Misplaced Priorities

There are a few geographical peculiarities in this country that I have to confess I’ve had enough of:

  • Yes, Texans, we know; everything’s bigger.
  • Alaskans:  Like Texas, in the same accent Francis McDormand used in Fargo.
  • New Orleans: When you describe the New Orleans attitude, you’re describing a 24/7 houseparty.  Most of us outgrew that in our early 20′s.
  • We don’t care how you do it in New York.

But one of the most tiresome is the reverence Chicago pays to its history of political corruption.

Christopher Orlet at AmSpec has had enough, too:

Here we go again. Another corrupt Chicago politician hogging all the headlines. It seems like every time you open a newspaper (or surf the Internet) some columnist is snootily recounting Chicago’s colorful past as a Shangri-la of corruption and political intrigue, from Mayor Levi Boone’s 1855 Beer Riots to the zany antics of Gov. Rod Blagojevich. Manhattanites may be ardent arts and culture snobs, but no one appreciates a good political scandal like a Bears fan.Just the other day Wall Street Journal readers were treated to the giddy recollections of Chicago native Scott Simon, who reminisced wistfully about the colorful history of Chicago politics. “Chicagoans and Illinoisans,” wrote Mr. Simon, “love political scandal the way that Milanese love opera.”

Speaking as a journalist who just happens to be a downstate Illinoisan, I’ll grant that political scandals are wonderful copy, perhaps even comedy gold. But as a disenfranchised citizen of a corrupt, one-party state ruled by Democratic party hacks (and I mean that in the best way possible) there is little to “love” in these continuous scandals.

Pride in rampant criminality that skews government? I don’t imagine they’d be as proud of it if were a Republican majority.

22 thoughts on “Misplaced Priorities

  1. Downstate always loathed Chicago. You could always count on Chicago to deliver their votes late to make sure the state swung whatever way the Chicago machine wanted.

    (Is the peeve serious? I hope that tiny brain was trying to be ironic since the DOCUMENTED corruption in Chicago each day would be the NoDak corruption for a decade.)

  2. North Dakotan corruption? This is news to me. Spill it, Peeve.

    Chicago corruption isn’t just at the Governor level, it’s everywhere throughout the system.

    I recall a Chicago lawyer who objected to title to Minnesota land because it was registered title. Why is that a problem? Because in Chicago, you can’t get anything done with registered title without paying a bribe. We want it un-registered to avoid the bribes.

    That was just ordinary, run-of-the-mill common knowledge for legal professionals working there. The lawyer was astonished when I said we don’t do that here, and gave him the names of several people to confirm my story.

    More like a third-world banana republic than a major US city.

    Can’t wait to hear about similar corruption in Medora, Peeve. Lay it on us.

    .

  3. Oh of course you don’t care about how we do it in New York. The higher standards would be impossible for you hayseeds to meet.

  4. Nerdbert noted: “Downstate always loathed Chicago.”

    Oh dear, Peoria and East St. Louis disapprove!

    and: “the DOCUMENTED corruption in Chicago each day would be the NoDak corruption for a decade.”

    While the DOCUMENTED popularity of Lawrence Welk reruns would be the reverse.

  5. Oh of course you don’t care about how we do it in New York. The higher standards would be impossible for you hayseeds to meet.

    These days Times Square is more like Fargo than you’d like to admit.

    While the DOCUMENTED popularity of Lawrence Welk reruns would be the reverse.
    Okay, you asked for it:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ye3ecDYxOkg

  6. Wow, Terry. You have caused my head to explode.

    “A modern spiritual”!

    So is that what people look like in the midwest? Also, looks like Dale and Dale are leaning on a scaffold – the opening act for a hanging maybe?

  7. Oops, looked it up. “Gail and Dale.”

    You rightwing kooks don’t go for the Dale and Dale action.

  8. Peev,

    I’m not sure why you keep bringing up North Dakota. That article has been pretty roundly debunked, not leastly here.

    Lame even by your standards.

  9. Believe it or not, Angry Clown, that video was made many years ago. Styles have changed since then in the Midwest. At least I think they have. Typical gear in my neighborhood is shorts, flipflops, and a hoody.

  10. Oh of course you don’t care about how we do it in New York. The higher standards would be impossible for you hayseeds to meet.

    Yes, and we’re grateful those enormous cockroaches are exclusive to NY apartments.

  11. “Oh of course you don’t care about how we do it in New York. ”

    ’cause um you know if you can um make it you know here, um you know um um you can make it um you know any um where

  12. Higher standards in New York City? Do you mean like allowing the Port Authority to build a 110 story tower without sprinklers? Or not figuring out that disrupting the street grid in lower Manhattan will lead to gridlock?

    Or for that matter, high standards of “logic” that would preclude people from figuring out that cities with cultures of corruption might not have high conviction rates for the same, or else the corruption could not continue. Sorry, Peev and AC, those of us who have lived around Chicago are very familiar with what goes on, and North Dakota can’t hold a candle to the Windy City in this regard.

  13. Oh of course you don’t care about how we do it in New York.

    On that score, you’re quite right.

    Sharing a brew with an FBI agent recently transferred to here from NYC last summer:

    Me: Why’d you come to the frozen tundra from NYC?

    Agent: Too much work there. The only people in NYC are either crazy, criminals, or both.

    The higher standards would be impossible for you hayseeds to meet.

    Oh, yes, the vaunted higher standards of NYC. Like how it took 90 minutes to steal the Empire State Building? I’m guessing that even the dimwits locally might have noticed Fay Wray as a witness, although they might have missed Willie Sutton as the notary.

  14. Oh dear, Peoria and East St. Louis disapprove!

    As does that ever conservative destination of Urbana-Champaign. If there was ever a liberal bastion in the ever lasting cornfields of the midwest, that was it. Where even the thought that you might vote for Reagan would send professors into fits of rage resulting in barrages of erasers! Good times, man, good times.

    Even down there we knew that the Chicago machine had the fix in. Not that most folks objected to the relentlessly liberal politics, just to the relentless corruption and waste.

  15. Oh dear, Peoria and East St. Louis disapprove!

    On the other hand, Rockford and Danville are cool with it. So it all evens out.

    I lived in Chicago for a number of years and a lot of people really do enjoy the corruption, mostly because they are complicit in it. That’s why it “works.” Chicago is a wonderful city in spite of itself.

  16. And Peeve, if you’re thinking of the Great Peace Garden Scandal of 1987, in which marigolds were planted where the begonias were supposed to go, that whole deal was thoroughly investigated and found to be completely innocent.

    The Burpee Seed salesman allowing as how “that might be nice for a change” was found not to be “undue influence” and the two packets of complimentary amaranthus were well under the gift limit established by the Ethics and Good Manners in Government Act.

    So don’t even go there, Peeve. Come up with something new and real or apologize like a man.

    .

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