April 30, 2008

Emma Maersk - What a gal!

Here's something to think about if or when you step into a Wal-Mart. Remember Dubya wants you to stimulate the economy with those tax refunds. I suppose he means America's economy.

"It" Still Floats To The Top

Even Toddler’s confidentiality agreements can’t keep the BS from floating to the top.

In late February, Stroger administration officials said many people had been hired for public health-care jobs not yet approved, causing several commissioners to cry foul, but the county's top hiring official said his colleagues were wrong.

"I believe people were hired before their positions were authorized," said Commissioner Mike Quigley (D-Chicago). "That violates the budget process. That's a big no-no."

The hirings also appeared to violate a hiring freeze imposed by Comptroller Joseph Fratto on Dec. 7, after fiscal 2008 began without a budget.

Stroger spokeswoman Ibis Antongiorgi said people were hired only to fill vacant positions. But in each of three cases, the positions the new employees were hired for did not yet exist or weren't funded, the documents show. Full Tribune Article

Meanwhile, Toddler cops out of a meeting with Palatine claiming to be upset about the format of the session. Taxpayers do not have a right to be upset over tax hikes to pay for mismanagement and the family and friends hiring plan. He’s too arrogant listen...another case of 'my way is the best way'. More from the Tribune

April 29, 2008

The Sunrise Church

Religious zealots are usually a large distraction on or off-pulpit. The reverend is supposed to be retired, so perhaps he’s become bored choosing paint and carpet swatches for his million dollar mansion. It's not easy for some to settle for the solitude of a rocking chair and reflect on one's life.

But boys will be boys when their egos come into play. Anyone in the public eye, on or off-pulpit, should choose his/her words wisely. I can see both sides of this latest dilemma, but will voters bother to weigh those angles? It’s human nature to defend oneself when attacked…even a minister who seems to preach with a vengeance. But it now appears that we need to develop an understanding of a religion of color? So, what are we to do about the Catholic church and other religions embraced by non-whites, create another branch or sect? Does believing need to be so difficult? It's been around for centuries.

Between preachers and politicians can anyone see the pattern? Organized religion, pink, purple, white or black is little more than politics, i.e. 'my way is the right way or the best way'.

A room filled with children of all races and religions could probably evoke more spirituality than all the TV preachers combined. If that doesn't work, try watching a sunrise. It's free and quiet.

The New Blago Game Book

From The Bench

Connecting The Dots

More Cartoons from Tim Jackson

The Tribune has published not one, but two of Tim’s cartoons for the last two Sundays in a row.

Way to Tim! (You too Blago!)

A Little Chicago History

A little history: William Wrigley’s career began when he was 13. He’d been expelled from school and papa Wrigley put him to work at the family soap factory in Philadelphia. That was 1889. He came to Chicago in 1891 as a soap salesman for the family company.

The young salesman gave free gum samples with each sale and soon was receiving requests for gum. So he merged with the producer of the gum he was giving as samples and formed the William Wrigley Jr. & Co. Between 1910 and 1927 Wrigley gum expanded other countries. He took a risk on the imported Chicle and won.

Wrigley created one of his most well-known advertising slogans, the famous twin ad for Doublemint gum. The family built the Wrigley Building in 1924 and purchased the Chicago Cubs in 1924. He died in 1932.

April 28, 2008

A Pre-Planting Ritual?

Did NOH Neighbors See or Hear the Parade?
By neighbors, I mean those who actually live here.

From Tom Mannis at The Bench.

Property of the Month

Manderly, as I named this property, has the blessing of RogersPark.com. This is the Johnson property on Ashland that plagued the northwest side of this little neighborhood. I won’t tire myself or readers with links repeating the myriad photos taken of the place when it was in shambles but still home to humans.

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Friendship and loyalty are frequently misguided terms. Or they are totally misused and usually very fluid. With a little magic, the property avoided foreclosure and managed to be rehabbed into condos. A BizArts breakfast by RP.com was hosted there last fall to coincide with an open house tour. Now, they’ve hung this monster banner naming it ‘Property of the Month’.

