I wrote about this in a long line of things and wanted to give it a separate listing.
When did a whole bunch of liberals (Southern Illinois liberals are different though) start complaining about a youth work program? Really, we shouldn't call these people liberals, we should call them "Sheila supporters." You know that I think it could have been done more efficiently by using private industry instead of the public sector, but the "Sheila supporters" don't care about that anywhere else.
I was talking to my Mother last night and asked her what she thought. She said the program cleaned up the "community park" (open lot that is unbuildable at the weird corner of Walkup and Valley) in their neighborhood. A number of years ago, someone bought it and fixed it up. I think the owners have gotten older and don't have the energy to keep it as fixed up anymore.
As many of you know, there are a whole lot of young people in Carbondale who have never had a real job. When you employ them for the Summer, you keep them off the streets and out of trouble. In addition, you build them a resume so they can get a job somewhere else. Several young people were given a chance to step up and become leaders of little groups. This builds their self esteem.
I have heard the complaints that this program only helped the slumlords. I only know of one person/company that I consider a slum lord in town. I know a whole bunch of people who have rental properties in town. For example, John Rendleman is running rental properties these days, he is a slum lord? The Bryant Brothers are another example. I own a couple of commercial buildings. Maybe the definition of slumlord is anyone who owns property beyond their house, if you don't?
It amazes me that the same people who want to build a super expensive outdoor pool are complaining about a summer work program. You guys going after the Boys and Girl's Club next?
It seems what this is really about is that Brad has done a really good thing for the poor and disadvantage people of Carbondale and Sheila and her gang are trying to marginalize it. Part of their normal smear campaign tactics I guess? Now if they wanted to say it was a great idea, to needs to be run a little differently next time, that sounds like a reasonable argument.
I just can't believe that anyone who claims to be liberal would complain about this. Haven't they seen the state of our schools? Haven't they seen the test scores of the poor people in District 95? Don't they realize that SIU students take the entry service jobs in town, leaving nothing for the poor high school kids?
This program is a grand slam, home run on Brad's list of accomplishements. If Sheila had thought of it, the same "Sheila supporters" would be ordering her a trophy. On the other hand, since Sheila has accomplished nothing for the last 4 years and has nothing much to add, beyond smear tactics, to improving Carbondale, I guess this shouldn't be a surprise.
Didn't anyone think about this stuff before they published Sheila's campaign platform? I guess they thought that their spin of Brad's accomplishments into liabilities would be a good idea. No big deal to lie in a campaign.
Anyone want to go on record as being against a summer work program for minority and poor youth? Anyone want to supply some ideas about how it could be better next time?