Friday, January 30, 2015

What Goes Arauner Comes Arauner

Lake County, like most counties -- no, like all counties -- in Illinois, has a new Governor. Bruce Rauner became a household name earlier this month, when sworn in as the 42nd Governor of Illinois.

Rauner however was introduced to readers of this blog last summer, when your LakeCountyEye strung together the Haha-Bruce-Rauner-Looks-Like-Howdy-Doody meme:
A mere eight months has passed and your LakeCountyEye's hilarious viral meme is already an Internet cliche:

Capitol Fax
Note to Ops: when all else fails, clown around.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Lake County Election Recommission

If you take a walk, I'll tax your feet. Note to Ops: you know Lake County has lost its edge when the Daily Herald runs a story about a beleaguered Election Commission. And the story is not about Lake County:
Just when it looked like officials would create the first written, mutual agreement spelling out the funding and operation of the Aurora Election Commission, Kane County Board members said Thursday they would rather work toward disbanding it.
Kane to investigate disbanding Aurora Election Commission
Is something new matriculating up at the electoral college? Your LakeCountyEye asked Dr. I.M. Bhatschidtkhrazzi, Professor of Election Surprise Studies at the College of Lake County.

"Ya, some activist judge said the Lake County Election Commission was unconstitutional." said Dr. Bhatschidtkhrazzi. "Since then, Lake County has had to operate without an Election Commission."

Old news to your LakeCountyEye.

"Now the Aurora Election Commission," continued Dr. Bhatschidtkhrazzi "has been threatening to relocate out of Kane County unless they get some generous tax concessions."

Your LakeCountyEye did not follow.

"It's that same old story you always hear in Lake County." sighed Dr. Bhatschidtkhrazzi. "Local taxing bodies pony up with generous tax rebates to lure some new hotshot tech-oriented concern into their community."

Your LakeCountyEye was not exactly sure where this was leading.

"There is a secret plan in the works," confided Dr. Bhatschidtkhrazzi "to get the Aurora Election Commission to relocate into Lake County. They've already been promised $2.3 million in tax breaks and other concessions."

Your LakeCountyEye was taken aback.

Dr. Bhatschidtkhrazzi sensed your LakeCountyEye's chagrin. "Do you know how many jobs an Election Commission creates? There are more than 400 election precincts in Lake County.  And every one needs election judges, poll watchers, tech support, ward heelers, you name it.  And these precincts are spread throughout the County.  It's estimated that an Election Commission would eliminate unemployment in Lake County. Totally."

Your LakeCountyEye regained enough composure to wonder who was going to pay for it.

"It will be self-funded." smiled Dr. Bhatschidtkhrazzi "Lake County has been lobbying Springfield to create a new kind of TIF district. This new hybrid TIF district would extend two miles in every direction from each precinct polling location -- and would tax only new, non-residential properties, mainly commercial and retail. The extra property taxes generated from the increasing property values would more than pay for an Election Commission. Booyah!"

Your LakeCountyEye heard enough. Did Dr. Bhatschidtkhrazzi have any parting advice?

"County officials wish to remind your Operatives that the 2015 municipal election is just around the corner. Vote early and vote often."

Monday, January 26, 2015

Your Tax Dollars at Work

Get dressed, get blessed, try to be a success.When asked for the secret to success, your LakeCountyEye always answers: Sacrifice & Hard Work.

Haha, j/k. The correct answer is: Move your company to Gurnee.

The News-Sun observed that ...
Gurnee area taxing bodies have been asked to pony up tax rebates to the tune of $2.3 million over five years to help bring the AKAHN Semiconductor corporate headquarters, tech incubator and manufacturing operations to the old Kenall facility in the Grand Tri-State Business Park.
Taxing bodies asked to pony up for tech firm eyeing Gurnee
Those taxing bodies included schools:
The requested 50 percent rebate on property taxes would total $172,000 for Woodland Elementary, $90,000 for Warren Township High School, $21,000 from Lake County, $18,000 from the park district and $10,500 from the township. The county also would rebate $500,000 in sales tax over five years.
Taxing bodies asked to pony up for tech firm eyeing Gurnee
If they teach Investing 101 at the Warren Township High School, this Daily Herald story from last week may be of interest:
Questions about the viability of a project touted by AKHAN Semiconductor -- a high-tech company being lured to Gurnee with millions of dollars in state and local incentives -- have surfaced in a complaint filed with a federal agency by a former Argonne National Laboratory executive.
Questions about AKHAN, looking to move to Gurnee, surface in complaint
Of course, $90,000 removed from any high school budget is a lot of money, even in the best of circumstances. To put that in some perspective, the Warren Township High School bully said he would need to steal a year's worth of lunch money before ever seeing $90,000.

