39 cents on the dollar. The problem for Illinois isn’t rich folks leaving. It is who is being left behind.


There is this thing that happens when you talk to Republican (and some Dems too) politicians. I offer this up to readers who don’t have or don’t seek the opportunity to do that.

They are convinced that the problem with Illinois is that we have an economy and tax structure that threatens to force rich people and corporations to leave the state.

No matter that we have the most regressive tax system imaginable. No matter that we still allow the largest corporations in Illinois to collect and keep the state income tax they collect from employees.

I say to them, “You know who is leaving the state? High school kids because Illinois public colleges and universities are too damn expensive. 40% of Illinois high school graduates who go on to college have to go somewhere else.”

Yes. Props to State Reprsentative Will Guzzardi for introducing a bill to make college tuition free in Illinois.

I got into a discussion with one Republican candidate at yesterday’s Illinois Retired Teachers Association luncheon.  He swore to me that taxes were driving the wealthy out of state.

“Which one of the many homes are they going to?” I asked. “How many is Rauner up to now? Nine is it? Including the one he bought to clout his kid into CPS’ Walter Payton?”

The recent news reports on the improvement in family income shows that the problem in Chicago and Illinois isn’t who is leaving the state, but who in the state is being left behind.

Across the country and in Illinois family income has risen for the first time since the Great Recession,.

The increase in family income does not include African Americans families.

While the median income of white Chicagoans continues to climb, the black median income was more stagnant. That’s created a widening gap between the median incomes of white and black Chicagoans, even as the gap remained steady nationally. Median income for black Chicagoans now equals about 39 cents on the dollar compared to white Chicagoans.

When I pointed this out to some of the Repugs in the room, they looked at me like I was speaking German.

Where, by the way, there is no college tuition.

4 thoughts on “39 cents on the dollar. The problem for Illinois isn’t rich folks leaving. It is who is being left behind.

  1. Fred,
    The folks you call “rich” are really the “uber rich
    ” and for the most part they can mitigate to some degree the impact of higher taxes. They are impacted for sure but not as much as you would like. The folks that are impacted are the so called middle adn upper middle. They don’t have the bucks, unless you are a teacher, but are impacted more than you think. Please propose some reasonable solution to this fiasco that doesn’t have the phrase “tax the rich” in it. You are a broken freakin record.
    As for higher education, now here is a new one for you. This is easy Fred, the damn Fed’s have been messing with the education market for ever and as usual anything they touch goes FUBAR. They have loaned an endless supply of money to kids for college. Even you can figure out what happens when the price goes up and people just keep paying whatever you ask, the price keeps going up. Blame this on en the Feds for supplying the $ and the state for not putting any boundaries on spending.
    By the way how “cheap” are the out of state land grant schools for Ill kids. You might be surprised.
    Basically you are full of crap here Fred. Must be a slow news day, not much to make up to write about.

    Skulking Lurker

  2. I’m breathing a big sigh of relief to find out that the State of Illinois isn’t becoming depopulated, as some of your more conservative fans have suggested. That doesn’t mean that I would miss the wealthy, parasitic grifters in this State if they’d find greener pastures elsewhere. But why would rich people and corporations leave Illinois when it’s such a boondoggle, tax or otherwise, for them?

    How many homes in Lake Forest, Glencoe, or Kenilworth are for sale? Masses of them? How many condos along Lake Shore Drive or in Lincoln Park are on the market? Masses of them? Have the prices of properties in these “high-rent” areas dropped so dramatically due to “wealthy white flight” that even a retired teacher could afford a spectacular lakefront mansion? Actually, Illinois would be a happier place if parasites like Ken Griffin or Bruce Rauner were to depart for some other corner of the globe.

    As usual, people of color bear the greatest burden of income inequality and suffer greater hardships. It’s unfair, distressing, and detrimental to the entire society!!! Will we ever learn that our society will eventually self-destruct if these horrible inequities persist?

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