Category Archives: richard daley

I THINK … Mayor Daley should be made to to write the Second Amendment on a blackboard 100 times, so he gets it.

Chicago Mayor Richard Daley is again showing that the “Chicago Way” is his way only. He will not be dissuaded from the imposition of his edicts by the law, the Supreme Court, the will of the people, American traditions, the U.S. Constitution or common sense.

Following the rejection of the Chicago gun ban on Constitutional grounds, Daley has forced the passage of a series of Draconian regulations that effectively make gun ownership in Chicago a meaningless right. In all probability, most of the new law will be stricken again by the Supreme Court, but only after years of meandering through lower court decisions.

In what can only be described as a fit of civic petulance worthy of any despot, Daley will cause Chicago to endure years of uncertainty, and millions of dollars in legal fees – which the Mayor will gladly dole out to his lawyer friends. In fact, this law is just another form of creative patronage.

It is also another example of Daley’s willingness to add more needless costs on the already reeling city. It should not go without notice that Hizzoner does not mind spending lavishly in pursuit of his personal agenda, even as funding for critical services is evaporating.

And to the central issue, what has all his gun control efforts accomplished? The gang bangers and the crooks remain immune to the Mayor’s laws, killing hundreds of his constituents each year. Virtually ever week some teenager is gunned down by “accident” – the victim of misidentification or a stray round.

In the name of public safety, Daley disarms the innocent for the benefit of the criminals. Perhaps crime control should have priority over gun control. Just maybe, with an armed public, we would have more dead crooks than vulnerable victims.

If a man breaks into a home to rape a woman, and she blows him to his eternal judgment, it seems to me society is the beneficiary. At least it takes some pressure of the judicial docket. I am all for making crime a high risk business.

The Mayor creates criminals out of people who are not – and in the process he sends the innocent to jail while those who commit real crimes roam the streets.

Of course, this makes no difference to the rubber stamp Chicago City Council, which passed his hand scribbled ordinance without so much as a public hearing. In a move a unfathomable hypocrisy, the good alderpersons of Chicago continue to exempt themselves from Daley’s gun restrictions. As part of the government elite, their safety is paramount – and how could Daley get their votes if he did not accede to the worthiness of their exception.

Maybe there was time that the experiment in gun control was warranted as an untested theory. But, after the generational failure of feel good gun laws, Daley loses the benefit of the doubt. He is just wrong in this.

>OBSERVATION: Looking forward to the Chicago Olympics

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Not considering the election of Barack Obama as President of the United States, I felt pretty safe in predicting early on that Chicago will not get awarded the 2016 Olympics. My! My! How things can change.

If President Obama puts in a major effort, as he said he would and I have no doubt he will, then the odds change dramatically. When this decision is made next year, Obama will be at the peak of popularity as an international leader and personality. Other heads-of-state, who would have no reason to support the American bid under war-monger Bush or his look-alike successor, can be persuaded to gain points with the new leader of the free world by supporting the Olympic bid through their representative on the International Olympic Committee (IOC).

With ties to Africa, Asia and the Middle East, Obama is arguably the most international President we have since our English-bred founders. Most certainly, a number of national representatives on the liberal leaning IOC will find it appealing to indirectly endorse the election of America’s first African-American (with an Arabic name, no less) to hold the Oval Office. The OIC will like the image of President Barack Obama cutting the ribbon at the opening ceremonies.

Obama helps the Chicago bid in other ways. Chicago’s shortcomings in infrastructure will be quickly corrected by an infusion of federal dollars. If Obama removes U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, the rising tide of indictments would likely crest before reaching the fifth floor of City Hall. Political leadership in Chicago will again be “stable.”

While any President may want the Olympics, Obama has the strongest motivation to put this higher up on his priority list. No only will he be lobbying on behalf of his country, but for the benefit of his home town – and the political machine that got him where he is today.

Another Obama advantage is taming the civic wolves. A lot of civic organizations, largely minority groups led by local community organizers, have already fired warnings across the bow of the local Olympic support committee. Civil unrest is never attractive to the IOC. Once their beloved Obama endorses the plan, these voices of opposition will fall silent.

From no chance, Obama, in my view, has transformed Chicago into the city to beat for the Olympics.

>REACT: Crime and punishment, Chicago style.

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I suspect Chicago Mayor Richard Daley is steaming, as only he can. Seems that the streets of his kingdom have become significantly less safe. Crime has “spiked,” as they say. This means the gang bangers, robbers and rapists are running amok. Public school students are being gunned down at a rate of one a week.

