July 2006


Major Mistakes

Since leaving Indiana for Germany, Indiana elected a new Governor from the Republican Party, My Man Mitch Daniels.

Since taking office, Daniels has managed to do exactly one good thing: convince the legislature to enact a day light savings program. Of course he fucked it up when he left it to the federal government to decide which counties would be on eastern time and which would be on central time.

His biggest boondoggle has been “major moves,” an enormously expensive highway development project with things all over the state. The biggest project is the construction (extension) of I-69 from Indianapolis to Evansville and then on to Mexico. The current projected route follows State Road 37 south from Indianapolis to Bloomington before heading into a new terrain highway that will go right through the heart of the small, electorally insignificant southwest Indiana Amish community, then the path of the current I-164 around the eastern edge of Evansville before crossing the Ohio River and destroying the beauty of eastern Kentucky.

People seem to think that I-69 will be the economic savior and economic jump start that will take the relatively quiet and economically “depressed” southwest Indiana and make it unimaginably prosperous down the road (no pun intended).

This is, of course, insane.

Once construction of the highway is complete all the created jobs will be reduced to the new truck stops that will open every 20 miles or so.

It will not be the expected panacea.

Especially since it will be a toll road built by a private consortium.

Yes—what used to be free will now cost you money—and not just the gasoline in your tank. Imagine paying $20 to drive from Evansville to Indianapolis and saving a whopping 15 minutes across that distance over current driving options.

I have the vague impression that it will only cost money from Martinsville southward—which is an odd starting choice.

If I were a business in Indianapolis, I would be seriously concerned, because I’ll tell you right now that when I’m in Bloomington, the mere thought of paying more to drive to Indianapolis will certainly discourage me from making unnecessary trips to the capital city.

And I imagine I won’t be the only one driving less.

4 comments to Major Mistakes

  • Ed

    The only Major Move I want to see is Mitch Daniels out of the Governors mansion. I wish we had the right to have a recall vote like California, although, they now seem afraid to use theirs. Mitch recently said he didn’t know if he would run for re-election. Apparently he is aware of how much he is hated. But as he said the 75 year lease he signed with the Spanish-Australian firm will stand no matter what. Thanks Mitch, for nothing.

  • koko

    i hate tolls in general because i never have cash monies…boo hiss my man bitch!

  • OK, what’s the point of the governor having eaten a pork sandwich in all 92 counties? There must be some significance.

  • The pork sandwich thing… is odd, but its like bratwurst to my home state in Germany…

    I hope Mitch goes down next time around.