Friday, August 22, 2014

Chicago Politics and Illinois Taxpayers .... Another Example of Why Politics Sucks ...Connecting the Dots

Chicago politics has long been a study in corruption.

It also is a story of a city whose financial issues are dragging down both the citizens of Chicago and those of the rest of Illinois as well.

And to top it off, its schools are terrible while its high rate of crime, including murders, is second to none.

Meanwhile, there's no money left to pay the bills, but that doesn't stop the leadership of the teachers' and other public sector unions from claiming that more and more money is due and owing to them from the city's citizens and the rest of the state's taxpayers.

So apparently now it's time for another heist of the taxpayers, and the fix is in.

Rahm's Rival captures the essence of the latest move by teachers' union leader Karen Lewis to capture more taxpayer money for her largely unaccountable constituency:

"Joe Biden plans to parachute into Chicago Monday to raise cash for congressional Democrats and Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn. Left out in the cold is Second City Mayor Rahm Emanuel—President Obama's former chief of staff—who may soon have to fend off a challenge on the left to his re-election next February.

For months Chicago Teachers Union chief Karen Lewis threatened to challenge the unpopular mayor who's beleaguered by rising violence, school closures and fiscal woes. Last month she formed an unofficial exploratory committee after a We Ask America poll showed her leading the mayor by nine points in a hypothetical match-up. On Wednesday she filed papers with the state Board of Elections to raise money and collect signatures.

Ms. Lewis denied on Tuesday at a public forum in Chicago that she's made up her mind. . . .

Karen Lewis, president of the Chicago Teachers Union addresses the crowd during a rally in 2012.                            

Ms. Lewis suggested that she'd most likely run "if we get enough petitions" by the Nov. 24 deadline. Just 12,500 are required, which isn't a tall order given that the Chicago Teachers Union has more than 25,000 members. Ms. Lewis also mentioned needing money, but labor unions could bankroll her bid without much difficulty. American Federation of Teachers President Randi Weingarten has already pledged "to go all in."

The major overhanging question is whether Ms. Lewis wants to run or is merely trying to gain leverage in negotiations over the new teachers contract. The current labor agreement, which Ms. Lewis browbeat the mayor into by staging a seven-day strike in 2012, expires next year. Who can doubt that the union chief intended for the negotiations to overshadow Mr. Emanuel's re-election bid?

Note that Ms. Lewis has pointedly refused to set a deadline for making a decision—she officially has until late November—saying that "I want to run things on my timeline." During the next three months, she will no doubt engage in more brinkmanship to squeeze labor concessions out of the Emanuel administration. So maybe the real question is how much the mayor is willing to sell out taxpayers and kids to keep Ms. Lewis out of the race."

Summing Up

Politics sucks.

And in Chicago it really sucks.

Chicago politics has for far too long been a game of 'ignore the interests of the kids and fleece the taxpayers' played by experts, aka Chicago Democrats.

But now that it's become a too costly and unaffordable one, Mayor Rahm Emanuel apparently is trying to do some constructive things. But he won't be allowed to remain as Chicago's mayor if he stays on that constructive course.

So once again the kids and other citizens of Chicago and the taxpayers of Illinois are being set up again for another fleecing, regardless of whether Mayor Emanuel or Mayor Lewis is running the sick Chicago show the next few years.

As a result, we should expect that the city's downhill slide will continue in both the Windy City and the state of Illinois.

Sadly, that's pretty  much "in the bag."

At least that's my take.

Thanks. Bob.

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