Dem convention, night 1

So I watched the big political show last night. Some thoughts:

It was good to see Ted Kennedy again, and looking surprisingly healthy. I was half afraid he’d come out on stage looking all skinny. That would have been bad. Nothing fantastic about his speech but it was perfectly serviceable. But doesn’t making that huge Kennedy sailboat the centerpiece of that video undermine a bit the whole John McCain seven houses thing? And then the first person interviewed in the clip was John Kerry. Hah.

Michelle Obama’s speech left me a bit cold. Most of the TV pundits seemed to rave about it, I thought it was just meh. The introductory video narrated by her mother was far more effective. The video had her deliver the line, roughly, “My children are the first thing I think about when I get up in the morning, and the last thing I think about before I go to bed.” Then she repeated the line word-for-word in the speech. That jarred. And it’s too long to be a catch phrase.

But will her speech accomplish that big job that everyone claims was its purpose: to make her seem a bit less Angela Davis-y (per the New Yorker). Probably, some. Not a home run though. One thing that intrigued me was her use of the conceit regarding “The world as it should be.” Here’s a graf from her speech:

Barack stood up that day, and spoke words that have stayed with me ever since. He talked about “The world as it is” and “The world as it should be.” And he said that all too often, we accept the distance between the two, and settle for the world as it is - even when it doesn’t reflect our values and aspirations. But he reminded us that we know what our world should look like. We know what fairness and justice and opportunity look like. And he urged us to believe in ourselves - to find the strength within ourselves to strive for the world as it should be. And isn’t that the great American story?

I think she means the country when she says “the world,” but that doesn’t fit with her purpose of playing down the “I’ve never been really proud of my country” bit. I mean, people don’t generally talk about “fairness and justice and opportunity” in terms of the world- they say it about America. It’s almost as if someone did a search and replace on the text to avoid those Michelle problem areas. Note, there’s nothing wrong of course with saying that America can and should be better- it’s just a problem for her.

Naturally, the kids were great, though the Barack video feed seemed tacked on and pointless. It was like he was holding that family hostage in order to take over their house.

Apparently it was attack Pat Buchanan night on MSNBC. He noted that Michelle didn’t mention religion in her talk about her family life and he wondered why. I think he thought that she was being a secular Democrat, but of course the Obamas will have a difficult time now discussing how big a part their church played in their lives. Anyway, Chris Matthews’s shoot-down was hilarious: We don’t have a religious test in this country, Pat, thanks to Thomas Jefferson. Cut down on the coffee, Chris. And I thought Rachel Maddow (now with her own show!) was going to hit him when she was discussing Pat’s somewhat infamous 1992 RNC speech in Houston.

Juan Williams’s reaction to the Michelle speech was very moving, but unfortunately, I agreed with Bill Kristol, who poured cold water over everything.

Ohio: McCain up by 1

The Dispatch released its first presidential poll results yesterday:

Republican John McCain holds a 1-point edge, 42 to 41 percent, in the first Dispatch Poll of the general election campaign. The Arizona senator’s lead is well within the poll’s margin of sampling error, plus or minus 2.2 percentage points. That means McCain could be ahead by as much as 5 points or Obama could be up by 3.

The poll was conducted before Joe Biden was named the VP nominee, so if there’s a bounce, it’s not reflected here. I’m doubtful there is one though.

Previous Ohio poll post here.

“Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland was greeted like a rock star in Denver at 5:30 p.m. eastern time Sunday when he arrived….” Hah. Politics is weird. (Link.)

Strickland comes out against sick-day initiative

“While we would hope that all Ohio businesses would make paid sick days available to their employees whenever possible, we believe that this initiative is unworkable, unwieldy and would be detrimental to Ohio’s economy, and we will be opposing it and asking Ohioans to oppose it as a result,” said Strickland and Fisher in a statement.

Against labor? Interesting. Here’s the rest at Openers.

Fascist bicyclists.

Tax credit shenanigans

A press release from State Rep. Mandel (R, Lyndhurst) and Jay Goyal (D, Mansfield):

COLUMBUS – State Representatives Josh Mandel (R- Lyndhurst) and Jay Goyal (D- Mansfield) announced today they will soon introduce legislation to offer state income tax credits to Ohio-educated graduates in return for their commitment to stay and work in Ohio.

