IllinoisTimes - Guest Opinion http://illinoistimes.com/articles.sec-33-1-guest-opinion.html Fri, 15 Dec 17 00:00:00 -0600 en hourly 1 Where to cut the city budget - Spending for police and fire is out of control http://illinoistimes.com/article-19461-where-to-cut-the-city-budget.html Where to cut the city budget - Spending for police and fire is out of control
The city of Springfield’s pending financial disaster is much more a problem of priorities, and less a problem of revenue. Informal comments already suggest that there is nothing left to cut, but the...]]>
Charlottesville and common-sense gun solutions http://illinoistimes.com/article-19433-charlottesville-and-common-sense-gun-solutions.html Charlottesville and common-sense gun solutions
 My son points the stick like he’s just back from the shooting range. “Pow,” he says, a mischievous glint in his eye. He already knows the family policy his older brother rattles off ambiva...]]>
Is Springfield welcoming? Why doctors need to know http://illinoistimes.com/article-19412-is-springfield-welcoming-why-doctors-need-to-know.html Is Springfield welcoming? Why doctors need to know
A few years ago I read an article indicating that health care was rivaling state government as the largest employment area in Springfield. It didn’t surprise me. Since the founding of the Southern I...]]>
A solution to the demise of cursive http://illinoistimes.com/article-19377-a-solution-to-the-demise-of-cursive.html A solution to the demise of cursive
 In case you hadn’t noticed, the world has changed. That, according to Darren J. Root, superintendent of the Auburn public schools, in a recent op-ed for the SJ-R. Superintendent Root noted tha...]]>
Why we need to worry about federal debt http://illinoistimes.com/article-19361-why-we-need-to-worry-about-federal-debt.html Why we need to worry about federal debt
As Republicans in Congress move forward on their tax plan, it’s worth remembering one thing: whatever the legislative particulars, keep your eye on the plan’s impact on the federal debt. Our debt...]]>
If you want to change things http://illinoistimes.com/article-19329-if-you-want-to-change-things.html If you want to change things
 One of the gifts of living in a representative democracy is that voting is only one of the rights it confers. For ordinary people who want to make change – who in some way want to alter their...]]>
Springfield needs action on economy - Politics often gets in the way http://illinoistimes.com/article-19296-springfield-needs-action-on-economy.html Springfield needs action on economy - Politics often gets in the way
 I have some experience with economic development efforts in Springfield. This backstory lends credence to my cynicism about why the new economic development corporation, formed in response to th...]]>
What went wrong in Vietnam? - A diplomat, who served in Saigon 50 years ago, asks, ‘Have we learned any lessons?’ http://illinoistimes.com/article-19263-what-went-wrong-in-vietnam.html What went wrong in Vietnam? - A diplomat, who served in Saigon 50 years ago, asks, ‘Have we learned any lessons?’
 The opening statement in the Burns-Novick TV documentary series is accurate. The U.S. was overconfident, its policy was based on a fateful misunderstanding of the Vietnam conflict and the U.S. f...]]>
Aldermen and big money http://illinoistimes.com/article-19233-aldermen-and-big-money.html Aldermen and big money
 When Springfield City Council members repeatedly accept large campaign contributions from the same serial donors year after year, they invariably compromise their impartiality and subordinate th...]]>
Ovarian cancer awareness grows http://illinoistimes.com/article-19213-ovarian-cancer-awareness-grows.html Ovarian cancer awareness grows
The Abraham Lincoln Presidential Museum was lit up in teal last month in honor of National Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month. The month was dedicated to raising awareness about ovarian cancer and honorin...]]>
Police don’t have to shoot so much http://illinoistimes.com/article-19189-police-don%25E2%2580%2599t-have-to-shoot-so-much.html Police don’t have to shoot so much
 For the last year I have been disheartened by the steady stream of police shootings that have been witnessed where there seems to be minimal provocation.For example, on Sept. 4 a man in South Ca...]]>
A bigger Sinclair is bad for TV and bad for democracy http://illinoistimes.com/article-19150-a-bigger-sinclair-is-bad-for-tv-and-bad-for-democracy.html A bigger Sinclair is bad for TV and bad for democracy
 In May, the Sinclair Broadcast Group – one of the largest owners of TV stations in the country and owner of WICS-TV in Springfield – announced plans to spend $3.9 billion to acquire Tribune...]]>
Hurricanes blow in hypocrisy http://illinoistimes.com/article-19128-hurricanes-blow-in-hypocrisy.html Hurricanes blow in hypocrisy
At hurricane force even this White House can see which way the wind blows. So of course Washington cobbled debt-ceiling relief with disaster relief.Every Democrat in Congress saw the needs and voted a...]]>
Editor’s note 9/7/17 http://illinoistimes.com/article-19091-editor%25E2%2580%2599s-note-9_7_17.html Editor’s note 9/7/17
Once again Springfield’s U. S. senator, Richard Durbin, is in the national spotlight for being ahead of his time. Before there was DACA – Deferred Action on Childhood Arrivals – there was Durbin...]]>
Coal critical to power future in Illinois http://illinoistimes.com/article-19093-coal-critical-to-power-future-in-illinois.html Coal critical to power future in Illinois
 Electricity is easy to take for granted. But imagine the disruption to our lives if we could not charge our iPhones that connect us to the rest of the world or flip a light switch with the guara...]]>
Going down to the crossroads - Encountering the homeless, wanting to help http://illinoistimes.com/article-19076-going-down-to-the-crossroads.html Going down to the crossroads - Encountering the homeless, wanting to help
