Monday, March 9, 2009

Rockford's city fathers to perform coathanger-abortion of employees - SuperBlock nowhere to be found

I'm still nursing a state-of-the-city-hangover, but as those of us with "true grit" will acknowledge, there's no better cure than the hair of the dog that bit you.

It's about 5 a.m. and I'm celebrating - well, the kind of somber celebration one would allow in memory of a friend who's passed -because tonight, the city's alpha males and females will roll in shit when when life as city employees know it will forever be altered as a direct result of wasteful spending while the gettin' was good.

Tonight, the proposed budget comes before the full City Council. City Hall will stink of wet, mangy mutts as the aldermen who've allowed this mess to happen squirm and cower to be thrown a re-election bone. They can blame Morrissey all they want, but remember that they went along with all of it.

Especially considering that Larry's an Independent, you'd expect that Democrats and Republicans would have been doing their homework to keep him honest, but they obviously haven't. As one regular caller to WNTA would say, "Get rid of the bums!"

We're talking about a bunch of political hobbyists who are more concerned about status and throwing their weight around than doing the jobs they're charged with. They share in the blame for the failed expectations of the Morrissey administration, and so do we for that matter.

This mayoral election, despite Morrissey's emphasis on education, will be decided on the issue of public safety. That's what, from the beginning, made Doug Block the front runner to challenge the incumbent.

John Harmon is not a factor in the race and Jesus Correa just needs to take his egocentric art project back to his bedroom. I think it's fair to say both gentlemen are barely tolerated, even by their friends.

Aldermen have allowed Morrissey to run rampant with development funds, which has effectively raped the general fund to benefit developers who hardly need the breaks. And how is Rockford any better for these "investments?" Nothing I've seen supports the notion that TIF benefits anyone but property mongers.

Instead of taking the mayor to task for misuse of taxpayer dollars, aldermen are going to go along with cuts to the level of service Rockfordians pay too handsomely for - with a real, human cost - just so they can later claim balancing the budget as a victory.

You can't lay all the blame on Larry. Despite failure, at least he tried to do something. I'm beginning to think he might be the best one to get us out of this. It's kinda like how G.W. won re-election on the notion that we shouldn't change commanders-in-chief at wartime. Then again, we were probably wrong in that "choice."

Simply put, if Doug Block thinks he can manage to fill an $8 million budget hole without touching public safety, now's the time to for him to speak up. You can point to Adam Smith-types all you want, but the problem is much bigger than a handful of $100k jobs. Where, Mr. Block, do you propose to pull $8 million from the 30 percent of the city budget not directly attributable to public safety? Do you even recognize how we came to be in this awkward, prone position? Seriously, Dude, I hope you have more to say than, "Protect union jobs."

It's 2009 in Rockford, and it's still appropriate for residents to hang their heads in shame. Next year's looking no better and the Forest City isn't likely to see significant change in the next four years, despite having sons of Illinois in high places nationally. Remember, we're still the people who re-elected Blago, but only because the alternative was that allegedly "medicated nutcase," Judy Baar Topinka.

As my father once quipped, "Rockford is the asshole of Illinois." He was absolutely right then, and it still holds true, unfortunately. Like it or not, of the candidates we have, I think Larry best recognizes Rockford's history of mediocity, which is the first step to at least upgrading Rockford to taint-status.

First things first - the basics. There's some validity - in real dollars - to Larry's priority of decreasing truancy. As he noted during his annual campaign address last week, companies don't choose to locate in communities with great fire departments. They choose to locate in communities where their children can get a decent education. I think it's a crusade that makes sense.

Again, Mr. Block, where do you stand on issues that do not directly involve the unions? What about the rest of Rockford? Gotham City needs a hero. Take the union-cock out of your mouth and spit out a couple solutions. Otherwise, just shut up and go play with Jesus Correa in Prozac-land.


  1. Agreed on the lack of any message from Block,but I believe unless Mayor Lar dumps Adam Smith, Block could win by just keeping his mouth shut...

  2. I have to say Larry may not be the best but he did do some good things for downtown. I remember not to long ago where I had friends come to visit and they made the comment that "They should just board up downtown, it a shit pile". Crime has gone up in the city. Is this because we don't have the police force we need? Is it because the ones we do have aren't doing a great job? Or is it because people are out of work?
    And about Block, I'm not so sure about that guy. During the election I couldn't find ANYTHING about where he stood on issues. But thanks to you tube I didn't find out he knows what a map of Rockford looks like and that he likes the Ice Hog.
    But I agree I'm leaning Larry. He might not be the best pick but as I see it it's the est with what we have at this time.