Posted inNews & Politics

Heavy Toll

As head of the tollway system Robert Hickman had power, influence, and lots of friends. Then he was accused of abusing his position, in a bizarre case that exposed the inner workings of a 40-year patronage empire. Hickman went to jail. His crime? Good que

Posted inArts & Culture

Lecture Notes: payback time for the ‘burbs

Minnesota state representative Myron Orfield is America’s leading proponent of “metropolitics,” a strategy to persuade suburbs to take more responsibility for urban decay. The 32-year-old, second-term Democratic lawmaker has pursued measures for fair housing, property-tax sharing, and urban reinvestment by convincing blue-collar, inner-ring suburbs to align themselves with Minneapolis and Saint Paul rather than the […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Circuit Rider

Taking the bus was Bill Wendt’s only way to get to Schaumburg on a recent Tuesday night. This near-west-sider is car-free and didn’t think it made sense to traverse the 25 miles on his one-speed bicycle. Wendt had called me the previous week and, in his usual style, gotten right to the point: the Schaumburg […]

Posted inNews & Politics

Daley’s Tree Thing

In the July 29 Letters, a City Hall spokesman doubts Ben Joravsky’s statement–in a July 15 Neighborhood News story about a citizen exposing the damage that asphalt machines inflict on trees–that “‘many’ environmentalists disparage Mayor Daley’s tree-planting efforts.” Terry Levin, the Streets and San man at the spin doctor wheel, is entitled to an opinion, […]