That's all your LakeCountyEye has. Loitering between classes will not be tolerated.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Q the Eye/01.22.15


My name is Nicholas and I work at While researching Edvard Munch I found your post -- The Chicago Tribune Creepy Cartoonist™ Breeds the Screaming Memes. Great post, by the way.

I actually worked on Artsy's new Edvard Munch page and I think it would be a great resource for your readers. The newly designed page includes his bio, over 20 of his works, exclusive articles about Munch, as well as his up-to-date exhibitions -- it's a unique Edvard Munch resource.

Check out Artsy's 10 Favorite Screams to honor one of Munch's greatest works.

I'd like to suggest adding a link to Artsy's Edvard Munch page, as I believe it would benefit your readers.

Please let me know if you have any questions or suggestions on how we can improve the page. I'd also love to stay in touch about future opportunities.

Dear Nicholas, Ὥρος Hōros

Your LakeCountyEye is happy to oblige anyone with a bitchin mononym. Readers of this blog, however, want to know: Who in the vorld is Edvard Munch?

Your LakeCountyEye launched an exhaustive, in-depth investigation and came up with a couple good Google hits. Did you know that Edvard Munch is the fellow who drew that famous Scream picture?
Also, did you know that Edvard Munch is regarded somewhat as the Zeppo Marx of the art world? He was overshadowed by his three, more successful, siblings -- Simon, Theodore & Alvin Munch:
This isn't to say that Munch's heirs have done badly for themselves -- they were farsighted in granting licenses to their brand:
As to your requests, it is the policy of this blog not to post complimentary links to other websites -- at least not without adequate remuneration. Contact you LakeCountyEye for a rate-card today. Be sure to ask for the goofy-named-website discount!

If you are an elected official, or a previously elected official, or just a private citizen under indictment, send your political questions to Q the Eye c/o ...

Monday, January 19, 2015

They Got the Guns But We Got the Guns

Peace in Our Time When it comes to concealed carry Lake County is outgunned. At least according to statistics released by the Illinois State Police. Their report, per the Daily Herald, says ...
Cook County accounts for the most active concealed carry permits with 23,921. The report doesn't distinguish suburban Cook County from Chicago. Will County follows with 6,134 active concealed carry applications. DuPage falls third in the suburbs with 5,577. Lake County saw 4,252 active concealed carry applications in 2014, followed by Kane County with 2,873. McHenry County rounds out the suburban list with 2,555 applications.
Concealed carry applications fall far short of projections
To help explain these numbers, your LakeCountyEye contacted the only straight shooter with the straight dope on concealed carry, Dr. I.M. Bhatschidtkhrazzi, Professor of Suburban Warfare at the College of Lake County.

"These are alarming statistics." Dr. Bhatschidtkhrazzi threw down the report. "Lake County has a population of just over 700,000.  With 4,252 concealed carry permits, that means you have to round up 165 men, women and children in Lake County before you will find someone carrying a concealed weapon."

A tall order, indeed.

"By comparison," continued Dr. Bhatschidtkhrazzi, "McHenry County's population is somewhat above 300,000 -- but they have 2,555 permits for concealed carry. Which works out to one weapon per every 121 persons in McHenry County. These are not healthy numbers."

Not healthy?

"It's simple math." Dr. Bhatschidtkhrazzi pulled out a slide-rule. "165 minus 121 equals 44. That means in every shoot-out between someone from Lake County and someone from McHenry County, there are 44 innocent bystanders from Lake County who will not be carrying a weapon. I hope your health insurance is paid up. Everyone knows how trigger-happy they are over in McHenry County."

