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Articles Posted by jfd1776

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  • Dwindling Jobs... And Attacking the Producers

    02/07/2016 8:54:16 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 6 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | February 6, 2016 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    How would you react to the following news stories? Former Shoppers Fined $5,000 for No Longer Frequenting Nearby Mall Residents of Anytown, USA were surprised to receive invoices in the mail from their local county government Friday. The county identified people who used to shop in the local mall but, due to reports of muggings, rapes, and vehicle theft at the mall, switched to shopping at other, safer malls, or just doing it online. The thousand dollar a year fine was based on the estimated amount of revenue the mall says it lost due to their departure. Professional economists, when...
  • Presidential Elections and Other People's Freedoms

    01/29/2016 2:46:37 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 1 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | January 29, 2016 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    When faced with a choice between different politicians at election time, our natural instinct is to ask “Which one will let me do what I want to do?” It’s natural. Sure, it may seem selfish, single-minded, narrow. But it’s natural. We have only one vote, so we think of our own lives, and the possible ways that the candidates might want to control our lives, and we think about what we personally like to do, and so we study the candidates to see which ones seem most open-minded about “allowing” us our freedom, vs. which ones want to take it...
  • New York Values, Chicago Values, and America's Values

    01/16/2016 6:44:17 AM PST · by jfd1776 · 5 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | January 15, 2016 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    A lifetime ago, when the first George Bush was running for president (that’s George H. W. Bush, also known as “41” or “Bush I” to political wonks), people began to challenge the Bush campaign on their commitment to family values… and his wife, the kind and well-intentioned Barbara Bush, replied in exasperation “Whatever you mean by ‘family,’ that’s what we mean by ‘family values.’” The voters were not amused. But it reminded us of a divide in our politics, one that has existed for a very long time, and isn’t likely to go away anytime soon. There is an American...
  • The Modern Left and the Crippling of Markets

    01/13/2016 1:50:58 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 8 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | January 13, 2016 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on the last State of the Union Address from Barack Hussein Obama… The modern Democratic Party has made no secret of the fact that they detest the free market. No, not dislike, not disrespect, not even misunderstand... they detest the free market. From Secretary Hillary Clinton haughtily declaring to Senator Bernie Sanders famously declaring that 23 brands of deodorant are … the leading lights of the modern Democratic Party are dim bulbs indeed, when it comes to economics. They proudly refuse to understand the subject, and they set themselves up as superior to its realities. It has long been...
  • Parasitic Infection by Executive Order

    01/06/2016 1:42:47 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 8 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | January 6, 2016 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    By John F. Di Leo - REFLECTIONS ON GUN CONTROL AND THE ROLE OF GOVERNMENT Residents of Milwaukee, Wisconsin get their water from the city. Like most cities, the government operates water treatment plants, which filter out all sorts of impurities, both living organisms and other contaminants, so that people can trust the water that runs from their faucets. In the early 1990s, an environmentalist city government made a few changes in the city’s water filtration network. Making environmentally-friendly changes to a treatment system may be nice to protozoa such as cryptosporidium, but it’s not very nice to the residents...
  • Climate Change and the Lessons of a Winter Storm

    12/30/2015 2:56:58 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 9 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | December 30, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    On Monday, December 28, 2015, Chicagoland was hit by a particularly unpleasant ice storm. No, not a blizzard – we get them every year – this was an ice storm, the kind where you’re peppered by tiny bits of ice as you walk or run to your car, the kind that leaves inches of slush and ice on the ground instead of nice soft snow. The kind that’s even more painful, even more dangerous, than most snowstorms. The kind that weighs down power lines, causing them to collapse and leave whole towns without power. It wasn’t the worst of the...
  • Christmas Shopping in Chicago - In Line or Online, How Times Have Changed

    12/25/2015 7:20:46 AM PST · by jfd1776 · 14 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | December 24, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    If you regularly drive north from Chicago to Milwaukee on I-94, as I do, you have watched Amazon’s Kenosha distribution center grow by leaps and bounds. The parking lot is full, day and night, as it is in online retailers’ similar facilities all over the country nowadays. They may be on the outskirts of a metro like the Kenosha one, or in the heart of town, like Amazon’s 26 urban fulfillment centers in Houston, New York, San Francisco, Miami and Atlanta, often saving a blighted neighborhood by new construction and new jobs that no other business could justify bringing there....
  • Boots on the Ground, in a New York Forest

