have never been there or know what takes place there.

On the email list of the John Birch Society, today I published an opinion stating my belief that the MSM and Republican Party are herding well meaning Americans to these Tea Parties in order to distract them from the real place where they have true power to change their government. That place is local and state government.

I stated that the elites controlling our federal government are literally laughing at the peasants in the streets who they are bilking for trillions of our future wealth. These elites are also very relieved that so few people are paying attention to their state and local government. That part is most delightful to them. Their worst nightmare is 50 states with clean accountable governments controlled by The People standing up to the Federal Government.

These elites fear our citizens taking lawful control over our local cities and states.

I suggested that the MSM is leading well-meaning sheep (novice activists waking up) straight into the slaughter by distracting them from the only part of government they can control...that part which is in their own back yards.

For this opinion, I was banned.

The tea parties are not grass roots. It is a national movement within the Republican Party to herd people into the party so their players can have control once more. This is the same party that had their butts handed to them in November after letting George Bush and for a while a Republican controlled House run amok for 8 years. Now they all of a sudden found God? I don't think so.

Meanwhile, there are many very good people inside the Republican party trying to change it from the inside. They are the Republican Liberty activists.

True grass roots has a bottom up management style. The tea parties are top down management and the proof is right in front of your eyes. It's seen in the national conference calls to coordinate the events, it is seen in the reluctance of the organizers to use the grass roots activists already plentiful and successful in Indiana, and in their amazing power to generate MSM out of no where and literally overnight.

Grassroots doesn't get that kind of action accomplished overnight.

Desperate to rally the same kind of grass roots support that Obama enjoys, Republicans (many well meaning freedom fighters) upped the freedom movement with their friends at FoxNews and social networking. The Behney's volunteered to head up the "grass roots" in Indianapolis. And they honestly believe that this is all grass roots. And they are working very hard and I'll never take that from them. They are giving 150%.

A few weeks ago, I gave over the keys to the IndianaTeaParty.com site to the Behney's when the national tea party web got hacked. I also published their email and directed a few thousand people their way. (This blog got more than 400 unique readers today alone.) I wanted to help. I don't think it is a bad thing that so many people are getting together to demand freedom.

I also believe that there are good well-meaning people that are waking up to what is happening in America and are finally ready to learn and do something. I also know most will go back to American Idol next week, and rely on their emails (harvested from this activism) to tell them how to vote so they don't have to do the hard work of watching over government for themselves. And you can bet the people at the top of this movement are counting on that.

If we are to lead our government to a better place, we need to be staunch practitioners of the very principles we espouse ourselves. And that starts with protecting our 1st Amendment freedom to free speech and free press.

Monday, April 13, 2009

A danish scientist Niels Harrit, on nano-thermite in the WTC dust ( english subtitles )

Here it is. Explosives ARE confirmed in the dust of the WTC rubble. You still think people who don't believe the official WTC story are whackos?


You are a whacko if you believe your government!

CITY COUNCIL MEETING: The Public, Colts & Pacers invited

I just learned that there is a meeting at the City County Building (across from City Market) at 6pm on Thursday in Room 260 to discuss the Mayor's proposal.

Ultimately after the state gives its blessing for the tax hikes Mayor Ballard proposed today, the city council has to approve it. It sounds like Bob Cockrum is doing the lifting for the mayor. He was on WIBC today falsely stating that CIB is cutting $8 million from its budget. He also soft pedaled the nearly $40 million tax increase by stating there would be no property tax or income tax increases.


The TRUTH is that the CIB had a $20 million dollar budget INCREASE this year. Of that $20 million newly minted increase, they talk about a $8 million cut.

If the Mayor read blogs, and especially the comments left on blogs, he would know how the public feels about his proposal.

The public is voicing sentiment everywhere, including in the Indy Star comments, that the public wants the sports teams to foot the bill.

Indiana Barrister: First to publish Ballard's plan to avert the CIB crisis

Kudos to Abdul to being first to blog Ballard's plan to avert the CIB crisis on Indiana Barrister! He beat the Indy Star and other bloggers as far as I can tell. WIBC might have put it on the air earlier though. I know they were on it.

As of 4:45 pm, Gary Welsh (as usual) already has a detailed analysis published at Advance Indiana which essentially says Ballard's plan is to tax and spend his way out of the problem, while reminding us that the CIB's alleged $8 million tax cut is really a tax INCREASE of $12 million this year. You see, the CIB increased it's budget $20 million. (that's the part they always conveniently leave out).

