Sunday, July 21, 2019

Who Thought the Jihad Squad Was A Good Idea

Dear Illinois GOP,

If you ever want to get college-educated people under 50 back into the party, I would suggest you ask yourself 'What made someone that someone has entrusted with some level of ability to put stuff on like that on a public Facebook group".

If the answer is "Someone thinks that is the way forward for the Illinois GOP"  then I would suggest you just give up medium and long term on Cook and the collar counties.  Seriously, save your money and spend what you have outside of the area.

Just because Trump is feeling that is his path forward does not mean in any way shape or form it needs to be your path forward.  If you feel the President is thinking about the best electoral interests of anyone besides what he thinks they are for himself you are mistaken.

This sort of crap is not the way back, it isn't going to get you any undecided voters, it just reinforces the image of the GOP as the angry old white dude party.

That being said at this point part of me thinks the only way forward for the GOP is for it to become even more irrelevant at the altar of Trump at the "Easter Block", in order for the party to have any chance it may need to become a ruin.

Then again, speaking for at least one person who used to identify as Republican and I suspect others if this is your path forward, I can't wish you good luck, I can be sure I am never coming back.


Thursday, May 09, 2019

Sports Betting In Illinois

How the state should implement sports betting (if it should at all), in part comes down to a question, not really a simple one, but perhaps a direct one.

Is Illinois going to allow sports betting in order to generate revenue or because now that courts allow states to do so it feels that it's citizens should be free to bet on sporting events.

Lets not kid ourselves, gaming expansion is going to lead to people having a problem with gambling who do not have a problem today.  We have to be willing to with eyes open be willing to say "This is going to be a problem for some people, but the revenue is going to be the greater good"

If the motivator is tax revenue for the state, be honest and open about that and plan on an implementation that maximizes revenue which may not be the implementation that optimizes the freedom to bet and the flexibility to bet. 

If the motivator is to give the residents and visitors to Illinois the chance to bet on sports because they should have the freedom to do so, we need to consider that 'freedom' as the dirver, not the desire for the state to generate revenue.

Sunday, January 06, 2019

Toni Preckwinkle and Ed Burke

In an act of burring a political story for the ages (making an announcement right after the Bears lost a playoff game on a blocked/missed field goal that hit the upright and the crossbar) Toni announce she is returning $116,000 from a fundraiser at Ed Burke's home.

In a mass email, Preckwinkle — who also is the Cook County Democratic Party chair — said she’s removing Burke as chair of the Cook County Democratic Party Judicial Slating Committee, returning the money raised at his home, demanding he resign as Democratic committeeman of the 14th Ward and calling on him to resign from the City Council immediately. She also called for an end to outside employment by city elected officials.
So I guess my first question would be, does she feel Cook County Commissioners should be allowed outside employment?  What prompted her change in view on city elected officials having outside employment.  Why wait until after she had called for Burke to step down to return the money? 

I am not sure how you can be Chair of  Democratic Party in Cook County and try and wear the progressive hat at the same time. The ties to Burke are going to be everywhere and to be blunt it might be better just to own it than try and run from it.

Wednesday, June 06, 2018

My Desire To Ensure We Create A Culture....

I have stated my commitment to eliminating harassment of any kind in the Capitol, as well as all political committees, and my desire to ensure we create a culture where individuals feel secure in making a complaint. I intend to appoint an individual with extensive experience conducting investigations to review all operations of the House of Representatives, including but not limited to the Clerk’s Office where Ms. Garrett works.

Read the longer release over at CapFax

But, you have been Speaker Of The House longer than anyone has been a Speaker of any statehouse in the history of the United States.  As the commemorative clock reminds us.

How does the Speaker not 'own' the culture in the State House at this point?  I would say the Speaker is responsible to a large degree for the culture as it now exists in the House.  So if he did not create the culture where individuals feel secure in making a complaint, he certainly helped perpetuate it.  I know people in Springfield and I think I know them well enough to know they don't want this culture and it isn't something they decided a month ago.

Is it the silence of good people who let this go on the problem, is the nature of how the legislature works and is structured that if these people decided to stand they were going to be crushed?  Is the fear so strong that the Democratic nominee for Governor doesn't seem to want to say the Speakers name out loud?