    12/16/2015 4:48:49 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 2 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | December 16, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on the immigration of Tashfeen Malik, and the search for balance in a war-torn world… By the morning of September 23, John Anderson (not his real name) had had a very rough 24 hours. In his line of work, that might not have been unusual, but it was rather new for him. He’d been in this job for a year and a half, and had just closed a pretty substantial deal the day before. The discussions began on the night of the 21st, and went on well into the night, but by morning, an impressive operation was as good...
  • Hillary Clinton and Her Dangerous Deeds: The Question of Immigration Limits

    12/12/2015 2:08:38 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 6 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | December 12, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Hillary Clinton, along with her allies in the mainstream media, have taken great delight in attacking Republicans lately, on the subject of Presidential candidate Donald Trump’s (and others’) calls for restrictions on muslim immigration … especially in light of the Obama Administration’s current efforts to import tens of thousands of un-vettable alleged Syrian “refugees” in the midst of a war. Never mind that no country EVER allows unchecked immigration from a country with which it is at war. It doesn’t happen, for reasons that are obvious to any conscious individual. The Obama Administration counts on the American people’s willingness to...
  • Black Friday on Chicago's Magnificent Mile

    12/01/2015 10:59:53 AM PST · by jfd1776 · 9 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | December 1, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Black Friday has long been known as the biggest shopping day in America. It gets its name from the fact that this is the magical day on which retail sales are so huge, even retailers who are having bad years tend to finally reach profitable status when the dust settles on the end of this Day-After-Thanksgiving shopping frenzy. The 2015 Black Friday, however, will also be remembered, by hundreds of thousands of people, as the year in which their trip to downtown Chicago was interrupted by obnoxious protesters. The demonstrations on Friday, November 27, 2015 were so overwhelming that Michigan...
  • The Colander and the Driver's License

    11/18/2015 12:07:41 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 18 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | November 18, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    For as long as there has been a free press, there has been some form of “news of the weird.” It may be a humorous feature during a radio or TV newscast, or a throwaway corner to fill space in a newspaper… the funny-but-true story has always had a place in journalism. With the advent of social media and internet websites, where publishers no longer have to pay for each column inch or count every second of broadcast time, the place for silly news has grown. And there’s nothing wrong with that… as long as it keeps its proper place....
  • Dear Dr. Carson: Our Founding Fathers Were Not Novices

    11/09/2015 2:27:00 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 21 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | November 9, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Late in the evening on November 4, 2015, Dr. Ben Carson sat down to his computer, as he reportedly does regularly, to answer questions that had been sent to him on Facebook during the day. His November 4 post had the desired effect. With 300,000 likes and 180,000 shares (at this writing), read aloud by major talk show hosts from Rush Limbaugh in Florida to Joe Walsh in Chicago, this post is the dictionary definition of “going viral.” So as a politician, he deserves congratulations; the post was effective. But as an honest statesman, it fell short. The Question of...
  • Palatine Makes the News - As Civilization Declines

    11/04/2015 11:41:01 AM PST · by jfd1776 · 5 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | November 4, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    We could begin by looking at this from the perspective of political philosophy. In the early 1790s, when our Constitutional government was in its infancy, Secretary Hamilton proposed a national bank that we definitely needed, but which was not specifically authorized by the Constitution. A decade later, President Jefferson’s delegates to France brought back an irresistible offer – to purchase a third of a continent from France for pennies an acre – which just as clearly lacked Constitutional authorization. In both instances, the opposing party said “You can’t do that without an Amendment! You’ll regret setting the precedent!” But they...
  • Economic Forecasts and Faux Surprise

    10/27/2015 9:06:28 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 1 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | October 26, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    As this is championship season in sports (yes, its always championship season for some sport), lets begin our discussion with a sports analogy. Over the course of a game, we have seen our beloved Home team riddled with injuries. Our star players have been physically and emotionally clobbered, as the Visitors have used every tool at their disposal against us, regardless of the rule book. They tripped and tackled our starters, given us two broken legs and three broken arms, driving five of our best out of the game. Kicking our boys during time outs, shooting darts from dart guns,...
  • The Trans Pacific Partnership: Just Change for the Sake of Change, or Well-Disguised Destruction?

