Monday, August 9, 2010

Laura Washington Revisits Uptown Politics

Sun-Times columnist "Lake Shore Drive Laura" Washington sits back and analyzes Uptowners' reaction to her column announcing Ald. Shiller's decision not to run for re-election.  Big surprise:  She thinks we're all meanies.  (We're vaguely insulted that she doesn't even credit us for some of the information she takes from our blog.)  We find it highly amusing that she refers to the race as a "brewing cauldron" -- a bit of a reaction to all those "The Witch Is Dead" comments y'all made last week?

The most intriguing line:  "Shiller will make a stealth endorsement, offering quiet advice and support."  Yikes!  Here's a note to the candidates, some free advice:  If you take an endorsement from Helen, keep it hidden.  Really hidden.  Because it is death to your campaign. 

On the other hand, the idea of Helen picking up the phone and offering a kindly hand to Molly (who spearheaded Fix Wilson Yard), James (whom she pointedly ignores, even if he's standing right next to her), or Michael (a police officer ... son Brendan's favorite lawsuit target), is really, really funny.

Read the column here.


  1. Just sounds like more of Shiller's PR machine sugar coating things.

  2. What's interesting is the suggestion that Daley is not yet backing Nowotny. Hard to tell if that's true, since Laura Washington's "reporting" seems to consist of having coffee with Helen and reading various websites (she couldn't be bothered to actually call James, Molly or Jim?). And of course, Daley could still remain officially neutral while his people turned out for Nowotny. But the possibility that Nowotny hasn't sealed the deal yet is fascinating.

  3. I don't get this at all

    "Conventional wisdom says Phelan, a vocal Shiller critic, is the front-runner in the 46th; she's the only woman in the contest, and the gay candidates will split the GLBT vote."

    Huh? As far as I know, Carroll and Nowotny aren't GLB or T, so I'm not sure who is splitting what vote.

    Second, that is extremely lazy reporting. Molly is a formidable candidate, but it's anything but conventional wisdom that she's the favorite.

    Michael has a lot of support in the "support the police" camp.

    Cappleman has a base of support built upon his years of service to the Uptown Community(and in full disclosure, that's who the WCE would vote for if he lived on the other side of Dover)

    Molly has a base of support built on her work battling the evil TIFs of Chicago.

    And Nowotny, well I can't honestly figure out who he would appeal to.

    It'll be interesting to see how each candidate works to move to the center. Helen got elected many many times with "her people", so they're a real voice in this election.

  4. so what this article actually tells me is...James Cappleman is the front runner but lady laura can't handle that truth so she is building up both Don and Molly.

  5. *sigh*

    Washington lets everyone know that her understanding of the ward north of Irving is lacking as she fails to make any mention of the strong african-immigrant community, or the growing latino population.

    That, and no offense to Molly, but declaring Phelan as the front-runner while the former candidate has been active since the last election is .. well, it just doesn't quite fit political logic (unless, of course, Laura's wanting to back a particular horse in this race - hence, the extra Nowotny verbiage).

    As for this: The Shiller hatred is vicious and vitriolic; I guess Washington isn't aware that Shiller's supporters return fire with equal (and sometimes more socially unacceptable) vigor.

    Laura would be well served taking up Mark Twain's advice regarding not proving yourself a fool

  6. Nowotny is openly gay, at least that is my understanding. FYI. (Not that matters.)

  7. lady laura doesn't care about issues. lady laura never cared about the issues. She's operating under the worn out mantra that anyone who ever ran against her friend hates all poor people.

    lady laura does however have Helen's same personality trait that has her pushing the us & them approach. lady laura will later learn to let loose of that laughable approach.

  8. yes, nowatny is gay, but I don't think that both James and nowatny splitting the gay vote is going to get Molly elected as Laura predicts. I think James appeals to a little bit more in the community than just the gays.

    I agree with A on this one. Shiller almost wrote the whole article, she'd rather have Molly or Don than let James have the seat. That should tell you something.

    Cappleman for Alderman!!

  9. I would think the beast would want to least effective to be elected. Then she can do the "I told you so," and promote her craziness or someone she can control.

  10. As being part of the GLBT community I don't vote for someone or against them because they are part of the GLBT community.

    I supported Cappleman in the last election but still not sure who I am going to support this time around. I am going to make my decision based what we learn from each candidate in the coming months.

    Right now for me the bottom of the list is Nowotny simple because he is a insider and I think we need fresh blood.

  11. Laura Washington has proven what a divisive idiot she really is.

    And if that wasn't a screaming indorsement (via Shiller) for Don, I don't know what was.

