September 30, 2008

Don't Freeze My Raise Rich!

"Meanwhile, all but six of Chicago's 50 aldermen plan to accept a 6.2 percent cost-of-living increase that will boost their annual salaries to $110,556 Jan. 1.
Aldermen John Pope (10th); James Balcer (11th); Scott Waguespack (32nd); Tom Tunney (44th); Helen Shiller (46th), and Mary Ann Smith (48th) are the only aldermen to sign affidavits by a Sept. 15 deadline declaring their intention to forfeit the increase.

Forty-four aldermen declined to sign the affidavit from Budget Director Bennett Johnson, in part, because of the effect it would have on their pensions. Some were offended that Johnson even asked." Full Sun Times Article

We already know that Berny wants his raise – it’s irrelevant if the rats are given permission to finish taking over parts of his ward. Now the rodents on Devon can merrily munch on tons of trash if those cutbacks are made.

As for Ward 49 – well, I told Joe and Wayne after Memorial Day that the tree on the parkway had dead branches. I reported the dead branches again the last time Joe had his Satellite at the Howard el. I actually made him laugh that day. He saw me coming and turned to ‘greet’ people coming from the south and the bus. When he turned around I was there looking up at him. Just one simple smiley question: “Are you Joe Moore?”

I may strongly disagree with some of Joe’s antics – but I am still a constituent with dead limbs in a city tree I didn’t plant in the parkway. When the limbs fall it will not be on my car but they may land on one of his favored constituents vehicles. So beware parking under dead tree limbs or ask Joe to get them sawed off.

Daley should consolidate the wards and save a helluva lot of money – not just this year but every year.

The 21st Century Crusade?

In America, we are (supposed to be) free to choose and practice or not practice religion. Maybe its time to start seeking agnostics for political office. Sure, the video in the 21st Century Crusade is grainy, it's not super or too recent, and is a product of the National Enquirers' research - but its unnerving that 'religion' is always an underlying current in politics.

Ia Sarah the victim or is Sarah the persecutor? Did she piss off someone and fear a 'hex' was or would be put on her? Maybe in her several colleges days she participated in Wicca and needed to purge her past? Next time, don't video it Sarah.

Perhaps one of the questions in Thursdays VP Debate should be about freedom of religion, prejudice and ignorance. As I recall, the Bush administration didn't rally when it was time to bury certain dead soldiers. It was alright to die for the country but not alright to have their religious symbol on their headstone.

Wiccan Soldiers Final Resting Place

From CNN

The least Sarah and her kind can do, is to read up - yes from a BOOK - just where the tradition of the Easter Egg, Yule, May Day and many others originated. Granted, it may turn up her nose or toes but neither will fall off and end up in a Halloween cauldron.

September 29, 2008

The Bailout -

Here’s the ‘bailout’ from The Swamp – Chicago Tribune. Something has to be done – but are we unwilling participants in saving lenders who gave large sums of money to home buyers with terrible credit? None of us reaped any commissions or perks from those deals.

It’s one matter if someone with decent credit ran into bad luck such as losing a job, a critical illness – I’m referring to the millions with histories of apartment evictions, vehicle reposessions, bad credit, etc. who slid under the radar and were granted a loan and then manipulated multiple refinancing. Who allowed those risks? It wasn’t the taxpayers.

Why don’t the politicians across America donate 70% of their campaign war chests to the bailout effort? Don’t scream ouch either.

September 28, 2008

Rogers Park Garden Group

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All the monies raised go entirely toward greening/gardening projects in RP. Check out their website above to their projects.

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Three of RPGG founders Sandy and Carol Goldman
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and Pamela Vangiessen, the busy pumpkin bee.
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My new treasures are planted, watered, and adjusting to their new home.

September 27, 2008

The Zoning Notification Letter

Thursday’s mail brought a letter dated September 23, 2008 from the attorney for the owner of Broadmoor East*. *After the post, it was learned that Broadmoor East was NOT sold to the same owner as the Broadmoor. It states that on or about September 9, 2008, the owner will file an application with the Zoning Board of Appeals of the City of Chicago for a special use. They want to establish dwelling units below the second floor allowing the conversion from 6 existing retail spaces and 44 to 42 dwelling units. There will be some reconfiguration going on.

Since this letter was to have been sent to everyone within 250 feet of the property –I called with a few questions. The attorney and I had a pleasant enough discussion and a few points were clarified – on both sides.