Oh, my favorite: tax credits. One of the things that stands out for me about the 2004 presidential election was Al Gore’s mantra “targeted tax cuts.” (Second only to “lockbox.”) This season, tax credits are the fashion, and it seems everybody’s doing it.

McCain’s got his health care tax credit, and he’s got a proposed $5000 tax credit for people who buy new electric or hybrid cars.

Obama, clearly the winner in the tax credit contest, is proposing tax credits for having children ($7000), working ($500), child care (50%), tuition, building hybrid vehicles, and more.

There are two things wrong with targeted tax credits. One, the tax system is already ridiculously complicated, and clearly all these new rules will make it even worse, and will open the door to fraud. But more importantly, this is our money. A government which takes too much money from you, and then deigns to give some of it back- if you jump through some of these hoops they’ve set up- is too involved in our decisions.

Frequently the tax credit is sold as making citizens’ financial burdens lighter. This is a cynical ploy in which politicians pretend to care while they’re really trying to get people to toe the line on this or that government policy. How about this policy- let us keep more of our money in the first place, and then you won’t have to bother yourselves coming up with reasons to give some of it back.

Back to the Ohio residency plan, look at what they’re proposing for tax credits over 10 years:

* Associate’s degree: $5,000
* Bachelor’s degree: $20,000
* Master’s degree or higher: $30,000

I don’t have to point out studies which show that college graduates earn more than non-graduates. So this tax credit plan is also likely to be rather regressive- not good.

Here’s a different idea: reduce everyone’s taxes in Ohio. Then more of everyone will want to stay- including businesses. A plan like that might also help out a little problem like 7.2% unemployment.

UPDATE: Practically on cue, Mary Jo “Kilroy calls for targeted tax relief for middle class:”

Kilroy wants a college tuition tax credit worth up to $5,000 annually; increasing the child tax credit to 35 percent to a maximum of $2,100 for families earning up to $200,000; a $1,200 credit for the first $6,000 in elderly care expenses; $1,000 per person credit ($2,000 per family) for health insurance coverage otherwise lost between job, and finally a 401(k) match from the federal government of 25 percent up to $1,000 per year….

Kilroy said her plan could be paid for by repealing the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts.

Charming. Raise taxes on everyone, only give it back to those whose votes she wants to buy- I mean target.

More “It’s Gotta Be Hillary“. (Previous.)

Strickland’s brand of Stone Age union economics“. That’s a good one.

This is kind of cool. It’s like the Columbus version of Koyaanisqatsi. Bexley’s in there too. (Via RetroMetro.)

OH-15: Eggs-scruciating

Is this the end of Mary Jo Kilroy’s egging on fellow Dems with that charge against Republican Steve Stivers that a 2003 bill he co-sponsored stripped local jurisdictions of control?

Stivers’ Senate office told PolitickerOH.com that townships and counties have not been able to regulate agriculture since the 1950s, as stated in sections 303.21 and 519.21 of the Ohio Revised Code. These statutes forbid counties and townships, respectively, from regulating agriculture. Stivers’ office said before 2000, the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency was in charge of regulating agriculture but the 2000 legislation transferred regulatory control to the Ohio Department of Agriculture. Stivers himself was incorrect in saying that the 2000 legislation actually stripped localities of control.

Verification of that from a neutral source ought to end this. So does Kilroy now have egg on her face? (This is terrible, I know. I could go on, but I’ll have mercy on you.) I thought this issue was awful from the get-go, so I hope it’s dead now. Here’s the previous post, where it turns out I was on to something. (!)

The Carnival of Ohio Politics #131 is now up.

Port Columbus gets new airline

Some good news for all you flyboys:

Local travelers still stinging from Skybus Airlines’ demise are expected to get a welcome piece of news today, as discount carrier AirTran Airways announces it will begin flights from Port Columbus in November.

The Orlando, Fla.-based airline will offer nonstop flights to Atlanta and Orlando and Fort Myers, Fla., beginning Nov. 6. Atlanta service will be twice daily, while service to the Florida destinations will be once daily.

A bit limited but it’s a help.

