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Ben Joravsky Interviews by Dave Glowacz: 2008

12/18/08 “Out the Window”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Whether city managers monitor TIF agreements; where your TIF-sequestered tax dollars actually go; and why Chicago can't suddenly end TIF districts. Length 9.5 minutes.

12/11/08 “The Right Fight”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: The evolution of Ben's TIF explanation; why more Chicagoans don't sue to challenge TIFs; and why Gov. Blagojevich's transgressions don't hold a candle to those of Chicago government. Length 7 minutes.

12/4/08 “More Olympic Games”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: What Barack Obama's appointment of Lawrence Summers says about his fiscal policy; how Chicago's economy resembles that of Russia; and, will Obama control his lieutenants or vice versa? Length 8.6 minutes.

11/27/08 “Hot Seat”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: The difference between a voting plurality and majority; why a Green might succeed Rahm Emanuel; and how the U.S. Constitution lets someone from Cairo represent Chicago. Length 5.3 minutes.

11/20/08 “The Chickens Outfox the Foxes”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: How the U of C takes its cue from City Hall; how the Hyde Park referendum fight used "the Chicago way;" and how reactions to the referendum resemble attitudes about Chicago getting the Olympics. Length 7.4 minutes.

11/13/08 “Yes, He Can”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: The only time a politician has outgrown Mayor Daley; Ben's therapy for power-fixated Chicagoans; and why Pres. Obama won't can U.S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald. Length 4.6 minutes.

11/6/08 “When the Slush Dries Up”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: The future of the Reader's print edition; TIF districts as borrowing enablers; and incentives for aldermanic subservience--drying up? Length 8.1 minutes.

10/30/08 “The Back-Door Plan”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: How zoning protects the citizenry; rezoning vs. variances; and a look at the members of the Zoning Board of Appeals. Length 9.9 minutes.

10/23/08 “The Mark of Madigan?”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Ben's NYC envy; whether term-limited office-holders would've leased Midway; and when people started making careers out of public office. Length 7.6 minutes.

10/16/08 “Easy Money”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: What makes 99 a magic number; the power (or not) of organized labor in Chicago; and why city workers at Midway whose jobs get privatized might stay employed. Length 7.9 minutes. • For the text of the state law that lets Chicago lease Midway Airport click here.

10/9/08 “October Surprise”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: How and why you might become a Constitutional Convention delegate; why you might wanna vote for the Con-Con; and Shakman's legacy. Length 10.1 minutes. • To find the Illinois General Assembly’s report on potential cost of the Con-Con (prepared by the Legislative Research Unit) click here.

10/2/08 “Get Off the Pot”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: The firefighter rebellion; dissecting the TIF take; and a great idea for county clerk David Orr. Length 7.5 minutes.

9/25/08 “The Endangered Watchdog”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Why Chicago has local school councils; how control of public schools became re-centralized; and your choice: democracy or oligarchy. Length 8.8 minutes.

9/18/08 “Daley Doesnít Need Him”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: A re-do on Rep. Skip Saviano; the subway station you'll never see; and pole-vaulting under Block 37. Length 6.6 minutes.

9/11/08 “Itís Not Illegal to Be Obnoxious”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: What, exactly, the Chicago Plan Commission approves; Dave Glowacz's plan for plan commissioners' redemption; and Ben's secret way for residents to present their cases. Length 9.9 minutes.

9/4/08 “Hereís a Tip for the Defense: TIFs”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Why the governor won't mess with TIFs; why Chicago students can't compete; and how Chicago Public Schools will lose $1.7 billion. Length 8.9 minutes.

8/28/08 “It's the Mayor, Stupid”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: When off-the-books tax revenues exceed on-the-books revenues; the city's corporate budget as a distraction from its other budgets; and why Ald. Tom Allen bears watching. Length 9.1 minutes.

8/14/08 “An Artificial Battle”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: The vulnerability of park permit holders; how Ben avoids virtual censorship; and why Ben sleeps well at night. Length 6.5 minutes. • To see photos click here

8/7/08 “Three Million Lawsuits Oughta Do It”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: For residents who might want to take the City of Chicago to court over improperly financed development, Ben and Dave walk thru a list of potentially suit-winning properties. Length 10.1 minutes. • To see photos click here

7/31/08 “Endless War”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: How public schools deprive the public of public space; why the Park District would violate its vendor policy; and how to have healthy debate in your ward. Length 7.8 minutes.

