Heartwarming News From My Village

Thursday, March 31, AD 2016


Whoever is kind to the poor lends to the LORD, and he will reward them for what they have done.

Proverbs: 19:17


I am proud to say that the two young men were members of my daughter’s graduating class:


Luke Arnold and Ryan Kodat were enjoying a snow day off from school in 2013 when they saw Herter out in the cold. A few hours later, they saw Herter again and approached him, learning that he was trying to make his way to Springfield, Illinois, to see his ailing father.

The two friends went back to Kodat’s house to get extra clothes for Herter and brought along Kodat’s father, who bought Herter a train ticket to Springfield, about 90 miles away.

“They got him on the train and that was it,” Kaiser said. “They’d just done something nice for him, not knowing it was a true story or not.”

No one but Kodat and Arnold’s family and close circle of friends knew about the good deed until Herter’s letter and check arrived at the high school last month.

While Kodat and Arnold, now both 21, went on to college and technical school, Herter discovered a surprise in his own life. According to his letter, he came into an inheritance of more than $1 million from his father.

He is now living in California, working as a stand-up comedian and writer, according to his Facebook page.

“He said to do whatever we wanted with the money, but it had to be in memory of his father and in honor of the two boys who helped him,” Kaiser said.

Kaiser and the district’s superintendent, Dr. Richard Jancek, decided to create two $500 scholarships for Dwight seniors to be awarded each year for the next 10 years. The award recipients will be selected after submitting an essay on a random act of kindness they’ve done.

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How Corrupt is Illinois? This Corrupt

Wednesday, February 19, AD 2014

Understanding Illinois Politics



Ah, my home state.  Just when you think it has hit rock bottom it sinks lower.  Paul Mirengoff of the Powerline blog gives us the details of the latest outrage in the Land of Lincoln:


Arthur Bishop, the new director of the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), was convicted in the 1990s of bilking his employer, a substance abuse counseling center, out of money received from its clients. According to the center’s director at the time, Bishop created a bogus program for convicted drunk drivers. He took money from patients and provided them with forms they wrongly believed would allow them to get their driver’s licenses back.

Unfortunately for Bishop’s victims, the center wasn’t licensed by the state to provide that service at the time. Bishop pleaded guilty to misdemeanor theft.

Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, a Democrat, is standing by his decision to make Bishop the state’s top child-welfare official. He claims to see no connection between Bishop’s corruption and his ability to lead a department that has been plagued by charges of failure to keep track of its money. In December, Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan sued a Chicago businessman and friend of a former DCFS director to recover millions of dollars in state grant money the businessman allegedly misspent.

If Quinn can’t see the connection between stealing and unfitness to run a large government agency, perhaps he can connect the dots on Bishop’s own “children and family” issues. Court records show that a paternity case was filed against Bishop in 2003, when he was a DCFS deputy director. DNA tests showed he was the father of Erica Bishop, then 17.

According to the child’s mother, Bishop, who was married to another woman when Erica was born, “denies his own daughter’s existence” even though “he visited us on numerous occasions at my parents’ house when she was a child.” The mother further alleged that Bishop “even asked me if he could live in with me if his wife put him out after she learned the truth.”

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8 Responses to How Corrupt is Illinois? This Corrupt

  • How will these ( men ) be able to lift up their heads when Jesus draws near?
    The poor sort.
    They have no soul.

  • Its amazing that after a criminal conviction ca. 1995 he was hired in short order for the first in a string of positions in the child welfare apparat. He was not some adolescent punk who stole $50 from his summer employer, but a 43 year old professional who embezzled a four-digit sum at the time he was convicted.

    I will wager this social services lifer has a sponsor among Chicago’s South Side and West Side aldermen. I would be fascinated to know with whom Gov. Quinn cut this deal.

  • He sired a bastard child when he was 33 years old, not 17.

  • The Land of Obamo and then late Mr Lincoln is and always will be the utmost sewer of political dimwits who seem to turn a blind eye to corruption as long as their pockets are full of so called ” Bridges to No Where ” cash that was originally meant for what liberals love to call “Social Justice” Projects serving the poor and less advantaged ?!#??Only problem is they ( liberals) are the poor and less advataged ,intolerant, of anyone or any organization that dares to expose their hippocrisy !

  • Seems to be another case of ‘birds of a feather …’ – rapacious birds that don’t sing.

  • At the entrance of the State office where I work there are two circle/slash style signs posted, one for “no smoking” and the other for “no guns” since Illinois now has a concealed carry law (the first permits are expected to go out next month). They really should add a third sign: the circle/slash “no bull—-” sticker.

  • I am eagerly awaiting the No Crooks sign Elaine!

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Illinois 48th? I Protest!

Monday, November 25, AD 2013

5 Responses to Illinois 48th? I Protest!

  • Actually, Don, I think California will always have an edge on us in this department because their laws and courts are way screwier than ours. Plus, Rhode Island is so small and heavily urbanized and has a long enough history of municipal corruption that it could be a reflection of what Cook County might look like if it had its own state all to itself. On those two bases alone I would say they have beaten us to the bottom.

  • I respectfully disagree Elaine. Illinois has the worst credit rating of any of the States and that is an accurate reflection of the misgovernment that makes this rich state de facto bankrupt.

  • If by “worst run state” you mean “state with the worst/most incompetent FISCAL management,” then yes, I would agree we win… I mean lose… hands down. But if you define “worst run” to mean “worst in ALL aspects of overall governance” I still think there are at least a few states that are worse in that regard. CA and RI have already been mentioned, plus NJ and LA have, I think, more entrenched and pervasive corruption at the local government level.

    NY and CA are also still be worse us in some aspects of tax burdens and oppressive nanny state-ism; IL gained a few points in the personal freedom category by finally enacting a shall-issue concealed carry law, though the outcome of the rules implementation process for obtaining permits remains to be seen.

    As for which state is most corrupt, I dunno that “number of jailed governors or other public officials” is necessarily the most accurate measure of that.

    Personally I would say the best measure of corruption is: how difficult is it for an ordinary citizen lacking wealth or political connections to obtain needed services — for example, a professional license or a building permit — or to have a grievance resolved (e.g. a disputed tax bill) without resorting to extra-legal measures, such as paying bribes, seeking intervention from someone with more clout, or promising to vote for a particular person or slate of candidates? While Chicago is notorious for this type of corruption, I’m not sure how other communities or other states would compare; I suspect some might be as bad or worse.

  • Don – Don’t be a wuss. California just wanted it more than Illinois, and they outplayed you. And look at all that California has going for it: natural resources, an established educational system, cutting-edge technology, Hollywood. They managed to blow all of it in pursuit of their goal of #50. Put another couple million of your Illinoisans in unfunded prisons and come back next year.

    As for me, Maryland, My Maryland, you’re only in the middle of the pack, but I know you can do better. It’s that massive inflow of money from around the US – although I notice that your budget is still a mess. You’ve got the crime to make it to the 40’s, if you just didn’t have that high per capita income. Still, I respect your failure. Virginia is #14, and you’re #24. So squander away, and if states like Illinois keep phoning it in, you could be a playoff contender one day.

  • I have just been thinking, I know things have gotten a little better here, but what does it say about the REST of America, when PA (home of the one and only Philadelphia) is barely in the bottom half?

Is Dick Durbin the Dumbest US Senator not Named Barbara Boxer?

Friday, August 9, AD 2013





John Hinderacker of Powerline asks the crucial question:  is Dick Durbin (D. Ill) the dumbest Democrat?:


The competition is intense, but Durbin is definitely a contender. Here is the latest evidence:

In preparation for a previously announced hearing on controversial “stand your ground” laws announced after the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, Sen. Richard J. Durbin, D-Ill., sent letters to more than 300 possible corporate backers of the American Legislative Exchange Council, requesting their position on such policies in states across the country.

This is Durbin’s press release announcing the “stand your ground” hearing in his Senate Judiciary subcommittee:

Around 30 states currently have some form of “stand your ground” laws on the books. September’s hearing will examine the gun lobby’s and the American Legislative Exchange Council’s influence in creating and promoting these laws; the way in which the laws have changed the legal definition of self-defense; the extent to which the laws have encouraged unnecessary shooting confrontations; and the civil rights implications when racial profiling and “stand your ground” laws mix, along with other issues.

There are multiple layers of stupidity here, so let’s try to itemize at least some of them:

1) Self-defense is a matter of state, not federal, law. Why is Durbin’s Judiciary Subcommittee holding a hearing on a topic that cannot, and will not, result in federal legislation?

2) “Stand your ground” had nothing to do with the Trayvon Martin case, as both prosecutors and defense lawyers said, and as we and many others have explained countless times. Is Dick Durbin really one of the few who don’t get this?

3) As Durbin’s own press release states, around 30 states have some some sort of stand your ground legislation. That is a clear majority. There is a reason for this. Most people think such laws are a good idea, as shown by, for example, a strong 45%-32% plurality in this Rasmussen survey. It is not necessary to investigate the influence of some nefarious “lobby” to explain why popular legislation is enacted in 30 states.

4) Durbin’s attack on the American Legislative Exchange Council is a sad page in the current left-wing playbook. A previously little-known good government group (albeit one with broad support and participation among both corporations and legislators), ALEC found itself in the left-wing crosshairs a year or so ago, and has remained there. Why? Roll Call’s blog offers a clue:

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15 Responses to Is Dick Durbin the Dumbest US Senator not Named Barbara Boxer?

  • Interesting headline, but Donald, aren’t you from Maryland?

  • Durbin’s not stupid, he’s simply an unimaginative legislative hack. For my money, Al Franken’s a much bigger dumbass, largely because he thinks he’s a member of the smart set.

  • “Durbin’s not stupid, he’s simply an unimaginative legislative hack.”

    There is no reason why he can’t be both.

  • Pinky,

    You’re thinking of the wrong blogger. Donald’s from Illinois.

  • Paul – I stand corrected.
    Donald – Have you heard of Maryland? Although yeah, I guess I can’t argue with an Illinoisan about this. This is a tough category to judge. I’m not even sure that the average Californian would rank Boxer as the second-smartest Senator from the state.

  • My Senator for many years was Charles Schumer. I think I might prefer dumbass.

    What is disconcerting is the extension of the unpleasantness of the nutroots into the world of working politicians. Alinsky said: “Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” You have masses of people with obsessions about Sarah Palin, the Koch brothers, and now the American Legislative Exchange Council, as if any one of these were doing anything out of the ordinary in a political system which has deliberative processes.

  • I will confess gentlemen that in reference to Durbin home state loyalty is tugging at my sleeve. In regard to the Senate, massive ignorance and foolishness are never in short supply, and good cases can be made for the odious, and never intentionally funny, Al Franken and the embalmed Barbara Mikulski.

  • The best you can say about Dick Durbin is…umm…huh, I see your point, Donald.

  • I don’t think he’s dumb at all. He just knows what side his bread is buttered on (the left side, of course). Also, he and his staff seem to have a good reputation for direct service to constituents who call his offices with questions or requests for help. That may be one reason he keeps getting reelected by large margins, even in Downstate counties (though I wouldn’t vote for him if he were the last politician on earth).

  • Durbin may well be the dumbest Senator as it is hard to refute your logic. However most certainly by claiming to be Catholic and being pro abortion he is a heretic. I would call him a knave and a fool.

  • Let’s not forget that Mr. Durbin also managed to discover soot inside Chicago’s Union Train Station. He even called a press conference to announce it. Unfortunately for the senator, no one was willing to take his concern seriously. The man is an embarrassment to the human race!

  • This insipid character, who is eligible for a handsome pension after 30-odd years on the federal payroll, is of the view that we all are in need of his septuagenarian wit and wisdom.


    Not as egregious as the 94 year old Strom Thurmond standing for re-election in 1996 (and who was so dotty in his last years that he ended up making a pass at the columnist Mark Steyn while attempting to cop a feel of a woman they were sharing an elevator with), or Robert Byrd being parked in Congress for 56 years until expiring at the age of 92, or the 84 year old Ted Stevens offering that 40 years of him was not enough for the voters of Alaska, or the 80 year old Richard Lugar insisting that 36 years of him (of which 35 years had him using a house he had sold in 1977 as his voting address) was insufficient. Mandatory retirement, please.

