Friday, September 15, 2017

Dan Biss: "This is the moment to do it."



     Choosing the Republican belief that has most damaged our country would be a challenge, like picking just one chocolate from a newly opened box of Fannie May, though without the pleasure.
     Would it be the lie that immigrants are bad for the country? The denial of any science that conflicts with corporate interests? Or maybe the notion that law should enforce Christian orthodoxy?
     How to choose? There are so many!
     Myself, I would go for the insistence that government is bad and politicians are bad. The mendacious mantra that gets amateurs like Donald Trump elected: Look, our man is untainted by experience.
     Anti-government cynicism is contagious. After Illinois elected sour multi-millionaire Bruce Rauner as governor, Democrats looked at his dismal record of failure then served up its own pair of I’ve-never-done-this-but-I’d-like-to-try candidates, J.B. Pritzker and Chris Kennedy.
     It’s easy to overlook a candidate hurrying after them, boosted by government experience but handicapped by his lack of a personal fortune: state Sen. Dan Biss. I mentioned him in a column and he phoned.

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22 comments:

  1. mr. Biss seems to have his politospeech on lock. while being able to collaborate sounds great , being able to compromise is what the governor struggles with. as do many politicians here and in Washington . also I'm not sure having savings plans the government administers is a safe bet. moreover as asinine as this may sound mr. Biss is just another member of the same exclusive club. white men. I hope you have a chance to interview or at least mention some of the women running, oh wait , there aren't any, or people of color, oh wait there is one, Ameya Pawar. though he may disqualify himself because of his previous political experience : Chicago alderman

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    1. Sometimes I feel like I have stepped through the political correctness looking glass.

      The world has been, and will continue to be, plagued by unfairness. Dismissing someone because they are part of the exclusive "white men" club doesn't mitigate unfairness, but rather perpetuates it.

      How about we look for the best candidate, rather than someone who fits some arbitrary demographic ideal?

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    2. If we are truly looking for the best candidate then why wouldn't people of color and women be represented in the candidate field? this is not about political correctness this is about changing a system that is dominated by white men and the way to do that is to get out and promote other candidates to give them press interview them and make them known to the electorate. I find your comment troubling and it perpetuates a broken system. This isn't about fairness this is about the people in power keeping power

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    3. Further let me ask if you believe that affirmative action contributes to discrimination? I hear people say this who actually seemed to believe it. mostly white people mostly old men it really makes me ashamed to be an old white man

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    4. Wow.

      I take exception to dismissing a candidate because you pejoratively label him part of the "white men's club" and you imply I am against affirmative action and representation of women and people of color.

      That's quite a presumptive leap. An insulting presumptive leap.

      I've spent my entire adult life working for progressive causes, but unlike you, I am not going to flagellate myself because of my race or gender. I'm not the person who made the world unfair and neither is Mr. Biss. We are both individuals, not representatives of a race, or gender, or ideology. Talk about stereotyping.

      A lot of despots were left handed. Are we going to demonize people in the "left handed club"?

      I like what I see in the mirror. You should try it.

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    5. The solution to bigotry isn't bigotry.

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    6. While the world may be unfair due to some Grand accident it is often the actions of people that make it unfair for certain under represented groups. I attempt to engage in civil discourse and apologize if you feel that this was personalized. I merely asked a question about affirmative action.
      If we all agree that we're going to demonize the group called Chicago Alderman sure why not left-handed people as well if the preponderance of despots have been left handed as you posit. But that's not really what I'm talking about what I'm talking about is how white men have been in controlled in continue to be in control of politics and Commerce in our country and many others and I suggest that we all work hard to change that dynamic. if you feel insulted by this I apologize but as a progressive you should understand my complaint. And not simply dismissed this complaint by saying that I'm too politically correct and that life is unfair

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    7. Let the record show that much human heartache and unfairness have been caused by white males. We have a white male in the presidency with white supremacist tendencies, a man who is an apologist for Nazi wannabes, making this a volatile subject.

      But if we are decent human beings, we should resist painting with a broad brush. I couldn't pick Mr. Biss out of a lineup, and know next to nothing about him. But to dismiss him as a member of the "white men's club" seems to me to perpetuate the very mindset we as progressives hope to mitigate, judging people on the basis of race, creed, or color.