On the question of what type of construction: condo or apartments and the Section 8 matter – 20% of the units will be available at a lower rate. Of course, I know it’s illegal and discriminatory to refuse to rent to a person with a Section 8 voucher…but I heard it again.

Allegedly, many years ago, Bosworth was zoned commercial and they now seek to change it to residential to conform. It’s referred to as a non-conforming building. According to the attorney, they will retain the commercial spaces on Howard Street. When asked about what types of businesses would they be recruiting – he mentioned DevCorp. Sigh.

This special use will also change the number of dwelling units from 44 to 42 through reconfiguration.

When the gentleman mentioned meeting with the community…the red flags flew with the questions. When and Where? I didn’t see any notices get any email invitations. He said they met a few weeks ago with ’14 or so people in the alderman’s office’. Then he mentioned the zoning committee. Well, sir, that does not constitute a community meeting – as some of those trusted Moore supporters do NOT live North of Howard.

To that, I asked if he knew the REAL history of this area and what was CURRENTLY going on….he claimed he did but I filled him in. Many of us bought here after hearing ‘this was a neighborhood in transition’. Many of us may not have bothered had we known about the 30 year agreement with IDHA for the 12 problem NorthPoint Buildings, that other Moore pal, Johnson, and a few others who do not properly manage rental/subsidized buildings here. I told him if he wants community input, the meeting should be with the real people who live here, not a ‘committee’ that says yes or no as the alderman requires to push or stall or stop development.

Also noted was the recent history as of July , 2008 when the weeds were knee deep and the trash a close second on the parkway. One neighbor claims to have called the ‘new management’ company to complain and was rudely told it was not their responsibility to maintain the parkway. Also brought to the attorney’s attention were the locals and their tourist friends who park there to party, deal drugs and/or prostitute themselves knowing the building is vacant. I told him of the residual trash from used condoms, discarded clothing items, food containers, drink containers, and alcohol containers tossed on the parkway. I mentioned that the parties involved would hear real community concern had there been a real community meeting inclusive of residents who live here and who may pay taxes here.

I don’t recall getting a response on the matter of a resident manager. The attorney tried to assure me that my term ‘mismanagement’ defines a win or lose situation. Well of course it does, that is why NOH doesn’t need any more problem buildings from non-resident owners. If Mr. Luca wants community support – he might begin with gaining our trust and communicating with us instead of just an alderman’s non-resident committee. Because Joe will bring it to us when it's a 'done deal'.

While the Bosworth building has been vacant since before I moved here – rehabbing the space into decent, safe living units would be welcome as long as tenants are properly screened, the building properly managed etc. etc. Other neighbors may share the same concern – but will they be heard?

Will the alderman + 14 insist on certain contingencies or will it be wham, bam, thank you mam like the NorthPoint IDHA 30 year extension was? NorthPoint claimed they needed that 30 year extension to justify another rehab – to the tune of $15 million. Yet they still use one excuse to examine the units – testing for lead paint on the porches. Is this another waste of government time and money? How old are the porches and when was lead paint taken off the market? I asked that question of IDHA again a few weeks ago. “Why wasn’t lead paint and other environmental concerns abated when those buildings were totally vacant for the 2003-05 rehabs? Logic would demand that would be the perfect time to clean up the problem.

The response was another bureaucratic non-response. If you think I am rambling – start connecting the dots. North of Howard is the place to be if you are low income because some of the good people on that committee of 14 don’t want Section 8 in their back yards. When the concerned progressive liberals of Ward 49 start integrating Section 8 in their little neighborhoods, we will direct the drug dealers, prostitutes and dice games to those new points of interest. Then and only then will they get a dose of their own medicine.

September 26, 2008

A Treasure Hunt

Don't Forget! Sunday September 28, 11AM - 2PM
Rogers Park Garden Group sponsors its end of summer fundraiser.

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1500 West Jarvis at Greenview outside Charmers Cafe.

Don't The Feds Have Better Battles To Pursue?

Who Paid For Feds Time On This Stupid Battle - Tax Payers Dollars?

The Museum so far has spent approximately $25,000.

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More Hemingway Cats

September 25, 2008

The 13 Minute Excuse

Will our great, great, great grandchildren read this in history books? All the Clinton Slammers nationwide sooner or later may have to admit that impeachment over a little sex in the Oval Office really pales in comparison to Iraq and the deregulation that has us sitting in this smelly corner of the litter box.

