First off congratulations to the Capital Fax for being named one of the best blogs, well because it is! (By Chicago Magazine)
Thanks to Rich Miller blog owner and political writer, and a hard working one at that! A big thanks, and a picture of US Cellular because Rich is also a fellow Sox Fan!

The Chicago Tribune printed phone numbers of all the Cook County Commissioners that vote for Todd Stroger's sales tax increase. Then Chicago Tribune is also printing each and every day the days until all of the Commissioners, including Mr. President Toddler up up for re-election, thanks Tribune.

Now there is another number today, one for the Southtown Star, email if you prefer, let them know what you think about Todd Stroger and how well he is doing.
The Southtown Star has done the best job covering Cook County and Cook County events, even though their publication is mostly bought in Commissioner John Daley's district.




"I'm doing what's best for the people. That's how I'm running the government. And until this place falls apart, then I'll step up and say, you know what, I screwed up," Stroger said. "But until then, I'll tell you I'm doing a damn good job."



Effort to repeal Cook County sales tax fails Stroger defends his governing abilities

July 23, 2008Recommend (1)

BY MARK KONKOL, sun-times news group
Self-described Cook County Board reformers took one last shot at repealing the county's sales tax increase that went into effect this month, but they didn't have the votes to make it happen.

The county board on Tuesday easily killed the sales tax rollback plan offered by Commissioner Tony Peraica.

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• 'I'm doing a damn good job'
The proposal sparked a lengthy debate peppered with finger-pointing, name-calling and tricky parliamentary maneuvers that ended in an anti-climactic 10-to-7 vote.

Peraica took most of the heat. Commissioner Earlean Collins said Peraica's move was "all talk." Other board members criticized Peraica for being "irresponsible" by trying to repeal the tax in the middle of the year.

"To vote in favor of the repeal of the sales tax today would be to send our government to bankruptcy court possibly or to stop essential services," Commissioner Roberto Maldonado said.

When the rather long-winded arguments were over, Board President Todd Stroger said he is irritated by the constant criticism of his administration.

"I'm doing what's best for the people. That's how I'm running the government. And until this place falls apart, then I'll step up and say, you know what, I screwed up," Stroger said. "But until then, I'll tell you I'm doing a damn good job."

The tax has been controversial throughout the county. Businesses say they are losing sales to bordering counties. City officials in Palatine have even begun agitating for secession from Cook County.

On July 1, the county's portion of the sales tax increased 1 percentage point - a penny on the dollar - to 1.75 percent, giving Chicago the highest sales tax in the country at 10.25 percent.

When Peraica realized he didn't have support to overturn the tax hike, he tried to delay a vote. But commissioners who supported the sales tax increase pressed the issue.

Some commissioners said Peraica - the Republican candidate for Cook County State's Attorney - brought the sales tax issue back as a stunt to get publicity for his campaign.

Peraica said that's not true.

"I want to make sure I get the nine votes and repeal this tax and put the onus on the president of the county board to veto it. And then try to get the votes to override the veto," he said. "Is it simple or easy? No. Is it worth trying? Yes. And I'd do it again."

What do you think? Is Todd Stroger doing "a damn fine job"? Comment on this story at SouthtownStar.com or call Speak Out at 708 633-6785. You can also e-mail at SpeakOut@southtownstar.com

Important Cook County phone numbers



Most of the votes were predictable. Some were not, I expected Earlean Collins to not cave in, but instead she voted along party lines. Democrats Commissioner Maldonado, Commissioner Claypool or Commissioner Quigley decided that issues were more of a priority. Then the last Democrat just needed some leaning on by the Unions, yes, Commissioner Suffredin, and his deciding vote help Stroger win.

Please don't beat up on Tom Dart, Mr. Fitzgerald




Before you come down on Tom Dart, Mr. Fitzgerald get a reality check on the Cook County situation, out Sheriff has been dealing with.

Tom Dart, Cook County Sheriff, has had to deal with budget cuts each and every year. Thanks to Todd Stroger, President of Cook County. Tom Dart is forced to deal with a smaller budget and staff. This in combination with the Cook County (CC) Prosecutor cuts. Due to less prosecutors, as well as public defenders, as CC State's attorney Dick Devine well knows, it is taking longer for cases to come to trial, thus longer stays at CC Jail. Tom Dart has eliminated putting many in jail overnight to alleviate the problem by letting them post bond at other CC facilities, to keep them out of the already busting at the seams CC Jail. This is due mostly to prosecutor and defense attorney cuts, as well as cuts in the CC correctional facilities.

I think Tom Dart is doing an exceptional job considering all he has had fall in his lap, thanks again to Todd Stroger, and Daddy Stroger before him.

