Miami U. grad picked as Romney's running mate

Published: Saturday, August 11, 2012 @ 8:17 AM
Updated: Saturday, August 11, 2012 @ 6:21 PM


            House Budget Committee Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis. introduces Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney before Romney spoke at the Grain Exchange in Milwaukee, in this April 3, 2012 file photo. Romney has picked Wisconsin congressman Paul Ryan to be his running mate, according to a Republican with knowledge of the development. They will appear together Saturday Aug. 11, 2012 in Norfolk, Va., at the start of a four-state bus tour to introduce the newly minted GOP ticket to the nation.
House Budget Committee Chairman Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis. introduces Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney before Romney spoke at the Grain Exchange in Milwaukee, in this April 3, 2012 file photo. Romney has picked Wisconsin congressman Paul Ryan to be his running mate, according to a Republican with knowledge of the development. They will appear together Saturday Aug. 11, 2012 in Norfolk, Va., at the start of a four-state bus tour to introduce the newly minted GOP ticket to the nation.

Mitt Romney’s decision to select Republican congressman Paul Ryan as his vice presidential running mate is a bold stroke designed to convince skeptical conservatives that as president he will crusade for lower taxes and curbing federal spending.

Analysts acknowledge that Romney’s choice Saturday could prod voters to focus on the federal deficit and the sluggish economy as opposed to Romney’s career with a Boston investment firm.

But some GOP officials privately fear that the Republican ticket could hurt itself in the crucial state of Florida, which has 29 electoral votes, by emphasizing restraints on the rapidly growing entitlement programs of Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security.

Ryan, a Wisconsin lawmaker who chairs the House budget committee, has pressed for a sweeping overhaul of Medicare’s current fee-for-service plan into a system in which the federal government would subsidize private insurance plans so seniors could buy their own policies. Although Ryan has stressed his Medicare plan would not into effect for a decade, it could prove toxic with many seniors.

In addition, even though Ryan graduated from Miami University in Oxford, many Republicans were convinced that Sen. Rob Portman had a better chance than Ryan to tip Ohio toward Romney.

“It was a bold choice and it will virtually guarantee that the issues of the role of the government and fiscal responsibility will be a top priority in the general election,’’ said David Walker, former comptroller of the United States and founder of Comeback America Initiative, a nonpartisan organization that champions lower deficits.

“It increases the likelihood that the debates will be more substantive and the American people will be provided with a real choice,’’ Walker said. “And whoever wins the election will be able to claim they have a mandate for action.’’

But even as many Republicans praised Ryan as smart and possessing an encyclopedic knowledge of the federal budget, they know that Obama and Democrats will hammer the GOP ticket on the type of Medicare changes that Ryan has championed as chairman of the House budget committee.

“Paul Ryan is a great guy,’’ said Barry Bennett, a Republican consultant in Washington with close ties to Portman. “My heart’s 100 percent with Paul Ryan.’’

“But my head says we need to talk about how people are hurting (economically), not how to end Medicare. I just hope it doesn’t turn into a debate on how much to cut entitlement programs. If it does, we’re going to lose.’’

Chris Redfern, chairman of the Ohio Democratic Party, said that by picking Ryan, Romney’s “chances have been irreparably harmed in Florida. The majority of Floridians understand the importance of Social Security and Medicare.’’

As he introduced Ryan to an enthusiastic rally in Virginia on Saturday, Romney praised Ryan as “an intellectual leader of the Republican Party. He understands the fiscal challenges facing America: our exploding deficits and crushing debt – and the fiscal catastrophe that awaits us if we don’t change course.”

Neither Romney nor Ryan has much international experience.

“Who would have thought that only a decade after 9/11, the Republicans would have so little foreign policy experience on the Presidential ticket?” asked University of Dayton political science lecturer Dan Birdsong. “This underscores a simple ‘truth’ about presidential elections: domestic policy trumps foreign policy.”

Ryan signaled an aggressive course when he said that Obama and many others in Washington “have refused to make difficult decisions because they are more worried about their next election than they are about the next generation. We might have been able to get away with that before, but not now. We’re in a different, and dangerous, moment. We’re running out of time — and we can’t afford four more years of this.’’

Yet Romney appears to understand the potential danger with Ryan’s Medicare plans. The Romney campaign has advised its surrogate speakers that are differences between Romney and Ryan on some of the major issues, including Medicare revisions and reforming entitlements.

