Thursday, August 09, 2007

Blago Hears a Boo

The big issue in the newspaper and on talk radio today is how people should respond if the governor does indeed participate in the fair parade tonight. The SJ-R favors a silent snub, while Jim Leach is calling out for a chorus of catcalls. I’m still not certain the governor will even show up. I don’t think he wants to risk the publicity should the crowd turn sour, and you have to believe it will.

Laura doesn’t believe the governor will be deterred by a negative reaction, in fact, she suspects he would probably relish it. She may be correct. I could see the governor strutting down 11th Street like one of those WWF villains, occasionally stopping to hold his hand to his ear and then basking in the boos that come cascading down on the parade route. Maybe he’ll even wear pink wrestling tights and a big feather boa, he does seem to fancy himself the gorgeous type.

If the governor wants to maintain the appearance of popularity, I wouldn’t put it past his PR team to round up a few busloads of supporters from up north and plant them along the parade route. Maybe one of them will mistake him for Mayor Daley and then the governor will have a cute story to tell the next time they all get together at the Madigan’s.

We’re probably going to skip the parade this year. Seeing grossly-proportioned kids pounce on scattered candy like they haven’t eaten in weeks tends to make me ill. Actually, it’s their parents fault for allowing them to indulge their feral thirst for sugar so ravenously. As much as my kids like to see high school-aged tuba players sweating profusely and politician smiling profusely, they’ll just have to settle for going to see Shrek the Third and gorging on a silo of popcorn.

If I were to attend the parade and the governor were to pass by, I don’t think that I would boo or otherwise sling barbs, especially if his children were with him. No child should have to see the person they look up to more than anyone else being verbally assaulted.

That said, I don’t recall the governor bringing the kids to the parade in the past; he seemed to make a big deal about running the entire route and his daughters lack the testicularity to keep up. If he does bring them along this year, I can only assume that they are intended to act as a shield to discourage the barrage of insults that state workers had prepared to unfurl. If the governor should stoop to such a tactic, it would be even more despicable than the time he hit Tom Cross on the back with a folding chair when the referee wasn’t looking.

9 comments:

nancy said...

Oh man!! You're not going to be there, sweating it out in front of the alternative lifestyle bar at the maingate??? Not to make you feel guilty or anything, but I've risked life and limb the last 10 or 11 years, standing directly in the parade route to get a nice group shot of all of the cousins at their annual Fair family reunion. For all those years, the angle has had to be wider and wider to include all the kids. I guess this year, without your brood, I can stand a little closer. Shrek sounds good too, though. The pool or the pond.....

JeromeProphet said...

So do you blame Blago for the budget problem?

JP

BlogFreeSpringfield said...

Nancy,

Maybe you can PhotoShop my kids in later. Since none of the bands ever play at our vantage point, the Jesse White Tumblers are the only thing worth seeing anyway.

Jerome,

I don’t blame Blago entirely for the budget mess. But considering that he proposed a budget that was grander in scale than anything he hinted about in his campaign and then did nothing for the next few months to build support among the legislature, then yes I think a good deal of the blame for the overtime has to fall in his lap. Vindictiveness from many other participants is also gumming up the works, but even that is largely the result of Blago’s coarse style and lack of negotiating skills. His disregard for deadlines and other lawful rules of engagement in such matters also isn’t helping things.

They should just hand the keys to the mansion over to Dan Hynes right now.

And what do you think?

Thanks for commenting,
Dan

Yellowdog said...

Where were all the people 8 years ago when I was trumpeting Dan Hynes. He said many years ago that we didnt have the money for all these wishlist items.

He is the one true politician who doesnt act like a politician. I guess we could ruin that by voting him into the governors mansion. But would he use it. Thats a whole other story.

Ogie Ogelthorpe said...

Dan,

The line about Blago's kids not having the testicular fortitude to keep up with him was very good.

This is a very interesting blog in that I despise the Gov to an extreme that is hard to describe. However, to boo the man is just not in my make up. He is after all the Governor and a human being. He is a disgustingly poor politician, not a crack-head burglar and thus deserves at least a crumb of respect.

I had no problem yelling to him during his first or second fair, "welcome to Springfield!" believing that I was original. (What a fool I was) But to boo is just too much. I will boo him at the polls at the next election and pray that others come to their senses and follow suit. Besides, booing him may inflame the Chicago crowd into voting him into a third term.

