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The [Thursday] Papers

A new Tribune poll shows that Gov. Rod Blagojevich's popularity in Illinois is so low he has to look up to see George W. Bush.

Only 13 percent of registered likely voters surveyed said they approved of the governor's job performance; only 10 percent said they wanted to see him re-elected in 2010 for a third term.

The president's approval rating stands at 18 percent. Maybe Blago should invade Wisconsin.

Further, only 19 percent of Illinois Democrats surveyed say they would like to see the governor re-elected. The poll did not ask how many would like to see the governor indicted.

"The poll results point to the polarizing figure that Blagojevich has become," the Tribune writes.

But Blagojevich isn't polarizing at all; nobody likes him.

Asking Anita
"Just a couple of hours after the feds charged former police commander Jon Burge with perjury and obstruction of justice Tuesday, Democratic state's attorney nominee Anita Alvarez conceded that Cook County prosecutors - which would include her current boss, state's attorney Richard Devine, and her onetime boss, Richard M. Daley, though she didn't use their names - should have done more to bring the accused torturer to justice," Mick Dumke reports at Clout City.

File Under Burge
In addition to Division Street, I've been contributing items to the new local NBC site that launched last week. In this post, I wonder, among other things, if we'll find out just which companies were willing to hire Jon Burge as a security consultant despite his grisly reputation.


Lots of new stuff on Division Street, including the skinny on Barack's dentist, why Arne Duncan is a better bet than Paul Vallas to be his Education Secretary, what Ad Age thinks of Obama as a marketer, McCain's Chicago, and more.

He's No. 1
A proposition submitted for your approval: Patrick Fitzgerald is the best public servant in Chicago, in Illinois, and possibly in America.

He might even be our next U.S. attorney general. But would that be a good thing? Don't take him away, Barack! That's just what Daley wants you to do.

Party in the Park
If Barack Obama drew 100,000 people in St. Louis the other day and 200,000 in Berlin, how many do you think he'll draw to Grant Park on Election Night?

My God, it could be half a billion or more, don't you think?

I mean, it won't just be Chicagoans showing up; I would guess that African Americans in particular from all over the country will make the trek.

It's an entirely appropriate event to hold, but it sounds like an organizational and security nightmare.

"Attendees likely would face metal detectors and have their possessions searched, just as at all Obama events," the Tribune reports. "The process is similar to going through airport security and can create lines blocks long."

Some streets in the area "likely" will be closed, the Trib says.

That sounds like an understatement to me. I wouldn't be surprised if the entire downtown was sealed off.

Beale Street
"A South Side alderman on Wednesday demanded to know why Mayor Daley was spending $8.1 million in hotel tax revenues to secure and maintain Millennium Park when upkeep of the park beset by construction overruns 'wasn't supposed to cost taxpayers a dime'," the Sun-Times reports.

"'We cannot find money to . . . maintain the parks in our community. We can't find extra police to put on the street every single day. But we can find $8 million to take care of Millennium Park that wasn't supposed to cost taxpayers a dime. Not a dime,' said Ald. Anthony Beale (9th)."

In response, the mayor sealed off Beale's ward.

"Cook County's independent hospital board wants to spend $100 million more than last year," the Sun-Times reports.

Geez, for that much we could build one-fifth of another Millennium Park.

Taco Night in America
You may not realize it, but you won a free taco last night.

Homeward Bound
"Lathrop Homes residents and supporters will rally [today], for a new proposal to lease vacant apartments at the CHA development," Community Media Workshop reports.

"Two-thirds of Lathrop Homes' 900 units are vacant. Recent residents report that many are in 'pretty good shape,' and some have been rehabbed within the past 15 years, said [Logan Square Neighborhood Association] organizer John McDermott. The groups are proposing that 300 vacant units be leased, and has identified a variety of possible funding sources."

But . . .

"CHA stopped filling vacancies at Lathrop Homes in 1999, when it announced its Plan For Transformation aimed at mixed-income redevelopment. In 2006 the agency said it intended to demolish the development and rebuild 1200 new units, including market rate, affordable, and public housing. Shortly thereafter the working group discussing plans for Lathrop Homes was disbanded, and its future is still listed as 'to be determined' by the CHA - the last development with that designation."

Ferdy Film Frenzy
Continuing our blurbing of Marilyn Ferdinand's coverage of the Chicago International Film Festival. Go to Ferdy on Films for full reviews and details.

"The Sky, the Earth and the Rain: The Sky, the Earth and the Rain is that extremely rare film that truly turns down the noise of the world, creating a meditative state that allows one's body and being to relax totally and be in the moment. Its likely to leave many people feeling fidgety, waiting for something to 'happen.' In fact, a lot does happen in this film, but its story is told with an economy of exquisitely designed visual compositions that unmistakably communicate developments in the plot and extremely spare dialogue that can't amount to much more than 25 lines in the entire film. This Chilean film is the epitome of show, don't tell."

Film clip:


The Beachwood Tip Line: Onward and upward.


Posted on October 23, 2008

MUSIC - Lyric Opera Strike Settled.
POLITICS - USA Today's Op-Ed Disaster.
SPORTS - SportsMonday: Come On, Vic!

BOOKS - Chicago Book Haul: The Dial.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Chicagoetry: West Town Blues.

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