Federal spending on Medicare, which pays for health coverage for seniors, is projected to nearly double from $560 billion this year to $1 trillion in 2022. By 2022, Washington will spend almost as much on the entitlement programs of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid as it spends today for the entire federal budget.

Without restraining the growth of the entitlement programs, the only way the government can eventually balance the budget is through either large tax increases on all Americans or politically unpopular reductions in spending for national defense and domestic programs.

While the Ryan choice will thrill economic conservatives, particularly those who write for the editorial pages of the Wall Street Journal and the Weekly Standard, many analysts doubt whether he can broaden the appeal of the ticket to the handful of swing voters in a dozen states who will decide the election.

“It makes no sense whatsoever,’’ said one political strategist who spoke on condition of anonymity. “You don’t win elections with your base vote and this guy doesn’t get you anything beyond the base. What’s the No.1 rule? Don’t pick anybody who can hurt you? Do you think swing voters in Ohio are going to like this guy’s message?’’

Naturally, local Democrats and Republicans had different opinions on how Ryan would affect the local vote. Montgomery County Republican Party Chairman Rob Scott said having Ryan on the ticket will make his job easier because so many voters are looking for a real plan with specifics.

“There’s been a huge push for good fiscal management in our government, from Washington D.C. to Columbus to here locally,” Scott said. “And Congressman Ryan’s plan speaks directly to that.”

But county Democratic Chairman Mark Owens said he was looking forward to spelling out pieces of Ryan’s plan to voters, saying it would help the Obama campaign.

“Raising the tax burden on the middle class, cutting education through Head Start programs and Pell Grants that allow middle income families to go to college, all that’s going to have an effect on everybody in the Miami Valley,” Owens said.

Ryan, who was born, raised and still lives in Janesville, Wis., has an interesting parallel to the Miami Valley in the auto industry. General Motors closed its Janesville Assembly plant on Dec. 23, 2008, the same day as GM’s Moraine Assembly plant closed here. Janesville made trucks and SUVs, as did the Moraine plant.

Ryan voted in favor of the auto industry bailout, but later explained to The Daily Caller newspaper that he was told the industry was going to get government money no matter what, and he voted for what he thought was the better of two options.

Ohio Gov. John Kasich hailed the choice of Ryan, saying “he’s got a keen intellect and the kind of courage to think big on solutions that America needs from its leaders. That he’s a graduate of one of Ohio’s great universities – Miami University – doesn’t hurt either.’’

U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Centerville, said that “the selection of Paul Ryan shows that we are serious about putting this country back on the path to prosperity. Unfortunately, the President has failed to offer a plan to put Ohioans back to work or to end the largest federal deficits since World War II. Governor Romney has a plan, and our country is in desperate need of leadership.”

Asked how Ryan was different from other possible Romney running mates, Turner said Ryan is “young, dynamic, intelligent, well-studied and very well-spoken.” He said the fact that Ryan has been overwhelmingly re-elected six times in an otherwise Democratic district is proof that he can appeal across party lines.

Romney will be back in Ohio on Tuesday as part of a four-state bus tour. He will stop in Chillicothe and eastern Ohio, but the campaign has not yet said whether Ryan will be with him.

National Pepperoni Pizza Day 2017: Deals, bargains from Domino’s, Pizza Hut and more

Published: Wednesday, September 20, 2017 @ 11:37 AM



Stock art
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To many of us, every day is pepperoni pizza day, but on the calendar of official “food days,” Wednesday is National Pepperoni Pizza Day.

With pepperoni as the most ordered topping on pizza, you are going to want to celebrate, right? Who wouldn’t?

Here are some some National Pepperoni Day (and other day) deals.

Chuck E. Cheese: Chuck E. is offering a crispy pepperoni pizza Wednesday and Thursday when you buy any large regularly-priced pizza. Use coupon code #5485.

>> Read more trending news

Domino’s: You can get a free pepperoni (or any kind) in a buy one/get one deal. The BOGO is good through Sept. 24.

Marco’s Pizza: Get an extra-large, 1-topping pizza for $8.99.

Papa John’s: Get a free large 1-topping pizza when you buy any pizza using Visa Checkout. Order the pizza online, then you will get an email with a code for the free pizza.

Papa Murphy’s: Get a large pepperoni pizza for $6 when you donate $4.25 or more to the Children’s Miracle Hospitals. Order online.

