STUMP » Articles » Whatsa Matter Rahm? Anything Getting You Down? » 15 December 2015, 08:16

Where Stu & MP spout off about everything.

Whatsa Matter Rahm? Anything Getting You Down?  


15 December 2015, 08:16

Look at that punim.

Why so gloomy?


Several things are hitting at once, but for a lovely retrospective, take a gander at this website: Rahm’s Accomplishments

Chicago likes a tough mayor that gets things done. Let’s take a look at what Mayor Rahm Emanuel has done in his short tenure. From finance and crime, to education and jobs, Rahm has touched every aspect of our city in less than four years.

Under-resourced schools
Finance & Ethics
Refusing to comply with FOIA law.
Former congressional aide became lobbyist for Xerox just before red light camera contract was awarded
Chicago’s bond rating dropped to near junk-bond levels.
Closed 54 schools yet has $1.71 billion in special accounts often used to finance corporate subsidies.
Fails to hold charter schools accountable in the same way neighborhood schools are held accountable.
Crime & Safety
Crime statistics altered to hide murder rate, including a woman who was bound and gagged declared dead not from murder but by “unspecified means”.
Chicago Murder rates increase 50%.
Number of shootings increases.
Spends $95 million in police overtime.
Employment & Poverty
Outsourcing City of Chicago utility call center to Japan.
The Chicago Infrastructure Trust, despite many promises of savings to the city, ended up costing millions in attorney fees and staff time only to produce the repackaging of an effort that had been underway by the PBC since 2009.
Chicago’s African-American unemployment rate higher than other large cities.
Does Rahm deserve another four years?

Too bad he’s not up for re-election til 2019….or can he be gotten rid of sooner?


Recall isn’t in the cards, alas:

But what about Mayor Emanuel, who’s not scheduled to face Chicago voters until 2019?

The simple answer: He can’t be impeached or recalled because there’s nothing in city or state law to facilitate either draconian measure.

In fact, the only example we found of a local recall was in northwest suburban Buffalo Grove, where officials passed an ordinance that led to the recall of an unpopular trustee in 2010.

That suggests Chicago aldermen could consider a similar measure to recall Emanuel, but City Council rarely challenges a mayor on little things, so a full frontal assault is highly unlikely.

That may explain why a state representative filed legislation in Springfield last week that would give city voters a chance to recall Emanuel by referendum.

It’s creating a buzz, but who knows where it’s going.

Not yet, at any rate.

He could be hounded out of office… driven to resign…. but what are the chances of that?

If he wasn’t deterred by the fact that Daley got out while the going was good, why would he quit now? His pride is on the line!


There’s a couple issues going on right now. The one in the headlines is the release of the video of Laquan McDonald being shot dead by Chicago cops (after the video had been suppressed), and I see there’s another death-by-cop video being suppressed:

But there is a new name of a 17-year-old, Cedrick Chatman, and you need to know it. Say it with me, Cedrick Chatman. “Who? What? Why do I have to remember yet another name?”

Less than a week ago, Rahm Emanuel tried to cover his complicity in the concealment of Laquan McDonald’s murder with the words, “It starts today. It starts now.” And even as those words left his lips, the video of Cedrick Chatman’s murder remained concealed.

People far more optimistic than this old lawyer about reform spend their time explaining how the empty rhetoric from guys in important official positions demonstrates . . . something. They explain how tepid reforms, if reforms at all, will change everything. Having lived through such rosy predictions before, and watched as it all fell back to shit as soon as public attention turned to the next shiny thing, I wasn’t buying. It’s not that I wanted to be right, but experience hardens one to the difference between talk and action.

Talk is cheap. The continued concealment of Cedrick Chatman’s video is the action that belies Rahm’s effort to soothe the gullible public. And before anybody thinks this is just a Rahm Emanuel, the Second City’s First Liar, problem, he’s not “the” problem, but just the poster boy for the scheme to calm the looming disaster of public outrage and mistrust of police.

Thing is, the cop problem in Chicago specifically goes way, way back.

From the Daley days:

What? It took a video to teach you there’s a code of silence in the police department in which cops look the other way when the bad apples do their thing?

