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Justin Shimko is an award-winning writer and political analyst. He began as a reporter in his college days at the University of Oklahoma, writing for The Oklahoma Daily (rated as one of the best collegiate newspapers in the nation) and The Oklahoman, the statewide newspaper, winning awards from the CSPA and the Society of Professional Journalists. He later moved on to research and writing work for a number of political campaigns. His email is [email protected]

Radically Centered: Rauner Budget Begins New Tango in Springfield

The Rauner Budget Proposal has him and Madigan doing something Springfield has not seen in years: negotiate. by Justin Shimko Something strange happened in Springfield last week. While masses of Catholics, Lutherans, Episcopalians and many other Christians going to the lunchroom and local parishes to receive their ashes to mark the start of Lent, Gov. […]

Radically Centered: Adults Need a Snow Day, Too.

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Radically Centered: Adults Need a Snow Day, Too.

Hearing the words snow day brings joy to children all over the north, but it may be a way to reduce a prolonged problem with adults, too. By Justin Shimko Snow days for a child in Chicago must be an adventurous good time. I could imagine kids getting giddy at sleeping in, bundling up to […]

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Radically Centered: Redefining Poverty

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Radically Centered: Redefining Poverty

There will always be poverty people, but we seem stuck on trying to win an unwinnable battle. It’s time to redefine the fight. by Justin Shimko Last week, I laid out the fundamental problem with increasing the minimum wage. That concept, along with higher taxes for the rich and more economic programs that create negligible […]

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Minimum Wage increases won’t help the poor, no matter how high you raise the rate. By Justin Shimko The State of the Union, oftentimes the best and most-watched speech of the year for a President, is typically where we see new policy initiatives and a recap of previous ones, successful or not. What we saw […]

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Quinn No-Show Proves Sore Loser Label

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Quinn No-Show Proves Sore Loser Label

Quinn’s actions could be compared to the 5-year-old who fails to win at whack-a-mole at Chuck E. Cheese’s, only there’s no pizza around to dry his three-month-old tears. by Justin Shimko As Gov. Pat Quinn’s moments running the embattled and cash-strapped state died out, Illinoisans across the Prairie State caught a good glimpse of the […]

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From the Right: Charlie Hebdo and Censorship

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From the Right: Charlie Hebdo and Censorship

Islamists may have attacked Charlie Hebdo out of cowardice, but that doesn’t excuse censorship among news organizations. By Justin Shimko This morning started like any other for billions of people on this planet. This evening ended in tragedy for 12 in a Paris news office after terrorists showed their cowardice in attacking the Charlie Hebdo […]

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Corage: The Gift of No

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Corage: The Gift of No

Saying No is important. I’ll demonstrate that now. by Sally Eames I was going to write this week about the importance of learning to say no. Of how sometimes it’s necessary to release things, to refuse things, to let someone else have a turn. To say no so that you can create space for a […]

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From the Right: Christmas Lists and Thoughts

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Everyone makes Christmas lists this time of year. Here is my list to benefit everyone in Illinois…and a few back home. by Justin Shimko It’s that time of year where children are excited for Santa’s arrival all throughout North America and beyond. Parents, siblings, grandparents, and many others will be sending out their lists to […]

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From the Right: Remembering Judy Baar Topinka

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From the Right: Remembering Judy Baar Topinka

Illinois Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka was a true leader in Illinois, providing the blueprint for winning as a Republican in Illinois. by Justin Shimko The State of Illinois lost a fantastic woman early Wednesday morning as Illinois Comptroller Judy Baar Topinka passed away suddenly after suffering a stroke just the day before. The news shocked […]

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Corage: Breathing Space

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Corage: Breathing Space

Space to slow down and breathing is important, especially in the frantic holiday season. By Sally Eames This morning I slept in. I did it because I could. Fridays are my catch-up day and because I admit I really don’t work well before 9am. So I’ve built a schedule that includes evenings for work but […]

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