Tom Dart has also had to put up with public attacks from CC President Stroger, and has fought the good fight with him all the time. Now that Dick Devine, the other Stroger nemesis, will not be running for CC State's Attorney again, that leaves Tom Dart to battle the Todd by himself.

This is totally unfair to Tom Dart, Mr. Fitzgerald, aren't there enough people in this state to go after? When are the rest of Public official A through whatever you are up to now going to trial? Remember, Cellini, Kelly, and all the rest? Isn't Stuart Levine still cooperating, you know snitching? Or is he not believable since he admitted a drug problem in the Rezko trial? Leave Tom Dart alone, he is doing a fantastic wonderful job considering all he has to deal with. Could anyone do better? Mr. Fitzgerald, before you go after Tom Dart, could you do as good of a job as he has? If you think so, run for CC Sheriff next election.

First off we should not have Todd as CC President. When John Stroger, then CC President, Daddy of Todd, fell ill, yes a Public employee in charge of the second most populous County in this Country, they told one lie after another about his condition. This was wrong, and during an election for CC President. Doctor's treating John Stroger would enter in and out of the Hospital alleys to avoid the press, until the press got smart to that. Then these Physicians had the deer in headlights look when they were caught by reporters as they left the service elevators in the alley. The Stroger camp continuously lied to the public about John Stroger's condition until after all deadlines had passed to enter the race as a candidate for CC President, then John Stroger could barely made some type of illegible scribble on his resignation. OK, did someone hold a pen in John Stroger's hand and move the paper? Did John Stroger have any idea what so possibly ever what he was signing? Then they put the Toddler in for the candidate for CC President. Then Bill Beavers left his City of Chicago Alderman post, to be anointed the CC Commissioner post that Daddy Stroger left. Of course Bill Beavers had to anoints his Daughter Darcel to his Aldermatic post. Then there was Bobbie Steele who became interim CC President, only to wait until after the elections to anoints her son Robert to her CC Commissioner post........OK. But summing it all up, all of this highly questionable and barely legal activities ran amok, and Mr. Fitzgerald did nothing........but now he is like a mad dog going after Tom Dart. Tom Dart, yes, Tom Dart, he is after Tom Dart, so many can not believe, Tom Dart. sigh

Then after Todd Stroger became CC President, reporters asked him what his Dad thought.....Todd gave the Todd smirk and shrug and could not answer.
I still can't believe, he is attacking Tom Dart? With all the people in Government, City, County positions in this City, County and State to go after.......Tom Dart? sigh The US Attorney's office has a whole alphabet of suspects in many, many pages to go after, and they go after Tom Dart? sigh

Tom Dart, you have more people on your side, and who support you more than you could ever possibly imagine, and feel badly, and really saddened by this attack by the US Attorney.

Tom Dart is getting blamed for poor medical and dental care at the Jail. This was all part of the Bureau of Health cuts that Tom Dart fought tooth and nail. The report was given by the US Attorney's office was so unfair in so many ways, and did not take into consideration that Tom Dart accomplished so much during his tenure as Sheriff, and that he is not a miracle worker. Given the many multitudes of obstacles and obstinate CC President, Tom Dart appeared to be a miracle worker, that is until the US Attorney's office attacked him so unnecessarily and relentlessly.sigh With so many letters of the alphabet to go through, the US Attorney had to go after Tom Dart. sigh

Wouldn't it make more sense to go full steam ahead on Todd Stroger instead? Tom Dart has inherited a multitude of problems left over from the last Stroger rein, and he has an done an exemplary job, and not only that but with all the additional problems brought on with this current Stroger regime.

Many fear that if Alvarez wins the CC State's Attorney next election she won't be strong enough to go up against Stroger, here's were there we know that Tony Peraica should he win against her will live to call Stroger out on everything. Tony Peraica winning the CC State's Attorney will be the biggest nightmare for Todd Stroger, Lance Tyson, and all the cohorts.

Yes, there is problems at CC Jail, lot's of them, but Tom Dart is doing the very best he can, given all he has inherited, all the budgetary restrictions, all the opposition from Stroger & cohorts, and now he is being attacked by the US Attorney's office.sigh



Federal investigation rips Cook County Jail

July 17, 2008

BY Mike Robinson The Associated Press
A 17-month federal investigation has found numerous abuses at the nation's largest single-site county jail, including a failure to protect prisoners from being harmed by other inmates and staff, officials said today.

Cook County Jail inmates were not only unprotected from excessive force by staff and violence from fellow prisoners but the jail failed to provide adequate medical and mental health care, fire prevention and sanitation, the investigation found.

"The Cook County Jail has an obligation to provide conditions of confinement that do not offend the Constitution and take reasonable measures to protect inmates from harm," U.S. Attorney Patrick J. Fitzgerald said. "The investigation clearly found that the jail failed that test."