  • “…is Dick Durbin (D. Ill) the dumbest Democrat?”

    Most – if not all – Democrats think the way in which Dick Durbin thinks when it comes to conservative, right-wing, Christian and especially orthodox Catholic bloggers. They believe that only they are freedom-loving and anyone who disagrees with them on any issue – especially those related to sexual morality and the right to life – are fascists who need to be squashed. I deal with one such person who is a super-knowledgeable pro-nuclear blogger. As I have commented here before, his ability in nuclear engineering and science far outweighs my own 33 years of training and experience. But he is an adamant leftist in 100% agreement with Dick Durbin. Why? Because he is a leftist and by definition all such leftists are willingly blind, beholden only to the religion of their left-wing ideology in which they equivocate license to sexual immorality and murder of the unborn with freedom and choice, but deny freedom of conscience – even freedom of speech – to all others.

    This is not going to end well at all. Not at all. 🙁

  • Sen. Durbin is Catholic? Who knew? And who’s Durbin’s bishop?

    Well-publicized public faithlessness of Catholics who seek a public stage or public authority should be publicly called out and a demand made publicly for a well-publicized public recantation.

Today Detroit, Tomorrow Chicago?

Wednesday, July 31, AD 2013





I view Detroit and its bankruptcy as a harbinger of things to come.  The blue state social model of ever higher taxes, ever expanding benefits for members of public employee unions and one party rule by the Democrat party is coming to an end.  The ending will be painful for people luckless enough to live in blue states, as I do, but this parasitical form of government ultimately destroys the private economy host it feeds on.  Walter Mead at Via Meadia has been prescient in seeing this:


It looks like Detroit may yet have competition for the distinction of America’s most poorly run city. The unprecedented triple-drop in Chicago’s bond rating and the city’s shiny new long-term debt figure—$29 billion—should have pols quaking in their boots. The Chicago Sun-Times has published some distressing numbers from Chicago’s recent audits:

In addition to the pension, law enforcement, and emergency response concerns that remind us of a certain bankrupt city across the lake, the report notes that three of Chicago’s four largest private employers (JP Morgan, Accenture LLP, and Northern Trust) are in finance. It seems like blue cities have a codependent relationship with the one percenters progressives claim to hate.

It hasn’t all hit the fan quite yet, but Chicago seems perilously close to real trouble. The city is all out of money, and with an imploding public education system and harrowing levels of violence, it is losing residents fast. Illinois, which itself lost more than 800,000 people to out-migration in the past two decades, is essentially Chicago on a larger scale, with hundreds of billions in unfunded pension liabilities and complete political sclerosis. The state cannot bail out Chicago, and judging by the feds’ reluctance to even lift a finger for Detroit, Chicago shouldn’t expect much more.

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7 Responses to Today Detroit, Tomorrow Chicago?

  • To be more precise, you have several problems in Detroit (in particular) and other cities.

    1. A deficit of institutions encompassing the whole of the metropolitan settlement.

    2. Suboptimal placement of service provision in the architecture of local government (e.g. police departments placed with municipal governments as opposed to county governments).

    3. Intra-metropolitan migration patterns which leave the slum neighborhoods (with their special problems and denuded tax base) concentrated in the core municipality. Detroit presents a special case of a municipality which is all slum.

    4. Public policy at all levels corrupted by the notion that the purpose of public agency is to sluice income to clients of the Democratic Party and (in general) to be convenient to the employees of said agency. (The Republican Party is amply supplied with otiose characters and sleazy careerists who are happy to be accommodating).

    5. The vested interests of suburban voters and the black political establishment which inhibit any attempts at salutary institutional adjustment.

  • Social Justice!!

    What about the children!!!

    From “Never Yet Melted” blog. Here’s how it works.

    “Three contractors are bidding to fix a broken fence at the White House. One is from Chicago, another is from Tennessee, and the third is from Minnesota. All three go with a White House official to examine the fence.

    “The Minnesota contractor takes out a tape measure and does some measuring, then works some figures with a pencil. ‘Well,’ he says, ‘I figure the job will run about $900. $400 for mater…ials, $400 for my crew, and $100 profit for me.’

    “The Tennessee contractor also does some measuring and figuring, then says, ‘I can do this job for $700. $300 for materials, $300 for my crew, and $100 profit for me.’

    “The Chicago contractor doesn’t measure or figure, but leans over to the White House official and whispers, ‘$2,700.’

    “The official, incredulous, says, ‘You didn’t even measure like the other guys! How did you come up with such a high figure?’

    “The Chicago contractor whispers back, ‘$1000 for me, $1000 for you, and we hire the guy from Tennessee to fix the fence.’

    “’Done!’ replies the government official.

    “And that, my friends, is how Government works today.”

  • Cities seem to find their way into the state coffers. My hunch is the weight of Detroit became too much for Michigan’s declining population and industry. I’d guess that Illinois is stronger.

  • There is not much wrong with state revenue sharing per se. The problem you get is when you are financing all sorts of specialized projects and granting special favors. A formulaic distribution which took into account population and per capita income and expected the subsidiary government to manage within the limits of the sum of its revenue sources would be appropriate. A problem you have is that central cities are stuck with the task of policing the slums on their own account; a secondary problem is that you have fixed costs in the face of demographic decline. A driver of demographic decline is a deficit of public security and another might be property taxes. Addressing the one can exacerbate the other.

  • What is mildly amusing in a schadenfreude sort of way about these municipal/state fiscal crises is how little recourse the left has to its usual toolkit of solutions-cum-excuses that they apply at the federal level:
    – No national defense spending to cut to generate magical surpluses (although at the state level, correctional institution budgets sometimes serve as an analogous target of progressive ire)
    – “Tax the rich” is not a winning strategy when the rich and industry are fleeing in droves
    – No sovereign currency to inflate your way out

    And worst of all for the left, there’s usually no dastardly Republican political block to blame. It’s all on you, progressives – own it!

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  • Ironically, there is a story going around right now claiming that certain wealthy Chicago businessmen of fiscally conservative leanings engaged in a conscious strategy of trying to get Illinois’ bond rating lowered, in order to gin up public pressure for state employee pension reform:


    Upon closer examination it appears (if we take what Fahner says at face value) that what actually happened is that certain members of the group in question (Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago) encouraged bond rating agencies such as Moody’s and S&P to “go or get off the pot” with regard to their continual threats to lower Illinois’ bond rating. However, they later backed off in order to avoid any appearance of trying to manipulate the bond ratings, or pursue a “destroy the village in order to save it” strategy (which the questioner in the video phrases as “sometimes you have to be irresponsible to be responsible”).

Illinois Taught Obama All He Knows About Governing

Sunday, January 27, AD 2013

8 Responses to Illinois Taught Obama All He Knows About Governing

  • Silver Lining Department:

    IL is number one in horseradish production.

    And, with a little effort, IL can improve its number three ranking (behind CA and NY) in the “most politically corrupt state” category.

  • What’s worse is that the pension liability problem COULD be alleviated considerably, were it not for the fact that IL has become so dependent upon short-term borrowing that when the bond houses say “jump,” we have no choice but to say “how high”? For this reason alone, some common-sense measures that wouldn’t risk massively expensive legal action are kept off the table.

    The unfunded pension liability is a problem that didn’t develop overnight (it’s been around for decades), can’t be blamed entirely on any one person, party or group of people, and can’t be solved overnight without doing considerable injustice to retirees, taxpayers, or both. The reasons for this are kind of complicated and I can explain them in later posts if anyone is interested.

  • ….more silver lining; University of St. Mary of the Lake in Mundelein IL. And Marytown.

    My point is ” where sin abounds grace abounds all the more.” One of the greatest retreat centers is Marytown. Perpetual Eucharistic Adoration for over 85 years in this Holy sanctuary. IL. has it’s challenges sure, but it also has sacred homes that Abe would be lifting his head and heart to.

  • I was not aware that he ever learned anything moral about governing.

  • Aside from the fiscal lunacy and greedy corruption:
    Chicago has a Life Dept. !
    Hope for IL in an organized, spirited group in numbers that could probably fill two buses. My group was uplifted by walking near them for a time on Friday afternoon on Constitution Ave. with the snow beginning to fall. I’ll try to describe, although the impact was their creative variety of chants, for which I wish I took notes.
    Yellow hooded sweatshirts with LIFE on the backs in white, arm emblems on the idea of fire or police depts. – red four petals with Chicago Life Dept. in center.
    A couple of drummers to accompany as if a march.
    An arch of yellow balloons and a couple of clustered ones.
    Led by a ‘boat’ with wheels that could be raised by a few people, made of sturdy branches with a platform for the chant leader, festooned with yellow balloons.
    They were spirited and singing out their messages for all around to hear. (Great for tired, cold ones around them … )
    They stopped at the steps to the Russell Senate Ofc. bldg., which sported a camera on the second floor balcony and guards on the roof.
    Being short on memorizing powers, I noted they had at least ten chants, as well as patriotic songs. There was: Hey, hey, ho, ho; Roe v. Wade has got to go. And from a rock song, We will, we will, Save you. Salve Regina – first verse.
    We tarried for a while, the sons and daughters of some in our group paying attention and talking about next year…
    I wonder where they stopped next, we had a bus waiting – schedules to follow.

  • Illinois Taught Obama All He Knows About Governing

    Well done, Don 😆

  • “Chicago has a Life Dept.”

    Wonder if they were the same group that staged a pro-life “flash mob” event in Daley Plaza a couple of years ago, coinciding with a Planned Parenthood “Walk for Choice” event, cultminating with a release of yellow “LIFE” balloons.


  • PM-
    Thanks for the remembrance. The chant, We will Save you, is perfect. It is going to happen. The end of legalized abortions will take place.
    We must keep at it. Prayer and action.
    Thanks for sharing some of the event with us.

Why Illinois Is Bankrupt

Tuesday, March 27, AD 2012




My beloved state of Illinois has a terrible economy, and a shrinking tax base but that is apparently no problem for the bi-partisan pirates who have been plundering the Land of Lincoln for decades:

When Republican state Rep. Roger Eddy announced his retirement from the House Thursday, you could hear the “ding, ding, ding” of a slot machine all the way from Springfield.
Eddy hit the pension jackpot.
He is retiring early from the House to run the Illinois Association of School Boards, which, among other activities, lobbies the Illinois Legislature. His start date is July 1 — although now that he’s leaving the Statehouse before the end of the spring session, he said it’s likely he’ll work for the association before July.
Why the sudden defection? One likely reason: He’ll be much richer in retirement, thanks in part to taxpayers.
In his new job, Eddy will not only stay in the Teachers’ Retirement System, he can collect more in benefits from it. He has been working both as a state representative and superintendent for Hutsonville Community Unit School District 1. He has been part of TRS through his Hutsonville job, where he earned a salary of $107,400. His new salary is expected to be at least $200,000, and his pension will be based on that.
Illinois Statehouse News reported that Eddy’s pension as school superintendent would have been about $70,500 a year. It will climb to at least $141,000 in his new job. His predecessor at the IASB, Mike Johnson, is earning an annual pension — get ready to swallow hard — of $193,273, according to TRS.
But that’s not the end of Eddy’s pension largesse. He’ll be eligible in two years to begin collecting a pension of about $24,000 a year from his nine years of part-time work in the Legislature. Illinois Statehouse News projected his lawmaker pension carries a lifetime value of $584,273. Eddy is 53 years old.

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6 Responses to Why Illinois Is Bankrupt

  • Not only do incidents like this hurt taxpayers, they also hurt the vast majority of state employees who cannot and will not ever receive pensions that large — if indeed they receive a pension at all, at the rate things are going.

  • “…if indeed they receive a pension at all, at the rate things are going.”

