Wednesday, May 17, 2006


♣ I went to the Planning Commission meeting last night to speak in favor of the Fullerton Pike TIF district. Unfortunately, the discussion of this TIF has been postponed for another two months to the July meeting. This is unfortunate, as this TIF is needed to upgrade Fullerton Pike. Bloomington needs another good east/west artery and this TIF is necessary to complete the upgrades that have been planned for a long time. This will become especially important once the new Monroe Hospital is built and the upgraded road will allow quicker travel in the event of an emergency. I hope the Planning Commission will recognize that seconds save lives.

♣ NBA Commissioner David Stern said that the playoff bracket system would be modified to accommodate teams with better records. Right now, the three division winners are automatically seeded 1-3 even if other teams have better records. Dallas, which had the second best record in the West, was seeded fourth. The Denver Nuggets, seeded third, had a worse record than the Los Angeles Clippers, seeded sixth. Under the proposed plan, the division winners and the team with the next best record would be seeded according to record. While this would lessen the problem, a better solution is to go back to the previous format of two divisions per conference.

"Tongue Tied" on reports that an apartment complex had told senior citizens they cannot hold a Bible study in common areas for fear it would violate the Fair Housing Act. What a silly interpretation of the law. The FHA is not supposed to prevent private religious activity, it is supposed to prevent landlords from discriminating against someone because of his or her religion. The Bush Administration should step in here and make it clear that private religious activity, even in common areas, will not be interpreted by the government as religious discrimination.

"Tongue Tied" also reports that a student at Syracuse University has been thrown out of his dorm for making a racially insensitive comment. The student was disciplined after he made a remark to his resident assistant about a political list posted on her dorm room door. There is an obvious conflict of interest here. The R.A. was offended at what the student said about her display, so she used her power to punish dissent. The case should have been handled by a neutral third party, not by this particular R.A.

♣ I found it interesting that the New York Times is making an argument in favor of free trade and open markets. Is the Times suddenly a conservative-leaning newspaper, or is there more to this story than meets the eye? In any case, I agree with the editorial. Free trade and lower taxes (tariffs are taxes, after all) is something that would benefit both the industrialized West and the Third World.

Star Parker blasts the NAACP for opposing vouchers, especially because black families would benefit the most from escaping the government school system and getting into private schools. I've written about vouchers extensively, so I won't go into all those arguments again other than to repeat one very important point: with government money comes government strings, and I do not want religious schools to be forced to choose between their principles and the narcotic of government money. We have already seen the destructive effects of government meddling in religious affairs when the Catholic Church got out of the adoption business rather than be forced to place children with same-sex couples.