Larry Rice of the New Life Evangelistic Center in St. Louis is still trying to seal the deal on the old YMCA. He would rather have the city give it to him for free instead of allowing a developer to rehab it and use it for a meaningful purpose that will bring the city money and provide employment. This is typical of Rice. He tried to stop the Rams from building a stadium and tried to stop the new Busch Stadium, too. Please be aware that direct mailings are going out fro Rice asking for the public's support.
Keep pensions here
Recently, a friend who is a retired state of Illinois employee decided to move to Florida. When I asked if it was for the sunny climate, he told me it was because Florida doesn't have a state income tax. That's no different than having an offshore account to avoid paying taxes. I propose that if you receive a pension from Illinois, you should have to pay income taxes on it to the state. If you move to a state like Missouri that charges more, you don't have to pay anything to Illinois. As we heard in the election, if you move your money offshore, you are unpatriotic. Well, moving to a state that doesn't collect income tax when you made your pension off the income tax of others is actually worse.
Blame gas on Bush?
I just paid nearly $4 a gallon for gas. I thought high gas prices were President George Bush's fault and that he was raising the prices for his crony oil men. What's the excuse now? Where's our president on this issue? Golfing? Oh, I forgot. He doesn't have to buy gas. He flies on our dime.
Get back to 'can do'
We used to be a "can do" nation. Now we're a "what can you do for me" nation. We need to go back.
War on terror at home
Based on all the recent gang-related murders in Chicago, maybe it's time that national war on terror starts targeting street gangs. Congress should spend more time studying the real problems and not the right-to-carry laws that are affecting upstanding patriotic citizens.
License for mayhem
So you can now take a Saturday class at Southwestern Illinois College and, without firing a single shot, be qualified to carry a concealed firearm. I think it would be useful if the BND would publish a list of sites that sell bulletproof body armor since this will come in handy when someone decides to cut loose at the mall on a purse snatcher or someone else at the local tavern in a drunken rage empties his clip.
Private cuts already
It's interesting to see the grandstanding by U.S. Rep. Bill Enyart and Sen. Dick Durbin about the sequestration that will cost some jobs at Scott Air Force Base. What I don't understand is why there is no concern about the millions of non-government employees, like teachers and people in the private sector. These politicians should show the same concern for people who are affected with furloughs every day who work outside government jobs.
Judge by experience
How can the NAACP be upset about the lack of black judges? I thought they didn't want to be known for skin color. I don't care who the judge is as long as he is best qualified for the job. Skin color should not matter. Only justice should matter.
Justice is colorblind
Regarding the lack of appointment of black judges, wasn't Johnny Scott one of those who pushed for not showing race on applications? When should race be so important in qualifications? Shouldn't judges be appointed based on their record, no matter what color they are?
Wait for Obamacare
I read about the 90 medical procedures they have decided are unnecessary or too expensive. Wait until Obamacare kicks in and we'll probably see 1,090 procedures that are in that category when the bureaucrats start making those decisions. People have no idea what they've gotten themselves into.
Two wrongs now
What former Madison County Treasurer Fred Bathon did -- rig the delinquent tax sales -- was downright wrong. But it is even more wrong that there is a lawsuit in the name of the homeowners against the county. Only one person will profit from this lawsuit and that's the lawyer. If the homeowner is awarded a judgment, where does the money to pay them come from? It comes from the taxpayers, including themselves. Those people are suing themselves and other homeowners because of something a crooked politician did.
Lessons in parenting
In response to Matt Hawkins' ludicrous letter demanding legal education begin in schools as early as sixth grade, it is clear that he is either delusional or in denial. If these individuals are truly unaware that it is wrong to kill, steal, lie, etc., what they really need is quality parenting. This isn't a question of education from the schools, it's a question of simple moral values that should have been instilled through their parents. Stop expecting our schools to parent the students. As far as education in the law goes, I believe the Ten Commandments pretty well covers it all. So, take away their TVs and hand them a Bible.
Spending it all
It has been a while since I worked at Scott Air Force Base but my friends who still work there tell me that not a lot has changed, and certainly not the ritual they go through in the fourth fiscal quarter every year. They push to spend everything in their budget so they can get a budget increase the next year. For example, they replace equipment rather than repair it so they can get rid of what's in the warehouse and exhaust their budget. If they don't, they don't get a full budget for the next year or an increase. So, the 10 percent reduction that will come from the sequester isn't an issue. It's something that should be considered every year to cut costs and save money rather than find ways to spend more money.