    Don gets in, I'll consider moving. I'll be unable to stomach watching Shiller pull the puppet strings for another 4 years.

  12. IMHO...Laura Washington has been basically a "society column journalist" for a long time. It's fitting that she has a role in smoothing over Helen's record.

  13. Well, if Helen wants to promote the least effective candidate, she better promote someone who never spoke up or did anything about crime until that person decided to run for public office.

    I wonder who that would be?

  14. No wonder the newspaper business it dead they don't even report the facts.

  15. Why would she (and others) assume that someone would vote for a candidate based only on their gender or sexual orientation? Under that logic, I would have voted for Shiller in the last election. Had that happened they would be ice skating in hell right now.


  16. This article looks like it was taken out of Highlights Magazine.

    Molly who? Don who? These two already have a problem communicating with us. Either that or they are way behind in the technology department (which scares me just as much).

    Cappleman is a calculated machine. Wait, no...His campaign manager is a calculated machine sending out his statements, updating his Facebook status and fat fingering his tweets on his milquetoast behalf. don't be fooled by the machine.

  17. Mooshisloose, are you Carrol's campaign manager?

  18. Mooshie,

    Milk toast? Damn, I remember my childhood of putting toast into a warm bowl of milk. "Tanks, Granny", I remember it well. Granny is buried out on da sout side with her husband and assorted other relatives nearby.

    If the Capplenator is milk toast the other candidates need to start drinking from that bowl.

    Although, I do agree with you on the lack of communication from the Don and Molly campaigns. Pathetic. Molly's website is all of a welcome page, some links to news stories and a all too nice letter regarding Shiller not running.

    So far based on local money raised and being out and about Cappleman is the only one running a real campaign. The others are encouraged to prove me wrong.

    As for Laura she is so clearly Helen Shiller's personal scribe that I will comment no more on her. She ain't deserving of my wit, time, or gramatical genius.

  19. QC,

    methinks Mooshie just likes da fact Carroll is a cop. She sees the problems in the ward as being amenable to a law enforcement solution. Given the fiscal realities I don't agree.

    She's entitled to her opinion, wrong though it is.

    Methinks the problems in this ward need someone with more of a social service background. The key to reducing crime in this ward is going to be forcing tough property management on the buildings where bangers live and hang out.

    The bangers need to be forced out so their neighbors, both immediate and down the street, can live in relative peace.

  20. I agree IP. I want an alderman with ninja-like bureaucratic skills who will work the system like a maniac to get problem tenants kicked out of section 8 housing, problem landlords fined and pressured out, and the bad apples among the social service community shut down.

  21. IP > Now I KNOW you are drinking... Really, what we need is an alderman with no real world business experience? Someone whose life story is 100% social servies? I truly and honestly do admire that and frankly, it is a wonderful thing to do with ones life work.. BUT UPTOWN HAS BEEN A FRANKENSTEIN OF SOCIAL SERVICES EXPERIMENTS THE PAST 20 YEARS!!!

    I think it is time to have someone with a different set of experiences as our alderman.. one that does not include just a government job or social services background.. one that understands the need to balance things and not capitulate to those that whine the loudest....

    ...Sorry, I like Molly for this reason... James is a good man, no doubt, but I frankly do not see him as moving this ward beyond what it is... and I, frankly, would like to see it move forward.. not remain static or move backward...

  22. USH, review all the success stories related to public safety by all the candidates and then pipe in about the strongest candidate on public safety issues.

    If you're not sure what they've done, just go to their websites. I'm sure they all mention the many things they've done. Then get back to me about who you think would be better at addressing public safety issues.

    Me, I'm tired of believing talk. I'm a believer in action.

  23. I try to refrain from the whole "you don't live hear, you don't know" type of argument, but in this case it might be necessary. If Washington arrived at her conclusion without talking to any of the residents/bloggers/etc and is just going on Schiller's words because they're friends, well, that's just lazy reporting. It would be great to find out how she arrived at her conclusion about the Uptown situation without talking to anyone else.

  24. Dear Irish Pirate,

    You are correct. I do like our men and women who serve and protect us! Why wouldn't I?

    Me thinks you, Mr. Pirate, need to read more about Mr. Carroll. He's not just a police officer. He is a man who has dedicated his entire life to helping others, not only here in the United States, but all over the world.

    Me thinks you are trying to hack Carroll down to boost your beloved Milquetoast of a man, Cappletoast...or better yet, Milqueman!

  25. @Superhero,

    You got everything right, but the Molly thing. ;-)

  26. Laura Washington was Mayor Harold Washington's assistant press secretary in the 1980s. As we've all heard ad nauseum from Shiller's Farewell Tour Talking Points, Harold chose Helen to be his 26th vote.

