This is the February 22, 2016 edition of Left, Right and You!

Larry and I want to thank Campton Hills Township Trustee Joe Miller for coming on and giving voice to the (sane) opposition to the proposed just outside Campton Hills rehab center. Now that we’ve heard both sides, we can all come to a logical and non-fear based conclusion.

Larry, Joe and Jeff

We will continue to the conversation on Thursday!

Left, Right and You makes Mondays meaningful!

In an effort to completely cover the story and provide balance to the local news force, Campton Hills rehab center opposition leader Joe Miller will sit down with Larry and me to talk about the project.

Campton Hills

If you’d like to join the conversation, please give us a call at 847-931-1410.

Where’s the only place you get this kind of local news analysis? That’s right! Left, Right and You, Mondays at 9 a.m. and Thursdays at 3 p.m. with the Smiling Conservative, Larry Jones, and me, the Curmudgeonly Liberal, on WRMN AM1410. Don’t miss it!

Quick Hits – February 19, 2016

Of course it was dismissed!

Anyone with half a brain knew the racketeering suit former treasurer staffer Edmund Michalowski filed against his former boss Dan Rutherford wouldn’t pass the laugh test. So far, it hasn’t

Though the bogus sexual harassment allegation still stands, Judge Joan Lefkow summarily dismissed the more important contention that Rutherford and aide Kyle Ham forced Michalowski to do campaign work on State time. And that harassment assertion won’t go anywhere either.

michalowskiTo review, Michalowski made those allegations in the middle of a heated four-way 2012 GOP gubernatorial primary. Sensing an opening, Rauner ordered friend and Illinois Policy Institute lackey, attorney Christine Svenson, to put Rutherford in an untenable position.

You see, regardless of whether the harassment charge stuck, the story itself would raise questions about Rutherford’s sexuality. And we all know the IPI is about as homophobic as it gets.

But the best evidence of Rauner’s scheme was, in the middle of one of the biggest political bleepstorms in Illinois, his buddy Rahm Emanuel saw that Michalowski landed a six-figure Cook County Recorder’s office gig.

Rutherford’s abysmal response to this farce certain didn’t help his electoral chances, but this is exactly the kind of person Governor Rauner really is.

Our only solace here is that the plan almost backfired when Sen. Kirk Dillard made a late run nearly closing the primary gap. Trust me, if Dillard was Governor, we’d have reforms And a new budget.

 And BTW, if Dan Rutherford is gay, he could do a lot better than Mr. Michalowski!

 

Fake newspapers! Be still my beating heart!

LCGDespite the outcry, the fact that conservative gadfly Dan Proft and his Liberty Principles PAC have been distributing “fake” newspapers supporting their slate of candidates is about as new a development as Kanye West dissing Taylor Swift.

Candidates like Kane County Clerk Jack Cunningham have been using this kind of messaging medium for years, thought it certainly didn’t help Jack win many elections because:

  • Nobody reads newspapers anymore
  • People know these “papers” aren’t the real thing
  • Newspaper endorsements have lost their zing
  • The writing and editing in these “papers” falls just short of horrific

And as far as Proft’s “Lake County Gazette” goes, I haven’t seen that many run-on sentences since my son’s third grade class taped their book reports to the classroom wall.

Fake papers? It’s really hard to get excited about all this because even real newspapers are artificial these days. I’m far more concerned about Proft’s sudden support of U-46 School Board Member Jeanette Ward.

Dan! We need to talk!

 

It ain’t easy being the least of our brothers

I understand that entities like the Kane County Law Library and the Court’s child care option are fully funded by court fees and, with civil lawsuits on the decline, those worthy programs are suffering.

I understand that user fees are often more equitable than across the board taxation.

I understand that the proposed Kane County court fee hikes primarily affect folks filing civil lawsuits, not those unfortunate souls sitting in the morning traffic cattle call.

I also understand that one of the proposed fee increases amounts to just 10 cents.

court feesBut perhaps the reason civil suit filings are down is because it’s gotten too expensive to file one. So now these continuing hikes will only put those court projects into a fee inspired death spiral.

Here’s a perfect example! Were I to actually file that $1,000 small claims suit against the Edgar County Loons, it would run me around $234. To be fair, long distance service costs more and my opponents would have to pay those fees if they lost.

