You bet I will, Will!

October 1, 2011

A hearty “Huzzah!” to Will County activists who took the common sense and fiscal responsibility of single payer straight to Will County’s board.

Argue with ’em if you think you can, but we don’t think you can.
Well done!


“We know what you do at night.”

December 2, 2010

Sen. Rickey Hendon’s rhetorical mastery of the obvious deserves a watch.
It ain’t full equality, but at least it’s officially a conversation, with legal status.

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We’re Back, and We’re Bowling!

November 23, 2010

Illinois Media Progressives has as much trouble dealing with this post-modern economy as any honest American, but one thing we’ll never have an issue with is hurling a spheroid down an oiled wooden floor at a bunch of wooden sticks.

Especially if we’re doing it with single payer activists, some of our favorite peeps ever.

So we’re pleased as punch to co-host the third annual
“Single Payer Bowling” with special guests, Donna And Larry Smith.

And we’re downright thrilled to join with the Illinois Single Payer Coalition, Progressive Democrats of America, Chicago, and the Chicago Single Payer Action Network to make “SP Bowling III” the biggest and bestest yet.

Join us Saturday, December 11th, 1:30-4:00 p.m., Diversey River Bowl.

SIGN UP FOR SINGLE PAYER BOWLING HERE

And here’s a personal message from Single Payer Bowling Spokesbowlers, Paulie and Otis:

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Cleaning Up Chicago and Calling Out for Champions

April 22, 2010

Unsustainable energy sources are so 40 years ago but they continue to feed the need and in the process, muck up our lives and our planet.

Recently, IMPs met up with one of the leaders of the Chicago Clean Power Coalition Becky Clayborn at the April meeting of PDA Illinois. Clayborn, also of the Sierra Club, pointed out the deadly health and environmental risks of coal-fired power plants in the United States and in Chicago.

Specifically, the Fisk and Crawford plants on the South and near South West side of Chicago. These two plants have caused major health problems in their surrounding communities of Pilsen and Little Village.

“They have the highest population of individuals around these two coal-fired power plants in Chicago than of any other coal-fired power plant in America,” Clayborn said.

Among the many noxious toxins that these plants belch out, it’s the fine particulate matter that becomes disturbingly deeply embedded.

“Basically, it’s as if the inside of your lungs have been sunburned,” Clayborn said.

Ouch.

These particles can also be carried over long distances by wind and then settle on ground or water. This settlement makes lakes and streams acidic; changes the nutrient balance in coastal waters and large river basins; depletes the nutrients in soil; damages sensitive forests and farm crops; and affects the diversity of ecosystems.

Ouch, pt.2

Clayborn also discussed the plans to pass a new Chicago-Clean Power Ordinance that would significantly reduce these harmful emissions from Chicago’s coal plants, championed by Alderman Joe Moore of the 49th Ward.

At his April 13 City Hall press conference in front of nearly 200 supporters from a variety of environmental, social justice, health and neighborhood organizations Moore said:

“We’re asking these plants to do business in a way that does not endanger the health of Chicago’s citizens,” said Alderman Moore. “I’m asking my fellow council members to protect public health and improve Chicagoan’s quality of life by voting for the Clean Power Ordinance.”

UPDATE:
Here’s Moore himself at PDA’s May meeting asking for our support in getting our Alderpeople on board this historic city ordinance. “Chicago can lead the way.”
Go Joe!

This kind of pollution does not respect Ward boundaries, so good on every member who signs on.

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Moron Bites Back: Rich Miller’s Revisionist History

December 9, 2009

An astute IMP reader informed us of “Capitol Fax” uber-blogger Rich Miller’s foray yesterday into the land of adolescent personality politics.

And it seems to be well worn ground for Miller, at least where it comes to one gentleman.

Apparently Rich has fashioned himself as an authority on Civil War politics, specifically Ole Abe himself, and has used/is using that hyper-inflated belief in an attempt to smear an individual for voicing an opinion over three years ago.

That individual would be one John Laesch, former Congressional candidate in IL-14 district.

John, if you don’t recall, came within a handful of votes of winning IL-14’s 2008 Democratic general primary, despite being outspent 17-1 by the eventual victor, Bill Foster.
Less than 1/2 of 1 percent, in a honest-to-gawd grass roots campaign.

So Rich Miller, who has shown an amazing amount of competence in bringing news of Springfield’s chicanery and general goings-on to the masses, apparently decided attacking John Laesch was worthy of the day’s news, and re-posted, in the words of commenter “How Diasappointing”, an “isolated soundbite” of video of Laesch at a campaign event over three years ago.

The clip, originally posted on a Laesch smear site on YouTube, is an 18 second excerpt from 2006, where Laesch suggests that President Lincoln acted predominantly upon economic, rather than moral concerns when issuing the Emancipation Proclamation.

Miller’s transcription of the clip:

“Abraham Lincoln, I don’t know if you know this, he didn’t [free the slaves] for the right reason, social justice. He just did it because so many white people were out of work because they couldn’t compete with slave labor.”

Miller finds that prospect, or we should say, that isolated video soundbite amusing, and when challenged by a commenter on his site,

– How Disappointing – Tuesday, Dec 8, 09 @ 4:22 pm:

Wow, Mr. Miller, personal attack politics do not become you…BTW, I do love isolated sound-bites that lead to historical discussions in the comments. Perhaps you could tell us, since you saw fit to try and ridicule Mr. Laesch for his opinion, what the impact of slave labor was, and please detail the evolution of Mr. Lincoln’s position regarding slavery as a moral question. Feel free to cite historians of note.

I’m assuming you must have this information, no?