    Like so many other diehard Helen and Harold loyalists, Laura is willing to pretend there's no crime in Uptown, that people who criticize Helen are classist and misguided, and that "us versus them" is a valid way of discrediting people.

    Oh, yes, like Helen's other supporters, and Helen herself, she also wouldn't put a Gucci loafer on the sidewalk in Uptown. It's for "those people," but not her.

    She'd much rather condescend to us from the 30-something block of Lake Shore Drive and Whole Foods.

  27. I noticed that many Carroll supporters resort to name-calling when they refer to other candidates on this blog.


  28. Uptown Fictional Character who has amazing powers,

    Molly's "business experience" is one reason I'm not supporting her. The family law firm is dependent on the good will of various elected officials in the Assessor's office and Board of Review. An alderman with that background can't cross the Mayor without expecting repercussions from Mayoral allies like Berrios and his paterfamilias Mike Madigan.

    One way the Mayor controls various alderman is by having some leverage over them. You're an alderman and you have a wife who wants you to get her dumbass brother an exempt job. You go to the Mayor's people and dumbass gets said job. Now the mayor "owns" you on any serious vote or dumbass gets canned.

    Having a family tax appeal law firm is another version of "dumbass". Even if Molly leaves the law firm, just the fact that it exists would be leverage over her.

    Now one can argue that the Fix Wilson Yard lawsuit showed her independence. I would argue that she used it as a means to the end of wanting to get elected. That doesn't mean she didn't work hard and fight the good fight. She did.

    She also signed on as the ward coordinator for the Terry O'Brien for County Board Hack in Chief Campaign. I've belabored that point before, but that is not the action of a reformer. O'Brien is Todd Stroger with a Shamrock and a shilleleagh.

    At worst on that issue she is a careerist masquerading as a reformer and at best she is politically naive and tone deaf.

    Now in fairness to Molly I do like the fact that she was a commercial real estate broker. That experience could help with some of the issues involving businesses in da fine 46th Ward.

    The lawyer thang I could do without. The city council has a plethora of lawyers.

    My main concern is not whether someone is a cop, a social worker, an attorney, or a land based pirate with a parrot on his shoulder and a Guinness in his hand. My main concern is having someone who will on occasion fight the machine.

    Is Molly that person? You may think so, but I don't.

    Is Carroll that person? Maybe. I see Mike Carroll and his eager smile, receding hairline, and resume and see someone who dreams about being "da mare". It's a disease common to many people of Irish extraction in this fine city. I'd run myself but that whole "cheerleader incident" from my youth would be held against me. I was only 42 at the time.

    Is Cappleman that person? I think he will compromise more often than I would like, but unlike my gramer that ain't necessarily a bad thang. Politics is both about fighting on occasion and compromising on occasion.

    There is a time to be General George Thomas, the Rock of Chickamauga, and hold the line and there is a time to compromise. Sorry for the Civil War reference, but I'm in the middle of Sherman's memoir. Sherman was a miserable person and a great Union general. Excuse me whilst I hum the

    Is Nowatny that person? Giggle.

    I really think what this ward needs is about 300 million dollars in public infrastructure investment and an alderman who works hard to drive out the bangers and improve the quality of the social service agencies.

    The first is going to be hard to come by. My checking account lacks that many zeroes before the decimal. The second is easier to come by.

    I think Cappleman is that person. You may disagree. If it ends up with Phelan or Carroll as alderman I won't cry in my Guinness.

    As long as the Alderman doesn't have a ponytail I will be ok with the outcome.

  29. @Jason,

    It's not a name, it's a description. Go google it. That would be

    Here...I won't say a thing about Nowotnys Leather fun. Nope. Won't say a thing. I'll let him say it himself.

  30. @Moose,
    Compare what Cappleman and Carroll have done in the ward with regards to public safety issues. It should all be on their websites. Include all the accomplishments of Carroll when he spent time as a CAPS beat facilitator for 2 whole months but had to step down when he made his campaign announcement. Have it be accomplishments BEFORE 2010.

    Then tell me who's milktoast when it comes to doing real work on public safety issues in the 46th ward. Talk is cheap.

  31. Mooshie,

    Nowatny's choice of dress back in the 80's is irrelevant.

    You're not helping Carroll with quasi homophobic comments like that.

    Anyway considering your alleged schoolgirlish crush on Police Officer Carroll with his handcuffs and leather gun belt you should be careful. Are you familiar with the phrase "badge bunny"?

