Friday, December 03, 2010

Seminar On Gerrymandering Upcoming

The gerrymandering of districts is the act of drawing a map with political boundaries that serve to assure that the party in power stays in power. Libertarians, myself included, have long campaigned against this practice, urging instead for districts that are compact and geographical in nature, thereby allowing voters to more accurately select representatives that reflect the geography.

Common Cause Indiana is hosting a lunch seminar that addresses these issues.

When: Friday, December 17, 2010, 11am - 1pm
Where: Senate Chambers, Indiana State Capitol
Panelists include The Honorable Theodore Boehm, Indiana Supreme Court; Dr. Michael McDonald, Associate Professor of Government and Politics at George Mason University; and Virginia Martinez, Esq., Legislative Staff Attorney for the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF).
Register via this link. I'll be there. Look for me!

This is extremely timely, as the Indiana Legislature is charged with redrawing the map this year once the 2010 Census data is released. The release is expected to happen in February 2011, and the Legislature will be looking to act quickly. Proponents of an honest redistricting need to be active right away.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

OK Tea Party, Have At 'Er

I hope this causes incredible cognitive dissonance for many. From the Indy Star:
Operators of the popular Creation Museum in Northern Kentucky are seeking state tax incentives to build a creationism theme park at a nearby site -- a project that Gov. Steve Beshear officially will announce today.
That's a nice test for those who believe in Creationism and limited government. But, this item really has something for everyone:
Advocates for church-state separation question whether the tax incentives would raise First Amendment issues.

Louisville attorney David Tachau, who successfully sued over a state appropriation for a religiously affiliated pharmacy school, said he would have to further research the issue.

"It certainly sounds as if the mechanism for supporting a particular religious dogma would violate the establishment of religious prohibitions in the state and federal constitutions, but there may be slippery ways this could pass muster," he said.
There are some days I wish I did talk radio. Hmm... There's that podcasting...

A Complete Herbert

One of my favorite 'new' hobbies is Where's George? You've seen dollar bills stamped with the website and messages like 'track this bill'. Yeah, I do that. I've always been fascinated with currency and coins, thanks to the influence of my Dad, who has been a lifelong coin collector. It isn't just inflation and the Federal Reserve policy that holds my interest regarding Federal Reserve notes.

Here's my Where's George profile, for your amusement. The dynamic map is pretty great. Put your cursor over any state and you will see how many of my bills have been tracked there. Click on the state and you will see in which counties.

The diaspora are interesting. I can recall trips by some hit clusters (Niagara Falls, NYC), and you can see how I've beaten a path between Indianapolis & Cleveland by way of Columbus. Almost a perfect line on I-70 from Indy to Columbus, then up I-71 to Cleveland.

Some 'Georgers' are complete Herberts. They go to the bank every day and get straps of $1 bills, mark them, and conduct all of their transactions in ones. The last thing I need are my friendly bank tellers thinking I spend all my time at strip joints.

Monday, November 29, 2010

Thinking About Podcasts

I've generally enjoyed the experience of producing the LPIN's podcasts, but have been thinking of doing something more creative, probably in place of the LPIN one. The last thing I really need is another project. I'm looking to reduce projects, not take on more.

So, there have been two ideas I've been tossing around. One involves interviews with members of the Cleveland punk/underground/indie rock scene. The other is some kind of, dare I say, variety show?

The punk show is pretty straightforward. It occurred to me that the scene is getting elderly in a hurry. The bands I have in mind are generally not current ones, having played from the mid-70s to early 90s. There are a lot of fascinating characters in that scene, and a lot of stories to document. I know that many of these folks aren't going to be writing these things down. That's too much like work. Talking for interviews is easy and fun besides. Now, it has also occurred to me that I don't live in Cleveland. No big deal. I wouldn't want to be the only one doing the interviews. There are better connected people who have interviewing skills that can also do them.

The variety thing... Well, that's not straightforward. I have a lot of interests, and also am not a fan of regimenting or formating a show in a rigid fashion. Why not talk about hockey, root beer, politics, music, and have an interview with a friend all in one show?

The punk thing would be for posterity. The stories are invaluable, and I would work as a sort of archivist. The variety thing would be my favorite kind of 'radio'- totally idiosyncratic, where the process is the fun, and bonus if anyone listens. I'm sure my Libertarian / political friends would push me to continue the LPIN podcasts. Preferences?