    The only pension I have is what I save myself. My saving rate is hurt by taxes.

  • …and Illinois had to add insult to injury by giving the nation Obama to everlasting shame.

  • Born and raised in the Land of Lincoln, going to school in Georgia, and never looking back (well, maybe for a Bulls game or two).

  • They should start showing this commercial in Wisconsin. Too many people up here still think Scott Walker is being very mean to the poor teachers. I’m not a huge Ann Coulter fan, but she summed up the situation very nicely by noting that the public union employees want the people in the private sector – people who are already suffering – to suffer more so public union employees do not have to suffer at all. What floors me is how many private sector people have fallen for the union propaganda.

    Ah, well, as Mark Steyn has been saying lately, civilisations can die of stupidity. We sure seem to be headed that way.

  • “Too many people up here still think Scott Walker is being very mean to the poor teachers.”

    The Illinois Chamber of Commerce has invited Walker to address a meeting in Springfield on April 17 regarding solutions to the pension/budget crisis. Of course, union types are vowing to protest the appearance.

    In some ways, however, our Democratic governor, Pat Quinn, is not exactly a friend of unions either. At the end of the last fiscal year, he announced out of the blue that pay increases previously negotiated as part of a union contract would be frozen, on the grounds that not enough money had been appropriated to cover them. In other words, Quinn abruptly reneged on an existing contract, whereas Walker used the legislative process to change the law first and gave everyone plenty of notice of what he intended to do. After the pay freeze was imposed some AFSCME officials complained that Quinn was “worse than Walker” for that very reason!

The Land of Lincoln Votes

Tuesday, March 20, AD 2012


By thy rivers gently flowing, Illinois, Illinois,

 O’er thy prairies verdant growing, Illinois, Illinois,

 Comes an echo on the breeze.  

Rustling through the leafy trees,

 and its mellow tones are these, Illinois, Illinois,

 And its mellow tones are these, Illinois.

From a wilderness of prairies, Illinois, Illinois,

Straight thy way and never varies, Illinois, Illinois,

 Till upon the inland sea,

  Stands thy great commercial tree,

 turning all the world to thee, Illinois, Illinois,

 Turning all the world to thee, Illinois.  

When you heard your country calling, Illinois, Illinois,  

Where the shot and shell were falling, Illinois, Illinois,

 When the Southern host withdrew,

 Pitting Gray against the Blue,  

there were none more brave than you, Illinois, Illinois,

 There were none more brave than you, Illinois.

Not without thy wondrous story, Illinois, Illinois,

 Can be writ the nation’s glory, Illinois, Illinois,

 On the record of thy years,

 Abraham Lincoln’s name appears,

 Grant and Logan, and our tears, Illinois, Illinois,

 Grant and Logan, and our tears, Illinois.




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15 Responses to The Land of Lincoln Votes

  • (Guest comment from Don’s wife Cathy:) The robocalls have come from even lower levels of government than Don has noted. I’ve answered at least one robocall from someone running for our local County Board, for example. Last night was especially bad for robocalls; it seemed one couldn’t go more than 15 minutes (if that) without yet another one. Such a relief when a real person making a non-political call would contact us instead!

  • Your comments about robocalls give me pause. We’re set to kick off the campaigning in Maryland, and of course making phone calls is part of our itinerary. I suppose calls from live human beings are not as annoying as robocalls, but I still worry that it’s overkill.

    As for IL, as is the case with just about all the states, the delegate allotment is proportional, so Santorum should be able to win a fair number of delegates if he takes the more conservative congressional districts.

  • True Paul. I am in the 15th Congressional District and I expect that Santorum will prevail here. That will be doubly sweet for me as we have some local politcos as Romney delegates, including one that I have long nicknamed “THE EMPTY SUIT”, and it will put a smile on my face to see them deprived of their delegate slots!

    As to robocalls Paul I have always hated them. I hang on long enough to hear who it is from before slamming down the receiver. I think when all campaigns are using them, and calling the same household multiple times, it diminishes whatever effectiveness they had when they were a relative novelty and merely serves to exasperate most of the recipients of the calls.

  • Vote early, vote often.

  • Santorum is starting at a disadvantage in Illinois in that he failed to submit names for 10 of the 54 delegates selected tonight.

  • Yep BA that is what happens when you start out as a presidential candidate on less than a shoestring and with apparently a zero chance. It is a tribute to Santorum as a candidate, and to the vast unpopularity of Romney with much of the Republican base, that Santorum is now slugging it out toe to toe with Romney and turning what Romney expected to be a coronation into a real contest.

  • My law partner, whose astuteness apparently exceeds Dave Hartline’s expectations, just emailed me the following: “I spent a few minutes scanning through the exit poll data from Illinois. Romney increased his lead over Santorum in the Catholic vote compared with prior primaries, gaining 53% to 30%. He also won the sub-stratum of Catholic voters that attend service every week, 48-39% (contrary to claims by some in the Santorum camp that Romney doesn’t fare well among practicing Catholics). As expected, Santorum won the Evangelical vote, 39% to 48%, but that is a lower margin than elsewhere. Generally speaking, Romney won every possible demographic except unmarried males between 40-49, those with no education beyond high school, and those who make less than 30k. Interestingly, it looks like Santorum and Hillary share much of the same base, just in different parties.”

  • We’re talking ILLINOIS here, right? My bet would be that every demographic in Illinois – the state which, along with Massachusetts, showed a remarkable immunity to the GOP gains in 2010 – is further to the left than similar demographics in every other state. I would bet that practicing Catholics and Evangelicals in Illinois, though perhaps conservative, are less so than practicing Catholics and Evangelicals in other states.

    So, those figures quoted above give me absolutely no pause whatsoever. Illinois is arguably one of the two most liberal states in the union. It gave us Obama. It would be tragic if conservatives and Republicans allowed yesterday’s results in a liberal state that Republicans have absolutely NO CHANCE of EVER winning in a presidential election to give us Obama Lite (aka Romney), as well.

  • Jay nailed it–I mentioned on another blog this morning that “it appears Mitt Romney has carried yet another state he has no chance of winning in November.”

  • Actually Jay in 2010 the Republicans in Illinois picked up four congressional seats, made gains in the legislature and almost took the governorship. Illinois is not Massachusetts and given a well funded GOP candidate, it is a pretty 50-50 state at the polls, except at the presidential level where the Democrats have dominated since 1992. Obama in 2004 replaced a conservative Republican senator who decided not to run for re-election. The main problem in Illinois is that terrible corruption runs rampant throughout both parties, and that conviction politicians of a conservative bent have difficulty gaining any support from the GOP establishment.

  • In regard to Santorum’s loss I attribute it almost entirely to Romney’s overwhelming spending advantage, lockstep support of Romney by the corrupt GOP establishment in this state, and the fact that Santorum did not spend enough time in the state to start a grass roots movement to compensate for those disadvantages.

  • “…and the fact that Santorum did not spend enough time in the state to start a grass roots movement to compensate for those disadvantages.”

    That’s an excellent point. I didn’t get Santorum’s decision to go to PR, of all places. His campaign discipline still needs some work.

  • Jay,
    Unfortunately, I agree with your assessment of my native state. That said, Dave and others have been pretty emphatic in pointing out that the GOP base in IL is quite conservative and that this would be demonstrated by success for Santorum in the primary. My take is that Dave et al are right that the IL GOP base is plenty conservative notwithstanding the liberal bias of the state, but they were wrong in assuming that that this would translate into success for Santorum. Romney’s difficulties are concentrated in a few key demographics, but these demographics are not directly related to one’s degree of conservatism.

  • “Actually Jay in 2010 the Republicans in Illinois picked up four congressional seats, made gains in the legislature and almost took the governorship.”

    I stand corrected then, Don, on Ilinois’ immunity to the GOP tide in 2010. I suppose I was basing my assessment almost entirely on the state’s electing a hardcore anti-Catholic “Catholic” leftist Democrat as Governor even after the whole Blago imbroglio.

  • I can tell you exactly how that occurred Jay. Personal Pac, a pro-abort lobbying group run by a personal nemesis of mine from college named Terry Cosgrove, ran endless internet ads attacking pro-life Bill Brady. Brady made the mistake of ignoring them, due to almost every poll showing him winning comfortably. Bad mistake. It stampeded enough suburban women into voting for the worst governor in the country, Quinn, who is now immensely unpopular in the State due to the tax hike he rammed through the legislature in a midnight session. Quinn’s margin of victory was 0.9%.

Another Win For Governor Quinn: Illinois Has the Lowest Credit Rating of all the States!

Friday, January 20, AD 2012


I have designated Governor Quinn of my homestate of Illinois the worst governor in the country.  Not content to rest on his laurels, Governor Quinn has continued to misgovern the Land of Lincoln with the skill of a spendthrift who is afraid that he has a cent somewhere that remains unspent.  Such diligence will always reap a reward, and one has now come to Quinn:

Illinois, unable to solve its long-running financial problems, was given the lowest credit rating of any state in the country by Moody’s Investors Service on Friday, a move that will increase costs to taxpayers.

A second agency, Standard & Poor’s, left its Illinois rating unchanged but warned of a negative outlook that could lead to a downgrade in the future. A day earlier, Fitch Ratings also left the rating unchanged and declared a stable outlook.

Lower credit ratings generally mean the state winds up paying more interest when it borrows money by selling bonds.

Both Moody’s and S&P said they are troubled by Illinois’ failure to balance its budget and strengthen government pension systems, although a tax increase and other measures have helped.

Moody’s cited “weak management practices” and a recent legislative session that “took no steps to implement lasting solutions.”

Moody’s now rates Illinois “A2,” below any other state. Only one state, California, qualifies for the next-highest rating. All the rest are ranked higher.

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3 Responses to Another Win For Governor Quinn: Illinois Has the Lowest Credit Rating of all the States!

  • Congratulations, Illinois!

    I was TDY at Chanute AFB one winter. That was enough Illinois for me. Although, winter in the TX panhandle was . . .

    When you least expect it, expect it.
    The US is next.

  • Winter in Central Illinois, America’s Siberia at its worst, can indeed be memorable T.Shaw, as I thought to myself one day in 1979 when I was trudging to class at the U of I and found the fabric of my parka beginning to crack in the 37 below zero temperatures.

  • It seemed that only things cutting the wind between the North Pole and Chanute/Champaign-Urbana were barbed wire and outhouses.

Lying Worst Governor in the Country

Monday, December 19, AD 2011

Imagine California without the sunshine, New York without the cultural elan, New Jersey without Chris Christie. That’s Illinois.

I have previously deemed the Governor of Illinois, Patrick Quinn (D.), the worst governor in the country.  Go here to read the post in which I bestowed the title.  After his meeting with the Illinois bishops on Friday December 16, 2011, I have attached “Lying” to his title.  The bishops asked for the meeting to protest the constant pro-abortion advocacy of Quinn.  After the meeting here is what Quinn said:

“A lot of the discussion was how we could work together to fight poverty, help the people who are less fortunate and need a helping hand,” Quinn told the Sun-Times as he left a Christmas toy give-away on the Far South Side. “Getting people jobs, helping people who don’t have enough food to eat — that’s what the church’s social mission is all about.”

This was too much for the bishops and they released the following statement:

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14 Responses to Lying Worst Governor in the Country

  • To our Bishops:

    “…When you are assembled, and my spirit is present, with the power of our Lord Jesus, you are to deliver this man to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus. ” 1st Corinthians 5:4b-5.

    To the “peepul”:

    “When [the crowd of 5000 that had been fed the loaves and fishes] found him on the other side of the sea, they said to him, ‘Rabbi, when did you come here?’ Jesus answered them, ‘Truly, truly, I say to you, you seek me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves. Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of man will give to you; for on him has God the Father set his seal.'” John 6:25-27

    To Governors Quinn and Cuomo:

    “Not every one who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?’ And then will I declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you evildoers.'” Matthew 7:21-23

    PS, Donald, remember that if Patrick Quinn is the worst, then Andy Cuomo is a close second.