    If this continues we will only need someone wearing an Indian headdress and another guy wearing a hardhat and we will have a Village People discussion going on.

    I could be the fifth member of the Village People. Goofy guy wearing a kilt and trying to pick up waitresses would be my schtick.

  32. Very interesting that Irish Pirate can post four of the same posts without being monitored isn't it? UU monitors their comment feed. I highly doubt they would let four of the same comments slip by and get posted.

    Email me.

  33. Nice way to twist the story Pirate. You can go on and push Cappleman, but I think it's a mistake. and guess what? i didn't say anything about being a homophobe. You did!

    I'm bisexual you nerd. I am a part of the LGBT community and proud of it. You just seriously stuck your pirate hat down your throat so hard.

    Keep it up. You're doing a wonderful job.

  34. "Very interesting that Irish Pirate can post four of the same posts without being monitored isn't it? UU monitors their comment feed. I highly doubt they would let four of the same comments slip by and get posted."

    Moosh, there were typos. He sent corrected versions. There were four of the same basic comment sitting in the queue and I put all of them through, trusting that IP would figure out which one he meant to post, and delete the rest, which seems to have happened.

    Also, there are several of us who monitor the feed, as time permits during the day, so sometimes doubles get posted, particularly if there are two of us looking at the comments at the same time.

    Nothing "interesting" about it or sinister either.

  35. Thanks Mooshie,

    I posted four of the same comments because I was unsure if blogger was letting let through because of the size of the comment. As soon as I saw they went through I deleted the extra posts.

    I was trying to break it down into two comments.

    You take a swipe at Nowatny for wearing leather and you don't think that may come off as homophobic? If you don't think there aren't homophobic homosexuals you've never been to a GOP or Southern Baptist convention.

    Hell, the current leader of my boyhood Church, da Pope, qualifies as a homophobic homosexual. Or so the makers of Gucci would have you believe.

    You're entitled to support Michael Carroll. Good people can support any of the candidates to include the leather wearing Nowatny. Although, I really have a difficult time seeing any legitimate reason to support Don.

    Now when I comment I try to be both funny and explain my positions. Sometimes I may cross the line. Sometimes I may leap over the line. Sometimes I may not acknowledge a line exists.

    I am far from perfect in my commentary.

    The difference may be that when called on it I may recognize it before lashing out.

    Your leather comment was stupid.

    I've also been guilty of stupid comments. I will undoubtedly post stupid comments again.

  36. That's even more interesting @caring neighbor.

    I would Iike to know everyones name that monitors and posts to the UU blog. If this information cannot be provided, then I would suggest that everyone here be even more skeptical about who the true UU is.

    WHO makes up Uptown Update?

    1. Caring Neighbor
    2. Irish Pirate

    Who else?

    Consider this a calling out Since you have so much power, we should know who is behind the curtain to see why you're swaying the way you have been and mow seem to be doing.


  37. My trust is lost. I still want to know who UU is.

  38. Moosh, three things:

    1 - we have no power. We try to let the neighborhood know what's going on. Period.

    2 - Irish Pirate is not a moderator of the blog.

    3 - If you want to know who we are, you'll have to file a subpoena, but it probably won't work. There's a really nice Amendment to the Constitution that protected our identities, and yours, and those of our commenters as well. (Trust me, you wouldn't know who were are, anyway.) Isn't it nice that we can all post anonymously, even you?

  39. Don't ever call me homophobic again. I spent my entire life fighting against homophobia. I literally flung my body in front of tractor trailers in protest for the organization ACT UP when my friends were dying of AIDS.

    what have you done but mouth off around here?

  40. Mooshie,

    why don't you issue a subpoena? Snicker.

    I am not directly involved with UU. I have sent Uptown Updater emails through a BS email address. To my knowledge I have never met anyone who is directly involved with UU.

    You recall the story about the Cappleman supporter after the last election? Seems like city inspectors enjoyed spending quality time inspecting their coachhouse or garage.

    I value my anonymity. I also have family members who work for a government organization(s) with "Chicago" in da title.

    We live in a ward and city where people are retaliated against for political beliefs on a near daily(Daley) basis.

    Now a few weeks ago you were dead set on moving out of the ward and city. Now you see some conspiracy because I posted a near identical comment four times and then deleted three of the comments.

    It wasn't a conspiracy. The comment was simply too big according to blogger. I was unsure if it posted.

    I hear the "too big" comment frequently. At least I used to in my youth.

  41. Hey mooshie...

    "I'm Uptown Update" I even told Peter, Helen and their goons.

  42. mooshiepie,

    I am the moderator of UU. There, are you happy? I'm "coming out."

