I try not to let John Kass get under my skin. I admire his background as a reporter and I think he turns a poetic phrase. But his overwhelming narcissism to fancy himself a political force unto himself combined with his currently zealotry to convince the national press that Barack Obama is not a political reformer because....because he's from Chicago! is getting ridiculous.
His latest column is a good example.
For the last, oh, three years, John Kass has tried to sully up Obama's well-deserved reputation as a force for government transparency because he is not waging a battle in the city council against (presumably) Mayor Daley. That's enough to make him borderline corrupt in Kass' columns. Helping to negotiate the biggest Illinois ethics reform since Watergate in his first few years as a state senator? No big deal. Moving the federal ethics law forward after the Dems cleaned up Congress in 2007, essentially on his own through relentless advocacy for greater transparency within the caucus? Whatever. Conceiving of and passing the most aggressive procurement transparency measure the federal government has ever done in partnership with a conservate Republican back when he was in the minority? So what? He endorsed Daley for mayor! So he must be corrupt!
I mean, if Barack Obama were an Alderman and wasn't vigorously pursuing out of some deference to Daley the exact same agenda of transparency and reform that he has successfully implemented in every legislature that he has served, then I think Kass would have a point. But, of course, he's not an Alderman. He's working on federal transparency instead of municipal transparency because, oh, that's his job.
I really hope Kass quits trying to connect invisible dots for other reporters in some vain attempt to alter Obama's well-earned reputation as a political reformer. It's getting a little creepy.