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Hypocrisy defined

Thursday, Sep 27, 2007

* These guys are so blatantly hypocritical sometimes…

The Blagojevich administration’s efforts to promote a capital spending bill came to Springfield Wednesday, touted as a way to build a $10 million simulated hospital at the Southern Illinois University School of Medicine. […]

In Springfield on Wednesday, labor leaders, educators and others touted the simulated hospital that would give physicians training in situations they will encounter in emergency rooms, operating rooms, intensive care, obstetrics and other areas before dealing with patients.

* Why the hypocrisy? Check out what’s buried way down in that SJ-R story…

Michael Boer, chairman of the commission that oversees Springfield’s medical district, also attended Wednesday’s event, even though Blagojevich cut $350,000 from the state budget that would have allowed the district to hire full-time staffers.

“Because we don’t have staff doesn’t mean we aren’t concerned with accomplishing the purposes we were created for,” he said. “The most important one is creating health-care-related economic development in the (district).”

[Emphasis added.]

* Speaking of hypocrisy, the Daily Herald looks at the governor’s flip-flops on gaming…

When Gov. Rod Blagojevich backed a casinos-for-construction deal last week, it marked the second time in recent months he’d reneged on a campaign promise to oppose gambling expansion.

He first broke that promise in May when he offered his support for a Senate casino deal that would have funded the governor’s coveted health care expansion. At the time, Blagojevich said he wasn’t thrilled with more casinos, but he’d make the sacrifice if it meant health coverage for needy families.

“Without health care, I’m not going to accept any new gaming proposals,” Blagojevich said in late May.

That plan never came to fruition.

Now, he’s backing the biggest gambling expansion since the state first legalized riverboat gambling even though it has nothing to do with health care.

* While we’re on the topic of gaming, last fall the governor’s budget honcho John Filan wrote a guest piece for this blog trashing Judy Baar Topinka’s gaming plan, which was smaller than the governor’s plan now on the table…

When you increase the gaming opportunities in the State as much as Topinka has suggested, these opportunities begin to become counterproductive. That is, casinos are luring the same dollars statewide, and these dollars will begin to be split among facilities, rather than moved from other facilities. Some market share will be taken from Indiana and Wisconsin casinos, and as a result, we estimate based on studies by Deloitte Consulting, LLC and the Illinois Department of Revenue that about $600-700 million annually may be obtained from recurring revenues, about half the $1.25 billion annually that Topinka predicts. There is absolutely no empirical support for an additional $1.25 billion in revenue per year.

* And despite all the talk of a massive infusion of immediate cash from the governor’s proposal, Filan had this to say about the timeline of getting a Chicago casino built and operating…

As most of us know and as suggested in the discussion about capital above, it takes time to build additional space, we estimate very aggressively no less than 9 months for existing casinos and 18 months for the Chicago casino. This means that the full value of the gaming expansion won’t be available until 2010 or 2011- at the earliest. And this doesn’t even take into account the amount of time the 10th license will remain in limbo.

* More budget stuff, compiled by Paul…

* Deeper CTA cuts in ‘08 officials warn

* Illinois gaming industry lobbies for Internet gaming

* Governor sees support for casinos, Madigan wary

* State plans for casinos runs into trouble

* State leaders talking, but no progress seen

* Senate deal may make winner out of Watson

* Leaders tout capital spending plan

* Leaders push capital budget

* CPR: Blago and legislative leaders meet to resolve disagreements

* Push for health-care expansion continues

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - ssssuper - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 10:20 am:

    If I remember correctly, wasn’t Filan just trashing the revenue estimates in Topinka’s proposal?

    Or was he trashing the whole concept?

  2. - Greg - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 10:53 am:

    Well…maybe they are just growing in office. :)

  3. - fedup dem - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 11:32 am:

    Sometimes, Rich???

  4. - GA Watcher - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 11:49 am:

    Greg: If anything is growing, it’s their noses.

  5. - Little Egypt - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 12:45 pm:

    I hope someone is keeping track of the flip-flops.

  6. - A. Guy - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 12:51 pm:

    Lies upon more lies from this governor. He didn’t have the guts to show up at the Springfield event, knowing he’d get rightfully raked over his treatment of the medical district issue. He doesn’t seem to be showing up at any of these events, sending surrogates instead. There’s commitment for you. If you believe any of those vetoed funds will be released to places like Rochester, I have a lovely condominium on lake 2 or Keyesport to sell you.