  • In NY, even pro-lifers have to run as pro-choicers to win. 6 of the last 7 post-Roe governors were Catholic (Eliot Spizter is the exception). Only the first, Malcolm Wilson, was pro-life. Hugh Carey announced he was pro-life after leaving office. Mario Cuomo famously started the whole “personally pro-life but publicly pro-choice” charade. George Pataki says he was pro-choice but he had a consistent pro-life record. I don’t think David Paterson or Andrew Cuomo even attend Mass regularly. They both supported abortion, gay marriage, and defunding Catholic schools. Paterson’s chief-of-staff was an ex-Jesuit.

  • What on earth is getting into the Bishops these days?! They have our local nuns actually participating in specific parishes– they were doing a musical-chairs thing before, in some pattern I couldn’t catch– my mom’s parish has a priest that actually speaks English well enough to converse with his flock, our new Bishop is actually organizing regular big to-dos for reconciliation, and now these Bishops are actually responding to the “personal conscience” shtick?

    It’s enough to make you break out in hope.

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  • Interestingly enough, Illinois political blogger Rich Miller, hardly a conservative by any definition, had this to say about the bishops’ flap:

    “This is far more about Quinn publicly saying that his Catholic faith is influencing his decisions than about the bishops whacking him over making decisions contrary to that faith.

    “As I’ve noted before, if Quinn accepted an endorsement from, say, the pro-choice Personal PAC and then used that endorsement to justify signing an anti-abortion bill into law, Personal PAC would be outraged and rightly so. This latest uproar isn’t much different.

    “And I say this, by the way, as someone who is not a Catholic and never was. Groups that politicians associate with have a right to defend themselves when politicians use them to justify a position that the groups oppose. It’s really as simple as that.”

    Actually, Paul, I would still rank Quinn a close second to Cuomo for the simple reason that Cuomo, in addition to being pro-abort and pro-gay marriage, ALSO flouts Church teaching on marriage by living openly with a woman to whom he is not married. I have yet to see any indication that Quinn (who has been divorced for over 20 years and has not remarried) is doing the same, other than his having brought a lady friend to his inaugural ball. He does a good job of keeping his private life private.

  • Donald, the Bishops need not even tell this man he is excommunicated from the Catholic Church. Anyone who calls himself a Catholic and supports, accepts or participates in passing Legislations which is anti-God and contrary to the Teaching Authority of the Church, AUTOMATICALLY excommunicates himself/herself from the Church. All these public characters who claim to be Catholic and are championing evil agendas such as abortion, same-sex cohabitations, euthanasia, destruction of the Institution of Matrimony and the latest madness from Planned Parenthood of introducing and encouraging self-abuse which is called mastrubation to our pre-puberty kids are already outside the Catholic Church. Their Bishops or even the Vatican does not have to climb onto the Pulpit to announce this. Every well-informed Catholic knows this quite well. So, Donald, do not berate your Bishops. I have no doubt they told that Governor EXACTLY and CLEARLY that he is outside the Catholic Church, his false claims that he is a Catholic notwithstanding.

  • And it matters not one whit to him Mary, and the bishops go along with the charade and treat him as a member of the flock. Only public excommunication will do for a public official who claims to be a Catholic while publicly defying the teaching of the Church on abortion. The scandal of course is that this problem is almost four decades old in this country and no elected official has been excommunicated for being a pro-abort. The bishops tell us that abortion is the most important moral issue confronting us today, and they are right to say so. However, their actions in this area argue otherwise.

  • I am sad, Donald, to hear that the American Bishops treat these fake Catholics as members of our Holy Catholic Church. They sure need prayers and be humble enough to take the cue from our own Bishops here in Africa. In this our beloved country, Kenya, when we were debating the proposed New Constitution last year, the Catholic Church fought gallantly to have the anti-God and anti-life Clauses which had been imported by your Planned Parenthood via our local American-funded Civil Societies removed from the Draft Constitution . And our Kenyan Bishops and the Catholic Faithful, had full support from the Association of the Members of the Episcopal Conference of Eastern and Central Africa and the Catholic Faithful in all these Countries. Though we lost the battle, thanks to the powerful monetary and logistical support your Government gave to protect those evil Clauses, to the extent that your Vice-President, Biden even came here to personally campaign against us and millions of American dollars were injected onto that effort, our Catholic Public Officials and politicians, including our own President, had the common decency not to defy the Church outright. They instead publicly and repeatedly promised that those Clauses which the Church was dead against, would be deleted once the Constitution was passed into law. Thus far, we are praying they will keep their promise and institute the process of expuging those unacceptable evil Clauses from our Supreme Law.

  • I weep for the involvement of representatives of my country in perpetrating such evil in yours Mary. The Obama administration is the most anti-Catholic administration in our nation’s history, and they are intent on spreading abortion throughout the world. I, and quite a few other Americans, will do our best to defeat him at the polls in November of next year. God willing, we will succeed.

  • Donald, you have no idea how we here in Kenya – the land of his Father – are praying that he losses heavily. Yet, from the start of his campaign, the Red Flags and the Warning Bells were waving and clanging furiously but no one took any notice to ask :::…..who is this man? where did he come from? what is his real Agenda for America and the rest of the World where America has vice-grip control?….. whose “Agent”is is he? The man took America and the world by storm and whipped us into a frenzy of euphoria never witnessed in many, many years since the Hitler dizzying election in Germany. And now, see where we are…. see where America is heading…..As we pray with you also pray for our bleeding Kenya where his Cousin – who forced himself onto us to become the Prime Minister by lying that his victory was stolen – is poised to become our next President next year. And he is a million times worse that your Obama. Over 1 million people died in the post-election violence which he engineered and up to this day, more than 600,000 families are living in tattered tents exposed to the vagaries of Nature, as Internally Displaced Persons, neglected and forgotten. They were chased from their legally owned lands and homes, all their properties burned down and their loved ones murdered viciously. And this very Instigator of these mass atrocities – again with the help of your President – got his name and those of his Collaborators purged from the Evidence submitted to the International Criminal Court and instead it is the Victims who are now facing trial at the Hague falsely labelled the Aggressors. That is yet more evil and misery Obama has brought to the land of his Father.

  • I will certainly pray for your beautiful country Mary. Corrupt and evil politicians are a bane the world over.

  • They may be corrupt and evil, but Kenya’s politicians have not perpetrated a Khmer Rouge-scale death happening. Mary is exaggerating 800-fold.


  • I am saddened by you comments, Art Deco. Ethnic Cleansing in my country started in 1992, was repeated in 1997 on a larger scale and part of 1998. We were lucky in Year 2002, or so we thought. After getting rid of the KANU Party which had turned murderous after the attempted Coup of 1982, which was organized by the man we now call our Prime Minister, we were soon disillusioned when the he and his followers in the Government, started causing instability in the Government, yet our new President had come into power a sick man after a miraculous escape from death in a stage-managed car accident in the Campaigns a few months before the December 2002 Elections. From 1995 Campaign of the new Constitution, the stage was set for a major destabilization of our country along tribal lines. When the 2007 Election campaigns started the entire Nation was polarized completely and the stage was set for the major Ethnic Cleansing after the December 2007 Elections.

    If you believe I am exaggerating, Art Deco, the whole world was witness to the worst murder, arson and displacements of more than 600,000 families. The entire International Media witnessed everything. So, Art Deco, you need not believe me. Believe what the International Media filmed and recorded live as the violence erupted all over the Capital City and other major Towns, especially in our largest Province – Rift Valley – which was the empicentre of the Ethnic Cleansing which had been started in 1992. Thank you, Donald for promising to pray for us. I have been well-informed about Kenya’s Politics since I first voted as a young married bride in 1957, and the political plecibite we are about to face again during next year’s Elections calls for a miracle to avert another catastrophe. Granted, we have never approached the murderous scale of the Khmer Rouge, Art Deco, but when over 3 million people are killed in a short period of 15 years in Ethnic Cleansing, we have genuine grounds to be worried and ask for Prayers from people of goodwill like Donald.

11 Responses to Blagojevich Gets 14 years

  • I am not surprised. What politician from Illinois is not corrupt?. Can anybody tell?

  • I remember when he tried to get on a reality show in the middle of his trial. Maybe reality will finally catch up with him.

  • More likely than not, other corrupt pols in Illinois are either thinking about ways to legally achieve the same results (oodles of campaign cash) as Blago, or more creative ways to avoid getting caught.

    As for what politician from Illinois is NOT corrupt, I can think of a few examples from the recent past. Sen. Peter Fitzgerald, for example, a Republican who preceded Obama in the seat that later became the subject of Blago’s “sale”. He was pro-life and generally conservative, and was most responsible for getting Patrick Fitzgerald (no relation), the man who eventually prosecuted Blago, appointed U.S. attorney.

    Likewise, I do not believe the current governor, Democrat Pat Quinn, is corrupt in the legal/criminal sense (i.e. directly soliciting bribes as Blago did). However, non-corruption alone does not a statesman make. He is incompetent, waffling, and very messed up in his notion of Catholic moral teaching. As far as basic competence and in potential damage to state (and especially Catholic) institutions, arguably Quinn is as bad or worse than Blago.

    In theory, Blago could end up as a cellmate of his predecessor, George Ryan, who is currently in the federal pen at Terre Haute, Ind. and has a year left to go on HIS sentence. However, since Blago’s sentence is over 10 years he will most likely be sent to a slightly higher security institution than Ryan and not a “Club Fed”.

  • “I am not surprised. What politician from Illinois is not corrupt?. Can anybody tell?”

    The same could be said of NYS where I once lived. They are, however, good at not getting caught, but not always so good at avoiding scandal. Can you spell Anthony Weiner?

  • I have a dream.

    In a couple years you will read this headline. “Obama Gets 50 Years to Life for Stealing $3 trillion Dollars and Wrecking America.”

  • “Obama Gets 50 Years to Life for Stealing $3 trillion Dollars and Wrecking America.”

    What does he get for authorizing the indiscriminate murder of the unborn and the sanctification of homosexual filth?

  • Dante would provide a specific trench in the Inferno for Obama, Biden, Pelosi, Sibellius, Teddy Chappaquidick, et al.

  • A commenter at one of my favorite Illinois political junkie blogs said this today: Blago’s sentence amounts to about 30 seconds for each of his 13 million victims (Illinois residents).

    Actually, Dante did assign a specific trench in the Inferno to “grafters,” i.e. corrupt rulers/politicians, who spend eternity immersed in boiling tar, symbolic of their “sticky fingers.” At one point a demon shows up bearing one of “Santa Zita’s elders,” an alderman from the Italian city of Lucca, where “no is yes, and yes is no, for a fee” — the 13th century version of “pay to play.”

  • 13th century – 21st century – it’s all the same.

  • 13th century – 21st century – it’s all the same.

    Human-nature wise, yeah. (And, as it’s popular to notice once again, politics is very much about human nature.)

Illinois is Economic Road-Kill

Sunday, November 6, AD 2011

This can be considered a companion piece to my worst governor post which may be read here.  The video above  consists of selections from a speech by author Joel Kotkin to the Illinois Policy Institute explaining some of the ways in which the powers that be in Illinois have made the state completely uncompetitive with other states in producing sustained private sector economic growth.  If I were starting out I would leave Illinois.  Nothing good is going to be happening in this state economically for a very long time.  The leadership of the state is completely blind to our problems and promote policies that drive businesses away and sink Illinois deeper in a fiscal morass.  Illinois’ woes are completely man-made, and Illinois, thanks to a majority of the Illinois voters, remains wedded to a model of high government expenditure, hostility to private enterprise and unending political corruption that makes effective reform for at least the next three years a pipe dream.

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23 Responses to Illinois is Economic Road-Kill

  • And to add insult to injury, you’re stuck with the Cubs, White Sox and Jay Cutler. My sympathies, Don. Up here in WI, at least we have the Pack and a contending Brewer team. Plus, Walker’s tough budget moves and restraints on public unions have worked. The budget is damn near balanced and companies are starting to take a hard look at WI for relocation/expansion, bypassing Illinois. If you can stand the harsh winters, come on up!

