Fourteenth Ward alderman Ed Burke was in fine form at Wednesday’s City Council meeting.

Always known for quoting the greats in his council orations, he went on a binge to rival John Bartlett, quoting, though not always accurately, William Shakespeare (twice), Ralph Waldo Emerson (twice), Tom Brokaw, Studs Terkel, and Martin Luther King Jr.

The line from Terkel–“Take it easy, but take it”–came just before the the council passed a resolution, sponsored by 48th Ward alderman Mary Ann Smith, honoring the late great writer, activist, and historian.

A few minutes later, Burke quoted King: “The time is always right to do what is right.” (By the way, I’m not sure where or when King said this, but countless bloggers credit him with saying it.)

Soon after the council voted 47-0 to spend millions of dollars that our schools and parks desperately need to subsidize what is essentially real estate speculation on the near south side.

I think Shakespeare said it best: “O shame! Where is thy blush?”