Saturday coffee.

Democrat Illinois House Representative Robyn Gabel. Is she crazy?

We woke to as close to the definition of a Fall day as anyone could claim. A chill in the air. A little rain. Then sun wandering behind scattered gray clouds.

Chicago already knew.

The leaves on the Dogwood in the backyard had given us a rusty warning signal earlier in the week.

Yesterday I had coffee at Peet’s. I sat at the counter, but there was some sticky stuff. Joanne, a Peet’s employee grabbed a wet cloth. I offered to wipe it off.

I laughed because there is an older gentleman who often sits there. He orders coffee but he pulls the rest of his breakfast from a bag. A roll. A little container of jelly. Other assorted stuff. And when he leaves, he leaves a mess. Crumbs and sticky jelly on the counter. He heads out the door and then gets into his high-end Lexus and drives away.

Had he been there already? I jokingly mentioned him to Joanne.

The woman at the other end of the counter pointed out that there were more than a few eccentric customers at Peet’s.

“Eccentric?” I said. “Y’know the difference between someone who is crazy and someone who is eccentric? Poor people are crazy. Rich people are eccentric.”

Joanne and the customer nodded and chuckled. “Nobody ever calls a homeless person “eccentric,” the other customer agreed.

Which leads me to this question.

Were the members of the Illinois House crazy when they voted to put Constitutional Amendment 49 on the ballot in November?

If passed by the voters it would require that any local collectively bargained agreement be approved by a 3/5th majority of the governing board if those agreements have incentives or additional compensation increases beyond salary.

So, let’s take the Collective Bargaining Agreement that will be voted on by the Park Ridge board of education on Monday evening.

There are seven members on the board. Monday will require four of them to vote yes for approval. The union has already approved it.

If Constitutional Amendment 49 passes, it will require five board members to vote for it, since the contract contains some non-salary financial incentives.

This is a recipe for an Illinois strike epidemic, since agreements will be more difficult to reach.

And it is a first step towards public employee union anti-strike legislation. I’m guessing that is Mike Madigan’s ultimate objective.

That’s why I’m asking someone like Democratic State Representative Robyn Gabel who represents a district on the north side and in the north Chicago suburbs and voted for Constitutional Amendment 49 to be on the ballot:  Are you crazy? Or Eccentric?

Having voted for this, you certainly can’t claim that you are sane.

5 Replies to “Saturday coffee.”

  1. House Joint Resolution Constitutional Amendment 49 Will Diminish Public Pensions

    …Public employees know they are victims of a tyranny by the few who lack accountability for destroying a representative democracy and a just economy in Illinois; public employees know they are victims of the corporate “We Mean Business” PAC and vast resources of money and influence committed to reforming the rules and policies that have and will continue to adversely affect the lives of middle-class citizens and the disenfranchised; moreover, most public employees know about the schemes to reallocate the state’s future liabilities to teachers and school districts and universities by way of procuring policymakers and about the attempt to circumvent Article XIII, Section 5 of the Illinois Constitution through House Joint Resolution Constitutional Amendment 49.

    There is a simple synergetic balance to understand here. If the state’s policymakers impair the Pension Clause of its public employees, they will not only destroy the public employees’ financial security and their integrity, but they will also damage the communities that these people support, serve and protect.

    For more information:

  2. Actually 100% of the House and Senate voted to put this amendment on the ballot. Is it advisory or binding? Is there a plan to unite the unions in the state to vote against this? I do not believe the word is out about how damaging this could be.

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