Even for Illinois this is putrid. Two Illinois teacher Union lobbyists are able to collect teacher pensions because they each served as a substitute teacher for one day. This of course is taking place in a de facto bankrupt state.
Over the course of their lifetimes, both men stand to receive more than a million dollars each from a state pension fund that has less than half of the assets it needs to cover promises made to tens of thousands of public school teachers. With billions of dollars in unfunded liabilities, the Illinois Teachers’ Retirement System, which serves public school teachers outside of Chicago, is one of several pension plans that are in debt as state government reels in a fiscal crisis. Continue reading
The House has voted to cut off all federal funds for Acorn. The vote was 345-75. Here is a list of the 75 House members who want to continue to shovel your tax dollars to Acorn. Everyone of the 75 is a Democrat.
You know that Acorn is toast when even the Lying Worthless Political Hack, a/k/a Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, is calling for an investigation of Acorn. The day before yesterday she wasn’t even aware that the Senate had voted to cut off funding for Acorn.
O’Keefe and Giles continue their Acorn demolition tour with a visit to an Acorn office in San Diego. Here an Acorn employee helpfully offered to smuggle underage girls across the border to work in the brothel, and inquired about the prices charged by Giles. Our tax dollars hard at work.
1. The second part of the San Bernardino Acorn expose of O’Keefe and Giles. Go here to read the comments of Giles regarding her “girl talk” with the flakey Acorn employee.
2. In the wake of the Acorn scandal exposed by the intrepid duo of O’Keefe and Giles, Acorn has announced that it is suspending advising new clients and is setting up an independent review board. Hmmm, this is an amazing turnabout from the initial reaction of Acorn to the videos which was that the whole thing was a conspiracy against Acorn put together by Fox. Of course the “independent review board” is stacked with cronies and supporters of Acorn, but at least Acorn is under such pressure that it has to pretend to be trying to reform itself.
3. Governor Pawlenty of Minnesota has ordered a review and suspension of any state contracts with Acorn.
4. Governor Schwarzenegger in California is calling for a full investigation of Acorn’s California activities.
5. Meantime Acorn has joined the Reverend Wright, and many other groups and individuals under the Obama bus. Obama had a somewhat different attitude regarding the organization just last year:
When Obama met with ACORN leaders in November, he reminded them of his history with ACORN and his beginnings in Illinois as a Project Vote organizer, a nonprofit focused on voter rights and education. Senator Obama said, “I come out of a grassroots organizing background. That’s what I did for three and half years before I went to law school. That’s the reason I moved to Chicago was to organize. So this is something that I know personally, the work you do, the importance of it. I’ve been fighting alongside ACORN on issues you care about my entire career. Even before I was an elected official, when I ran Project Vote voter registration drive in Illinois, ACORN was smack dab in the middle of it, and we appreciate your work.”
6. The Lying Worthless Political Hack, a/k/a Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House, was asked about the Senate bill cutting off funding for Acorn, her response was as follows: “I don’t even know what they passed,” Pelosi told The Post yesterday. “What did they do? They defunded it?”
7. I have never liked Jon Stewart: too liberal for my conservative tastes. However, this clip of his show here where he lambastes the mainstream media for missing the Acorn story is a must see. As he notes, he is a fake journalist and he feels terrible about being scooped on a story by a couple of kids. He gets to the heart of the matter. The corruption of Acorn has been apparent for years, but neither the media nor the politicians did anything until a very inventive “couple of kids” took the initiative to expose the corruption for all to see. A media that ignores this type of story is a media that is worthless. Politicians who tolerate this type of corruption and shovel taxpayer funds at a manifestly corrupt organization are worse than worthless. What O’Keefe and Giles have demonstrated is that we do not have to put up with this state of affairs. Look forward for more shoes to drop: more videos are on the way.
O’Keefe and Giles take their pimp and prostitute masquerade to an Acorn office in San Bernadino California and are met with open arms! Four Acorn offices across the nation have no problem with helping out a criminal enterprise involving underage prostitutes! This has been a brilliant sting which has brought Acorn to its knees in just a few days. Amazing, simply amazing! Go here to read Hannah Giles’ comments on the science behind the Acorn sting.
The mainstream media and this story? Best summed up by ABC’s Charlie Gibson’s comment this morning on WLS in Chicago that he knew nothing about it. If a story reflects poorly on Democrats, it might as well not exist for much of the mainstream media. In the day of blogs and youtube, this type of partisan “ostrich journalism” is rapidly becoming extinct. They will not be missed.
Not really. This New York Times article contends that my home state of Illinois is not the most corrupt state in the Union. However I note that two of the three methods by which they obtain their rankings focus on convictions. In a truly corrupt state, convictions might lag because the engines of law enforcement are often part of the problem. Based upon spending my entire life in Illinois, except for three years, I believe FBI Agent Robert Grant is correct, if Illinois is not the most corrupt state, it is a strong competitor for the title.
Update I: Lisa Madigan, Attorney General of the State of Illinois, is attempting today to have the Illinois Supreme Court strip Blagojevich of his powers as Governor. I agree with this article that her brief is extremely weak and would draw a “C” as the effort of a first year law student. At any rate I doubt if the Illinois Supreme Court will step into this briar patch. If the House acts swiftly to impeach him, Blagojevich may resign, but I do not think anything short of this will work. To add to the banana republic quality that is part and parcel of current Illinois politics, Lisa Madigan is the daughter of Michael Madigan speaker of the House who has a long-standing blood feud with Blagojevich. Lisa Madigan herself has long been thought to be hungering to be Governor. Illinois politics frequently consists now of hereditary political fiefdoms that are passed down through the generations. We have the reality of a largely feudal political system with none of the entertaining trappings.
Update II: As usual, John Kass of the Tribune has a brilliant column on the farce that is Illinois politics.
Update III: Ed Morrissey at Hot Air has an excellent look at the behind the scenes machinations of this mess. I wholeheartedly agree with his conclusion: “Calling this sewer “The Land of Lincoln” is a bad joke. If Illinois voters aren’t inclined to make the kind of necessary changes, can they change the license plates to read, “The Land of Capone”? It’s certainly a more accurate description.”
I have lived in the Land of Lincoln my entire life, except for a brief period as a small boy when my parents lived in Saint John’s Newfoundland, the homeland of my sainted mother.