The [Thursday] Papers
By Steve Rhodes
1. "Kids Give Daley Advice."
2. "And the gold medal for misleading citizens about the benefits of hosting the Olympics goes to . . . Chicago," I wrote today for NBCChicago.com.
"The evidence continues to pile up - albeit far too late - that City Hall and its ancillary Chicago 2016 operation have run a carefully constructed propaganda campaign to shield taxpayers from the ugly truth: hosting the Olympics stinks.
"The latest evidence comes from a study expected to be released Thursday showing that the economic boost Chicago would get from the Games would be about one-fourth of what the city promised. And given reams of economic data already sitting on the shelf from past Games, that's a best-case scenario."
University of Chicago economist Allen Sanderson's reaction [seen on Fox News Chicago this morning]: Chicago 2016's projections are "outrageous" . . . "It just doesn't pass the laugh test."
But we've got Oprah!
"I love and believe in Chicago, and I think it would be the perfect host city for the 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games," she said in a statement released through Chicago 2016.
She did make herself available to reporters who might have - but probably wouldn't have - asked her:
* Why do you think Chicago would be a better host city than Rio? Tokyo? Madrid?
* What economic studies have you read that lead you to believe this will benefit the city?
* When you look at the severe financial troubles that Vancouver and London are experiencing as they prepare to host the games, what makes you think Chicago will be able to do better?
* And what about the white elephants in Athens and problems in Atlanta and the exorbitant costs in Beijing?
* Given the history of corruption in Daley's City Hall, what makes you think the Games won't be anything but a greased up pig on a spit for his cronies?
But then, Oprah wasn't made available for comment. She's beyond being questioned.
3. "Federal inspectors found numerous violations at O'Hare International Airport that endanger airplanes at the most critical phases of flight - takeoffs and landings, officials said Wednesday," the Tribune reports.
"The safety breaches, uncovered by the Federal Aviation Administration during routine inspections last month at O'Hare, range from debris on runways to excessive amounts of tall grass and weeds that create hazards for planes by attracting birds and other wildlife.
"A warning notice from the FAA to Chicago said the inspections show that O'Hare is seriously out of compliance with federal aviation law. The notice, called a 'letter of correction,' also chastised the Chicago Department of Aviation for what the federal agency called a pattern of false statements in its self-inspection program."
This is almost a dog-bites-man story. At this point it would only be news if the City of Chicago wasn't engaging in a pattern of false statements.
4. "Despite a federal investigation of alleged clout admissions at Chicago Public Schools, Mayor Daley on Wednesday defended the controversial process that has allowed principals at nine elite public high schools to handpick five percent of their students," the Sun-Times reports.
"You have to have confidence in principals. Say a child gets a C-plus. You know that child can achieve. He or she could be a slow reader. Or they're not a good tester. This idea [that] you're gonna test everybody - you're gonna have very few peple in the 99.9 percentile," Daley said.
"They can take a C student and that C student can all the way go to a B or an A student. If everybody's an A student, then you're not gonna improve learning at all in any education system. You have to have confidence in principals in giving opportunities to young people and young families."
Okay. But which C students get picked?
"There's no political intrusion," Daley said. "You have someone calling. Yes, there's been an alderman call on behalf of their child. But, the principal is gonna say, 'This is not right for your child. I can get this child in. But, they're never gonna compete. They're never gonna move ahead. So what is the best interest of the child?'"
Tell you what, Mr. Mayor. If you can find a single example of an alderman being told their child isn't good enough to get into their school of choice, we'll re-open this discussion.
That would be a good question for Whitney Young Principal Joyce Kenner: Have you ever turned down an alderman?
5. Dear Mayor Daley: Why didn't I get into Whitney Young when I had better grades than the alderman's kid?
New magnet school strategy: Encourage your child to get straight-Cs and get in through a principal pick.
7. The Magic Olympics. Is there nothing they can't do?
8. "Keeping giddy 20-somethings focused on the task at hand may be the least-discussed aspect of coaching," our very own Mike Luce writes in The College Football Report.
Plus, who the Beachwood Sports Seal likes this weekend.
9. "They pile up during the weekend and fill up my section, asking for the salad dressing on the side because they don't like a lot of it and then want extra, thereby putting twice as much on the salad as I would have," our very own Patty Hunter writes in At Your Service: The Stupid Season.
"They ask if our personal-sized pizzas are 'manly enough.' If you need a pizza to confirm suspicions you have about your masculinity you're in deep trouble my friend. But yes, it is manly enough to feed you. From the first bite on your chest hair will double in size and your pheromones will render you the most desirable creature on the planet. (I don't know what that says about the 10-year-old girl that ate almost the same thing you did about an hour ago but I don't really care.)"
The Beachwood Tip Line: At your service.
Posted on September 24, 2009
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