Most neighbors appreciate the new look, but by the same token, many cannot forget the years of negligence and problems they were forced to tolerate as this property sat semi-vacant. Apparently the loyalty and friendship survived all the trauma wrought on this neighborhood. After the back-scratching and patting was over, not much was left by the suburban friends for the neighbors.

Up the street is Johnson’s Ashland II that opened its rental doors last fall. Thankfully the dumpsters are out of the courtyard but some bad habits will not change. Last fall a group of student teachers moved into this place thanks to some politickin’ deals on the side with the Board of Ed and Teachers Union. These kids were from Small Town USA and what did they have as a welcome party their first night? A shooting on Juneway. I don’t know how long they stuck it out – but rumor has it that they didn’t last the long haul. But a political deal is a deal just like friendship and loyalty. Choose wisely.

A young man had just exited the door on Juneway when I noticed the tell-tale NOH door jam. This is the method used when someone doesn’t live in the building. The paper keeps the lock from clicking so the ‘guest’ can get back in. Or perhaps the kid forgot his keys right? Or perhaps he scoped out the place and left the door unlocked so a cleaning crew could pick up unwanted laptops, wallets, or cash?

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If anyone reading lives in this building, please check these Juneway doors. After that, get a security system, a dog, and a big stick. Of course, that applies to all of us living in a big city!

Street Closes to Plant Flowers

Today a neighbor wrote in part:

“The other street that services the area to the West (Paulina) was closed to traffic today Sunday April 27th, 2008 at 12:00 noon to facilitate some activity in front of the Good News Church. At each end of the street was a blue barrier with the words “Ald. Joe Moore” in bright white paint. Now in the great scheme of things, crime, gangs etc., this is not a major incident, but it does inconvenience people who work all week and run errands all weekend. To close the only remaining viable street on the west side of this neighborhood on a Sunday afternoon for some kind of church service/function is completely irresponsible, and smacks of complete disregard for this community as a whole, regardless of the requestor or the individuals granting the request.

If the permit was issued prior to the 7600 Block of Marshfield collapsing, then it should have been cancelled and the activity moved. If the permit was issued after the collapse, then the issuers are out of touch (mediating my tone here) and need to get their act together. Or, God forbid, the people asking for the permit after seeing the collapse of 7600 N. Marshfield could have said “For the betterment of the community, We will not close the street (Paulina) today.” Signed NOH Resident (driving around this mess)

These photos show a vehicle maneuvering the obstacle course of speed bumps and sinkholes on Marshfield this afternoon.

GoodNewsFlowers4.27.08 001 GoodNewsFlowers4.27.08 002 GoodNewsFlowers4.27.08 003

Following up on a phone complaint from another neighbor, I wandered over to see the end product for the closing of Paulina today. It seems the board of directors and the wealthy suburbanites who contribute to the GNP were in town to show NOH neighbors how to sweep streets and plant flowers in the parkway. As I recall, this street is cleaned by DevCorp as part of the Howard/Paulina TIF each and every day. Perhaps the street cleaning was the purpose of the street closing? Was it necessary to close the street to plant flowers on the parkway?

May one assume that the point of the cleansing to show people how it's done or was it a strange suburban ritual? If these wealthy folks care so much about this neighborhood, perhaps they could buy property and move closer to the 'source'.

Here’s the Hinsdale bus having a difficult time getting out of town.
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So the church leaders, contributors and followers closed Paulina to plant flowers not in the street but on the sidewalk parkway areas. I'm all for beautifying the parkways, but was closing the street just a little over the top?

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Bouncing back to suburban Hinsdale….the good news enablers have cleared the alley and head back to their pristine, landscaped yards. What a feel good day.
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Oddly, I received a postcard in the mail from this church group inviting me to their 25th year bash at the Mid America Club on the 80th floor of the Aon Center. The dinner will be prepared by fabulous chefs of Club Corp. I'm not sure I have $100+ to spare.

April 27, 2008

Neighborhood Sightings

Other news collected over the weekend:

Last Tueday afternoon, April 22, two females were engaged in a disagreement on the 7700 block of N. Paulina. Allegedly there was a knife involved.