Ballard's plan doesn't nearly go after the Colts and Pacers hard enough. Ballard calls for the teams to each contribute $5 million. The rest of the money will come from a temporary increase in Marion county alcohol tax, car rental tax, hotel/motel tax, and increase in ticket sales and the sports taxing district.

Ogden has already called out that "temporary" tax increase usually means permanent, although Abdul pointed out that Ballard has already given back the unused portion of Peterson's COIT increase we did not use.

So does that mean we’ll give the Pacers $10 million instead of the $15 million Simon wanted and call it a $5 million contribution from the Pacers? My guess is yes and if our mayor gives those billionaires a dime, I'm going to do everything I can to see to it he is not re-elected.

In the meantime, if the tax increase does go through, I'm renting my cars and buying alcohol in Johnson or Hamilton county.


by Devvy Kidd

Do you know what the herding technique is? Do you know what 'controlled opposition' means?
These tea parties are the manifestation of millions of Americans who finally got the big jolt last September when they screamed at Congress: No bail outs! They also watched their hard earned money in 401(k)'s bleed half to dearth. It didn't matter. That body of crooks, cowards and criminals have their agenda and they no longer fear the ballot box. Why? Because the mobs continue to demand the fruits of your labor are stolen via heavy, progressive taxation to give to them - right along with massive vote fraud. The U.S. Constitution is nothing but a prop out in the District of Criminals. It's business as usual while we the people continue to see everything we've worked for go down the rat hole courtesy of the same Congress who didn't get the job done in the previous session.

read the entire column

Ballard finally to propose plan for CIB catastrophe

Mayor Ballard waited until the last moment possible to present his plan. It will be revealed at 2pm today. WIBC 93.1 FM is covering it.

Here's attorney activist Paul Ogden's advice to the Mayor on solving the CIB crisis.

The question is will we hear from the marine mayor or the puppet?

Saturday, April 11, 2009


Shorebreak asked us to publish this video!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Letter I sent to Mayor Ballard's Press Secretary about CIB crisis

You think Mayor Ballard has the stones to call for bankruptcy of the CIB? Do you think Mayor Ballard has become a sociopath like most of the other politicians? Do you think the public will have their way? Most do seem to be favoring bankruptcy. --Melyssa

Here's the letter:

April 9, 2009

The only way out of the CIB mess for Mayor Ballard is to lead the charge for the CIB to file bankruptcy. That's the only honest answer to this mess...a mess he didn't create, but needs to end.

More taxation and secrecy regarding the Colts, Pacers and CIB's books is just going to cause more public outrage and no one is going to forget it before the election.

Ballard would get re-elected if he called for bankruptcy. Then we could begin to look at every detail and every contract for renegotiation. That's what an honest leader would do.


Indiana Sovereignty Defense SR 42 sails through Senate !

From Jerry Titus (Kokomo, IN HFFT friend)

A very heartfelt Thank You To all who helped in support of SR 42 - Defense of State Sovereignty. A small victory... but a significant one.

The resolution passed in the Senate by a vote of 44-3.


Thursday, April 9, 2009

Indy Intuitive Intelligence - Local course work

click to enlarge

I will sponsor one half of the tuition for any patriot who wants to attend the classes with me. In return I ask for 40 hours of volunteer leadership activity at the conclusion of the sessions on intuition and intelligence.

P.s. General George Washington was a Pisces.

email: hoosiers.for.fair.taxation@gmail.com if you want to attend with me

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Indy Star sports writer Bob Kravitz calls for CIB audit!

Bob Kravitz writes:

Before we even think about another tax to make up that reported $47 million shortfall, an independent auditor must be brought in to look at the books. I want that person to tell the public what happened to the money. Why is the CIB in this current hole? Who is responsible?

Meanwhile sports fans and taxpayers left these gems as comments. Comments that folks like Bob Grand (president of the CIB & Pacers attorney) and State Senator Luke Kenley (who accepts every campaign contribution he can from Irsay & Simon), completely ignoring the taxpayers in favor of their rich insider clients and contributors.

