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The [Friday] Papers

"In a city known for punishing mayors for their handling of snowstorms, Mayor Richard Daley was careful not to step in front of the cameras until the main streets were clear," AP reports.

"When he finally did Thursday, the mayor swiftly brushed aside any criticism of the city's response to the monstrous blizzard that created a startling spectacle: hundreds of motorists stranded overnight on the city's marquee thoroughfare.

"So far, few fingers were pointed at Daley, despite some inevitable second-guessing."


"Mayor Richard Daley emerged Thursday to praise the city's response to the blizzard of 2011, but only after Lake Shore Drive was reopened and his underlings had taken responsibility for the snowy debacle that left hundreds stranded for hours," the Tribune reports.

"In dealing with the blizzard fallout, Daley employed many of the same tactics he's used during past crises of his 22 years in office: Wait a day or two to respond to a tough issue, downplay the problem and then take some time to figure out if heads will roll."


"One day," said Daley. "I'm sorry. I love you. But not all of you were here, either. Let's be realistic. Come on."



"This is not The Daley Show."

Apparently unasked question: Mr. Mayor, is that a rehearsed line or did you just come up with it?


More important presumably unasked question: Mr. Mayor, did you at any time have a discussion with any advisor about not appearing in public in order to avoid a split-screen image of you and the paralyzed Lake Shore Drive being beamed worldwide?

Because we all know that's what happened. Come on. Let's be realistic.

The Daley Show
"Mayor Richard Daley's former Streets and Sanitation commissioner was sentenced Thursday to 21/2 years in prison for his role in rigging the city's hiring system, capping a lengthy federal investigation inside City Hall that embarrassed the mayor but left him largely unscathed," the Tribune reports.

Here's the important part:

"Former prosecutors said Thursday that they always hoped to learn more from Sanchez about the scheme but that he did not provide any information after they approached him in 2006 . . .

"On Thursday, Sanchez and his attorney only hinted at how far up the scandal went. The attorney, Thomas Breen, called the question 'the elephant in the room' and said people at City Hall knew of the hiring practices. Sanchez, speaking with reporters after court, said he believed Breen was referring to Daley."

Of course he was. Come on. Let's be realistic.


From the del Valle campaign:

"'It has come to light that not only does Rahm Emanuel take contributions from companies contracted with the City, but he has also benefited from the same patronage system which he talks about reforming,' said del Valle, who has long been a voice against patronage hiring in city government . . .

"Del Valle cited a Chicago News Cooperative report by Dan Mihalopolous stating that Emanuel used HDO's foot soldiers in his successful 2002 congressional run, as well as the patronage army led by Streets and Sanitation official Dan Katalinic, who admitted taking bribes in the Hired Truck scandal.

"Del Valle also highlighted some $10,000 in campaign contributions Emanuel has taken from attorney Ty Fahner and his wife, Anne Fahner. Fahner, since 2006, has represented Mayor Daley in lawsuits against the city claiming violation of the Shakman Decree. Nine other lawyers with Mayer Brown, the same firm for which Fahner works, contributed a total of $31,250 to Emanuel's campaign."

But I thought Rahm was a fresh start?


"In addition, del Valle discussed HDO's formation in 1993 under then-Chief of Staff Gery Chico's watch. 'Gery Chico needs to explain to the public what his role in HDO was, from its birth to present day,' said del Valle.

"Del Valle said Chicago's longstanding patronage system has cost the city 'millions of dollars in bloated payrolls, legal fees, and pension obligations,' and said the city's budget crisis 'stems, in part, from its corrupt politics.'"

But it's not The Daley Show. Let's be realistic.

The New Lake Shore Drive
Now with blizzard lyrics.

Non-Union Carolina On Obama's Mind
"In choosing Charlotte, North Carolina to host the 2012 Democratic National Convention, President Obama selected a city with no unionized hotels, a non-union convention center, and the least union membership of the four options," BeyondChron reports.

"Last October, UNITE HERE President John Wilhelm wrote a letter to the Democratic National Committee, stating that Charlotte's non-union hotels made it an unacceptable choice.

"Candidate Obama pledged to join UNITE HERE's picket line at Chicago's Congress Hotel if elected President - a promise he made no attempt to fulfill - but as President has increasingly courted corporate interests while ignoring labor's needs.

"While some attribute Obama's decision to the importance of North Carolina and neighboring Virginia in the 2012 presidential race, another factor could also be at play. UNITE HERE has been waging the most aggressive union campaign ever against the Hyatt Hotel chain, owned by the Chicago-based Pritzker family. Penny Pritzker was the national finance chair of Obama's 2008 presidential campaign. If Obama wanted to ensure ongoing Pritzker and corporate loyalty in 2012, choosing a city opposed by UNITE HERE and that only has non-union hotels sends a powerful message.

"As most labor union leaders continue to publicly praise President Obama, it's clear with each passing week that Obama feels he can actively court corporate America while taking labor support for granted. The President's choice of non-union Charlotte is the latest example, as even the conservative Red State blog observed that Obama likely chose Charlotte 'precisely because it is union-free.'"


The rest of Obama's presidency is going to be one long Sister Souljah moment.

Pappas's Perks
"[Cook County Treasurer Maria] Pappas once ran her office from a beautiful desk and credenza in her private office. But they were replaced with custom-ordered furniture costing $23,034," CBS2 and the BGA report.

"The furniture was part of a much larger redecorating job overseen by high-end interior designer John P. Regas. He was paid an additional $27,000 for his interior design work throughout the treasurer's office."

* "Is Treasurer Maria Pappas Wasting Your Tax Dollars?"
* "Treasurer Cuts 'Party Planners' In Wake Of Investigative Report"

Rejecting Chicago
New Haven police have no confidence in the Chicago troika at the top of their department.

Media Values
From Tim Willette:

Chris Matthews, sentimentalist.

Live on Scarborough. Re Mubarak:

"I feel shame as an American."

For propping up a murderous dictator for decades, right? Wrong!

"This is not how you treat a friend of 30 years."

Switching to Sanford & Son now.

The Week in Chicago Rock

They Want What We Have
Chinese Gossip Blogger Fights For Freedom To Post Celebrity Up-Skirt Photos.

al-Qaeda Mistakenly Bombs Pro Bowl
Loses street cred.

The Week in WTF
Including advice from Sam Kinison for blizzard whiners.


The Beachwood Tip Line: Go to where the puck will be.


Posted on February 4, 2011

MUSIC - Madonna vs. Moderna.
TV - Sundays With The Military-Industrial Complex.
POLITICS - Private Equity In The ER.
SPORTS - Suspicious Betting Trends In Soccer.

BOOKS - China Holding Swedish Publisher.


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