By Marta Mossburg
The Hendricks County Flyer
Tue Jun 04, 2013, 03:04 PM EDT
For those looking for insight on the scandals engulfing the Obama administration, read “Boss,” Mike Royko’s classic 1971 biography of former Chicago Mayor Richard J. Daley.
The IRS targeting of conservative groups and the Department of Justice criminalizing reporting will make more sense after understanding how the infamous Chicago Machine, the one that birthed President Barack Obama, worked.
It’s the one where honest police “were distinguished by their rank, which was seldom above patrolman.” It’s the one where millionaires were allowed to “contribute to the party, serve on advisory boards, take on time-consuming appointments, and help elect Machine Democrats to office.”
And it’s the one where everyone knew their role without being told. In order to be elected, one had to make it through the system, “beginning as doorbell ringers, working in the jobs their sponsors got for them, pushing the ward book, buying the tickets, doing the favors, holding the coats, opening the doors, putting in the fix …”
Obama did not rise through the Machine like Daley or his son Richard, Mayor of Chicago from 1989 to 2011. He adopted it, by moving to Chicago for good after Harvard Law School.
As he told the Hyde Park Herald in 1995, “I came home in Chicago… I began to see my identity and my individual struggles were one with the struggles that folks face in Chicago.”
The man who had never been a ward committeeman or moved up the patronage job ladder originally saw himself as above its parochial maneuverings. But he learned the hard way after U.S. Rep. Bobby Rush decimated him in a 2000 primary that he would get nowhere as the proverbial “nobody nobody sent.”
So he embraced it, ingratiating himself with the proper pastors, politicians, and now-Commerce Secretary nominee Penny Pritzker, the billionaire whose family founded Hyatt Hotels and who raised millions for him. And life was good. He moved from Illinois state senator to U.S. Senator under their tutelage.
March 3, 2014
February 27, 2014
February 26, 2014
There was a wide array of reactions to Seattle DB Richard Sherman’s post-game “interview” with Erin Andrews following the Seahawks’ NFC title win over San Francisco.
Mine? Laughter, as the shout-down was the most entertaining thing I saw all day.
January 28, 2014
Butler is still a long way from saving its 2013-14 men’s basketball season, but if the Bulldogs turn it around fully and reach the NCAA Tournament, it will have started this past Saturday at Hinkle Fieldhouse.
January 21, 2014
A fine season for the Indianapolis Colts ended with a whimper Saturday at New England, but in recent team history, it was far from the most disappointing postseason defeat.
January 14, 2014
The Indianapolis Colts’ miraculous 45-44 wild card victory over Kansas City on Saturday ended just after 8 p.m. After leaving Lucas Oil Stadium, it took until around midnight for the pounding in my head to subside.
January 7, 2014
December 31, 2013
An NPR broadcast examines the question of how communities can better prepare for tornadoes like the one that struck Moore, Okla. on Monday. The broadcast features commentary from Michael Fitzgerald, who reported a five-part disaster series for the CNHI News Service.
May 22, 2013
Part I: Are We Prepared? | Part II: Disaster Dollars Part III: Lessons Learned | Part IV: Warning Signs Part V: The Big One
Smartphones need kill switches. It's a relatively easy solution to the pricey (and irritating) problem of smartphone theft. But who would have thought that the big carriers would team up with Apple, Google, Microsoft, Nokia, Samsung and lots of other manufacturers to voluntarily begin adding the technology by July 2015? The cooperative spirit! It makes so much sense!
April 18, 2014
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