"Don't come to me for another tax increase to support the pro sports teams in Indy. I am about ready to tell them to get lost. The only people that make any money from pro sports is the downtown merchants; hotels, restaurants, and such. The average tax payer sees nothing--they only pay out.
Hospitality--be darned. No one travels to Indy to see a pro sports game unless it is a playoff or semi-final or final game. As you travel, if you tell anyone you are from Indianapolis, they will say " Oh yeah, that is the home of the Indy 500". They will say nothing about pro sports complexes. By the way, the Indy 500 is self supporting, and they have put all their money back into the business and continue to expand and improve--a lot more than we can say for the pro sports complexes downtown."

"They did this on purpose. They concealed the costs until it was built so we would have no choice."

"If they had divulged the actual expense to operate LOS the public would have remonstrated and the building would not have been built without an alternative means to fund it. There is absolutely no way the CIB and those supporting the building of these buildings didn't know what the costs would be to operate them or at least, a pretty good idea.

We have already paid 'our share'. No more! It is time for those who think these structures are such a great deal for the city to step up and take responsibility for operating them. The taxpayers have done their part."

"This is outrageous to treat the tax payers as if we are some sort of bottomless piggy bank both locally and nationally. We no longer go downtown to eat or spend other money nor do we rarely eat out locally and not because of the economy. As much as I enjoy sports I can not get behind the apparent short sighted planning. I'll bet it was in the plan to go to the taxpayers as needed. I'm all for shared responsibility but we are practically footing the bill while owners and players are making millions. Maybe our market is not large enough for these teams. It's time for another tea party."

From the desk of The Joker: I admit to agreeing with this article. Why should the "average citizen" be required to pay for a team they do not support. The whole arguement about state or regional benefit is absolutely crazy - you don't hear or read about the "Indiana Colts" or the "Indiana Pacers. So explain to me again how this helps Fishers, Noblesville, Fort Wayne, or Goshen? As to asking the teams to kick-in $5 million is ridiculous. Tell them to wipe out the debt each year from their TV dollars and the remainder goes to the teams. Now that is a proposal even The Joker can live with...LOL The Joker"

"Nice column, Bob. Would it be wrong to ask the Pacer and Colt *players* to help out here? I see pay cuts coming (at least) where I work, know people who've been forced to take 'em or forced to take furloughs such as at the Star. And I know lots of people who've lost their jobs. So why aren't the players helping here (yes, they pay a small tax to the bumbling fools at CIB, but it's next to nothing)? Conseco/LOS are both taxpayer funded, and without them, the players couldn't make their millions. If both team's (remember that word, team?) players paid $5 million, total per team, even if for a short term only, that $10 million would help keep the door's open AND show they cared about the community (as our food pantries are overflowing with the hungry). You're right, there's nothing in their (nor the Simon's/Irsay's) contracts that say they *should* do this. It's just that maybe if they really is such a thing as a "team" player, now is the time for everyone to show it."

"tony george for mayor."

"What especially galls me about this whole situation is the fact that NO ONE at CIB has lost their jobs. Who is responsible? I'm sure we can find a rail to ride them out of town on."

"While I won't arsue the points in the column, the sad fact is that the discussion about sports teams and our local economy are focused in the wrong direction.

We should be discussing and holding those accountable who told us that our "investment" in these sports palaces and the convention center were going to bring in huge amounts of tourism dollars to prop up our tax base and tax revenue to make these "investments" viable. Not only should the local boards be held accountable, we need to hold the consultants who wire hired to "study" these "investments" and advised us that these investments would pan out.

I went thorugh this argument with our local tourism officials when they had studies done and presented the citizens with data that said all this spending provided us with tremendous econmic returns. Sadly, close study of their data revealed that much of the return was due to spending already in place, visits by friends & family members from out of town."

"You are so true Mr Kravitz, I am tired of bailing people out My rear is tired of it. i work everyday to keep afloat. The Obama 'tude to spread the wealth is really starting to stink. Time to put my cash in a box - sell all my stuff and live in a low taxable dump."

"Yea Bob!"

It really IS simple Bob. Let the mega billionaire owners WRITE THE CHECK!! They are using the Pacers as a bargaining chip. 15 million to the Simons, is like 15 bucks to the taxpayers. I suggest if the Simons want to make money with the Pacers........WIN!!!"

