Engineers v. Consultants: Comparing Engineering Marvels with Political Failures

Let me start off by saying something that most veteran Illinois politicos will pretend isn’t true: If Republicans have a decent day here in the Land of Lincoln on November 8, that is by picking up legislative seats or gaining ground with vote totals statewide — the credit will belong to Donald Trump and not to the millions of dollars misspent yet again by the political consulting class.

There really isn’t much to be said here — it should be self evident — you know, like the truths mentioned in the opening of our founding document. In every election cycle, strategy and tactics are merely repeated. Conservatives still haven’t graduated from political communications elementary school.

This article was in the Chicago Sun-Times yesterday: “Top 10 contested state races each now have $2M plus war chests.” Look at the dollar amounts they report — and it’s an easy bet that the final totals will be higher:

Here are the top 10 contested state races and total money raised so far, via the Illinois Campaign for Political Reform. Incumbents are listed first.

  1. Comptroller, Leslie Munger (R), Susana Mendoza (D): $7.42 million
  2. House, Michael. P. McAuliffe (R), Merry Marwig, (D): $2.61 million
  3. House, Daniel V. Beiser (D), Michael Babcock (R), $2.40 million
  4. House, John Bradley (D), Dave Severin (R), $2.375 million
  5. Senate, Melinda Bush (D), Michael Amrozowicz (R), $2.3 million
  6. Senate, Gary F. Forby (D), Dale Fowler (R), $2.27 million
  7. Senate, Thomas Cullerton, (D), Seth Lewis (R), $2.083 million
  8. House, Sam Yingling (D), Rod Drobinski (R), $2.052 million
  9. House, Katherine “Kate” Cloonen (D), Lindsay Parkhurst (R), $2.052 million
  10. House, LaToya N. Greenwood (D), Bob Romanik (R), $2.045 million

The first one, for Comptroller, is a statewide campaign, but the rest are state legislative races!

Imagine if these millions were invested in effectively fighting the information war by using effective means of educating voters about the disaster that is Illinois government. Instead, Republicans and conservatives actually fund the liberal media by spending millions of dollars on ad buys that fail more often than not to inform and change minds.

It’s not complicated. The political left engages on all of the information battlefields — the political right relies mainly on campaign ads. The political left spends big money all through the year convincing Illinoisans that there is only one way that works: they recommend more money for everything the government does. The political right is mostly invisible, waiting instead for election season so they can send out more campaign mailings and purchase massively expensive media buys.

I made the simple point with the opening sentences on this page:

On the list of things that astound me are the difficult tasks that man can accomplish, such as building a skyscraper, putting satellites in orbit, and sending a probe to mars. Those things are difficult yet possible. I’ll tell you what’s not difficult: reaching voters.

Unless, of course, you’re a Republican or conservative political consultant.

Over at Digital Trends, Les Shu has a post up titled, “6 engineering marvels that tamed ‘impossible’ terrain to cut travel time.” Imagine if our political consultants were in charge of taking on those transportation challenges. When you look at the hundreds of millions of dollars spent by our side in Illinois during the course of the last several election cycles, it’s an easy guess how they’d approach them. They would be going around the mountain, not through it. To go through it would require something they don’t have: imagination and the good sense to do something different when the old methods are proven failures.

Here is Les Shu:

If a mountain stands between you and your destination, the logical solution is to go around it — unless, of course, you find a way to go through it. What seems like an impossible feat to the rest of us, it is merely a challenge for determined engineers. Had Joseph Strauss listened to experts who deemed building a bridge from San Francisco to Marin County was impractical, then the Golden Gate Bridge may never have been built.

By the end of 2016, it’ll be possible to travel through the Alps in a high-speed train, thanks to the opening of the Gotthard Base Tunnel. Not only will it shorten the trip for passengers, but make it faster to deliver goods. Like the Golden Gate, the Gotthard, along with these five other modern engineering marvels, not only cut down on travel time, but make it possible to get from one place to another — something earlier generations could only dream of. Here are six incredible recent projects that make traveling over land a little less daunting.

Read more: Digital Trends

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