A party in need of a leader
The Indiana Democratic Party is not a political entity which deserves any great respect. Nor is it a force to be reckoned with in the Legislature.
With the exception of Rep. Joe Donnelly’s robust victory over Republican Richard Mourdock in the U.S. Senate race, not much good happened for Hoosier Democrats in the last election. Keep in mind that Glenda Ritz, who defeated incumbent Republican Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennett, was a Republican who changed parties to seek the office of schools chief.
The end result is a state government controlled almost entirely by Republicans, who now have super majorities in both houses of the General Assembly.
The Democrats have no particular individuals around which to rally, which will make it tough to rebuild a vibrant and relevant state party. But we are impressed with new Senate Minority Leader Tim Lanane, a 60-year-old Anderson attorney, whose job it will be to lead the loyal opposition and ensure that all Hoosier voices are being heard on issues big and small.
Lanane, who was featured recently in a story by CNHI Statehouse reporter Maureen Hayden, seems to be taking a constructive approach. He’s not primed for daily combat, but is willing to stand his ground. His advice to his Democrat colleagues: “Keep your chin up and stay in the fight.”
While his role is certainly limited under current state Senate configuration, it is an important role nonetheless. We urge him to follow his own advice.
Halt! Police! Drop that camera!
It was an appropriate end to an incredibly stupid law.
The U.S. Supreme Court this week upheld a lower court ruling that found Illinois’ anti-eavesdropping law violates free speech rights when used against people who tape law enforcement officers in the line of duty.
As the law was being practiced, prosecutors could file charges and seek convictions against people recording police activity. The law even set a maximum prison term of 15 years! Ridiculous.
Also worth noting is that the public has the ACLU to thank for challenging and eventually defeating this usage of the law.
The ACLU argued that the right to record police is vital to guard against abuse. Of course it is. The people of Illinois, and elsewhere, are fortunate that the courts agreed.
Cheers, jeers and tears
• Cheers to Terre Haute’s Noon Optimist Club for its continued efforts to clothe needy kids. The Clothe-A-Child program is in its 78th year and seeks to raise $45,000 in its current fund drive.
• Cheers to Keirra Porter, the 15-year-old Terre Haute sophomore hurdler, for her invitation to compete next summer in the Down Under International games in Australia. She’s now attempting to raise money for the trip, and we wish her well.
• Jeers to Republican U.S. Sens. John McCain and Lindsay Graham for their relentless efforts to besmirch U.N Ambassador Susan Rice for her early briefings to Sunday talk shows on the attacks on our Embassy in Libya. If they would spend their time and effort on more important issues, perhaps Congress could someday resolve real problems.
• Tears for Cecil Tilford, the colorful storeowner whose strong support of a local neighborhood led to him being referred to as the unofficial “mayor of Twelve Points.” Tilford, who operated a variety store on Lafayette Avenue for decades, died last week at age 87.
Reader poll results
Recently, the Reader Poll at Tribstar.com asked:
How do you expect your spending to measure up to last year’s Christmas shopping season?
Results: 237 votes were cast.
• Will spend more — 23 votes, 9.7 percent
• Will spend less — 138 votes, 58.23 percent
• Will spend about the same — 76 votes, 32.07 percent
New online reader poll
What is the best way for Congress to avoid sending the federal government off the “Fiscal Cliff'”?
To vote, visit www.tribstar.com.
A party in need of a leader
EDITORIAL: Noteworthy in the news: MVC tourney an event worth having
It’s been a long time since the Missouri Valley Conference chose Indiana State University to host its post-season baseball tournament, but Terre Haute had never been more prepared for an event such as this.
EDITORIAL: Cleaning up voter rolls
It’s not a lot of money in the big scheme of things, but the $2 million designated in the recent session of the General Assembly will begin the messy but necessary process of cleaning up Indiana’s voter registration rolls.
EDITORIAL: Waging the ‘readiness’ campaign
Almost every Hoosier who starts college intends to finish. Unfortunately, those who arrive on campus unprepared in key academic areas are far less likely to fulfill that aspiration.
EDITORIAL: Insult to an independent press
Distrust of government secrecy has been elevated to an exceptional level with the disclosure the Justice Department covertly examined two months of Associated Press phone records to determine who leaked details to the AP about a foiled terrorist plot.
EDITORIAL: Noteworthy in the news: Dashing finish for the Sycamores
It’s always thrilling to see Indiana State University’s athletic teams do well in high-level competition, and two specific teams rose to impressive heights last weekend in the Missouri Valley Conference outdoor track and field championships.
