Chicago - Dec. 11, 2018
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Army Of Darkness
ElRey
5 p.m.
A discount-store employee is time-warped to a medieval castle, where he is the foretold savior who can dispel the evil there. Unfortunately, he screws up and releases an army of skeletons. (tvguide.com)
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The [Friday] Papers

1. Mental Illness Is A Death Sentence For Many In America's Jails.

David O'Quinn was arrested for disturbing the peace. His father pleaded in vain to jail officials for him to be given his medications for severe mental disorders. Less than two weeks later, O'Quinn died from a bacterial infection after his own excrement got into cuts that he received from being beaten and put in a restraint chair," the Virginian-Pilot reports.

Jennifer Towle was suffering from depression so severe she started eating a nail clipper, milk cartons and other objects while jailed at the Hudson County jail in New Jersey. After she died, an autopsy found about three liters of such material in her stomach.

People with mental illnesses in jails around the country are routinely dying in horrific ways and under preventable circumstances, a Virginian-Pilot investigation has found.

The country's 3,000-plus jails are the default treatment center for many. There is often nowhere else to take them.

The Pilot and students from Marquette University in Milwaukee tracked 404 deaths since 2010 in what experts say is the most comprehensive effort to examine what happens to people with mental illness in jails throughout the country. The findings were compiled using state data, news reports, existing databases and court filings.

The total number of deaths for the period is likely significantly higher than what could be documented through available records.

The same grim patterns emerge again and again . . .

2. Practice "Fearless Authenticity," Says Triathlete Siri Lindley.

Agree, but be prepared to face the consequences in a deeply inauthentic world.

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Also, it's easy, like so much advice, for a person of privilege to say that. In fact, that's the definition of privilege - "That's easy for you to say!" But everyone should be able to live a life of fearless authenticity. Unless they are fearlessly an authentic serial killer, but you get the point. For example:

-> California School's No-Shame Dress Code Empowers Students To Wear What They Want.

-> It's Time To Address The Hidden Agenda Of School Dress Codes.

Just for starters.

3. The Ugly Truth Of Ugly Produce.

Back in 2015 we at Phat Beets Produce received a curious e-mail from a "startup" produce company serving the East Bay who wanted to partner with us to "support the work you do."

As a non-profit dedicated to food justice, we work with small farmers of color and young entrepreneurs through a variety of youth programs and our small-scale "BeetBox" CSA - a community service agriculture enterprise that links local farmers to consumers in low-income neighborhoods. We were intrigued.

The company turned out to be Imperfect Produce, a business that buys up "ugly" produce from large agribusiness for resale at a discount through a subscription box program.

Three years later and with a 30% drop in customers at our Beet Box CSA, we realized that we were being out-competed by a startup with a glitzy marketing campaign and venture-capital funding. This corporate-supported agriculture was avidly commodifying agribusiness's food "waste" and had little to do with supporting the community.

Imperfect Produce entered the Chicago market last year; Chicago magazine published a brief promo declaring that "everybody wins" under its model.

Back to Phat Beets:

Our BeetBox CSA supports small farmers of color mostly farming under 50 acres, including a one acre youth farm at an Oakland High School. Before Imperfect Produce arrived, the BeetBox profits allowed us to supply produce to under-resourced neighborhoods, support free community meals programs and supply free fruit to a variety of youth programs. We provided food for the Self-Help Free Produce Stand, and a Rx Prescription Veggie Voucher Program at Children's Hospital in Oakland, as well as free home delivery for EBT/SNAP/food stamp customers.

Within months of its arrival in the Bay Area, Imperfect Produce fliers were showing up on our car windows, their outreach coordinators were pitching at community meetings, their Facebook advertisements popped up daily in our feeds, and they were edging into community centers we had operated at for years. Their marketing blitz paid off. Soon, their single use cardboard boxes began lining the streets on recycling and garbage days in the East Bay. We lost customers, a lot of customers.

Well, that's just the market, you may think. Let competitors compete! But it's not that simple.

Imperfect Produce claims they're saving the world by reducing food waste - and helping farmers by buying surplus "ugly" produce that would have been thrown out. Sounds great.

The reality is that this produce would have otherwise gone to food banks, to be redistributed for free.

As social safety nets continue to get slashed and incomes stagnate, more and more people are turning to these food banks to access this imperfect produce.

Imperfect Produce (the startup) is cutting into this same surplus, rebranding it, boxing it up in single use cardboard boxes and making a profit off of the desires of "conscious" consumers who want to reduce food waste.

I'm not an expert on this subject matter, but I know which way my instincts, honed by experience, tend to lean on this one.

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"Imperfect Produce is only able to make a profit by working with the larger global agribusinesses, not the picturesque small and mid-sized farms they project in their marketing campaign.

"They donate the 'leftovers of their leftovers' to non-profits and the very place that surplus produce would've gone to in the first place, food banks.

