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The [Thursday] Papers

The mayor is playing a sly game when it comes to the CTA funding crisis. Where, for example, is the Daley Plan?

There isn't one.

It's all the state's fault.

Last time I looked, it wasn't called the Illinois Transit Authority.

That's not to say the state doesn't have - by far - the biggest funding role to play here. But waiting for Rod Blagojevich to save the day is like waiting for the Sun-Times to show some pride and restraint on the Stacy Peterson story. It ain't gonna happen.

So where is the Daley Plan?

After all, it's his constituents who ride the CTA.

And curiously, the budget that the mayor just passed contains no new increases in the city's measly share of CTA funding - a share which hasn't changed in Daley's 18 years in office. Given inflation, that means the city actually contributes less to the CTA now than it did when Daley took office.

We're getting new libraries, though!

Daley met with the governor and state legislative leaders on Wednesday and pulled another fast one.

"Daley lasted only about an hour before making his excuses to leave, telling reporters outside he was 'very optimistic' about reaching a CTA deal," Mark Brown writes, "only to have City Hall put out the word later that he actually left in frustration because the discussion kept veering off to casino gambling."

In other words, the mayor was lying when he talked to reporters after the meeting. And then he found it politically useful to send word through channels to reporters that he was secretly seething.

See how he plays 'em?

And then he gets a big front-page headline about walking out of a meeting with the feckless governor. Not Daley's fault.

That's leadership.

And the media tripped all over itself.

"Mayor Daley on Wednesday disgustedly walked out of a transit summit by Gov. Blagojevich," the Sun-Times reports this morning.

In the very next paragraph, however, the paper states that "Daley didn't leave those who attended the closed-door session with the impression he was upset."

The paper depends on "City Hall sources" for the spin that "Daley departed angry and frustrated."

While noting that "publicly, the mayor said he was 'very optimistic.'"

What really seems clear is that Daley has avoided becoming personally involved in CTA negotiations to evade the taint of a bad situation, and that he only attended the "summit" yesterday because he was boxed into it. He attended for show, stayed less than an hour, lied to reporters, and then spun the storyline his way.

Bravo.

So where were we again? Oh yeah, the CTA crisis. It still exists. And the mayor has no plan.

Breaking News!
"Stop The Whining!

"Are you a chronic complainer?

"Nesita Kwan shows you how to avoid The Complaint Addiction."

Tonight on NBC5 "News."

Searching For Stacy
If only the media spent as much energy trying to locate the missing person who hired Angelo Torres as it's spending on The Search for Stacy.

I hope Drew Peterson is innocent just to spite them.

Body Odor
The Sun-Times reports this morning on evaluations of Drew Peterson's Today show appearance by body language experts.

That's a full day of reporting we can never get back.

My favorite conclusion was this one: "Is he guilty of the disappearance? I don't know. Is he acting out of character for a normal person, very much so."

Um, how does a normal person being accused on national TV of offing two of his wives act? Out of character, perhaps?

Naive Melody
The Sun-Times editorial page this morning hails the so-called new feistiness of the Chicago City Council, as allegedly evidenced by the 21 votes cast against the mayor's property tax increase.

Earth to Sun-Times!

Many of those 21 votes would have gone in the mayor's favor if he really needed them. That's how the game is played. Daley allowed several of those aldermen to vote against the tax increase for their own political reasons. There is no uprising.

Corn Meal
The executive editor of the Dubuque Telegraph-Herald responding last summer to John Kass and his crusade for a Chicago cop now in an Iowa prison:

"I'm not a lawyer or a judge. Assigning or absolving guilt in an alcohol-fueled altercation is not easy. Kass managed to do that, and I suppose that talent is one reason why he works in Tribune Tower and I hang out at Eighth and Bluff.

"But I do know many folks involved in law enforcement and the courts here, and I don't believe that they are 'homers,' blindly taking the side of the local subject over an out-of-towner.

"A couple of local defense attorneys told me that one under-emphasized issue in all this is mandatory sentencing. Even Gallagher says there was no appetite for sending a cop to prison. But that is required under Iowa law.

"Mette is scheduled to report to prison - a more dangerous scenario than usual, given his occupation - in a few months. He is expected to appeal the conviction. As the case plays out, expect more criticism of Dubuque and Iowa. And references to pigs and corn."

*

Kass wrote earlier this month that "the spinners . . . say I'm not giving you the whole story, and the spinning continues, by the prosecutors in Dubuque, and by some in Illinois who hate cops for being cops and so lump Mike in with the rotten ones under investigation in the Chicago Police Department."

I invite John to name just who in Illinois hates cops for being cops. Who? Who are you referring to?

Meantime, I invite readers to once again read the last item here, "Kass's Cop," and decide for yourself.

Our Joyous Future
Let's try this again. And be sure to click on the artist's name.

Jail Bait
Maybe Phillip Radmer should be assigned to fix the CTA crisis.

"A disbarred Berwyn lawyer awaiting sentencing for selling vacant lots that belonged to a Chicago church pulled off a similar scam while incarcerated in Cook County Jail," the Tribune reports.

"In the latest bogus transacation, Philip Radmer sold property on the city's West Side that belonged to Providence-St. Mel School - without the school's knowledge - to a savvy real estate investor and developer.

"Even as Radmer sat in jail, $55,000 went to a company he ran."

You have to give the guy credit, don't you?

Cryin' Ryan
Maybe George Ryan - now hard at work trying to find the real killer - and his lawyer pals Jim Thompson and Dan Webb (who has been mysteriously absent from public view, no?) should watch Nesita Kwan's report tonight about whining.

Or they could just read the Op-Ed by former federal prosecutors Patrick Collins and Zachary Fardon published in the Tribune today and admit they're wrong.

The Beachwood Tip Line: Chronic complainers only.



Permalink

Posted on November 15, 2007


MUSIC - The Weekend In Chicago Rock.
TV - Slow TV Chicago.
POLITICS - Dangerous, Low-Wage Industries Depend On Immigrants, Refugees.
SPORTS - Wrong Foot Louie vs. The Fireball Kid!

BOOKS - Meet Chicago's American Writers Museum.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Meet Limo Bob.


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