But yikes! $230! Of course we want to discourage frivolous suits, but 230 bucks to file a one thousand dollar small claims court case?

Any time we deny access to the courts – even if it’s unintended – it makes me very nervous. At what point do these fees start adding up to justice denied?

There’s got to be a better way to do this.

Quick Hits

Left, Right and You makes Thursdays better!

And we’ve got so much to discuss today too!

  • The Campton Hills rehab center gets voted down again. Here comes another lawsuit!
  • Despite the falling facade, the Tower Building sale will go through
  • Anna Moeller beats the ballot challenge again
  • It’s time to ignore Jeanette Ward
  • Ken Shepro wants to eliminate the County Auditor

We’ll take your calls on these topics too at 847-931-1410.

The only place you get real local news analysis is Left, Right and You, Mondays at 9 a.m. and Thursdays at 3 p.m. with the Smiling Conservative, Larry Jones, and me, the Curmudgeonly Liberal, on WRMN AM1410. Please join the conversation!

Clown Joker

Quick Hits – February 18, 2016

The deal will get done!

Despite what that local newspaper would have you believe, the impending sale of the iconic Elgin Tower Building is in no danger of falling through. The deal is 90 percent done and, just like it is with a marathon, the final 10 percent of the race takes a little more mental effort than the earlier miles.

Tower Building StoneThus, the current kerfuffle between the City of Elgin and the Stickling Foundation owners is nothing more than the final steps of a long negotiation dance.

When the City ordered property manager Neil Pitcher to erect a canopy around the building to protect errant Elginians from the falling façade, it was a gentle reminder that if they deal doesn’t get done soon, the Foundation will be on the financial hook for all sorts of costly repairs.

And it worked! That Monday canopy deadline forced the cash strapped Foundation to turn to the almost new owners, Capstone Development, for the funds to do the work. This cooperation will actually move the sale along. When developer Richard Souyoul said the shedding stone was “not a welcome situation,” it was his way of saying his patience only goes so far.

The bottom line? You’ll be hearing news of this sale sooner rather than later.

 

He wants to eliminate what?

Our favorite county jester was at it again last night at the Huntley candidate forum. With Auditor candidate and political patsy Craig Lee in tow, Chairman candidate Ken Shepro said, if elected, he’d do away with the Auditor position.

So why is Craig even bothering to run?

SheproSadly for Ken, this ain’t an episode of the Apprentice where you can simply fire someone who annoys you. The County Auditor position is mandated by State statute so it would take a referendum question to do away with the office.

And when you consider the important role elected auditors play in the county’s financial process, that’s not about to happen anytime soon. Though it is utterly fascinating to watch Ken explain exactly why he wants to do away with the position that held his good friend Coroner Rob Russell’s feet to the fiscal fire.

Shepro went on to say those duties would be farmed out to a private accounting firm!

Really!? What could possibly go wrong with Ken Shepro, the embodiment of crony capitalism, handpicking the firm that reviews the County’s finances?

 

The final word on Jeanette Ward

While it was important for all those calm school board meeting speakers to so eloquently rebut Board Member Jeanette Ward’s racist Black History Month rant, now it’s time to be a bit more circumspect.

U46 board 3And by “circumspect” I mean not falling prey to Ms. Ward’s vast drama queen propensities. You see, it’s abundantly clear she loves all that attention and, encouraged thusly, it won’t nearly be the last time she makes some sort of silly bigoted pronouncement.

Perhaps Hispanics will be her next target.

So before you react to another one of her prejudicial pronouncements, please consider that Ms. Ward loves being the center of attention and, once there, she’ll have no choice but to top herself with something even loonier next time.

Now that we know exactly who she is, our best bet is to treat her just like an insistently whining toddler.

 

Quick Hits

Quick Hits – February 17, 2016

Never underestimate…

… the fear that strikes deep within the hearts of local politicians during election season – like Larry and I just did.

Of course, I’m referring to the proposed Campton Hills rehab center going down to a 10 – 0 Development Committee vote yesterday. Though that the fat lady hasn’t quite sung yet, considering that vote, the odds of the full board giving the center the green light before March 15 aren’t real good.