"This country has a disease and the citizen are catching it by listening to the politicians. The Republicans have some blame, but it is by-in-large Democrat thinking. Spend tax money from your pocket and the return on the investment will pay off in a large benefit. Spending $1 million dollars of your tax money and it will bring back $1.5 millions in jobs and benefits is sending us to a huge deficit. Obama has his leeming believing it. The CIB touted the spending on the stadiums and I do not think each dollar is bringing back a dollar."

"i f the people could see the wages that union workers make at the convention center for doing nothing= actually hiding until there is a job to be done. because they dont like 50 workers loitering around they put them in a room and pay everyone they're wage..on a sunday it could 30 to 40 dollars an hour. the job could be done by ten or fifteen people for a day. gotta love the good ole boy network. look what it's doing to gm and chrysler"

"Couldn't have said it better myself. Do you know Sen. Kenley? Maybe you could have your people contact his people and have lunch, say sometime before the end of the current General Assembly, and make him an offer he can't refuse, to back off the collective tax increase proposal, before he gets a horse head in his bed?"

"Kravitz has hit on several key points here but let's focus on just one, convention traffic and downtown businesses. Chicago is pricing themselves right out of the Convention market, in large part due to all the taxes placed on lodging and food. Las Vegas and Orlando are right behind, it is just becoming too expensive for a company to send people to those locations. Indy is very attractive and could become a major player in convention hosting. This will NEVER happen, however, if the city & state keep placing tax upon tax on those who visit and mingle in Indy. I agree 100% withItalic Kravitz, bring someone in to do an audit, get others (like IMS people) involved in the managment of the CIB. Something needs to happen. You can't shove 10 lbs of crap in a 5 lb bag and expect to get anywhere. This is precisely what the CIB has done, and it's why they've got it all over their shoes!!!"

"Politicians and their appointees need to check their egos at the door, and exercise some fiscal responsibility. If pro sport teams insist on receiing public money via sweet arena deals, they need to open their books. These teams want to have it both ways: get the public money, leverage their "worth" to the city, and not come clean on their books. The city shouldn't allow it."

"Tax payers should not be responsible for building stadiums or funding the light bill. AIG, Fannie, Freddie, Detriot and others should not be bailed out by our children and grand children either. Responsibility resides with individuals, not the public treasury."

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Ogden's proposal for the CIB: CHAPTER 11 BANKRUPTCY

Below is attorney Paul Ogden's solution for the CIB bailout mess. Mayor Ballard and his staff knew about the short fall of the CIB's budget long before Ballard took office. During the campaign, Ballard read Indy Undercover (no longer on line), Advance Indiana, Indiana Barrister, and HFFT. Granted, we didn't think the budget shortfall was as big as it turned out to be (we thought it was only $10 million), but everyone knew the operating budget was not accounted for in the Colts sweetheart deal brokered by Mayor Bart Peterson's team led by Fred Glass. It's not right that the Pacers beg for $15 million from taxpayers simply because the Colts got a lopsided deal from the city.


Given the chilly reception the Indiana House leaders are giving to the CIB Bailout plan concocted by Senator Luke Kenley, it is becoming increasingly clear that CIB's lobbyists may not get the revenue it needs to continue as a viable entity. Certainly bailing out the CIB by making Indianapolis the city with the highest hospitality taxes in the country is not a good idea. Last time I checked, Indiana has cold, snowy Winters and isn't blessed by being on an ocean. Having the highest hospitality taxes in the country will deal a major blow to the convention/tourism business.

There is a way out of the current mess. It is called Chapter 11 bankruptcy. Chapter 11 would give the bankruptcy court the power to rewrite CIB's contracts. One of those contracts that should be rewritten is the Colts-Lucas Oil Stadium sweetheart deal. Also, bankruptcy would allow the court to rework the debt load of the CIB. One thing that has been lost in this debate over the CIB's annual operating deficit is that the CIB also enormous debt problems and if that debt can't be reworked voluntarily, bankruptcy would have had to happen anyway.

In conjunction with the bankruptcy, the State and City should insist on changes to the CIB. Bob Grand needs to go along with the entire current board, most of which have major conflicts of interest that should have precluded their appointment in the first place. There should be a major rethinking of who should be on the Board and who should appoint those individuals. Clearly there need to be more citizen-type people on the board. Right now the Board is little more than a rubber stamp for the deals the leaders of the CIB cut in the backroom with their patrons. Finally, the State and/or the City needs to demand an end to CIB's insistence that it be allowed to operate like a secret organization. It's unfathomable that a public entity like the CIB could operate in the red for 10 years without even disclosing that fact to the public. That is unacceptable.

