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The [Monday] Papers

From Mike Allen's Top 10 for Axios on Sunday:

A bearish view of the fight ahead in "Crucial lessons from the last tax reform," by Jeff Birnbaum (president of BGR Public Relations, and co-author with Alan Murray of Showdown at Gucci Gulch, about the 1986 tax reform), on the WashPost Sunday Opinion page:

* "Tax reform is complicated, painful and personal by design."

* "Tax reform was launched in 1985 with a scene that's almost unimaginable today: a televised speech by Reagan, a Republican, followed by a Democratic response by Dan Rostenkowski, the chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, endorsing the president's initiative."

Ah, yes, the good ol' days when Rosty and Ronnie dispensed with ideology and worked together for the good of the nation.

At least that's what Official Washington - and Official Chicago - has wanted you to believe for years. The reporting shows something different - not that Rosty and Ronnie didn't work together, but that they did so to sell out their blue-collar and middle-class constituents.

From Reading Rosty:

Book: The Great American Tax Dodge
Authors: Donald L. Barlett and James B. Steele
Excerpt: "The new era of rampant special-interest tax breaks was defined by the Tax Reform Act of 1986. Amid blasts of rhetoric from lawmakers as to how they were routing special interests and making the tax code fairer for middle-class America, tax-law writers working behind the scenes crammed the legislation with hundreds of clauses benefiting a handful of taxpayers.

"Dan Rostenkowski, the Illinois Democrat who chaired the House Ways and Means Committee, called the tax reform measure 'a bill that reaches deep into our national sense of justice - and gives us back a trust in government that has slipped away in the maze of tax preferences for the rich and powerful.'

"Then Rostenkowski inserted dozens of special provisions, including one worth at least $150 million to Commonwealth Edison Company, the utility serving Rostenkowski's native Chicago."

And believe me, what Rostenkowski did was way worse than that; IIRC the worst examples were just too long and complicated to excerpt.

See also: The [Rosty] Papers.

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From the Beachwood sports desk . . .

The White Sox Report: Unlovable Losers
There's nothing cute or lovable about a bad ballclub on the South Side.

SportsMonday: The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year
Finally, a reason to feel reasonably okay about Chicago sports.

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The Weekend In Chicago Rock
Is in pre-production.

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BeachBook

The 'Gateway Drug' Is Alcohol, Not Marijuana.

*

The Problem With Modern Philanthropy.

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The Case Against Steve Cohen And SAC Capital.

*

Chicago's Soccer Team Is Draining Hometown Funds.

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TweetWood
A sampling.

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The Beachwood Tronc Line: You have to do some of the work yourself.



Permalink

Posted on April 3, 2017


MUSIC - Blues Fest 2017.
TV - The Queen's Speech.
POLITICS - Psychopath CEOs Destroy Value.
SPORTS - Why Todd Frazier Should Lead Off.

BOOKS - The Fresh Air Fund's Complicated Racial Record.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - The Great Lakes Have Tsunamis.


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