Let me remind you that police officer Jon Burge was torturing confessions from suspects in the back rooms of police stations during the 1980s, when Richard Daley was state’s attorney.

And you elected Daley six times as your mayor.

You’d probably still be electing him if he hadn’t gotten tired of the gig and walk away.
I hate to say it, Chicago. But as the mayor might put it—you own this.

Jon Burge? What was that?

Here’s a recent retrospective by one who investigated:

From 1987 to 1995, I was an investigator for the Chicago Police Department’s Office of Professional Standards (OPS), a civilian unit that investigated complaints of misconduct, especially excessive force. I questioned hundreds of officers about a range of misconduct allegations, everything from handcuffs-too-tight beefs to broken ribs to suffocation with a plastic bag. I was used to seeing cops shut down.

My highest-profile and most sensitive case was the reinvestigation of Andrew Wilson’s allegations of torture against former police commander Jon Burge. In 1993, as a result of my investigation and the Police Board hearing that followed, Burge was fired from the department. In 2010 he was convicted on federal charges of perjury and is currently serving a four-and-a-half-year sentence.

Oh wait… is he already out?

Yep, back in February:

Disgraced former Chicago police Cmdr. Jon Burge was released Friday from home confinement, ending his 4 1/2–year prison sentence for lying under oath about the torture of criminal suspects.

Burge had been finishing off his federal sentence on home-monitoring since Oct. 2 after checking into a Florida halfway house that same day, said Ed Ross, a spokesman for the U.S. Bureau of Prisons. Before that, he had served his time in a low-security federal prison in North Carolina since 2011.

I’m guessing he’s not going back to Chicago.

And yes, he’s still getting his pension:

Burge continues to generate controversy for collecting a $4,000-a-month police pension despite costing the city tens of millions of dollars in legal costs because of lawsuits related to the torture and abuse. Attorney General Lisa Madigan filed suit to challenge the decision, but the Illinois Supreme Court ruled she did not have the standing to take up the matter.

Lovely. The wiki entry on Burge is rather extensive.

Take a look at this:

On April 14, 2015, the Mayor of Chicago, Rahm Emanuel, announced the creation of a $5.5 million city fund for individuals who could prove that they were victimized by Burge.173 Burge said he found it hard to believe that Chicago political leadership could “even contemplate giving reparations to human vermin”.174 The fund was approved by the Chicago City Council on May 6, 2015.175

By the way, would you like to know when the mayoral election was?

An election took place on February 24, 2015 to elect the mayor of Chicago. The election was non-partisan and no candidate received a majority. A runoff election was held between the top two finishers (both Democrats) on April 7, 2015, and resulted in the re-election of incumbent mayor Rahm Emanuel.1

So the announcement of this fund came one week after Rahm won re-election. Hmmm.


The issue with the cops is not the only problem Rahm has hanging over him right now.

The teachers just voted to authorize a strike:

CHICAGO — The Chicago Teachers Union has voted overwhelmingly to authorize its leaders to call a strike, a move that clears the way for the union’s second walkout in four years and delivers another pressing political challenge for Mayor Rahm Emanuel.

“Chicago Teachers Union members do not want to strike, but we do demand that you listen to us,” Jesse Sharkey, the vice president of the union, said in a statement Monday addressing Mr. Emanuel and the chief executive of Chicago Public Schools. “Do not cut our schools, do not lay off educators or balance the budget on our backs.”

Teachers voted over three days last week. Union and city officials would have to go through mediation before a strike could take place, and it appeared a walkout would not be possible until at least late spring.

Maybe they’ll push it til summer vacation, so nobody is actually inconvenienced by said strike.

There’s more than that going on. If you go back to that Rahm’s Accomplishments site, you’ll see that there are loads of issues in Chicago, which of course many people ignored as long as things seemed to be ticking along. But it’s not now.

I’ve been trying to figure out who made that site, and this one, and this one, but haven’t found out.

I can understand if they want to remain anonymous. I was just wondering if specific groups, as opposed to an individual, are behind them.

In the meantime, some additional reading: Rahm Emanuel’s catastrophic downfall: Why it should be a much bigger deal for Hillary Clinton.


Compilation of Chicago posts.

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