Clinton at least balanced the budget for the first time in how many years? Does anyone remember those 7% interest rates on CDs? Clinton also left his successor a surplus which Dubya proceeded spend like a kid in a toy store. Hopefully our children’s children will never have an idiot leading this country again. That includes all the cronies who voted along with him most of the time. Yet no one ever rallied to an impeachment call and now it's too damn late. Dubya excused himself from the mess in 13 minutes. Amazing.

A friend told me today that her money market which had invested a small percentage of her nest egg in Lehman Brothers has been frozen all week. Online balance states 0 - yes zero. The money is there - just not accessible and as of late this afternoon, the investment firm had no comment as to when it would be either. Ain't that grand?

#####

"Many mortgage lenders approved loans for borrowers without carefully examining their ability to pay. Many borrowers took out loans larger than they could afford, assuming that they could sell or refinance their homes at a higher price later on."
But whose job is it to regulate the questionable lending? That would be the government. And Bush is in charge of it.

Bush came into office eight years ago complaining that he had inherited a recession. It was brief and mild.

When he delivered his speech Wednesday night, Bush had 118 days left before the next president is sworn in on Jan. 20.

When Bush leaves, his successor will inherit a problem of historic proportions.

Source

CTA and Street Art on Howard

I stopped in the Community Center last night after work for a few minutes. As I exited, there were three undercovers smack dab in front of the building with 3-4 gentlemen detained and the blue lights flashing.

Along came Betsy from the ward office for the CTA art meeting. “Hello Betsy”. She did return the greeting, inquired about the scene playing out on the curb. I told her we see this all the time and suggested that her boss needs to get involved in the issues he has helped perpetuate here. Whether or not it gets relayed is up to her. One person was taken away in cuffs.

Michael Land went scurrying into the building – either he was avoiding me or perhaps in the near dark of 6:50 PM he didn’t see me. As I hung around debating if I should go to the meeting on CTA art along came Joe. He too, would have avoided me but I said ‘Hey Joe, you just must missed all the action’. He acknowledged my presence and muttered something I didn’t hear since he didn’t stop. But I’m used to him either ignoring me or raising his voice at me so it was a change.

So I went in too. The existing art on the slideshow presentation of other red, brown and blue line stations was much more interesting than the finalist pieces exhibited. The schematics were two-fold – a mural for the Howard Street entrance that is currently being renovated and overhead art to be focal point in ceiling of the escalator banks in the Paulina entrance. Two exhibits were interesting until the discussions started. The prerequisite for the artists was to create art that needed little or no maintenance, i.e. fiberglass, stainless steel, or plastic medium. When the discussion started on ‘power washing’ the ceiling art – I mentioned to a neighbor ‘they can’t power wash over the escalators’! What would Huberman say about that? My understanding Ron wants part of the Howard/Paulina TIF money to enclose escalators from the elements. Also mentioned was ensuring the hanging work did not become a pigeon roost.

The selected artists were required to write an analysis of their design reasoning for the space. That’s good enough for me – members of the audience had suggestions for some of the exhibits. I made my exit before the mural exhibits were presented. Once upon a time in one of my 12 hours of art history, a professor kept the same painting projected on the screen for three classes in a row. Each class he went into ‘his’ explanation of the artists thoughts or reasoning that went into the painting. The slide wasn’t one of Hieronymus Bosch or Paul Klees’ exciting art but of a lesser known artist. The painting was of red flowers in an urn. Discussing brush strokes, medium, and style could have been completed in one class. To presume to know what another person was thinking 200 years ago on canvas was absurd. A person sees art and either likes it or doesn’t – its pretty simple or should be.

Hopefully the presenters had some interesting takeaways from the comments. Hopefully they had safe exit from this neighborhood too. I hope Joe noticed the appearance of Howard Street when he left too.

September 24, 2008

Poop Flies In The Sandbox

Well, finally?

On a google search, it appears AIG, for one, has been investigated off and on for some time now. What’s the glitch? Can’t do anything till Wall Street falls?

Both candidates have some MUD from the NY Times

da Mayor’s angry words about mud:

Was the mayor suggesting that Obama get down and dirty by running an ad that reprises McCain’s role in the Keating Five?