  43. Who cares who is behind the UU are people so dumb in Chicago they can't read all these posts and make a informed decision.

    Everyone has a right to their own opinion if I remember correctly this what the USA was about.

    My decision on who I vote for will be a personal analytical one not one based on popularity.

  44. when you are disseminating or withholding information to a large group of people, you have the power. Just like the newspapers and just Ike the news on television.

    When all comments are moderated carefully and you let four or five of the same exact posts go through, why wouldn't I be skeptical? That is very skeptical of a comment monitored blog.

  45. Mooshisloose is certainly not doing Carroll any favors with their behavior on this thread. Pretty embarrassing.

  46. Mooshie,

    I'm not going to get into a battle with you over the leather comment.

    I perceived it as potentially being interpreted as homophobic. Perhaps it was just me misinterpreting your sense of humor or sense of the absurd.

    Happens to me all the time as my sarcasm is difficult to "digest" for most normal people.

    Now if you will excuse me I need a Guinness. I fortify it by tossing in an egg and then putting it into a blender.

    I need my vitamins.

  47. While we are on this topic, or the topic of UU's "power" I'd just like to say that UU is the only source of information in this ward. I have actively sought out information about the ward and there really is no other source. Believe me I have tried to communicate with the alderman's office. (And not in the creepy, go in and complain kind of way.) Very little that I have seen on UU has ever been credibly rebutted. I have actually tried to gather information to debunk some of UU's stories, but have never really come up with anything. (Some things I have but not much.)

    Finally, though I am not one to be defending IP, when you post things like you have on this thread about openly gay men, it is perfectly reasonable to assume you are some kind of homophobic. Nobody knows who you are. I have noticed many Carroll supporters come on this site and make similar comments about James and Don. I find that interesting.

    As a disclaimer, I am a straight white male and I find that stuff offensive. I am also not working for their campaigns or anything.

    Finally, vote for whomever you like. And if thats you that takes the nice pictures, keep up the good work.

  48. Ugh... You people just don't get me do you. That's ok. I'm used to being the outcast everywhere I go. It doesn't bother me.

    1. i am not homophobic. I'm bisexual. Even gay men and women don't believe bisexuals are bisexuals. We know what its like to be discriminated against even in our own community. I have in no way ever wanted anyone to think that my post was homophobic. It was supposed to be a joke. Remember those thungs? I hope so.

    2. You should not equate me with Carrolls campaign. I have met all four candidates. I got out of my chair and shook hands with each person and have been listening and researching every possible thing I can find on these candidates (hence the hilarious videos of nowotny). out of the four candidates, I am for Michael Carroll.

    3. When you challenge me personally, I will fire back at you whether it's a joke or not. I have the guts to fight back when necessary. I might not come off as the sharpest tool in the box, but Im passionate and will defend myself.

    4. UU let five of the same posts of IPs comments get posted. tThis to me was odd because all of our comments are monitored. i immediately thought that IP was an admin of this site and this bothered me tremendously because of his sarcastic nature. If you were in my position, you might have seen what I saw.

    So go on...keep whipping at me. I can take it. But I can tell you this.. I'm still sticking with Carroll. Go out and meet him! maybe then you will understand why Im so passionate about supporting him.


    Oh... I'm typing this from an iPad so don't sue me for typos. Yeesh!

  49. Mooshie,

    if you are familiar with posting on blogger you would know that an administrator would be the last person to overpost.

    If I had been "admin" I could have checked to see if the original comment went through.

    You're welcome to support Carroll. I don't see that as being an indefensible position. I just disagree.

    Any of the four candidates not named Nowatny seem to have legitimate reasons for supporting them. There are also legitimate reasons not to support them.

    Part of the reason I'm supporting Cappleman, besides the photos he has of me at the "Farm at the Zoo" on St. Patrick's Day, is that I simply perceive him as being the hardest working candidate.

    Nowatny seems to be waiting for some Mayoral blessing......ain't gonna be enough Don.

    Phelan clearly worked hard and smart with Fix Wilson Yard, but given her lack of donations from the Ward and her pathetic web presence I question her "fire in the belly". Also the work for Terry O'Brien was MONUMENTALLY silly.

    Carroll seems to be running an also ran campaign.

    One or more of them may prove me wrong.

  50. OMG! I'm trying not to let this turn into some sort of personal attack, but Moosh, you need to bring it down a notch. I come here for healthy debate, not "I literally flung my body in front of tractor trailers"

    I’ve not learned enough yet about the Alderman race to make any considered comments, but people, seriously, this kind of snapping really driving people away when it just turns into the Quadrennial 46th Ward BitchFest.

