Thursday, June 6, 2013

Democrats Run Illinois ... Straight Into The Ground

For those unfamiliar with Illinois "governance," here's a brief overview of Illinois politics, past, present and future. It may be an omen for the future of U.S. politics as well.

Chicago politicians run Illinois.

Democrats and Unions run Chicago.

Here's a "leadership" roster of past and present prominent Illinois Democrats, including President Obama. All names mentioned are Democrats.

Rahm Emanuel went from helping President Obama run Washington to running Chicago as its current mayor.

William Daley, son of long time Chicago mayor Richard Daley (21 years as mayor) and brother of long time Chicago mayor Richie Daley (22 years as mayor), went from helping President Obama run Washington to in all likelihood running for and becoming the next Governor of Illinois.

He may well run in the Democratic primary against either or both current Governor Pat Quinn and/or wannabe Governor Lisa Madigan, Illinois Attorney General and daughter of current Illinois House Speaker Michael Madigan.

Meantime, Illinois Senate President John Cullerton and public sector union leaders resist fixing the state's considerably more than $100 billion shortfall in pension funds which are needed to pay the promised retirement benefits of public sector union members.

Cullerton and the Union leaders are presenting themselves as constitutional experts and saying that the more fiscally responsible plan put forth by Speaker Madigan and supported by Governor Quinn isn't constitutional. {NOTE: But if they are so sure about that "unconstitutionality," why not let Quinn and Madigan embarrass themselves by passing the unconstitutional plan and then sit back and watch it get struck down by the Illinois Supreme Court? Could the constitutional act be just that -- an act? Of course, it could be and it is an empty gesture.}

All of the aforementioned "players" are Democrats.

There is no Democrat-Republican gridlock in Illinois. The political and governnance "intramurals" are internal matters of the Democratic Party entirely, and the only problem is how gullible and naive the Illinois taxpayers will prove to be.

Based on past history, pretty gullible and naive appears to be the only correct answer. But just how gullible and naive the good citizens of Illinois will be this time, however, we'll have to wait and see.

Governor Bill Daley? has the entertaining but ridiculous story of how Obama's former chief-of-staff is aiming to fix what ails Illinois. Here's a political update on the Illinois saga:

"Democrats in Illinois have been at loggerheads for the past two years over how to fix their pension mess. State retirement funds are $200 billion short, and on current trajectory, will run dry by the end of this decade. Last week the state Legislature left town after hitting another stalemate, prompting a credit rating downgrade. But like a good Chicago politician, President Obama's former chief-of-staff Bill Daley isn't letting the crisis go to waste.

"Where's the leadership?" Mr. Daley griped to the Chicago Tribune. Senate President John Cullerton and House Speaker Michael Madigan "had different ideas on this [pension] bill. So who's the one who's supposed to forge a compromise? The governor."

Mr. Daley, whose father and brother were former Chicago mayors, hardly tried to hide his disgust. "I'm just stunned that this place is totally dysfunctional," he noted. "We have a governor who is like an observer, 'It's the legislature's fault.' Well, the legislature is supposed to compromise by virtue of the governor bringing the compromise together."

"The governor couldn't squeeze anybody," Mr. Daley added, taking a swipe at Governor Pat Quinn's "Squeezy," the python mascot for pension reform. "Is that how things are going to work? We're looking at another five years of this? I don't think so." President's Obama's former right-hand man also didn't parse words about the legislature's failure to pass a same-sex marriage bill: "It's crazy."

Incidentally, Mr. Daley is considering challenging Mr. Quinn next year in a Democratic primary and has been talking with potential donors. He told the Tribune he would likely make a decision within the next week. "I'm more seriously considering this by virtue of the debacle that seemed to happen with this legislative session," he said.

However, Mr. Daley's decision may be influenced by whether the House speaker's daughter, Attorney General Lisa Madigan, gets in. Mr. Madigan—who has ruled over Springfield for the last 30 years with an iron fist—has groomed his daughter to be his heir. Ms. Madigan passed on a gubernatorial bid in 2010 after two terms as attorney general. Now in her eleventh year as AG, she's unlikely to sit out another governor's race, especially given Mr. Quinn's vulnerability."

Summing Up

Politics sucks. But Illinois is in a class of its own.

In the end, self-governance means that we get the government we deserve.

And in Illinois, perhaps a secession by downstate communities from Illinois to escape the grips of Chicago pols is the only way out of this mess.

For the rest of us, maybe it's time to see what's going on in Washington and throughout our government run economy.

Sounds right to me.

Thanks. Bob.

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