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Kokomo Tribune (Newspaper) - May 8, 1994, Kokomo, Indiana Opinion Sunday May Kokomo tribune A9 John C Wiles editor Arden A Draeger Publishergeneral tnattager Stephen Elkins Advertising dilebtdf Richard Sfchfam Circulation director Primary m Ruminations on a strange day Firs iti a twopart look at last weeks With voting turnout low 26 percent in Howard County dur ing last weeks primary funny things can happen Paul William Barrett may very well be an excellent Kokomo Center school board member But not right now The state statute clearly showed that Barretts candidacy was in violation He has lived within the district since last October The statute states that a candidate must have lived within the district for one full year It is sad that a candidate chosen by the people unknowingly the statute The political football nobodys touching is pushing Barrett out of the seat he has now been elected to Do we want a candidate taking an elected spot in a manner that violated the law Technicalities and semantics aside it is clear that Barrett qualified and fine a candidate he may be should not take the school board seat If the district county state or another interested party does not wish to contest this uninten tionally illegal election it would behoove Barrett to step down In a time when KokomoCenter is beginning to regain its compo sure we do not need an ineligible candidate taking a position The beat goes on for Indiana communities looking for piein thesky Two of the three Ohio River counties who were voting on legalizing riverboat gambling passed measures Crawford County passed the measure easily but nextdoor in Harrison County it won with only 51 percent of the vote In Jef ferson County the measure was beaten easily Rep name was not mentioned much during the past few sessions of the Indiana General Assembly And when dealing with an electorate that focuses increasingly on namerecognition his November election may be interesting Howards victory over perennial candidate Millie Bertram by 61 to 39 percent margin could not have been totally satisfying Former Libertarian turned Republican Jon Padfield is Howards opponent for House District 30 Padfield is an intelli gent thoughtful speaker and may surprise Howard Padfield idoes carry the stigmaof being a former Libertarian a party ijudged by most to be a radical band of knownothings Try to judge him on his current merits and you may be surprised Is the end of former state and Rep Jim Jontzs long polit fical career near Given little chance of defeating incumbent tSen Richard Lugar in November Jontzs embarrassing showing f against Lyndon LaRouche Democrat John Taylor can only cause glee in GOP households Jontz only managed 55 percent Of the vote against a man who had never garnered more than 11 percent intwo previous elections Underwear and dirty laundry What kind of undies did Fillmore Polk and Pierce wear Briefly Underwear has been a theme of my life this year An earlier col umn told of my midlife switch from the tightywhitie camp to the world of roomy boxers I got calls from as far away as Washington A congressman spokesman and myself debated on what choices the Indiana dele gation to Capitol Hill might make Probably almost all boxers save Rep Jill Long we decided Ive always thought underwear was a funny subject Like others in mv generation I remember and L fc TV V 1 J 1 f T5J Ann DeLaney Indianas disingenuous Democratic Party Chairf adopted the tenet of one Brady person Says that Jontzs weak showing can be attributed to a Bunch episode where a nervous lack of and late entryVin the race Horsepuckey Taylor had everi less name recognition and entered the race later than Jontz Our guess is that Hoosier voters have no interest in exchanging Lugars wisdom for Jontzs chutz pah and a vote for Taylor will be a vote for Lugar come Novem ber Brian Vargas a political pollster at Indiana UniyersityPur due University at agreed Its got to be an anti Like Jontzs victory Howard County Sheriff John Beattys vic tory in the Democratic Fifth Congressional District primary can only be called Beattys showing inthe largest county in the Fifth District shouldve been his largest margin since Howard County is his home and his political base Yet he took 65 percent of the vote districtwide in comparison to 57 percent in Howard County Expect incumbent Republican Steve Buyer to draw the rest of the districts attention to Beattys woes in Howard County including the tumultuous startup of the Howard County jail His campaign posse notwithstanding Beatty will have a hard time lassoing Buyer in November All of the incumbent Congressmen who were challenged inIndiana primaries won rather easily The throw the rascals out mentality that came with Perot in 1992 seems to have sub dued Which is not altogether bad Indianas delegation carries mpre clout and wisdom per capital than most other states With a combination of esteemed veterans like Lugar and rising stars like Buyer Indiana is luckier than most states I to imagine her audi ence in underwear as she gives a speech to a dour lot of old men and women That single show caused thou sands of kids to try this stratagem at school plays and speech classes To this day I try to picture people in the almost alltogether when speaking It just makes me more nervous though And nauseous So when President Clinton was asked about his choice of under garments