Fitzgerald planned a news conference to discuss findings outlined in a 98-page Justice Department letter detailing the alleged abuses. It was given to Cook County Board President Todd Stroger and Sheriff Tom Dart a week ago, federal officials said.

Telephone messages seeking comment were left Thursday for Stroger and Dart.

While it found many faults with the jail, the letter commended jail staff for cooperating during the civil investigation.

The Cook County Jail sits on 96 acres on Chicago's West Side and has a daily population of about 9,800 male and female inmates, most awaiting trial in the state's criminal court system, making it the nation's largest single-site county jail, federal officials said.

Federal officials said inmate violence in 2006 resulted in the death of two prisoners. They said that in one week in March 2007, the jail documented 35 inmate fights and the use of force to stop them was required in 27 instances. Guards confiscated 46 weapons from inmates.

The report said inmates are regularly subjected to inappropriate and excessive use of physical force. The investigation found such force has sometimes been used after the inmates already were restrained.

Taste of Chicago 2008 Review







Noticeably gone this year was the water log ride. I guess it was replaced with the Illinois Lottery Taste Stage? But that mad the ride for the United Ferris Wheel longer since that was the only teenage and adult ride.

There was definitely a lot of Olympic promotion going on, there was a nice fenced off area so you can view the balloon and flags with the Olympic insignias.

There was also a Jumbo Screen TV by Buckingham fountain. Not a lot of interest, especially since people go to events to get away from TV. Also it was playing reruns of late night TV shows.

The family village was moved to the front rather than the end, at least everyone with kids did not have to go far to find something of interest for the children.

It seems like tickets did not go very far. It seems like everything cost more tickets.

One of the new food vendors Hash browns did a lot with sweet potatoes from hash browns to cheesecake. One of my son's had both and said they were great. The Adobo Grill was also new and the chips and guacamole were good. I was glad I did not want to wait in the long line of one of the new food vendors last year that had contamination issues, and I did not see them this year.

The good old vendors, BJ's mustard fried catfish is always good. Mazzone's Italian ice is always good. Sabor Latino I am sure this one only it's second year I stayed away from it's steak and onion sandwich because the meat was way too chewy last year.

Polo Cafe from Bridgeport has a don't miss crab cake nuggets, one son had two full orders of these.
The Oak Street Beach Cafe's grilled shrimp is something my other son never wants to miss, he had to hit this booth again this year.
Franco's Ristorante has a watermelon Italian ice that everyone should try, we have to get that every year.

Tutto Italiano had Italian fries one son thought they needed ketchup, we went there for the Coconut lime sorbet, but that was changed to the chocolate chip gellatto, one son and I are lactose intolerant, but the son who was not said it was good ice cream. The only Greek Town Restaurant there was Costa's, there Greek chicken on a pita was good as usual.

Even though a lot of people were getting the plates full of homemade potato chips from Harry Carey's, we had to pass on that.

There was the usual tour boats selling tours at Buckingham fountain. I don't know when they are going to build a bridge over LSD (Lake Shore Drive, or an underpass like they have up north by North Avenue, so people could cross at Queen's Landing again. It was nice when you could cross there instead of going all the way to Balbo.

Not enough time to go to Sox games







There is never enough time to take in all the Sox games.

Ok, I have been working way too much.....way too much.

Then I have been trying to go to as many Sox games, err pay Pilgrimage to my favorite South Side Guys.

By the way they are really great this year, but aren't they every year.

Ozzie is, well just perfect for the South siders, we just love him and how he handles the press.

By the way there are so many good looking guys on one team. I hope the rumors about trading Joe Crede are just that.





He says it's not about the money....don't believe it

All the rumors saying it's about taking a cut to make only $800,000 a year. Where is this blowhard going to get that kind of money? How was he making more than that for so long? Overpaid.......YES. Arrogant blowhard, YES. Will he be missed........NO. Is there better talk show hosts for the Sox radio....absolutley. Will they take less than $800K, yes. Good for the Score getting rid of him and saving money.

North says he's done at The Score


Radio personality Mike North announced Tuesday through his Web site that he will not return to WSCR-AM (670).

"I am now done at the Score," North wrote on www.northtonorth.com. "I met with management this past Friday and since I wouldn't accept the deal they offered; they told me I wasn't allowed to be on the air anymore."

He then launched into a lengthy good-bye that ended with, "You'll be hearing from us real soon. Keep your eyes and ears open and stay tuned."

North's contract, reportedly worth $1.5 million annually, expires July 1. WSCR management was believed to have offered North a deal worth less money and, reportedly, with an altered role at the station.

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