Pizza Hut: Get a large pepperoni pizza for $1 when you buy a large pizza at menu price online. Use the code: PEPPEREONI1 at checkout.

Lawmaker slams WSU for email warning of anti-abortion activists

Published: Wednesday, September 20, 2017 @ 9:30 AM
Updated: Wednesday, September 20, 2017 @ 11:56 AM

WSU protest

A local lawmaker is criticizing Wright State University’s handling a planned anti-abortion event on campus today.

State Rep. Niraj Antani, R-Miami Twp., said Gary Dickstein, WSU’s interim vice president for student affairs, should not have sent out a campus-wide email warning people of the event. In the campus email, Dickstein said that the public university must allow the activists on campus, even if they express views that some might find offensive.

“I’m saddened it seemed as if he were taking a position on this protest when he said it ‘must’ be allowed, that it might be ‘offensive,’ and that he will ensure the group ‘behaves,’” Antani said. “This is disturbing when university campuses already seem to be a bastion of liberal ideology.”

RELATED: Wright State adds rules sign to rock that caused controversy last fall

The campus-wide email speaks to an ongoing issue of free speech on campus that has bubbled up in recent months.

Republicans such as Antani and U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Urbana have criticized colleges for not allowing speakers with conservative or controversial views from hosting events on campuses.

Approximately 10 anti-abortion activists from the group “Created Equal” will be in the WSU quad from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. today, according to a press release from the group. The group will set up 4 feet by 3 feet placards of “very graphic images,” according to the email.

“As an institution of higher education, it is imperative that we embrace diverse thoughts and ideas. Moreover, as a public university, Wright State must allow individuals or groups who wish to exercise their First Amendment rights on its campuses the opportunity to do so. This is true even when individuals and/or groups express views that some in our community find offensive,” the email states.

RELATED: Ohio State denies white supremacist’s request to speak on campus

Wright State encouraged people uncomfortable with the event to avoid the quad altogether or to seek support from the school’s counseling and wellness center, something Antani also criticized.

“I am disappointed Dr. Dickstein decided to send this email in the tone that he did. Students do not need counseling services because of a protest,” Antani said.

Wright State spokesman Seth Bauguess declined to respond directly to Antani’s comments. But, moving forward the university plans to notify students, staff and faculty every time an off-campus group plans to hold a demonstration on campus, Bauguess said.

“We had people in our community wanting to know about when these types of things were happening,” Bauguess said. “We decided we’re going to be more committed going forward to telling our campus about these things.”

Officials also see the demonstration as a learning experience for students who may not have realized that because Wright State is a public university, it is required to allow demonstrations and protests on campus, Bauguess said.

RELATED: Wright State may outsource Nutter Center management to boost finances

Other colleges across the country have turned down controversial speakers recently. Earlier this month, Ohio State announced it would not allow known white supremacist Richard Spencer to host a campus event because of safety concerns.

In August, Wright State posted a “rules sign” near a campus rock that caused controversy a year ago. In September 2016, the rock was painted by students to say “Black Lives Matter.” Shortly after, the word “black” was changed to “white” and later to “all.”

Lift a glass to Oktoberfest

Published: Wednesday, September 23, 2015 @ 3:45 PM
Updated: Wednesday, September 23, 2015 @ 3:51 PM

Since 1972, Octoberfest, the Dayton Art Institute’s largest fundraiser, has been untapped for the community.

The event was started by the DAI’s Associate Board to “encourage the community to have a fun weekend at its museum and have a chance to buy good art objects,” according to a Journal-Herald newspaper article from the time.

 

While it began primarily as a community event intended to attract a diverse audience to the museum, the Associate Board’s intent was expansion. With the success of that first event, and its subsequent rapid growth, it quickly became an important fundraising event for the museum, according to DAI Director and CEO Michael Roediger.

 

The first year 7,000 people attended and a glass of beer cost 10 cents. Receipts for admission and beer totaled $11,000. The funds raised now by Oktoberfest assist the DAI’s general operations. Roediger said that in good weather the event can net between $350,000 to more than $400,000.

  

Without those funds, “our programs and staffing would be cut significantly,” said Roediger. “Just by the numbers, Oktoberfest covers the annual cost and benefits for 10 salaried positions.”

