Civil Discourse Now

Where the far left and far right overlap for fun and enlightenment

All Blog Posts (840)

"Glitch" delays TIFs' metastasization.

   The headline on the front page of IBJ reads: “TIF glitch may imperil projects in Midtown.”  (IBJ, Vol. 36, No. 27, p. 1.)  The article carries over to page 39.

   After a description of projects lined up to use TIF funds, the tone of the article echoed the headline. A $39 million development aimed for the area around College Avenue and Kessler “would bring much-needed density along the corridor that is part of a planned rapid-transit route running from Carmel to Greenwood.”  (Id., p.…

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Added by Mark Small on September 2, 2015 at 6:06am — No Comments

Will the Confederate "Stars and Bars" be banned from booths at YOUR Indiana State Fair?

   A trip to the Indiana State Fair in the early 1960s was a festive event. The place seemed huge to young eyes. There were a lot of pieces of farm and construction equipment. In the livestock barns, the old man would point out the various breeds of cattle, sheep, and goats and explain why each was unique as the kids who were there to show the animals sweated and lounged on bales of straw or fold-out chairs. The really big room with aluminum siding sales pitches was okay. On the midway, some…

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Added by Mark Small on August 1, 2015 at 5:57am — 3 Comments

Steve Rowe: goodbye to a best friend gone way too soon.

   Steve Rowe was a bailiff at Marion Superior Court-Juvenile Division when our paths first crossed in about 1989. We struck up a conversation.  A couple of days later I ran into him and his girlfriend at The (old pre-Harley) Stone Mug. They lived close by in Broad Ripple, only a couple of blocks away from me.

   We cooked out a lot. Together, after much trial and error, we developed the World’s Best rib sauce. I do not know how many times we made babybacks together. I cannot remember…

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Added by Mark Small on July 21, 2015 at 6:12am — No Comments

James Douglas Morrison---R.I.P.

On this date in 1971, James Douglas Morrison, lead singer of The Doors and a poet, died of a heart attack in a Paris bordello. I shall toast Morrison this afternoon, hopefully to the tune either of “Roadhouse Blues” or “Texas Radio & the Big Beat”: “No eternal reward will forgive us now for wasting the dawn.”

Added by Mark Small on July 3, 2015 at 6:31am — No Comments

Indiana does not need to enact "hate crimes": current laws are sufficient.

   In the wake of the mass shooting in the Charleston, South Carolina church Wednesday evening, several commentators have expressed concern that Indiana has no “hate crime” among its statutes. As noted on Wikipedia (my 1996 pocket edition of Black’s Law Dictionary lacks a definition of “hate crime”): “Hate crime laws protect against hate crimes (also known as bias crimes) motivated by enmity or animus against a protected class. Although state laws vary, current statutes permit federal…

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Added by Mark Small on June 20, 2015 at 6:12am — No Comments

If we will not limit access to guns, how about responsible news coverage of mass shootings?

   On Wednesday, another mass shooting took place in the United States.

   Before the gun nuts get revved up, this blog will not address the absurd proliferation (oddly, “prolife” is the first part of the word “proliferation”) of assault weapons, etc., in this country. Instead, I want to address another aspect of the incident.

   An individual identified as a forensic psychiatrist appeared on The Charlie Brooker Show after a school shooting in Winenden, Germany, in March, 2009. In…

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Added by Mark Small on June 19, 2015 at 6:09am — No Comments

Sigmund Freud interviewed about Ogden, Mr. Heck, and their criticism of the Pride Festival.

   For me the hour was late. 9:00 p.m. is when I usually pass into the arms of Morpheus. I get up at 4:40 a.m.

   Someone knocked at my door. I live in a big city and, therefore, with Indy’s cutbacks on safety, I was apprehensive. I saw a short man, oddly dressed in the fashion of the early Twentieth Century. He looked familiar. In one hand he held an umbrella. In the other hand he held an unlit cigar. He rapped again at the door, with the handle (now I saw) of the umbrella. I asked him…

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Added by Mark Small on June 18, 2015 at 6:28am — 1 Comment

"Rockin' in the Free World" is not an anthem for Trump---he should call Ted Nugent for a song.

  On this 43rd anniversary of the Watergate break-in, I thought of politics and irony.

   President Nixon was on his way to a landslide re-election victory in 1972, in part because of such tactics as exemplified by the Watergate fiasco, but also because Nixon had made a lot of what today would be called progressive moves (like creating the EPA) although simultaneously prolonging direct United States military involvement in Vietnam so he could make a grandstand peace deal as the 1972…

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Added by Mark Small on June 17, 2015 at 6:26am — No Comments

Broad Ripple pet owners, beware! Coyotes are amongst us.

   There have been several signs, posted on lamp posts, the past couple of weeks, about missing pets in the Warfleigh neighborhood where I live.  This is an area in Broad Ripple west of College, north of the canal, south of the river, and east of Meridian.

   Last week, on my morning walk, I saw a coyote.  Two days ago, again on my morning walk, I saw a coyote.  Perhaps I saw the same coyote.  Perhaps I saw different coyotes.  Coyotes are carnivores.  Jokes about Acme Corporation and…

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Added by Mark Small on June 5, 2015 at 7:54pm — No Comments

Why lease French-made vehicles from Vision Fleet, when we can buy American-made Teslas?

   The contract Mayor Ballard entered into a contract with Vision Fleet has garnered attention from the media of communications and news coverage that seem most comprehensive in our local political goings-on these days: the local blogosphere.

   As I understand the numbers, the City would pay $35 million for 400 French-manufactured electric vehicles. Photos I have seen of the vehicles purportedly to be provided by the terms of the lease show tiny cars. I was reminded of the original…

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Added by Mark Small on June 4, 2015 at 5:51am — No Comments

Oral argument before an appellate court and the image of a roller coaster: apt metaphor.

