Tuesday, November 28, 2017

Mitch Daniels Takes a Side Gig

Our former governor obviously has too much free time on his hands.

Daniels has been named a Contributing Columnist at The Washington Post.

He is currently the President of Purdue University, and previously served two terms as Governor of Indiana from 2004 to 2012.

Mitch can be found on Twitter at www.twitter.com/purduemitch

Thursday, November 16, 2017

Few Takers for Pence Dinner Tix

Your Indianapolis Observer finds it amusing that the Hudson Institute (which fled Indy for the bright lights of New York City about a decade ago) is having trouble selling tickets for their November 28 dinner featuring Vice-President Mike Pence.

Their solicitations for purchase are increasing in frequency and evident desperation.

Maybe, just maybe, few people want to be seen in public supporting this enabler of the current president.

His credibility, after all, has been shredded during the past year.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Pence Wastes Indy Taxpayer Money (Again)

Remember Vice President Mike Pence's Colts game walk-out stunt last month? Yep: it cost Indy taxpayers big bucks for his 15 minutes of fame (or, depending on your point of view, infamy).

According to Huffington Post, we forked over $14,000 in extra costs accrued by the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department (bringing the total for the piece of theater to close to $100,000).

“Vice President Pence should know better than to use taxpayer money to make a rhetorical point, but carelessness with taxpayer money seems to be a common theme with senior administration officials,” noted Noah Bookbinder, executive director of Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Pence's Agenda Doomed Indiana's Amazon Hopes

According to a report on IBJ.com, many analyses say Indy is out of the Amazon sweepstakes.


"As Harvard Business Review notes, Amazon’s selection criteria helpfully spell out the attributes cities MUST have if they want to be a serious part of America’s growing digital economy.

"This is a told-you-so moment for everyone who has championed K-through-college STEM education, strong infrastructure, green development, mass transit, walkability, placemaking and cultural diversity."

All things that the theocratic Pence agenda disdained (and a good part of the reason that his reelection bid was toast).

However, as the IBJ concludes: "We need to embrace this roadmap, and that’s no game."

Here's more:
"America’s latest parlor-game craze is 'Where Will Amazon Put HQ2?'

"It’s fun, because a huge portion of the country appears to be in the running for the $5 billion facility, if you start with Amazon’s requirement of a metro area with at least 1 million folks. That criterion produces a list of 53 urban/suburban areas, including metro Indianapolis.

"But the national media wants us to know that we’re entertaining a pipe dream.

"Several news organizations have analyzed ALL of Amazon’s criteria and determined the pretenders, the contenders, and the short-listers.

"It looks like Denver is the leader, while Indy is barely in the conversation.

"The New York Times probably does the best job analyzing the advantages and drawbacks of both cities. Slate likes Denver, Chicago and Philadelphia. MarketWatch stops at 11 contenders, including Denver. The Brookings Institution narrows it down to 20 contenders (not including Indy)."

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Sorry, Mike Pence, You're Doomed

Seriously. Our former governor thinks he can survive Trump.

Pundits (including Frank Bruni) disagree (see his column in the New York Times).

"So why has Pence formed a political action committee, the only sitting vice president ever to do so," asks Bruni. "Why is he taking all these meetings, building all these bridges? I guess there could be some imaginable future in which Trump falls and Pence is left standing strong enough to soldier on."

Right now, Pence "is squeezed tight into a corner of compulsory worship."

At least he's no longer in the State House!

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Pence: Mediocre

"Pence and the Rise of Mediocrity". The headline kinda says it all.

"He began as a talk show host in 1994 in small-town Indiana, fulminating about the global warming 'myth', the perfidy of Washington, and the verities of an evangelical Christianity menaced by cosmopolites.... A quarter-century later, Pence remains as small as his beginnings."

The article in "The Boston Globe" is positively scathing.

"As [Indiana] governor, Pence spearheaded a “religious freedom” law allowing business owners to deny service to LGBT citizens. Struggling to defend this, he gave an incoherent interview to George Stephanopoulos which exposed his excruciating inability to transcend robotic talking points. More than narrow, he looked dense," Richard North Patterson writes.

"Equally mindless was his opposition to a needle-exchange program, provoking an outbreak of HIV-AIDS in an Indiana county.... In the cul-de-sac of his mind, he plays to the only audience he knows — people who think like him."

Pence's "public persona reeks of smarmy sanctimony — every untruth, evasion, and vacuous bromide delivered in a portentous pipe organ voice accompanied by squints, nods, and shakes of the head which, Pence clearly imagines, convey a pious gravity. The effect is that of an unctuous church elder selling pyramid schemes to credulous parishioners, never doubting he is doing God’s work. Every self-serving self-deception reveals the depths of his shallowness, the breadth of his hypocrisy."