  • My mother-in-law lives up in Kenosha Joe and we visit her each year in August. If I didn’t have a fairly thriving practice after 26 years effort, I would have immigrated to the Land of Cheese this year!

  • Funny you should bring up this topic, Don, because of late I have begun to contemplate, for the first time in my life, whether it might not be wise for me and my family to move out of Illinois in the long term, say, after our daughter finishes high school (a huge move since neither of us has ever lived anywhere but in central or north-central Illinois and we have no friends or relatives living anywhere else).

    However, it’s not because of the tax increase, economic policy or even rampant government corruption (corruption may be less frequent elsewhere, but it does still happen). It’s because of the state’s apparent surrender to what Mark Shea calls the “gay brownshirts” and the abortion lobby. We’ve all heard about Catholic Charities being forced out of the adoption and foster care business, which is bad enough.

    A few days ago, on another blog (which I unfortunately can’t seem to find right now) I caught a post by someone IDing themselves as a licensed social worker in Illinois, saying they have heard rumors within their agency that the state will eventually require all social workers, as a condition of licensure, to agree that they will refer women for abortions if requested and that they will be willing to place children with gay couples.

    Now granted, this is just one anonymous blog post and it is just a rumor, so nothing may come of it. But I can’t help but wonder if there is a day coming when agreeing to endorse gay marriage and/or abortion will become a condition of state employment, or worse yet, of obtaining teacher certification, and if that happens, then we and all observant Catholic residents of Illinois are really screwed.

    The only question is, where to go? Is Cheesehead Land really a safe refuge, considering that Walker COULD be recalled and the crazy leftists could still take everything back? St. Louis isn’t too far away and looks kind of attractive but their economy, crime rate, etc. don’t look too promising. Indiana, Kentucky or Tennessee I could probably handle but again, not sure what the job prospects are. I don’t handle extreme heat or humidity very well so I’m not considering Texas or Florida or Arizona at this point. Again, all this is just speculating out loud and may never happen but I’d be interested in hearing any ideas.

  • Our poor Illinois is in a sad state Elaine. Long term I am optimistic on both the political front and the economic front, far more long term on the economic front, but short term optimism is not called for. I would probably go for west central Indiana myself, probably just right across the Illinois border as being similar to my beloved central Illinois. I was born and reared in Paris, so I was going across into Indiana all the time when I was growing up.

  • If I had the money and another 20 years, I’d follow Jesse Ventura to Mexico; better yet, Costa Rica. America is no longer the land I grew up in, sad to say.

  • The moral bankruptcy is worse.

    BUT: The bankrupt red states’ bonds must be repaid (from whence they’re killing the private sector?) or refinanced at much higher interest rates (consistent with excessively high default risks). Then, the US fiscal scam will be kaput like Greece, Italy, Spain, Ireland, Portugal have doomed the Eurozone to fiscal and monetary ruin.

    Short everything, except gold and guns.

    Go Jets!

  • I suspect that the blue states’ marriage to their ruinous economic policies is based on
    a belief that if/when the crash comes, the federal government will provide a bailout.
    In other words, the taxpayers of the more prudent states will pick up the tab for the
    negligence and irresponsibility of states like Illinois and California.

    It is a given that by that time, the politicians and bureaucrats responsible for the mess
    will have moved on and up. It will fall to others to clean up behind them, if they are
    even left with the financial means. Illinois will have exported its malaise to the other
    states. In the end, if federal bailouts of failed states happen, there will be nowhere
    in America that one can move to escape the effects.

  • “There will be nowhere in America that one can move to escape the effects”

    Of an economic collapse, yes, but I’m thinking more of a place one can escape the worst effects of aggressive liberal social engineering policies apparently designed to drive Catholics and evangelical Christians out of public life altogether. Or will we eventually not be able to escape THAT anywhere, even in reliably red states? If that’s the case, nowhere in North America will be safe (Canada is way worse in this regard already, and I’m not even gonna think about Mexico until they get the drug cartels under control).

  • Federal monies always come with strings attached. If our betters in Washington
    insist on taking our tax dollars to bail out failed blue states, you can count on
    them insisting that all states must submit to increased oversight and interference
    from the federal government.

    At least, if I were a fellow traveller with this administration, that’s how I’d play it.
    So if I’m anywhere near right, Mrs. Krewer, there will be nowhere in the 50 states
    to run to.

  • (Quietly pondering the destiny of arguably the greatest nation the world has ever seen – slowly slipping beneath the waves? )
    Long term I think (and hope) the USA will return to its core strengths and principles, wnich in many/most states it is failing to do right now. The pendulum swings – where is it right now?
    How many of the US states could well carry the label ” The Socialist Soviet of…………….” ?
    I suspect many more than is good for their economy and longevity.
    The South Pacific – despite our own issues – seems pretty good right now 🙂

  • Way, way too much gloom and doom in this thread! The great thing about man made disasters is that they have man made solutions. Time to roll up our sleeves and fight the political battles that need to be fought. A great start was made in 2010. Pro-life legislation is coming to the forefront in state after state, along with needed fiscal reform in many states. The economic policies promoted by our political adversaries are completely bankrupt, literally, and people are ready to listen to alternatives. This is a time of opportunity if we can only take advantage of it.

  • Sorry, Don, Spengler was right. We’re in the winter of decline. We are no longer one nation, one people. Multiculturalism has taken over and the results are disastrous as Europe is discovering. We will be destroyed by the vandals from within, as Lincoln said.

  • Spengler was as wrong Joe as his turgid tomes were snooze inducing. We are not in decline, any more than we were in decline during our Civil War when 620,000 Americans were killed fighting each other, or in the American Revolution when 20-30% of the poulation fought the British. One good thing about studying real history, rather than that Teutonic pessimism with an historical wrapper that Oswald Spengler was peddling, is that it gives one the ability to step back from one’s time and take a look at it from a broader perspective than is possible of attainment when we view events solely from a current stance.

    (For those wondering who the heck is Spengler?:


  • We are not in decline.

    Don, choose to ignore all the jeremiads, but as the prophet wrote:

    How doth the city sit solitary, that was full of people! how is she become as a widow! she that was great among the nations, and princess among the provinces, how is she become tributary!
    She weepeth sore in the night, and her tears are on her cheeks: among all her lovers she hath none to comfort her: all her friends have dealt treacherously with her, they are become her enemies.

  • And the Jews are still with us Joe, and Israel has arisen from the ashes. Jeremiads are all well and good for any society, but they tell only part of the story.

  • Don, when you get older you’ll lose your optimism, trust me.

  • I’m 54 now Joe. As I have grown older I have grown more optimistic.

  • Optimism is the madness of insisting that all is well when we are miserable.
    (not your favorite philospher, I’m sure)

  • Indeed Joe. One of Voltaire’s favorite sayings was: “Lie, lie and lie! Some of the lies will stick!”

    Considering the life that François-Marie Arouet lived, I think pessimism as he neared his personal judgment with God was an understandable reaction in his case.

    I prefer this sally from a sinner, Oscar Wilde, who died repentant and embracing mother Church:

    “Pessimist: One who, when he has the choice of two evils, chooses both.’

  • I realize that Joe is an agnostic so this may not mean much to him yet, but for those of us who are Christians, even the end of the world is not the end of the world 🙂

    It also helps me to remember something C.S. Lewis wrote in “The Weight of Glory”:

    “There are no ordinary people. You have never talked to a mere mortal. Nations, cultures, arts, civilizations — these are mortal, and their life is to ours as the life of a gnat. But it is immortals whom we joke with, work with, marry, snub, and exploit — immortal horrors or everlasting splendours.”

  • Don, Wilde was semi-comatose on his deathbed and a priest was sent for. Apparently baptized as a child, the priest was reluctant to baptize him again but reportedly did so. Whether he was aware of the last rites is in question. This was the same made who uttered:

    ‘I think that God in creating Man somewhat overestimated his ability.’

    Spot on, Oscar.

  • Actually Joe before he became ill he had attempted to go on a retreat with the Jesuits. His desire to embrace the Church was no mere death bed fancy. Here is what the priest said who attended him in his last hours:

    “As the voiture rolled through the dark streets that wintry night, the sad story of Oscar Wilde was in part repeated to me….Robert Ross knelt by the bedside, assisting me as best he could while I administered conditional baptism, and afterwards answering the responses while I gave Extreme Unction to the prostrate man and recited the prayers for the dying. As the man was in a semi-comatose condition, I did not venture to administer the Holy Viaticum; still I must add that he could be roused and was roused from this state in my presence. When roused, he gave signs of being inwardly conscious… Indeed I was fully satisfied that he understood me when told that I was about to receive him into the Catholic Church and gave him the Last Sacraments… And when I repeated close to his ear the Holy Names, the Acts of Contrition, Faith, Hope and Charity, with acts of humble resignation to the Will of God, he tried all through to say the words after me.”

    Here is a good article on the long conversion of Oscar Wilder:


  • Interesting read, Don. Thanks for the link. Although I wouldn’t place him in the highest strata of English lit, which would include Dickens, Hardy and Kipling, Wilde is a rung below and left a few masterpieces.

    As for deathbed converts, alleged or otherwise, the list is long, starting with The Good Thief, down through Constantine, Antonio Gramsci (debatable), Wallace Stevens, King Charles II. Others who supposedly “saw the light” at the end were said to include Charles Darwin (though he daughter denied it) and Jean-Paul Satrre (to Judaism).

    Bishop Sheen tells of a deathbed conversion in his autobiography, Treasure in Clay, where he repeatedly visited a dying cancer patient in the hospital who kept telling him to “get the hell out.” Sheen says the man called on Jesus just before he expired, according to a nurse.

Worst Governor in the Country

Friday, November 4, AD 2011



In a crowded field, Pat Quinn, Democrat Governor of Illinois, can now officially be proclaimed the worst governor in the United States.

He has been vying for the title ever since he took over from impeached and removed Governor Blagojevich, currently bound for a long stay in federal prison.  Since taking over from his felon predecessor, he has the following accomplishments to his discredit:

In a midnight session of  the lame duck legislature in January of this year he increased, in the midst of the worst economic slump since World War II, Illinois personal income taxes by 67-75%, and, as a result, the misgoverned state of Illinois became a national laughingstock.

He rammed through civil unions last year in December in another action of the lame duck legislature.

Quinn  got elected last year by a razor thin margin  largely by under the radar last minute internet ads posted by Personal PAC, a pro-abort lobbying group, headed by a Terry Cosgrove. As payback Quinn appointed Cosgrove to a $46,000 a year job on the Human Rights Commission.  Lake County Right to Life has good coverage on this story which may be read here.  Regular Guy Paul has been on top of the story at his blog here.

Now I happen to know Cosgrove from the days back in the Seventies when we were both attending the U of I. He is a lapsed Catholic, now a militant atheist, homosexual activist and fanatical pro-abort. He was head of the local campus pro-aborts and I was one of the founders of L.I.F.E. (Life Is For Everyone), the campus pro-life group. One time I saw Cosgrove at Mass circa 1980 at the Newman Chapel, at Saint John’s. Puzzled why he was there, after Mass I found out why. At the pamphlet rack in the back I saw that he had stuffed pro-abort obscene anti-Catholic pamphlets. I disposed of them. He also said in one memorable public forum that he carried a gun to defend himself against “militant anti-choicers”, as he phrased pro-lifers.  Quinn appointed him to the Illinois Human Rights Commission in April of this year. That a bigot like Cosgrove now has a seat on the Human Rights Commission in Illinois has a nice Orwellian touch.

Now Quinn has outdone himself and seized the title of worst governor.  As further payback to Cosgrove and his pro-abort pressure group, Quinn is going to attend the annual fund raising dinner for Personal Pac and present an award.  When challenged on this by every Catholic bishop in the State, and Cardinal George,  the ostensibly Catholic Quinn responded that giving the award was the “Christian thing to do.”  (Quinn obviously must have a unique gloss on the statement of Christ, “Suffer the little children…”.)

