Dear Bob, here are some photos of my life here on the campus of Concordia Seminary. I love kids, working with the grounds crew, swimming, playing with my dog friends, and especially my own family people.
There haven't been all that many polls taken in Illinois and Missouri this primary season, maybe because at the outset few pollsters believed there would still be any competitive races. But, here we are with competitive races. There are a few very recent ones at long last and here is how things look (if you believe this years polls).
Missouri--Rep 52 delegates Trump 36. Cruz 29. Rubio 9. Kasich 8 Dem 71 delegates Clinton 47. Sanders 40
This from Real Clear Politics March 3-10 which seems to be the polling area the Post Dispatch is using and some others.
Illinois and Missouri are holding primaries this coming Tuesday and what I find weird is Missouri's practice. In Illinois there will be primaries for all offices down ballot from the presidential while Missouri will only be holding a presidential primary. In August Missouri will hold another primary election for the other offices and this strikes me as an unnecessary expenditure of money. Why not do it all at once instead of bringing all the election judges and voters back again.
As if things couldn't be mucked enough for morning rush hour drivers in Illinois, now there's this. IDOT has closed the right lane just after the 55/70-64 merge which leads to jams going back to one 11. This morning a local traffic report said that the tape used to form the new construction zone lane lines were coming loose causing drivers to guess at which lane they were in.
Ah. So that's what that tangled mess was the past few days. Yesterday while driving home from Collinsville I noticed the lane lines at the construction area all curvy and I thought whoever drove the lane painting truck made a big mistake. I had no idea that this was not paint but tape. And, from Tuesday on there were piles of loose tape all over the left and middle lanes and up against the divider wall. If I had been a passenger in my car i would have taken a picture of all that crumpled up tape.
Another issue this week was the speed at which the big trucks were heading into this tight spot. It's truly frightening to know that around a curve traffic will be slow if not stopped and then look in the rear view mirror and see the window of a huge tractor trailer right on the back bumper. These trucks are flying, straddling one side of their lane line or other, changing lanes without notice and then when free of the construction just taking off like a bat out of hell across the bridge. And, it's not as if IDOT hasn't given plenty of warning about the lane closure, the digital signs are active several miles ahead.
Anyhow, there's nothing to do but put up with it. And be very alert.
As political entities go, it's long been a debate over the need for township governments in Illinois. I'd guess most people would side with the idea that these are a level of taxpayer funded government we no longer need. But for some reason they remain. One bright spot was the action taken by the board of Belleville Township last September when they voted to begin the process of dissolving the 130 year old township.
Thornton Township, in Illinois, spent more than $106,000 on an advertising push aimed at garnering support for awarding the Nobel Peace Prize to a South Carolina church that was the site of a tragic 2015 mass shooting, newly released records show.
The township, which includes some of the poorest communities in Chicago's south suburbs, spent $106,257 on radio and newspaper ads around the Chicago market, mainly aimed at predominantly African-American audiences, records show. Thornton Township's ad purchases followed a $46,000 taxpayer-funded trip to South Carolina taken by township Supervisor Frank Zuccarelli and 14 other delegates in September, which the Daily Southtown detailed earlier this month.
In a previous interview, Zuccarelli said the four-day trip's "main purpose" was to "get knowledge from the people directly in Charleston as to why their reaction was so much different than the reactions in Ferguson and Baltimore," a reference to police-involved killings of young African-Americans in those cities that generated nationwide outrage and violent protests.
John Ruberry, a longtime Chicago area blogger asked this: "What does all of this have to do with Thornton Township? Or Illinois? And why is taxpayer money in broke-and-broken Illinois being pissed away?"
Not many Illinois townships spend money like this, but too often services they provide could easily be provided by other local/state levels of government.
President Obama isn't even out of office yet and the Illinois legislature is considering a bill which would make August 4th (his birth date) a legal holiday. He would be the first ex-president to have this honor while still alive. Other past presidents from other states have had this type of recognition but it was done after their deaths. Truman in Missouri, LBJ in Texas.
The bill states that Aug. 4 would be a "legal holiday," defined as a day when state government offices shut down, and schools and businesses have the option of closing.
Current state holidays observed in Illinois are New Year's Day, Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Abraham Lincoln’s Birthday, Presidents Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Columbus Day, Election Day (in even numbered years), Veterans Day, Thanksgiving, the day after Thanksgiving and Christmas."
Some time today the U.S. Green Building Council will announce its top ten states for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) and Illinois created the most “green” building space per capita in the U.S. for the third year running. LEED-certified spaces use less energy and water, reduce carbon emissions, create jobs and establish a healthier community.
Illinois was first and Maryland second. The entire top ten list will be released later today.
"Illinois’ 44 million total square feet was highest by far than six of the other nine states. California and Texas had more total but less per capita than Illinois."
The Illinois General Assembly was busy getting new laws on the books before leaving on their recess. Each January new laws take effect so it is up to us to know what we're in for. As always some pertain to alcohol and driving-Sen. Jason Barickman’s SB 627/PA 99-0467 requires individuals convicted of two or more DUIs or reckless homicide convictions to install a Breath Alcohol Ignition Interlock Device as a condition of a Restricted Driving Permit.
Another involves something I've never heard of: The sale of powdered alcohol will be prohibited to anyone under 18. What is powdered alcohol?
And continuing on-It will not be lawful for dog owners to leave their dogs outside for a prolonged length up time in extreme weather (heat or cold).
Pumpkin pie will be the state pie
Irreconcilable differences will be the only grounds for divorce.
The Bobcat taken off the endangered species in Illinois and will be a huntable animal
The age to get a hunting license rises from 16 to 18
The Illinois Secretary of State has given approval to a request by a Florida man to place a Festivus pole near the nativity scene inside the Illinois State Capitol. The Festivus pole is 6 feet high and topped by a disco ball. The Florida man is an atheist who intends to use the pole as a way of asserting his First Amendment rights.
Look out Missouri, this Florida guy is coming your way next.
The pole is set to go up December 21. Stevens said he intends to ask for a similar pole be installed in Jefferson City because Missouri will also display a nativity scene at its capitol.
The absurdity of IDOT knows no bounds this year. Not only have they shut down the MLK bridge until December, two WB lanes approaching the Poplar for who knows how long, and now they've closed a portion of WB 64 through East St. Louis Until spring of 2016. They've pretty much made it as frustrating as they can for drivers heading into St. Louis to work.
I'd suggest head over the river on a Sunday and get a hotel room.
Had to laugh though, KMOV gave some suggested alternatives for morning commuters coming from Illinois. There was really only one for those traveling from Belleville, O'Fallon, Swansea, Fairview-consider the JB bridge. They could take the Musial I suppose, but Dale did this yesterday and it was backed up mainly because everything else had lane closures.
Oh sure. Take the JB and end up on 270, the absolute worst interstate for travel in the entire area. This is ridiculous.