Want to be mayor?
By the end of the year there will be close to 1,000 candidates for Mayor in Chicago. Among the notables are that Taxwinkle lady, the Irish guy whose brother and papa were once The Boss, maybe Chuy, the Irish cop, the current comptroller, ex-school official, some alderman types, some nobodies, and of course that nice African American man handing out hundreds and thousands of dollars to poor people. I’d vote for him. At least we know he probably won’t be on the take, a thief, or crooked.
But maybe I’ll just vote for Pedro.
You would think that with all the strife, the murders, the pension issues, the murders, the corruption, the murders, the violence-plagued hoods, the murders, the pissed off cops, the murders, CPS, the murders, and of course the murders, who the heck would want this job?
Apparently a lot of power-hungry egotistical folks who forever feed off the public trough, that’s who.
Many of us do not have a good opinion of most mayors. There are a few reasons, like threatening behavior to employees, especially during contract bargaining. Union busting tactics are common. So is throwing cops under the bus when there is political strife. Some have their hands out for freebies, some like to imbibe, bringing elements of disgrace to their office. They build up massive campaign funds, putting the squeeze on sycophants and businesses.
One exception, however, was the late mayor of Naperville, who as a cheerleader of his city worked for less, did not amass a huge campaign fund, and was a kind, religious man as his tributes alluded to. Another mayor south of Naperville has a much different style of governing.
Most fall somewhere in between these descriptions, but I have yet to see the loyalty to their employees, especially police officers.
But what do I know? Maybe there are more than a few who are not bugiardi” as we say in Italian (liars). Maybe there are some that are not vigliacco (yellow bellied) or even ubriaco (drunk).
But one thing for sure, they do think they are beyond reproach and they run the world. Need proof? Our favorite (kidding) mayor, Rahm, is going to write a book. It will be called Why Mayors Run the World. I am not making this up.
Of course he will write how great they are, probably ignoring all kinds of dysfunctions and praising their ability to change a city dramatically. (And not always for the better.) Like having a gross amount of murders and attempted murders.
Yes, they are the best because Rahm is going to say so. Do your own research and see. But is there something noble to have such a variety of characters vying for one job to rule the city?
I think quite possibly it’s for per un pugno di dollari, except for the guy who actually hands out his money. He doesn’t need it.
Vita é bella.
Who knew it would come to this? I guess it’s naïve to think it wouldn’t. It’s been going off and on for quite a while, especially with the dipshits at the Westboro Baptist Church. They protested by yelling and carrying signs denigrating fallen soldiers at their own funerals because God allegedly hates homosexuals. What that has to do with deceased soldiers — your guess is as good as mine.
And now we had the dual funerals of John McCain and Aretha Franklin. True to form, at McCain’s funeral, there were many moments of Trump bashing and the press played into it strongly. Then Aretha, in her six, or was it nine-hour funeral had Sharpton and Jesse holding hands as the Trump bashing continued with Al leading the way.
Song, dance, and politics. Was that the way to honor her? Maybe two out of three. Then we saw a past U.S. president obviously ogling a young singer, who was later groped by a pastor, who said her name sounded like a menu item at Taco Bell. Funny, huh? I think not, but it probably had a polarizing effect on some Latinas.
When another pastor offered his criticism of the Black Lives Matter group, fatherless children, and black on black crime, he was, of course, trolled and belittled on Twitter. What he said made sense, but it didn’t sit well with the haters.
I didn’t watch any of it as I sort of knew there would be loads of disrespect for our president. I would object to a funeral being a forum of belittling any president, not just the current one. I could only read about it. That was more than enough.
Then there was Mollie Tibbets. The young, vibrant 20-year old woman abducted and stabbed to death in Iowa for the crime of jogging down the highway.
Then almost immediately the haters on both sides of the aisle did their best to politicize her murder, further polarizing the citizens and only adding more grief to her loved ones. Her father had to put out a statement, telling the politicos and the press to not politicize his daughter.
I doubt either one cared or listened. Vita é bella.
What gang affiliation?
This is how seriously Chicago takes the gang violence. After a nearly 70+ shootings with 12 killings on one recent weekend and continuing murders, another cry for help went out from community activists.
And with all the finger pointing and blame, the press, citizens, and activists want something done — especially to the racist cops and police departments they accuse of all kinds of misconduct.
