I am happy to report that the parents of students from Grant and Johnson elementary schools are appealing the Iowa Department of Education's administrative law judge's decision to uphold the closings of the two facilities.
A budding political dynasty is in deep trouble on Chicago's Southwest Side. No, I'm not talking about the attorney- general candidacy of House Speaker Michael Madigan's daughter, Lisa. And I'm not referring to former Senate President Tom Hynes' son, Dan, whose re-election as state comptroller is all but assured.
The disturbing connection between Enron executives and the current administration becomes more apparent with each passing day. During the Florida presidential re-count, each party established a fund in support of its respective candidates.
When the Illinois Libertarian Party asked Cal Skinner whether he'd run for governor on its ticket, he wondered what was in it for him. The answer was a political party that's very good at collecting petition signatures, which fits right into Skinner's plans.
You know it's bad news when the Republican state treasurer has more money in her campaign account than all her fellow GOP statewide candidates and the state Republican Party combined. Plus, to top it all off, most big-time Republican who filed campaign-finance disclosure reports last week - except Treasurer Judy Baar Topinka - did business with a corrupt little mail house called Unistat, run by the now infamous (and indicted) Roger "The Hog" Stanley.
Responding to the bombshell revelation that senior bankers at Citigroup actively helped Enron hide billions in debt, Enron Lawyer of Last Resort Robert Bennett deftly summed up the real reasons for the current economic crisis: "Most of the problems - not all of them - are things that have been legal and acceptable.
After the scandals at Enron and WorldCom, a lot of people and investors are asking: Are there a lot more companies out there with serious accounting problems? The answer is yes, and the reason is pretty simple.
Lately, the National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL) has been trying to put the best possible face on state-government ethics. But despite some positive press coverage, the group's spin falls way short, particularly when it comes to Illinois.
Lobbyists and attorneys appear to control the universe. No truer words were ever spoken than those that claimed a person's case is only as good as his or her attorney. While the law provides for a more civilized society in many ways, it also allows for chaos.
The great thing about life is the chance to know and love unique, inspiring, and truly noble individuals who make a difference in the lives they touch. Albert ("Al") Stafne is just such an individual. Al quietly painted for years as part of his intellectual expression - a fact not widely known by many who know him.

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