Phony issues on the ballot

Proposed constitutional amendments and advisory questions on the fall ballot exemplify this state's shallow and utterly cynical politics.

Voters face a long ballot this year when they exercise their franchise — state, local and county races, local tax referendums and five ballot questions put in place by state legislators.

Strict oversight on state hiring

A breach of trust in an important state department cannot and will not be ignored.

A federal judge this week made an obviously correct decision to put a monitor in place to oversee hiring at the scandal-ridden Illinois Department of Transportation.

Loudest are not the largest

After being pilloried for weeks, Chancellor Phyllis Wise wins one.

Recent meetings of University of Illinois faculty members, including those on the faculty senate, carried a flavor of almost universal condemnation of Chancellor Phyllis Wise's decision to withdraw a job offer to a former Virginia Tech English professor who tweeted himself into trouble.

Pull plug on new gambling

There is bad law and badly written law. Illinois' video gambling legislation is both.

A recent News-Gazette story revealed the extent to which video-gambling machines have worked their way into the fabric of Illinois, a significant contributor to the problem being a law that permits the machines in any establishment with a liquor license.

Looking out for No. 1

The perversion of public power in pursuit of personal interest can be very costly.

Government regulation is intended to serve the public interest, but it frequently doesn't — sometimes egregiously so.

Wasted energy

Lethargy has turned to litigation in what has become a battle to get state bureaucrats moving on the fracking issue.

It's been nearly two years since a bipartisan legislative majority passed and Gov. Pat Quinn signed legislation authorizing a new means of energy exploration in Illinois.

Bruce Rauner for governor

Illinois voters face a stark choice in the race for governor, embracing the policies that have failed in the past or going in a new direction.

One of the definitions of insanity is continuing to do the same thing over and over again with the expectation of different results.

Wayne McClain

Much-loved and widely respected, Wayne McClain cut a wide swath in basketball and life.

The Champaign-Urbana community and the larger world of basketball in Illinois lost one of its best people this week with the death of Wayne McClain.

It was stunning news, not just because of McClain's high profile but because few people knew of his illness.

Court monitor will end abuses

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.

There's no disputing the substance of the hiring scandal that's racked the Illinois Department of Transportation.

Ebola poses a big problem

Spread of the Ebola virus has federal health officials struggling to come up with new ways to stop its spread.

The ongoing fight against the Ebola virus is a struggle with the invisible, undetectable and lethal, so it's easy to see why federal health officials are trying to minimize the emotional response to this public health threat.