Chicago, like many departments, have a gang database which identifies all the thugs, purported thugs, and potential killers, as well as being able to predict who may be on the “hit list” for the next killer.
Thirty-three thousand juveniles arrested over the last two decades have been identified as gangbangers, along with countless adults. It’s an important tool in fighting gang violence in a city overrun by it.
Now I don’t have to tell you what gangs do besides killing each other (just watch the Sopranos). Gangs are involved in a myriad other illegal and harmful activities. But the press and others, especially attorneys for the MacArthur Justice Center, filed a class action lawsuit against Chicago, stating “We don’t think there is a need for gang intelligence on this scale.”
Others state the database is racially skewed. I guess since the Mafia is virtually dead that means there are few Italians or white folks in gangs nowadays.
Hey, the “Outfit” had their day and blew it! You don’t think Chicago PD or the FBI had databases on Murray “the Camel” Humphreys, or Joe “No Nose” or “Big Tuna”? Of course they did. Police track the bad guys. It isn’t rocket science.
Others say the databases point to the risk for youths who could wind up permanently labeled a gangbanger... (and this is my favorite quote ever) for an impulsive decision. Oh my, yes. An impulsive decision to shoot an 11-year old in the face while in a viaduct or playing in the park.
That’s what this has become. A press who is more than willing to demonize everything cops do. We can’t help people unless they want to be helped, and the people running the show are cowards and bow to the fanatics and PC culture because it’s all about votes. And the carnage continues.
Vita é bella.
And the answer is?
To the continuing carnage in Chicago and the never-ending issue that it’s the cops’ fault because there is no trust in the community. That, however, seems to be just a talking point of the race baiters, cop haters, and the news media that really don’t like you, either.
Actually you can add the prosecutors to that list. Nothing I have seen from them can change my jaded mind.
It’s not just a Chicago problem, although everything is obviously exacerbated in this city. Yes, there are a few bad cops in our profession (as in any profession). Policing is a microcosm of society but to continue to blame police for the never-ending violence is ridiculous.
And police involved in violent confrontations would be minimized if people comply, don’t carry or use unlicensed weapons, don’t commit crimes, or run.
Running, just like with bears and mountain lions, can capture the interest of any cop on the street. You are trained to pursue and that you should do, despite the activists and press now suggesting that you allow people to run away. Fat chance.
I think most people who are honest are not buying into racist police, white privilege, or the temperature for the violence. Media types are just desperate and keep salivating over the same old talking points that “fake news” provides.
Yes, it’s poverty, degrading neighborhoods, lack of opportunity, and other ills of society. But that means it’s okay to shoot a 17-year old girl in the face, an 11-year old on a bike, or a 62-year old trying to sleep?
More cops, more prosecutions, higher bonds, jail time, and tough policing backed by politicians can go a long way to minimizing the carnage.
Blaming race, whiteness, or the heat is dumb. Local aldermen have recently suggested the fault of parents, and the need for watchful parents and the lack of religion as culprits in the violence.
There is no major economic plan says another. And others say drugs and blood money, not getting the education people need, and no hope since the government is giving up on them. More liberal dribble.
Really, it’s the government? I guess Ronald Reagan was right, eh?
Others, including JB Pritzker, blame Rauner. Hey, I don’t like Rauner, but I find it hard to believe he is at fault. This has been a problem long before Rauner became governor.
And then there is a “values” problem that causes an allocation of resources, like to Lollapalooza instead of to endangered communities.
So in my limited brain capacity and years giving wisdom to the cop world, I would say it all comes down to this. People are scared to come forward. Unless we make the arrests, the prosecutors make the bonds high and the judges keep the bad guys in jail, folks just won’t come forward.
Police can’t protect witnesses and can do nothing to secure their safety, short of putting someone in a witness protection program, which is not happening on a local level. Order of Protections are useless, too.
So unless you can keep these assholes in jail, nothing will change. They kill because they are assholes. That’s what assholes do, despite all hand wringing and meetings and opinions on the cause.
And unless the system will guarantee a witness’ safety, they will not come forward because they know the next bullet will be for them.
Vita é bella.
Before the column starts, I just want to say, as far as unions go:
Together we bargain Divided we beg
Here it is!
Yes, my annual “Shark Week” column has arrived. Feel lucky — it could be “Snake Week” if my favorite snake catchers Simon and Souixe of the television show Snake City had an annual event.