Friday, April 3, 2009

"The man who ran against the establishment in 2007 is now a card-carrying member of it,"

Matt Tully summarizes where Mayor Greg Ballard, who was supposed to be "The People's Mayor", stands today.

In his column, Tully asks who will speak for the people. Today Matt Tully spoke for us.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

INDIANA LIBERTARIANS: CIB (Colts Pacers) bailout is bad policy

Indianapolis, IN - Indiana Senator Luke Kenley (R) and Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard (R) presented the State's plan to bailout the Indianapolis Capital Improvement Board (CIB) today. Instead of asking the users of CIB properties in Indianapolis to step up and pay their fair share first, lawmakers will be considering a statewide increase of alcohol taxes, ticket taxes, food and beverage taxes, and the Innkeepers tax.

Timothy Maguire, chairman of the Libertarian Party of Marion County, criticized the move to attach this bailout to the state budget. "There is no excuse to force those who don't directly use the stadiums to pay for the short-sightedness of the CIB first."

"The appropriate step should be a direct tax on the immediate users of the CIB facilities," said Maguire. "These Republican-sponsored increases will give us the highest hospitality taxes in the nation, which will only serve to drive off the convention business the City leadership claims to protect. Hurting a $3 Billion industry with unwise taxes will only put more Hoosiers out of work."

"It was an increase in taxes that outraged the voters of 2007 that swept the Republicans into office," commented Ed Coleman,

Indianapolis City-County Councilor At-Large. "It is a shame that the Mayor and other City Leadership, after only a year and a half, have forgotten the will of the voters. If the Statehouse and the Mayor look to raise taxes on the hard working owners of hotels, bars, restaurants and our City's guests first, then they truly do not understand the forgotten man in all of this."

Coleman is asking everyone to contact their state legislators immediately, to voice their opposition to high taxes. "The voters of Indianapolis need to remind their officials of their outrage from 2007, and that they won't forget a move like this come election time. Ask them to put the average taxpayer first, and the owners of the Colts and Pacers second."


For more information, or to arrange an interview, please contact Sean Shepard at 317.513.2406 or by email at sshepard94@gmail.com

About Libertarian Party
The Libertarian Party is the third largest political party in the United States, and is the only non-major party with ballot access in the state of Indiana. Libertarians believe in being SERVED by a small non-intrusive government that is financially responsible, administratively competent and socially tolerant.

For more information on the Libertarian Party of Indiana visit: www.lpin.org
For more information on the Libertarian Party of Marion County visit: www.indylp.org

Pete The Planner to Interview Jim Shella on WXNT @ 8am Friday

Wanna talk to Jim Shella of Channel 8 in the morning?

Well, Abdul is out of town tomorrow and Pete The Planner (financial guru) is filling in. Pete is cool! The word is that Shella is confirmed to be Pete's guest at the 8am hour on WXNT AM 1430.

Please tune in. I'm planning to call!


Subpoenas served to Indiana Educational Service Centers and school corporations

According to inside sources, several Educational Service Centers and Indiana school corporations have been served with subpoenas to provide documents to a Grand Jury conducting an investigation in South Bend. The investigation is reportedly being conducted by the Department of Justice, Antitrust Division, in Chicago.

ESC and school officials have been advised to seek legal counsel and have been told that this type of investigation is "serious and could lead to unforseen consequences if not handled with the appropriate care."

Let's just hope they get around to asking a few questions about the AEPA/Tremco/WEC no-bid scheme.
What can you do to help? PASS SB 520 NOW!!!!

Hat tip: Diana Vice!

Senator Kenley LOCKS OUT THE PUBLIC from CIB bailout talks.

Ogden has the story. He and all other members of the public were locked out of the meeting today, which discusses the future of OUR money!

