We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: It’s time for the governor to bring in all of the stakeholders—political, civic, business and labor—for a summit meeting, maybe at the mansion in Springfield, aimed at crafting a comprehensive, multi-year rescue plan.

That’s what former Gov. Jim Thompson did in January of 1979 when the Chicago Board of Education was locked out of the bond market and facing bankruptcy. Big Jim brought all the parties together, and they hammered out a multi-year rescue and oversight plan that no one really liked because they were all forced to suck it up and compromise. Bottom line is the plan worked—the school system was stabilized, a long-term financial and oversight plan was put into place and the crisis was averted. Call this is a lesson in effective leadership.

Maybe it’s time for another Springfield summit on the state’s current fiscal crisis. Big Jim might be available to help out if asked. Quinn could do a lot worse if he’s looking for a partner and bipartisanship.

> Nov. 16, 2010: Talkin’ lame duck on ‘BBM