|Pop Culture Gadabout|
Tuesday, April 18, 2006 |
( 4/18/2006 01:35:00 PM ) Bill S.
"THERE'S NO GOVERNOR LIKE OUR EX-GOVERNOR . . ." – Well, former Illinois governor George Ryan (not Jeri Ryan's ex-!) has been found guilty on multiple counts of racketeering, fraud, cheating on his taxes and lying to the FBI. Be interesting to see what the two candidates running for guv this year'll try to make of the news: Ryan was a Republican, which runs counter to the long-running caricature of Illinois politics as a corrupt Dem-controlled system, though those of us who actually live here know that skeeziness has no strict party affiliation. Still, as more than one media observer has noted today, much of the mainstream media seems to've made a point of either burying or ignoring Ryan's party allegiances entirely. Anything to keep the political stereotypes intact, right?
Of all the aspects of the case against Ryan, perhaps the most damning was the fact that he presided over a system of where unschooled truckers were allowed to purchase licenses. Anyone who's been on the highway alongside an 18-wheeler that's being manhandled by some guy who appears to be auditioning for Duel 2 knows to be nervous about the prospect of an army of untrained tweaked-up truckers tooling around I-55. If there's any one misdeed that most sunk Ryan in the public's eye (Junkets? Who gives a damn about junkets?), I suspect it's this brazen disregard for driver safety. Blood on the Highway, indeed . . .