Public Locked out of Senate Appropriation Committee Meeting on CIB Bailout
I went over to try to testify at the Senate Appropriations Committee meeting on the Capital Improvement Board bailout. I found that instead of using the Senate Chambers which was open, the hearing was placed in a small room which wouldn't hold more than 25 spectators. (That is one of the oldest legislative strategy that is used to shut out the public. ) The room and the hallways were choked with people.They placed a TV outside for the overflow crowd. But the volume was so low, you couldn't hear it unless you were right next to the TV. I finally gave up hope of testifying, or even hearing the committee meeting, and went back to my office to watch it on the web stream.Funny thing...although Luke Kenley's briefing on the CIB bailout was embargoed until midnight (which I'm sure was aimed at avoiding any mention of the deal on the evening news broadcasts - the TV stations broke the embargo anyway and reported it.), the Colts and Pacers hospitality workers were apparently tipped off on the deal well in advance so they could stack the crowd. Hundreds of hospitality workers arrived at the legislature in their work uniforms to send the clear message to the legislators that they needed to raise taxes or it would cost them their jobs. The pro-tax increase/CIB bailout crowd also got plenty of notice and have filled the speaker schedule for the committee hearing. Those speakers advocating the tax increase/CIB bailout include representatives of the Colts, the Pacers, the Chamber of Commerce, and Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard, other mayors throughout the state who will see more revenue from the increase in state-wide alcohol taxes, Don Welsh and Bob Grand, both of the CIB. I have been listening for some time and have yet to hear a single speaker against the proposal.The general public only got the notice from the blogs picking up on some of the rumors, and the evening news broadcasts. The only other notice was the Indianapolis Star's story this morning. That only left a few hours to assemble the forces opposed to this deal. The other side though, again tipped off by the deal, has a long parade of witnesses before the committee to speak in favor of the CIB bailout. These pro-tax/pro-CIB bailout speakers include representatives of the Colts, the Pacers, the Chamber of Commerce, and Indianapolis Mayor Greg Ballard and other mayors throughout the state who will see more revenue from the increase in state-wide alcohol taxes.Senator Luke Kenley, Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, though bragged to the Indianapolis Star about how he reached out to the public:
"We have tried to do our homework before we invited the public in," he said. "I think it's better than a fair and equal shot, because, instead of coming in when you don't have a solution on the table, here is a cohesive proposal."Yeah, right.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Indiana Sovereignty passed in committee! Urgent action needed!

News from Jerry Titus on Defense of STate Sovereignty


I just spoke with Senator Walker. SR 42 was heard in hearing in the Committee on Commerce and Public Policy & Interstate Cooperation this afternoon.

Senator Walker reports the hearing was "...the most fun I've had in the 2 1/2 years I've had this job."

Needless to say, SR 42 passed in committee.

The vote was 8 to 0, with 3 absent. All four Democrats present voted AYE! As well, three asked to be added as coauthors no less!! Those Senators being Senators Deig, Skinner and Arnold.

Senator Walker reports that he is up to 19 co-authors now, including three Committee Chairs - Senators Paul, Steele and Kruse, and Senate President pro-tem Long.

There should be video of the hearing posted tomorrow, I'll try to get it on Youtube as soon as I see it.

Action Alert - Phase 2
A vote on the floor could come as early as next Monday (4/9/2009). Senator Walker wants to get it to a vote as soon as possible, so time is short.

Call and/or write your State Senator and express your support for the resolution and encourage them to do so as well. If your Senator was been involved in the committee hearing or is a co-sponsor, please be sure to thank them (profusely).

I have a Soapbox alert set up at Congress.org to aid in finding your Senator and authoring a message. The Alert is titled "Support SR 42" and is from Kokomo In.


I also have an Action Alert up at http://incrc.com:


Please share this with your friends, family and neighbors, and encourage them to write or call their Senators!

Thanks for your time and efforts!!


KUDOS: Congressman Carson to Host Foreclosure Town Hall

INDIANAPOLIS - Congressman André Carson (IN 7th District) will host a local town hall meeting in mid-April focused on the housing foreclosure crisis and the actions of both the president and Congress to help struggling homeowners.

Tuesday, April 14, 6:30 p.m.

George Washington Community School, 2215 West Washington St. Indianapolis, IN

The public town hall will offer an opportunity for residents to discuss the foreclosure issue with Congressman Carson. The event also will feature a number of local experts from the housing and finance sectors who can help residents better understand options available under the President's new Making Home Affordable plan.

"The foreclosure crisis is devastating families and neighborhoods in Indianapolis and across our country," said Congressman Carson. "Through the actions of President Obama and Congress, there's a plan in motion right now to help struggling homeowners. It's now our responsibility to provide information to residents about how to access these resources, inquire about eligibility for mortgage restructuring, and avoid becoming victims of a growing number of scam attempts."