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    8. I didn't intend to judge mr. Biss, my comment was aimed at Neil and his decision to give the guy some ink. as decent human beings we should be aware of our tendency to support people who look like us and make an effort to support the "other "

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    9. "my comment was aimed at Neil and his decision to give the guy some ink" Uh, he's running, FME, and, the way things are going, not being a millionaire almost makes one a minority in big-time politics by itself, anyway... (That's a joke! I'm not really suggesting an equivalence, since these comments seem to be taken so literally.) As little as I care about the Gov race at this juncture, this is the first thing I've read about him, myself. How's Neil supposed to interview a woman candidate when you promptly acknowledged that there are none? And I don't quite understand how you can be a regular reader of EGD and imply that Neil (or Mr. Fisher, for that matter) aren't interested in making "an effort to support the 'other.'"

      Dennis Fisher, I was with you right up until you wrote "I like what I see in the mirror." Uh, that's where we part company. ; )

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    10. I'm sure mr. Steinberg receives many requests for some coverage in his column it's his choice who or what he writes about. I'm suggesting that people be aware that when they have power they often use that power in ways that benefit those already gifted with privilege. If Neil, Mr Fisher and the rest of us are lending our support to the other. We are falling short in our efforts. I'm not trying to denigrate anyone. I'm just offering a reminder that we can help bring awareness of people who might struggle to find resources on their own. What I hope I'm making clear is that I'm speaking to the recent past in our political process as well as the future and Hope that more people become focused on the part they can play in building a system where many different types of people find a seat at the table in the political arena.

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    11. Jakash - Wow. I think my face just got insulted. Tough crowd :)

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    12. It's so easy to misinterpret jokes on the ole internet; I guess I picked the wrong one to be clear about. I *meant* I don't like what *I* see when *I* look in the mirror, Dennis! : )

      It seems pretty evident to me that our host is well aware of the megaphone he has when he puts somebody in his column, FME, but of course we're all falling short in our efforts to support "the other," or none of the branches of government would look the way they do. "...Hope that more people become focused on the part they can play in building a system where many different types of people find a seat at the table in the political arena." Indeed, that's a worthy goal.

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  2. I really was going to support Biss as I liked his ideas, but then he made the disastrous choice of an anti-Semitic Chicago alderman as his running mate, who he then had to dump.
    While picking an anti-Semite is bad enough, just how stupid is he for picking a Chicago alderman as his running mate?
    Other than Eddie Burke, not one of them is known for being smart, they're just known for taking bribes, getting caught by the FBI, then getting convicted & going to federal prison.
    There's no way I'll support Pawar, for the same reason, a Chicago alderman.
    So I'll vote for Chris Kennedy, because at least he a bit of state government experience from being on the board of the U of Illinois.
    Pritzker, is just a fat jerk with a lot of money & zero experience in any kind of politics & will be unable to do anything against the will of Mike Madigan.
    The incompetent current governor is exactly like Pritzker, except for the fat part!

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    1. I have not decided who I will support in the gubernatorial race next year but I am collecting signatures to get mr. Pawar on the primary ballot. he has 3 masters degrees. might be smart. though running for alderman while having aspirations for higher office kinda makes you wonder.

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  3. I was leaning toward Biss but, like Clark St., the events with his choice of running mate give me pause. Both the bad selection (a gay socialist Chicago alderman? Really? Could anything alienate Downstate voters more?) and the worse decision to drop him in what looked like a panic.

    I'm going to take a long, hard look at Ameya Pawar. Unlike Clark, I don't find being a Chicago alderman to be a dealbreaker.

    Of course, no matter which of the four wins the primary, he'll get my vote in the general. I would vote for a neglected compost pile over Rauner.

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    1. Hmm... I've been feeling neglected lately. Maybe I should run. I mean, really, what could go wrong? The worst case scenario would have me as the victor.

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    2. Got lots of money lying around, Tony?

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    3. No, but I'm confident that I can get The Sun-Times to endorse me. They endorsed Rauner last time around, so they obviously can be conned. I've never been elected to public office, just like Rauner. Ah, screw it, I'll just run for president. Maybe I'll kick Illinois out of the Union.

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  4. Why do these guys (all guys, of course, all white guys, of course) want to be governor. It's all too clear why Rauner ran -- he wanted to "make a difference." A difference in his bottom line, a difference in favor of the rich and against the poor, a difference in promoting business at the expense of ordinary folk. A bit like Trump, who may be more obsessed with himself than Rauner, but whose every action, every word, every tweet is aimed at glorifying and enriching himself and those like him. These guys are focused: they don't worry about appeasing the multitudes; they just bedazzle them. They have no rules, no principles, no code of conduct to impede them. It's all me and mine. Theoretically, it should be easy to beat them, but somehow they have been able to beguile a large portion of the electorate whose best interests are imperiled by every action they take and every word they utter. A candidate like Biss should stand out from the crowd of avaricious plutocrats, but it's likely no one will even notice him.

    john

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  5. Looks like Lisa may be running after all...

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