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Articles Archive for January 2008

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[31 Jan 2008 | 20 Comments | ]

Following up one of my least favorite smells of the summer, raw sewage in Lake Michigan, I checked the Tribune’s endorsements for Metropolitan Water Reclamation District.
The Trib lets us know:
“If last year’s troubling saga of refinery effluent entering Lake Michigan imparted one lesson, it’s that the Chicago area needs to zealously guard the quality of its public waters.”
Of course BP did not pour much of anything into the Lake, nor did they propose to pour much more of anything into the Lake. The MWRD poured 220 million gallons of …

Our Columns »

[31 Jan 2008 | 34 Comments | ]

The news that Fred Thompson has pulled out of the race for the Presidency leaves me with a decision to make, You see, I was for Thompson and although he wasn’t perfect, to me he was the true “conservative” in the race.
The one problem I had supporting Fred was, the American people and me like governors or vice presidents as president. He was neither. His dropping out didn’t come as a surprise, he was not doing as well as some of us thought he would; whether he …

Our Columns »

[31 Jan 2008 | 6 Comments | ]

Proviso District 209 School Board President Emanuel “Chris” Welch is one of those curious political types who operates in the relative anonymity of Proviso township.
Situated two miles west of the city’s border, just beyond Oak Park, Proviso township is home to an array of folk who have hacked out their own little fiefdoms in the hinterlands, far away from the attention of the major media, or, for that matter, the U.S. attorney for the northern district of Illinois.
An ambitious attorney and would-be political player, Welch is a mediocrity who’s excelled …

Local Media »

[30 Jan 2008 | 3 Comments | ]

Larry Suffredin wants to be the next Cook County state’s attorney and says he’d fight corruption. But as a lobbyist, he’s been working for a man implicated in a mob bombing
Larry Suffredin — a self-styled reformer running for Cook County state’s attorney — lobbied for a landfill controlled by Fred Bruno Barbara, a businessman once charged with extortion and implicated in the mob bombing of a restaurant, the Sun-Times has learned.

Local Media »

[30 Jan 2008 | No Comment | ]

The race for commissioner of the Cook County Board of Review is getting a little ridiculous, as each day seems to bring a new flyer from the candidates raising issues that bear no relevance to the office.
Over the weekend, for instance, I got a mailing from incumbent commissioner Joseph Berrios telling me that Berrios favors “clean air and water” and “better schools.”
That came on the heels of a mailing from Berrios calling for a property tax freeze.

Our Columns »

[29 Jan 2008 | 2 Comments | ]

The Chicago Tribune has dedicated some editorial resources to reading other publications to find out more about Todd Stroger’s planned reorganization of the Cook County Hospitals management. The Editorial Board at the Trib tells us that they do not like what they are reading in other publications about this reorg.
The Tribune’s coverage of the shakeup has been limited to one story, which also questions how independent this board can be. It is a good question, but still begs for some background. How does the Tribune hold off …

Local Media »

[29 Jan 2008 | No Comment | ]

I have a naïve request for the balance of the presidential campaign: I don’t want to hear any candidate say one more thing about “creating jobs” or “bringing back jobs” or doing anything with the word “jobs” in it.
That might seem strange at a time when the economy is teetering on the brink of recession, and has eclipsed Iraq as the No. 1 issue on many voters’ minds.
Here’s my reason: Other than during the depths of the Great Depression, the government doesn’t “create jobs.” (World War II created most of …

Our Columns »

[29 Jan 2008 | 7 Comments | ]

Five years ago I wrote that the Democratic trend in Illinois was so strong we might never see a Republican governor again—barring some major scandal. Well, the past year or two set the stage for a GOP revival, but the Democrats are probably too smart to let it happen.
Gov. Rod Blagojevich is drowning in a cesspool of financial scandals, personal betrayals, bizarre antics and political miscues so pervasive as to drive his favorables down to Ahmadinejad territory—and the worst may be yet to come. I speak, as many do, of …

Our Columns »

[29 Jan 2008 | 15 Comments | ]

As a life-long Democrat, I could never understand the anger that the Clintons evoked from my father – a conservative Republican whose face choked red throughout the 1990s at the mere mention of Bill Clinton in polite conversation. Although not as vocal about Hillary, he didn’t like her either.
I kept my relationship with my father alive throughout the 1990s by not mentioning the name Bill Clinton at family gatherings – even when I was angry at what I thought was an unjust impeachment effort which my local Congressman Henry …

From Blogs »

[29 Jan 2008 | 2 Comments | ]

Sun-Times religion writer Susan Hogan/Albach reprises her rundown on how Chicago churchmen prospered in the wake of the Rev. Daniel McCormack scandal in this (farewell) blog. She did well in her short time at that newspaper, now being axed beyond recognition in paroxysms of budget-cutting.
Two years ago this month, the Rev. Daniel McCormack was arrested for molesting boys. He’s in prison now. And the top leaders in the Archdiocese of Chicago who might have stopped him have risen in their church positions.
Lead …