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John Kass: Jessie Jackson Jr. Didn’t Read His Own Book “It’s About the Money!”

Posted on the 22 February 2013 by Real Talk @talkrealdebate2012

All About the Money!John Kass, columnist for the Chicago Tribune, wrote a superb column today.  It is entitled: “In prison, Jackson Jr. will have time to heed his words.”  I’ve always enjoyed reading his column, but I have to say today’s column was sublime.  As I read the article I immediately knew it was screaming to be covered on Real Talk.  Kass writes about the former congressman’s book “It’s About the Money!” released in 1999.  Jessie Jackson Jr. and his father, Rev. Jessie Jackson, wrote the book.

For those not familiar with Chicago politics, Jessie Jackson Jr. was a congressman from 1995 (when he took over after sex-offender Mel Reynolds resigned) until last year.  Jackson Jr. resigned from his position after it became clear the FBI knew of his misdeeds.  On Wednesday, he and his wife, Sandi (a former Chicago alderwoman), plead guilty to federal charges related to spending about $750,000 in federal campaign funds for personal use.  Some purchases include the infamous $43k Rolex watch he bought his mistress.  $7k for stuffed elk heads.  And over $600k in unreported income.  I guess we should be happy he kept it in the family.

Kass writes:

Our favorite chapter is the first, titled “Making Your Money Work for You Through Consistent Budgeting and Saving.”  It contains this fine line:

Don’t spend money just for pleasure, use it to build wealth and, in so doing, acquire power to manage and control your life.”


Rich people tend to have certain habits that poor people would do well to emulate.  For example, rich people understand that you shouldn’t fritter away your money on such baubles as cars and clothes which quickly depreciate in value.” 

Another sentence I loved was: “You need to pay your taxes, whatever your income bracket.  It is your civic duty, and it is the law.”

U.S. Congressman Jessie Jackson Jr.
Jackson Jr. stresses in his book that “living above your means is financial sin.”  I guess stealing tax-payer money allows him to abstain from sinning.  Who needs college when we can attend the Illinois political school for business?  I can see it now.  Former Gov. Ryan, former Gov. Blagojevich and Jackson Jr. can lead discussions as to how best to avoid sin and temptation.  I guess Jackson Jr. or his father for that matter wouldn’t be much help.  Of course they will tailor to devout Christians.  Why on Friday they will lead the prayer session in where each one expresses how they ask God not to be caught.

Our former politicians then could show their students how to properly budget; at the least the Illinois way.  Budgeting to them is spending more than a proposed budget, while simultaneously swindling tax payers of some more money.  What are a few more hundreds of thousands of dollars when the state already is heavily in debt?

For arts and crafts Blagojevich will teach you how to color your hair with coffee beans.  Jackson will instruct you that if things go south diagnose yourself with some sort of affliction.  Mental disorders are in vogue nowadays.  Just ask Judge Cynthia Brim who was reelected by Chicagoans despite her confession that she is insane.

I hope you all have a learned a very important lesson from Jessie “Jackass” Jr. (my friend likes to call him that) and company.

Don’t live above your means. 

Otherwise how else will politicians prosper?

*I’ve attached the Kass column.  If you have time I think you should read it.  There is also a 5-minute interview at the top of the page with John Kass.

Happy reading!


With Jackson now going to prison, maybe his wife and he can actually read the book “he” wrote.

And remember: It’s About the Money!

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Twitter: @adrakontaidis & @talkrealdebate

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