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[ • 10 Jan 2017 • No Comment ]
Still trying to figure out why the president-elect is so allergic to the idea that Russia hacked aspects of our recent election–especially the idea that it was done to help him or hurt Hillary Clinton? A bizarre allergy that puts him at odds with every US intelligence agency?     There are two possible answers and both may apply.      The obvious one is that any suggestion he did not win his electoral-college victory all by himself–let alone with help from a foreign power–is...


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[ • 5 Jan 2017 • No Comment ]
A week after the election, noting Trump’s surprising performance among college-educated voters, The New Republic’s Eric Sasson declared that these Americans might be “the most deplorable of them all.” The educated had absolutely no excuse for opposing Hillary Clinton, he wrote: “They’re not suffering or desperate, and have no concrete reason to hate the status quo or to feel like they are in decline.” There it is, folks. You’re either an ignorant hillbilly, or you had no sane reason...


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[ • 4 Jan 2017 • No Comment ]
Trying to make political (i.e.,Trumpian) predictions at this point is a fool’s errand. But, fool that I am, I succumb to (a) the tradition of would-be pundits doing so for the New Year and (b) the blandishments of those who bait me for not coming up with answers to the unanswerable. Among the numerous problems lie the internal contradictions of Trump’s own campaign promises, the conflict between many of those promises and the avowed policies of the Republican Congress and, finally, conflicts...


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[ • 3 Jan 2017 • One Comment ]
President Obama plans a farewell speech next week in Chicago, and perhaps he’ll notice that while he’s been in Washington his hometown has become the nation’s murder capital and largest gang war zone. Worth reflecting on is the city’s upswell in violence last year that followed political protests against law enforcement and a pullback in policing. The Chicago Police Department reported 762 homicides in 2016, the most in two decades and more than in the cities of New York and Los Angeles...


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[ • 29 Dec 2016 • No Comment ]
Illinoisans have no cause to be modest. The state’s legislators are unquestionably the best that money can buy, and Bruce Rauner, Mike Madigan and John Cullerton spent a combined $100 million to purchase them in 2016. The second most underreported Springfield political story of 2016 is that the governor got more bang for his bucks while the speaker got his proverbial clock cleaned, losing his precious House super majority. Madigan’s Democratic majority dropped from 71-47 to 67-51. The...


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[ • 28 Dec 2016 • 2 Comments ]
If Democrats want to recapture their old self-image as “the people’s party,” their political self-examination will have to go deeper than strategy and further back than millennials can remember. The party’s alienation from the white working class began in the streets of Chicago outside the 1968 Democratic National Convention. There, antiwar protesters and activists for a host of countercultural causes fought the police of Mayor Richard J. Daley while the nation watched on...


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