But I suppose that if I were a State employee who was not getting paid I might have other ideas.

JeromeProphet said...

This won't make me sound like an informed pundit, but I'd have to admit that I don't know who to blame.

There's certainly a downstate versus Chicago thing going on here. Locally, there's a great deal of spin from people with a dagger to sharpen.

If times were good, and the state's coffers full none of this would have ever come up. So I'd first look at the root causes, and ask why is it that the State can't tackle big issues which most people wish it could - without significantly increasing the tax burden?

Maybe we're asking to much of government? I doubt that is the case. So perhaps we should blame the population's unwillingness to support tax increases to pay for more entitlements.

In some cases it can be shown that by spending a bit more we actually save far more. Send a kid to college and keep him out of expensive prisons. Pay for preventative health care, and reduce the cost of reimbursing hospitals for expensive emergency room treatment of those without insurance. Maintain our roads, and save drivers the cost of paying more for new tires, and suspension work. Pay for home care for the elderly and keep them out of expensive state subsidized nursing homes. I could go on, and on, and on.

The problem is that everyone, including ideologues know that good government can work, especially at a local level, but the political process is so corrupted by special interest and politics itself that what good could be done is delayed until it becomes an emergency, or altogether ignored.

I can't blame Blago for being loyal to his Chi town supporters, he needs his base of support.

Is it that he lacks the ability to sell his goals, his agenda, or is it just more difficult to come up with enough pork to pay enough people off to get his proposals through?

In Springfield we now see Republicans who just can't stand a upstate Democrat in the governor's mansion (oops), downstate Democrats who feel he never did enough to help them - especially in compensation for all the lean years, mixed with the upstate vs. downstate thing, and the frightened currently employed but always wary state workers. This mix makes it very hard to actually gage what anyone's booing about.

He's taken state jobs to Chicago, and laid off folk in Springfield - Boo!

We're worried we won't get our paychecks on time - Boo!

He's a damned Democrat, and I got my state job during the Republican hey day - Boo!

He's from Chicago, and he won't even live in Springfield - Boo!

I've tried to get a job with the State when the Republicans were in charge, but never could, and now when the Democrats are in charge they're not hiring - Boo!

My father was laid off at the State - Boo!

My uncle had to retire early from the State - Boo!

What in God's name does any of that have to do with Blago? I don't know. With the money tight, and his desire not to be blamed for increasing taxes there's not much he can do - it's just not like it was in Springfield in the 80's, and 90's - and it may never be again no matter how much booing we do.

JP

Anonymous said...

Once again I agree with you BlogFree! I've lived here my entire life and as an adult have successfully avoided at least 15 Twilight Parades in all their trashy glory. What's so great about standing in the heat to watch tractors and politicians who throw out candy I don't want my kids eating anyway? The only good part of Preview Night is that its free to get into the Fair. Otherwise, its just another small town parade. On the flip side of that the movie is cheap but the price of popcorn at White Oaks rivals that of State Fair food, so you probably aren't getting off cheaper!

Regarding Blago, I'm a state employee who likely isn't going to be paid on the 15th but I don't blame him entirely. Its the legislators fault as much as it is his. They don't want to play nice with each other and don't care who knows it. Now its going to be the state employees and the clients of those services we provide that will suffer. I think its disgustingly amusing how convenient blaming the other side in the media has become for the elected officials in this state. Then again, why would I think IL would be above that?!

Anonymous said...

Hey BlogFree its been awhile since you've posted anything new, so I thought I'd provide a little new info on happenings out at the Fair. I have a friend who's "volunteering" at the Gov's Tent and said that the last few days have been BRUTAL. Fair-goers coming in and verbally accosting them, looking to have them pass messages on to the Gov, asking questions about the budget and when they'll be paid, etc... My friend was only there a few hours yesterday and never felt so embarassed to be a state employee representing our government. I don't know what other volunteers have experienced, but clearly the public isn't happy. Way to go State of IL!

BLT

BlogFreeSpringfield said...

Anon,

I'm not surprised by the negative comment at the governor's tent. Today is Democrats Day and it would be interesting to see if there are any anti-gov protestors out in mass. Unfortunately, I can't attend. If you get any more reports from friends, please post them here if you get a chance.

Thanks for commenting,
Dan