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Monday, April 20, 2015
  • What the hell is wrong with us? We can’t seem to find it in our hearts to disagree respectfully. No sir, no ma’am. One guy is on one side of the fence so that must mean the other guy is on the other. And that must mean it’s time for Katy to bar the proverbial door.

    I guess the idea that each person is entitled to his or her own point of view went away a century or two after the ink dried on those useless and archaic documents that things like a nation and states were founded on.

    Think about that for a second, will you? We are no longer entitled to our own opinions? How else do you explain otherwise reasonable people losing their mind when someone takes a different point of view? County Councilman Tom Utley still has my favorite line in that regard when he said that when it comes to some topics, like zoning, people act like their hair is on fire.

    I digress.

     
  • Sunday was one of those days that remind me why I love this business. It was the 20th annual Indiana Sportswriters and Sportscasters Association Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Our Noblesville Times Executive Sports Editor Mark Morrow was being inducted and was kind enough to allow me to tag along and watch.

    What a day.

    At just a candle or two away from 60, I was still among the youngsters in the room. That was OK with me. I felt like a kid in a candy store. The room was full of who's who in Indiana sports media. Starting with our own Mark, the guys I grew up reading, listening to and admiring were everywhere. Dick Mittman was one of Mark's former co-workers from Indianapolis News and Star days. Another former Star guy, Bob Kravitz, was there. Tom Kubat, one of the best writers from the old Lafayette Journal & Courier spoke. So did Bob Jenkins, the voice of the Indianapolis 500, basketball legend Bobby "Slick" Leonard, IU broadcaster Don Fischer, WFNI program director Greg Rakestraw, legendary Bloomington sports editor Bob Hammel, ESPN's Jason Whitlock and more.

    They spoke. I listened. It was great.

     
  • As voters we’ve all been frustrated by how hard it can be to get accurate information about the candidates we’re voting for. Oftentimes good information is scarce on state races and especially local races. More often, the information we do get is so biased and distorted it’s hard to know what to believe. The best articles are those that provide their sources so that readers can easily verify facts for themselves.

    I recently wrote an article on Todd Barton’s record while in office as mayor. His response a few days later claimed that I distorted the facts on his record, and then went on to accuse me of several positions I’ve never taken on issues. So, at this point the best thing to do is for each of us to provide our list of sources for our facts, so that the voters are given the most accurate information on which to base their votes. Here’s the list of Mr. Barton’s claims and then my source to back up my facts. I hope this helps.

     
  • A Crawfordsville Candidates’ Forum will be held Thursday, April 23 in the auditorium of Crawfordsville High School.  Sponsored by the Crawfordsville / Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce, Indiana Federation of Business of Business & Professional Women and the League of Women Voters of Montgomery County, the forum will offer the public an opportunity in one evening to talk with and hear candidates for  Mayor, City Council and Clerk/Treasurer present opening statements and answer questions.

    The “Meet and Greet” session will begin at 6 p.m. with candidates having tables in the commons area, allowing public to talk individually with all the candidates.




     
  • The joy of spring sports and yard work has resulted in a number of patients coming to see me complaining of sore shoulders and elbows. Many of these folks have been suffering from bursitis. Most people have heard of bursitis, but what is it really?

    Any time a medical term ends in "-itis," it indicates inflammation of the tissue or organ involved. In this case, bursitis is an inflammation of a bursa (pleural bursae or bursas). Bursa is Latin for purse, a very good descriptor of what it looks like - a small sac made of connective tissue.

    A bursa is lined with a synovial membrane that secretes fluid into the inside of the bursa. This turns the bursa in to a little pillow filled with a slippery liquid that helps cushion structures around it. It also allows these structures to glide more easily over each other. Here's a fun activity for the kids; make your own bursa by partially filling a small balloon with water. Then put an object like a book on top of it and roll it around on the table to get an idea of how bursae work.

     
  • For the longest time, I wrestled with the idea of owning an iPad. I had a smart phone, which fit neatly in my pocket, and I had a computer that fit neatly in my basement. I didn't see the point of owning another gadget, especially since I was still unskilled in the two electronic devices I already had. Then came the answer to my prayers: iPad For Seniors, For Dummies. It doesn't exactly roll off the tongue, does it?

