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  • US Government is Now the New Illinois

    Posted by Carl from Chicago on February 26th, 2009 (All posts by )

    A while back before the election I wrote a depressingly omniscient post about the future of the US government after the Presidential election and the fact that it would look like Illinois. In Illinois the Democrats run the executive position (governor) and both state houses, and most of the big cities (Chicago) to boot. The post was called “As Illinois Goes, So Goes the Nation

    In this post I noted that in Illinois the Democrats were split as follows:

    The Democrats here generally split into two camps:

    1) Stone-cold redistributionists – these individuals view all people as individuals to be taxed virtually to the brink of death to fund various state schemes
    2) Let’s not kill the golden goose – the rest of the Democrats fall into this camp, noting that if you tax everyone to death, they will leave, and there will be no money to fund government programs. Note that they aren’t per-se against these massive programs, they are just being pragmatic in how much they can extract from you before you expire, like a bookie’s enforcer deciding just to break your leg instead of killing you to keep you paying up

    I was hoping that some Democrats would emerge as category #2 although I didn’t know of anyone who might fit the bill. Unfortunately the executive branch has come out strongly as type #1, stone cold redistributionists, as summarized below in this ABC News article:

    President Obama’s $3.5 trillion budget proposal, the largest in history, presents a dramatic break from policy and a shift in governmental priorities. The administration is attempting to redirect vast sums of money from businesses and wealthier individuals to those with lower incomes and enact ambitious and costly new programs for energy, education and health care.

    Only in the senate do we have any hope, and this is just a slight hope, of keeping the pace of the runaway spending train below the absolute top speed possible.

    The only positive point out of this entire morass is that at least Republicans are starting to act like Republicans, instead of closet Democrats, and found their spine. I’d much rather vote for a party that is willing to go down with the ship than be craven and flit in the wind with the latest trends. The sorriest one of those was Governor Ryan of Illinois, currently incarcerated, who let everyone off death row and behaved like the wimpiest Democrat ever.

     

    10 Responses to “US Government is Now the New Illinois”

    1. boqueronman Says:

      I’m somewhat surprised that there are no comments on this one. I agree wholeheartedly that what we are, and will, see from Obama and crew is the federalization of Illinois-Chicago machine politics. Obviously, we are at the beginning of the campaign, which means the distribution of power and money to Democrat constituencies. To understand the dynamics and prepare a defense it is necessary to study the enemy. Patton, at least according to the movie, credited his success in North Africa to having read Rommel’s published works. I have been reading up on FDR and the Great Depression. I have not as yet identified any articles or books that appear compelling as studies of the inner workings of Illinois-Chicago politics. Do you have any suggestions for essential reading?

    2. Carl from Chicago Says:

      I would recommend “Boss” by Mike Royko for the history of “the machine”.

      The way to stay current with the ever murkier brand of Illinois Politics is to read John Kass of the Chicago Tribune – he does a great job and in fact I sometimes worry that he’ll get “whacked” for speaking out. Here is a link to his columns

      http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/columnists/chi-johnkass,0,5724822.columnist

    3. boqueronman Says:

      Thanks, Carl. I’ll visit Amazon and the Chicago Tribune.

    4. onparkstreet Says:

      Ugh, this is what I was afraid of too. If he’s such a reformer, why didn’t it show in his time in Illinois? Too common sense a point for this past election, I suppose.

      My inner ring Chicago suburb is nuts. First, they bought property in the downtown in order to ‘develop’ it. They kinda shoved out the mom and pops or they left because taxes and dealing with the village was a pain. Now, our downtown is one empty building after the other and they are using that as an excuse to give 11-12 million dollars of taxpayer money to a developer to build a hotel and condos. We have many empty condos already in the downtown area.

      The geniuses in local government clain that over the next twenty years we will get 20 million back and over 200 jobs. And, yet, even if that highly unlikely rosy scenario happens, what do you want to bet taxes keep going up?

      Ugh, ugh, ugh. I write, like, a letter a week to the local paper. I will probably be thrown out of the town! (I’d like to go to the village hall meetings but the sneaky jerks make it hard to do, the timings are random and hard to get to).

    5. Dan from Madison Says:

      I, for one, am surprised that Chicago itself isn’t one giant Mad Max Thunderdome city by now. Crumbling infrastructure, crappy schools, filth, noise. The taxes and business climate are literally insane, and if you don’t have a circle of the right friends you and/or your business dreams are meat. Why don’t people just leave? I understand there is a lot to do – I partake of the entertainment scene myself there a few times a year. I guess I don’t know what it takes to make people move out of there. There must be a lot of great jobs left, I guess.

    6. Jonathan Says:

      Dan,

      Chicago like NYC survives because for the most productive people the network benefits of doing business there far outweigh the dead-weight load of taxation, regulation, crime, corruption and municipal incompetence. Also, people have a high threshold for leaving the places where most of their families live.

    7. Jonathan Says:

      National politics is now controlled by Democratic machines, both Obama’s and Pelosi’s. They know what they are doing. In this regard it is naive to think that there is any contradiction between Obama’s behavior and his values.

    8. bustoff Says:

      Can $6 an hour parking meters be far behind?

    9. Anonymous Says:

      This post has been linked for the HOT5 Daily 2/287/2009, at The Unreligious Right

    10. Hcklebuck Says:

      I’ve been portending the view of IL as model for a Dem controlled nation for some time and have been chagrined at how it has all worked out. I’m an atty who limits his practice to the defense side of workers’ compensation claims in IL. We have for years been gradually weighted down with an always increasing burden on IL business – which has resulted in business flight, primarily to IN. My business clients ask when the State will see the goose is being slowly strangled. My stock response is that the State views all of us and particularly any business enterprise as an unlimited source of money, and nothing else. Having no experience themselves outside of the public trough, they are literally unable to see the looming, inevitable result.