More members of Illinois’ congressional delegation have weighed in on the possible commutation of George Ryan’s prison sentence. All are in the No category:
* Jesse Jackson, Jr. (Democrat)
* Judy Biggert (Republican)
* Debbie Halvorson (incoming Democrat)
Democrats Bobby Rush and Dan Lipinski didn’t return phone calls to the SouthtownStar, the paper reports.
“As if it hadn’t yet, we can now firmly say Obama merchandise has jumped the shark. Or something like that . . . “
So Luis Gutierrez’s pitch to Rod Blagojevich to replace Barack Obama in the Senate was that he only wanted to serve as a place-holder for the next two years in order to work on immigration reform. Then he’d be out.
Um . . . huh?
Let’s do some good ol’ fashion speculatin’.
1. Face value is reality. Nah.
2. Face value is partially reality. Gutierrez wants two years in the Senate not only to work on immigration reform, but to raise his profile for his next move: mayor, governor, who knows.
3. Gutierrez thinks his wife will be able to make even more lucrative real estate deals on the side if he’s a senator instead of just a rep.
4. Gutierrez mistakenly believes that Obama’s Hyde Park mansion comes with the seat.
5. Gutierrez mistakenly believed that Blagojevich preferred a place-holder; his real intention was to run for re-election to the Senate in 2010 because the people would demand it.
Richard Roeper thinks it’s “ridiculous” that the school board in Hempstead, New York, has voted unanimously to change the name of Ludlum Elementary School to Obama Elementary.
Eriz Zorn disagrees. “Normally I’m an advocate for the Hall of Fame rule – that we wait five years after a famous person retires, leaves office or dies before naming anything after him. But this is not a normal situation. Obama has already, inarguably, become one of the most famous, important Chicagoans of all time.”
But enough about us. What do the folks in New York think?
I’m glad Rick Morrissey said it first last Friday in the Tribune so it wouldn’t seem like just another attack on Barack Obama. Because Obama is wrong: We do not need a college football playoff system. In fact, we should roll back the BCS and just go back to the old-fashioned and glorious bowls before they were bastardized beyond recognition. Let’s go back to the future. Here’s why.
1. The fact that college football is pretty much the only athletic endeavor of its kind that doesn’t crown a champion after a playoff is a quaint and unique characteristic of the sport that should be cherished. It’s a big part of what makes college football popular – the weekly debate about the polls and end-of-season debate about who is really No. 1. Must we homogenize everything? We tried that with baseball stadiums in the 70s and found that ballparks like Fenway and Wrigley endure because, for whatever odd reasons, they came to be shaped certain ways. The same with college football. The lack of a playoff system is one of the great hallmarks of the college game. Are we really less well off as a civilization because we don’t crown an official champion (BCS notwithstanding)? Is this really an injustice?