 

Since its beginning in the 1970s, Oktoberfest has not only grown in numbers but expanded to a larger part of the grounds. Early Oktoberfest activities took place in the cloisters and in a garden where the contemporary gallery is now located. Today scores of artisan exhibitors display and sell their work in sprawling tents in front of the museum.

 

Attending the event is a tradition for many area families who have collected the commemorative beer steins created for the event since the late 1970s.

   
“The DAI’s Oktoberfest brings our community together to celebrate art, friendships and Dayton,” said Roediger. “The festival is a great opportunity for the community to get together and celebrate the museum and enjoy a beautiful weekend at one of the most gorgeous settings in town.”

Former teacher indicted on sex charges wants evidence suppressed

Published: Wednesday, September 06, 2017 @ 3:36 PM
Updated: Wednesday, September 20, 2017 @ 12:06 PM

Former Stivers School for the Arts English and drama teacher John S. Findley was in court today. He's accused of pandering obscenity or sexually oriented material involving a minor. Prosecutors say the victim was not a DPS student.

UPDATE @ 12:07 p.m. (Sept. 20):

A lawyer for former Dayton Public School teacher John S. Findley, indicted on seven counts of pandering obscenity of a minor, wants a judge to suppress evidence.

RELATED: Ex-DPS teacher arrested, police seek victims

Findley, 34, appeared in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court on Wednesday for a scheduling conference, and he now has a suppression hearing scheduled for Nov. 1.

Defense attorney Jon Paul Rion said the defense will challenge the way police collected some information.

Dayton police reiterated Wednesday that the investigation is ongoing and anyone with information or knows someone who claims to be a victim should call Sgt. Gary Lowe at 937-333-1132.

RELATED: Former teacher indicted on seven minor obscenity charges

UPDATE @ 10:06 a.m. (Sept. 20):

John S. Findley is scheduled to appear in Montgomery County Common Pleas court this morning for a scheduling conference.

MORE: 3 things to know about Dayton teacher arrested on child sex charges

Dayton police are sill asking if anyone believes they were a victim or know a victim of Findley to contact police at 937-333-1132.

UPDATE, 11 a.m.: The former Dayton Public Schools teacher indicted on allegations of sex offenses involving minors had been put on paid leave during the last school year.

John S. Findley was placed on leave on April 18, according to the president of the Dayton teachers union, David Romick.

This news organization has requested additional records from Dayton Public Schools regarding Findley.

FIRST REPORT: Former Dayton Public Schools teacher John S. Findley has been indicted on seven felony counts of pandering obscenity involving a minor and pandering sexually oriented material Involving a minor.  

Findley, 34, of Westona Drive in Dayton, was listed on Dayton Public Schools’ website as a teacher of drama and English at Stivers School for the Arts. DPS officials said Findley resigned effective July 9. It was unclear Wednesday how long he had taught at Stivers, but a program from a 2014 Stivers play lists him as being with the school’s Career Technical Theatre Preparatory Program.

RELATED: Five times area teachers lost jobs amid allegations

Court records show that Findley was indicted Aug. 29 for alleged actions that occurred between November 2015 and August 2016. Jail records show he was arrested Tuesday and entered a plea of not guilty, with bond set at $100,000. 

The next listed court appearance is a scheduling conference Sept. 20 in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court. 

Dayton Public Schools issued a statement Wednesday afternoon, saying the district “is fully cooperating with all law enforcement” in the case. Superintendent Rhonda Corr said DPS has established a crisis intervention team that will be at Stivers on Thursday and will be available “as long as necessary.” The district referred further questions to Dayton Police Det. James Hardin.

RELATED: DPS classroom aide fired over abuse accusation

One of the four pandering obscenity counts says that Findley did “direct or produce an obscene performance that has a minor as its participants.” The indictment also accuses Findley of promoting the material for sale or dissemination on Aug. 8 or Aug. 9 of 2016.

The three counts of pandering sexually oriented material involving a minor include language saying Findley “created, directed or produced” the performance. 

Six of the charges are second-degree felonies, according to the indictment, while one is a fourth-degree felony. 

Ohio Department of Education records show Findley held a four-year Alternative Resident Educator License that expired this summer. ODE lists his teaching field as Performing Arts, as well as a class in principles of art and communication.

ODE’s educator discipline site shows no prior professional conduct discipline records against Findley.

MORE: Englewood mom not alone as more locals face deportation, attorney says