Post-Tribune Latest news from Post-Tribune Online en-us (Editor) Post-Tribune 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ Better options exist than extension of South Shore ]]> Lead story image

Increasing the use of public transportation, a desired outcome of the South Shore commuter line expansion, has merit. But U.S. Rep. Pete Visclosky’s proposal overlooks less costly, existing and environmentally sound alternatives while its speculative presumptions ignore critically important residential housing trends of the “millennial generation.” Ultimately, his expansion plan will be detrimental to growth and development in Lake County’s urban core and, therefore, must be re-evaluated. Amtrak service between Dyer and Chicago’s West Loop exists now. Adding commuter service to that line would enable service to begin without delay and not burden taxpayers with the costs of myriad studies, … ]]> Sun, 20 Apr 2014 02:12:42 -0500 <![CDATA[ Rutter: The ‘One Region, One Hallucination’ that endures ]]> Lead story image

If you insist on being cynical about good intentions, we’ll just ask you to leave and take your sorry attitude with you. So, it appears we will not be invited to offer our expertise about social interaction, comity and good dental health to the “One Regionistas,” the self-ordained, institutional cure-all to everything that’s wrong hereabouts. The urge to pretend that Northwest Indiana is a Region — as if it were one place with common values if we could only figure out what those values are — is a paramount tradition here. But good intentions don’t necessarily produce identifiable benefit. Self-hypnosis … ]]> Sun, 20 Apr 2014 02:12:22 -0500 <![CDATA[ Note to Gary Council: It’s time to pay taxes ]]>

In our ceaseless devotion to public service, we want to remind the Gary City Council, and especially Councilman Ronier Scott, that the April 15 federal tax filing deadline is about a week away. It’s never a good idea to let that date approach without rounding up your bills, expenses and income and figuring your tax return. It’s your civic duty to pay the income tax unless, of course, you’re an international conglomerate with tax havens in Switzerland. The federal income tax is amusingly called “voluntary” in legal parlance although federal prison terms for failure to voluntarily pay it are hardly … ]]> Sun, 20 Apr 2014 00:08:40 -0500 <![CDATA[ David Rutter: Lake Central leaders failed their chance to teach ]]> Lead story image

We send our children to school and hope for the best. Take care of them, we tell the schools, and make them smarter. We’ll give you the children, but it’s only a loan. We expect to get them back as more complete humans. While you’re at it, make them better people. We demand a lot. So, it should not come as a surprise when public education sometimes fails and why the failure can reach deeper than merely test-taking lassitude. A significant failure occurred this month at Lake Central High School. As customarily happens, the inability to comprehend the mistake and … ]]> Thu, 17 Apr 2014 17:08:00 -0500 <![CDATA[ Rutter: Region’s cultural differences run deep ]]> Lead story image

The lady was perturbed, the normal harmonic after the phone rings at a newspaper office. She was peeved because her ladies church auxiliary was being hosed. The nature of the crime was that we had publicized three press releases about auxiliary church dinners at the other Polish Catholic Church parish in Lake County, and given her Polish Catholic parish only one. Yes, it clearly was a plot. She implied dark motives, perhaps linked to apostasy or because Polish Catholics who came from Warsaw always think they are better than Polish Catholics who arrived from Gdansk. Rather than risk a protest … ]]> Sun, 30 Mar 2014 02:05:24 -0500 <![CDATA[ Rutter: Rail expansion and the value of the 10-minute walk ]]>

Let me explain passenger trains by explaining the 10-minute walk. Never heard of Lake Villa, Ill.? No reason you should. It’s only 8,500 or so nice folks who live near the Wisconsin border. The town has no industry, no major university, no hospital and a modest but indiscriminate downtown. It’s a generous stretch to call it downtown. What the village does have is a pair of 300-acre lakes and tree-packed parks abutting them. It also has an elegant train station, one of the northernmost outposts in the Metra commuter system that spokes out from downtown Chicago in every direction — … ]]> Fri, 28 Mar 2014 23:26:32 -0500 <![CDATA[ Comedy Obama at its finest on Internet comedy show ]]> Lead story image

It was more amusing than piano-playing kittens to see Barack Obama plug the Affordable Care Act on Zach Galifianakis’ Internet comedy show. Not late night. Not basic cable. An Internet show: “Between 2 Ferns.” Even funnier was the president trotting out the same expression he normally reserves for Bill O’Reilly interviews. The chief executive is apparently working his way down the marketing food chain. Next it’ll be ObamaCare coupons under windshield wipers in the parking lots of flea markets. Then a series of laminated ads posted above urinals. Won’t be long before Joe Biden is wearing a giant syringe costume … ]]> Thu, 20 Mar 2014 02:09:13 -0500 <![CDATA[ ]]> Lead story image

How American are we? I’ve been watching sports events all my life and as a veteran our National Anthem is played before every sporting event. It’s sad for me to say during these NCAA college basketball eliminations, I haven’t seen the National Anthem before any game. Aren’t these college teams and fans missing something? In many countries, freedom is hard to find. Are we forgetting something? Many veterans have made it possible for these games to be played, or aren’t we veterans seeing the anthem before the game? I say our National Anthem should be seen by all Americans before … ]]> Sat, 22 Mar 2014 00:05:34 -0500 <![CDATA[ How did we get to this point, Porter Hospital? ]]> Lead story image