Byrne/Eno

The name of my favorite band is Talking Heads. (Hah.) After 30 years, David Byrne and producer Brian Eno have a new record out. “Everything That Happens Will Happen Today.” Here’s the single:

I’m not sure what I think about that yet. Definitely a different sound from their other collaborations. Oddly, it reminds me of the 1974 Hollies classic “The Air That I Breathe.”

I like that song. (Via Lefsetz Letter.)

Tragic day in Ohio politics [Updated x 3]

This is rather shocking:

U.S. Rep. Stephanie Tubbs Jones, the first African-American woman to represent Ohio in Congress, has died after suffering a brain aneurysm, said sources familiar with the situation.

UPDATE: Acknowledging earlier reports that she had died, CNN is saying Tubbs Jones “remains in critical condition.” I hope so. (Via Plunderbund.)

UPDATE 2: The Plain Dealer story linked above is gone. Now,Tubbs Jones in critical condition at Huron Hospital is the story.

UPDATE 3: And now it appears that she has passed away. 10TV News is reporting that:

Tubbs Jones died at 6:12 p.m. after suffering a brain hemorrhage caused by an aneurysm that burst and left her with limited brain function.

“Throughout the course of the day and into this evening, Congresswoman Tubbs Jones’ medical condition declined,” Sheil said in a statement from the clinic and Tubbs Jones’ family.

No voting machines at home

Secretary of State Jennifer Brunner issued a directive yesterday forbidding county elections officials from taking voting equipment home and bringing it to polling locations on Election Day. The directive affects at least 23 counties, including Fairfield.

That’s one of those rules that common sense would lead you believe had already been in place since, well, forever. (Dispatch.)

The Feed

Columbus named finalist for Democratic National Convention

Columbus has made the final three in the bid to land the 2016 Democratic National Convention. Brooklyn and Philadelphia also moved to the final....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 2:22 pm

Huntington, Park seen as good fits for Lorain National Bank

Huntington Bancshares Inc. has been floated as a possible buyer of a northeast Ohio community bank said to be eyeing a sale, but one analyst says....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 1:58 pm

Apeks finally lands loan for expansion after 10 banks scared off by marijua

Apeks LLC is starting construction on a sorely needed new factory about four months later than it planned. Bank after bank turned the fast-growing....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 1:29 pm

Restaurant roundup: Short North, Easton, Powell, Dublin, Clintonville unwra

Hungry? Good. The holiday season isn't just a boom time for retailers, there are plenty of new restaurants ready to battle for your dining....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 1:28 pm

COTA Ridership at Highest Level Since 2004

More and more people are riding COTA this year, thanks in part to the new CBUS Circulator route that launched in May. The Central Ohio Transit....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 24, 2014 1:24 pm

Franklin County salaries

We've updated our Franklin County salary database to include 2013 compensation. The county had nearly 7,800 employees on its payroll last year,....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 1:07 pm

After Archie final two – Heisman Trophy winner vs. Lombardi, Outland Trop

After eight weeks and thousands of votes, Columbus Business First's After Archie competition has arrived at its finals: Eddie George will square off....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 12:50 pm

6-story self-storage building planned downtown

All those residents moving downtown could soon have a place to put their stuff. Columbus developers Brexton LLC and Edwards Cos. are teaming up....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 12:39 pm

Top of the List: Central Ohio’s busiest hospitals

The busiest hospital in Central Ohio has the busiest maternity department in the region, one of the largest neurosciences and stroke programs in the....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 12:26 pm

Columbus top destination for holiday shopping season, retail study finds

Ohioans are ready to shop and Columbus may lead the way. An annual study of retail spending projects sales in the state to jump 4.5 percent to....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 12:16 pm

IT firm Rampart Hosting growing through acquisition, new products

Rampart Hosting LLC is adding to its client roster with the acquisition of competitor Q1 Communicators Inc. while readying a launch of business....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 12:11 pm

Energy standards committee, PUCO not on same page at 1st meeting

Miscommunication derailed the first meeting of Ohio's controversial renewable and energy efficiency standards committee. Tom Johnson, the state's....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 12:04 pm

Construction Roundup: November 2014 — Part 1

The year is quickly coming to a close. Soon we’ll be featuring our year-end roundups that look back at the changes that have occurred in....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 24, 2014 11:02 am