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36 Responses to Worst Governor in the Country

  • A great analysis, Don, and you recognized the payback aspect of the awards ceremony which wasn’t mentioned by the bishops.

    Interestingly enough, when Rich Miller of Capitol Fax first got on this story Wednesday he called the Catholic Conference of Illinois for clarification regarding whether or not Quinn was being barred from Communion (Miller is not Catholic). The reply he got was that the bishops were not banning him, but “an individual priest can refuse Quinn Communion.” If that’s the case then maybe the bishops are giving the green light to priests to do just that, or at least letting it be known that they will not object if some priest chooses to do so.

  • Thank you Elaine, and your observation about the comment about priests is correct. However, the bishops should not lay this on the shoulders of a priest to decide. Quinn is an ongoing public scandal of epic proportions in the State, not some petty miscreant who can be best left to his local parish priest.

  • “In a crowded field, Pat Quinn, Democrat Governor of Illinois, can now officially be proclaimed the worst governor in the United States.”

    I don’t know about that. He’s got some tough competition from Governor Andy Cuomo. The Bishops must publicly excommunicate politicians like Quinn and Cuomo. The precedence of how St. Paul dealt with Hymenaeus and Alexander in 1st Timothy 1:19-20 rings loudly and clearly.

  • Given the rogues gallery of Illinois governors, Don, does any of this surprise you?

  • BTW, Don, there are a lot of unionistas north of you border who would love to trade Walker for Quinn.

  • They are more than welcome to him Joe! Almost all Illinois politicians since Abraham Lincoln have managed to live down to my expectations, but Quinn is working overtime to be even worse than I would have imagined before he was raised from gadfly to governor.

  • I wonder if the bishops of Illinois would actually stand behind any priests that denied
    Holy Communion to the Governor. If the press turned too ugly, it would be awfully
    tempting for them to leave the priest twisting in the wind. If they truly were committed
    to standing behind their men, wouldn’t they say so publicly?

    I’m glad that all of the bishops of the state have come together to protest the Governor’s
    actions. However, I cannot help but think that this protest is just the least bothersome
    thing the bishops can do and still show their faces in public. Actually addressing the
    continuing public scandal of pro-abortion CINO politicians seems to be more of an
    inconvenience than the bishops of this country are willing to take on.

    It amazes me that in the 40 years since Roe v. Wade the bishops have yet to come up
    with a coherent, well-articulated and unified response to the ongoing scandal of these
    cynical, pro-abortion CINO politicians. I can only conclude that it is because it is not
    really a priority for them.

  • The oddity is that uneducated Catholic teenage girls in Rio and Bogota and Uganda who have abortions are excommunicated latae sentenciae and don’t know it. And a pro gay, pro abortion educated Catholic pol in an enabling position can’t get excommunicated by Pope or Bishops….no matter how hard he tries. Could it be time for Benedict to meet with a management consultancy
    firm? I often think that there is a standing memo in the Vatican for Popes to punish no one….because such active ruling would make the mass movements of Protestants back to the Church less likely (e.g. Anclicans). if so, it’s a mistake ala Paul’s example noted by Paul above.

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  • “… a pro gay, pro abortion educated Catholic pol in an enabling position can’t get excommunicated by Pope or Bishops….no matter how hard he tries… I often think that there is a standing memo in the Vatican for Popes to punish no one….”

    Punish no one … except the orthodox faithful when they get too uppity about calling Bishops on the carpet for failing to enforce the teachings of the Church. Then they get called names by our bishops and are told that they are “divisive” or “Judgmental” or “uncharitable” or “sinful” and are accused of doing “irreparable damage to the communion of the Church”. Or they get railroaded off of Catholic radio programs.

    As I once wrote in the context of the bishops’ backlash against faithful Catholics in the wake (no pun intended) of the Ted Kennedy funeral/canonization:

    I wonder if our shepherds REALLY believe about abortion what they proclaim to be the Church’s teaching on the matter. I know that pro-lifers have taken them at their word, and have sacrificed their time, treasure, talent, and reputations – and even, in some cases, voting against our own economic best interests – to work on behalf of the unborn.

    And, for that, pro-lifers have been rewarded with scorn. I expect as much from the mainstream media, from the Democrat Party, and even from the Republican Party, which takes the pro-life movement for granted, pretty much only paying attention to our concerns during election years.

    But from our Bishops? Again, why do we even bother?

  • Quinn has a wopping 30% approval rating according to a recent poll:


    Way to go every voter in the aptly named Sucker State who saddled us with this jackass for the next three years!

  • I don’t believe it is the Pope’s job to micromanage one billion Catholics and thousands
    of bishops. The scandal of the bishops’ avoidance of concrete action regarding these
    pro-abortion CINO politicians is no one’s fault but the bishops’. They are squandering
    their moral authority and credibility by refusing to take any sort of meaningful action.

    As Mr. McClarey said in his post above, Gov. Quinn is not in the least inconvenienced by
    this latest episcopal tut-tutting. In fact, it enhances his credentials in the rabidly pro-
    abortion Democrat party. If it were determined that Gov. Quinn should be barred the
    Sacraments until he repents and does penance, at least the faithful would be spared
    his scandal, the pro-life laity would be encouraged, and the bishops would be seen to
    take their obligations as shepherds seriously and the erosion of their credibility would

  • Indeed Clinton. Cut him off from the sacraments and publicly state that he is no longer a Catholic in good standing. The Church has condemned abortion since the time of Christ. This type of lackadaisical attitude is further evidence that what has traditionally been the Church Militant is now the Church Mushy. Additionally the Church has a duty to sinners, even to one as far gone as Quinn. The purpose of excommunication has never been to punish, but rather to recognize that someone has cut himself off by his actions from the Bride of Christ. Who knows, perhaps in Quinn’s case it might even cause him to repent. Certainly excommunication has had that impact on sinners even worse that Quinn.

  • “If it were determined that Gov. Quinn should be barred the Sacraments until he repents and does penance, at least the faithful would be spared his scandal, the pro-life laity would be encouraged, and the bishops would be seen to take their obligations as shepherds seriously and the erosion of their credibility would cease.”

    That’s the whole point. There is so much Scriptural precedence for this. Ananias and Sapphira were dropped dead on the spot in Acts 5:1-11. The man living with his father’s wife in 1st Corinthians 5 was kicked out till he repented in 2nd Corinthians 2:5-11. Hymenaeus and Alexander were turned over to Satan in 1st Timothy 1:19-20 to be taught not to blaspheme. And Jezebel in Revelation 2:20-23 was told that she’d be put on a sick bed and her children killed for teaching people at the Church in Thyatira to commit adultery and eat meat sacrificed to idols.

    But most of today’s bishops in these United States don’t really BELIEVE in the power of God, so they don’t really take Scripture seriously (nor for that matter the 2000 years of Tradition in the Church or the teaching of the Magisterium unless it’s something about promoting social justice). There are exceptions here and there. But until the Bishops as a whole throw Andy Cuomo, Patrick Quinn, John Kerry, Joe Biden, Patrick Leahy, Dennis Kucinich, Kathleen Sebelius and all the rest out of the Church publicly, all their protestations are smoke in the wind which dissipates quickly as things return to “normal.” And furthermore, if the bishops do NOT kick these apostates out, then God will prune His Church exactly as described in Romans 11. The branches that don’t produce fruit will be cut off to make way for those who do. God’s will will be done no matter what, either with the bishops cooperating with God’s justice or with the bishops finding themselves pruned off because they wouldn’t cooperate God’s justice. And yes, God’s justice is His love – justice had to be dumped on the head of that man in the Church at Corinth before he stopped his sexual perversion and that was LOVE. Being nice ain’t love at all (“oh, you must really love your Dad if you’re taking care of his wife that way! – St. Paul had a virtual conniption fit about that excuse); it’s only confirming the person in sin so that his slide into hell can be all greased up. Bishops who do that would do well to remember Ezekiel 34:1-10.

    Lord deliver us from liberal weak-kneed, yellow bellied, cowardly, effeminate clerics!

  • Clinton
    If a Pope has time to write three scholarly books in 6 years, I think he has time to do a tad bit of micro managing on this issue after decades of Bishop indecision on pols…an issue, abortion, which is now clearly infallibly condemned in section 62 of Evangelium Vitae so as to pass muster in Church courts under canon 749-3. Few moral issues actually have that clearly manifest infallibilty.
    Canon law (331) talks of his power thus:
    “By virtue of his office he possesses supreme, full, immediate, and universal ordinary power in the Church, which he is always able to exercise freely.”

    Is it easy emotionally to use that power in a phone call to a Bishop and then ask him to call you back in two weeks with what he did on the problem? I’ll bet not. I wish he’d call the Jesuit head about Georgetown and tell them to stop the lavender graduations for the glbt group there.
    But as I say…I wonder if they think Protestants will never return if Popes use that power…but will return if Popes never micro manage. If so, it’s a mistake.

  • Bill,

    How much would the Pope know about the details of these issues? Otherwise, I am inclined to agree with you. I find it fascinating and dismay that – for example – hundred of Irish clerics can defy the Church over married priesthood, contraceptives, etc. This is happening most everywhere because the problem was never nipped in the bud when it first appeared.

  • Paul
    I’m sure at the CDF Benedict got thousands of letters on the pro choice pols in the US for years ever since Cuomo and Ferraro. On other moral issues, there is not the crystal clear infallibility that abortion now has.
    Read canon 749-3. Abortion and euthanasia now pass that manifest clarity test.

  • Mr. Primavera, you list several examples of corrections administered in scripture. I
    would also like to mention the chastisement St. Ambrose administered to a political
    figure of his day. Around 390 AD there was an uprising in a city in Thessalonica.
    Several Roman officers were killed and the Christian emperor Theodosius ordered
    reprisals. During a festival held in the city Roman soldiers sealed the exits of the
    amphitheater and slaughtered the 7000 men, women, and children inside.

    News of the massacre soon reached Milan, St. Ambrose’s diocese and the current
    residence of the emperor. When the emperor attempted to enter the cathedral to
    attend Mass, St. Ambrose barred him at the door and forbade him to enter any
    church until he both repented taking innocent lives and did public penance. Mind
    you, St. Ambrose was facing down a powerful man who had killed 7000 people just
    to make a point. As it was, the emperor did repent and did his penance.

    About 1300 years after St. Ambrose’s confrontation with the emperor, Peter Paul
    Reubens depicted the scene in a magnificent painting that now hangs in Britain’s
    National Gallery. Somehow I doubt that 1300 years hence any artists will be
    commemorating our bishops’ feeble handwringing in response to the scandal of
    all these cynical pro-abortion CINO politicians we’re saddled with.

  • “The conflict between David and Nathan, and other such examples in the Bible, placed into the Western mind the concept of a body outside the State always judging the actions of the State. This is an all-important development for Western notions of freedom. The Greek democracies and republics eventually collapsed into rule by divinized Hellenic monarchs after the death of Alexander. Those republics and democracies that were not directly ruled were rendered impotent and subject to constant threat of conquest by the sprawling absolute monarchies established by the Diadochi. The Roman Republic suffered the same fate, collapsing during the chaotic century before Christ into the rule by Augustus Caesar and his successors which eventually developed into absolute rule by divinized God-Emperors.

    With the advent of Christianity as the state religion of the Roman Empire, this changed. Emperors were now held to account for their actions, as Theodosius was after the massacre of Thessalonica by Saint Ambrose. The State could no longer be held to be all-powerful, even in theory. The Church stood as a constant reminder to rulers that they had to answer to God for the actions, and the Church often served as a rallying point against a ruler who was becoming a tyrant. It is interesting that the doctrine of the divine right of kings, came about only after the Reformation, when Luther made his new church an arm of the state in order to secure a break with Rome. In the Middle Ages, the idea that the King was head of the Church as well as the State, would have been regarded as blatant heresy. The coronation oaths that Kings took in the Middle Ages obliged them to protect the rights of the Church, and it was the Church that administered the sacred chrism necessary for the coronation ceremony.”


