The Obamas and Oprah will be in Copenhagen, Denmark, on Friday pushing for the 2016 Olympics to be held in Chicago.
Illinois is known as the “Land of Lincoln,” but Chicago will be forever linked with corruption —- especially joined at the hip with gangsters and Prohibition in the late 1920s and early 1930s.
Al Capone’s name lives in infamy —- but his reign of terror consistently makes for great theater.
In the movie version of “The Untouchables,” Treasury agent Eliot Ness learns he has to learn how to fight the gangster tsunami “The Chicago Way.” Which is not by the book. Unless you use the book to club somebody over the head.
Chicago has always had that kind of eye-for-an-eye mentality. The city of Big Shoulders always seems to have a chip on those shoulders because it takes a back seat to everything New York, New York.
Which is why Chi-town, as it is sometimes called, is also referred to as The Second City.
The gangster era of machine guns and bathtub gin went the way of the rumble seat, but violence reared its ugly head again in Chicago in 1968 at the Democratic National Convention.
It was probably just Chicago’s misfortune that it was the city hosting the convention where all hell broke loose.
The time was right for fighting in the streets, boy. The stage was set with them dang hippies protesting the Vietnam War and the failed policies of the outgoing Lyndon Johnson administration. But in stepped Chicago’s Mussolini, Mayor Richard Daley, who ordered his police force to use Gestapo-style tactics of bustin’ heads.
This all played out on national TV —- and the dissent carried on inside the convention hall where Democrats self-destructed, which eventually paved the way for Richard Nixon to get elected to the presidency.
Of course, Tricky Dicky would prove later that Chicago politics didn’t have a patent on political corruption.
Shady Chicago politics dates back to 1960 as well —- first attributed to sour grapes, and again involving one Richard Nixon. And Mayor Mussolini.
Allegedly (a word not always associated with Chicago politics gone bad) the Mayor made sure thousands of dead votes —- yes, people who have gone on to the Windy City in the sky —- were counted in order to put Illinois in John F. Kennedy’s column and, subsequently, winning him the presidency.
Chicago is a great sports town, for the long-suffering Cubs fans and the Black and Blue football franchise Bears, a team there since the inception of the National Football League.
But even sports wasn’t safe at home from corruption.
The Chicago White Sox —- President Obama’s beloved White Sox —- won the World Series in 2005. But just the name of the team will to this day conjure up when they were dubbed The Black Sox in 1919, when the team threw the World Series.
Just when you thought Chicago had given up the sport of corruption, in 2008 Illinois Gov. Rod “Bleeping” Blagojevich made national news (and is still trying to) with the ol’ pay-to-play scandal when he tried to sell then President-elect Obama’s vacated Senate seat to the highest bidder.
Blago still isn’t playing ball and is maintaining his innocence. By most accounts, he was down on strikes long ago.
And now the Boy Scout —- Eliot Ness reincarnate, President Barack Obama —- wants the Olympics in Chicagoland.
Like most everything else he’s attempting to do, he’s taking this matter on himself like it was, well, an Olympic-sizedevent.
The prez has good relay team members with the Mrs. amd Oprah. But, as he’s finding out with his health care agenda, are the votes there?
It’s a lose-lose situation for the prez to go over to Denmark to try and get the games in Chicago.
If he comes away empty-handed, the Obamahaters will say “So much for Mr. Popular on the world stage” and gloat in his failure.
Should he get the games, Jabba the Butt and his Butt-pluggers will shrill that “Obama is even trying to control the Olympics!”
The GOP is already throwing a hissy fit over Obama going to Copengahen.
House Minority Leader John “Bad Tan” Boehner says Obama is needed here to do the nation’s business, which the GOP wants no part of.
Hello, McFly! Air Force One is the White House in the air. George W. Bush made just as many bad decisions on Air Force One as he did in the White House or on the ranch in Crawford.
There’s ways for a president to handle the nation’s business in 2009 than a president couldn’t have handled in say, 1909.
It’s called mass communication.
What a party of whiners.
Meanwhile, if Obama’s own party, the so-called Democrats, would ever compete in an Olympic event, it better not involve swimming, because they can’t keep their heads above water.
They have the advantage but they still can’t win.
Maybe they’re the reincarnation of the 1919 Black Sox. In this case, the Dems aren’t throwing it as much as they are blowing it.
So will Team Obama bring home the gold?
Nothing else will do.
Silver is for the Lone Ranger.
Bronze is for body builders who spend too much time in the gym with one another.
So far Obama is more like the Cubs than the Bears: passive, not aggressive.
That’s not the Chicago Way.
Right, he wasn’t “born” there.
He’s got to bust some heads, not literally, to prove he’s got the Big Shoulders not only to carry the weight but to get something done.
Until then he’s just more hot air from the Windy City.