    10/12/2015 11:13:15 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 2 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | October 12, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    The short version the one we know from the mainstream media (MSM) is as follows: The TPP is a terrific trade deal which would increase our economic activity on both sides of the Pacific, and which might be the greatest lasting victory of the Obama administration. It involves some unsavory compromises, but the benefits far outweigh them, if the administration is to be believed. And that may be true. But it may also be very wrong. The fact is, the Trans Pacific Partnership is a massive agreement that changes the entire scope of international trade policy, and merits...
  • Murder, Motive, and Challenging an Approach

    10/06/2015 8:50:26 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 11 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | October 5, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    September was another month of murders in Chicago. We have seen the murder rate and the attempted murder rate, too skyrocket in recent years, in Chicago, Baltimore, New York, St. Louis all homes of half a century or more of liberal policies, all laboratories of Leftist solutions, all booming centers of the modern welfare state and the omnipresent leviathan. How could this happen, we ask ourselves? Why is the murder rate up? Every time a murder or mass killing occurs, the Left immediately aims the focus of the investigation in the direction of the weapon. Was it...
  • The Vicious Circle of the Leviathan State

    09/27/2015 5:45:30 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 7 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | September 26, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    By John F. Di Leo - Reflections on the latest tax hike request from the City of Chicago... Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel has asked for a massive tax increase. No surprise there. Massive tax increases have been the stock-in-trade of the Democratic Party for a century, so it barely merits comment nowadays. Its what you expect when you elect Democrats (the sad thing is that you expect an equal level of opposition to taxes when you elect Republicans, but contrary to the laws of physics, such an equal and opposite reaction rarely appears). The oddity of this new one ...
  • Handicapping a Presidential Campaign: What Works, What Doesn't, and What Wins?

    09/20/2015 6:30:24 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 1 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | Sept 19, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Nobody can predict the future. Not Nostradamus, not Karl Rove, not the Oracle at Delphi. But as primary voters, we must try. Not because were going to Las Vegas to bet on the election, but because every primary race is dependent on some judgment about the likely result. In November, voters only need to ask one question: Which of the major party candidates would be better in the office? But in the primaries and caucuses, we have several questions to ask: Which of our choices would be best in the office? Which of our choices has the best shot in...
  • Labor and the State: A Lesson in Counter-Productivity

    09/08/2015 4:04:32 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 1 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | September 8, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Like many speakers, as a starting point for anecdotes, or as an establishment of credentials, I sometimes start out my lectures by mentioning how long Ive been with my current employer, how long Ive had my license, or how long Ive been in my industry. Last week, I caught myself as I mentally added up the latter, and realized that I have been in the workforce now for forty-four years. Yes, that IS a long time for a 52-year-old. But it is probably a story worth recounting, particularly when Labor Day rolls around, because as I think back on my...
  • Black Lives Matter - But Not to Democrat Politicians

    09/05/2015 7:58:17 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 7 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | September 5, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Something changed in America in the summer of 2014. A criminal, as low a lowlife as a man can be, knocked down a store proprietor and robbed his shop for drug supplies, sauntered down the middle of the street, attacked a policeman, and died in the struggle exactly as it often goes, when a violent thug attacks a policeman (thats one of the main reasons that, traditionally, criminals dont attack policemen!). And instead of America uniting in sudden recognition of the dangerous job of the modern big city policemen, America was divided, as an incomprehensible movement developed around the...
  • A Murder at Dawn, and the Difference Between Left and Right

    08/31/2015 11:32:59 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 4 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | August 31, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on the Roanoke television murders... A LIBERAL RESPONSE: A man is overweight, perhaps by a couple hundred pounds. The liberal responds in force, closing the fast food restaurant at the corner, shutting down the pizzeria across the street, banning the ice cream shop down the block from selling to him, limiting the soft drink size at the convenience store next door to only 20 ounces at a time. The fact that the man was already heavy when he moved into the neighborhood and the fact that he eats ordinary food from the grocery store, just too much of...
  • Government's Wasteful Spending, from the Forest to the Trees