    “During a crisis within the Roman Empire, Emperor Theodosius I slaughtered 7,000 of his own citizens in 390 AD. Shortly after this massacre Emperor Theodosius arrived in Milan where Saint Ambrose resided as bishop. Upon hearing of the emperors arrival Saint Ambrose refused to meet nor offer the Holy Sacrifice to him. Instead he castigated the emperor and demanded he repent for his sins.

    Emperor Theodosius quickly obeyed [emphasis mine],

    “and, being laid hold of by the discipline of the Church, did penance in such a way that the sight of his imperial loftiness prostrated made the people who were interceding for him weep more than the consciousness of offence had made them fear it when enraged”. “Stripping himself of every emblem of royalty”, says Ambrose in his funeral oration, “he publicly in church bewailed his sin. That public penance, which private individuals shrink from, an Emperor was not ashamed to perform; nor was there afterwards a day on which he did not grieve for his mistake.”[1]

    Ted Kennedy was the leading proponent of abortion on demand.

    Millions of innocent humans died due to the policies that Ted Kennedy championed.

    Ted Kennedy passed away without repenting nor showing remorse for his direct actions in the death of millions.

    Instead of performing his duty as Archbishop of Boston and teaching Ted Kennedy the errors of his ways, Cardinal O’Malley does absolutely nothing and then presides at his funeral.

    Saint Ambrose, ora pro nobis!”


  • Well said, Mac!

    Bell, book, and candle: the rite of excommunication concluded with the offer to the reprobate to burst the fetters of the demon, to do penance and to satisfy the (Teachings of the) Church so as to return to a state of grace.

    The theological virtues are Faith, Hope and Love. The greatest of these is Love. I think St. Paul.

    Is it Charity to do nothing as a sinner hurdles headlong down the express lanes of the road to perdition?

  • I wonder what a man like this thinks when he looks at the Body of our Lord in Communion. Does he think it is truly the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus contained in a common piece of bread. If this is true, why is it a stretch for him to believe a unique human being is contained in any stage after conception in the womb of it’s mother?

    Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

  • Thank you, Donald and Clinton. I would remind Clinton, however, that if it weren’t for the ascendency of godless liberalism, there would be no CINO’s (Conservatives in Name Only).

    Sancte Ambrosie, Ora pro nobis!

  • Opps, it occurred to me as I was just cleaning the bathroom (how appropriate!) that CINO is likely an acronym for “Catholic In name Only” or “Christian In Name Only” vice “Conservative In Name Only”. I apologize for the error (CINOs exist with regard to political persuasion) and will now return to cleaning the toilet bowl and kitter litter as I contemplate the acronym “CINO.”


  • Mr. Primavera, the fault is all mine. Looking back at my comment, I realize that I
    never made it clear that my use of the CINO acronym stood for “Catholic in Name
    Only”. In that context, cat boxes and toilet bowls are most appropriate.

  • For those of you not familiar with recent Illinois political history, Quinn is regarded by many as a prime example of someone who has become exactly the kind of person he used to despise.

    Early in his career he was often described as a populist “gadfly”. In the late 70s, after legislators outraged the public by voting themselves a substantial pay raise, Quinn led a successful drive to reduce the number of Illinois House members by 1/3. He also helped establish a consumer watchdog body called the Citizens Utility Board. He was also known for NOT living high off the hog as many politicians do — he drives older vehicles, stays in Super 8 motels on his own dime when traveling, etc.

    Today, however, he’s wiped out almost all of the populist/reformer cred he once had. One of the more interesting “Questions of the Day” that Rich Miller sometimes posts on his blog is “What would the young Pat Quinn say if he met his current self?” If he’s lapsed that far from his former political ideals it should come as no surprise that he’s lapsed even farther from the ideals of his faith, such as it is.

  • Don

    A prediction please, what will come first:

    The state of Illinois will have honest politicians we can be proud of?

    The Cubs will become a consistent championship team?

    A cow will jump over the moon?

    The Second Coming?


    Even by Democratic Party standards Quinn has always been a gadfly. A popular gadfly which is why he ended up in the do nothing job of Lieutenant Governor. Perhaps an honest one he actually believes the democratic parry line which I suspect he thinks has more truth than the Church. A real crook might realize when he hit the point of diminishing personal financial returns, Quinn will just keep on pushing. He has failed to live up to even my low expectations.

    Hank’s Eclectic Meanderings

  • Why is it that so many expect our bishops to grow backbones and stand up to the current corrupt world? If you read that the USCCB [through its bureaucrats] has taken a position, you will know from experience that the bishops have passed the buck. The USCCB has no authority. It is each bishop in his diocese who has authority. It seems that they are horrified at this thought, and would rather spend their time abusing the sheep who complain.
    Alas that they are so little believers in Our Lord that they believe not what awaits those who neglect their sheep.

  • Hank, my wise guy reaction would be to bet on the cow! However, I do have some admiration for Congressman Adam Kinzinger.


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  • Why do Catholics in Illinois continue to vote for politicians who espouse the liberal/progressive (anti-Catholic teaching) social agenda? Maybe it is a matter of leadership. Read this article.

  • We need greater catechesis among our young people.

  • “Why do Catholics in Illinois continue to vote for politicians who espouse the liberal/progressive (anti-Catholic teaching) social agenda? ”

    It would be more accurate to say “Why do Catholics IN CHICAGO AND THE SUBURBS continue to vote for politicians…” Quinn didn’t get all that many Catholic votes, or all that many votes period, outside of the Chicago metro area. He lost in 98 of Illinois’ 102 counties — but the 3 that he won included Cook County, which due to its population, trumps almost all the others. The same problem is evident in other states such as New York and California that are dominated by 1 or 2 major cities.

  • I’d like to refer everyone to Dr. Edward Peters’ column on the issue of the bishops’
    response to Gov. Quinn and politicians of his ilk. The link Canon Law by Dr. Ed
    can be found to the right, just below The American Catholic’s
    archives. Dr. Peters, of course, is an expert on canon law and was recently invited
    to advise the Apostolic Signatura, one of only six such invitees and the only layman
    so invited. I’d heed what he has to say on the matter.

  • Quinn didn’t get all that many Catholic votes, or all that many votes period, outside of the Chicago metro area. He lost in 98 of Illinois’ 102 counties — but the 3 that he won included Cook County, which due to its population, trumps almost all the others.

    I think you are generally right about that. Illinois shares with New York, Massachusetts, and several other states the unfortunate property of being assemblages of incongruous components with some functioning as tributaries to the main.

    Quinn is regarded by many as a prime example of someone who has become exactly the kind of person he used to despise.

    Funny about George Ryan, too. He was a reasonably capable businessman from Downstate Illinois and ended up puking money into the school systems, embarking on public works bonanzas, and running a one-man crime wave. He even corrupted his daughters in the process.

  • Art, Ryan was always corrupt. He comes from Kankakee County which is adjacent to Livingston County where I live, and everyone around here knew that Ryan was on the take long before he became Governor. That is why when he ran I voted for Glen Poshard, his pro-life Democrat opponent. Illinois could have been saved a lot of grief if Poshard had managed to beat Ryan in 98.

  • The people deserve the government they get. And boy oh boy, with the likes of Quinn in Illinois, Cuomo in NY, Perdue in NC, Brown in CA, etc., we are going to get what we deserve.


    Pro dolorosa Eius passione, miserere nobis et totius mundi!

Teach One Day And Get A Pension

Sunday, October 23, AD 2011

2 Responses to Teach One Day And Get A Pension

Governor Quinn of Illinois Appoints Anti-Catholic Bigot to Human Rights Commission

Wednesday, April 13, AD 2011

The Governor of Illinois is Pat Quinn, a Roman Catholic and 100% pro-abort. He got elected last year by a razor thin margin  largely by under the radar last minute internet ads posted by Personal PAC, a pro-abort lobbying group, headed by a Terry Cosgrove. As payback Quinn appointed Cosgrove to a $46,000 a year job on the Human Rights Commission.  Lake County Right to Life has good coverage on this story which may be read here.  Regular Guy Paul has been on top of the story at his blog here.

Now I happen to know Cosgrove from the days back in the Seventies when we were both attending the U of I. He is a lapsed Catholic, now a militant atheist, homosexual activist and fanatical pro-abort. He was head of the local campus pro-aborts and I was one of the founders of L.I.F.E. (Life Is For Everyone), the campus pro-life group. One time I saw Cosgrove at Mass circa 1980 at the Newman Chapel, at Saint John’s. Puzzled why he was there, after Mass I found out why. At the pamphlet rack in the back I saw that he had stuffed pro-abort anti-Catholic pamphlets. I disposed of them. He also said in one memorable public forum that he carried a gun to defend himself against “militant anti-choicers”, as he phrased pro-lifers. That a bigot like Cosgrove now has a seat on the Human Rights Commission in Illinois has a nice Orwellian touch.  Challenged on the nomination, Quinn made the following truly hilarious statement:

Quinn said politics had nothing to do with the appointment, adding that Cosgrove is “a passionate advocate for everyone’s rights, everyone’s civil rights, everyone’s human rights.”

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13 Responses to Governor Quinn of Illinois Appoints Anti-Catholic Bigot to Human Rights Commission

  • One more example of the societal blessings/consequences of “useful saints” votes for pro-abortion catholics because they somehow “advance social justice.”

    Your tax dollars are not only paying for baby murders. They fund tens of thousands of evils, e.g., the damnation of youth being brainwashed in pubic schools.

    For whatever it’s worth – here is my Spiritual Work of Mercy (instruct the ignorant) for today: fornication and perfidy are not human rights. They are sins.

  • Let’s pray for Terry Cosgrove and Gov. Quinn and their conversions, and for the bishops, that they may have the courage to speak the truth in love, in season & out of season.

  • I agree with Chris.
    I also will pray that St. Michael can lead some serious a**-kickin’.

  • I wrote this in the combox of yesterday’s post on the Civil War:

    “Why does not the Church publicly excommunicate all publicly professed pro-abortion politicians? Those are rhetorical questions and yes, I realize a person excommunicates himself by such vile acts, yet the public scandal must be confronted with a public response. Look at how St. Peter confronted Ananias and Sapphira in Acts 5:1-11, or what St. Paul did to Hymenaus and Alexander in 1st Timothy 1:19-20, or what St. John said about Jezebel at the Church in Thyatira in Revelation 2:20-23. Precedence has been established for dealing with Nancy Pelosi, Patrick Kennedy, Joe Biden, John Kerry and the rest.”

    If our clergy will not thus discharge their sacred duty, then let them beware the warning of Ezekiel 34:1-11. If God were willing to deal thusly with the hypocritical priests left in Jerusalem after the first deportation to Babylon, then what makes us think that we are exempt when what we do is equal to or great in perversion, perfidy and idolatry than what the people of Judah did and their priests either condoned or worse, sanctified?

    People are going to say that I am being uncharitable and unkind and (the worst sin of all) not nice. Well, the wages of sin are still death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord. Governor Quinn and his fellow Democrats (as well as the neo-cons and RINOs) may sadly find out the truth of that statement when it is far too late. I really like what T. Shaw wrote: fornication and perfidy are NOT human rights.

  • “Let’s pray for Terry Cosgrove and Gov. Quinn and their conversions, and for the bishops, that they may have the courage to speak the truth in love, in season & out of season.”

    As to Cosgrove and Quinn, Chris, that would take some high magnitude prayer. As for a good many bishops, I think they would need an episcopal spine transplant.

  • Then we better get to it, Don. 🙂

    It’s not like we can do much else anyway, is it? Perhaps with the bishops one might correspond with them, but in my experience, prayer really is our best course of action.

  • Can someone be pro abortion and a Catholic? NO!

    No surprise here….

  • “prayer really is our best course of action.”

