The [Friday] Papers
Is there an honest man in the land?
1. "Mayor Daley's son Patrick had a hidden interest in a sewer-inspection company whose business with the City of Chicago rose sharply while he was an owner," the Sun-Times reports in an exclusive.
"Patrick Daley invested in Municipal Sewer Services in June 2003, along with Robert Vanecko, a nephew of the mayor. The pair cashed out their small investment about a year later, as federal investigators were swarming City Hall in the early days of the Hired Truck Scandal.
"Municipal Sewer Services had partnered with a Hired Truck company in the sewer-cleaning program."
That sounds about right.
"Mayor signed pacts, but spokeswoman says he didn't know his son was an owner of a sewer-inspection business that did city work," the paper states.
Of course, the mayor himself wasn't available for questions such as:
A) Would you be willing to repeat that under oath?
2. "Christopher G. Kelly, one of Gov. Rod Blagojevich's closest advisers and the chief fundraisers on his two campaigns, was indicted Thursday on tax fraud charges alleging he improperly used corporate funds to cover gambling debts he had run up in Las Vegas and with a local bookie," the Tribune reports.
Kelly, you might recall, is the pal Blagojevich put in charge of gaming policy.
4. There are a number of scenarios which would explain why Sam Zell is lobbying the mayor and the governor to have the state buy Wrigley Field, and none of them are in your interest.
5. "A federal influence-peddling probe into the administration of Gov. Rod Blagojevich has expanded to include allegations that prominent Joliet pharmacist solicited campaign contributions in exchange for promises of regulatory favors," the Tribune reports.
"The federal inquiry follows Tribune reports about a 2005 accusation made to state police that the pharmacist offered to intervene in the Medicaid fraud probe of another drugstore owner in exchange for a $25,000 contribution to the governor."
"The Tribune also reported allegations from state investigators that they were hindered by political interference in a separate Medicaid fraud case against the Joliet pharmacist, Harish M. Bhatt, who has helped raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for the governor."
7. "[W]e remain committed to publishing, both in print and on the Web, in-depth reporting, robust listings, and provocative arts criticism," Reader editor Alison True writes this week.
A) Just not as committed as we used to be.
8. "[O]nce it became apparent what the future with the new ownership held, [True] surely could have done the honorable thing that others in similar circumstances have done: handed in her own resignation to Creative Loafing and its banker-lender-investor-creditors and told Ben Eason to fire these extraordinary writers himself."
- Andrew Patner, in a letter to the Reader
9. "In one of the largest awards ever in a Chicago Police shooting, a Cook County jury Thursday said the city must pay $12 million to the family of a 23-year-old unarmed man whose death was caught on a CTA station security video now heavily viewed on YouTube," the Sun-Times reports.
"[T]he Office of Professional Standards recommended [the officer's] firing, but former police Supt. Phil Cline only suspended him for 30 days - then promoted him to detective."
11. "In a stinging defeat for the Bush Administration, one of seven Miami men accused of plotting to join forces with al-Qaeda to blow up Chicago's Sears Tower was acquitted Thursday, and the case against the rest ended in a hung jury," AP reports in a story on page 28 of the Sun-Times.
I'm just going to go ahead and say I told you so.
12. I'm just going to go ahead and say it again.
14. Dammit, we can't let a few no-goodnik outsiders with an anti-torture agenda get in the way of our Olympics!
15. Daley press secretary Jackie Heard "would not discuss details of the deals involving the mayor's son and nephew," the Sun-Times notes.
"Patrick Daley could not be reached for comment. His cousin, Vanecko, issued a written statement . . . The other investors . . . also declined to be interviewed . . . the company's former president, Anthony Duffy, would not comment."
Will the mayor call on those who know who did it to come forward?
16. "[Kelly] began as a roofing contractor in the 1990s," the Tribune notes. "At the same time, he became friends with Gery Chico, then Mayor Richard Daley's chief of staff.
"In the 1990s, Kelly secured a number of contracts at O'Hare International Airport and for other city agencies. A roofing firm that Kelly oversaw, BCI Commercial Roofing, as well as an affiliated company, Castle Construction, were paid $7.6 million for work at O'Hare and Midway Airports between 1999 and 2004."
Had enough yet?
17. Today we kick off The 12 Days of Beachwood Christmas with "Have a Dysfunctional Family Christmas."
And don't forget "The Hester Man."
In sign of commitment to in-depth reporting, company considers eliminating newsroom.
19. Pat Boone had one soulful moment. And Don Jacobson located it.
20. Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot share their best albums of 2007 on Sound Opinions on Friday at 8 p.m., rebroadcast Saturday at 11 a.m., on Chicago Public Radio (91.5 FM).
The Beachwood Tip Line: Heal your soul.
Posted on December 14, 2007
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