Parallel lives

Two years before America elected Barack Obama to be its President, the voters of Cook County, IL elected a Board President who had no executive experience and an undistinguished record as a legislator. In fact, Todd Stroger may been elected because during the final week of the campaign Senator Barack Obama sent a letter to voters calling Stroger  "a good progressive Democrat" who will "lead us into a new era of Cook County government."   

How's that new era worked out?   

Todd Stroger got in political hot water when he enacted a one percentage point increase in the county sales tax in 2008 in order the balance a bloated county budget. That move made the combined state, county and city tax in Chicago 10.25%, the highest in the nation. The increase seriously hit those Cook County retailers that specialize in large ticket items and woke many county residents up to the true cost of the corruption that has been part of Cook County Government for decades.  Mayor Daley came out against it and almost immediately County Commissioners attempted to overturn or at least reduce the increase.  Enough commissioners changed their vote to pass a reduction but they never had the 14 votes needed to override Stroger's veto. Things really heated up last fall when the state legislature overwhelmingly voted to reduce the number of votes it takes Cook County commissioners to override the President's veto, lest those representing Cook County in Springfield also became the target of irate voters. 

What is more disturbing is that some Stroger supporters are reverting to a level of racial and sexist animosity not seen in Chicago since Jane Byrne was mayor.  After Daley became mayor in 1991 a truce was negotiated and open attacks on other Democrats based on race and ethnicity pretty much disappeared. A flyer urging West side blacks to support the incumbent Cook County Board president in the February 2 primary makes it look like that truce has ended. As you can see, below, the allegations being slung are that the black women are only running to tilt the race to O'Brien, the chosen candidate of the Irish politicians who control the state. 





















This
article from the Illinois Review is linked to an audio interview with Stroger supporter and community organizer Wallace "Gator" Bradley who represents Soldiers 4 Storger and who discusses the above.  It will enlighten those who have never encountered anyone of his ilk.

My own take on the battle to replace Todd Stroger is that race had nothing to do with it.  He has demonstrated the combination of crookedness and greed coupled with gross incompetence that ultimately derails every political machine.  The those being called Uncle Tom's in the above flyer have the sense to recognize that and want Stroger out of the way before he dooms them all. The art of being both a parasite and a machine politician, after all, is to suck enough blood to fatten yourself but not so much that you impair the source of future meals.     
HT Instapundit
Two years before America elected Barack Obama to be its President, the voters of Cook County, IL elected a Board President who had no executive experience and an undistinguished record as a legislator. In fact, Todd Stroger may been elected because during the final week of the campaign Senator Barack Obama sent a letter to voters calling Stroger  "a good progressive Democrat" who will "lead us into a new era of Cook County government."   

How's that new era worked out?   

Todd Stroger got in political hot water when he enacted a one percentage point increase in the county sales tax in 2008 in order the balance a bloated county budget. That move made the combined state, county and city tax in Chicago 10.25%, the highest in the nation. The increase seriously hit those Cook County retailers that specialize in large ticket items and woke many county residents up to the true cost of the corruption that has been part of Cook County Government for decades.  Mayor Daley came out against it and almost immediately County Commissioners attempted to overturn or at least reduce the increase.  Enough commissioners changed their vote to pass a reduction but they never had the 14 votes needed to override Stroger's veto. Things really heated up last fall when the state legislature overwhelmingly voted to reduce the number of votes it takes Cook County commissioners to override the President's veto, lest those representing Cook County in Springfield also became the target of irate voters. 

What is more disturbing is that some Stroger supporters are reverting to a level of racial and sexist animosity not seen in Chicago since Jane Byrne was mayor.  After Daley became mayor in 1991 a truce was negotiated and open attacks on other Democrats based on race and ethnicity pretty much disappeared. A flyer urging West side blacks to support the incumbent Cook County Board president in the February 2 primary makes it look like that truce has ended. As you can see, below, the allegations being slung are that the black women are only running to tilt the race to O'Brien, the chosen candidate of the Irish politicians who control the state. 





















This
article from the Illinois Review is linked to an audio interview with Stroger supporter and community organizer Wallace "Gator" Bradley who represents Soldiers 4 Storger and who discusses the above.  It will enlighten those who have never encountered anyone of his ilk.

My own take on the battle to replace Todd Stroger is that race had nothing to do with it.  He has demonstrated the combination of crookedness and greed coupled with gross incompetence that ultimately derails every political machine.  The those being called Uncle Tom's in the above flyer have the sense to recognize that and want Stroger out of the way before he dooms them all. The art of being both a parasite and a machine politician, after all, is to suck enough blood to fatten yourself but not so much that you impair the source of future meals.     
HT Instapundit