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Wednesday, July 6

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R / December 9, 2008 10:09 AM

I think Blago just got his name taken off the Obama's holiday card list. What a moron to be hustling for $$ despite being under investigation, although I have to say that Blago's problem is that he simply got caught. Plenty of IL politicians have pulled stunts like this in in the past.

Spence / December 9, 2008 10:16 AM


eee / December 9, 2008 10:19 AM

This is the best entertainment I've had in a while.

shechemist / December 9, 2008 10:29 AM

Blago couldn't spank the monkey without the feds getting a sperm count and he thought he could make bank off of Obama's former senate seat? He isn't just a criminal, he is delusional. I hope he spends a decade in prison.

Barbara Iverson / December 9, 2008 10:30 AM

This justifies nothing, but may add some perspective to our awful record of corruption in Illinois.
From an Assyrian tablet from 2000 b.c.

"The Earth is degenerating today.
Bribery and corruption abound.
Children no longer obey their parents,
every man wants to write a book, [DON'T BUY BOOKS BY CROOKS, SO IGNORE IT WHEN BLOGO WRITES ONE] and
it is evident that the end of the world is fast approaching."

jima / December 9, 2008 10:39 AM

All of the above, plus this thought:

Maybe John Stroger could run for the governor's seat!

Jill / December 9, 2008 10:39 AM

Shocking. Shocking. A crooked governor in Illinois? Never!

I do like the name "Operation Board Games" though. Makes me want to pull out the Scrabble board.

snuh / December 9, 2008 10:39 AM

I like that the Assyrian's had the foresight to nickname Blagojevich "Blogo".

Gaigen / December 9, 2008 10:45 AM

So when do they nab Patti? Would love to see her in prison garb and not because I hate her (rawr...)

Mucky Fingers / December 9, 2008 11:03 AM

He should have been better at greasy Chicago politics. He was born and raised here, he worked for freakin' Ed Vrdolyak for God's sake!

I'm gonna love seeing Sean Hannity morph "Rod Blagojevich" into "President-elect Obama".

charlie / December 9, 2008 11:23 AM

Blago is fucked...

Nuke LaLoosh / December 9, 2008 11:23 AM

"R" sez: "Plenty of IL politicians have pulled stunts like this in in the past."

That is true, but I've been reading the Criminal Complaint this morning -- and this time it seems like Rod has been much more brazen, more deeply corrupt (trying to get people fired at the Trib?), and ridiculous than any other thing I have seen before -- far worse than George Ryan.

I would say it is Nixonian, but you need to search and replace Nixon's "paranoia" with Blago's "hubris."

Maybe we need a new word for this kind and level of corruption. Too bad Rod's last name defies use as a label -- it would be hard to say it that this level of corruption is "Blagojevichian."

Could we say "Blagonian?"

R / December 9, 2008 11:29 AM

Nuke--Yeah, Blago was naively brash in his actions, but getting someone at the Trib ed board fired or trying to get jobs for you and your wife is nothing compared to illegally giving driver's licenses away--the consequences of Ryan's actions (six dead kids) were greater compared to the money that would have passed hands if Blago's scheme worked. No one died as a result of Blago's actions.

Nuke LaLoosh / December 9, 2008 11:33 AM

R: Good point; I did not mean to overlook the deaths caused by Ryan's reckless greed.

Hey Mucky / December 9, 2008 11:42 AM

Here's your connection...
Blago's biggest supporter was Emil Jones. Emil Jones was Obama's mentor.



Enough with the cynicism already / December 9, 2008 11:58 AM

No one died from Blago's greed--maybe. Keep in mind, he wanted to rescind $8 million in state funding to the Children's Memorial Hospital because one of the execs there wouldn't pony up $50k in donations to Blago's treasure chest.
Blago deserves hard jail time. If ever there was a time to STOP thinking that we're stuck with corrupt politicians—this should be it. Hoping for a new era of true public service, locally, statewide, nationally.