7/24/08 “Magic Beans”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: How the owners of Michael Reese Hospital snagged a sweet selling spot; the TIF two-fer; and the benevolent-rich-people myth (AKA the Millennium Park strategy). Length 8.1 minutes.

7/10/08 “Seize the Moment”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: The astounding depth of Olympics opposition; the Olympics as fuel for a real-estate boom; and the Olympic development that'll happen regardless of the Olympics. Length 7.1 minutes.

7/3/08 “The Dead Zone”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Chicagoans' immunity from trespassing in the Dead Zone; how Mayor Daley undercut Bensenville residents' clout in the state legislature; and the demise of some of DuPage County's most venerable affordable housing. Length 9 minutes. To see photos click here.

6/19/08 “The Road to 2016”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Why Mayor Daley needed more than a slim majority vote on the Children's Museum; whether Ben needlessly dramatizes; and astounding aldermen denials. Length 9.4 minutes.

6/12/08 “Is Obama a Chicago Politician?”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Whether Obama needs Mayor Daley to win Chicago; the mayor's greater strength—patronage army or voter apathy; and corruption as a tourist attraction. Length 8 minutes.

6/5/08 “The TIF That Keeps On Taking”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Ben's confession and pledge; the fundamental Olympics question for Chicagoans; and how corporate leaders committed themselves to a lie. Length 8.5 minutes.

5/29/08 “The Mystery of the Construction Obstructionist”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Public-building development demystified; another way to keep public schools under control; and how alderman sign away their power. Length 8.2 minutes.

5/15/08 “A Commission of Puppets”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: The selective sight of lakefront protectionists; preparing for indictment of the mayor; and Bush's payback to the Daleys. Length 10 minutes.

4/24/08 “Worse Than We Thought”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Better soccer-field sites than Lincoln Park; why the end doesn't justify the means; and the latest on residents' litigation. Length 9.3 minutes.

4/17/08 “A City Off Track”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Background on a mayoral ally; Ben's great disappointment with bicycling advocates; and whether the press should count student murders. Length 7.1 minutes.

4/10/08 “Apparently Money Does Grow on Trees”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: The single dumbest move the Park District has made; moving the Bears out of Soldier Field; and the recipe for rubber stamps. Length 7.2 minutes.

4/3/08 “It’s All About the Olympics”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: How citizens become robots; how a non-robot sees his role; and, can advisory councils survive a purge? Length 8.7 minutes.

3/13/08 “An Independent Streak”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: The wealthy—our feeble hope; why you should embrace entitlement; and why the ward map looks like a jigsaw puzzle. Length 9 minutes.

3/6/08 “A New Twist on an Old Trick”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Daley and Thompson's negotiations hidden in plain sight; if the public screams, the Board of Ed did good; and a look inside the bureaucratic mind. Length 8.3 minutes.

2/28/08 “We Might Take Your House”Click here to listen • [Article not available] • Description: The plan that doesn't plan; a TIF reform that Ben actually likes; and, did the alderman deserve a scolding? Length 8.8 minutes.

2/21/08 “Just Stupid Enough to Be True”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Winners of the Chicago citizenship award; how voting beats recycling; and Chicago elections—the new basketball? Length 8.7 minutes.

2/14/08 “The Mayor in the Mirror”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: The Block 37 debacle dissected; bonds better for building; and Alderman Ben and Alderman Dave's lesson in democracy. Length 9.3 minutes.

2/7/08 “The New School Shuffle”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: The roll call of abused schools; why city government hides how much revenue it needs; and Ben's perverse delight in reporting. Length 9.7 minutes.

1/31/08 2008 Primary Election SpecialState's Attorney: Read the articleClick here to listen (length 4 minutes) • Board of Review: Read the articleClick here to listen (length 4.1 minutes)

1/24/08 “Mell Family Politics”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Where to find the real dirt on candidates; whether back-room drama trumps voting records; and the big Chicago issue that candidates won't face. Length 9.3 minutes.

1/17/08 “A Good Day for the Rainmakers”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Why you don't need a TIF primer; how West-Side residents discovered a city slush fund; and why the city won't contribute more to the CTA. Length 9.3 minutes.

1/10/08 “Hear Ye, Hear Ye: King Daley issues his self-serving proclamations for '08”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Why news media fear the mayor; Ben's defense of the Sun-Times; and the silence of the Olympics. Length 7.5 minutes.

1/3/08 “A Zell of a Deal”Click here to listen • Read the articleDescription: Will the Cubs' owners get the same (huge) tax break as the the Sox' owners; the red herring of the Cubs' threat to move; and what Mayor Daley really wants. Length 9.3 minutes.