It is sooooo bad that our the ever-grandstanding Governor Rod Blagojevich — sensing a headline — proposed sending in the National Guard and helicopters to police the streets of Chicago, calling the Mayor’s turf “out of control.” Ouch! Double ouch!!

Of course, the Governor got his headline — in fact the entire cover of the Chicago Sun-Times with him caricatured as the quintessential cowboy sheriff. I only hope there were no City Hall staffers within paperweight distance when the morning paper hit the Mayor’s desk.

Already, the new police superintendent, Jody Weis (left), had been brought to the Mayor’s fifth floor City Hall office for a private (leaked to the media) dressing down. He was then dragged before the entire city council for a more public flogging. Maybe the top cop will be the next Daleyite to be tossed under the bus to protect Hizzonor from blame.

Much of the Mayor’s angst has to do with the Olympics. Getting a gold medal for crime is not the way to impress the International Olympic Committee.

In response to the crime wave, Daley resurrects his harangue about gun control. Somehow he cannot get it through his stubborn skull that his version of gun control is not the answer. Has not worked. Will not work. In fact, it may be a part of the problem.

For God sake, there is a total ban on gun ownership in Chicago, except for alderman and criminals. (Am I repeating myself here?) What more can you do? Fortunately, the U.S. Supreme Court may force the city to restore the constitutional right of self protection in the City of Chicago, where police protection is less than assuring. Repealing the gun ban could do more to reduce crime (and the number of criminals) than wimpy regulation and outraged pronouncements.

Daley is also offering a bounty for guns turned into the city — for pounding into plow shares, I assume. This effort brought in more than 6000 guns in the past (about 10 plow shares worth). But what was he actually gotten off the streets? Broken guns, guns owned by honest citizens who never harmed a soul, stolen guns (yeah, people actually committing a crime to get the bounty), BB and pellet guns and even toy guns. As far as can be determined, it does not appear that the violent crooks (currently busy raising the crime stats) surrendered a single gun.

This year, the program is not going so well. I think it is possible that in view of the Supreme Court decision and the rise in Chicago crime, the people are hanging on to their weapons.

Daley has not figured out that if you cannot disarm the criminals, there is no benefit to disarming the God-fearing public. Maybe if the public had guns, the Governor would not need to send in reinforcements.

>REACT: Daley saves the day … for a change

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In the case of the “pate de foie graz ban bungle” it took Chicago Mayor Rich Daley almost a year to knock out the “city’s silliest ordinance,” as he called it.

Well, Hizzonor was not about to have to wait another year to keep his “kids” in the City Council from another silly action. This time the Mayor stepped in.

Just about the time the Council was to vote to order the White House not to invade Iran (a truly silly thing, to be sure), the Mayor politely asked them refrain from passing the legislation.

Of course, even a polite request will get immediate obedience from the submissive aldermen. They well know that if you reject even the gentlest suggestion from Hizzonor, you will be tossed under the bus – and the Mayor has lots of buses.

He said he was concerned that such a resolution would hurt the presidential candidacy of favorite son Barak Obama. He does not want to upset the first time ever the Chicago political machine will get its own president. I mean … they have had several governors and a few senators rise from the ranks of the Chicago machine, but never a president.

This is real important, too. Everyone knows that the U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald has the Mayor’s brow in the prosecutorial crosshairs. Despite his promise to keep Fitzgerald, you can bet that in one of his first acts a President, Obama will sit with Illinois Senator Dick Durbin to pick a replacement – some one not so … ah … aggressive? Someone more inclined to restore the tradition of “selective prosecution.” <– Meaning no machine pinky rings. I am not sure if the Mayor’s reason for opposing the ban is sincere, or just an excuse. Not sure how the resolution would hurt the campaign, especially since Obama is more of an appeasement dove than a militant hawk.

My suspicion is that the Mayor is kyboshing the ban because it really is silly AND because it is really a public relationship attack on President George Bush. Remember, Daley and Bush are buds. And until he surrenders the Oval Office, good ole pal George has the power of the pardon. In the spirit of Illinois’ unique brand of bipartisanship, Daley is already lobbying for clemency for the currently incarcerated George Ryan. Since springing Ryan from the hoosgow would be an incredibly bad and stupid thing, I say there is at least a 50/50 chance Bush will do it.

Whatever his motive, Delay has ended two Council sillinesses in one week. While I deplore the autocratic process, at least this time the Mayor really did save the “kids” from more silly mischief.