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General News    H3'ed 3/26/11

Will Rahm Emanuel Misunderestimate "ChicagoSpeak"?

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Message Martha Rosenberg
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Chicago, Il

 

Chicago mayor-elect Rahm Emanuel is known as a hardball player who is never off message. But in Chicago, his articulateness may be, well, disorientating.

 

In the city that has had a Mayor Daley for so long people think it is the name of the office -- "who's your Mayor Daley?" they ask -- tree is still the number that comes after two and orientate is a treasured verb.

 

Outgoing Mayor Richard M. Daley's father Richard J. Daley is remembered for his promise that, "We shall reach greater and greater platitudes of achievement," and assuring the public after the 1968 Democratic National Convention violence that, "The policeman isn't there to create disorder; the policeman is there to preserve disorder."

 

And son Richard M. Daley is known for meandering 90-second audio bytes that change verbs, tenses, subjects, stances, moods and pitch -- his voice rising with Vegas-like glissandos until he is an actual soprano -- that resemble Method acting.

 

When asked in the 1990's if the General Assembly would approve a domed stadium near the convention facility McCormick Place, Daley replied, "I don't think they can do it. Maybe the governor can. Maybe there's something down his sleeve. I want to look down there. I look down there a lot. There's nothing down there."

 

Asked about the national debt, he said about the federal government, "Standard and Poor's or Moody should grade them just like me. Otherwise we're saying to our parent corporation, 'Do anything you want.' What happens is a parent corporation does it, and then we all follow. They're in debt; we go in debt. Who cares? And that's what is wrong with America."

 

Nor was a quote about state funding any clearer. "The state of Illinois funds those centers. We did not cut. They have cut state mental health facilities all over the state. That is state money. Underline that. S-A-T-E money. It's called state money. "" said Hizzoner.

 

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Martha Rosenberg is an award-winning investigative public health reporter who covers the food, drug and gun industries. Her first book, Born With A Junk Food Deficiency: How Flaks, Quacks and Hacks Pimp The Public Health, is distributed by Random (more...)
 

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