“It would be a great ad. Remember: People lost their life savings, their own homes for a guy named Keating out of Arizona,” Daley said.
“If you want to get tough in politics, I can get as tough in politics as anyone else. If you want to do that, then you basically bring yourself down. When you start throwing mud, mud is gonna be thrown at you and it’s gonna be sticking,” the mayor said.

Come on kids, the sandbox is HUGE – there’s room enough for all the scoopables, so let’s hear it ALL. You’re politicians right? Oh and with the Stroger Clan, Daley Clan and all the tax and giveaway clans, more people are going to lose their homes.

Sun-Times

Just pose and smile, the boys will take it from here

Sooo, will the lady speaketh on October 2? Will the good ole’ boys allow her to speak in front of those bad media people?

September 22, 2008

Pandering - Right and Left

The two mainstream American political parties have become pandering enablers. One panders to the rich while the other panders to the poor. They’re bi-polar in my opinion but now we have perky little Sarah with her all-American high school sweetheart hubby, her brood, her guns and her small town mentality. There’s nothing wrong with that mentality if everyone shares it – but what if it lands in the minority of the masses?

Not all Americans want to ban books, have an arsenal in the closet or overturn Roe v Wade.

Sure, apple pie, Chevrolet (my dad was a Ford man) and baseball is the American way. What is not acceptable anymore is the pandering; the diversion from real human rights to the non-separation of church and state to the extent this movie is playing out. If a female wants an abortion it’s her damn business not the governments. If a person is gay – you cannot pray it away any more than you can pray away your family history. What is – is and what isn’t – isn’t.

What we do not have is any form of checks and balances anymore. It’s a free-for-all with corporate lobbyists and Tony Rezko types slithering through the halls of government. While the country sits in a depression both parties are raising millions of dollars! Somehow, the banks were deregulated enough to cause a bigger firestorm than the S&L Scandal

There’s mud to sling from the other side too. There's the Mud from Rezko and mud on the personal approach from this book.

Citizens are expected to work more, pay more, give more while these power-driven candidates make promises they may not be able to fulfill. Enter the religious right ranting and chanting even though America is supposed to embrace freedom of religion –not to mention freedom of speech.

Our personal histories began with those who created America to escape some form of persecution. But we’ve yet to arrive at that point. In fact, it seems we’re making the full circle and the Great Divide is no longer a geographical term. On one side are those who seek to govern with their religious controls on moral aspects while dishing out the usual lip service to the middle class workers. On the other side we have those doing due diligence to the rich and promising jobs and the American Dream to the poor… and more free this and more free that. We don’t need any more free this or that…we need discipline and direction not pipedreams that shatter when reality hits. That’s the 21st century persecution we to face – enabling needs to be replaced with equilibrium before the middle class is extinct.

Social services are and should be for people who not only need help but want help to rise out of the situation they’re in. Unfortunately, it has become a life style for many generations that were promoted and fed by the enablers. It's expected now.

On the flip side are the ultra rich and their tax loopholes so the middle class can take up their slack financially. It's expected now. It’s similar to the office situation where one tier feels they’re too entitled to replace the empty bottle in the water cooler and run to tell the someone on a lower level. Or there are those who feel they're too special to pick up the mail in the mailroom when they're expecting a letter. I've always wondered if they act like that at home - the old 'hey honey, bring me a beer' mentality. Then there are the workers who come in late, leave early and dump their work on others. By some standards, this is a feeble description of teamwork and it aligns with the current political mentalities too. Just dump it on the middle class.

Maybe it’s time for a real political party – the equalizers or the balancers just anything but the enablers.

September Parks Advisory Councils Meeting

Last weeks September 16 meeting was postponed for the regional budget meetings. The rescheduled meeting will be tomorrow night at 7 PM Gale Community Center. This meeting includes all three parks councils - Gale, Triangle and Harold Washington Playground.

September 20, 2008

World Music Fest 2008 - Rumba Baby

Yves Francois Et Rocaubmu Jazz – They were great and you can enjoy their jazz at African Harambee Restaurant on Fridays.

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There were only about 120-130 people near the stage when Yves Francois Et Rocambu Jazz finished their set. The final group was Samba Mapangala & Virunga (Dr. Congo/Kenya) African Rumba and Soukous. What a vibrant sound!

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I was walking around and suddenly groups of people entered the park – it was magical. There were probably more than 400 when the last samba was danced.

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And the dancing began……Thank you boomers for getting everyone on their feet!

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The almost grand finale was interactive with audience participation.