A janitor for a Northpoint building on Bosworth was mugged in the laundry room during the morning of Tuesday morning April 22. Allegedly his wallet was stolen. He has been re-assigned to a different building.

Last Sunday, an attendee of Good News Church claims to have seen the nemesis of North of Howard at the Soup Kitchen. It seems Danny Romero didn’t capture the hearts of enough people in Kansas. He was sighted in our neighborhood looking for an opening at his old digs! The church lady was not happy to see Sir Danny and was relieved no one created a job on the spot for him. Let’s hope there’s not a change of heart from the connections to the joint.

Most agree we have enough trouble without the divisionary tactics of a non-resident being paid by a religious organization to cause even more.

April 26, 2008

Update on Hoyne

Updates can be obtained from Network2424

Victim was found in front of 2045 West Birchwood. This info came from the person who found the victim.

Shooting on Hoyne

Approximately 8:25pm we received a call from a friend with a scanner.

Shooting on or near N. 7455 Hoyne. Three shots fired , the victim is en route to St. Francis Hospital, two offenders fled down Seeley.

Ironically, the neighbors there were on an organized anti-crime walk that began at 7:30. Will update if we hear anything more.

Fire Wakes Up Neighbors

The phone rang this morning at 6:27. A neighbor reported this culprit caused a kitchen fire at a Northpoint building on Bosworth.

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The neighbor directly above heard the smoke alarms and was greeted by firemen knocking down the front door even though the source of the fire was below. Its the CFD's job to ensure that upstairs tenants were safe. It was reported the manager of the culprit had fallen asleep while cooking and allegedly slept through the screaming smoke alarms. Other tenants in the building reported the tenant later didn't appear to be upset about the incident and was allegedly laughing in the hallway. Sometimes people have strange methods of stress management. When I returned the neighbors call around 8:00a.m. repair persons were re-attaching the front door the fire department had knocked down.

There have been many kitchen fires at Northpoint stemming from unattended stoves. Since the buildings are all electric, perhaps some of the agencies could start a drive to collect and distribute crockpots to tenants who do not have one. For a few cents a day tenants would not contribute to possible kitchen fires, higher electric bills and prepare healthier food.

The culprit stove had been removed to the gangway. This alleged grease glob is from tenants dumping their cooking grease. Good rodent appetizers.
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Tenants who may have been evicted allegedly broke these windows upon their exit from another Northpoint building on Bosworth. A few weeks ago there was furniture dumped on the parkway in front of one of the two Bosworth buildings – the red flag of eviction.
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Meanwhile on Rogers , a repairman was boarding up a window broken at 7634. He told me a brick was the inanimate object that perpetrated the disappearance of a computer in the storefront.

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The wind and other forces have more or less removed the half-hearted attempt to secure the squatter hangout on 7532 Rogers. A woman was sitting in the stairwell. When asked if she lived there she replied ‘No, I’m just visiting’.

Anything goes North of Howard.

April 24, 2008

7532 Rogers Gets Spruced Up

Unable to resist an urge to check out the 7532 Rogers property tonight, here’s the Alley View. Apparently someone was contacted and this half-hearted attempt at securing the property was made.
Rogers Spruce Up4.24.08 001 Rogers Spruce Up4.24.08 003

The rain was holding off, so I checked the Rogers side, to find the gate still chained OPEN. A definite security breach.
Rogers Spruce Up4.24.08 004 Rogers Spruce Up4.24.08 005

Gangway from front to rear – the board-up isn’t new so probably wouldn’t be on the 6 month hit list the Mayor wants imposed on new foreclosures.
Rogers Spruce Up4.24.08 007 Rogers Spruce Up4.24.08 006

Clearing the gangway, I noticed the burgundy vehicle and the black van were gone. Remnants of months of hanging-out remain.
Rogers Spruce Up4.24.08 010

Here’s a sleepover stash in the stairwell on the west side in the rear. It wasn’t there last summer – and we didn’t check it over the weekend. It’s quite an accumulation though. In a rural area, these tires would be painted white, placed in front yards filled with petunias and geraniums. Even that would be more appealing than the display here.