    As a union person, I have to say I was very disturbed by the union trades rep saying they don’t care where the money comes from, as long as it is thrown at capital projects. Unions have been trying to distance themselves from associations to mob ties forever, and now to endorse massive gambling expansion, which also is associated with the Outfit, and hand-wave it away with an “ends justify the means” answer… well, that’s not the socially responsible attitude I want in MY union. Smells like bribes for jobs.

    The governor likes to throw around extravagant estimates of how many jobs ( “good-paying jobs!” ) his initiatives generate. These estimates are always exaggerated. They assume for instance that the number of workers that come to build a project arrive en masse and then stay in the region forever. They don’t. They are mostly itinerants, often out of staters, travelling from site to site and leaviing as soon as their little parts fo the whole are done. While they might drop some salary on local hotel stays and food during the construction, the bulk of their money goes home, wherever that is… and usually that’s not anywhere near the job site. But keep on throwing impressive numbers of workers around, even if they are aggregated groups of ten or twenty, re-counted as new additions every couple weeks as a new phase starts. Who’s going to go look up the details, right?

  7. - Anon - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 1:18 pm:

    What is sad is how much this term is shaping up in line with Topinka’s proposals, not Blago’s campaign rhetoric and pie-in the sky promises.

    While Topinka had flaws a-plenty, I cannot conceive of this egotistical standoff occurring on her watch. She would have been practical, and cut a reasonable deal with Madigan to get the budget moving, which is what responsible political leaders do. We would be far beyond our budget crisis, and moving forward.

  8. - Cassandra - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 1:19 pm:

    Since the Illinois Repub party is pretty much defunct, one wonders who, exactly, Watson represents. His district, I guess. But it’s a bit much to think of him as representing a viable Republican state constituency. The Dems just pretend he does, for convenience.

    Makes it easier for Blago…all he has to do is make sure Watson’s constituency gets enough of our taxpayer dollars and Bob’s your uncle. Watson’ll do whatever Blago wants.

    We really are living in a one-party state. The occasional eruption from a pol like Watson or Cross doesn’t mean a thing. They’re political independent contractors.

  9. - jake - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 1:30 pm:

    Just call me a cynic but…..How much of the Governor’s turnaround on gambling comes from realizing how much campaign money can be squeezed out of people competing for gambling licenses and casino construction contracts?

  10. - jake - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 1:33 pm:

    PS to last—I meant to say also, add people competing for contracts on the capital projects. Capital projects supported by gambling equals maximum campaign dollars extortion possibilities.

  11. - MOON - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 2:57 pm:

    I continue to hear and read comments that put the blame on both Madigan and/or Blago for the current fiasco. My question is , would this fiasco have happened it Topinka,Ryan, Edgar or Thompson were governor, while Madigan was the speaker? Having asked that, if the answer is no than one must look to Blago as the cause of all this. Madigan has a history which shows his ability to compromise with former governors. What is Blago’s record when it comes to compromising?

  12. - anonymous - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 3:47 pm:

    There is also a great of hypocrisy being flouted by those top dog adminstrators who have lost programmatic/personnel funding through gubenatorial vetoes, yet will stand tall during press conferences so their place in line at the capital funding booth is not lost. How much are they fighting to get back the funding for their projects that were expunged, yet holding out their hands for bricks and mortar that mean nothing without the staff to work in them? Grin and bare it, ladies and gentlemen.

  13. - Mr. W.T. Rush - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 5:15 pm:

    Most think VandaliaFrank thinks he will win by flunging the gambling bill to the House, watching Sock Puppet sweat and hope Madigan does not call.
    Then he can do one his “there ya go, the Dems can’t get anything done.”
    That makes sense until the tinfoil helmets start ripping him a new )*&_&_)& hole for expanding gambling.
    Where’s Eric Krol when we need him?

  14. - Arthur Andersen - Thursday, Sep 27, 07 @ 5:23 pm:

    I’m just wondering why we would spend $10 million on a pretend hospital when we have plenty of real hospitals that could use that dough.

    When I read the J-R and saw that, combined with Cecil Turner geeting popped from the slammer and Courtney Cox being named US Attorney, I was convinced it was an early April Fool edition.

Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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