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Alaskans Rally Against Sarah

Opinions, opinions. Some of the signs are priceless!


September 19, 2008

Clueless?

I moved here on September 4, 2002. It was one of the easiest moves I’ve ever experienced. The old place was emptied and everything was placed in its new home between 8AM and 11:30 AM - including the cats. They needed extra special time to get introduced to the layout, the litter location and their favorite furniture. By nightfall, I sat on the living room floor looking out the open window wondering what the hell this place was about. I soon discovered the layers of grime and manipulations and finally began to blog about it. It was street corner and phone talk but not mainstream information unless you mentioned where you lived. Yes, I was aware of some of the bad history of this area.

One of my first posts was about Broadmoor East and this week I posted the latest follow-up. Someone took offense at the way the post was presented and hurled a few choice names my way (via email) – from clueless to lightweight to milk toast. Yeah right.

I made the calls, did the research and the post reflected what I was told – not what I suspected or necessarily believe(d). The term ‘dancing around’ is one clue to my cluelessness. Another would be linking to CIC’s website where one can find names and phone numbers just as I did. Another would be ‘the ward office’ and Michael Land. Humm….those three terms in conjunction with any property North of Howard usually raise flags to anyone who knows the history of this area.

Why would I call and ask for a definition of ‘affordable housing’ if I wasn’t suspicious?

Do we know that CIC + Joe Moore + North of Howard generally indicate Section 8? Sometimes but not always. The last I heard, the new owner wasn’t completely sure which direction he’d be taking – but how do I know it’s true? I don’t. So if anyone wants to pursue the matter further, surely the answers are a few phone calls away. If I can make calls, make follow-up calls, so can anyone.

I expressed my disdain about any more Section 8 being brought into this over-saturated area. I expressed my opinion when I heard Ms. Maurello state that she and Joe had tried to work with Northpoint. If you have an opinion or extra time on your hands, you are free to make calls, start a petition, stand on the corner and yell, demand a community meeting, then please do! Or you may take the easy path and do nothing but complain.

It seems complaining is the one commonality that keeps progress from happening here. People seem to be too consumed with heady arguments, too busy to hit the pavement and get their neighbors opinions. And by neighbors, I mean all of them. Frankly, I don’t care if my neighbors own or rent. What I care about is having a safe, quiet, clean neighborhood. Creating safety is not my job – but that of the alderman and the 24th and owners/managers of the project based buildings the progressives have placed in this nook.

What does Section 8 have to do with it you may ask? “Nothing if the buildings are properly managed, maintained and tenants properly screened and follow HUD's guidelines” would be my response. But that is not the case here and I’ve blogged about it more than some care to hear about. The ratio is off-balance – everyone with a live brain cell knows it – but still the only area to place ‘affordable’ homes is North of Howard.

So excuse me while I wrap this post up – this time without tongue in cheek. It’s time for popcorn and the movie that will invariably play out at the hot spots across the street - courtesy of progressive liberalism fueled by Spartan neighborhood activism. When there is an elevation in activism, the egos seem to deflate the point and purpose and the status quo continues on its lop-sided way.

Don't Forget

The 2008 Rogers Park World Music Festival

Gale Park, 1610 W. Howard Street
Saturday September 20th 11:00 AM until 6:00 PM
Admission is Free

Music Schedule & Time:

Angel In the Solar System, Cuban Soul & Salsa 1:00

Roots Redemption, Reggae 2:00

Andiandi, Pop/R&B 3:00

Yves Francois Et Rocambu, Jazz 4:00

Samba Mapangala & Virunga Dr. Congo/Kenya 5:00
African Rumba & Soukous

For more information call Eva McCann:
773-495-8725 or 773-761-8206
elm@clstoons.com

September 17, 2008

Farnsworth House

Note the 11 on the endangered list for Illinois. The 'threat' is neglect, poor public policy for Cook County Hospital. It will only cost taxpayers $30 million to demolish it.

Farnsworth House and other preservation sites

Broadmoor East Update

A long time Bosworth eyesore will be rehabbed into affordable rentals. The new owner(s) has applied for a zoning change to place 2 residential spaces in a commercial zoning on the ground level of Bosworth.

