Nearly 60% of Rahm Emmanuel's donors received "contracts…business permits or some other tangible benefit." http://t.co/d0udYIFZKF
— AlterNet (@AlterNet) April 6, 2015
Rahm's message to Chicago business is like the old bumpersticker: "Ass, gas or grass — nobody rides free" RE https://t.co/60bKoBX4Cc
— Billmon (@billmon1) April 6, 2015
Edward McClellan, at Slate, reports that “Rahm Emanuel Has Made Chicago a Worse Place to Live“:
… Emanuel’s mayoralty may look like a success. And that may be the case if you spend most of your time in City Hall, or even downtown. But most Chicagoans never visit City Hall, and they don’t live downtown. They spend their days in Auburn Gresham, Norwood Park, Hegewisch, or Avondale—the self-contained neighborhoods that make Chicago feel more like a confederation of 50 wards than a single city. And in most of those places, life has become more of a hassle. The libraries are open only half a day on Mondays. (And that’s a compromise after the mayor initially closed them all day.) Speed cameras spit out $35 tickets for going 36 miles an hour in a 30 zone. In the poor neighborhoods where Emanuel closed 50 schools, the children walk farther every morning and afternoon, often crossing gang boundary lines. Water rates have nearly doubled.
These may sound like petty aggravations, but they eventually add up to the question Do I really want to keep putting up with this? Between July 2013 and July 2014, Illinois lost 10,000 residents, in its first population drop since the 1980s—an indication that the state and presumably the city have become less livable…
… Chicago has become a city for wealthy people and a city for poor people—people who can afford traffic tickets and people who can’t afford cars, with fewer and fewer left in between.
As Richard C. Longworth points out in his book Caught in the Middle: America’s Heartland in the Age of Globalism, Chicago has developed an hourglass social structure, divided between global citizens—“hardworking, well educated, well paid, well traveled”—and global servants, who park their cars, bus their tables, and walk their dogs…
Emanuel did not create this divided city, but his mayoralty is a product of it, and he has an interest in perpetuating it, because the global citizens vote for him and fund his campaigns. The most extraordinary finding of the 2010 census was that the fastest-growing neighborhood in Chicago was the Loop, which has a median household income of $93,745. In the first round of the election, on Feb. 24, Emanuel made his best showing there, winning 73.2 percent of the vote in the Loop-based 42nd Ward. Billionaire hedge fund manager and 42nd Ward resident Ken Griffin, the richest man in Illinois, has donated $750,000 to Emanuel during the runoff. As a graduate of an elite suburban high school who made his career in Washington, D.C., then settled in the city to enjoy its cultural amenities, Emanuel embodies Global Chicago…
It’s the Golden Rule — them that has the gold, makes the rules!
Apart from watching the hourglass, what’s on the agenda for the evening?