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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments

Off Target

Here's a million dollars. Now shut up and go away:

Target Corp. (TGT) is slipping $1 million into The Salvation Army's kettle, but it still won't allow the familiar holiday bell-ringers in front of its stores.

This will be the third year that Target has banned the bell-ringers from its stores.

[. . .]

Posted in: Current Affairs

A true outrage

The culture of corruption continues. I just knew this election was rigged, but I didn't want to say anything about it, because I didn't want to sound like a whiny Democrat. But now the proof is here:

Fans of "Dancing with the Stars" who tried to call in and vote for Mario Lopez on Tuesday night may have talked with a Missouri woman instead.

Hundreds of people called Carmen Allen's cell phone by accident.

Posted in: Current Affairs

Anything for the poor

This is a much more useful occupation for prisoners to learn than making license plates:

The state Department of Natural Resources is running its Hunters Feeding the Hungry program, in which prison inmates process the deer for donation.
Deer firearm season begins Saturday and runs through Dec. 3.

Throw in some Canada geese, and we're talking a tasty Thanksgiving meal.

Posted in: Hoosier lore

Winds of change

Mr. Hoosier goes to Washington:

Baron Hill, the 9th District Democrat who reclaimed the House seat he lost two years to GOP Rep. Mike Sodrel, is discovering how much nicer it is to be a member of the party in power.

Hill said he went to a meeting at a law firm Monday where about 50 people turned out to talk with him. When he visited the same firm as a member of the minority party during his first stint as a congressman, about six people showed up, Hill said.

Milton Friedman

Milton Friedman, a giant among giants, died today. He wasn't just a brilliant economist who pushed the benefits of the marketplace and understood the the connection between economic freedom and political freedom:

Posted in: Current Affairs

Suck it up

Take a lesson from your peers, Fort Wayne politicians:

The Columbia City Common Council unanimously turned down a raise for itself Tuesday night but granted a 3 percent raise to other elected officials.

Wake me when it's over

The Democrats, who capitalized on the theme of Republican corruption, turn to the likes of Harry "real estate" Reid and John "Abscam" Murtha for leadership. The Republicans put Trent Lott back into leadership as I like to whip those who are members of a minority whip. It looks like we are going to be harangued for two years by John McCain and Hillary Clinton as they race toward their presidential nominations. I don't know about the rest of you, but I need a nap. Wake me when we get out of Iraq or we have whipped global warming, whichever comes sooner.

True almost-confessions

About O.J. Simpson's book "If I Did It" and his Fox TV appearances to promote it, there seem to be two  reactions: "What a complete fool" or "God, that scumbag!" Actually, I think it's a brilliant maneuver. After years of heroically and exhaustively searching for the real killer on the nation's golf courses, O.J. has finally hit on a way to smoke out the culprit -- lull him into a false sense of security that will make him slip up somehow.

Posted in: Current Affairs

In the stacks

Nothing will get you called a relgious-zealot prude out to impose your moral standards through censorship faster than asking whether public libraries have some responsibility to shield children from vile crap and its effects. The latest battle is over graphic novels, which have the look of comic books but have, to put it mildly, adult themes and treatments:

Posted in: Our town

Aww, make it better, Mommy

Well, this is just swell. Americans are mad about Iraq, so they kick Republicans out. But:

More Americans rank Iraq as the top priority of the new Democratic-controlled Congress, but nearly three out of five say the party does not have a plan to deal with the war.

In or out

I love cooking, and I love dining out, too. They are completely different experiences with different rewards and drawbacks. I'm sure the people behind this trend have found a nice niche that will make them a lot of money, but it seems like cheating to me, trying to get the best of both experiences but not really capturing the joy of either:

Posted in: Food and Drink

Too much at once

Is the mayor of Fort Wayne worth $135,000? Short answer: No. An employee's worth depends not on what he wants but on what his employers are willing to pay him. No City Council member in his right mind and planning to seek re-election next year would vote for it, because he knows how the employer -- the voting public -- would react.

Posted in: Our town

He's baaaack!

Posted in: Sports

Sorry, Paul

As a belated happy birthday to the Marines and a hello to my gun-totin' brother in Texas, here are the Marine Corps Rules for Gun Fighting. I especially like these three, which can apply to a lot of life situations, including editorial writing:

20. The faster you finish the fight, the less shot you will get.

21. Be polite. Be professional. But, have a plan to kill everyone you meet.

22. Be courteous to everyone, friendly to no one.

Posted in: Current Affairs

The lap of democracy

The wonderful thing about this country is that we still allow (mostly) local sensibilities to govern local conditions. If Las Vegas wants to be a wide-open sin city, for example, and Seattle wants to be a politically correct have for lefties, so be it.

Oh, wait, I got that a little wrong. Seattle is the city in which voters just rejected a ban on lap dances and tough restrictions on strippers:

Who's on first?

If you thought presidential politics had become so absurdly surrealistic that you had to laugh in order not to cry (or run screaming in terror), you might not have been far off the mark:

They're separated by more than 20 years, they come from opposing political parties, and one evicted the other from the White House. But Bill Clinton and George Bush act like a team, a pair of touring comedians with a well-honed act.

Prescription for change

When Indiana is one of only two states refusing to go to daylight-saving time, we can have fun arguing about it. Some can even claim that we're merely iconoclastic mavericks, not backward-looking obstructionists who never want to give up "the way it's always been." But what about being the only state still refusing to let physician assistants write prescriptions, even in a time of medically underserved areas and looming doctor shortages?

Posted in: Hoosier lore

The loyal opposition

Mike Pence, seeking the GOP leadership of the U.S. House, has annoyed the Indiana Democratic Party by urging fellow House Republicans to use their “talents and expertise to dismantle Democratic arguments and expose their liberal, big government agenda at every turn.”

On Saturday, a spokeswoman for the Indiana Democratic Party called the Indiana congressman's statement pessimistic and antagonistic.

Over the top

I haven't seen "Borat" and don't intend to, so judge my remarks about it accordingly. I'm squeamish about that kind of humor, which sets out to deliberately deceive people, then invites the rest of us to laugh at the fools who have been duped. Apparently, I'm one of the few people who feel that way. The movie made $50 million in eight days and seems on track to be the highest-grossing comedy ever. It's being praised from those across the political spectrum; here's a conservative who liked it:

Vietnamizing Iraq

Say it ain't so. Of all the things we did wrong in Vietnam, the worst thing we did was the way we just walked away at the end. Sorry, just kiddiing. Didn't really mean it. All those lives, just squandered. The day the helicopters took off from the roof of the U.S. embassy was one of the single most dishonorable days in American history. Is it possible we're going down that road again?