Anchor Hocking parent threatened with NASDAQ delisting

The parent company of Anchor Hocking could be relegated to the minor leagues of NASDAQ. NASDAQ sent EveryWare Global Inc. (NASDAQ:EVRY) a deficiency....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 9:40 am

Neighborhood Launch Plans to Add Six-Story Storage Building

The Edwards Companies and Brexton Construction announced today plans to add a six-story storage unit building to the ongoing Neighborhood Launch....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 24, 2014 9:23 am

Morning Roundup: Low gas prices may boost holiday spending, BWC evades ques

In today's roundup: Macy's expecting consumers to be in a spending mood this holidays, BWC officials really don't want to talk about investigatory....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 6:35 am

National Roundup: New postal service chief pledges private-sector approach

Megan Brennan, the soon-to-be Postmaster General, has a heavy task on her hand in steering the beleaguered U.S. Postal Service in the right direction....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 24, 2014 6:09 am

Spring and Long Downtown Could See Further Bike Improvements

Although nothing is scheduled and the funding has yet to be secured, the city is planning significant streetscape-improvement projects for Spring and....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 23, 2014 8:37 am

Local Conference: Your Dietary Guidelines Are Changing

Every five years, the United States issues a revision of its Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The last revision was in 2010, and the newest....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 22, 2014 9:11 am

COSI Reopens Planetarium

After a 10 year hiatus, the Planetarium has officially returned to COSI. The updated exhibit has seen a million-dollar renovation and modernization....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 22, 2014 8:47 am

REIT pays $33.5M for Central Ohio distribution centers

A Boston-based REIT has slid into the Columbus market with the purchase of three fully leased distribution centers for a combined $33.5 million as....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 21, 2014 2:11 pm

Cardinal Health, Henry Schein join to get medical supplies in doc offices

Cardinal Health Inc.'s $300 million business selling medical supplies to physician practices is to be acquired by Henry Schein Inc. in a....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 21, 2014 1:21 pm

New Downtown Report Details Continual Neighborhood Growth

A lot of time, effort, and energy has been invested in the revitalization of Downtown Columbus in the past decade. A lot of money has been invested....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 21, 2014 1:02 pm

Bank-regulator relationship under fire in Senate hearing

The relationship between megabanks and their regulators came under fire Friday at a Senate hearing chaired by Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, who chairs....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 21, 2014 12:12 pm

Hyde Park Restaurant Group Exploring Old Cup O Joe Space

When Cup O Joe closed its location on The Cap in October, there was immediate speculation that the Hyde Park Restaurant Group might snatch up the....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 21, 2014 12:07 pm

Ohio unemployment hits post-recession low in October

Ohio's jobless rate reached a post-recession low 5.3 percent in October, according to estimates released Friday by the Ohio Department of Job and....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 21, 2014 12:02 pm

Which Ohio cities have the most-expensive homes for sale? – COUNTDOWN

Central Ohio is home to six of the top 10 cities in Ohio with the most-expensive homes for sale, including No. 1. That's according to Coldwell....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 21, 2014 11:14 am

EXCLUSIVE: Hyde Park buys Cup O’ Joe liquor license at the Cap

Could Hyde Park grab another piece of the Cap? The Beachwood-based restaurant group has gradually taken more and more space at the Short North....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 21, 2014 10:27 am

PowerPhilanthropy Friday: The Columbus Foundation

The Columbus Foundation is working to capture The Spirit of Columbus through images that showcase the determination, dedication, and commitment of....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 21, 2014 10:14 am

Why are master limited partnerships so popular with energy companies?

As U.S. energy production increases, so do master limited partnerships, a long-available financing tool that has become all the rage this year as....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 21, 2014 10:03 am

Pies & Pints scouting sites in Dublin, Cincinnati, Nashville

Pies & Pints is on the verge of a big growth spurt. The Columbus-based restaurant chain is opening at Easton Gateway Nov. 24 and will quickly....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 21, 2014 9:57 am

Holiday Shopping Guide 2014 No. 1 – Beautiful Things

The holidays are near! Thank you for reading our annual Holiday Shopping Guide! The 2014 Guide is presented by the The Columbus Foundation. Their new....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 21, 2014 7:00 am

