Allegretti’s Version Of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell”


We’ve got plenty of bones to pick with apprentice Alderpuppet Frank Wsol (7th Ward), not the least of which is his flagrant, eleventh-hour attempt to undercut the citizens’ cop shop referendum with his own compound version that obscures rather than clarifies the issue.

But Monday night he was right on target when, in response to a motion to go into closed session to discuss the acquisition of land that may have been for a new police station, he stated: “This is a classic example of why the public doesn’t trust elected officials.” 

That is definitely one of many examples, Mr. Wsol, even if your pique seems to have been directed more toward defending your just-passed referendum resolution, which provided that the new cop shop would be built on land already owned by the City, than toward the interest of open government.  But we’ll still give you credit, along with regular Alderpuppets Rich DiPietro (2nd Ward) and Don Bach (3rd Ward), and open meeting advocate Ald. Dave Schmidt (1st Ward), in shutting down that closed session over the “yes” votes of Alderpuppets Jim Allegretti (4th Ward), Robert Ryan (5th Ward) and Tom Carey (6th Ward).

But leave it to Allegretti, Mayor Howard “The Coward” Frimark’s most dependable lapdog, to not only shamelessly vote for yet another closed session to discuss the City’s purchase of private land, but to blast the whole concept of advisory referendums that let our elected officials know in the most direct way and measurable way what the citizens think of a particular issue like the new cop shop.

Instead of considering the results of an advisory referendum as helpful advice from the voters to be used in making big-ticket decisions like the cop shop, Allegretti spoke of such advice as an excuse for elected officials to shirk their responsibility as the People’s representatives and simply do what the people tell them to do:

“It’s not binding anyway and we don’t have to follow it.  But it gives us a reason to not do what we’re supposed to do.”

If Allegretti is right (and, given his track record, we always hesitate when confronting that possibility), that’s not an indictment of the referendum process but of his fellow alderpuppets.  Because if our elected officials are worthy of the trust we have placed in them (another questionable proposition, to be sure), then they should be courageous enough to invite and welcome the voter advice that comes from referendums; and then, if they don’t agree with that advice, they should vote their consciences – and be willing to take whatever political fallout comes their way from doing so.

But Allegretti’s comments show that he subscribes to the “don’t ask, don’t tell” doctrine of shameless politics: don’t ask the voters what they think because they just might tell you shomething you don’t want to know – like that they don’t want to spend $16.5 million (which balloons up to $28 million when the bonded debt is figured in) on a new cop shop when our basements continue to flood, our streets are crumbling, and the City budget is already sporting million dollar-plus holes.

The “don’t ask, don’t tell” approach is a cowardly doctrine.  But what else should we expect from Howard the Coward’s lapdog?

11 comments so far

This is a wonderful post — well-written, thought through and above all true to the events of Monday night. I can only add this beautiful passage from the Herald-Advocate’s story just posted online: “…and Allegretti said the construction of a police station should not be decided by citizens.” Who watches the Watchmen?

Well…..let’s see….elected officials should be allowed to do the job they were elected to do without resident input…except when they don’t WANT to…then they call upon resident input via TASK FORCEES, to say….look over the tree ordinance, or deal with O’Hare, because….huh?

I guess resident input is a good idea… except when it’s not.

Yeah… and resident input is especially not needed during an election cycle… right Jim?!?
GFL you idiot.

More nonsense from Jim… from the December 13th Town Hall Meeting on ORD noise:

>> Ald. Allegretti reminded residents that they couldn’t rely solely on their Aldermen or the City to resolve this problem. To an extent, it needs to be a grass-roots effort. However, the Aldermen are fully in support of the group’s efforts. Ald. Bach reiterated, stating that the residents are the ones affected and the ones who have the most power regarding this issue.

So why is it OK for the citizens to organize on the ORD noise issue but not that of building a new police / “administrative” facility Jimmy???


Careful careful, you might make Allegretti’s head explode.

Or are you just returning the favor?

Allegretti, more so than the other alderpuppets, is just a mouthpiece for Frimark to speak without talking. Which is what we should expect from the guy who Frimark appointed to his vacant seat in 2005 – after Allegretti contributed $300 to Frimark’s campaign, and before he contributed another $200. Smells a litte funny, doesn’t it?

Persona non grata on 01.21.09 8:47 am:

“Who watches the Watchmen?”

The PublicWatchdog, of course!

Neither Frimark nor his Council stooges are willing to take responsibility for anything that goes wrong. Although at the last non-Council ORD-REST meeting, every statement Frimark made about what was being done to address the runway issue began with “I.”

Did anyone hear Jim Allgretti’s comment at City Council in regards to the bathroom situation at the COW meetings. Jim felt uncomfortable going into the public works locker room to use the mens facilities.

Afraid of the locker room? I bet our short little Napoleon was picked on in high school gym class. I can just see the short arrogant pip squeak getting stuffed in a locker!

Anonymous at 22:09, Don’t ever quote anything he ever says……..

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