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The [Tuesday] Papers

A somewhat abbreviated column today as I attend to other business.

Mystery Sanchez Theater
Talking back to the Chicago Tonight's report on the conviction of Al Sanchez.

SANCHEZ: I just did my job the way I was supposed to.

RHODES: Yes, illegally, just like the mayor's people told you to!

SANCHEZ: I made recommendations to make sure we had a workforce that represents the city.

RHODES: And who better to represent the city than unqualified workers who helped elect the mayor!

SANCHEZ: I guess that's a federal crime.

RHODES: Guess so!


PATRICK FITZGERALD: He should have understood that recommending [HDO] people was a crime. It was made clear that Al Sanchez was in charge. He wasn't the first person convicted in this series of cases . . . people want to talk about a fall guy, but when you're running the Department of Streets and Sanitation . . . it's on your watch.

RHODES: C'mon, Fitzy! He was running an affirmative action program! Er, wait, he had nothing to do with hiring . . . er, he had nothing to do with hiring except trying to reflect the city . . . er, wait . . .


SANCHEZ LAWYER THOMAS BREEN: He got caught up in something where the rules changed.

RHODES: Yes. Thirty years ago.

BREEN: Why should Al Sanchez be the fall guy?

RHODES: Because that's how the Daley administration operates?

BREEN: I don't understand why Al Sanchez was singled out.

RHODES: I know. You'd think they'd go after Robert Sorich or something.

BREEN: This was done every day in every department.

RHODES: Are you turning state's evidence?

BREEN: Why does someone have to wear the jacket?

RHODES: Tradition?

BREEN: Why is the federal government Johnny-come-lately on this?

RHODES: I know! What has Patrick Fitzgerald been doing all this time?


DALEY STATEMENT: I have never supported any illegal activity.

RHODES: Publicly.

DALEY: We now have an inspector general.

RHODES: Whom I keep cutting off at the knees.

DALEY: These are things that happened years ago.

RHODES: When I was still consolidating power.

DALEY: Things are different now.

RHODES: We've changed in these last few weeks.

DALEY: I feel for Al Sanchez and his family.

RHODES: On the other hand, I feel nothing for the people who merited city jobs but didn't get 'em. If they refused to play ball, that's their problem. Wait, did I say that out loud or just think it?


FITZGERALD: Maybe the most qualified person should get the job. It's not crazy.

RHODES: It's just not the Chicago Way. Plus, this way we know that our garbage will be picked up and our potholes filled . . . er, wait a minute . . .


ELIZABETH BRACKETT: It's an ongoing case.

RHODES: It only has one way to go - up.

Train in Vain
Beachwood reader Michael O'Connor responds to item 14 (World's Largest Model Train Set):

Where is Chicago's authentic model railroad, complete with slow zones, outdated rolling stock, 110 year-old Elevated, where derailed trains hang from the structure, black smoke billowing from the Blue Line Subway, trains to Midway that stop running at 11 p.m., a Congress Line with more than 50 percent of the stations closed and abandoned, etc. etc.?
Does anyone remember that the world's first electric mass transit using a third rail power source was displayed by the intramural rail system inside the World's Fair in 1893? The train that brought visitors to the Fair was pulled by a black smoke-belching Locomotive. The future was displayed at the Fair. But in that city, 114 years later, we have not moved a micron forward in transit technology.

What the Helen?
Helen Shiller turned to the dark side a long time ago, but wow, she's even worse than I imagined.

Return Enragement
From CAN TV:

Just a reminder that the Journalism Town Hall will be cablecast in Chicago this Sunday, March 29 at 10:30 a.m. on cable channel CAN TV21. Replay dates and times are:

* Monday, March 30th at 8:00 a.m. on cable channel CAN TV19

* Friday, April 3rd at 12:00 p.m. on cable channel CAN TV21

The Beachwood Tip Line: Rules-changing.


Posted on March 24, 2009

MUSIC - Who's Next In Chicago Rap.
TV - Tribune-Nexstar Deal Is Bad News.
POLITICS - Big Soda Hates You.
SPORTS - The Ex-Cub Factor.

BOOKS - Wright Brothers, Wrong Story!

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - The Bad News About Human Nature.

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