Holiday Shopping Guide 2014 No. 1 – Beautiful Things

The holidays are near! Thank you for reading our annual Holiday Shopping Guide! The 2014 Guide is presented by the The Columbus Foundation. Their new....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 21, 2014 7:00 am

Restaurant Roundup: New Openings, Expansions and More

The local food scene in Columbus is usually bursting at the seams with news about new locations, openings, menus, construction updates, and more.....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 21, 2014 6:50 am

Grand Opening to Showcase New Market-Rate Homes in Weinland Park

Wagenbrenner Development is hosting a party on Sunday to show off the completed model home in their Grant Park development. The project, which first....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 21, 2014 6:50 am

Winter Guide to Local Music

It’s cold. We’re all cold. The wind is no longer giving us sweet butterfly kisses on our cheeks… it’s taking a machete to....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 21, 2014 6:50 am

Christmisc Ugly Sweater Pop-Up Shop Returns

Christmisc comes but once a year. You read that right. The pop-up shop known as Christmisc is returning to the South Campus Gateway once again for....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 21, 2014 6:50 am

Stage Left Rebrands as Ethel’s Bar, Unveils New Drinks Menu and Event

The glowing green neon lights of the Garden Theater sign have been illuminating the Short North off-and-on for almost a century. Short North Stage....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 21, 2014 6:50 am

Morning Roundup: OSU prez wishes TBDBITL mess had been handled already, Ohi

In today's roundup: OSU President Michael Drake wishes TBDBITL situation had been handled before his arrival, Ohio slaughterhouse ranked as the....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 21, 2014 6:20 am

National Roundup: Gap cuts profit forecast, blames apparel retail slowdown

Gap Inc. cited slowing sales, particularly at its namesake Gap stores, as it cut its earnings forecast for the rest of the year, ending in February.....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 21, 2014 6:00 am

The trends that affect the valuation of your business

When it comes time to sell your business, will you be ready? As an owner, you've spent countless hours building up the strength of your company, and....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 21, 2014 5:00 am

EXCLUSIVE: Dublin narrows city manager search to 2 finalists

It's not quite the Maize and Blue battling the Scarlet and Gray on the gridiron, but the contest for the Dublin city manager job has a familiar....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 20, 2014 5:09 pm

L Brands looking to make ‘big days much bigger’ over holiday shopping s

A good third quarter is welcome news at L Brands Inc., but the holiday season is what makes the retail business. The watchwords there remain....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 20, 2014 3:44 pm

Ohio banks, credit unions petition Rep. Stivers on retailer data breaches

Ohio financial institutions are hoping U.S. Congress will step in to prevent another costly retailer data breach. The separate trade groups....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 20, 2014 3:05 pm

Firm on hiring binge as software catches health reform’s ‘bundled payme

Increasing demand from insurers, employers and health-care policymakers to pay for better medical outcomes instead of more stuff is creating a....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 20, 2014 2:53 pm

Wexner: ‘Power of our brands’ setting L Brands apart, helping push prof

L Brands Inc. doesn't know what the holiday will bring, but at least it's entering the busy season strong. The Columbus-based retailer reported....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 20, 2014 1:49 pm

Pizzuti Teams up with Northstar Café on Lane Avenue Development

Upper Arlington’s rapidly growing Lane Avenue area is set to be the location of a new Northstar Café in the near future. Northstar owners....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 20, 2014 1:34 pm

FIRST LOOK: 2016 Acura ILX, ‘restyled, reengineered and reborn’

With the Acura TLX off to a fast start, Honda Motor Co. 's luxury brand will see if the ILX can follow. Honda on Thursday unveiled the 2016....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 20, 2014 1:32 pm

Mega Fall Weekend 2014 – Vol. 9

Happy Weekend! It’s cold, but at least we don’t have 70 inches of snow! We still have contests going on for Johnny Marr, and The Head....

The Walker Evans Effect

Nov 20, 2014 1:00 pm

AEP, other utilities join White House effort to promote electric vehicles

Every Ohio utility except FirstEnergy Corp. (NYSE:FE) has pledged to spend 5 percent of their annual fleet acquisitions budgets to buy electric....

Business First of Columbus

Nov 20, 2014 12:30 pm