Rogers Spruce Up4.24.08 012

The little red shopping cart waits for its owner.

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Taxpayers Cookie Dough

Inconsistencies are such easy, delightful targets, to toss arrows at - especially when they stem from political corruption.

Jay Stone, son of Bernie whined about the Machine foiling his run for office: $75,000

A city employed tree trimmer who refused to “play ball” for the Machine got crappy assignments: $100,000

"1,427 people who will share a $12 million settlement of a long-running court case against political patronage in Chicago. The list of recipients and the amount each received was released by city officials in response to a Tribune public records request." Payouts

Toddler’s becoming a man of dimension. He’s becoming more than a little paranoid over his Machine dictatorship. Stroger’s latest dictate

Hint: It's also known as "shred or delete" or even "break your legs".

So how are we coming along in getting that recall law on Illinois Record oh honorable ones? It’s getting too dirty and expensive for the little guys to keep forking out the dough for the pol’s cookies.

Just a few other cookies on our plate:
Police Settlement cookie
Higher taxes for CTA cookie
Higher taxes for Olympics cookie
Higher taxes for Todd's cousins and friends cookie

Links from the Tribune and Sun-Times

April 22, 2008

Parkway Digging

From Bosworth on another post:

Interesting. I watched a firm today from Union, IL dig on the parkway in front of 4 buildings on Bosworth. They didn't do much damage. Funny how the ward office said there would be no digging.
4/22/2008 5:10 PM

Thanks Bosworth. I checked out your information and thankfully there wasn’t much damage at all. It appears that one building repaired a post that the anti-socials deliberately knocked over last year.
Parkway Dig 4.22.08 002

As I wrote yesterday to the ward office, it would be considerate if gardeners had the notification in time to move our plants. Plants will survive the move but not a #11 foot or a backhoe. These footprints may be a #14!

Parkway Dig 4.22.08 004 Parkway Dig 4.22.08 003 Parkway Dig 4.22.08 005

My concern was that neighbors would continue adding to their parkway plant collection and find it demolished like our neighbors on Ashland did last year.

Correction to the above link: Yellow = Gas, Red = Electric, and Blue = Water

After the 07 episode, I called the city and was transferred about 10 times. Finally someone from the water department spoke to me, took my name and phone numbers and promised to investigate and update me. At the time, he claimed there was no work being done. I described the uprooted rose bushes, grasses, and other plants that had been planted there for years but he insisted there were no work orders. He never returned my call either. One may assume the same approach may be taken even if/when a ward office inquires!

Then there’s this to ponder: Does the city have to contract firms from Union IL instead of going local to update their utility maps? Does that smack of a connection? No wonder no one knows what’s going on!

April 21, 2008

Tribune Readers Offer a Real Vision

April 20, 2008 Tribune Editorial

Ever since this page announced plans to help the Chicago Children's Museum find an ideal home, many Tribune readers have nominated a site that belongs high on any list: A new museum in the northern reaches of Northerly Island, south of the Adler Planetarium, could anchor a wealth of cultural, educational and recreational activities. Think of Northerly as a year-round learning and festival site—all tailored for kids. There is, today, nothing like that on Earth.

What a spectacular setting for kids and their imaginations: the water, ships and, in winter, ice floes of Lake Michigan to one side and, to the other, downtown Chicago's mighty ranks of skycrapers. Kudo’s to the Tribune readers who offered this vision for the Children’s Museum.

Option 2 is much better than this Option on April 15, 2008

One of my many observations at the Children’s Museum was: How the mayor could dare play the ‘race card’ to invade Grant Park. It was free day for kids but adults paid $ 8 or $9 dollars. There weren’t a lot of unattended children – most were with an adult or a group, all represented the diversity the Mayor and his crew embrace with every speech. None appeared to be tattered, poor minority kids. Perhaps their parents couldn’t afford the entrance fee plus bus fare? If the poor, minority race argument is going to be made, then surely the museum could have a free day for the parents too. Forget about the bottom line and start really thinking about the kids. Children need to be taken to museums with parents to enjoy a family outing.

