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What to do with a broken Illinois: Dissolve the Land of Lincoln

John Kass's modest proposal for the dissolution of Illinois: Carve up the failed state and let the rest of the Midwest have it.

John KassContact Reporter

But our beloved Illinois has proved that it just doesn’t deserve to survive.

So why not let our friendly neighbors like Indiana, Wisconsin, Iowa, Missouri and Kentucky just take the parts they want?

As you can see by the excellent “Kevorkian Illinois” map that accompanies this column, this plan is visionary.

The alternative is hell. Illinois hasn’t had a state budget for years. The state continues to spend money it doesn’t have, and the state’s credit ratings have dropped, increasing the cost of borrowing more money we don’t have to keep the rotten shebang going.

Bills pile up; Moody’s Investor Service says taxpayers are on the hook for $251 billion in unfunded public union pension liabilities.

Boss Mike Madigan, king of the Democrats who control things, wants tax increases but no real structural reform to bring stability to The Venezuela of the Midwest.

And the whispers of bankruptcy won’t help the average (remaining) taxpaying chumbolones like you and me who don’t want to leave our homes but who’ll get stuck with the bills.

Since our neighboring states are doing better, taking Illinois jobs and businesses and Illinois workers and taxpaying families, they might as well just take the rest of Illinois, too, dammit.

Wisconsin can have Chicago and begin calling it “South Milwaukee.”

Naturally, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel will fight this. He needs a job. And he’ll most likely beg his friends at The New York Times and the Washington Post to write angry editorials to save him. And these will be full of concern for the republic and those dispossessed Midwestern salt-of-the-earth taxpaying Americans, as if.

Sadly, Wisconsin probably won’t want Rahm, either. So to spare hurt feelings, I propose carving out 40 acres around the mayor’s home so Rahm might be prince of his own country:

Rahmonia.

And Cook County Board President Toni “Taxwinkle” Preckwinkle will fight it, too, so she needs something to soothe her ambitions:

A grant of land as large as a case of the soda pop she taxes, so that she might stand on it and proclaim herself Queen of Taxwinkletopia.

If there are portions of Illinois that the other states don’t want, they may be left as federal territory, a wilderness where only the strong survive and peasants and friendly propagandists kneel and beg for crumbs. You already know the name of this wasteland:

Madiganistan.

And in return for taking care of our politicians, Wisconsin will probably demand assets. Like the Milwaukee Cubs. The Beloit Blackhawks. The Sheboygan Bulls and the Fond du Lac Bears.

Indiana may want a large curvy slice of the former Illinois, so the state will be shaped more like a basketball. This will please Hoosiers to no end.

And Indiana also gets the Indianapolis White Sox and the hottest soccer team in America, the Indianapolis Fire.

Why not? Indiana is a great state, with friendly people and Mitch Daniels and Kilroy’s in Bloomington.

Iowa can have part of the west. Missouri may also get a small piece. Kentucky can take southern Illinois, considering many on both sides of the border share Kentucky DNA, as did Abraham Lincoln.

A colleague told me he had reservations about sharing Illinois with the Bluegrass State.

“I wouldn’t give Kentucky anything because A) it’s the South and the former Illinois needs to stay in the Midwest, and B) their state government is a mess, too, with a governor who refuses to talk to certain reporters.”

But beggars can’t be choosers. If Illinois is dissolved as planned, we won’t have a say in anything.

And though some in Kentucky might not respect “the media,” the state does have excellent bourbon. I would allow Kentucky to send me countless barrels of its fine sipping spirit so that I might hold it in escrow, to make sure everything goes as planned.

I promise to sip their bourbon and light a cigar, and hum a few sad bars from that song of the former Illinois that no one sings anymore:

By thy rivers gently flowing, Illinois, Illinois

O’er thy prairies verdant growing, Illinois, Illinois

Comes an echo on the breeze, rustling through the leafy trees, Boss Madigan has us on our knees, Illinois, Illinois

Boss Madigan has us on our knees, Illinois.

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