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Inland's Journal
Posted by Inland in Illinois
Tue May 02nd 2006, 07:15 PM
1. Chicago isn't a shining example of a democratic city because americans, including a fair number of democrats, don't like cities. They just don't. Chicago is a place to make money and put up bigger than fuck buildings to make more money. It straddles rivers of water and metaphorical rivers of money. Its universities, hospitals, and seminaries churn out ideas that are controversial or arcane. People can't even figure out what the Board of Trade does or how it does it. It is full of immigrants and scrapers and enormously rich types and streets and defined neighborhoods where inhabitants know ever brick. Most americans don't like that shit one bit, and don't think it's got anything to do with their lives. There hasn't been a city built with a centralized urban core since San Francisco was rebuilt after the earthquake, and the large majority don't value them. They like Las Vegas's faux New York and something Kunstler would criticize.

2. Cities have all those intractable problems that politicians and parties don't like dealing with. Education, crime, drugs, etc. National politicians aren't like Daley, who runs the nuts and bolts of local government on the front lines. If they noticed what we were doing that was good, then they might be cornered into helping. So good news gets ignored along with the bad.

3. The particular problem you picked out, public schools, is a problem that everyone acknowledges, and advances have been made. But to put a point on it, it's a statewide problem of taxes and the amount it takes to support schools. Crap public schools are found everywhere poor kids exist. That's a fact.

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