Dutch101 / December 9, 2008 12:00 PM

I am hardly surprised by the allegations, really, but the sheer gall of Blago thinking he could get away with it WHILE CLEARLY AND OPENLY UNDER INVESTIGATION sort of defies logic.
Good riddance I say.

Luke / December 9, 2008 12:01 PM

As an amateur psychologist (I did major in psy, for what that's worth), Blago is f-ed up. Here's the official definition of Antisocial Personality Disorder:

The symptoms of antisocial personality disorder include a longstanding pattern (after the age of 15) of disregard for the rights of others. There is a failure to conform to society's norms and expectations that often results in numerous arrests or legal involvement as well as a history of deceitfulness where the individual attempts to con people or use trickery for personal profit. Impulsiveness if often present, including angry outbursts, failure to consider consequences of behaviors, irritability, and/or physical assaults.

Some argue that a major component of this disorder is the reduced ability to feel empathy for other people. This inability to see the hurts, concerns, and other feelings of people often results in a disregard for these aspects of human interaction. Finally, irresponsible behavior often accompanies this disorder as well as a lack of remorse for wrongdoings.

Jasmine / December 9, 2008 12:01 PM

Haven't decided yet if the Blago/Harris complaint is as good or better than The Starr Report. Partying like it's 1998!

charlie / December 9, 2008 12:04 PM

Fitz made a good point to a reporter.

Not an indictment but a criminal complaint.

GreggF / December 9, 2008 12:11 PM

People, you have got to get past the moral relativism.

No one died because of Blago's corruption?

Ok. Great. So democratic corruption should be considered what? More elegant?

Andrew / December 9, 2008 12:34 PM

Gregg, nobody was suggesting leniency or moral relativism here. I think you skimmed a little too quickly -- read the rest of that comment.

Steven D / December 9, 2008 12:40 PM

I hope they throw the whole book at him. I didn't follow this story very closely over the years, but I heard about the corruption that was taking place. How can these politicians be so damn ballsy and arrogant? Not to mention stupid. In this day and age of constant surveillance and 100% media coverage, to not think you're going to be caught is....just plain dumb.

Let's hope that the next Gov can restore some credibility to this state. Makes me sick to hear that we're the most corrupt state in the union.

Oh and by the way, Mayor Daley: Plow my side streets!! Thanks.

Weary / December 9, 2008 1:46 PM

Why did people elect this lunatic? As someone who voted for Poshard and then Vallas, I feel like I'm reminded constantly of Illinois voters' capacity to let me down and keep electing these pieces of garbage.

Gaigen / December 9, 2008 2:06 PM

Why did people elect this lunatic? As someone who voted for Poshard and then Vallas, I feel like I'm reminded constantly of Illinois voters' capacity to let me down and keep electing these pieces of garbage.

I think it comes with the terriory. Blago wasn't exactly filthy when he was elected the first time, even with the Mell connection. And I think Poshard has his own problems. It's an ugly cycle: you can't get elected in this state without owning somebody and once you're in there, you keep owning them so you figure you'd better start getting your own. At least that's the way I see it. And no, I'm not saying it's right.

As for the corrupt mayor, we haven't had too many significant alternatives.

Ronnie / December 9, 2008 3:34 PM

-- During the call, ROD BLAGOJEVICH’s wife can be heard in the background telling ROD BLAGOJEVICH to tell Deputy Governor A “to hold up that fucking Cubs shit. . . fuck them.”

I'm glad somebody finally said it.

FYI / December 9, 2008 3:38 PM

Blago's 2007 salary as governor was $155,600, FYI. Was he really in a financial crunch? Many families of four survive on far less, what a greedy scum.

Gaigen / December 9, 2008 4:47 PM

Was he really in a financial crunch?

It's called greed. And like Gordon Gekko said, it's good.

Well, until you get caught and carted out of your house wearing black sweatpants...

Carlotta / December 9, 2008 4:56 PM

The Audacity of a Dope.

Stunning in its scope.

