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The [Friday] Papers

Yes, this makes perfect sense. A couple years ago, union leaders held a secret meeting in order to determine how best to screw Chicago's poor African Americans. Out of that meeting emerged the big-box ordinance. "Let's threaten higher wages and better health care!" one union leader proposed, according to sources close to the situation. And their hateful plan worked perfectly until Super Mayor Daley of the Racial Justice League stepped in to save the day. Thank God we have the intellectual giants who make up the Sun-Times editorial board to help us navigate a complex world with reason and clarity.

Contrary Mary
Good God, Mary Mitchell, you too?

"If Daley is wrong about the union's motives," Mitchell writes, "then why wasn't this an issue when so-called big box stores went up in predominantly white areas of the city?"

I'm not going to even dignify that with an answer. The mayor is having a good laugh right now - at your expense.

Speaking of which . . .

Laughingstocks I
Is it true that the foie gras ban has made Chicago a national laughingstock? Eric Zorn does the work so I don't have to.

Laughingstocks II
The mayor's press secretary, Jackie Heard, whose salary is paid by the very taxpayers whom she is charged with spinning, says the foie gras ban "is not placing the city in a very positive light nationally."

As opposed to this. Or this. Or this.

Laughingstocks III
"I think that was one of the silliest, silliest decisions anyone made," the mayor said on Thursday about his brother and other top aides of his attending a fundraiser for his convicted former patronage chief Robert Sorich. Er, I mean regarding his rejection of police beat deployment that would move cops to where crimes occur. Er, I mean, regarding a new proposal to overturn the ban on the torture of animals to provide a delicacy enjoyed by a handful of rich people.

Laughingstocks IV
"Just think," the mayor says, "you'll go down every ethnic food in the city, 'Outlaw, outlaw, outlaw, you can't eat this, you can't eat that.'"

First they came for the Duckists, and I did nothing because I was not a Duckist . . .

Aflac Ghraib
It is gutsy, though, of the mayor to come out in favor of animal torture in an election year.

The Burt & Bernie Show
Ald. Bernie Stone (D-Bellevue) says the foie gras ban must be repealed in order to "restore our credibility."

Ald. Burt Natarus (D-Luded) says "I was also talking to a lot of animal welfare people, and they really don't think it is that much of a problem."

Daley Dose
"Now they realize that you can eat it at home. You go to a restaurant. You can't buy it, but they can put it on your salad. You buy the salad for $25, but the foie gras is not charged. Does that make any sense?"

Um . . . no. I have no idea what you're saying.

Breaking News
In a break with traditional journalism values, Sun-Times news reporter Shamus Toomey also works part-time for the paper's marketing department - and for no extra pay. Today, Toomey's extracurricular press release "Bears Mini-Footballs Debut: Sun-Times' Latest Collectible Series Features '06 Team" appeared in the paper under the section label "News" in an effort to fool readers into thinking they were reading an actual news story. Sources say Sun-Times reporters from now on will be called advertorialists.

Also, at an upcoming panel Toomey and his editors will discuss the formative journalism training they received at the Mayberry Post.

News Break
"Bears Mini-Footballs Debut."
- 528 words, page 14

"Media Ownership Study Killed, Ex-FCC Lawyer Says"
- 251 words, page 22

Cattle Prod
"Electric Bills To Soar: 25% Jump Estimated As A Result Of Illinois' 1st-Time Power Auction."

The added revenue will go to pay for ComEd's recent ad campaign warning of higher rates.

The Market Works
"When deregulation was contemplated in the 1990s, regulators believed competition from providers of electricity would drive down prices for consumers," the Tribune reports. "But that competition to sell power directly to consumers never appeared, and the auction was chosen by regulators in the hope of obtaining the cheapest electricity possible."

Apparently re-regulation wasn't considered. Nor was eBay.

Futile Resistance

I don't think it would violate my self-imposed moratorium to point out that a reader sent me this link, perhaps in order to test my resolve.

Rock Block
"Every time Gilby Clarke or Jason Newsted would wax philosophical about songwriting and vocal performance, I just had to giggle," Tribune TV critic Maureen Ryan writes. "I mean, who are these guys to dispense advice on . . . anything? Clarke's most famous for being fired from Guns n' Roses, and Newsted was in Metallica . . . for a while."

Fourteen years! In one of rock's most influential & popular bands!

- Tim Willette

Watching The Watcher
We're better.

The Real Meaning of 9/11
0.8181818181818181818181818181818181818181 . . .

- Tim Willette

Gas Tax
"After a summer of sky-high oil prices at or well above $3 per gallon, the trend is reversing course," the Tribune reported this week. "Gas is now about 45 cents per gallon cheaper on average than a month ago, bringing gas guzzlers out of the garage."

Huh. Did someone change the tax rate without us noticing?

In the Reporter
* Tired of the foie gras fight yet? If not, here's a primer.

* Are the Bears the real deal? Track the hype all season in The Blue & Orange Kool-Aid Report.

* It is altogether fitting that the Beachwood's secret workplace affairs correspondence has already lost his/her job. It is also altogether fitting that Life at Work continues anyway.

* Catch up on your missed Papers and our fabulous Weekend Desk Report.

* We're still accepting money.

The Beachwood Tip Line: No one has to know


Posted on September 15, 2006

MUSIC - December In Chicago Drill.
TV - Don't Weaken Media Ownership Limits.
POLITICS - Another SRO Crisis.
SPORTS - TrackNotes: Mom.

BOOKS - How Stereo Was Sold To A Skeptical Public.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Chicago Footwork King's Bail Battle.

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