So Many Neighborhoods With 50%+ Poverty Rates

If you missed Governor Steve Beshear’s address last night or just didn’t want to watch, here’s a PDF of his remarks. [SOTC 2014]

Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer is asking the public for ideas about how the city’s vacant lots can be redeveloped — and he’s willing to put some money on the table to get those ideas, according to a news release. [WDRB]

What? We love stories like this. The days of doctors making house calls are, for the most part, long gone. But one Southern Indiana doctor is bringing the practice back — only for your pets, though. [C-J/AKN]

Remember when we told you this would happen several months ago? And how people tried to deny it? The Louisville Zoo is partnering with a new hospitality vendor. [WHAS11]

Lt. Gov. Jerry Abramson, who has expressed a desire to focus more on education, is being mum on whether he wants to be the next president of the Kentucky Community and Technical College System. [Bluegrass Politics]

LG&E wants you to conserve energy because it’s super-cold. But you should be conserving energy anyway. [WLKY]

If Seattle can’t figure out gigabit internet, is there any hope for Louisville? Of course there is. And we’re not just saying that because of the silly Possibility City crap. [Engadget]

Bullitt County is still fighting over a smoking ban. This has been going on for at least a hundred years – or it seems like it. [WAVE3]

Kentuckians are no stranger to political corruption and vote-buying. Everyone in the Commonwealth gives an eye roll to news of money changing hands to get such-n-such candidate out of whatever race they’re in – because it’s everyday, it’s political reality. What’s not everyday is when a candidate for U.S. Senate comes forward to admit his opponent tried to buy him out of the race. [Page One]

Looks like WCPO in Cincinnasti is erecting a paywall on its website. Because they apparently haven’t realized that paywalls only work for giants like national newspapers. [TV News Check]

Publisher Tom Monahan will retire on March 31 after nearly 30 years at Business First. [Business First]

How close to poverty are you? Where can you find concentrated poverty in America? [Bill Moyers]

A Lesson In Combating Negative Press With GE

What do you do when you’re experiencing a non-stop flow of stories about layoffs and business cuts in Louisville? After you just convinced the public to believe you were moving 500 jobs back to Louisville and wouldn’t ever do anything like cut jobs?

You get your friends at a local business publication called Business First to spin things for you with a bunch of stories in a row like this:

That’s what you do.

Support Your Local Food Trucks & Ride A Bike

A positive note, finally! Louisville music is a big deal and it’s in the latest Nylon Magazine. Cheyenne Marie Mize is mentioned at the link but Nerves Junior and other music highlights are in the print edition. The now-defunct ear X-tacy and WFPK even get lots of page space. [Nylon]

Remember J.D. Byrider? Looks like it and its ilk are making the national news yet again for deceptive and shady practices. [LA Times]

Don’t get us wrong. We love trees and the environment (clearly). But this is what Greg Fischer has time to do? Time to create a tree advisory board? But no time to deal with LMAS, EMS, MSD, Parks? [WFPL]

Holding a vigil for ear X-tacy? What? [FOX41]

We wish this were more of a possibility in Louisville. Swapping tail pipes for pedals could pay huge dividends for public health and the economy. [HuffPo]

Pro-tip to Tom Eblen: No one outside of Louisville and parts of Lexington has a clue what “Hindu” means. [H-L]

Greg Fischer and his trust fund staffers couldn’t be bothered to actually improve the food truck situation so – get this – Metro Councilcritters are doing so. Maybe. Finally. [More WFPL]

Really? A constable in the southwestern part of town drew his gun on a shoplifter at Walmart and shot her? By the jacktard that’s been a problem for Louisville for YEARS? Giving all law enforcement a bad name. [C-J/AKN]

Here’s a big shocker, right? Louisville ranks high on a poverty list from the Brookings Institution. 54,721 people in extreme poverty tracts, an increase of 16,771. [WHAS11 & Brookings]

Food trucks won’t let their trust fund metro gubmint honchos rain on their parade and are having a thing tomorrow during the Trolley Hop. [Consuming Louisville]

Repair work is finally getting under way on the Sherman Minton bridge so people can stop freaking out for a few minutes. [WAVE3]

PNC is finally getting with the times and jumping on what the rest of the world requires: smart credit/debit cards. Naturally, the bank is spinning this as protecting their customers without mentioning it’s nearly required when traveling abroad these days. And your local business publication fell for the press release spin. [Business First]

The story about the woman who beat a guy to death with a baseball bat continues to get weirder and weirder. [WLKY]

Definitive End To The Ice Machine & Award Stories?

Yes, I’m harping on this again because the story isn’t finished.

By now, everybody has seen or heard Greg Fischer say he was Inc. Magazine’s Entrepreneur of the Year in 1990. If not, click here pronto.