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I contacted Angela Maurelo, VP of Community Investment Corporation to inquire what was going on with these properties. At first we seemed to be dancing around the meaning of the term 'affordable'. So I politely as possible explained that this small area was over-saturated with section 8 and expressed that concern. Her response was the apartments would be 'affordable' to the residents of the neighborhood. She suggested that I contact my alderman. I did mention the on-going problems that Northpoint has offered the community for years which no one has dealt with. She assured me that both she and the alderman had tried to work with Northpoint. OK.

So, I called the ward office late Wednesday, September 3. I was to get a return call with the information the next day. By Friday, I hadn't received a call or email so called again and asked for Michael Land. He did discuss the term of affordable and further explained the new owner would be seeking a zoning change for the ground level on Bosworth. Unless the former Thrift Shop has a Bosworth address, I'm not sure what he's referring to. The commercial spaces are all on Howard.

The Bosworth courtyard in September, 2008.
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View from the alley of the courtyard that faces north.

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The former Thrift Shop at Bosworth and Howard apparently will become residential rather than commercial and possibly some of the wrap around on Howard.
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Is the past due water bill is tied into the former ownership of Broadmoor East by the heavily layered tax-exemptions of IMC Management that allowed the Bosworth building to remain vacant for years? IMC was dissolved a few years ago.

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The dumpsters have been in the rear courtyard all summer – this is the back side of the buildings facing Howard and Bosworth.

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So, we will wait to see if there are section 8 apartments or not. Hopefully, Mr. Land conveyed the message that the parkway of this property is not the neighbors responsibility to keep trash free as he stated he would.

Let's hope some creativity is exercised on the commercial spaces. We're over-saturated in fast food, shoe stores and dollar stores too.

September 16, 2008

Fool(s) Shoot at Police NOH

Approximately 9:45 PM a neighbor left a voice mail. I returned the call and got the scoop.

The police had detained someone in the alley west of Bosworth by the park. Apparently a real funny joker fired paint balls at the police while they were questioning the person. The 'shots' allegedly came from a window of the Northpoint building at the corner of Jonquil and the alley. There were 8 squads who responded to the scene according to the neighbor who called. Oddly, at the last CAPS meeting the building manager admitted there 'were problems' but she had to catch the perps in the act or she was wasting her time going to court.

Tonights episode sounds like just cause for a search warrant - shooting anything at a cop. If landlords and managers really, really want to get rid of problem tenants - there are several avenues to take.

Tell Us It Ain't So

Howard Street El station has changed but is the gathering place going to revert to the bad old days?

August 16, 2008 was the closing of the Howard Street El station. While it’s a tad inconvenient – especially for the seniors – the new entrance is still clean. Many neighbors have reveled that the drug marketers are no longer slinking there. They've moved – but aren't quite so obvious. When the greasy spoon closed it doors and the barricade went up, at last pedestrians could walk to the train without seeing the usual suspects.

In May 2008 - remember?
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Present view:
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BUT – there’s always a BUT isn’t there? But, rumor has it, the greasy spoon, Pete’s, is hoping to re-open across the street in this building. Perhaps an old timer can recall, but once upon a time there was a hamburger joint on this corner that was a dealer haven in the winter. The neighborhood finally closed it just as they did Pete's.

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The building is for sale - so perhaps the rumor will remain just that - a rumor.

Many of us would like a little place to grab breakfast with a friend or read the paper over a steaming cuppa...but could we have a clean, respectable establishment? The kind with chairs and utensils and no loiterers?

Arise, Howard, from the dust and ashes and regain some glory!

Affordable Housing Petition

Save The Planet While Building Affordable Housing Petition

And, while you’re at it, perhaps you’d like to send a copy of the verbiage to your local politicians. G-Rod doesn’t strike me as being real concerned about anything beyond his limited mental capabilities. He won't be guvnor forever.

1918 - Human Statue of Liberty

An interesting bit of history for the evening!

Many buildings North of Howard were built in 1918, including the one I'm living in.

The Seven Year Plague

The Candidates on the Economy

“It's not that I think John McCain doesn't care what's going on in the lives of most Americans," he said. "I just think he doesn't know."

Obama pointed to McCain's past statements on economic matters as he pressed his case that he is better equipped to bring about change.

"Why else would he say that we've made great progress economically under George Bush?" Obama asked. "Why else would he say that the economy isn't something he understands as well as he should? Why else would he say, today, of all days … that the fundamentals of the economy are still strong?" Source-Chicago Tribune

Cartoon by Tim Jackson
####

The irony of it all - it's worse drop in the market since 9/11/01 or seven (7) years of the Bush Regime. Did anyone check to see how the oil stocks fared? The November winner will have a big mess to clean up that's going to take more than talk,talk.