Come on, if Republicans were running the House and this stuff was coming out, would JB be silent?

Regardless of how this all plays out, at some point, there is going to be a new Speaker, and I would like to think that the legislature would have the good sense not to let one person have as much power as the Speaker does now.  Be it power over the party purse-strings or over legislation or over the campaign apparatus concentrated political power over time will become a problem.

The Speaker and those who supported him at the least facilitated this culture of fear and intimidation and it's time it ended.  You have to own some of it. This culture doesn't do the people of Illinois any favors and it doesn't do democracy any favors.

The easiest form of leadership is using power to bully and intimidate, it is also the weakest and the most pathetic.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

So the Fox Metro Water Reclamation Board is Going to be Elected, How About Doing the Same For the CPS School Board.

The bill is here, it is headed to the governor.

I guess I missed the huge community outcry for an elected water reclamation board in the Aurora area.  I am also confident that there are a much larger number of people wanting the CPS School Board to be elected. 

It seems if GA can take the time to ensure that people in my neck of the woods have the right to vote for people of the Fox Metro board, they can find time to give the people of Chicago the right to vote for their school board.

It seems that if electing the folks who help decide how to run the outfit that deals with waste water (an important task) it only seems fair that electing the folks who decide how the largest school system in the state is run is a good idea as well.

After all as one state rep put it..

At least the no votes and the yes votes had the chance to vote on it, which is more than it seems the GA is willing to due for those parents and 'people' of Chicago. 

Then again I am sure it is just sitting in the rules committee for a good reason, not because some sort of secret reason why the members of the GA don't get to vote on it (it has something like 56 co-sponsors in the house).

It makes you think that politics is being put ahead of people.  The fine members of the GA wouldn't do that, would they?

Monday, March 19, 2018

I Think Ives Might Pull It Off

If she does, I think Rauner can look in the mirror and blame himself for the campaign that he ran. Also an Ives win will not bode well for the entire party in November.

Tuesday, December 19, 2017

Sports Betting In Illinois

The Supreme Court heard the Christie v NCAA case that seeks to overturn the Professional and Amateur Sports Protection Act of 1992.  If successful, this would likely make it legal for states to allow and regulate sports betting.  

So let's say it is successful, it seems to me that it would make sense for Illinois to allow such gambling and try to generate revenues from it.  Here are some ways I could see it happening.

The Illinois Lottery:

The lottery would perhaps be the easiest way to bring this to the state relatively quickly. 

The lottery could develop a parlay game.That is you have to get multiple bets correct in order to win and then do it either as a para-mutual game (where the winners split the pot) or just underwrite the game extensively. 

So, for example, you had a parlay card where you predicted the winners of 5 football games.  Let's say this game generated $1,000,000 in bets in a given week. The state could take 10% off the top for taxes, and let's say the operator took 10% of what was left for operating fees and vendor rewards.  That would leave $810,000 in the prize pool.  Those who got 5 out of 5 would split 90% of the pot and those who got 4 out of 5 would split the remaining 10%.  

Streight up betting on events:

I think this might be harder to implement this for the lottery because it would create basically a large set of products (one for each sporting event as it were). It would also increase the lottery's risk in case a bet didn't go its way.  It could eliminate that risk by making each individual event a para-mutual type bet but depending on the event the pool would be too small to be interesting for a bettor.

The Tracks and their OTB facilities as betting facilities:

This might be an easier implementation than the lottery options.  Just let them operate like William Hill, betfair or Bet Fred for example. The state could generate revenues by just taking a slice of every bet and could require the operators to kick some of the revenue to the horse racing industry by increasing purses.  This would likely make the tracks and the racing industry very happy and would make sports betting available, but not everywhere.

Video Poker Locations:

Allow an additional machine that would take sports bets. However instead of the facility taking on the bet risk (which seems a bit too risky to me, yes that is kind of ironic) that there would be underlying operators (the machine owners) who could set odds and payouts.   No single underlying operator could operate more than 25% of the locations in the state that would have the units.  The state could take a cut of the bets or just a cut of the revenues.

Complete Stand Alone Betting Shops:

This would be the longest option to implement, but it would be an option.