Wednesday, July 7, 2010


"Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn has handed out raises—some of more than 20 percent—to his staff while proclaiming a message of "shared sacrifice" and planning spending cuts of $1.4 billion because the state is awash in debt.

The Democrat has given 43 salary increases averaging 11.4 percent to 35 staffers in the past 15 months, according to an Associated Press analysis of records obtained under the Freedom of Information Act.

They include a $24,000-a-year bump for the man promoted to shepherd the state through the fiscal storm. Budget Director David Vaught got a 20 percent raise to bring his pay to $144,000 in October when he moved to his new position from Quinn's staff, where he was a senior adviser.

Quinn said Tuesday the raises did not prevent him from making deep spending cuts in his office.

"Overall, the amount of money spent by taxpayers on the governor's office is significantly lower today than it was when I took office," he said at a Chicago news conference planned for him to sign legislation to speed up the processing of evidence in rape cases.

Quinn said he'd cut spending in the office by 25 percent since he took over 17 months ago. But his staff said spending was down 10 percent in the budget year that just ended, with plans for another 25 percent reduction this year.

They did not specify what had been cut."

All the people that are trying to string together part time jobs, side jobs or any kind of any job to offset the loss of wages due to the economic collapse will all sleep a little sounder knowing that at least their elected representative's staffs will weather the storm in comfort.

"Here's another headwind for a sputtering job market: State and local governments plan many more layoffs to close wide budget gaps.

Up to 400,000 workers could lose jobs in the next year as states, counties and cities grapple with lower revenue and less federal funding, says Mark Zandi, chief economist for Moody's"
USA Today

Is it possible that Quinn and all the other elected officials are this tone deaf? Or is it just that they don't care? Do they believe that they hold a special position in this life; princes in an old European style monarchy? That's really where all this is headed, isn't it? Two classes; rulers and serfs. America as an ideal and a reality has ceased to exist. We've crossed over the threshold and slammed the door of freedom closed behind us, all in the name of comfort and security.

Everything is in place now. We are faced with two possibilities. We either go into the night as a failed experiment in individual freedom or we fight. I pray that the fight remains in the realm of ideas and the battles take place in the polls and in the statehouses. I don't hold out much hope for this sort of rational approach, however. Both sides seem to be itchin' for a fight so I suspect a fight will come. Winner take all. And, regardless of who wins, the people will still lose. We've allowed ourselves to be sidelined; pawns in an epic battle for the control of mankind. In the end that's what the coming war will be about. Control, not freedom.

Enjoy these last few days of the American experiment. Short of the return of Christ to this earth, we'll never see anything like it again.

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