Craig Ladwig ravages Bob Hall over Pleasant Ridge as Jeff “Me Too” Gahan pouts.


Don’t worry, because Shane is here to help.


(comparative more pluterperfect, superlative most pluterperfect)

More than perfect

Usage notes: Seems to appear only in James Joyce’s “Ulysses”

And now, also in Ladwig’s column, although if Bob Hall is more than perfect, where does that leave Jeff Gahan?

Ladwig’s going to need an excellent new word when he gets around to analyzing NA.

LADWIG: About Pleasant Ridge, by Craig Ladwig (N & T)

 … We used to joke here about the occasional politician who seemed to wish that he commanded a better class of citizenry, that he could replace them with a more sophisticated bunch. Today, too many Indiana mayors and councils adopt that very attitude. In doing so, they thumb their noses at the true driver of community development — respect for individuals and property.

The pluterperfect bad example is Bob Hall, mayor of Charlestown. Mayor Hall told a judge the other day, “I know it’s not politically correct to say this, but when you have a low-rent district, it invites people who are not contributing to society.”

The mayor was referring to Pleasant Ridge, an older section of town whose residents say he is conspiring with a private developer to raze their homes. Their attorney has presented evidence that the city is secretly attempting to lower property values there using selective enforcement of city codes to force those “low rent” residents out and make way for the more aesthetically pleasing.

Municipal policy throughout Indiana increasingly is directed toward punitive zoning, tax breaks for politically favored developers and subsidies for “quality of place” projects such as upscale subdivisions, classy downtown apartments, sports facilities, jogging trails and other recreational and entertainment amenities.

These supposedly will attract that better class of citizen through national corporations and the young professionals they bring with them. Does it work? More specifically, does it work for the people who actually call your town home?

Not unless you are in a small circle of insiders and political operatives — and then only for a limited time until bonding and tax revenue is exhausted. The strategy ignores how wealth is created or how Indiana towns have historically prospered.

Dr. Berry Keating and Dr. Maryann O. Keating want you to consider another approach. They will present a white paper at the Dec. 2 meeting of the Indiana Policy Review Foundation comparing the sense of well-being of various Indiana cities.

It suggests that the cities that do best are those whose governments addresses the basic needs of actual residents rather than the aspirations of prospective ones.