Kids need room to play and roam and moving from one cramped space to another doesn’t prove the argument. And what’s so exciting about an underground playroom that will probably leak like Trump’s Tower? Or are they replicating Mark Twain’s cave in Hannibal Missouri? That was one dark, damp, cold cave.

Another problem is the poor maintenance of the museum. Many of the knobs and wheels on the exhibits were not functioning. At least the kids got in free but were frustrated when exhibits didn't work. We watched as the boys worked the archaeological dinosaur dig. It didn’t appear too safe to me – hard plastic rib bones protruding from rubber chips just waiting for a kid to trip, fall and knock out a tooth or jab an eye. The concept was good – the working plan was lacking.

There’s usually a large gap between a 4 year old’s capabilities and those of an 8 or 9 year old. That’s usually why kids are separated by grade/accomplishment levels in school right? It took an eternity for the kids to get their turn climbing the rope tunnel because a larger kid got stuck in it!

The concept of Children's Island within walking distance of the Adler Planetarium, The Field Museum and the Shedd Aquarium is definitely a win-win vision. And, there would be room for expansion.

At the end of the week, the boys decided they liked the Shedd Aquarium best – they were mesmerized by the lake pounding the rocks outside the lunch room windows. The dolphins proudly paraded during the show. Their second favorite was and probably always will be the train rides!

Next trip, we’ll go to the Museum of Science and Industry.

Curb Appeal

This property for sale by owner on Marshfield – s/he needs to read up on Curb Appeal to get top dollar – especially in this economy in this little neighborhood. Trash bags aren’t that expensive and it’s a relatively easy exercise. Maybe a request to neighbors would result in a few hostas or ground cover to spruce up the exterior. As they say, first appearances count.

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On a side note: Notice the red markers on the sidewalk? Is the City planning any digging of the parkway again? If so, it would be very nice if the ward office would communicate when and which streets may be torn up. Many of us, including the Jonquil Hotel, have spent time and money sprucing up the parkways. We should have the option of moving the plants from the destructive path of backhoes.

April 20, 2008

Sinkholes From Hell

In February, The Broken Heart Reported a broken water main on Marshfield.

According to the sensible commenters tracking and updating everyone on the problem, the leak was repaired and patched up. This is how the street appears now. After the break, and the continued cold weather, we have two sinkholes. The one on the west side of the street drops off 8 inches from the pavement. The marker has been knocked over and an unobservant driver might find him/herself depositing car parts along the way.

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Now there is a single lane bottleneck for vehicles. Hopefully the the hole in the sidewalk on Howard Street will be fixed when these sinkholes are repaired. Hopefully it will happen before winter 2008.

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That’s right Dan L, you witnessed two taxpayers measuring a damn sinkhole! We were just trying to speed up the repair process!

For Sale! Condos at 7532 N Rogers

Remember this long vacant condo building?
Nearly one year ago 24/7 blogged this

From CAPS meeting 8/14/07
7532 N Rogers was discussed previously as the 'new construction' building that has been vacant for years and squatters have been reported there. It is currently owned by 7532 Rogers LLC, the agent is an attorney. There are 19 properties in the 24th district connected to same agent/attorney. Investigations into an alleged scam have been initiated into these properties. Reports of selling condos in tenant buildings were mentioned as one known incident. Checking the Bar Association online to the attorney's known reported complaints and the possibility of disbarment was discussed. Further investigation by the States Attorney's office and FBI must be completed.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

sightseeing 010
Through the unsecured gangway sightseeing 009

Continuing through the alleyway to the back yard: sightseeing 008 To the blue hoodied gentleman napping in the backseat of this vehicle: sightseeing 005

Other amenities of the building include broken windows, fence, graffiti, an outdoor closet and lots of trash:
sightseeing 007 sightseeing 006

Apparently someone flipped a wig in this squatter hangout:

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View from Howard at recently vacated Howard Tire Shop. That indicates either the lease ran out or Robert Coe is going to start construction.
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While taking the photo of the wig, a gentleman came up behind me and said 'Excuse me, is there a reason for this?" I just laughed and said I had to have a photo of the wig. He was totally unaware of it, so wandered over to look. So I left and watched as another man with a red shopping cart with treasures came in. That made three hanging out in the unsecured 'back yard'. About half an hour later I checked in and all three left, the red cart folded between fence and building. I'm sure the yard was busy last night.