But the odds of a lawsuit are! Who’d a thunk the Zoning Board of Appeals had more sense than a group of County Board members?

kane county 2

Damned if you do…

Though I’m decidedly disappointed in our daunted Development Committee, regardless of the Board’s final rehab center vote, there’s gonna be a lawsuit. The disappointed party, either Maxxam LLC or the citizens of Campton Hills, will inevitably resort to the courts for redress.

But if I had to make a choice between that Scylla and Charybdis, it would clearly be a citizen lawsuit because they rarely succeed. You certainly can’t say the same thing about a determined developer and FHA filing, however.

Campton Hills already paid the 2013 rehab center folks a cool half million for their City Council’s FHA violations and this one’s gonna be no different. Well…with the exception of this rehab center actually being built.

 

There goes the surplus!

With the number of attorneys on the County Board:

  • Brian Pollock
  • Doug Scheflow
  • John Hoscheit
  • Susan Starrett
  • John Martin
  • Maggie Auger

and a whole separate Board attorney, you’d think that gaggle would have the skills to   avoid lawsuits better than Matt Forte dodges linebackers. But no! Instead, this group actually courts them (pun intended)!

Impending Blackjacks Gentlemen’s Club owner Debra Diaz has already filed a $16 million slam dunk lawsuit against the Board and now we’re going to be on the hook for this one.

Shouldn’t we expect more from our local politicians? Don’t we elect government boards on the basis of their experience and better intelligence? Apparently not, because the Kane County Board is racking up avoidable lawsuits faster that Kanye West can put himself into debt.

Perhaps the Chairman should give Mark Zuckerberg a call.

 

Alas poor Kenny, I knew him!

As if yesterday’s grueling 3.5 hour Development Committee meeting wasn’t bad enough, our favorite court jester, chairman candidate Ken Shepro just had to get in on the act.

SheproAs Maxxam Partners Principal Steven Marco was right smack in the middle of answering committee member questions, Ken sauntered out of the bleachers, commandeered the microphone, and began to make faux legal points.

Methinks he’s watched one too many Perry Mason rerun on ME TV. Committee Chair Kurt Kozjarek quickly shut him down, but isn’t this exactly what we don’t need? A guy who doesn’t even know how to behave at board meetings running them.

Oh! And once again, proving his previous pronouncement problematic, during his brief outburst, Ken referenced Left, Right and You, the radio show to which he never listens. C’mon Ken! Admit it! You have a life-sized poster of me and Larry hanging on your bedroom wall!

Quick Hits

Quick Hits – February 16, 2016

Sorry conservatives! It’s gonna be a liberal court!

SCOTUSI gotta tell you, that race-baiting, homophobic, obtuse, self-indulgent, and beyond egotistical Antonin Scalia, the man who made a mockery of being a Supreme Court Justice, is far more fun in death than he ever was in life.

To wit, sitting back and watching all my conservative friends go bonkers over Scalia’s possible replacement is even more entertaining than watching Eduardo Rafael Cruz take a polygraph test.

Once again, it appears to be up to me to set my sad, confused, and perpetually petrified rightwing brothers and sisters straight. Who said I didn’t have a heart?

  1. Barack Obama will not be appointed to the Supreme Court! The only President who ever pulled that off, William Howard Taft, was appointed eight long years later after heavily lobbying for the position. Barack Obama didn’t destroy the country, he didn’t take your guns, he didn’t steal your girlfriend, and he has no interest in serving on the Supreme Court because which would be a huge salary cut for a retired President. Sheesh! You’d think after eight reasonable years, y’all wouldn’t be afraid of the black guy anymore.
  1. It doesn’t matter if the GOP does what they do best – delay and obstruct – because there’s no way a Republican wins the White House in 2016. Women won’t vote for Donald Trump or Eduardo Cruz and those two circus clowns are doing a bang up job of destroying Marco Rubio, the only one who could actually win. If the President doesn’t get his appointee, then Hillary or Bernie will!
  1. With the death of Scalia, the Supreme Court is officially liberal and business will go on as usual. If you really think there’s suddenly going to be a slew of 4 – 4 votes, you’re dreaming. Delaying this appointment won’t matter.
  1. There is absolutely no precedent for a final year president not making a SCOTUS choice. If Ronald Reagan could do it, so can Barack Obama.
  1. Oh! And the Clintons didn’t have Scalia killed either. If that were their modus operandi then Monica Lewinsky would’ve disappeared a long time ago.