Rich responds in a fit of rhetorical maturity:

– Rich Miller – Tuesday, Dec 8, 09 @ 4:32 pm:

HD, I’ve read quite a lot of Lincoln history, so I think I’d put my perspective up against yours any day. To defend Laesch’s moronic statement is just goofy, especially considering that legalizing slavery was an active subject in Illinois up to and during Lincolns tenure in the Illinois House and he fought against it.

So, bite me, moron.

The commenter responded:

– How Diappointing – Tuesday, Dec 8, 09 @ 5:42 pm:

Never suggested any expertise in the period-but figured you must, since you saw fit to try and ridicule someone else’s opinion.

Please do provide cites, and why you feel they are the most accurate historical works…And the use of sound bites from political attack sites is not only poor journalism, it’s also reflective of the poster’s personal integrity.

(Please feel free to read the –whole thread– IMPs is happy to drive traffic to Rich’s site for this one) There were 45 comments when he closed the thread last evening.

So IMPs, not well-versed in 19th century American history, (not unlike the commenter) turned to teh almighty Google which took exactly .31 seconds to return this piece, published in the New York Review of Books earlier this year.

Esteemed Northwestern University Professor Garry Wills reviewed a book edited by esteemed Harvard Professor Henry Louis Gates, Jr. (yes, President Obama’s beer buddy) on Abraham Lincoln’s own words on racism and slavery.

Prof. Wills:

So deep was Lincoln’s belief in a free market of labor that he condemned slavery for impinging on the free whites’ right to the fruits of their work. The slave owners’ profits from the unrequited toil of their slaves gave them an advantage over those who paid their workers, making the latter less competitive than they would otherwise be. One of the reasons Lincoln wanted to keep slavery from the territories was to protect the opportunities of free white workers…

.31 seconds. Love technology.

So intellectually, Rich’s attempt to smear Laesch is unsound to say the least, and although we will acknowledge that a young candidate’s attempt to shorthand a complex issue was somewhat clunky, we also acknowledge that Laesch’s point is in fine intellectual company in the ongoing historical debate as to Lincoln’s motives.

The exchange between Miller and the commenter continued, with highlights including Miller’s use of the words “sillyness”, “moronic”, and a plea in defense of the right to make fun of people. All in a rather blood-bathy string of comments, in which even Georgia (Georgia10, former front-pager for Daily Kos, now an employee of the Gianoullias’ campaign) felt need to jump in to defend her credentials.

IMPs knows politics is not a business for the faint of heart or willowy of spine, but we wonder, why John Laesch?

-As Miller was attempting to hold Laesch up to ridicule to reflect upon the gentleman for whom he now works, one hypothesis suggests his loyalties could lie with the opposing camp.

-A less strategic and base musing is that Miller holds some personal vitriol for the man.

-And the armchair guess following a few libations was that Rich, once the outsider blogging voice for Springfield, has become entrenched in the “inside the corn-belt-way thinking” that he had initially charged himself with exposing, and is well on his way to becoming part of that problem.

Feel free, at this point, to infer that IMPs holds John Laesch in high regard, which is true, and we are few of many (31,587 Democratic voters within IL-14 alone).

But we offer full disclosure – before IMPs was IMPs, we had occasion to work for John Laesch, primarily because of his political courage and intestinal fortitude to run on what IMPs considers the obvious: that a single payer, expanded and improved Medicare for All solution to our nation’s health care crisis was, and still is, the only fiscally and morally responsible reform.

But this was only one plank of a platform that included fair, not free trade with a focus on jobs, and (as a Navy veteran), strong opposition to Bush’s Iraq war, investment in green energy and locally, opposition to the Hastert highway.

This was while his opponent was hawking biometric national ID cards as an immigration solution.

John’s positions were consistently measured against the obvious, that Illinois families are hurting (which is still horribly true).

His campaign inspired many to become further involved in politics, including a few of his old staff who have run for office themselves. And for IMPs, anyway, we were moved to take a serious look at his present employer’s campaign after John became involved, because we knew there would be a strong voice in support of Illinois’ working families. They are hurting, you know.

But none of this is apparently relevant to Rich Miller, who takes more delight in channeling his nine year-old self.

The question as to why remains open, but since our political encounter with John Laesch, IMPs is proud and honored to count him among our most trusted and respected friends, which is why we feel a compelling need to stand against what would appear to be chronic, coordinated character defamation.

And this is unfortunately old news. During his last run for Congress, Laesch was also at the receiving end of one of the most vicious smear campaigns IMPs has witnessed, and Miller took the low road back then too in not taking a strong stand against the politics of personal destruction.

The three year old smear site on YouTube that Miller chooses to reference is also a little peculiar in its following:

Rich, you’re on the wrong side of history on this one, and you owe John Laesch an apology.

cross posted at Progressive Fox

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“Cigna 7” Chicago, Jennifer’s Story

October 13, 2009

Because it needs to be told.

Mobilize for Health Care, Thursday, October 15th.
Join the nationwide protests.
This stops, when we say.

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Oh Irony Meter..Bank of America’s Got You Pegged

October 13, 2009

As Bank of America basks in its $45 billion of bailout, turns out it comes up a little short on using that bounty to actually help people.

Just outside the elevators of their vast third-floor command center, attached to the wall, is a cardboard thermometer that shows them inching toward their goal of signing up 125,000 struggling borrowers for a federal program to modify their mortgages…But with weeks remaining to meet the November deadline set by the Obama administration, Bank of America is trailing well behind the other large banks, according to Treasury Department data.

BOA’s mortgage relief temperature may be tepid, but leave it to BOA to raise it to a boil with a dose of surrealistic irony.

…some Bank of America employees continue to express skepticism about whether all of those seeking assistance really need it. “There’s a difference between hardship and entitlement,” said Jerry Durham, Bank of America’s vice president of home retention.

Unintended Master of the Obvious Award Recipient du Jour,
Self Awareness Not Included.

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