    Leather, lawyer, lier, lacky, whatever. One more "We know what its like to be discriminated against even in our own community" and people are going to start counting the steps to the door.

    Out of 47 comments so far, between an third and a half were back and forth personal carping. That's just annoying.

  51. "Part of the reason I'm supporting Cappleman, besides the photos he has of me at the "Farm at the Zoo" on St. Patrick's Day,"


  52. Circus, how about a NO on bringing it dow a notch. and yes, I was the person fighting for peole with HIV and AIDS. obviously something you don't know about. Look Ip ACT UP and you will see that, that swhat we needed to do back then to get someone to listen to us.

    When someone calls me a homophobe, I take it seriously. And when you tell me to bring it down a notch, I will only bring it up a few more notches to make a point. If it wasn't for people as passionate and as I am about things, you might have a few less friends and relatives right now.

    Debates are just that. Sometimes words aren't enough. Back then, when people were calling AIDS a gay disease, people like me stood up for others who didn't or couldn't. It was extreme because it had to be.

    Calling me a homophobe is extreme to me. I don't take it lightly.

    Anyone else? Get it out now. I'm ready.

  53. The dust-up after Moosh's comments raises a good point. After years of being burdened with Shiller, the ward suddenly has the "burden" of three well qualified--and actually likeable--candidates, and the consideration doesn't have to be simply who is most likely to be able to beat Shiller. But since we as voters now have to choose between their competing visions for the ward, I'd rather hear what those visions are--with some specificity--before I hear them (or their supporters) bash each other. I'd actually like to know what they plan to do with the Wilson Yard TIF money that isn't pre-allocated (if any) or the Maryville development. And they have time to tell us.

    And Moosh - UU has done some incredible work over the past few years. Without UU, neither the Olympics protest nor the turnout at last summer's 8:00 am fish farm meeting would have happened, and I think those were major factors in pushing Shiller out. So UU has earned the trust and gratitude of a lot of readers, and your accusations probably did not help your preferred candidate. But whatever their personal preferences, UU seem pretty good about alerting the community to everything. So if Mike Carroll feels he's being slighted, he should schedule a public event, tell UU about it, and I'll bet they pass on the word. They're like that.

    BTW, I"m not Uptown Update. Except to the extent that we're all Uptown Update. Then I am Uptown Update. But only that way.

  54. Just for that, Im giving you all another Nowotny video.

    So there. ;)

  55. Interesting comments left, on the Sun-Times story:

    "The casual observer, has to wonder how much raw discontent and downright disgust can be found in a small geographic area? (in this case, the 46th Ward)

    "I've lived here for nearly 20 years, and it is worse now. Shootings. Gangs. Complete lack of new business (save for the Target) and the worst L stop in the city.

    What we have up here is an alarmingly bad social service experiment gone terribly wrong."

    "What the heck? Uptown is the north side counter part to Hyde Park? You’re joshing me"

  56. Well, I've waited to put my 2 cents in.

    Will everyone please calm down. Each of the candidates you support have their pluses and minuses.

    Here's what I would suggest.
    1) See if there is a room available at one of the park district field-houses.
    2) Set up a town hall meeting. A real town hall meeting ala New Hampshire or Vermont where people really talk. (Not in sound bites for the media).
    3) Specifically dis-invite all the named political candidates and their operatives. Yes dis-invite.
    4) Sit down amongst ourselves and hammer out the key issues you want the candidates to address.
    5) Type up the list and circulate them amongst the candidates.
    6) Call them each back for a presentation to the community on the issues developed at the town hall meeting.
    7) Note carefully what they say and what they do not say. Do not accept "fluff" answers to real issues. Make certain you communicate to each alderman that their will be accountability standards for their perfomance in office.
    8) Vote for the candidate that has the best plan.
    9) Hold the new alderman accountable.

  57. Moosh,

    The problem with you ACT-UP people has always been the drama. You're still doing it, even though ACT-UP bombasted itself out of existence years ago because of the very sort of drama you're tossing around in here right now. People see outrageous theatrics designed to draw attention to something, and the theatrics keep their attention so the "something" never gets noticed.

    Like your comments about Nowotny. He's gay. So am I. I've known him for 20 years (in more ways than one), and I'm not supporting him because he has zero public relations presence right now. Your comments about him were offensive to me as a gay man, and all your claims about being bisexual, being an "outcast" from the lesbian and gay community because you're bisexual, and your chest-thumping about ACT-UP don't redeem you--your words say that you're not part of that community, and most of us IN that community have done far more constructive things via our active participation in gay social clubs, gay service organizations, and even the Anti-Violence Project. I don't need to thump my chest and brag...I just do what needs to be done.

