18 February 2005

Statehouse Shenanigans and Some Other Stuff

It appears as if the legislature is frozen from the budget to work on cell phone bans and Indianapolis Works. First, the cell phone ban. Rep. Vanessa Summers (D-Indianapolis) wants to ban using a cell phone without a hands free device if you're driving unless it's an emergency. It didn't get out of committee *sigh*. Does an officer know what constitutes an emergency to me?? I doubt it.

Next, about Indianapolis Works. Mayor Peterson's proposal to further merge under Unigov. It would combine the fire departments between IFD and the townships, the Sheriff's Department and IPD, eliminate township government, etc. It's shrinking government, which I like. Granted, I'm not a Bart Peterson admirer, but the plan received high marks from Beurt SerVaas, the former Republican president of the City-County Council. Right now, I'm thinking it's a ploy to have the Republican legislature make Mayor Peterson, a Democrat, look bad two years out from the mayoral elections in 2007.

I'm posting this to show you what the General Assembly is doing right now as well: IGNORING THE BUDGET!!

On a side note, I've been getting involved in a poker tournament at Barley Island in Noblesville every Thursday. LPIN Secretary of State Candidate (and Hamilton County Chair) Mike Kole is there as well. It's a good time, good beer, and the best part is...it's free! No buy-in!

15 February 2005

Stupid Solutions for a Simple Problem

Ladies and gentlemen, Mayor Bart Peterson looks like a fool, the House Republicans are trying to make him look like a bigger fool, and will try to take the citizens of this state as fools as well. All of this fooling around is due to the failure to secure funding for a new stadium to house the Indianapolis Colts. Late last year, Mayor Peterson and Colts owner Jim Irsay announced they had a deal to keep the Colts in town for 30 years. Money for this would come from a downtown casino, which has to go through the legislature. Looks like Peterson forgot to talk with the General Assembly about it.

New House Speaker Brian Bosma said that there would be no new downtown casino on his watch, because of the moral reprecussions, more or less. That led two prominent Republican lawmakers Reps. Mike Murphy of Indianapolis, and Luke Messer, to offer alternatives. They looked to expand the gaming at the state's two horse tracks in Anderson and Shelbyville. Those proposals failed to get out of committee or generate any support.

Upon the failures to get any type of gaming going, now it looks like Murphy wants to penalize those that commute to Indianapolis for work. People like myself, would be facing double taxation and taxation without representation. The money would be removed from my paycheck, like my county taxes (double taxation), and then be used in Marion County, where I don't live (taxation without representation).

Irsay should be taking a page from his neighbors to the north, the Green Bay Packers. In 1997, they sold shares of non-voting stock for $200 apiece in an effort to raise funds for renovations to Lambeau Field. The team raised $80 million in a month. Imagine the possibilities, Irsay sells say, 1 million shares, similar price, BAM!! $200 million for a new stadium's construction! No tax increases, no gambling, no welfare for a multimillionaire, all privately financed! Scary proposition, the free market working!! It's not fair for the gun to be put to taxpayers' heads to finance a private entity. That's a simple libertarian solution that won't affect the lives of people that don't want to pay for a new stadium. For more ideas like this, click some of the links on the right.

10 February 2005

Social and Fiscal Responsibility

President Bush said in his State of the Union that the government must spend more wisely, showing fiscal restraint...HOGWASH!!! All the president is doing is spending slightly more than last year, and putting the money into white elephants, mostly the war in Iraq. Instead of focusing on protecting our citizens with police grants (money to help local departments hire more officers), he's investing in discretionary (ie: defense) spending. All in all, it's $2.5 trillion for the year, and that doesn't even include the $80 billion he has asked for the Iraq war.

Now don't get me wrong, democracy in Iraq is a wonderful thing. On March 15, 2003, I blared "Bombs Over Baghdad" (a killer OutKast song, BTW), but the toll is enough. Over a quarter of a trillion dollars has been spent there, when he could have better used it inside our borders. Bush's legacy is foreign policy, no doubt about it. What worries me though, is how can he "help" other countries when there is so much to do here??

The war on terror is just like the war on drugs to me. Lots of money spent, lots of rhetoric, but little, if any, concrete results. President Bush should focus more on crony capitalism, protecting the lives of Americans, and not be a man that focuses on imperialism. Under Bush's watch, the USA Patriot Act stripped citizens of the civil liberties. Now he's for a Constitutional amendment on same-sex marriages. What's next, he's gonna tell me when I get married, I'm only allowed one child, and it must be male??? This does reek of authoritarianism, and it disgusts me. The only good things he's done (in my eyes) was the tax cuts (but without the necessary spending cuts), trying to reform the tax code, and privatize a portion of Social Security.

Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld talked of the "shock and awe" strategy in Iraq. Send a shock and awe to the government by standing up for personal freedom and fiscal responsibility in the voting booth. You ask "how?" I say: VOTE LIBERTARIAN!

03 February 2005

State of the Union

My friends, last night President Bush told Congress the State of the Union. He is pushing for reform on the tax code and Social Security. Both are long overdue. The tax code is hard to understand to Joe Schmo (ie: me) and goes on worse than a Democratic filibuster. But I digress.

Social Security is in need of a major overhaul now, or we're all screwed. The figures do not lie. In 2018, SS will pay out more than it takes in, and according to figures, will be completely bankrupt in 2042. I'll be 61 then (God-willing), but still it's an out-dated system in need of a modern makeover.

Democrats say all is well with SS, that the "trust fund" will be there for Americans. The "trust fund" is nothing more than a shoebox under someone's desk that has a load of IOU's in there. President Bush is using the political capital he won to push for the reform of SS. Democratic Congressional Leaders Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi, say that they will block the reforms. Reid and Pelosi, both as long on rhetoric as W, have no legit solutions.

People need to realize that it's their money being legally taken from them. We want our money back!!!