WALTER RUSSELL MEAD, October 25, 2012
Three states form the base of Democratic political power in the United States: California, New York and Illinois. All three states are locked in an accelerating economic, demographic and social decline; all three hope that they can stave off looming disaster at home by exporting the policies that have ruined them to the rest of the country.
Mary Williams Walsh, a talented reporter who is doing much to sustain the luster of the New York Times brand these days, has a must-read piece on the mess that is Illinois, and it is a compelling description of the misery and ruin that well-intentioned liberals combined with aggressive public sector labor unions inflict on the poor they ostensibly want to serve.
Reporting on a bipartisan task force report on Illinois’ grotesquely mismanaged finances, Walsh tells it like it is. As Walsh summarizes the findings of the task force co-chaired by Paul Volcker and Richard Ravitch: