Dan Carpenter

Dan
Carpenter

Carpenter is a former newspaper columnist.

Full Biography

Carpenter is a former newspaper columnist.

Full Biography

February 19, 2017 5:21 PM

In dark days, 2 candles

The last time I saw Michael Gradison, I was helping him struggle up the steps of the City-County Building to join a demonstration on behalf of unionization for hotel workers making poverty wages. The last time I saw Joe Zelenka, I was trying and failing to lift him into bed in a nursing home room bedecked with memorabilia of his humanitarian work and his large, close family. Michael died Feb. 12 after fighting through pain…

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January 17, 2017 8:17 AM

Elected, unaccepted

He was perhaps our greatest president, and certainly one of our most despised. Abraham Lincoln had no choice, morally speaking. Opposition to expanding slavery was received in vast areas of the nation as a frontal attack on the American way of life. His words meant war to his fellow citizens; organized, protracted and even to this day incomprehensibly devastating. No other president holds such a distinction. For scope and depth of disaffection, Lincoln has nothing…

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January 8, 2017 11:30 AM

How Orange alters colors

“Better Red than dead,” the lefties were wont to say back in the Ban-the-Bomb days, when Donald Trump’s handlers were nannies. “Better Russkie than Democrat” is the contemporary version for fans of an unabashed pal of the Kremlin leadership who’s defied his nation’s own spy agencies in blowing off overwhelming evidence that our election process was violated to grease the defeat of a candidate the Russians don’t like. Trump has pretty much exhausted our capacity…

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December 18, 2016 2:10 PM

Hudnut: The height of loss

I’m not among the worshippers of Bill Hudnut, for reasons not worth going into at this sad and historic moment. I will say I mourn his passing, not only as a gallant man of bona fide faith but as a vestige of the Republicanism that used to speak to all Americans. True to Lincoln, the party of Ike and Javits and Brooke and Hudnut’s predecessor as Indy mayor, Dick Lugar, proposed to address racial inequality,…

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December 16, 2016 6:58 PM

Trump’s enemy — us

The winner of an historically foul election, loser of the popular vote by an historic margin, is making war on the majority who refused to support his candidacy. Constitutionally incapable of the sort of reaching out Barack Obama tried with (white male) voters “whose support I have yet to earn,” Donald Trump has proceeded to dial up the incitement of his base and by implication condone, if not celebrate, the eruptions of in-your-face bigotry his…

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November 27, 2016 11:01 AM

He’ll meet his Watergate

Now that the worst has happened, the establishment pundits and politicians tell us, we should hope for the best. My best hope when it comes to Donald Trump boils down to two words: Richard Nixon. While an infinitely more astute politician than the bloviator from Queens, the crook from California possessed the same ruthlessness, absence of empathy, huckster’s dishonesty and eagerness to exploit racial fear. Not coincidentally, he was likewise thin-skinned to the point that…

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October 25, 2016 9:57 PM

Savvy dudes for Don?

Ah, the brilliant rejoinders you think about too late. A few months ago, I found myself in a conversation with a cop who was a (very nice and conciliatory) Donald Trump supporter. I stood mostly silent through the litany of Benghazi this and Supreme Court that, and mercifully he got called away and I was free. I recall little that he said on Trump’s behalf, but suffice to say he deemed The Donald the man…

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October 10, 2016 11:31 AM

Red bird pecked Pence

Indianapolis Archbishop Joseph Tobin’s elevation to cardinal — the first such Roman Catholic official to preside in Indiana — is more than church news. It’s perfectly, if fortuitously, timed for this dismal election season. Among Tobin’s accomplishments on his way to the red hat — and there’s no way of knowing how much any of them figured in the Vatican’s assessment — include leadership in the dialing back of Rome’s pre-Francis crackdown on socially progressive…

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October 5, 2016 6:57 PM

Foreigners? Thank heaven

I have watched inner-city parishes that were near death, including my own St. Patrick’s, revitalized by the influx of devout Catholic families from Mexico and Central America. I have seen desolate inner-city commercial corners brought back to life by tireless entrepreneurs who had fled strife-torn countries in the Middle East and South Asia. Theirs is an American story that will fill books, and it is a happy one for the neighborhoods and cities where these…

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September 29, 2016 5:01 PM

The Donald and The Juice

Could Donald Trump be the O.J. Simpson for white malcontents? Or perhaps the Mike Tyson? In his book about the Simpson trial, “In Contempt,” assistant prosecutor Chris Darden said he eschewed a change of venue to the suburbs because he believed his fellow African-Americans were ready to demonstrate to the white world that they could deliver the blind justice they’d been so long denied. He was wrong. For all his clear guilt in two horrible…

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