For a long time, I’ve wanted to write a letter to Illinois Times, expressing my gratitude for all the services provided to senior citizens in Springfield. For retired immigrants from St. Petersburg, Russia, such as my companion, Alex, and myself, the experience has been an unexpected and delightful surprise. Such gems as the Senior Celebration at the State Fair, activities at the Senior Center, the senior housing complex “Park Towers,” where we have lived for 17 years, are like a fairy tale.
Recently I received a letter from Norma Ralston, a volunteer who arranges bus trips for seniors to the Muni, that included tickets to Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat. The show and the transportation to and from the Muni were unforgettable. The ladies traveling with us were all in such a great mood that it made for a festive atmosphere. After the show was over, the performers introduced themselves and then said goodbye to us on our bus. I was so touched that when I got home past 11, I began writing this letter. I would like to give a special thanks to Pam Aymer, the director of elder assistance services, all the volunteers and especially Norma Ralston and Emmy Sanders.
The Teachers Retirement System is the major burden on the state’s pension systems. The State Employees Retirement System is not the burden. However, they are always drug into the rhetorical territory of “evil” and “unsustainable” pensions.
As is typically left out of media reports and opinions, the state legislators and past governors have diverted-stolen billions of the state’s contributions to the pension systems and that is the real sticking point in all of this madness. These thieves will continue to steal and take “pension holidays” while feathering the beds of their slacker constituents with more and more welfare programs for the growing numbers of poor and illegals that drain this state’s budget.
SAD ABOUT WUIS
I was telling a friend this morning about my difficulties in receiving WUIS over the past several months at my new position at work. I showed him my new antenna for receive and we discussed options. He dropped the bomb on me about WUIS changing formats [see “Changes on the radio,” by Scott Faingold, May 3]. He was as saddened as I was shocked. Guess I should have retired when Karl did. The only Internet option is my iPhone. Being in a metal warehouse I doubt a new digital receiver will work well.
I suppose every generation feels saddened when things change. But “talk radio”? That just leaves a dirty taste in my mouth saying it. I want no part of it.
I suppose I could just start hauling part of my several thousand LP collection to work every day and spin vinyl.
Jim Hightower goes after the Wall Street banks that “drained more than $19 trillion from America’s household wealth since 2007 and plunged our real economy into the worst financial crisis since the 1930s Depression” [see “Who needs Wall Street giants?,” June 7].
Of course, no fault can be laid at the feet of those who want what they can’t afford, put on credit what they can’t afford to pay for, borrow what they can’t afford to pay back, falsify and misrepresent their status to get what they can’t afford.
The demonization of all financial institutions associated with our failing economy while ignoring the government forces that feed the beast, reeks of “look over there.” And the sheep will go bahhhh because the shepherd tells them to do just that. It always has to be someone else’s fault for personal failures and the best way to support that is to demonize and make villains of those who provide the service that the “me-me-me” society demand.