Courier News Latest news from Courier News Online en-us (Editor) Courier News 84 34 30 Copyright 2014 <![CDATA[ State transportation funding boost needed for infrastructure ]]>

State transportation funding boost needed for infrastructure What drives the economy in Illinois? A better question is: What makes sure our economy can move forward every day? The answer is a strong infrastructure that includes roads, bridges, transit options and accompanying utilities. The 2014 American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) report card grade on Illinois infrastructure is at an overall C- ( Roads, transit and sewers received a D+. It is time to pay closer attention to what is needed to keep our infrastructure strong. The Transportation for Illinois Coalition (TFIC) knows what is at stake here. TFIC recently released … ]]> Mon, 21 Apr 2014 02:26:35 -0500 <![CDATA[ Being driven nuts by Rauners’ television commercial ]]>

Being driven nuts by Rauners’ television commercial Bruce Rauner, Republican candidate for governor, and his wife Diana seem to have a very difficult time with the truth. In a TV spot, the Rauners explain that they don’t agree on everything, including politics. When Diana Rauner explains that she’s a Democrat, Bruce emphasizes that he loves her regardless of her political affiliation. And yet it appears that Diana Rauner’s political contributions don’t match up with her stated party affiliation. She gave 77 percent of the more than $500,000 she’s given since 1995 to Republican candidates and causes. Ninety-one percent of her … ]]> Fri, 18 Apr 2014 02:38:57 -0500 <![CDATA[ Kane should view medical marijuana as revenue prospect ]]>

Kane should view medical marijuana as revenue prospect If you look at Kane County’s five-year financial plan (at one thing is certain: The county is banking on state sales tax and income tax going up 2 percent every year. Even with this positive outlook on our state’s economic health, the county will still end up with a deficit of almost a million dollars by 2018. The county needs to think of ways to “enhance revenue” and continue to serve its residents. If I were on the county board, I would suggest we approach the 22 licensees that will be … ]]> Thu, 17 Apr 2014 02:35:33 -0500 <![CDATA[ Interventionists still have not learned the lessons of history ]]>

Interventionists still have not learned the lessons of history If President Obama listened to John McCain and the other Republican hawks, we’d already be involved militarily in Libya, Syria and Iran. Now, McCain wants us to get entangled in the Ukraine on the Russian doorstep. He wants to send arms and provide intelligence. Next, he’ll want U.S. air support and, then, advisers. Before long, we’ll be on the ground in another quagmire like Vietnam or Iraq. Don’t the conservative GOP interventionists ever learn the lessons of history? What did supporting Nixon, Bush, Rumsfeld and Cheney do for us except waste … ]]> Wed, 16 Apr 2014 02:36:40 -0500 <![CDATA[ Not much info in Medicare ‘data dump’ ]]>

Not much info in Medicare ‘data dump’ Much has been made of the Medicare physician payment “data dump” that occurred on April 9. Pursuit of transparency by America’s single largest purchaser of health care is laudable, but the way this information is being presented lacks some important elements of context. I’d like to share a bit about what this material really means. If you look up my name in this new database, you’ll see the amount of reimbursements associated with my “national provider identification” number — the technical ID number I’ve been assigned in order to submit a claim after … ]]> Tue, 15 Apr 2014 02:34:15 -0500 <![CDATA[ Sebelius a hero for leading charge for health care reform ]]>

Sebelius a hero for leading charge for health care reform My favorite hero growing up was the soldier who led the charge against the machine gun nest. This patriot of patriots was invariably mortally or grievously wounded. He knew his fate before taking the first step but was devoted to a cause bigger than himself. To me, Kathleen Sebelius is such a hero. She took on a mission larger than herself. She knew that she would be ridiculed and reviled publicly and relentlessly by those with a financial stake in the existing health care system. She knew she would face … ]]> Mon, 14 Apr 2014 02:28:01 -0500 <![CDATA[ Guns — even among military personnel — are never the answer ]]>

Guns — even among military personnel — are never the answer I’m writing in response to a letter Tuesday by Manfred W. Czymmek, “Gun free-zones are not safe, and the latest tragedy shows why.” Czymmek feels that arming people is the answer to gun violence, and he uses the latest shooting at Fort Hood as his evidence of this stinkin’ thinkin’. Anyone who has been in the military knows that the military does not allow guns in the hands of soldiers, seamen, Marines or airmen while they are not in combat. Those of us who came of age during the … ]]> Fri, 11 Apr 2014 02:36:44 -0500 <![CDATA[ Supreme Court, you’re fired! ]]>