Things were already interesting with the Tribune bankruptcy filing, now it'll really heat up with both papers when they start blabbing about their own -- and the other paper's -- entanglement in this mess. Newspaper revenues rise dramatically!

Now, is Mayor Daley a lucky man or what? Privatizes the meters, gets hell for not salting the streets, but what will we be focused on in the next few weeks? Blago et al.

Re Patrick Fitzgerald: The U.S. Attorney's job is his for as long as he wants it. No way in hell will Obama be able to ditch him now. Hope lives that Fitzgerald will get Daley sooner or later.

Here's the fun part / December 9, 2008 6:36 PM

Obama: "I had no contact with the governor or his office and so we were not, I was not aware of what was happening."

Axelrod:"I know he's talked to the governor and there are a whole range of names many of which have surfaced, and I think he has a fondness for a lot of them."

Looks like we are about to confirm that Obama is either an absolute idiot or he is a pathological liar.

... the list goes on and Obama has never known anything

John Boy / December 9, 2008 9:20 PM

This makes me think of Blago as the amateur he is.

Then I look up at the *real* professionals, like Daley and Madigan and smile.

I love Chicago.

vanessa / December 9, 2008 11:51 PM

It's funny to me how all the news media around the country is flabbergasted and then there's us... We're not surprised at all. It's about damn time. Put the asshole in prison.

Oh, and George Ryan should stay in prision too.

*soup* / December 10, 2008 7:17 AM

Blago's arrest was kinda shocking for a few minutes. Not the part about corruption in public office, just the part about being arrested. I hope his family is doing ok.

jennifer / December 10, 2008 10:07 AM

I say, 'thank goodness.' seriously, how stupid do you have to be to try and sell a senate seat when you know that the feds have been crawling around you and your inner circle for the last several years??? and with patrick fitzgerald in think you're going to get anything by that man?

I went to that man's inauguration back in the day. the dems of illinois were so hopeful. he should be blacklisted and get out of the state. judy barr topinka is all over that governorship now.

JJHunsecker / December 10, 2008 10:46 AM

I'm noticing that people in other un-corrupt states like Florida, Georgia, Ohio, and Alaska are having attacks of the vapors. Illinois is so evil. Actually, as we all know from the arts here, Illinois is mainly more theatrical. Rather than a gray Texan blob of corruption, we have a Jeff-award-winning Blago.

Keep in mind that Blago's last run put the Greens on the ballot forever. So there is a silver lining (or a green lining).

I note that the silly Edwin Eisendrath is on Huff Post this morning. Do we want to go from Rod the Magnificent to Edwin the Dilettante?

Finally, and politically incorrectly, why does the Rod hair-do remind me so much of those horrifying Serbian politicians and war criminals? Cultural? Genetic? Same hair gel?

Yes, and Da Mare is next. Maybe the Greens can do him in.

re / December 10, 2008 3:54 PM

Am I the only who thinks Jesse Jackson Jr. is going down in this as well? Looks like he could get charged for accepting a bribe.

jen / December 10, 2008 4:34 PM

JJ -- don't be so sure. Ohio isn't corruption-free. Look at the 2004 election and the secretary of state. Google "Jim Traficant", who has even better hair than Blago and is now in jail. Bob Taft was under investigation at the end there too I believe.

It's just that in Illinois/Chicago, it's at every level of government. Governor, Mayor, police, aldermen, etc. etc. And the nepotism here with the Daleys and the Mells and the Jacksons and the Strogers and the Berrioses....

Gaigen / December 10, 2008 4:41 PM

Am I the only who thinks Jesse Jackson Jr. is going down in this as well? Looks like he could get charged for accepting a bribe.

Did he accept a bribe or offer one? I thought the buzz was he was offering cash to Blah-go for the Senator job.

Janaynay / December 10, 2008 5:04 PM

@Jen: Wow. Now THAT is some hair!

If you had Traficant, Blago, and Phil Specter sharing a cell...just imagine the possibilities!

Shamirum / December 10, 2008 6:59 PM

Ha...what a dumbass.

PS - thanks for the Assyrian shout out! :D

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