Your LakeCountyEye had to concede the point. Even so, to illustrate his case Dr. Bhatschidtkhrazzi produced a recent Tweet ...
McHenry County Right to Carry Association Outlines Spring Plans
"Our alarming pistol gap has not escaped the attention of the Lake County bigshots." he said in a conspiratorial tone. "Plans are already in the works to get Lake County better weaponized."

A Pistol Gap?

"Anyone who lives near the border knows what I'm talking about." confided Dr. Bhatschidtkhrazzi. "Suppose McHenry County decides to mobilize along its eastern border -- BOOM all of a sudden you have on your hands a Cuba Township pistol crisis."

A Cuba Pistol Crisis?

"I know what you are thinking." squinted Dr. Bhatschidtkhrazzi. "Why doesn't Lake County build a defensive shield instead? Well do you have any idea how much a Kevlar Wars type of Pistol Defense System will cost?"

Your LakeCountyEye heard enough. Was there any parting advice?

"Tell your Operatives that a well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed!"

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Guantanamo: A Persistent Legal Stain on the American Justice System

Adlai Stevenson Center on Democracy
Distinguished Chicago lawyer Lowell Sachnoff will discuss ways in which President Barack Obama could close the Guantanamo facilities before his second term ends in two years. Since 2002, when the United States military went into Afghanistan after the September 11, 2001 terrorists attacks, more than 775 men have been held for various periods of time at the prison. Several have died in captivity; many have been returned to their home countries or other nations; and many remain at the prison without any charges having been filed against them.
  • Sunday
    January 25, 2015
    2:00 pm
  • The Stevenson Center on Democracy
    25200 N St Mary's Rd
    Mettawa (Libertyville), IL 60048
    773- 281-0378
  • Admission: $15

Friday, January 16, 2015

So Sewer Me

Like we say in the sewer: "Time and tide wait for no man." As sure as the tide goes in the tide goes out, the on-again-off-again Lake County sewer line to a Grayslake truck terminal is on again. On-Again in the sense that it is a done deal. The News-Sun says ...
Opposition from municipalities in central Lake County wasn't enough to stop the County Board from voting Tuesday, Jan. 12, to approve a sewer line for property that Grayslake officials are looking to develop as a trucking terminal.
Lake County OKs sewer service to controversial trucking hub proposal
The sewer line, needed for a proposed truck terminal near Mundelein, is so unpopular that County Board Chairman Aaron Lawlor tried to sneak it through a special County Board meeting, called last December:
Lake County Board's trucking proposal hearing questioned
Lawlor, for the record, is the noted star of the local cable series ...
Lake County’s Dirty Jobs
which showcases some of the dirty jobs performed by the Lake County government. Lawlor was most recently in Vernon Hills, shoveling sewer sludge at a wastewater treatment plant:
Lake County Board Chairman Lawlor gets dirty for new cable TV program
What's up next? The uninformed sources say filming has already begun on a new Lake County Dirty Jobs video: Look for Lawlor digging a sewer line from the Lake County Central Permit Facility in Libertyville to a new truck terminal in Grayslake.

That's all your LakeCountyEye has. Please evacuate immediately. Or get off the pot.

Monday, January 12, 2015

The Global Optimum

Mark Kirk -- the only US Senator living in Lake County -- shot off his mouth last week. Kirk told a reporter at the E&E Daily that global warming isn't caused by greenhouse gas emissions. To prove it, he cited Greenland as evidence, stating that Greenland was green back in the day of Leif Erikson, which coincided with a period of exceptional planetary warmth known as the global optimum.

Kirk now is backpedaling from these comments. The Chicago Tribune reports that ...
After criticism from environmental groups, Sen. Mark Kirk said Thursday that climate change is real and human activity contributes to it.
Sen. Kirk clarifies view on climate change
Kirk did not backtrack on his claim that Greenland was green in the time of Lief Erikson, some 1,000 years ago -- during a period known as the global optimum, a time of climate warming. For the record, Greenland has been covered by an ice sheet for 110,000 years. Additionally, global optimum is not a term of climate science, and it is unknown what Kirk meant by it.