Supreme Court, you’re fired! The U.S. Supreme Court’s disastrous decision on Citizens United in 2010 and now McCutcheon v FEC on April 2 will make the lives of the Koch brothers and Sheldon Adelson easier and more profitable, while the lives of the rest of society will be squelched — in the voting booth, in Congress and in statehouses all over the country. In the 2012 elections, the Kochs gave $407 million and Adelson gave $98 million, and both will double down for the 2016 elections. The Kochs are now giving big money to school boards and county boards to … ]]> Thu, 10 Apr 2014 02:28:54 -0500 <![CDATA[ Gun free-zones not safe; latest tragedy shows why ]]>

Gun free-zones are not safe, and the latest tragedy shows why Another “gun free zone” was the scene of the latest tragedy. The latest count was three dead and 16 injured. Could this tragedy have been prevented? Probably not. One never knows how a disturbed mind works. But even a disturbed mind knows a gun-free zone allows them to carry out their carnage with no initial resistance. But could the damage have been mitigated? Of course. But the whiney far-left secular progressives want to take away guns from its citizens, much the same way previous dictators did. And how did … ]]> Tue, 08 Apr 2014 02:24:24 -0500 <![CDATA[ Support keeping school bus service at same, safe levels ]]>

Support keeping school bus service at same, safe levels The Illinois General Assembly is considering legislation that will put thousands of school children at risk, increase traffic congestion and harm the environment. House Bill 5967 would radically alter the formula that guarantees yellow bus service for all students living at least 1½ miles from school. Under HB 5967, the minimum distance would increase to two miles, adding 172 square blocks — or 43 percent — to each school’s exclusion zone. This “small” change would virtually end bus service at many schools and force tens of thousands of students to find … ]]> Mon, 07 Apr 2014 02:25:49 -0500 <![CDATA[ Poor choices for Judson’s Leadership Forum ]]>

Poor Judson choices for Leadership Forum Has Judson University departed from its Christian mission of peace in the choice of leaders honored in its Leadership Forum: George W. Bush and Condoleezza Rice? These two were instrumental in lying us into the needless, catastrophic Iraq war that killed and maimed many of our troops, divided our country, and wasted a trillion dollars. Why does a religious school have a penchant to feature as admirable leaders, some whose conduct in the matter of the Iraq war borders on breach of the public trust or malfeasance? Judson should not condone such behavior, and … ]]> Fri, 04 Apr 2014 02:33:46 -0500 <![CDATA[ Elgin must protect, not cut, what makes it great ]]>

Elgin must protect, not cut, what makes the city great I feel the need to respond to Margaret Miller’s letter of March 17. She throws around words like “elite” and “liberal” as if they were curse words. According to, elite means “the choice or best of anything considered collectively.” Liberal means “favorable to progress or reform.” I would think everyone would like to be described in such glowing terms. Miller’s prescription for Elgin is demand “spending cuts.” She wants an Elgin that is utterly void of anything pleasant, restorative, educational or enriching. She wants to refuse state and federal … ]]> Wed, 02 Apr 2014 02:32:35 -0500 <![CDATA[ Republicans oppose any benefits to poor and working class ]]>

Republicans oppose any benefits to poor and working class When we talk about Obamacare being a bad law, we must stop and think about how good the medical laws are working in foreign countries. England and European countries have done very well with their medical laws for many years — with no talk of abolishing them — run by the government. The Republican Party that takes in the tea party and better known as the White Rich Man’s Party has always opposed everything that benefits the poor and working class. They always wanted to raise taxes on the middle class … ]]> Mon, 24 Mar 2014 02:24:11 -0500 <![CDATA[ Officials show leadership on immigration reform ]]>

Immigration reform leadership shown As I experienced as chairman of the DuPage County Board, being a leader often means making hard short-term, unpopular decisions for the long-term public good. This is especially true in politics, where elected officials are dependent on voters to keep their jobs and thus sometimes shrink from making the tough choices they know are best for their constituencies. That is why I was particularly pleased to hear about the Chicago Council on Global Affairs’ bipartisan discussion featuring Republicans Adam Kinzinger, Mark Kirk and Democrats Luis Gutierrez and Rahm Emanuel. These officials showed their leadership by publicly … ]]> Tue, 22 Apr 2014 06:25:14 -0500 <![CDATA[ Elgin Math & Science Academy Charter School proposal ]]>

Elgin Math & Science Academy Charter School proposal I am writing on behalf of the Elgin Math and Science Academy Charter School (EMSA) design team, and I would like to share some information from our charter proposal. EMSA will be a free, public school, open to all U46 students, and there will be no entrance requirements. It will serve grades K-8 on one campus, have a longer school day and school year. EMSA will also offer all-day kindergarten. EMSA will follow an exciting Expeditionary Learning-based curriculum with a focus on science, technology, engineering and math (STEM). The learning environment will … ]]> Mon, 21 Apr 2014 18:51:42 -0500