BART LIES: We were wrong AND we're being wronged


From Bart Lies blog...remember that person?

We were wrong AND we're being wronged

It's impossible to make sense out of Mayor Ballard's decision to speak to the closed-door committee regarding the CIB having gone bust thanks to their incompetence when it came to negotiating the deal for Lucas Oil Stadium and the current whining and begging from Simon and Simon, the quickly-going-broke owners of the Pacers.

Mayor Ballard is NOT the small-government, taxpayer's friend that he pretended to be while he campaigned. In fact, it seems as if his appearance from out of nowhere may have been a sly and calculated put-up job by the now-president of the CIB, Mr. Bob Grand. What else could it be? He and the mayor go back a number of years as acquaintences, reportedly thanks their children being schooled together.

Was the campaign just a scheme hatched during a series of parent's night meetings at school?

We wonder.

At every turn, the so-call development of downtown Indianapolis has placed additional burden onto the backs of taxpayers. They are apparently going to do it yet again.

The 'fix' for the CIB's nearly $50 million debt is (as always) to pile more taxes onto those of us who unfortunately decided to call Central Indiana 'home.' On April 2, 2009, the evidence points to another round of taxation being meted out by the General Assembly. All done fron behind closed doors.

The projects that the CIB has undertaken are uniformly hailed as economic development and we are handed a neverending stream of hollow speeches from out-of-touch (and typically very wealthy) spokespeople. They make unsubstantiated claims of enormous quantities of money coming into the region thanks to their particular pet project. The numbers are always 'estimates' from whatever study they have at hand.

Never do they provide any documentation of their data that could be reviewed or *gasp* audited by an outside agency.

No, we are handed the vague promise of great things to come. Jobs, tax dollars, visitor spending, and so on. Somehow, though, we always come up short. The vaporous tax dollars go somewhere, but they don't seem to cover the debt racked up by the CIB's follies. And we taxpayers always end up having to take it on the chin.

And the cycle repeats: Build, tax, build, tax. Meanwhile, the things that are meaningful to the general citizen on a daily basis - the roads, sidewalks, parks, schools, dining out, public transportation - all get neglected through bare-minimum funding.

The people running this city and state are completely uncaring and self-serving. Their cronies and (in many cases their employers) are benefitting tremendously while the taxpayers for whom they also work and by whom they were granted the privilege of holding office are shafted.

And Mayor Ballard has turned a deaf ear and blind eye to the taxpayers he pledged to stand with and for.

It's just astonishing and incomprehensible. Well, those are the nice words we'll publish to describe it all. You can surely figure out what we'd actually like to say.

Oh Hell, we'll say it anyway: YOU SONS OF BITCHES!

"CRIME PAYS": Mark Small book signing Thursday 5pm to 8pm

Mark Small, one of the attorney's who spoke at the state house revolt, is having a book signing on Thursday evening. He wanted me to extend an invitation to everyone who reads our blog.

"Crime Pays" is a satirical piece of fiction loosely based on the lives of the Cook brothers from 1960's era Indiana who bilked Kokomo residents out of some $28 million over the years they ran their scam.

The event is at the Front Page Tavern which for years is where newspaper men from the Indianapolis Star gather to drink. A small part of the book is set inside the Front Page Tavern.

Here's a short review I wrote :
"Ponzi schemes set in pre-depression 1920's and the 1960's, quickly pulls the reader into the moral void of the Thompson brothers who scam a Midwest town into investing millions in their trusts. Both sociopaths, one brother claws his way to the top of the hick town country club set, while the quiet one indulges an obsession for breeding rats to eat, fight, and kill inside an elaborate Chicago sewer replica he secretly installs in his master bedroom. The reader is given moral reprieve in the wise and loving Mama Jackson and the prostitute Sylvia who wield a class and compassion that far surpasses the self-absorbed bankers, lawyers, and judges who frequent their all night establishment. It all unwinds when the rats are fully unleashed on society and the brothers' schemes fall apart. It's anybody's guess who will ultimately pay for the Thompson brothers' crimes in the riveting 'Crime Pays'."

What: Crime Pays Book Signing with author Mark Small
When: Thursday, April 2nd 5pm to 8pm
Where: Front Page Tavern, 310 Massachusetts Avenue
Phone: 317-631-6682