September 15, 2008

Geography 101 -

All of the Wal-Mart stores across Alabama sold out of ammunition last week. A reliable source said that one of the purchasers commented that while Russia may have invaded Georgia, they sure as hell ain't gonna get away with it in Alabama.

September 14, 2008

Exclusive - 24/7

VerySadNewsFromAlaska

When neighbor Tim Jackson emailed me, we tried to contact Palin by phone, email, and fax. No one responded, therefore, we must blame the media for any inaccuracies.

Political Values

Sarah Palin Is Different?

17a44dc

Palin: Cronyism and Haters

The article is from the New York Times. While some may think Sarah Palin is the epitome of the Women’s Movement that’s their right. If many of the episodes or occurrences in the article are factual, perhaps Sarah should be smoking a cigar between lipstick applications. Calling opponents ‘haters’ is very familiar to many of us who have expected elected officials to be transparent, honest and to do the ‘right thing’ isn’t it? And I’m talking about Democrats! Sarah is no different in that respect…..

On the censorship of books issue:

"People would bring books back censored,” recalled former Mayor John Stein, Ms. Palin’s predecessor. “Pages would get marked up or torn out.”
Witnesses and contemporary news accounts say Ms. Palin asked the librarian about removing books from the shelves. The McCain-Palin presidential campaign says Ms. Palin never advocated censorship.

But in 1995, Ms. Palin, then a city councilwoman, told colleagues that she had noticed the book “Daddy’s Roommate” on the shelves and that it did not belong there, according to Ms. Chase and Mr. Stein. Ms. Chase read the book, which helps children understand homosexuality, and said it was inoffensive; she suggested that Ms. Palin read it."

Gee, just like G-Rod and a few others huh? So there’s slackin’ on both sides of the political fence.

"Many lawmakers contend that Ms. Palin is overly reliant on a small inner circle that leaves her isolated. Democrats and Republicans alike describe her as often missing in action. Since taking office in 2007, Ms. Palin has spent 312 nights at her Wasilla home, some 600 miles to the north of the governor’s mansion in Juneau, records show.

During the last legislative session, some lawmakers became so frustrated with her absences that they took to wearing “Where’s Sarah?” pins.

Many politicians say they typically learn of her initiatives — and vetoes — from news releases."

Just like the ‘done deals’ we hear about after the backroom deals huh? Sarah’s apparently no different…..

As for the ‘missing in action’ frustration…we’re paying their salaries – all of them and here's the a part of the real censorship they ALL utilize:

"Dan Fagan, a prominent conservative radio host and longtime friend of Ms. Palin, urged his listeners to vote for her in 2006. But when he took her to task for raising taxes on oil companies, he said, he found himself branded a “hater.”

It is part of a pattern, Mr. Fagan said, in which Ms. Palin characterizes critics as “bad people who are anti-Alaska.”

As Ms. Palin’s star ascends, the McCain campaign, as often happens in national races, is controlling the words of those who know her well. Her mother-in-law, Faye Palin, has been asked not to speak to reporters, and aides sit in on interviews with old friends.

At a recent lunch gathering, an official with the Wasilla Chamber of Commerce asked its members to refer all calls from reporters to the governor’s office. Dianne Woodruff, a city councilwoman, shook her head.

“I was thinking, I don’t remember giving up my First Amendment rights,” Ms. Woodruff said. “Just because you’re not going gaga over Sarah doesn’t mean you can’t speak your mind.”

There are so many skeletons in the closets - Halloween should really be noisy this election year.

September 12, 2008

Oh Woe, The Royal Furlough

My God, Berney gave up $832 in pay this year! That’s just a damn shame isn’t it? He may have to file bankruptcy if Daley doesn't get off Stone's Royal. How much money do we ‘forfeit' with the highest sales tax in the country?

Well, Berney, you can kiss our royal taxpaying behinds too

Do you think Berney et al are being selfish? What happened to all this team player crap? You know, the 'we're in this together, we have expenses too, we have to make sacrifices' bla bla bla.

