Friday, March 27, 2009

Self-Interested Indiana Week In Review Panel Promotes CIB Bailout

Once upon a time, public television was a place you could go to get unbiased public information. Unfortunately, WFYI's Indiana Week In Review is a complete captive of powerful special interest groups which could give a damn less about the public good. Take tonight's panel discussion on the bailout of the CIB. Host Jim Shella works for WISH-TV, which has a corporate sponsorship relationship with the Colts and Pacers. Lobbyist Mike McDaniel lobbies for the Capital Improvement Board. Lobbyist Mike O'Connor lobbies for the Indianapolis Colts. Jon Schwantes works for a Columbus, Ohio-based media company which owns WTHR, which also has a corporate sponsorship relationship with the Colts and Pacers. Star business reporter John Ketzenberger works for Gannett, which is owed close to $3 million by the CIB, a loan made to help finance Conseco Fieldhouse for the Pacers. The Star also has a corporate sponsorship relationship with the Colts and Pacers. The panel concludes that a bailout is not about the Colts or Pacers; rather, it's about the future of downtown Indianapolis. McDaniel says lawmakers and interested parties have been meeting weekly in private to discuss a deal since the beginning of the session. So much for open government. There is a consensus to raise taxes to pay for the bailout the panel concludes. The public will support it. Trust us.

Later, host Jim Shella continued his tirade against a Revolt At The Statehouse rally organized by private citizens petitioning their government about a number of grievances, including the continued public subsidies for the billionaire sports team owners and the CIB bailout. "Can a rally fail?" Jim Shella asked. Schwantes, who wasn't even present for the rally because he lives and works in Columbus, Ohio, concluded it lacked focus. He did not hear a single speech, but could repeat what others told him about it. Ketzenberger attacked it for lack of a theme. "It was a nice crowd but not large enough," he added. He was not present for the rally. "A group of thespians looking for an outlet," political hack lobbyist Mike O'Connor said. "It missed the mark." This is the same guy who worked as Chief of Staff to Mayor Bart Peterson, whose administration helped create the whole CIB financial mess. McDaniel observed it had a "common theme." There were people there who favor less government and don't want to pay higher taxes he commented. McDaniel watched the rally from the floor above.

Are you going to contribute to WFYI in the future for this kind of public television? Oh, I almost forgot. The show is sponsored by Ice Miller, the powerhouse law firm that lobbies for the Indiana Stadium & Convention Authority and a host of other clients interested in the CIB bailout. Let them pay all they want for the damn show. Just take it off the air and end the useless propaganda the self-interested panel spews weekly for the benefit of themselves and their employers.

UPDATE: While we're on this theme, the IHSAA announced today that it might have to look for a different venue to hold the final four high school football finals. It seems the pill-popper, Jim Irsay, is charging $100,000 more to the IHSAA to use OUR STADIUM than the organization paid to use the RCA Dome. So much for Jim Irsay's words at the grand opening of Lucas Oil Stadium that this is "the people's stadium."


Downtown Indy said...

IHSAA can't afford LOS rental fee.

Diana Vice said...

The disdain these people have for ordinary taxpayers is alarming. They not only look grouchy, but they sound downright mean.

Anonymous said...

Tip the minimum when you go out to eat. To me, that is fair. If they steal from us, we will be forced to "steal" 1-2% back via lower tipping. Don't worry about the servers, all the "professionals" claim these taxes help boost downtown which helps boost the economy, so as soon as the raise the taxes, more business comes through the door, from Greenfield to Danville...yea.

Downtown Indy said...

It's really no wonder so few people even turnout to vote, let alone get involved or at least pay attention to what their lawmakers are doing.

A war is being fought but the enemy isn't using guns, it is using psychological weapons. They have infiltrated and mostly gained control of the '4th Estate' which is nothing more than just another propaganda tool these days.

Public Television started out being an independent voice, unfettered by the influences of commercial (sponsored) bias. It bothers me greatly that (a) a reporter from a commercial network and (b) people with clear financial self-interests are using public television to advance their own agendas. And if anyone dares to raise concerns and voice opinions they are endlessly ridiculed and have their words edited, twisted into what a 'reporter' wants it to sound like instead of working hard to convey an accurate representation of those words.