    Frankly, I'm tired of the crap the Carroll camp keeps churning out (like you)'s hit-and-run without depth and it's dissing the other candidates without providing real distinctions about what makes Carroll someone I should want to support. It's the sort of crap that Shiller has done all this time, and you should be ashamed that you're doing it regarding Carroll. I won't consider him now because he attracts people like you without publically disavowing the dissing.

    I don't write in here lately, but I feel strongly enough about your outburst that you need a written slap across the face. What people are looking for in this aldermanic election is a display of competence, political savvy, backbone, transparency and responsibility, and the ability to deliver on issues of public safety, economic/retail development, fiscal responsibility, and social responsibility. The candidates have to run on their records and their issue papers and their public events, and also on the sort of people who staff their campaigns and how they run their campaigns. I'm waiting to see how all of that pans out before I throw my support one way or the other, and I suggest that you and the rest of the community would be better-served by being more objective and less subjective at this early stage of the campaign. Your kind of subjective support of Carroll at this point harms him more than helps him.

    You also owe an apology to the gay and lesbian community in general, and (even though we may not support him for alderman) to Don Nowotny in particular for your disparaging remarks about his sexuality and things in his closet. We all have closets.

  58. On a related note to Toto (and since I've only been here for ~2.5 years), have there been public debates between the candidates in the past and more importantly, could we organize one before we hit election time? Since the current candidates seem to have a better grasp on communication than Ms. Shiller, perhaps they would be amenable to such an idea? Of course town hall would be nice too as long as some type of civility could be maintained. Maybe that's just wishful thinking.

    All I can say to the criticism of UU is that if you don't like it, don't read it. I'm grateful for the site since, as others have said, it really has been the only source of information. I'd like to think I've seen enough pro/anti shiller posts to say the censorship is kept to a minimum but who knows.

  59. This thread has really gone off the rails.

    I don't think candidates should be or can be held responsible for every silly comment one of their purported supporters makes.

    Mooshie made a few silly remarks.

    I'm certainly guilty of that on occasion.

    I don't think either of us should be renounced, announced, denounced, dejected, abjected or ejected by any particular candidate.

    At least most posters can agree that Don has no business being aldercritter. It ain't much, but it's sumtin!

    Candidates should focus on the issues and where they agree and differ. Not on every silly or stupid remark that's made on the internet.

    We currently have four candidates for Aldercritter. Any of them would be better than Shiller. It's a low standard I know.

    Three of the candidates are actually appealing. The fourth, well let's just say he would be better than Shiller and I don't recall any male aldercritters who wear ponytails.

    The council may benefit from his style and sartorial splendor if he manages to get elected. It beats the hell out of the image I have in my mind of then Alderman Bill Lipinski wearing a yellow leisure suit to council meetings. Ah, the 70's.

  60. Hey, I thought the fish farm sounded kinda cool actually.....

  61. Ditto Jason - once a person reads all sides of the story on this it could be an interesting "plus" for the community.

    But you must understand that some (not all) of the UU regulars take the position that if the current alderwoman dares to declare that it's hot in August and cold in January, they'll accuse her of fudging the facts somehow.

  62. LL, perhaps there's a reason why so many residents suspect and question anything Helen says. There's an old saying, "Burned once, shame on you. Burned twice, shame on me."

    The problem is that so many of us have been burned so many times that it's hard to keep track of all the times she's screwed us over. A big thanks to UU for giving voice to our shared experiences.

    Like Laura Washington, you prefer to view Helen as a poor innocent victim. I prefer to call it karma.

  63. I heard a rumor the Fish Farm is coming and big urban farming operation in Uptown and Helen is going to be the Director of it.

  64. A,

    I heard a rumor Shiller will be teaching speech at Northwestern.

    Actually, I just made it up.

  65. IP

    I was kidding I would hope everyone could read something and know when it sounds far fetched it probably is.

  66. A,

    I'm serious. Shiller will get a tenured position.

    I would hope everyone could read something and know when it sounds so far fetched that it must therefore be true.

    She will be teaching a 400 level course on "Reaching the Electorate: A Case Study"

  67. Ditto Jason - once a person reads all sides of the story on this it could be an interesting "plus" for the community.

    I've read all sides of the story, several times, and I still can't justify taking money from schools and city services to fund the damned thing.

    And that's the argument: funding.

    Maybe when the city isn't facing a $654M operating deficit we can look into something like aquaponics.

  68. Back to the original Laura Washington column.

    Molly now touts it on her webpage

    Molly is now the "frontrunner".

