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The [Thursday] Papers

Today's political commentary:

Note: Bill Daley is Chris Kennedy's finance chair.

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Of course, I want change too - my kind of change!

What these candidates are really selling isn't change at all, of course. It would be lot more honest if they just said, "I pretty much like things the way they are! Just a few tweaks, put a personal stamp on things. For example, I like birds! So more money for bird stuff."

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There are a few candidates - incumbents, more like - who have run on the status quo. Richard M. Daley ran on "More Daley Stuff!"

In that sense, Rahm will run again on "More Rahm Stuff (But With More Pretend Listening)!"

Then again, Rahm has been running from Day One on a more technocratic and less hacky status quo shrouded in the rhetoric of change but substantively undifferent from what came before.

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Toni Preckwinkle is running for re-election on her record of competency, which actually makes her a change candidate given the history of the office.

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Aldermanic candidates and incumbents in Chicago don't run on change/same but on for mayor/against mayor, though which one they choose can depend on their sense of the voters' mood.

But for the most part, change (and its corollary, reform) has been in for a very long time. Democrats in some districts with the exact same records as Machine hacks wear the mantle of reform for branding purposes, and are often treated by the media as "good guy" pols, but they aren't substantively different from their hoarier colleagues.

Even Chuy Garcia put his arm around Luis Gutierrez, just as Preckwinkle continues to bless Joe Berrios and Barack Obama endorsed Daley (and in fact, the Machine candidate every single time over the reform candidate) and stocked his presidential administration with the likes of Rahm, Bill Daley and Combine Republican Ray LaHood.

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Even the incumbent Republican governor is running on a change platform. And so is his primary opponent!

The ballot is stocked with change candidates - every single one of 'em!

But that's not the same as a ballot stocked with real change. You're really choosing between Democratic and Republican versions of the status quo.

That's not to say there wouldn't be a real difference between, say, a Pritzker governorship and four more years of Bruce Rauner; there would be! Just like there'd be a real difference between a Hillary Clinton presidency and what we have now.

But, Donald Trump notwithstanding, the underlying structures don't tend to change, so we have the same narrow debates every election and the system is ultimately preserved.

To wit:

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That's not to say there hasn't been progress, though maybe not as much as we think:

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Perhaps what real change we have seen has come from the ground up, forcing "leaders" to give only as much ground as politically required.

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Possibly related:

Just add this to the list of inequities documented in recent years ("___ While Black" including walking).

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Also possibly related:

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Meanwhile . . .

Reminder: Jeff Bezos is the world's richest man. Chicago has offered Amazon more than $2 billion in taxpayer subsidies to locate their "second headquarters" here.

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And:

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Oh, and President Change needs a reported $175 million in taxpayer-funded roadwork for his "library" but refuses to sign a Community Benefits Agreement (while chuckling that rents will go up "a little" around Jackson Park but dislocated residents are out of luck because, oh well!).

And oh well again! One man's egoistic legacy project trumps public land.

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That huge O'Hare airport expansion? Just think if even a slice of that kind of dough was sunk into a South Suburban airport. Talk about a game-changer.

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That's enough for now. Methinks I hear an homage to Bob Stinson right out of the gate on today's Now Playing selection:

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On This Day In . . .

2015: The Beachwood Radio Hour #46: Explaining Chicago's Black Site.

Homan Square for Dummies.

THIS IS PRETTY GREAT, PEOPLE, GIVE IT A LISTEN!

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2016: Dear Hollywood: Chicago Investigations That Should Be Made Into Movies Ala Spotlight.

RATED F for FUNNY.

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ChicagoGram

COOL!

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ChicagoTube

Really cool stuff from the UIC Library's Special Collections.

WOW!

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BeachBook

Gibson's Failed Modernist Experiment: The Origins Of The Flying V.

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Google Blocks The Sex Pistols, Guns N' Roses.

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The Warriors' 70-Year-Old Truth Teller Is Former Bulls Assistant Coach Ron Adams.

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How Corporate America Is Artificially Suppressing Wages.

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TweetWood
A sampling.

So 43 percent remain unconvinced - and half of those are still hoping it's true.

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The Beachwood Tronc Line: Change agent.



Permalink

Posted on March 1, 2018


MUSIC - The Week In Chicago Rock.
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POLITICS - Border Infants Called To Testify.
SPORTS - Beachwood Sports Radio: Jabari Parker Grinds Our Gears.

BOOKS - Green Books Are Back.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Pilcher Park Now A Nature Reserve.


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