    08/22/2015 5:59:19 PM PDT · by jfd1776
    Illinois Review ^ | August 22, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on the release of the HUD watchdog's report on wasteful public housing assistance... The watchdog for the Department of Housing and Urban Development released a report. Some 25,000 families, only about 3% of the system, depending on how you look at it, receive federal housing assistance despite having earnings well above the income limits required to qualify for such subsidies. Major publications on both sides of the argument such as the Daily Caller on the right and the Washington Post on the left immediately seized on the issue and rightly blasted it. How dare the government provide...
  • Hillary Clinton and the Needle in the Haystack

    08/15/2015 6:00:02 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 23 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | August 15, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    For over a year, the press has been minimizing its coverage of the Hillary Clinton email server issue, as Congress and the conservative media have been trying to get to the truth of the matter. The facts, as shared, are simple enough: As Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton chose to violate the law and route all of her email traffic, both personal and work-related, through a private email server in her home in Chappaqua, New York. This kept the emails out of the security and record retention protocols of the federal government, and potentially added an additionally severe crime if...
  • Are There Second Chances in Illinois Politics?

    08/13/2015 1:49:56 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 3 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | August 13, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on the Kirk campaign and the helper scandal In the classic Kaufman & Hecht comedy The Front Page (and its wild remake, His Girl Friday), there is a moment when everything looks darkest for our heroes, as the governor and mayor are about to arrest the publisher and editor for harboring an escaped criminal when all of a sudden a piece of evidence falls into their hands (proof of attempted bribery of one Mr. Pettibone by the governor and mayor), which gives them a second chance, an opportunity to escape punishment for their error and come back on top,...
  • Victory and Defeat - When it's in Your Hands... and Mark Kirk's

    08/05/2015 12:20:14 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 60 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | August 5, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections and a bit of a primer on Illinois next U.S. Senate race Parties sometimes get a bum rap. Oh, not always; theres a lot that political parties do that makes them deserve everything said about them. The Democratic Party, for example, is now so uniformly socialist that, when asked on-camera to list any differences between a modern Democrat and a socialist, DNC Chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman-Schultz (D, FL) was unable to identify any. The Republican Party isnt that easy to categorize. The GOP is the only major party to the right of the Democrats, so it basically...
  • The New Normal and a Very New Spin

    08/03/2015 7:57:54 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 7 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | August 3, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    It began quietly enough. A talking head on television would say its unfair to expect the robust economic boom of the 90s again; we had the peace dividend to thank for it, and its not like the Soviet Union is going to fall again. Or a columnist reminds us of the invention of the modern computer in the early 80s, and then the arrival of the internet age in the 90s; such technological breakthroughs were a once-in-history occurrence; theyre responsible for the booms we remember, nothing else. Or some caller on the radio, aged and experienced, with opinions fortified by...
  • Of Presidents and Presidencies, and Things Presidential

    07/24/2015 8:15:53 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 2 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | July 24, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    We worry about our presidential primary process. Some wonder why. Some believe that we worry too much, and it all fixes itself in time; why get so worked up? Be patient, they say, the primaries will handle it, and then comes the election, dont worry so much. And if youre not in an early primary state, you have no effect anyway, so youre better off saving your energy and just watching TV or going to a game. So were told, especially by friends and acquaintances who just dont think it all matters that much, and who wonder why were willing...
  • Iran-Kerry and a World Turned Upside-Down

    07/17/2015 7:39:49 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 5 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | July 17, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    There has always been a rule an overriding rule in the common law, in the criminal justice system and in the insurance industry that society must not allow you to profit from a crime you committed. For example, if you file an insurance claim on your house, and its proven that you burned it down yourself, you get imprisoned for arson and the insurance company gets all the money back. Or if you file for the life insurance on your parent or spouse, and its proven that you murdered him or her for the insurance money, you get...
  • Barack Obama Lets Loose the Prison Doors

    07/14/2015 6:26:17 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 8 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | July 14, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    On July 13, 2015, Barack Obama proudly announced 46 commutations at a federal prison. Its not unusual for a president to pardon people or commute sentences. Many presidents and governors do so occasionally, hopefully when they are absolutely convinced that the criminal justice system otherwise failed an innocent defendant. There are exceptions, of course. Gerald Ford pardoned his predecessor, Richard Nixon, in a well-intentioned effort to heal the nation after the Watergate scandal (though calling any political kerfuffle a scandal, in light of the Obama administrations notorious daily crimes, does seem an abuse of the word). And Bill Clinton used...
  • Alexander Hamilton: The Plain of Weehawken and the Loss of a Hero

