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The [Thursday] Papers

* Can the Iraq Study Group now get to work on Iran and North Korea? And then the economy, health care, Illinois' finances, and the BCS?

* The Iraq Study Group: Shadow government at its best.

* George W. Bush is kind of like a national version of Todd Stroger, isn't he? But does that make Bill Beavers our Dick Cheney?

* Baker-Hamilton '08.

* Rudy Giuliani was originally a member of the study group, but bailed out earlier this year. In a letter to Baker, he said, "my previous time commitments do not permit me the full and active participation that the Iraq Study Group deserves."

Rudy Giuliani: A true patriot.

He was replaced by Ed Meese.

* Newspaper editors are right - Americans just aren't interested in serious news.

* This oral history of the Iraq war is stunning in its revelation of how long ago the media knew the picture the Bush Administration was presenting of conditions on the ground had nothing to do with reality. It also shows how naive much of the media's coverage has been.

* Why do they hate us? A little history.

* The civilian death toll.

* Newt Gingrich asks: What if there had been a Baker-Hamilton Commission advising General Washington? His analogy is off. If there had been such a commission back then, it would have been advising the British, and it would have declared the war a disaster and recommended bringing the troops home.

* Next from Newt: What if there had been a Baker-Hamilton Commission advising Hitler?

Daley Dose
No comment.

Mission Accomplished
So that's where they went.

Does Todd Stroger have a vote? Or, more importantly, does Todd Stroger care? "I'm not voting anyway, so I'm not going to do anything today about it," he said Wednesday, according to a Tribune report.

Yes, I can see that. No need to settle the issue ahead of time. Better to wait until the controversy provokes a crisis on the board and a legal circus ensues.

The Beav
"He don't need to vote; I'm his vote," Bill Beavers said.

True enough. In fact, why should Stroger even show up for work? Gerald Nichols could just drop his check off every two weeks.

Chandler's Basement
Ald. Michael Chandler originally said the press couldn't be at the meeting in which Robert Steele was installed as his mother's replacement on the Cook County board. Because unlike Third World dictatorships, we conduct coups in private.

Hey, when the troops come home, can we bring them to Illinois for a little nation-building?

Bobby Steele
"I think my mother and our family [have] provided a long list of wonderful things that we've done for the citizenship," Robert Steele said in accepting his new county board seat, according to the Tribune's account. "And so I think the citizens of Cook County will be better served by having somebody familiar with Cook County."

And it's really up to him to make that decision.

"I'm familiar with the commissioners who are on the county board so the transition for me to go into office will be a lot easier than for anyone else who's trying to come into the office and learn the system."

Because it's been such a problem teaching newcomers how things work.

"I know the system because it's at my home table every Sunday afternoon."

So you know how to not write a budget. Sweet.

Doing Unto Others
"I'm sorry, Mr. Steele, we'd like to place your child in the school of your choice, but we're going to give that slot to the principal's kid instead."

"I'm sorry, Mr. Steele, your daughter would be a great candidate for that job but we're going to give it to the manager's kid instead."

"I'm sorry, Mr. Steele, but those jobs are restricted to the children of those who already have them. They think it would be best for the citizenship that way."

Bobbie Steele
She's "glad to pass on the mantle."

Because that's what elected office in Illinois is - a mantle to be passed.

Wanted: The Baker-Hamilton Cook County Study Group.

The Decider
Don't forget who's really behind this.

Lone Justice
"It may seem pretty cool to be a Supreme Inca when your'e the leader on the street of a gang until the title 'Supreme Inca' becomes 'lead defendant.'"

- Patrick Fitzgerald

It is the fate of the Cubs fan to watch the Tribune Company open the financial spigots in one of the thinnest free-agent markets in years and make all the wrong moves, spending themselves to what is sure to be glorious failure. What's worse, miserly mismanagement or megamaniacal mismanagement?

Lilly Livered
"An amazing stat about Ted Lilly, signed to a $40 million contract by the Cubs - his 4.60 career ERA actually is higher than the combined league average in 1999-2006 (4.56). He's been over the league ERA in two of his last four years," the Tribune says.

So . . . half the league's pitchers are better than Lilly? As Steve Rosenbloom would say, that's so Cub.

The Beachwood Tip Line: Waiting until the next next year.


Posted on December 7, 2006

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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