EDITORIAL: Better monitoring needed to prevent local environmental messes
The nasty, hazardous messes lurking in the community raise a bottom-line, red-flag question. Could these environmental problems have been monitored and, thus, prevented?
EDITORIAL: Memo to U.S.A.: You can ‘SPPRAK’ just as we do in Vigo County
Our kids, truly, are ‘Making a Difference’
Some words in praise of boring government — Indiana’s
A conservative Republican governor has super majorities in both branches of the legislature. One might suspect such one-party government leads to major changes in public policy. This did not happen in 2013 in Indiana.
EDITORIAL: Doc’s prescient prescription
Viewed through a 2013 prism, Doc Bowen’s response to the AIDS epidemic looks merely prudent, routine.
EDITORIAL: Education remains worth the cost
Within the next few weeks, each of the local colleges will have conducted graduation ceremonies. A few days later, a different Class of 2013 will don caps and gowns for commencement — the seniors at five Vigo County high schools. It is still a smart, worthy aspiration for those high school grads to replicate the achievement of those college students by earning a higher-education degree.
EDITORIAL: Good news for downtown
For decades, it seems, downtown Terre Haute has been in the throes of change
EDITORIAL: Overall, state budget step in the right direction
For average Hoosiers uninterested in political point-scoring, the budget crafted by the Indiana Legislature inspires only muted, if any, fanfare.
EDITORIAL: The lessons of organ donation
The range of emotion surrounding life-saving transplantation of a vital organ is extreme. It is the ultimate “good news-bad news” scenario.
READERS’ FORUM: April 26, 2013
• Pence’s tax cuts benefit wealthiest
EDITORIAL: Noteworthy in the news
This does not qualify as a surprise in any way. But the Wabash Valley’s response to widespread flooding of recent days has been nothing short of impressive, even inspirational.
EDITORIAL: Still waiting for the jobs reward
The forces in control of Indiana government for most of the past decade need to show some results to Hoosiers in one primary category.
MARK BENNETT: Littered with irony: Why do people callously discard their trash, and who are they?
Though they aren’t acknowledged by the U.S. Census Bureau, there are basically two demographic groups of people … Those who would dump their old toilet on the banks of the Wabash River or a rural roadside. And those who wouldn’t.
EDITORIAL: Doing the dirty work to clean up tossed trash
A first-of-its-kind, coast-to-coast project to remove litter from U.S. roadsides brought the Pick Up America crew through the Wabash Valley two years ago.
EDITORIAL: Keep school security a local issue
The decision to provide armed security inside a schoolhouse should be made locally.
EDITORIAL: Noteworthy in the news
Indiana’s parks need your help.
EDITORIAL: The return of terror
Emotions today remain strong and raw in wake of Monday’s terror bombings near the finish line of the Boston Marathon.
EDITORIAL: A solution to distracted driving … stop it … now
You’ve got to stop. You know you do it. It’s a miracle you haven’t caused a tragedy already.
EDITORIAL: ‘Women of Influence’: 2013 selectees have given much to their communities
For the second year, United Way of the Wabash Valley has teamed up with local sponsors to select and honor a group of women who have made outstanding contributions to their communities, professions and families.
EDITORIAL: Noteworthy in the news: A new honor for our veterans
A commendation goes out today to state Rep. Clyde Kersey, a Terre Haute Democrat who led the charge this week in the Indiana House of Representatives to pay tribute to the nation’s Purple Heart recipients.
EDITORIAL: Shifting view on marriage
One could argue, as many have, that Sen. Joe Donnelly did the right thing last week when he dropped his support of government-sanctioned opposition to same-sex marriage. It wasn’t a radical move, considering most Democrats have now made the switch.
MAX JONES: The American Newspaper: Changing? Yes. Dying? No way!
It happened again this past January when all those “looking at the year ahead” stories started popping up on Internet “news” websites and broadcast “news” programs. Under a provocative headline reading something like “Five industries/businesses doomed to tank in the coming year,” there it was, a prediction based on an unsubstantiated “expert” analysis that the newspaper industry will continue in 2013 to suffer its slide into oblivion.
EDITORIAL: A chance to change our bad cultural habits
The sight of diligent, eager young people dragging trash out of the Wabash River wetlands is both inspiring and sad.
EDITORIAL: Maintaining high standards
It’s the raging buzzword in education circles these days. Everyone insists that higher standards must be met. Anything less is, doggone it, unacceptable.
Noteworthy in the news
EDITORIAL: Crack down on dumpers
There is a reason it’s called “illegal” dumping. It’s against the law. And there is a very good reason illegal dumping is against the law.
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- EDITORIAL: Noteworthy in the news: MVC tourney an event worth having