By now, everybody has seen photos of the award Fischer actually won – provided by his campaign. Proving even further that he was not Inc.’s Entrepreneur of the Year in 1990 (as if the actual magazine and articles about the winner weren’t enough). If not, click here for that.

And by now, everybody should be aware that his campaign spokesperson isn’t letting this story die. She’s calling members of the press left and right to share a poorly-scanned article from Business First about the co-branded regional Ernst & Young award Greg actually won. Just in case you aren’t aware, click here for details. Or read about it for yourself via WFPL.

Which brings me to today. Since Fischer’s spokesperson is keen on proving me right, apparently, we need to take another look at the story that ran in Business First on July 9, 1990 (note that Inc. Magazine’s Entrepreneur of the Year appears in the January issue of the following calendar year, as seen in my original story).

It turns out Greg was but a subnote on this award for his father, George. And Business First still isn’t Inc. Magazine, kids. To prove it, let’s take a look at the story’s opening, which was conveniently illegible in the documents provided to others by Fischer:

1990 Entrepreneur of the Year Awards — Manufacturing Winner

BYLINE: John Filiatreau
SECTION: Vol 6; No 49; Sec 2; pg 2
LENGTH: 871 words
DATELINE: Jeffersonville, IN; US


George Fischer has made a habit of being in the right place at the right time.

He joined IBM in 1958, at the dawn of one of the Big Blue’s brightest heydays. Over the next decade, he thrived as IBM thrived, rising from a sales job to become manager of all its operations in Manhattan.

In 1968 he founded MetriData Computing Inc., a pioneer in the remote-computing industry. It was Kentucky’s fastest-growing company in the mid-1970s; among other things, it created and finetuned Holiday Inns’ reservation systems. Fischer launched the firm with $ 400,000, held on to the lion’s share of the stock, and sold out to Sun Oil in 1978 for more than $ 6 millon.

Then he took a little time off. “I was tired of computers,” he says. “I thought I was retired. “I devoted some time to traveling, played some golf. . .” but I got tired of that after 18 months.”

He let it be known that he was looking for something “totally different,” something that would “be a kind of a learning process,” and something that would involve a tangible product. “I had never been in manufacturing,” he explains.

His timing was good again in 1980, when he bought SerVend International (for a song) out of a Louisville bankruptcy court.

Isn’t that nice? Turns out what we’ve assumed about Greg Fischer is correct. His story is woah specious.

But the real story just keeps getting better. Recall that I’ve been saying for months (years?) that Greg Fischer was not an inventor of an ice machine. I think I’ve solidly proved – with the different stories he’s publicly shared and the patent data compiled – that Fischer wasn’t the big dog inventor of that fancy ice machine– his dad bought it for him.

Check this from the Business First story:

SerVend fell into the hands of Fischer’s older son, Greg, a 1980 graduate of Vanderbilt University’s business school, who soon was joined by his brother Mark, a 1981 Vandy graduate. They “started basically managing a very, very small company,” Fischer says.


Fischer gives his sons, now 31 and 30, most of the credit “for the building of the business.” Greg is vice president of sales and marketing; Mark is vice president of operations.


SerVend makes self-service ice, beverage and cup dispensers commonly seen in hotels, convenience stores and fast-food restaurants.

See? Yet more information about George Fischer buying the company.

Oh, sorry, wait for this. Here’s more information about the guy who actually invented those machines, Jerry Landers:

Thanks in part to the genius of designer Jerry Landers, a SerVend ice dispenser that once was 12 feet wide, six feet deep and eight feet tall is now just 15 inches wide, 24 inches deep and 30 inches tall.

Meanwhile, SerVend has steadily “upsized” its manufacturing capacity. It started in a 6,000-square-foot garage in Louisville, moved four years ago to a 85,000-square-foot plant in Jeffersonville, Ind., and is now ready to move again, into a new, “absolutely world-class,” 130,000-square-foot plant in Clarksville, Ind.

Yeah. About all that. Greg Fischer was but a subnote on his daddy’s not-Inc. MagazineBusiness First-Ernst & Young award for an invention his father purchased. The company that manufactured that invention was then moved from Louisville to Indiana, because it was easier (according to Greg Fischer at the Louisville Forum last week), and remains there today.

I told Greg Fischer and others (I greatly respect) a year ago that this was coming. He then lied (at worst, misled at best) to me, ignored the issues, blew me off and disparaged my character and integrity to reporters and supporters alike. Countless individuals told him that he needed to address these matters and get out in front of them so he could be in control of the story. I hope he takes me seriously now. Because I’m just scratching the surface and you know it.

To others: No, I’m not perfect. I have my own problems and issues. But I’m not a candidate running for major office and I’m not attacking anybody personally. I’m just sharing information with you before some well-funded Democrat or Republican makes a commercial about it all.