With guest, Louder Than a Bomb poet Nate Marshall

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Duncan, cheerleader-in-chief for mayor control

Chicago with its clout-heavy political machine, is arguably among the most corrupt, and least democratic cities in the world. Its corruption and its violence were among the main reasons the city was rejected as the site for the 2016 Olympics. It's also among the reasons why the Daley/Duncan Renaissance 2010 plan for school reform has been judged an "abysmal failure" and why Daley carries a lower rating in the polls than former president Bush.

But to Ed. Sec. Arne Duncan--ever beholden to the patronage system which got him his start and greased his way to the DOE--Chicago's top-down mayoral control of the schools is the model.

It matters not who the mayor is, how corrupt the local machine is, or any other particulars. Duncan would still have us believe that the road to reform goes directly through City Hall in every city and is the product of the mayor's top-down decision making.


This morning's headlines (like most morning's) are filled with more reasons why not:
"Mercy Medical Center: Chicago's clout hospital"

The hospital run by the Sisters of Mercy, whose mission is to serve the poor, was bleeding money...But the Sisters of Mercy have clout. Not only with the man upstairs, but with the man on the fifth floor at City Hall -- Mayor Daley...Fogelson, a prominent developer whose business partners have included Daley ally Michael Scott, the Chicago Board of Education president who is also a member of the mayor's Public Building Commission and the Chicago 2016 Olympic committee.

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