    07/11/2015 11:32:06 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 17 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | July 11, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on the anniversary of Americas most tragic duel Early in the morning of July 11, 1804, the Vice President and the former Secretary of the Treasury stood on the Plain of Weehawken a wild land in New Jersey, where the laws were different from civilized New York, across the water and they had their interview, like many a pair had before them, on that field of honor. There was a time in American history when every product of our education system (yes - public, private, and homeschooled alike!) knew the participants in our most famous duel. Children...
  • The Revolving Door of the U.S. Border

    07/08/2015 6:58:13 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 3 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | July 8, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    On Wednesday, July 1, 2015, a young American woman Kathryn Steinle, age 32 was shot in the back as she and her father were strolling on a pier in San Francisco. She died in his arms, pleading Help me, help me! The facts in the case are plain, and undisputed. We dont even need to fill the story with the adverb allegedly, since the demon who did it has admitted to have done it (though he claims it was accidental, in alternate moments claiming either that the gun went off on its own or that he was just...
  • The Confederate Flag - Public Places and Private Lapels

    07/01/2015 7:31:12 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 11 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | July 1, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    I often wear a suit or sport coat, which means that I have a lapel on which to wear a lapel pin. As an American, I often wear an American flag pin, but I do frequently wear others sometimes a Celebrate Freedom pin from a veterans group, sometimes a little feet pin from a pro-life group, sometimes a campaign button for whoever Im supporting that election season. In addition, I sometimes wear a pin celebrating my ethnicity. Im Italian, Irish, Scotch-Irish, Austrian, and German. I happen to identify mostly with the Italian and Irish aspects of my heritage, so its...
  • The Ten Dollar Bill - So Much More than a Means of Exchange

    06/23/2015 6:48:27 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 13 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | June 23, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    What is a nations currency? Ask an economist, and hell tell you that a U.S. Dollar bill, or a European Euro note, or a British Pound note, for that matter, is not really objectively worth its denomination. Its just a piece of cotton paper, with a drop of ink and a magnetic strip. Its not worth much. But it represents confidence in the nations economy, and it serves the economy as a means of exchange a few pennies worth of decorated cotton serving to enable the purchase of a $1 loaf of bread, or a $10 lunch, or a...
  • Yet Another Double Standard in American Politics

    06/12/2015 11:04:44 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 6 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | June 12, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    In America, when friends learn that a woman is being abused by her husband or boyfriend, what do they do? They stage an intervention, help her find a lawyer, get a restraining order, get her out of there as fast as possible. When a son or daughter learns that an elderly parent is receiving bad care at a nursing home, what do they do? Pack up Dads or Moms stuff, help them move to a better, safer place, file a complaint with the states attorney or the board of health, press charges, but first and foremost, get them out of...
  • Metadata Meets Its Master But Are We Less Safe As A Result?

    06/02/2015 2:37:31 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 5 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | June 2, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Since the NSA stopped collecting metadata about telephone calls on Sunday, May 31, 2015 (or was ordered to stop, anyway with this government, you never really know), many have declared that we are a less safe nation today. And this is true; we ARE a less safe nation today. But as usual, both the answer and the foundation for it are largely misunderstood, in a nation in which a biased press refuses to tell the whole story, and a disinterested public refuses to study the issues until the third presidential debate rolls around every four years. To answer the question...
  • From the Heartland to Tripoli - American Interests in a Global Economy

    05/30/2015 8:27:54 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 1 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | May 30, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on isolationism and foreign policy, on Decoration Day... When the field is crowded, candidates find a way to differentiate themselves. No surprise there. One way that some candidates have chosen in recent years is to set themselves apart from the war hawks of the other party, or even of their own party, by preaching isolationism, and by declaring that isolationism is the true heritage of our Founding Fathers. They will quote Presidents Washington and Jefferson, who warned, on occasion, of the need to avoid entangling alliances like those of the Old World. And they will imply that isolationism ...
  • Would You Like Fries With That Demonstration?