So please get a grip. Despite Republicans’ best obstructive and whining efforts, we’re gonna have a liberal Supreme Court.

 

The other side of Frank Mautino

Shortly after running Friday’s Quick Hits, a good friend and great source took me to task for repeating the rumors regarding our besieged Illinois Auditor General. This gentleman, who’s known Mr. Mautino for years, hypothesized:

  1. The size of his former State Rep district means his vehicular expenses were not out of line.
  1. Mautino was the victim of an administrative assistant and/or campaign treasurer who was/were prone to some of the sloppiest record keeping I’ve ever seen.
  1. The Auditor’s spokesperson is doing an absolutely abysmal job of getting out in front of this one.
  1. The only folks reporting this story are the Edgar County Watchdogs or, as I like to call them, the Edgar County Loons, who have no clue when it comes to well…anything, especially good journalism.

MautinoIf points one through three turn out to be true, then Mautino is prone to the kind of bad luck that’d make a Bernie Sanders Iowa Caucus coin flipping contest look a lot less fixed. So is that sad 1 through 3 scenario possible? Sure! But if it does turn out to be the case, I wouldn’t recommend standing within 20 yards of Frank on a cloudy day.

But there is something to number four. The Loons are about to be on the hook for $1,050,000 in damages for libeling a Kane County printer and, given their ongoing pronouncements, they still haven’t figured out that you can’t call people “criminals” without due cause.

Worse yet, their “investigative” reporting technique generally consists of looking for inane technicalities that almost always collapse under the slightest scrutiny. I hear some real reporters are looking into this one so let’s reserve judgment till then.

 

The Examiner behaves not unlike a Dyson vacuum cleaner

Though I certainly take issue with the “we don’t have to live up to our own standard” mentality that plagues the Daily Herald and Courier-News these days, at least they make an effort to appear equitable. Meanwhile, the Examiner has dispensed with all such pretense.

Examiner

And the best evidence of their propaganda-ish proclivities are the subtle workings of “reporter” Seth Somebody who clearly graduated from Joe’s School of Motorcycle Repair and Weekend Journalism. I hear their main campus is somewhere in a garage behind Chicago Street.

So our enterprising Leni Reifenstahl (look it up) recently sent a series of questions to the non-loon U-46 School Board members and it was even more entertaining than listening to Donald Trump expound on the merit of Megyn Kelly.

Aint’ it funny how Board Member Jeanette Ward is always the victim. Poor Saint Jeanette! Just like Peter Parker, so misunderstood. Being a conservative certainly means everyone else having to say they’re sorry.

Ah well! What should anyone expect from a publication that printed U-46 passwords, wouldn’t know the truth if it bit ‘em in the butt, and, in the ‘90s, sent unaccompanied and unpaid 12 year-old delivery girls to collect money from random Streamwood residents for a paper they didn’t want.

Nothing could possibly go wrong with that now, could it?

As my mother used to say, if you’re unfortunate enough to read anything in the Examiner, consider the source.

Quick Hits

Quick Hits – February 15, 2016

In observance of Presidents’ Day, content will be a bit lighter this morning. But to make up for that, I firmly believe that you’ll enjoy my Ode to KDOT Snow Removal:

When the winds whisk in the snow
And you’ve got somewhere to go
There’s one thing that I know
KDOT steals the snow removal show

While the folks in Batavia wait
And Geneva’s always late
Please let me set you straight
KDOT always pulls their weight

You can count on Carl Schoedel
Because those KDOT folks are able
To send the snow where it’s unable
To make your travel time unstable

Holy crap! I shoulda been a poet!

KDOT

This is the February 15, 2016 edition of Left, Right and You!

 

Larry and I want to thank former Kane County Chief Judge Keith Brown and Maxxam Partners principal Steven Marco for participating in today’s show. As you already know, Maxxam is trying to bring a high-end rehab center into the County just outside Campton Hills.

We at Left, Right and You would encourage all of those fine yet fearful Campton Hillians to listen to the show and, armed with the facts presented, only then make a judgement as to whether this rehab center will be a problem.

Larry will be back on Thursday! Until then!

Keith and Jeff