    The Dummies series includes more than 260 publications. I own Living Vegan for Dummies and Backyard BBQ for Dummies (I go through phases). Years ago, I wanted to learn how to throw my voice but was disappointed to find there was no Ventriloquism for Dummies available.

    Nancy Muir, the author of this new iPad book, has published more than 100 articles on technology and is a leading software consultant. I assume she is about 11 years old, because no one my age could know that much about computers.

     
  • "One of the greatest mistakes is to judge policies and programs by their intentions rather than their results." - Economist Milton Friedman (recipient of the 1976 Nobel Prize for economics)

    Since 2011 Todd Barton has been claiming that we're not a great community anymore, painting a grim picture that we will lose our industry and lose our jobs, and suggesting that we are dying. He claims that without his plan of centralized economic planning by local government we will slip backward into an abyss and become some sort of backwater community. I disagree with his pessimistic opinion of our community. I think it shows his lack of appreciation in the everyday people of this community to come together and do great things. And I especially disagree with his plan to drastically expand government projects to fix his exaggerated crisis. This community does have several problems to fix, but they're not the ones he's addressing.

    Mr. Barton's economic plan is based on the false assumption that "If You Build It They Will Come," that if we merely make things look pretty that outside businesses will suddenly move into Crawfordsville: Commerce parks, economic development corporations, bike trails, Amtrak, convention centers, downtown beautification projects, all at taxpayer expense of course.

     
  • Recently, legislative leaders announced modifications to clarify Indiana's Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA).

    This legislation would add specific anti-discrimination safeguards that prohibit a provider from refusing to offer or provide services, facilities, use of public accommodations, goods, employment or housing to any member or members of the general public under Indiana's RFRA.

    Indiana is, and always will be, an open and welcoming state, regardless of the recent criticism. In response to possible negative economic impact, legislative leaders met with prominent business and community leaders from across the state to ensure that Indiana continues to shine with a positive reputation and alleviate shared concerns.

    At this week's press conference, business leaders joined the Indiana General Assembly to show their support for clarifying Indiana's RFRA. A few of them include Jim Morris, Vice Chairman of Pacers Sports and Entertainment; Bart Peterson, former Indianapolis Mayor and Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs and Communications for Eli Lilly; and Scott McCorkle, CEO of Salesforce Marketing Cloud.

     
  • Local man has a heart of gold
    Saw this man at the library the other day. He had brought his darling granddaughter to story/craft time. It was cute to see her come bounding over with the biggest smile on her face to show gpa' the dream catcher, peek-a-boo-chick and purse she had just made. He was so gentle, ooohing, aaahing and commenting about her wonderful work. Well, our everyday conversation quickly turned into Claude Johnson graciously allowing me an interview for this week's ATC.

    Growing up in Delphi, Indiana, he wasn't in much during high school as his father passed away when Claude was just 12. He and his two brothers all worked, Claude in a grocery store for five years, being one of the grocer's longest-running employees. Claude worked up to meat cutter. At age 16, he joined the Army National Guard, then the Navy at age 17, going to Great Lakes for training. He had a cousin in Chicago and asked if there might be dates for Claude and his buddy. Cousin came through and the six went downtown Chicago walking around. This date cultivated into a marriage (December 10, 1960) that lasted 54 years. Sadly, he just lost his sweet wife, Linda (Beaumont) at the end of February.

     
  • "Solar Power in Crawfordsville" was the topic presented by Michael Fons at Monday's Lunch with the League. Fons emphasized three key points.

    First, the use of coal and gas to generate electricity harms us and our environment. Man-made pollution continues to degrade our environment. Climate change is a reality and the use of fossil fuels has significantly impacted the environment in a deleterious way.

    Secondly, the cost of solar generated electricity has reached parity with conventional coal and gas generated electricity. Fons provided examples of the competitiveness of solar electricity using actual costs and prices.

    Thirdly, solar panel electricity is an example of local production, local use, local responsibility and local accountability.

    Since 2004, the number of new solar installations has increased dramatically for utilities, non-residential and residential users. At the same time the cost of putting solar panels on typical house has dropped nearly 70 percent since 1998. Comparing the average price per kilowatt hour by states, Indiana is ranked 37th among states. Louisiana is lowest, California is 43rd and Hawaii is most expensive.

     

The Paper of Montgomery County,
a division of Sagamore News Media

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