    05/21/2015 1:22:43 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 13 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | May 21, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on the "minimum wage hike" protests today at McDonald's Oak Brook headquarters... On a cool May morning, as McDonalds shareholders met to determine the fast food giants future course, some 2000 protesters, hailing from as far as Kansas City and New York, descended upon them to present a list of demands. Raise the starting wage to $15/hour, they threatened, lest the company be forever branded with such monikers as Exploiter, Villain, Robber Baron and Tyrant! The Chicago Tribune, newspaper of record in the blighted metro area that McDonalds calls home, was happy to give front page coverage to these...
  • Regulating the Railroads in Amtrak's America

    05/14/2015 3:03:02 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 4 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | May 14, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on the May 12, 2015 Amtrak train crash in Philadelphia... First Day at School Youre a gym teacher at a new school, in charge of 30 kids in a gym, on your first day at work. You cant keep your eye on all of them at once. While you were helping a couple of kids improve their free throws at one end, you hear a shout at the other end of the gym; one kid knocked another down. Scenario 1: You dont know either kid at all, so you objectively ask the kids to all explain what happened. You...
  • For What the State Hath Giveth, We Thank Thee...

    05/12/2015 11:02:12 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 1 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | May 12, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on the origin of opportunities, on the opening of UI Labs' new research center in Chicago UI Labs Digital Manufacturing Center opened today at Goose Island in Chicago on 94,000 square feet of a property that was once the Republic Windows and Doors factory and you will celebrate. Its an important facility everybody says so, particularly the people who made it possible, and they should know. Its going to remake American manufacturing, by figuring out how to modernize the American manufacturing floor. You should thank Rahm Emanuel (D, Chicago) and Bruce Rauner (R, Wall Street) and...
  • Debt-Free College? Democrats Learn the Wrong Lessons from Obamacare

    05/08/2015 1:25:37 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 5 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | May 8, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Hillary Clinton, Marty OMalley, Liz Warren, and other 2016 Democrat candidates for the presidency are apparently trying to differentiate themselves from the real-world economics of Republicans by returning to the tried-and-true method of promising to rob Peter to pay Paul, while giving the impression that YOU dont have to worry, because, dear voter, YOULL never be Peter. The latest method is in capitalizing on the headlines about crippling college debt by setting "debt free college" as their goal. Now, as far as that goes, its a perfectly worthy goal. Pay as you go living has always been the responsible advice...
  • Cities, Governments, and the Seeds of Destruction

    05/05/2015 9:13:32 AM PDT · by jfd1776
    Illinois Review ^ | May 5, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on the burning of Baltimore... Imagine that your boss assigns you to a research project. You work late nights for a month doing research; you present your findings on time, and your boss rips it up and directs the I.T. department to scrub all your research from your computer. And then he tells you to start from scratch and do it again. Or imagine that your boss assigns you to design an advertising campaign. You hire the models and photographers, write the copy, build the storyboards, film the commercials and print ads and present them for his consideration. He...
  • Learning the Lessons from the Fall of Troy

    04/24/2015 11:12:50 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 13 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | April 24, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    As the 2016 election approaches, have we learned anything from history? On April 24, 1184 B.C., as legend has it, the Trojans looked out over their city wall, and saw the Greek ships sailing away, the Greeks apparently having given up after ten long years of war. All that was left was a horse. A great big, huge, heavy, beautiful horse statue on wheels, bearing a note, reading The Greeks dedicate this thank-offering to Athena for their return home. Well, the Trojans were no fools; they saw a great big piece of art, obviously the result of great work and...
  • Hillary Clinton and the End of Iowa?