You know how memory can be such a tantalizing tease. One night you give away $13 million to a multimillion-simoleon corporation, and then the next day you completely forget what the deal was. Let’s see. Do I write the check to you guys Monday morning? Wait, wait. No, you’re just keeping the money instead of paying taxes? But is the check due Friday or maybe next Halloween? Or did we just decide you could pay whenever you want? No hurry. We trust you. Do we get free colonoscopies with that? So now that the Porter County Council and Community Health … ]]> Thu, 17 Apr 2014 06:30:59 -0500 <![CDATA[ War is hell, and hell does not create heroes ]]> Lead story image

He was a quasi-high school friend, one of those guys who hangs close to your group like the little fish that travel with sharks in the hopes of catching a few unmunched morsels. Of course that’s harsh, and makes it seem I traveled with some ravenous pack of carnivores. My informal pals were second-level nerds who weren’t bright enough to be dangerous. We were citizens on the Island of Broken Toys. The truth is, he was just a little more broken than the rest of us. He was a short, round Eddie Haskell who saved his charm for adults. But … ]]> Thu, 10 Apr 2014 06:34:51 -0500 <![CDATA[ GOP prefers imperial presidents — in Russia ]]>

“People are looking at Putin as one who wrestles bears and drills for oil. They look at our president as one who wears mom jeans and equivocates and bloviates,” said fraction-term governor and noted Putin-watcher Sarah Palin on Fox News’ Hannity this week. Russian President Vladimir Putin’s beefcake boudoir photography featuring his naked torso alongside large mammals is a siren song for Republicans. They’ve been in the market for a man manly enough to take charge of their shattered caucus. A dude dudish enough to stand up to the “feminized atmosphere” created by the media. They just can’t seem to … ]]> Thu, 10 Apr 2014 06:34:39 -0500 <![CDATA[ Some obvious ways to cut our military spending ]]>

Is it really a surprise that the governors of all 50 states are pushing back against President Obama’s push to cut their National Guard troops? The difference between the Democratic president’s approach and that of Republicans like Senator Tom Coburn is the president wants to cut spending on military men and women’s salaries and benefits, while Coburn seeks to cut spending on jets and ships. The president also wants to cut cost of living increases for retirees who served our country. Yes, the Pentagon is facing $37 billion in cuts. So, what would be the best way to match those … ]]> Thu, 10 Apr 2014 06:34:37 -0500 <![CDATA[ Letters to the Editor ]]>

Lies, and the pols who tell them Well, the blind, one-liner parrots are at it again, squawking the same lies their rich, white heroes advocate. “Raising the minimum wage will kill jobs.” Unfortunately for reality, the more money in a worker’s pocket, the more will be spent locally, lifting everyone’s boat, not sitting in some offshore bank to avoid taxes. “Climate change isn’t real.” Unfortunately, we’re witnessing that lie every day as weather extremes become more common. But don’t blame humans, ungodly oil profits might suffer. “We must eliminate the business tax to make Indiana completive,” says Republican Governor Mike … ]]> Thu, 10 Apr 2014 06:15:03 -0500 <![CDATA[ The Democrats can’t be heard at this hearing ]]> Lead story image

Darrell Issa, chairman of the House committee leading numerous investigations of the Obama administration, found a new way to silence Democratic critics who question his actions: He shut off the microphones. The California Republican had said that Lois Lerner, a key figure in the IRS targeting of tea party groups, would testify before his House Oversight and Government Reform panel on Wednesday, but instead she refused to answer questions. After Issa forced Lerner to invoke her Fifth Amendment rights no fewer than 10 times, the committee’s top Democrat, Elijah Cummings of Maryland, raised his hand to speak. Issa looked at … ]]> Tue, 08 Apr 2014 06:21:03 -0500 <![CDATA[ Crimean crisis gives us much to think about ]]>

Russian President Vladimir Putin has held up his hand, clenched his fist and given “half a peace sign” to the Ukraine, Europe and especially to President Barack Obama. And so the debate has begun: Is the invasion of Crimea a shocking turning point for modern Russia? Is it proof Obama has turned the U.S. into a paper tiger? Is it a crucial moment for the world in the 21st century? The beginning of Russian domination of the old Soviet Union and perhaps intimidation of Europe? Some points to consider as this breaking story continues to quickly unfold: The Iraq War … ]]> Mon, 07 Apr 2014 13:12:22 -0500 <![CDATA[ Obama too weak? The evidence isn’t very strong ]]> Lead story image

President Obama is such a weak strongman. What’s more, he is a feeble dictator and a timid tyrant. That, at any rate, is Republicans’ critique of him. With Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Obama’s critics pivoted seamlessly from complaining about his overreach to fretting that he is being too cautious. Call it Operation Oxymoron. Last Wednesday, I sat in a House hearing and listened to Republicans describe Obama exercising “unparalleled use of executive power” and operating an “uber-presidency.” They accused him of acting like a “king” and a “monarch,” of making the United States like a “dictatorship” or a “totalitarian government” … ]]> Sun, 06 Apr 2014 06:28:01 -0500