Meanwhile, the mother company wants to recoup money and upgrade our antiquated electric grid. It has to be NOW not spread out over a sensible term and is effective Sunday. Get those energy saver bulbs and if you’re not in the room – turn the light off. ComEd Rate Hikes

Here’s Huberman’s genius pilot plan to accommodate more riders on certain brown line train cars. Riders know the joy of paying money to stand squeezed in someone’s armpit with a briefcase jammed into their ribs! Ron has found a way to increase that morning high. Just get that monthly pass and ride the CTA

Ladies - if you're one of those commuters who does hair and make up in transit - stay off the first two cars.

September 11, 2008

From and For The Women

A friend forwarded this last night. The octogenarian women picked up on this act!

September 8, 2008

Vacancies North of Howard

7714 N Marshfield was apparently sold in auction – reason unknown.

GEDC0101 GEDC0102 GEDC0103

Further north on Marshfield, this building sits vacant and boarded up. Earlier in the year there were for sale signs on this property.

7700 Block of N Marshfield GEDC0086

7711 Ashland has been ‘vacant’ for some time. Allegedly there had been squatters inside but since the police made a visit all has been relatively quiet. Yet the entrance to the back of the building easily provides a campground or party place.

GEDC0106 7711 N Ashland unsecured rear entry

Hopefully our neighbors on the West side of town will have good people purchase these properties. About the last thing any block North of Howard needs is another non-resident owner/landlord who sees nothing, hears nothing, does nothing and isn’t forced to do anything. We have enough already.

Every Day Is A Holiday North of Howard

The weekend was nearly as noisy as Labor Day without the holiday. But nearly every day is a holiday North of Howard. Yes, I am dissing the neighborhood again and when the level of disgusting behavior disturbs neighbors in the confines of their own domiciles that’s what happens.

I was working on one of my projects (in the back of the house) when the noise level from the street got higher. Around 10PM I heard a male voice yelling ‘shut the f*#k up’ - probably from a window. A little later, I called a neighbor to see what was happening on his end of the block. The two Northpoint buildings had an on-going loitering party and people were shuffling between that end of the street and mine.

Around 12:30 AM the noise level had not lowered and when I looked out the front window there was a small ‘party’ across the street. The party was attended by both genders, a baby in stroller and 3-4 small children who were playing in the dirt everyone pisses and spits on. There were 15-20 people in total. And of course, the circling bicycle boys stopped now and again.

At 3:00 AM, I finished my project and the party was still going on. At least the good mothers had taken the kids home to bed – finally.

Perhaps the bleedin’ hearts would like to join the NOH neighbors next Saturday night and watch this movie? No charge for the popcorn!

Maybe we could persuade the party to move to the bleedin’ hearts street so they could have a good dose of what they created in this little neighborhood. Perhaps their stalker blogger could stop by and ‘stare’. I doubt it would last until 3:00 AM with the police just doing drive-by and drive-on on their street.

September 3, 2008

Gems of Summer

Triangle Park Nature Garden

Triangle Park Nature Garden

Community Garden

Corn in Community Garden

Sunflower

Gale Park Fence

Just in case no one noticed – the new fence damaged by a runaway car has been repaired.

GEDC0089 GEDC0088

In case no one noticed, the hoops are up.
GEDC0096

The hoops are put up when the building is open and taken down before closing. Many complained about their absence most of the summer – but the building was in limbo until it opened. The park supervisor was floating around from one northside park to another from April to August. Without park employees on the premises, the hoops stayed down.

While the complaints may continue – would you leave your bike in the yard while you were away for a day, week or month? I doubt it – but there are those who will argue for the sake of arguing. The park closes at 9pm and the police have been cruising through it lately at night.

Track Your TIF Dollar$

Please review and submit this Tax Increment Financing (TIF) Interested Parties Registry Form, provided by the City's Department of Planning and Development (DPD). The forms were created by the 1999 TIF Reform Act and provides you the right to receive information on your local TIF when under consideration by City Council and its implementation committee (being the Chicago Plan Commission or the Chicago Development Commission). When completing this form be specific about the TIF district you are interested in monitoring. You can register as a resident of the City of Chicago or for an organization within the city. There are 158 TIF districts within the City of Chicago.

This year alone, the Chicago Park District has received over $12 million in TIF dollars from City hall toward a host of park projects. You too can direct where your tax dollars are spent! Get registered today and begin tracking TIF activity in your neighborhood. More information will follow on this subject matter.

If any assistance is needed, please call John Paul Jones, FOTP's Director of Neighborhood Parks and Community Relations at (312) 857-2757 ext. 15.