 This past Saturday morning I encountered four homeless men in a matter of moments. The first slept like a tossed baggie of water on the stoop near the entrance to my building. A few minutes late...]]>
Narcissism and gullibility - In the wake of Charlottesville, concern about true believers http://illinoistimes.com/article-19049-narcissism-and-gullibility.html Narcissism and gullibility - In the wake of Charlottesville, concern about true believers
 Before the election of Donald Trump I warned voters of the perils of narcissism among political leaders. I concluded with the following sentence: “Sadly, gullible individuals are especially vu...]]>
Working with nine presidents before this one http://illinoistimes.com/article-19006-working-with-nine-presidents-before-this-one.html Working with nine presidents before this one
 One reason I consider myself fortunate to have led a life in politics is that, over time, I’ve had a chance to work with nine presidents. From Lyndon Johnson through Barack Obama, I’ve talke...]]>
Fear and loathing in health care - When politicians target our primitive brain http://illinoistimes.com/article-18989-fear-and-loathing-in-health-care.html Fear and loathing in health care - When politicians target our primitive brain
Why do voters support politicians whose clear policy goals indicate that they are likely to support measures that will adversely impact the very people who voted for them?For example, the various iter...]]>
The U.S. and North Korea: Give peace a chance http://illinoistimes.com/article-18958-the-us-and-north-korea-give-peace-a-chance.html The U.S. and North Korea: Give peace a chance
 Sooner or later, every rookie reporter must face the ugly facts: Somewhere, sometime, there will be a school board meeting she will have to cover. A veteran opinion monger like me faces a simila...]]>
“We speak to you, not about you” - An immigrant’s billboard about not gossiping http://illinoistimes.com/article-18935-%25E2%2580%259Cwe-speak-to-you-not-about-you%25E2%2580%259D.html “We speak to you, not about you” - An immigrant’s billboard about not gossiping
 I established my Springfield salon, Gulden’s Nail Spa, in 2012. I was born and raised in Adana, Turkey, and moved to the United States at the age of 21. It has always been my dream to own my o...]]>
A billboard about language and intolerance http://illinoistimes.com/article-18911-a-billboard-about-language-and-intolerance.html A billboard about language and intolerance
 America is a nation composed of immigrants, the fairly recent descendants of immigrants, native peoples and the descendants of slaves. Unlike regions of the world where majorities may descend fr...]]>
Patients will die if Congress doesn’t act http://illinoistimes.com/article-18891-patients-will-die-if-congress-doesn%25E2%2580%2599t-act.html Patients will die if Congress doesn’t act
Thousands of Americans could die waiting for the Food and Drug Administration to approve new, lifesaving treatments if Congress fails to reauthorize a 25-year-old law this summer.The legislation, the...]]>
Sanders supporters plan future of progressive movement - Can Democrats and independents form a majority coalition? http://illinoistimes.com/article-18864-sanders-supporters-plan-future-of-progressive-movement.html Sanders supporters plan future of progressive movement - Can Democrats and independents form a majority coalition?
 Earlier this month I attended the 2017 People’s Summit in Chicago along with several thousand other progressive activists. The event was sponsored by a “who’s who” of left-leaning Democr...]]>
Trump’s support for apprenticeships falls short http://illinoistimes.com/article-18840-trump%25E2%2580%2599s-support-for-apprenticeships-falls-short.html Trump’s support for apprenticeships falls short
For some, the recent unveiling of President Trump’s Executive Order (EO) pledging to expand apprenticeships nationwide – programs that allow workers to “earn and learn” on the job – was a we...]]>
How to fix Obamacare http://illinoistimes.com/article-18817-how-to-fix-obamacare.html How to fix Obamacare
I am in agreement with President Donald Trump on at least one thing. He is quoted as telling Republican senators that the House’s American Health Care Act (AHCA) was “mean” and whatever Senate R...]]>
Municipal bands, a summer favorite http://illinoistimes.com/article-18791-municipal-bands-a-summer-favorite.html Municipal bands, a summer favorite
 Times may change, but some things stay the same. Fortunately for music lovers across Illinois, the municipal band is a constant, a cherished part of the summer landscape in communities statewide...]]>
Mental health budget cuts are insane - Neglecting mental health services is bankrupting our health care system http://illinoistimes.com/article-18760-mental-health-budget-cuts-are-insane.html Mental health budget cuts are insane - Neglecting mental health services is bankrupting our health care system
President Trump and Republican congressional leaders justifiably want to curb the alarming growth in government health care spending. Their proposed solution? Cut $880 billion in federal funds from Me...]]>
Talking to the other side http://illinoistimes.com/article-18727-talking-to-the-other-side.html Talking to the other side
 I’ve had a number of conversations recently that convince me our country is divided into two political camps separated by a deep and uncomfortably wide gap. No, I’m not talking about liberal...]]>
Casino bills taking billions from Illinois education http://illinoistimes.com/article-18711-casino-bills-taking-billions-from-illinois-education.html Casino bills taking billions from Illinois education
 Having passed the Illinois Senate on May 17 and pending in the House, Senate Bill 7 would authorize a Chicago Casino Development Authority (CCDA) as a government unto itself via a “perpetual�...]]>