Quick Hits – March 7, 2017

The Tribune agrees with Jeff Ward!

And it’s about time too! On Wednesday, the Tribune Editorial board took Governor Rauner to task for pulling the rug out from under the grand budget compromise yet again. Some assemblymen told me even those senate Republicans were starting to feel like Charlie Brown falling for Lucy’s football con one more time.

Rauner 5

My favorite parts of the editorial are:

  • Republicans derailed the package last week. This is theirs to fix.
  • The fragile budget compromise in the Senate, which includes a dozen bills strung together and an income tax hike, collapsed when Republican senators backed away. They abandoned their leader, Sen. Christine Radogno…
  • Republicans who supported the compromise were threatened with potential primary opponents in 2018, a strong-arm tactic not unlike those employed by House Speaker Michael Madigan.
  • It’s the circular dysfunction of a small-D democratic government in Illinois: The self-serving calculus of re-election always seems to eclipse attempts at problem-solving. This time, it was Republicans playing on clout, threats and leverage.

Coming from the just short of right-wing Chicago Tribune, those statements make me almost as giddy as a photograph in which State Rep Anna Moeller isn’t the shortest one.

So now, the Sun-Times, Crain’s Chicago Business, and the Tribune have either unendorsed Governor Rauner or excoriated him for his vast political immaturity and utter incapacity to compromise.

And I thought it was kinda tough being me!

Folks! This is what happens when you elect non-politicians to major offices.


There must be no mirrors in the Rauner household

Just when you thought the pot couldn’t get any blacker, today, Governor Rauner sued Comptroller Susana Mendoza for failing to understand that she’s not supposed to apply the same tactics he does. The nerve of that woman!

In response to the Governor’s budgetary stonewalling, Ms. Mendoza has:

  • Cut hardship payments to the Department of Aging
  • Delayed vendor payments to the Department of Health and Family Services
  • Delayed vendor payments to the Department of Corrections
  • Refused to process the payroll for 600 state employees

Susana Mendoza

The Governor filed the suit in St. Claire County to force the Comptroller to abide by a 2015 court order stipulating that state employees must be paid.

But then, in a case of “unmitigated gall,” as my sainted mother would’ve said, Rauner also claimed that Mendoza’s boundless audacity was “hurting social services.” I brought my mother into this one because Diana Rauner’s social service agency has already sued her husband twice for the state’s failure to remit payments in a timely manner.

Mendoza said the real problem is she wants to use the state’s revolving fund to cut those paychecks, just like former Comptroller Leslie Munger did. She added, “Now Governor Rauner suddenly wants to hoard those funds which he has tellingly renamed ‘government shutdown prevention funds’ and instead raid the state’s General Revenue Fund, which would take critical funds away from nursing homes, hospice care and care for the disabled.”

All I can say is “You go girl!”

This one is bound to get much more interesting.


Could the alt-right be right?

There I was, staring in the bathroom mirror, wondering how the hell I got this old, when my wife walked in and asked which of the pendants she was holding against her shirt was the better match. After about 30 seconds of deliberation, I pointed to the one on the left.

She asked me, “Why that one?” and I pointed out that the brass color went better with her mid-green shirt, the pendant’s shape flowed better into that top, and it didn’t dominate the ensemble like the shiny silver one would.

As she happily walked out, I suddenly said, “Holy crap – I’m gay!” Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

So I checked out that very possibility with good friend and Aurora Police Chief Kristen Ziman, who assured me that, by itself, the capacity to quickly coordinate a woman’s outfit is not nearly enough evidence to make one consider a shift in their sexuality.

So I’m good for now. But if I start looking for bed ruffles at Kohl’s and buying throw pillows from Target, Larry Jones better be a lot more careful when we’re alone in that small WRMN studio.

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