There's a realtors sign in a front window on Rogers but I can't imagine any decent realtor showing this mess to a prospective buyer.

Here’s one for the Mayor to use as an example!

April 18, 2008

Quake Coverup

There are rumors that the epicenter of the earthquake was really in Springfield, IL but due to political cover-ups by Blago, Madigan, and yes, the Mayor of Chicago, it was was moved to West Salem.


Here's one reference to many of the stories about New Madrid fault line that I heard growing up. Yes, one quake was so strong the Mississippi River ran backwards (or appeared to) in 1812. In the late 1990's, everyone, including my parents, had what to do in the event of an earthquake posters next to their phones. After today, I'm sure more will appear.

April 17, 2008

The Howard Street Carnival

The warm weather yesterday brought out the best on Howard Street. Was there a street carnival on a work day? The photo was taken around 6PM.


This morning, the accumulated carnival discards brightened up the morning walk.


This little bird has immunity from “don’t feed the pigeons”. What a great street huh?


April 16, 2008

From Fargo's Blog

On the flip side, a white, middle-aged female in her vehicle flagged me down in front of my home about a year ago. She pulled over and we were discussing certain socio-economic issues – she’s a social worker. During our conversation, a loud blare was sounded from a squad car behind us…when she didn’t immediately drive off, they drove around and handed her a ticket from the passenger side of the squad to the driver side of her car. Issue: double parking.

My point? We were not in an intersection blocking traffic as neighbors witness happening in front of Sandy’s at Bosworth/Howard, Jonquil/Ashland and many other intersections all day, every day. Yet how many tickets are issued at these intersections every day? Or was a white middle-aged woman less threatening to the officers as an easy revenue ticket?

If an activity is illegal, on the books, then tickets for all. That includes the boom box decibel level in vehicles - if that law was enforced the city would be out of the red in no time.

April 15, 2008

The Ides of April

Don’t forget, the post office will be open until midnight so you can deposit those tax forms. For those who qualify for Dubya’s rebate, don’t forget he wants you to spend it not save it. Saving money won’t boost the economy. Perhaps McDonald’s is offering it’s 49 cent hamburgers again this year so that’s an inexpensive, healthy lunch reward.

The Ides of April has been a significantly historical day…here’s list of other events outside the tax box.

April 14, 2008

Spring Frolic

Cheerful, springtime courtyard d├ęcor from our neighbors on Hermitage. A friend had emailed me to check out their lamp posts. The yellow silk flowers do have a welcoming effect, especially in this slow arriving spring.


In the community garden, this little sprout appears to be a rhubarb plant. Every day more little plants surface, including the lawn lovers hated dandelions.


The spring sightseeing tour was interrupted by a little brown, unleashed dog running away from his two children. He was having a very dangerous field day running south on Hermitage. He wouldn’t stop for them and definitely not for a stranger. When asked about a leash, the kids, perhaps 12 and 8, said ‘we just had him in front of the house, we don’t need a leash’. OK, no use telling kids some of the reasons for leash laws right? If the dog isn’t prone to biting, it’s still in danger of being attacked by other dogs or dashing into the street. Unleashed dogs darting into traffic ranks high on veterinarians anger list.

I walked around the garden and turned on Marshfield and the little guy was still evading his kids, running back and forth across the street, refusing to stop. They’d chased him around the block at that point and unlike him, were losing energy. The game had become a frustrating effort for them.

I just hope all three made it home safely and that they learned a little more about using a leash.

