Chicago Sun-Times

April 2010 Archives

(Knoxville, Tennessee)

Before Rod Blagojevich got in trouble with the feds and before former governor George Ryan went away, there was another governor.
Ray Blanton was my first indicted, tried, convicted, imprisoned head of state.
And all those memories came flooding back as I arrived here yesterday to bid farewell to an old pal:

http://www.suntimes.com/news/marin/2196268,CST-EDT-carol25.article

Not this time around anyway.

Am in Springfield where 12,000-15,000 protesters marched around the Capitol demanding that schools and social services get funded, not cut.

They were orderly but loud. Just not loud enough to penetrate the walls of the General Assembly.

Lawmakers, looking down the long barrel of the November election, aren't about to pass a tax increase.

But this protest is a sign of what the recent Pew poll shows....almost 80% of voters are fed up with government, regardless of party affiliation.

The lawmakers down here may be ignoring them at their peril.

It's 6:39AM and I'm heading down the Stevenson to Springfield.

By the looks of the cars hurtling down the highway with me, bumper stickers proclaiming union affiliations and support for teachers, there will be a crowd converging on the Capitol.

Illinois, near budget bankruptcy, is heading over a financial cliff. And yet lawmakers exhibit a certain tone deafness to the emergency at hand. If you doubt that, read on:

http://www.suntimes.com/news/marin/2181726,CST-EDT-carol21.article

DuPage County Outrage

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There are approximately 7000 units of government in the financially crippled state of Illinois.
Many are redundant.
And expensive.
And in the case of the DuPage Water Commission---just one awful example among many---the people running it have proven they don't know what they're doing.
And so converted a pile of cash reserves into a sea of red ink.
Can Illinois afford this any longer?

http://www.suntimes.com/news/marin/2151181,CST-EDT-carol11.article

Forrest Claypool is going to make it official on Tuesday.
He's in.
And ready to fight for a job that seemed like a slam dunk for the Machine status quo.

http://www.suntimes.com/news/marin/2137857,forrest-claypool-runs-assessor-040310.article

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