When I picked up the BND this morning, I expected to see a picture of the Nashville girls' basketball team on the front page of the Sports section. They are a small school that has come a long way after nine attempts to get to state competition. I was really disappointed in the way you handled it.
Is there a doctor?
If you are on Medicare, you better hope that your doctor doesn't retire because an increasing number of doctors are not taking Medicare patients. That's Obamacare for you. It promises to do everything medically for you except you won't have a doctor.
Save on police rides
I would have to agree with Mayor Mark Eckert's statement that the Belleville Police Department is a good department. But when you talk about what the department spends, most of the upper officers, chiefs, captains, etc., all drive large-sized SUVs. I don't understand why they need these big vehicles to drive around and take home, especially when you consider the price of gas. Why can't they drive the normal-sized police vehicles?
A bridge for veterans
I am in favor of the new bridge being named the Veterans Bridge for all the men and women who have served our country to keep us safe and free. They deserve this honor.
A temporary honor
Go ahead and name the new bridge the Veterans Memorial Bridge, but as soon as somebody like Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton or Johnny Scott dies, there will be movement to change the name of the bridge after one of them. It doesn't matter what they name the bridge now. It will end up being named after some radical bigmouth like these guys.
Tighten up spending
When are the local, state and federal governments going to live within their means? We wait until we have to kick people out of their jobs to do anything and the solution is to raise taxes. They need to do what every American family has to do and that is tighten their belts and stop spending. They spend more than they make. I can't tell my boss to double my pay because I owe too much money but they expect to tell that to the American people.
Stop signs preferred
I'd like to talk about the roundabouts that the Illinois Department of Transportation engineers are so proud of. Have they ever had to use one? My experience is that you sit waiting while everyone in the circle goes past you as well as everyone else who has entered at other points. They just keep coming. At least at a four-way stop, I get a turn. Roundabouts are a wonderful idea if you have no place to go.
Where did Illinois get the $2.8 million to pay for the 547 acres of park land? Was it from the $31 billion set aside in 2009 for pet projects? Shouldn't that money be used to pay our bills or be put back into the pension pot? One solution would be for all the legislators who voted to use pension dollars for other things to be arrested and jailed. After all, they misappropriated (or stole) those dollars. They will claim that it was done legally but all of them are guilty of dereliction of duty and misconduct. The best the voters can do is to vote the old bums out and get new blood in.
Stop playing politics
Caseyville Township Supervisor Bruce Canty and the township board should put a stop to Road Commissioner Dale Black using the resources of the township Highway Department to plow snow on private property. Black is doing this for the personal political gain of both himself and his father, Leonard Black. The taxpayers of the township deserve better.
Closing left out
It's funny that in Mayor Mark Eckert's newsletter he's always talking about the businesses that are opening in the city but he never talks about the businesses that have left like the pizza place, Harold Smith Pharmacy, a beauty salon on South Illinois, and Collision Plus on North Illinois. He always wants to talk about the good but not the bad. He must not think we need to know about those. Also, Belleville doesn't need a grocery store on North 17th Street and the Belt Line. We need something around the fairgrounds.
Costs in perspective
Run, don't walk, to buy the March 4 special report of Time magazine on why medical bills are killing us. Time devotes the entire feature section to a single story. The mesmerizing article repels, disgusts and angers, and not necessarily in that order. We know the system needs fixing. This article reveals how badly it's broken and why. It's not what you think and, no, it's not Medicare.
Grateful for food help
I don't blame the Sound-off caller who was upset that people getting food from food pantries wanted more than peanut butter and macaroni and cheese. But I want them to know that everyone is not like that. I have had to visit food pantries from time to time and I was very grateful for anything I received. There are a few people who are rude and don't appreciate what is given but most people do.
Assault on freedoms
Well, it did not take former Gov. Rod Blagojevich's buddy state Rep. Jay Hoffman long to show his true colors, Seems he and others like Rep Eddie Jackson cannot wait to take away some more of our freedoms, first cell phones, then what? Rep Dwight Kay jokingly says maybe dogs and cats from riding in your car, that is a distraction too. Unbelievable. These jokes of representatives are leading the most financially distraught state into bankruptcy but are worried about stealing your freedoms. It is all about priorities, right?