    04/20/2015 9:26:03 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 11 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | April 20, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Lets begin this one with a disclaimer: I detest the current presidential primary process. I consider it an unfair and anachronistic approach that should have long ago been corrected. That being said its the method we have, so for the time being at least, the games begin in Iowa Our major-party presidential nominees are selected through a time-honored tradition. Based on the theory that the people best suited to select a president are those who know him best, our system relies on aspiring candidates moving into Iowa and New Hampshire for months at a time, visiting small towns throughout these...
  • Overheard in a Conference Room in Havana

    04/10/2015 2:27:44 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 2 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | April 10, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    The following transcript could not be authenticated. It was broadcast from a wiretap accidentally placed in a conference room in Havana, but with the generally low quality of the antiquated electronics available in Cuba, some of the audio was muffled and theres always the little matter of questionable translations from the Spanish but here is what we have, submitted for your consideration without any warranty whatsoever... Lead Voice #1: Lets get to work, men. I meet with the Great Satan tomorrow. Underling Voice A: Youre dying, boss? Lead Voice #1: No, you idiot, I mean the president of the United...
  • And the Coronation Goes To... (Reflections on this point in the presidential nomination race)

    03/31/2015 2:51:43 PM PDT · by jfd1776 · 15 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | March 31, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    We can save the bother of waiting a year, and spending a lot of money and time on a primary season, by just giving the nomination to Jeb Bush now. His grandfather was a senator, his father was president, his brother was president. Its in his genes. But on top of all that, he has genuine accomplishments of his own; Jeb Bush is a successful two-term governor of a critically important state, the electoral college powerhouse and sometime swing state of Florida. Add to all this the fact that his marriage to a Hispanic wife gives him some undefinable cred...
  • Political Issues in an Age of Economic Nihilism

    03/22/2015 6:18:05 AM PDT · by jfd1776 · 3 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | March 21, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    What does it mean to be springtime in an odd year in America? As the snow begins to melt, the birds chirp and sing; the trees and bushes bud with new growth. The sun reemerges from its long vacation behind the clouds, and the study of economics takes a holiday. True, this last part probably doesnt apply to everyone. Texans, Oklahomans and Montanans dont forget everything they ever learned in school, just because its time for mayors and city councilmen to seek reelection to their valuable positions at the public trough, but here in the rust belt, where we hold...
  • Illegal Immigration - Inflated Uproar Over a Single Issue?

    02/28/2015 8:38:18 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 52 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | February 28, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    With an illegal alien population of about 20 million or so, in a nation of over 300 million, one might ask, why on earth are we so focused on this single issue? After all, 20 million is less than ten percent of our population. This nation is suffering. The real issues we need to address include joblessness, drug abuse, gang crime, a crippling national debt, an incredibly expensive but ever-worsening education system, rampant vote fraud, severe military threats from abroad and many more. These are issues that affect everyone in our entire country, not just ten percent of us! In...
  • Confessions of an American Extremist

    02/20/2015 7:08:03 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 13 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | February 19, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    I cannot tell a lie: I am an extremist. As an amateur actor, I have certain beliefs that I hold dear. I detest drama and tragedy; I really only like comedy, both musical and non-musical. I believe the stage is for laughter and song, for tap dances and pratfalls. I wont spend my money buying tickets to see a sad show, and I certainly dont like to waste eight weeks of my life rehearsing to perform in one. Many would call these views extreme. As a trade compliance manager, I have spent my career my day job, if you...
  • From Rome to Philadelphia: Protecting a Nation from the Fate of Lucretia

    02/16/2015 6:05:28 PM PST · by jfd1776 · 16 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | February 16, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    Reflections on the United States Commander-In-Chief, on Presidents Day During the summer of 1787, the member states of the United States of America sent delegates to Philadelphia, hoping that in this new convention, they could right the errors made in the construction of the Articles of Confederation. The nation was in an economic depression that had not ended with the peace signed in 1783, as many had expected. On the contrary, our currency was worthless, our borders were porous, our cargo was in jeopardy on the high seas, and our veterans were destitute at home. The delegates to the Constitutional...
  • The Latest Merger... and the Big Lie of the Obama Recovery

    02/13/2015 10:57:33 AM PST · by jfd1776 · 9 replies
    Illinois Review ^ | February 13, 2015 A.D. | John F. Di Leo
    This weeks business news concerns yet another high profile corporate merger. Less than two years after office supply and computer retailers Office Depot and Office Max were forced into a merger, it now looks like Staples will be acquiring them. Where once there were three retailers, soon (or eventually, since such consolidations do take time), there will be only one. The Resident of the White House, no doubt remembering that the success of Staples was an early credit to his rival Mitt Romneys storied career as an investment wizard, lost no time in taking pot-shots against Staples for its employee...