The following letter appeared in today's edition of the Journal and Courier, and since it reflects the sentiments of many in our community, we are reprinting it here.
By Mark Lubbers
When Mitch Daniels was recruited to lead Purdue University, he swore
off partisan politics. Fortunately, for the country and Purdue, he did
not quit the discussion of public ideas and policies.
Daniels haters such as Joe Perkins, a member of the Society for an Open,
Accountable Purdue will continue to press a serpentine argument that
any Daniels utterance related to the cultural, economic or governmental
life of the nation is politics. And no doubt they giggle every time the
J&C races out, sirens blaring, to find a false alarm.
President Daniels gets involved in the Republican Party or the process
of elections, let him have it. But please stop indulging the ridiculous
idea that dialogue on public policy is politics, especially when the
forum for the dialogue is an organization such as the American
Enterprise Institute. A two-minute excursion on American Enterprise
Institute’s website would reveal an ideological bent that is slightly
center-right and an Academic Advisory Board that is a who’s who of
leading national scholars from the very best universities in the land.
leaders – of both parties – are interested in what Mitch Daniels
thinks. And in that arena, Purdue benefits immensely from his
reputation, not vice versa. The J&C would do well to accept what
Daniels meant by quitting politics and exercise appropriate news
judgment going forward.