Your LakeCountyEye will keep you apprised as further developments warrant. Until then, Operatives are challenged to match-up the individuals pictured below with a recent quotation of theirs:

Quotable Notables: Who Said It?

Grandpa Simpson
"Like the time I caught the ferry over to Shelbyville. I needed a new heel for my shoe, so, I decided to go to Morganville, which is what they called Shelbyville in those days. So I tied an onion to my belt, which was the style at the time. Now, to take the ferry cost a nickel, and in those days, nickels had pictures of bumblebees on 'em. Gimme five bees for a quarter, you'd say. Now where were we? Oh yeah: the important thing was I had an onion on my belt, which was the style at the time. They didn't have white onions because of the war."

Mark Kirk
"We had the previous warming period, which was called the global optimum, and the best way to talk about that is when Leif Erickson went west from his home, he discovered a landmass that he called Greenland, because it was," Kirk said after Senate Republicans' first weekly caucus lunch. "And that was called the global optimum, because the planet was much warmer. By calling Greenland 'green land,' we know that the climate has been changing pretty regularly within recorded memory."

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Ultima Phule

Whiskey Tango FoxtrotLake County US Senator and favorite son Mark Kirk may have changed the course of history this week. Kirk explained the facts behind global warming to the E&E News:
"We had the previous warming period, which was called the global optimum, and the best way to talk about that is when Leif Erickson went west from his home, he discovered a landmass that he called Greenland, because it was," Kirk said after Senate Republicans' first weekly caucus lunch. "And that was called the global optimum, because the planet was much warmer. By calling Greenland 'green land,' we know that the climate has been changing pretty regularly within recorded memory."
Kirk disavows climate change ahead of expected Senate vote
Your LakeCountyEye did some fact checking and learned that the Greenland ice sheet is actually 110,000 years old:
Greenland ice sheet
In comparison, if Leif Erickson (c. 970 – c. 1020) was alive today, he would be a sprightly 1045 years old:
Leif Erickson
As far as the global optimum goes, it's some mathematical thingy dealio:
In mathematics, a global optimum is a selection from a given domain which provides either the highest value (the global maximum) or lowest value (the global minimum), depending on the objective, when a specific function is applied.
Global optimum
How long has Mark Kirk been in Washington? He may be drinking the Kool-Aid. Or something.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

Scoop the Poop

The thought of slowly descending into the bowels of a sludge pit doesn't automatically bring to mind Aaron Lawlor. But it will if the Daily Herald has any say on the matter:
"A lot of people don't know what county government does," Lawlor said before his descent into the stinky pit. "By coming out and getting my hands dirty, I think we're showing them what Lake County does in a very interesting way."
Lake County Board Chairman Lawlor gets dirty for new cable TV program
Haha, Lake County Chairman Aaron Lawlor put on his protective gear and shot a photo-op in a Lake County water treatment facility. For those Ops with a strong stomach, here is the raw video:

Dirty Job
Lawlor will be starring in a series of educational videos, themed around the dirty jobs performed by the Lake County government. This is an apparent effort to raise the brand awareness -- either for Lake County government or for Aaron Lawlor.

Look for Lawlor to take on some of these dirty jobs, in the near future:
  • State Representative
  • State Senator
  • US Congressman
Dirty jobs all. But somebody has to do them.

Friday, January 2, 2015

99 Pennies for Your Thoughts

Your LakeCountyEye is betraying no secrets to reveal that the planetary odometer rolled over to 2015 on Thursday morning. Of course along with every New Year come the obligatory New Year's resolutions -- of which your LakeCountyEye has two this year:
  1. No More Recycled Jokes
  2. No More Cheap Shots at the Daily Herald
Your LakeCountyEye will keep a tally sheet and scores will be posted on Dec 31. Until then, the Daily Herald wants your input:
The Daily Herald considers its letters space to be a forum for unfettered community conversation. We strive to publish as many of the letters we receive as possible, with subjects ranging from a simple observation about life in a local community to a passionate discussion about controversial local, national or international issues.
Join the suburban conversation on our editorial page
Your chance to join the suburban conversation is just one click away ...

Join the suburban conversation on our editorial page
Note to Ops: Give the mailman your letter to the the Herald. A first class stamp is only 49¢.