   A colleague called me yesterday morning to say The Indiana Law Blog had an item about the picture of a roller coaster having been superimposed on the video of oral argument in Whistle Stop Inn, et al v. City of Indianapolis in which I argued for Appellants/Plaintiffs Monday afternoon.

   First, I was concerned someone might believe I had something to do with the matter. There would be little point to illustrating an oral argument with a graphic the judges could not see. Also, without…

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Added by Mark Small on May 21, 2015 at 6:20am — No Comments

MCL on Broad Ripple Avenue to close on May 17 after decades: one more bit of local flavor gone.

   Broad Ripple—“maybe not tomorrow, but soon, and for the rest of our lives”—will become a “brand.” In the presentation a couple of years ago about the Whole Foods complex planned for the Village—because, as one presenter noted (to a chorus of boos from the audience that consisted of many customers and fans of longtime locally-owned and operated organic food store Good Earth) Broad Ripple lacks an organic food store—one of the “suits” on the stage of the Broad Ripple Methodist Church said…

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Added by Mark Small on May 15, 2015 at 6:15am — 1 Comment

Short cruise in Chicago is highly recommended.

   There are so few times to “get away,” that even a leisurely cruise can serve as a tonic.

   I define a “vacation” as any trip of three days or more in which business plays no part and from which I return more relaxed than when I left.

   I heartily recommend the charter boat company in question. The boat was 70 feet or so long. The fixtures were clean and polished. The members of the crew were polite.

   We left the dock. The Hancock Building rose above us. I engaged in…

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Added by Mark Small on May 13, 2015 at 5:46am — No Comments

I got by with a little help from friends, both old and new.

   There are periods in which person experiences self-doubt. Self-doubt can lead to loss of  “confidence”—“full trust; belief in the trustworthiness or reliability of a person.” The American College Dictionary, 1962 ed. Three people had to help me the last three-quarters of a mile to finish yesterday’s race. They gave me confidence.

   Yesterday I was determined to finish the Mini. My goal in my first Indianapolis 500 Festival Mini-Marathon®), in 1999, was to break three hours for the…

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Added by Mark Small on May 3, 2015 at 6:23am — No Comments

My 17th consecutive Mini after MS---and, to the diagnosis, I once more flip the "bird" and wish everyone a safe Race.

   Today I shall walk my seventeenth consecutive Indianapolis 500 Festival Mini-Marathon®. Two years ago, I blogged here about the reasons I walk the Mini.

   In 1994, I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. By the second day in the hospital, I completely had lost use of my legs. That evening—or maybe it was the next; things were a bit of a blur—a neurologist visited my room to inform me of the diagnosis. He said, “You have MS.” I was goofy on the drugs I had been administered—lawfully…

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Added by Mark Small on May 2, 2015 at 6:07am — No Comments

I think that person consumed a brew of powdered soft drink flavoring laced with potassium cyanide.

    Kool-Aid® got a bad reputation in November, 1978, when Jim Jones (a Hoosier in case readers were unaware of the fact) exhorted (or threatened at gunpoint) his followers in Jonestown to drink from vats a brew of powdered soft drink flavoring agent laced with potassium cyanide. To accuse someone or group of people as having been drinking the Kool-Aid® has come to mean those people blindly follow a view or position despite catastrophic consequences. However, it is easier to accuse someone…

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Added by Mark Small on April 26, 2015 at 7:26am — No Comments

How to evict a groundhog under one's deck?

   Groundhogs were familiar visitors at my parents’s farm. When I told my father that a groundhog was in the mulberry tree next to the Upper Barn, he thought I was joking him. He saw for himself, however, that a specimen of Marmot monax, indeed, had burrowed into the main trunk of the dying tree, about ten feet above the ground.

   Each year, a groundhog, with its home (I finally figured out) under the foundation of the silo on the east end of the Upper Barn, scampered to the nearby pear…

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Added by Mark Small on April 23, 2015 at 6:08am — No Comments

There oughtta be a law: government cannot subsidize professional sports.

   In the early 1980s, I visited Indianapolis from Chicago. I thought construction of a football stadium here was rather odd, given Indianapolis lacked a National Football League® team.  “Field of Dreams” had yet to be produced, but the concept of “build it and he will come” was a reality. Mayflower® moving trucks, as everyone well knows, transported the Colts from Baltimore to Indianapolis in 1983.

   The Colts now have played as the team of Indianapolis longer than as the team of Charm…

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Added by Mark Small on April 22, 2015 at 8:02am — No Comments

Poem from 1986

Dusk

c. 1986 by mark small.

Cattle crop lower branches

of the tree line

     luminescent with the sun

14 shades of glowing green---

but for the cottonwoods,

leaves upturned in whiteness,

pages to be read by breezes.

Hot July fragrances

on heavy corn-pollinated air---

     and mown hay

     and cut peppermint.

And blades of timothy, sweet

to the tastes of the horses.

And a falling sense of…

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Added by Mark Small on March 12, 2015 at 6:14am — No Comments

Mitch the ... makes Purdue clerical employees take a hit; hey, there's always Plasma Alliance.

   On March 1, 1980, I moved to Lafayette, Indiana. I obtained employment on the clerical staff at Purdue University, across the Wabash River from where I crashed on a friend’s couch. A few months later I moved to a basement apartment in the student ghetto. At 15 North Salisbury, I paid $112.50 for my half of the rent, and the price included all utilities and basic cable. I did not own a car. My job, in the Life Sciences Library, was a six-block walk from my residence. A grocery store…

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Added by Mark Small on March 1, 2015 at 7:34am — No Comments

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