"Extra! Extra! Read All About It!"
I hadn't heard that phrase in a long time, not since newspapers cut down on print runs and deliveries. I did hear it last night, right outside Ogilvie Transportation Centre. The Chicago Tribune was selling a special edition of their paper for twenty-five cents. I would have stopped and bought one, but the windy rain/snow mix made me anxious to get inside where it was calm, warm and dry.
The reason for the extra edition, as everyone in the USA knows by now, is that our Illinois Governor, Rod Blagojevich, got busted.
Last night, I could hardly get home to watch prime time TV, which is unusual. Most of the time, I can't find anything gripping to watch, but this story was riveting and unbelievable.
On the day before the Governor's 52nd birthday, Blago and his family were awakened early in the morning by the Feds knocking on their door (or maybe they rang the doorbell, I don't know). Anyway, he had just enough time to change from his pajamas into a running suit before he was whisked off to jail in handcuffs.
The charges are over the top. It appears Blago blatantly carried on illegal activities, despite the fact that our prior Illinois Governor, George Ryan, had already been convicted and encarcerated for illegal activies, and he himself was already under investigation.
Wiretaps reveal Blago, acting like he was on eBay or Craigslist, sought to auction off the Senate seat Barack Obama had vacated when elected President. Not only that, tapes reveal he'd threatened the Tribune Company to hold up the sale of Wrigley Field , the official site of the Chicago Cubs, if they didn't fire a certain editor who had written uncomplimentary articles about him. Also, it appears he threatened to withhold millions of state dollars for the sick children at Children's Memorial Hospital unless a donation was made to his fund.
Much of the language Blago used in his telephone conversations had to be bleeped out in newspaper, radio and television reports about the tapes. It appears, Patti, his wife, also adept at stringing together obscenities on tape, had some involvement, but as yet has not been charged.
The Feds listed a widespread corruption crimespree, described as a litany of greed, ambition and audaciousness. On the radio today, people are calling Blago a sociopath and other uncomplimentary labels.
His attorney says "The Governor believes that he didn't do anything wrong."
What would Blago consider wrong?
Will he be impeached? Will a special election be held to fill the vacant Senate seat? What will happen at the trial? What about his poor children? Stay tuned for further developments.
Wow, what a story. Too bad I hadn't thought of the idea first. It would make such a great plot for a book. I'm sure my book would have also been optioned for a movie.
There's still a chance for a movie. I wonder, who would get the rights to it? Who would star as Blago, his foul-mouthed wife, Patti, and their children? Who would play his potential victims?
What are your thoughts about the Blago fiasco? Who would you cast for the movie?