on an MTV special it struck me as silly but harmless His choice briefs struck me as silly but harmless also But sure as fraying elastic there was a minirevolt against Clinton No some crowed others grumped How could he answer that pundits I understand the gripes to a point Acaller asked if I could imagine Ronald Reagan answer ing the question on MTV No thankfully Some of the revolt against Clin ton is a revolt against youth MTV which airs Beavis and Butthead and Beauty and the Beach is not to be confused with the Mclaughlin Group But is that bad The proportion of intelligent thoughtful 20some things is the same as 50some things though the way they express and gather these smarts are different To call Clintons appearance on MTV an insult to democracy as one columnist did is ludicrous What could be more democratic than answering unrehearsed questions from an audience A footnote to those who wish to make this a argument Why is that Clintons appearance on MTV answering questions lowers the dignity of the office yet presidentialwannabe Dan Quayles appearance as a potato chip salesman is deemed a cute effective ploy My first memory of politics was August 9 1974 Our black andwhite Philcos picture tube was on the blink but the tiny tinny speaker still played the sad tale of President Richard Nixons resignation I didnt grasp the issue but I grasped its weight I went to my room and with a sense of history and posterity wrote Nixon resigns on the appropriate date of my Winnie the Pooh calendar Watergate fostered political malaise and apathy in most Amer icans but it juiced my interest As I was eightand nineyearsold I wondered how Ford could par don Nixon I liked the idea that Jimmy Carter was a peanut farmer but that changed when my dad was laid off in 1979 My interest in politics continued through college as I predictably wandered to the left and back during the Reaganera Dont even get me started about Bush Point is the curiosity about politr ical minutiae that Nixons woes inspired in me continues to this day In fact I might still be flipping Bincakes had it not been for ixon Mike Royko nailed it in a column printed early last week Nixons resignation was the apex of journalism in this country Never again will the media be so high in the public eye All The Presidents the tale by Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein about how they derailed Nixon inspired hundreds of kids to take up journalism and fight the good fight Problem is that the good fight in many journalists eyes involves nothing more than attacking politicians with a wanton disre gard for truth or fairness Politicians to most journalists are the bad guys and they can do little if any right So just like the average Joe paints all journalists with the same brush the average Woodwardwannabe typecasts politicians as scheming Nixons Negativism is a poor longterm philosophy in life politics and journalism Though some journal ists are willing to give all sides a fair shake many in influential posts are more interested in attacking rather than reporting Until reality and fairness replace ambition and antipathy our polit ical scene will wallow dn mud Just another note to encourage calls ideas or letters regarding my column or any editorials run on this page Our phone number is 4593121 Our address is Kokomo Tribune 300 N Union Kokomo Ind for reading Follick is assistant Opinion page editor at the Kokomo Tri Letters Nick at Nite liberalism in Illinois CHICAGO Dawn Netsch has found her niche in the political market She offers Nick at Nite politics The Nick at Nite cable programming caters to viewers nostalgic for shows from the 1950s anfd 1960s Netsch offers liberal ism for the politically nostalgic Netsch 67 a former Northwest ern law professor and state legis lator who represented Lake Shore currently is state comptroller She knows numbers She has never lost an election She won the Democratic nomination for governor with a clever com mercial showing her sinking pool shots However her campaigiy is Property taxes are intensely long on substance Her political unpopular because they are dis pirtups include Adlai Stevenson connected from the individuals By George Will progressive personal exemption and would spend billion on education she is as loquacious as Hubert Humphrey and her program is the essence of old time liberalism redistribution of wealth by gov ernment power The northern edge of this north of Cape Cod the southern tip is south of Richmond Demo graphically the state resembles the nation and politically it is the nations barometer Only twice in the past 100 years and 1976 has it not voted with the winner jrt a presidential election So politi cians nationwide are watching Netsch campaign on her promise income taxes She would raise them bil lion She would use billion for property tax relief would use million to make the income tax progressive by instituting a current ability to pay and they are increased by inflation Affluent homeowners may be net wjnners from Netschs plan Many such people live in Chicagos suburbs home of a huge swing vote In 1992 twice as many votes were cast there as in the city Her pro posal to purchase million worth of tax progressivity is an orthodox liberal choice But the billion for education is a banal way of avoiding real reforms The worldhas turned often since the decades that Nick at Nite recalls since the post1945 baby boom triggered vast spend ing on public education Back then the education lobby insisted that increased funding would be reli ably associated with enhanced school performance But by now much research refutes the idea that variations in school expenditures correlate directly with school performance And abundant experience sug gests that private schools operat ing without the sort of sclerotic bureaucracies that burden Chicagos and other cities schools and spending less per pupil than public systems spend often do better They do better partly because parents are ener gized by the opportunity to shop for educational choices Does Netsch favor expansive school choice programs No The former professor of antitrust law launches a strained argument sug gesting this Antitrust interven tion is sometimes required when market failure in the form of inadequate information leaves consumers unable to make ratio Much from the caliber of schools to the safety and prosperi ty of neighborhoods depends on a high proportion of lies So does Netsch have ideas for policies to help dampen the increase of illegitimate births When asked she merely shows political delicacy by stressing that illegitimacy is a problem among whites as well as blacks Does she approve the New Jersey law deny ing welfare increases to mothers who have additional children while on welfare No Republicans have held the Illi nois governorship for 18 years The incumbent seeking a second term is Jim Edgar a bland down state legislator He has restrained spending but proposals for priva tization and welfare reform are gathering dust The conservative National Review noting the con informed choices among prod trast with reforming Republican ucts And government denial of governors nearby m Wisconsin Tommy Thompson and Michi choice programs protects the chil dren of parents who would be uninformed shoppers for schools Of course information could be made available by requiring schools to publish say students test scoresand graduation rates But teachers unions oppose choice so virtually all Democratic office seekers do too The best predictor of school per formance is the nature of the fami lies from which the children come to their schools The pupilteacher ratio is important but not as important as the pupilparent gan John describes Edgar as George Bush without the The Chicago Sun Times says Edgar offers only austerity without But Netsch offers spending as an alternative to serious change fresh funding for failing social structures If Illinois choice is between Nick at Nite liberalism or George Bush reruns the nations barometer is indicating a stultifying political climate Will is a networktelevision Class meets every 5 years I am proud to be a member of the Kokomo High School class of 1944 Our class includes homemakers engineers physicians teachers college professors ministers lawyers pharmacists accoun tants nurses small business own ers secretaries office workers stock brokers and entertainers We have one member who is a golf professional Others have been business leaders and heads of corporations Many have been active in their communities from California to Virginia and New York and from Florida to Min nesota Our class is unique in one respect have held a reunion every five years starting in 1949 Most of the credit for this goes to Norma Largent Noland Her unceasing and tireless efforts and her indomitable spirit have been a great inspiration to the rest of our class Our Golden Anniversary reunion will be held sometime in June of this year Merrill W Otterman Kokomo Ind Doctor staff are excellent Many times in our life we miss the opportunity to thank those who do so much for us The staff at Kokomo Family Care does an excellent job assisting the hun dreds of phone calls they receive and people they see daily Dr Jeff Wilsons staff and others working in that suite are absolute ly fantastic The life of a new mom can be scary but they have always helped me by answering ques tions calling in prescriptions making appointments and just caring the special way they do 6 CarlaDick Kokomo Ind Praises teacher Throughout our school lives it seems that there is usually one teacher who stands out and meant more than just a teacher Mary Cedars who taught elementary school at Roosevelt was one of those teachers to me and Im sure she stands out in the minds of many of her other former stu dents Please join me in making Mary Cedars 85th birthday on May 13 special I know how much she enjoy receiving a birthday card and short message from for mer students and friends Please send Marys cards to Box 183 PRC 626 Penney Farm Fla 32079 Shirley Talbert Kokomo Ind Letter guidelines Letters is your space to com ment on nearly any topic of gener al interest to the public The short er the letter the sooner it can be published The best guideline is one dou blespaced typed page The Koko mo Tribune reserves the right to edit all letters for grammar brevi ty good taste and libel If you cant type the letter be sure it is handwritten legibly Please no poems or verse All letters must be signed with the full name and address of the author and a daytime telephone number so authorship can be veri fied Only the name and city of residence will be published Address letters to Letters Kokomo Tribune Editor 300 N Union Post Office Box 9014 Kokomo Ind 469049014 You can bring your letter to the Tribune or you can FAX 456 3815
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