Is it any wonder that, facing almost certain defeat in his re-election bid as Indiana governor, he grasped 45's offer of an "honorable" escape? Unfortunately, 45 won the election and if/when he's impeached, guess who's next in line for POTUS.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Pence Now Tangled in Russian Probe?

This Indianapolis Observer notes that our (not) beloved ex-governor is now caught up in the Russian scandal engulfing the White House.

Add his name to the list of possible miscreants (Flynn, Manafort, Page, Stone etc.) as he appears to be the “Donald Trump transition team” member caught on wiretap.

The evidence of Trump-Russian collusion keeps piling up, as The Palmer Report points out, noting that "the more immediate question may be what Mike Pence kept discussing with Russian puppet Paul Manafort during the transition, and if it implicated Pence in Trump’s Russia scandal."

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Random Acts of Flowers Indianapolis

Random Acts of Flowers Indianapolis is part of a nationwide non-profit that seeks to improve "the emotional health and well-being of individuals in health care facilities by delivering recycled flowers, encouragement and personal moments of kindness".

Most of the "lightly used" blooms come from florists, grocery stores and funeral homes, others come from private celebrations for weddings or birthdays. (If you'd like to donate, contact Lindsay Potter, Program Manager, at Lindsay@RAFIndianapolis.org.)

Maybe you don't have still-perky picked flowers to donate, but you probably have at least a shelf full of unwanted vases. If they're 6 to 9 inches tall and "not too thin or too wide", take them to Random Acts of Flowers Indianapolis, Suite F, 1057 East 54th Street, Indianapolis, between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Another place to drop them off (if you're in the northwest quadrant of Indy) is 8222 Moore Road, Indianapolis: "put at front of stable in labeled plastic bin".

Help make a day brighter for someone who needs a bit of sunshine.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Pence Tries to Explain Away His Use of AOL Account

This Indianapolis Observer finds it easy to believe that former Governor Mike Pence used AOL to conduct Indiana State Government business (he's that clueless about the 21st Century).

But it is difficult to believe that he expects the courts to buy the argument that the public has no right to see what the hacker last summer has already read, that some of his AOL emails are too "sensitive" to release.

Read all about it numerous places, including The Washington Post.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

Are Pence's Government-Related Emails Secret?

While former Indiana Governor Mike Pence is frantically trying to keep his emails secret, a decision by a West Coast court does not bode well for his success.

"California’s Supreme Court ruled Thursday that texts and emails sent by public officials on private accounts or devices are a matter of public record, marking a victory for transparency advocates," reports Mollie Reilly in The Huffington Post.

"The state’s Supreme Court says the public has a right to access all communications about government business."

According to The Indianapolis Star, "Vice President Mike Pence continued to fight to keep secret a political white paper emailed to him while he was Indiana governor, petitioning the Indiana Supreme Court not to review a public records denial for the controversial papers. If opened, the communications could reveal a slew of Republican political strategies that Pence and dozens of other U.S. governors devised to fight former President Barack Obama and an executive order of his concerning immigration."

Read more about it here.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Confusing Fame for Competence

Philip Gulley nails it in the March 2017 issue of "Indianapolis Monthly":

"If you ask me how America ended up with Trump in the White House, I would tell you that two Americas have been contending with one another for some time. The first America values science, education, and reason. You know, all that boring stuff that made us the envy of the world. The second America confuses brashness for expertise, and fame for competence. The second America will give us the Trumps and the Kardashians, but never a Lincoln or a Jefferson. They will give us heat but no light, sound but no sanity. With the ascendancy of Trump, the second America has spoken. Cover your eyes, folks, this ain’t gonna be pretty."

Read his whole column here.

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Party at Pence's Yesterday a Smash Hit

Well, the party is history, but evidently it was great fun for the participants.

"Brandishing rainbow flags and signs that read 'Queer Love' and 'Trans Power', scores of activists marched Wednesday night toward Vice President-elect Mike Pence's rental home in Northwest Washington, D.C."

You can read more about it here, in coverage from USA Today.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Pence's Dance Party is January 18

"A queer activist collective in Washington, D.C. is planning a dance party in front of Mike Pence’s home this week, ensuring that the Vice President-elect never forgets a big ol’ group of queers partied on his front lawn.

"Organized by DisruptJ20 and WERK for Peace, the dance party, slated to take place in Pence’s Chevy Chase, D.C. neighborhood, will include plenty of biodegradable glitter and “rainbow paraphernalia,” scheduled in conjunction with a series of actions pegged to the inauguration of President-elect Donald Trump. The event will start at 6 p.m. on Wednesday, Jan. 18, two days before Trump is sworn into the highest political office in the developed world."

(Read all about it here.) This Indianapolis Observer can't wait to read the news coverage on the bash!