As you know, sharks are a lot like politicians. Sneaky, crafty, mean, without mercy, and just waiting in the murky waters to make you bleed. And just like sharks, politicians have a huge PR group with fundraising abilities.
Politicians always have the proper spin on why they lie, cheat, defer responsibilities, have lax moral turpitude, and why they always have their hands in your pockets.
Sharks have numerous spokespeople telling us cretins that they don’t hunt us, we are not on the menu, all while sharks bite and sometime consume people of all shapes and sizes throughout international waters.
Some shark experts, while feeding you with this bull will, speaking of bull, advise us that bull sharks are the most dangerous sharks in all of the world. They actually will chase you and eat you up just like your local property tax bill eats up your dollars, courtesy of your local politicians.
And fundraising? Here’s a sample of the Save the Sharks mantra every time a shark gobbles up some stupid surfer (nice alliteration, eh?). No offense meant to stupid surfers.
• Project Aware
• Shark Angels (I particularly like this one)
• Shark Savers
• Sea Shepard
• Predators in Peril
• Shark Friendly Marinas (Like gender friendly restrooms maybe?)
• Shark Research Institute
• White Shark Trust South Africa
• The I.C.U.N Shark Specialist Group
And there are many more. In a bit of politico connection, some shark charities have been flooded with donations after an interview with Stormy Daniels where it was alleged that President Trump told her he was terrified of sharks and hoped they would all die.
I’m assuming he will propose a wall to be constructed on both sides of the USA as well as the Gulf of Mexico to keep these fish that reportedly do injure some bathers out of sight and mind.
Politicians have enormous amounts of money from their fundraising benefactors, fueling the hatred of both political parties and their sycophants.
• The Koch Brothers
• Big Business
• Oil and Gas
• Labor Unions
• George Soros
• And the folks with no brains who give to these morons
So aside from the moronic “tweets” that Discovery Channel insists on killing me with, I enjoyed the week of chum, large sharks, science, and of course, “Bob the Shark” on the Shark after Dark show.
Until next year. Don’t be fooled — stay out of the water. And away from politicians. They do, as you can see, have much in common.
Vita é bella.
Why stay in the union?
I have been serving the law enforcement community for about 63 years. And yes, I’m older than that. Almost 25 ½ years as a cop and 38 years or so as a union guy.
During that time, I have seen police officers in all kinds of emotional states; happy, joyful, courageous, prideful, determined, funny, dedicated, and serving with honor.
I’ve also seen sadness, depression, PTSD, inconsolable, full of pain and sorrow, with a sense of discord for tomorrow. But through it all — the good, the bad, and the really, really ugly — there is utmost professionalism. The sense of duty and honor that makes them all strap on their duty gear is prevalent, despite a never-ending criticism by the public, press, and politicians, or what I call the three P’s.
Sometimes this discord comes from the inside, too. Self-centered and narcissist chiefs, brass, and mayors who would throw you under the train without a second thought when it suits them.
So we banded together and formed associations and unions to fight the dastardly deeds of Snidely Whiplash. (Just in case you don’t know Snidely, you do. He is the stereotypical villain to be found in cartoons and most police departments or village halls.)
And now after the Janus decision, administrations feel a sense of empowerment. They see a door open to rid the public sector, and especially cops, of the evil dirge of collective bargaining and unions. The billionaire republican sees a chance to destroy what so many of us have built up over the years to provide you with:
• A fair, bargained contract
• Life and health insurance
• Court pay
• Redress of your grievances
• And the most important — legal protection
Don’t be fooled. A few, but not many, cops are already looking to opt out to save union dues. But it’s the union who provides you with all of the above. Unions did that, not your benevolent father in the mayor’s office, or your step-dad in the chief’s chair. They will take care of their own. And you should take care of your own.
Opting out of a union to save a dime will cost you a buck in a few years. Yes, they will pretend to take care of you and encourage you into opting out to save some dues.
But you must see right through this. It will last only long enough to defeat you and then if you want increased wages, they will smile and snicker as they tell you it’s not in the budget.
You know, I’m retired now, but when I was a union thug (I’ve always loved that one) I have heard every bullshit argument from the dark side and I could miraculously see through the lies. I pray that you do, too, and do not fall for the evil doings of Snidely Whiplash.
Stay with your union, for your sake as well as your brothers and sisters in law enforcement.
Vita é bella.