    In my experience Chris prayer and a punch in the nose often makes a salutary combination. Come to think of it, I have benefited from that combination in my own life. (Thanks, Mom!) 🙂 I will be happy to pray for Cosgrove and Quinn to be converted and saved from the eternal loss of Hell and I will also pray, and work, for the day when they exercise zero power in the Land of Lincoln. As for the bishops, well I guess prayer is better than correspondence since letters seem to mean bupkis to most of them in my experience.

  • ” I will also pray, and work, for the day when they exercise zero power in the Land of Lincoln.”

    Lest others think I’m espousing a form of quietism, let me say that I wholeheartedly agree with your efforts to minimize their impact in IL.

    For someone like me — a few states to your west — my options are more limited in this specific instance, but prayer is something I can always do. And will do. 🙂

  • I agree with every word in the comments here by Don.
    Our prayers are needed for the most part to show our concern and to indicate our sorrow for offences against the Body of Christ. But as the Church Militant we must at least “request” and pray also that our leadership join us and go before us in battle expressing boldly and broadly the TRUTH contained in our efforts to (in the words of Christ himself) bring fulfillment to “thy Will be done on earth…”.
    And for sure understanding that….. “He who is not with me is against me”

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  • As usual, however, some conservatives and Republicans tried to make a mountain out of a molehill on this issue (whether this appointment was a case of “pay to play”) when they already had a mountain of Himalayan proportions staring them in the face (Cosgrove’s militant support for a practice millions of Illinois residents consider morally abhorrent and his bigotry toward a religious faith practiced by many citizens).

    Some GOP legislators seemed to believe they had to justify their vote against him by raising the specter of whether or not he “bought” his position by raising campaign money for Quinn.

    The mere fact that a person who ardently supported a gubernatorial candidate and worked hard to get him elected later received an appointment from said governor is not inherently evil or corrupt, provided the person is qualified for the job to which they are appointed. What governor, president, etc. hasn’t placed the people who supported him from the beginning and stuck with him through thick and thin in positions of influence?

    If by “qualified” one means “possessing relevant experience in a given field and basic knowledge of what the job requires,” then Cosgrove would be qualified in that sense, having served in similar positions elsewhere. However, competency and experience in a public position are not ends in themselves — they should be means to the ultimate end of insuring justice for all citizens. And in that sense, Cosgrove is appallingly unqualified, since he aggressively promotes gross injustice to the most vulnerable citizens of all. Who needs any other reason but that to vote against him?

    The notion that Cosgrove’s appointment was some kind of Blago-style “pay to play” is, in my opinion, a distraction from the real issues similar to the Obama “birther” or “secret Muslim” allegations — there are enough REAL reasons to oppose these people without having to make stuff up.

What Faith Was That, Governor?

Friday, December 3, AD 2010


Pat Quinn is the Governor of the State of Illinois.  He was Lieutenant Governor under Rod Blagojevich and took over after Blago was impeached and convicted by the State Legislature.  Quinn bucked the Republican tide this year and won election to a four year term, narrowly defeating pro-life Republican Bill Brady.  In that campaign Quinn emphasized that he is a pro-abort.

Pat Quinn claims to be a Roman Catholic.  The State Legislature this week passed a civil unions (pretend marriage) bill for homosexuals.  Quinn has vowed to sign it.

Gov. Pat Quinn – who campaigned on the issue, lobbied members and was on the floor of the House for much of Tuesday’s debate – lauded the House’s action. Quinn said he would sign the bill if it passes the Senate, where a vote is expected today.

“My religious faith animates me to support this bill,” Quinn, a Catholic, told reporters after the vote. “I think, as a matter of conscience, this was the right vote.”


The Bishop of Springfield, Thomas Paprocki, wasted no time correcting the Governor:

After the Illinois House of Representatives approved legislation that would require the state to recognize same-sex unions, Governor Pat Quinn was quoted as saying, “My religious faith animates me to support this bill.” He did not say what religious faith that would be, but it certainly is not the Catholic faith. If the Governor wishes to pursue a secular agenda for political purposes, that is his prerogative for which he is accountable to the voters. But if he wishes to speak as a Catholic, then he is accountable to Catholic authority, and the Catholic Church does not support civil unions or other measures that are contrary to the natural moral law.

The Governor met the Bishop’s rebuke with a shrug of indifference:  Asked about the bishop’s statement, Quinn said, “I follow my conscience. My conscience is not kicking me in the shins today.”

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12 Responses to What Faith Was That, Governor?

  • Bishop Paprocki most appropriately availed himself of this opportunity (“teachable moment”) to make perfectly, succunctly clear the Church’s Truth on this faith and morals issue.

    There is another form of bankruptcy (besides fiscal bankruptcy): moral bankruptcy.

    IL is bankrupt on both counts. It just hasn’t declared bankruptcy . . . yet.

  • My guess is that this is more about Quinn paying back the gay activist groups who contributed money to his campaign, than it is about his faith. I don’t recall him making an issue of civil unions/gay marriage until maybe a couple of months before the election.

    Do these statements indicate that Bp. Paprocki will invoke Canon 915 against Gov. Quinn or is considering it? Anything is possible, I suppose. However, if he did, I don’t know that it would have much of an effect. You see, Quinn still has a home in Chicago, and most of his public appearances on weekends are in that area. More likely than not he goes to Mass there. The Cathedral is only 2 blocks from the governor’s mansion and I belong to that parish but I have yet to see him or any other well-known, Catholic statewide official at a weekend Mass. Of course, maybe I’m just going to Mass at the wrong times 🙂 A formal canonical action, if it comes to that, would need Cardinal George and all the bishops of Illinois on board to really be effective.

  • The news just gets worse and worse for the Land of Lincoln. I applaud the Bishop for his clear remarks.

    Disaster I fear looms for Illinois, that’s what happens when your state is taken over by Public Service Unions.

  • “I follow my conscience. My conscience is not kicking me in the shins today.”

    He’s a pol from Chicago. What conscience?

    What is disgustingly amusing about this is that the Governor professes it a matter of conscience that the gay lobby be given a bauble that was dreamed up around about 1986. Our social policy is being set by people who are driven by fashion and when asked to explain themselves have nothing to offer but ‘whatever’.

  • My guess is that this is more about Quinn paying back the gay activist groups who contributed money to his campaign, than it is about his faith.

    Thirty some years ago, the National Organizaton for Women had occasion to complain that state Governors were unwilling to horse trade to get their pet project (the ‘Equal Rights Amendment’) passed. I think it was Governor Thompson of Illinois who offered in reply that for the opposition it was a matter of conscience as well and ‘you don’t trade a constitutional amendment for a job or a bridge’. I guess standards in Illinois have been in long-term decline.

  • Actually this bill opens up even more cans of moral, societal, and fiscal worms than just gay marriage…

    Because the civil unions provided for in this bill are open to BOTH opposite-sex and same-sex couples, some senior citizens think it might provide a convienient resolution to the dilemma of widows/widowers who want to remarry without losing Social Security, pension or other benefits from their previous spouses.

    A civil union under this law would be recognized by the State and grant all the rights the State normally grants to married couples (inheritance, insurance coverage, medical decision making, etc.), but since it wouldn’t be recognized by the FEDERAL government, wouldn’t affect Social Security benefits or change one’s income tax filing status.

    So, what happens if a Catholic or mixed-faith couple, one or both of whom is widowed and has a pension or other source of income they would lose upon remarriage, decides to opt for a civil union instead, and then decides to marry in the Church? What are they going to tell the priest when he asks for their marriage license? What is the priest going to do when he discovers they don’t have one? Is the couple guilty of fraud or cooperation with evil? Does their legal status impinge upon whether or not the sacrament is valid?

  • “Because the civil unions provided for in this bill are open to BOTH opposite-sex and same-sex couples, some senior citizens think it might provide a convienient resolution to the dilemma of widows/widowers who want to remarry without losing Social Security, pension or other benefits from their previous spouses.”

    I don’t wish to insult you Elaine, but that observation was worthy of an attorney! 🙂

    The dirty little secret about gay marriage and civil unions is that, outside of the activist homosexuals, there is precious little evidence that homosexuals en masse are much interested in either one. The type of gaming of the system you mention regarding heterosexuals using civil unions to get around social security regulations, or losing health insurance or pension benefits for that matter, might be the chief legacy of the creation of these pretend marriages. Legislation always has unintended consequences and this might well be one in the case of civil unions.

  • Bravo Bishop Paprocki!! I love how he spoke up and set the record straight.

    It’s really all about these secularists tearing down the family and the importance of marriage, and not about them participating in marriage or civil unions.

  • Another group that may be interested in civil unions as a “lite” form of marriage: young people who want to get on their significant other’s health insurance plan (if it doesn’t already cover domestic partners) but aren’t yet ready for a “real” wedding because they can’t afford the big bridezilla party, or for other reasons.

    However, the ability to have one’s wedding… er, civil union, cake and eat it too won’t last very long if and when the federal government decides to recognize same-sex unions or put them fully on a par with civil marriage. That might please gay activists but probably won’t please the opposite-sex couples who use civil unions to game the benefit system.

  • Quinn needs to be told: “Get thee behind the church, Satan!” Then maybe he will start properly forming his conscience.

  • This is as much a rebuke of Quinn as it is the blue collar Chicago catholics who voted him back into office. The fact that catholics continue to vote for such pro-aborts is also a poor reflection on the unfortunate ineffectual leadership of Cardinal George.

  • So…

    I gather Quinn is not permitted to receive at any Catholic parish within the Springfield diocese? Is that right?

    I ask because doing so would be, under the circumstances, dangerous for Quinn personally. St. Paul asserts that some folk get sick or die as a chastisement from God for taking the body and blood while not properly disposed.

    So, did Bishop Paprocki take this additional pastoral step of keeping Quinn out of harm’s way? (I suppose he could have done it privately.)

Deliver Us From Blago

Friday, August 27, AD 2010

According to legend, the Vikings were so greatly feared by the people of northern Europe during the Dark Ages that they used to pray “From the fury of the Norsemen, Lord, deliver us!”

Of late, I suspect that many Illinois residents like myself are making a similar petition to be delivered from the fury of another force nearly as frightening.

I am speaking of former Illinois Gov. Rod Blagojevich, whose trial on 24 separate federal corruption charges ended on Aug. 17 with the jury finding him guilty of just one charge — lying to federal agents — and deadlocking on the other 23. Federal prosecutors will retry Blago on at least some of the unresolved charges, but in the meantime, he has once again resumed his nationwide media blitz, protesting his innocence to anyone who will listen and making a complete idiot of himself in the process.

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5 Responses to Deliver Us From Blago

  • Bravo Elaine. Fitzgerald has dropped the charges against Blago’s brother which means that he can call the brother to the stand the next go round. That should be an amusing few days of direct examination!

  • My heavens, you know that Illinois is the Sucker State – that’s not a well-known nickname.

    It’s horrible to be an Illinoisan right now, and a Chicagoan. What terrible examples we have put into the public arena! We actually are nice people here.

  • From the perspective of an IL resident who will be going to college next year, talking about this issue at length with my friends has led the vast majority of us to decide to jump ship and leave the state as soon as possible, never coming back, more for our children’s well-being than ours. Given the unofficial motto, “I need a Zoloft,” and the state’s financial and ethical bankruptcy, claiming to be an economic or political refugee shouldn’t prove to be terribly difficult.

  • Jason, I do not blame you at all. If I were young and starting out, I think I would probably leave the state also, and that makes me very sad. Illinois was a great state once, and I hope it will be a great state again.

  • Ah, don’t despair folks. Somebody’s got to stick around and clean things up, right? And if Louisiana and New Jersey can get their act together, so can we… heck if Russia can be converted there’s still hope for us 🙂

    On the lighter side… I just went to see a local theater production of “Chicago: The Musical” and it’s actually funnier than ever because of the obvious parallels to recent events. Heck I could see a musical being made about the Blago case someday … oh wait, that’s already been done (Second City’s “Rod Blagojevich, Superstar!”).