Saturday, August 5, 2006

Personal Asides: Bob Creamer, Jan Schakowsky’s Husband Went to Jail Last June 6 But, of Course, It Wasn’t News in Either of Chicago’s Dailies…Bruce Du Mont’s WLS “Beyond the Beltway” and Teri O’Brien’s Shows Reviewed



There was an era when a Member of Congress’ spouse going away to federal prison made news—but not at this time when the Congresswoman is one of the leading liberal Democrats in the U. S. House and a particular favorite of a mainstream media which blisters George W. Bush. It is not surprising that the departure of Robert Creamer, husband of Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky, gets no mention in the Sun-Times which is the Democratic party’s newspaper of record…but somewhat atypical that his imprisonment hasn’t been noted even in fine print by the Chicago Tribune. But then the Trib has been experiencing trouble trying to figure out what newspaper it is: a moderate one, conservative one economically, liberal one socially, with so much effort expended that it didn’t notice that Creamer is missing from the liberal politicking lineup.

No mention in The Reader but that’s not surprising since its politics, such as they are, conform to Schakowsky’s. Yet one would think that Mike Miner in its column “Hot Type” would have noticed. And surprise: no mention in the Evanston newspaper, the hometown periodical of the Creamers, er Schakowsky’s. Nothing in which covers political news like a blanket. The only public place this Blog ran into the story was in the excellent media review by Dan Curry. Then an associate called with a follow-up story that is fascinating.

First of all, Creamer is not exactly a faceless guy who just happens to be married to a high profile liberal-to-radical Member of Congress. He is, as every political analyst knows, one of the leaders of the left-wing of the Illinois Democratic party whose influence has reached far beyond the state’s borders. A dapper, neat, well-combed man who looks like a fairly prosperous suburban executive, he has been extremely…use of that word is advised…extremely active in fringe liberal politics in this state for a long time. He has appeared on this Blog’s radio show defending the left with adroit and spectacular (let it be said) style. Second, he put together an organization of grassroots liberals called the Illinois Political Action council which has sent hundreds and even more organizers throughout the suburbs and state to carry precincts for causes that range from hotly anti-business to left-wing social issues of many stripes.

As Dan Curry points out, it was Creamer (pronounced “Kramer”) who stood by Rod Blagojevich’s side to blast then Governor George Ryan for not doing anything to lower the price of gasoline during the 2002 campaign. Is it not an anomaly that major news organizations have neglected to report his departure to the federal prison at Terre Haute where he has resided since last June 6? But it is not just the mainstream media’s dereliction. Listen: this gets fascinating.

A close associate of this Blog tried to check the whereabouts of Bob Creamer, believing that since he was convicted of fraudulent financing of his lobbying firms by U. S. Attorney Patrick Fitzgerald, a record of his incarceration would have to pop up somewhere. Well, it didn’t. Fitzgerald’s website shows no information of the trial, conviction or sentencing of one of the highest profile liberal Democrats in Cook county. A search for Creamer via Google turns up the notation “no pages were found” on the Department of Justice website. He then made a few telephone calls including one to Randall Sanborn, assistant U. S. attorney and public information officer for Fitzgerald’s office. Sanborn said matter-of-factly that while they once had a piece about Creamer on the office’s website, they “could not possibly” make enough access for all the cases that come their way. Isn’t that interesting? In the case of one of the state’s most powerful liberals, the office’s resources just suddenly ran out of gas. And what a case it was.

It was a case that led none other than Abner Mikva, the former congressman from Schakowsky’s district, former Carter-appointed federal judge, former Clinton administration’s federal appellate judge, former Clinton administration’s ethics chief [sic] in the White House, to plead that there was a note of tragedy in Creamer’s conviction of manifold check kiting. Now we are told that the U. S, Attorney who could keep track of all the multitudinous documents involved with George Ryan’s conviction, the Stuart Levine trial and hundreds of other cases throughout the last few years does not have the capacity to keep track of the jailing of a liberal hustler and crook married to one of the most vitriolic and acid-tongued critics of the Iraq War and George W. Bush in the Congress. This Blog’s associate suggests that perhaps we could take up a collection to provide $25 for computer memory to allow the public access to information concerning the trial of the politically active husband of a prominent sitting U. S. Congressman…and then forward the information to the two newspapers in Chicago that so very tenderly decided to abstain from mentioning the embarrassing incarceration. Do you think it’s a good idea?

DuMont and O’Brien.

In the review of radio talk shows yesterday, this Blog didn’t mention Bruce DuMont’s “Beyond the Beltway” nor Teri O’Brien’s WLS program and we were called on it. Bruce DuMont who started this Blog in the radio business with a (*****) WBEZ public radio show has moved to WLS and is producing another *****. He is a multifariously talented man with an incisive knowledge of national and local politics who manages a great collection of guests with geniality and verve. The reason he wasn’t cited yesterday is that, like this Blog, he adroitly produces a balanced program of guests, not like Rush or the others who perform alone. But Bruce, a good friend, is the best. Teri O’Brien, a lawyer and rising commentator, is noted for her quick wit and biting repartee with guests and is fast becoming one of the best performers in talk radio who also deserves a ***** rating.


  1. Interesting about Creamer, & the news blackout. You hit the nail re Schakowsky too. Politically, Illinois seems more like Massachusetts every day.

  2. With editorial boards, radical 501(c)3s, University Centers of (Whatever is Not Shaving Its Legs), and schools of journalists farmed at those Centers, it is no surprise at all.

    How else can the Peoples Law Office (PLO)Andy Warhol's doppleganger be afforded a 'daily rant in both Chicago Dailies; Ald. Joe Moore not be the target of a contemporary H.L.Mencken broadside; Dorhn and Ayers be considered 'educators;' and voters not branded as cattle.

    Nonsense makes great news and no news makes great sense - to the Yellow-hammers of radical doctrine.


    You're right, only reference I could find to Creamer is the ABC story above from March of 04 when the charges were filed. I'll try to contact Meincke, the reporter of record, and see what he has to say.

  4. John Ruberry, Morton Grove, IL USAAugust 13, 2006 at 2:19 PM

    Tom....You'll recognize the last name, I'm the son of the late Jack Ruberry.

    Anyway, Bill is right, and I linked to his post, Curry linked to mine. (Dan's a good friend of mine.) Anyway, the credit for this discovery belongs to Bill Baar.

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