    In other news Angelina Jolie has left Brad Pitt and is now living with me and her brood in my condo.

    That is slightly less likely than Molly being the true frontrunner at the moment.

    At least Molly added something to her website. Now I would add one of those smilie things if I were so inclined.

  69. LL,

    To be honest, I have never heard anything from Helen about the Fish Farm. It could be something that UU made up for all I know. That is the problem. The only kool-aide I have to drink is the Kool-aide from UU!! Also, I don't believe Helen is totally Satan, she just doesn't get it.


    I don't really believe that the City is facing a $654 million budget shortfall. That is an insane amount. (I don't want to get into it here, but something doesn't smell right.) Something smells fishy....

  70. Actually, with the way the city pisses away money, I'm surprised that it isn't more the $654M.

    Especially when you subtract the $500M that's pulled by TIFs annually.

  71. And yeah, IP ... I'm not sure that quoting a tired ol' hack like Laura Washington is really giving anyone's campaign a shot in the arm.

    I mean, other than Don's, of course.

  72. Yo,

    I'm nor sure a shot in the arm would help Don's campaign. It seems largely non existent to me.

    Perhaps he hopes Daley support will carry the day for him.

    My guess is that if Daley gets real opposition in the election he will not be wasting any resources on aldermanic races.

    One of the calculations political types make is "who is likely to win" and then they throw their support there. They don't generally waste resources on campaigns that are seen as long shots. Now in a close race that is a whole different equation.

    Right now my guess is that Daleyities won't be too active in the 46th Ward campaign. Given the mayor's popularity level I'm unsure if I were running that I would want either his explicit or tacit support.

    About the only support I would seek if I were running would be Steans, Harris and Preckwinkle. I'd also go for Claypool, but that would annoy the regular dems and preclude any other likely support.

  73. "Second, that is extremely lazy reporting. Molly is a formidable candidate, but it's anything but conventional wisdom that she's the favorite."Laura Washington NEEDS Molly to be the front runner. She has columns to write that ignore Don's connections to the establishment.

    Anyone keeping tabs on tickets for street cleaning violations?

  74. Jason-

    Helen has spoken several times about wanting a fish farm. I was there, along with many, many others, at an 8:00 a.m. meeting at Truman College last summer to address the need to double the Wilson Yard TIF. At the meeting, Helen talked about the City buying the Salvation Army building and turning it into a fish farm.

    In fact, if you google "Helen Shiller" and "aquaponics," you'll find articles directly quoting her on the subject. So, once again, a 2 second google search shows UU is not making this up-this is what actually goes on in this woman's head.

    And to the extent a fish farm could be a good idea, a taxpayer funded multi-million dollar fish farm probably isn't the City's highest priority right now--maybe they could decrease class sizes in public schools a little bit first.

    And given Shiller's inability to do anything well (unless it's near her far-away Andersonville home), what are the odds of the whole area smelling like rotting fish waste year-round if she had a say in it?

  75. Usually PC,

    Thanks for the education, but I think you are missing my point. I am not accusing UU of making things up.

  76. IP -

    I wouldn't discount Don's chances, just yet. You know as well as anyone the machine's ability to get out the vote, when properly motivated.

    And/or - if the Shilleristas can project their image of Helen onto Don, things could get interesting.

    And while Daley may not publicly endorse anyone, I'm sure he's interested in the balance of power within Council - so, I wouldn't doubt his interest in the fightin' 46th: overt or otherwise.

    Just because Helen won't be running doesn't mean this won't be an interesting campaign season.

  77. Jason - sorry, my mistake. I never catch sarcasm before my second cup of coffee.

  78. I woke up this afternoon with a hangover.

    This column added to it.

    I refuse to hyperlink. Laura Washington has competition in the hackatood department.

    "Arch Foe"

    "Well Scrubbed"

    "Great White Hope"

    "glittering millennial sign of consumerism"

    This guy is giving Laura competition for strained writing. I get a hernia just reading it.

  79. We hosted the four Aldermanic candidates at our regular meeting earlier this month. Lorraine was there and may be planning to write a recap. We are planning to host another event, probably a candidate forum, sometime after the ballot is set. If you’re interested, sign on at and you’ll receive email alerts. Anyone is welcome to our regular monthly meetings. The next one is 7:00 p.m. Sept. 13th at Fizz on Lincoln, just north of Belmont. Upstairs.

  80. "some residents compare their twinned ideologies to that of the presidential rivalries of Barack Obama and Hilary Clinton"


  81. Based on the DFA endorsement list, think I'll pass.

    Party-firsters make me squeemish.