Thursday, February 12, 2009

Possible Scandal - Is Smoke Free Indy Supported By Government Funds?

The rumor out there is that Smoke Free Indy is at least partially supported by government funds. I hope I'm wrong. Otherwise, government money is being used to lobby another government agency.

If this is the case, where is the government money for those who disagree with smoking bans? Doesn't government money for one special interest group give them an unfair advantage? Why should taxpayers support a special interest group over another one? Doesn't due process require that both special interest groups receive public funds so the fight at least starts out to be even?

I'm continuing to dive into this and will let you know what I find out.


Matt said...

Fundamental question of private property right. Why is this even up for debate?

Mark W. Rutherford said...

To all anonymous posters (who by the nature of their comments seem to be shills for Smoke Free Indy) - this is the rules for posting on my blog (it is prominently posted on the right hand column of my blog's home page):

Comments Policy of This Blog
All comments are moderated by me. Anonymous posts rarely get approved and posted unless neutral in tone and subject matter. Those who use their own names, or use pseudonyms in which many know who they are, especially me, will usually get published, even if they are edgy and biting in nature.

LOLA said...

I will gladly speak as someone involved with Smoke Free Indy as part of my job and who would be involved otherwise as part of my passion for social justice issues.
Smoke Free Indy is a coalition. As others have already tired to post but to no avail , coalition members are from major health organizations such as the American Cancer Society, American Heart Association, American Lung Association, the local hospitals like Wishard and Clarian, the Health Department, and many more community focused voluntary organizations.
I work for the American Cancer Society myself. I can assure you any "lobbying" taking place is completely within legal limits for non profits. When you mention lobbying, know this; We may talk on the phone, or via email with council members occasionally, but the majority of our "lobbying" is of the grassroots variety coming from volunteers. This is citizen lobbying not the big money coming from the other side via the liquor distributors and the tobacco industry. We cannot for financial reasons take people to lunch, dinner etc...
So think about who has the money and who is do the REAL lobbying. Believe this; we may be financially outnumbered but we are clearly in the majority when it comes to people power.

Laura Furst

Mark W. Rutherford said...

Thank you Laura. A nice respectful comment with an opposing viewpoint from my blog's viewpoint. It is greatly appreciated.

Mark W. Rutherford said...

As a political party, the Libertarian's must report the names of all donors at or over $200 in a given year. I don't see any tobacco or liquor money in the reports I've reviewed. The Libertarian Party's position is one based on principle, not dollars coming to it.

Mark W. Rutherford said...

I'm thinking of the old witticism "Democracy is two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for lunch." Just because a majority of people might favor something, doesn't make it the right thing to do.