"The only thing the company has done is to fulfill their bottom line by creating another market for agribusiness' systemic overproduction.

"It's a clever money-making scheme, but it certainly doesn't help small, local farmers or address the source of waste: overproduction by industrial farms as they produce the 'perfect' produce sold in supermarkets."

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Also from last year: the Tribune's 'Ugly' Fruits And Vegetables Home Delivery Service Coming To Chicago and ABC7 Chicago's Company Offers Discounts On Imperfect-Looking Produce.

Now would be a good time to take a second look. Assignment Desk, activate!

4. Illinois Launches Investigation Into Chicago Archdiocese.

"The Illinois attorney general is announcing the launch of an investigation into the Chicago archdiocese," Church Militant reports.

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan said Thursday, "The Catholic Church has a moral obligation to provide its parishioners and the public a complete and accurate accounting of all sexually inappropriate behavior involving priests," going on to announce a probe into all six dioceses in the state.

Madigan made clear her move was prompted by the Pennsylvania grand jury report published last week, which revealed 300 alleged predator priests who abused more than 1,000 victims in six dioceses.

"We have reviewed the Pennsylvania grand jury report, which identifies at least seven priests with connections to Illinois," she said.

Church Militant adds this interesting though not necessarily relevant tidbit:

"Madigan is married to Pat Byrnes, brother to Detroit Auxiliary Bishop Michael Byrnes, sent to Guam to replace Abp. Anthony Apuron, who was removed in 2016 over allegations of homosexual assault of altar boys."

5. Bad Allergies? Ragweed Pollen Is Double The Normal Level.

6. Chicago Corn And Soy Markets Seeing Little Action.

7. Suburban Chicago Lake's Fish Kill Sparked by Weed Control.

8. Renthop: Apartments Are Unaffordable In More Than Half Of Chicago.

"Average two-bedroom apartment rents are outpacing household incomes in more than half of Chicago's ZIP codes, leaving families struggling to pay rent in neighborhoods all over the map.

"Of the 70 ZIP codes studied in a report published by Renthop this week, the average renting family in 40 of them is spending more than 30 percent of its income on its home, according to the report.

"The ratio of rents to incomes is highest in in the ZIP codes covering West Englewood, Kenwood and East Garfield Park, where median rent for a two-bedroom apartment is at least 60 percent of median monthly household income."

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"ZIP code 60616 - which covers parts of the South Loop, Bridgeport and Oakland - was listed as the city's fourth-least affordable, with a median two-bedroom rent of $2,025 and a median family income of $42,776.

"Suburbs like Glenview, Park Ridge, Mount Prospect and Orland Park were listed among the most affordable parts of the region, with household incomes generally between $50,000 and $70,000 and family-sized apartments renting in the $1,200-$1,500 range.

"But neighborhoods like Bronzeville, Uptown, Pilsen and Rogers Park ranked among the least affordable, as demand from new residents drives up rent for rooted families."

9. New State Law Has Craft Beer Owners Fearing For Their Futures.

"Brewery taprooms can now sell beer from other brewers."

Sounds to me like it's traditional bars that will be hurt, though, not craft brewers. Click through and tell me what I'm missing.

10. Touche.

Steven Tyler to Trump: No More No More Playing Aerosmith Songs at Rallies.

- Our very own Tim Willette responding to Thursday's 10th item.

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New on the Beachwood . . .

The Beachwood Radio Sports Hour #214: The Cubs Are El Mago
Strap it down for a rough - but possibly glorious - ride. Plus: Daniel Murphy Does Not Agree With The Homosexual Lifestyle; Michael KKKopech; Bears Media Talking About Practice; and Fire Fires Fans.

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The Week In Chicago Rock
Is in pre-production.

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ChicagoReddit

Took a picture of that one China Town apartment from r/chicago

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ChicagoGram

#wip #artisticbombingcrew #chicagomuralworks

A post shared by FLASH ABC MARS (@flash_abc) on

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ChicagoTube

1982 TV Special: The Blasters With Willie Dixon And Carl Perkins At The North Shore Hilton, Which I Believe Was/Is In Skokie.

* Tribune, 1985: North Shore Hilton Undergoes $2.5 Million Rehabilitation.

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BeachBook

'President Can't Be Picking Who Might Be His Judge' | #StopKavanaugh Meets #ImpeachTrump.

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Ivanka And Donald Trump Jr. Were Close To Being Charged With Felony Fraud.

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The Other '68: Black Power During Reconstruction.

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TweetWood
A sampling.

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The Beachwood Tronc Line: Resist.



Permalink

Posted on August 24, 2018


MUSIC - Who's Next In Chicago Rap.
TV - Tribune-Nexstar Deal Is Bad News.
POLITICS - Charter Schools Should Talk More About Racism.
SPORTS - The Ex-Cub Factor.

BOOKS - Wright Brothers, Wrong Story!

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Hologram Arcade Machines.


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