April 13, 2008

A New Spin On Politics As Usual

Thanks to the internet friend who sent this.

a.I don’t really care if Hillary dodged bullets in Bosnia 11 years ago or not -please give Bill a sedative.

b.It isn’t worth the time to worry about McCain’s age, he’s still in favor of war isn’t he? Until there’s an age cap like term limits we’re stuck.

c. Today, Obama’s busy pulling his foot out of his mouth. Yes, Obama, plenty of people are damn bitter with damn good reason. Some are educated too. More politics as usual.


April 12, 2008

April 11, 2008

Not In Our Neighborhood huh?

By Fran Spielman - Sun Times

Chicago building owners would be required to secure, maintain and light up their vacant buildings under a mayoral crackdown in the works to prevent the epidemic of home foreclosures from ruining entire neighborhoods.

The use of plywood to cover doors and windows would be prohibited on buildings vacant for at least six months, under an ordinance introduced by Mayor Daley at this week's City Council meeting.


The Mayor also noted that vacant buildings could become ‘ fire hazards and magnets for crime’. There’s a vacant building registry already Sir. His aldercreatures don’t always push the buttons on the property owners though. Over the years I noticed several vacant NOH buildings weren’t listed on the City’s registry. Ward staffers claimed they didn’t know certain buildings were vacant – that is until bloggers came along.

Vacant buildings are also required to be insured that is, with the exception of tax exempt properties. They’re allowed to slide and that should be amended to meet these new compliance issues.

But is Daley concerned about safety of neighborhoods or is he creating a form of eminent domain in disguise for Club 50? Should this proposition pass, who will be at the front of the line to grab up these properties?

All of these measures should have been enforced citywide when the economy was booming for safety’s sake. Was it ignored if the board-ups only happened in certain low income neighborhoods? Where were the elected, highly paid alderpersons? Were there too many vacant buildings to handle or was it considered too much manpower (or time) to waste securing these neighborhoods? Now that foreclosures have hit non-low income pockets we are hearing a different song from City Hall.

I wonder many squatter fires have occurred in NOH alone in vacant buildings in the last 15 years? The Broadmoor East sat vacant for years and years thanks to a squatter fire. But the ward office claimed they didn’t know it was empty. My response was : If I was an alderman I’d have a map of my ward with red push pins for vacant buildings, another color push pin for drug buildings and so forth. All I heard in response was how much work there is to do.


April 10, 2008

Problem Solving - Back To Basics

Tonights Beat 2422 speaker is a person who initially worked to bring city-wide community policing to Chicago; helped successfully lobby to for the 24th District as a prototype district in the original CAPS program; as a member of the original 24th District DAC, helped formulate the new CAPS initiative; as a 2422 beat facilitator worked with the community to form successful problem-solving groups in beat 2422.

Karen Hoover will discuss problem-solving...back to basics.

Gateway Senior Apartments
7450 N. Rogers - Community Room
7:00 PM

April 9, 2008

Recall Passes House

From the Chicago Tribune:

The measure needs to clear the Senate by May 4 to wind up on the Nov. 4 ballot. It would then need approval from either three-fifths of those voting on the idea or a majority of those voting in the election to change the state Constitution. The last time that happened involved the Illinois Courts Commission in 1998.

Once adopted, elected officials would have to be in office at least six months before a recall effort against them could start.

Recall advocates would need to get a petition with enough signatures filed with the State Board of Elections within 160 days of starting the effort.

April 8, 2008

Through The Eyes of Children

All of my children are visiting on spring break. Sunday was the bus ride to the Lincoln Park Zoo and yesterday was another big adventure.

We waited until after rush hour so we could get on the first car with the CTA conductor. The boys, ages 6 & 7 had the prized front row window to the city seat. The conductor asked their names as we waited at the Howard take-off point. Later during the ride, he announced their names on the train intercom as his two co-conductors. The dip into the underground tunnel surpassed their expectations!

The Train Ride 4.7.08 005

We thanked him when we departed the train at Chicago Avenue and he posed with everyone for a photo at his train window. Arthur the conductor made two little boys very happy – a happy CTA story.

The first leg of our journey was a visit to the top of the Hancock building. The second leg was to Navy Pier and the controversial Children’s Museum.