The [Tuesday] Papers
1. "Cook County's post-Sept. 11 security initiative, dubbed Project Shield, which has come under fire for being sharply over budget and years behind schedule, is proving to be an even bigger drain on taxpayers," the Sun-Times and NBC5 report. "And in the end, it will provide a more porous security net than envisioned."
The county has already spent at least $43 million in federal funds on Project Shield.
I would have done it for $42 million, but I missed the application deadline.
"Cook County officials have rejected interview requests regarding Project Shield."
Why shouldn't they? I'm sure they've figured out by now that they can just write up a statement later and get it published without being challenged.
2. Is it any less crazy for Pat Robertson to claim that earthquakes in Haiti and Chile are God's work than it is for the Morgan Park man who is the lead plaintiff in a Supreme Court challenge to Chicago's handgun ban to state that "I [feel] the Lord put me here for this?"
Does that mean defendant Mayor Daley is a tool of the devil?
4. "One of the reasons the extended debate rule is so important is because it forces us to sit down and negotiate with one another, not because we want to but because we have to," Sen. Christopher Dodd (D-Conn.) said in a floor speech.
"I have helped pass many pieces of legislation in my 24 years here, both as a majority and minority Member of this institution. I have never helped pass a single bill worth talking about that didn't have a Republican as a lead cosponsor. I don't know of a single piece of legislation here that didn't have a Republican and a Democrat in the lead. We need to sit down and work with each other. The rules of this institution have required that. That is why we exist. Why have a bicameral legislative body, two Chambers? What were the Framers thinking about 218 years ago? They understood the possibility of a tyranny of the majority. And yet, they fully endorsed the idea that in a democratic process, there ought to be a legislative body where the majority would rule."
5. President Obama pulled a sly and cynical trick in setting up his health care summit that only served to make health care reform an even more partisan issue than it already is - he left out the Democrats who oppose the bill. That would have been a true health care summit. Why couldn't their ideas be heard?
After all, if the Democrats are going to push this through themselves, they'll need to convert a significant number of their own party members in the House. And those are members who are both liberal and think the bill is an insurance industry giveaway that falls woefully short of real reform and conservatives who think the bill is too costly and not strict enough on abortion funding.
The divisions in this country are no longer merely partisan.
The transcript isn't available yet, but Howard Dean noted last night on Hardball how many independent Obama voters and Democrats voted for Scott Brown in Massachusetts - knowing the consequences for the health care bill.
Using reconciliation to push the bill through is not just an affront to Republicans - and it would certainly be another broken promise by Obama, both by dint of his previous statements as a United States Senator about the process and by his central campaign pledge to change the way business is conducted in Washington.
6. From state Senate President (Fast) John(ny) Cullerton's law firm bio:
"John J. Cullerton practices in Thompson Coburn Fagel Haber's Real Estate Practice Group. His focus includes:
"* Government relations work with respect to real estate tax assessment and real estate tax appeals.
"* Zoning, land use and annexation.
"* Licensing and permit applications before local governments.
"* Procedures and advocacy strategies for clients with matters being considered by legislators, regulators and policy makers.
"* John has been successful in obtaining for clients: tax increment financing, tax abatements, special service areas, enterprise zones, special tax classifications, sales tax sharing agreements and industrial revenue bonds.
"* John also appears before the Chicago City Council, all state and local governmental regulatory agencies, local real estate tax assessment boards, and negotiates for clients with Aldermen and Alderwomen throughout Chicagoland."
Oh, and by the way, he's the president of the state senate.
8. Wither Lee and Konerko? Our very own George Ofman says they could both be gone by July.
9. Cities He's Slept In. My favorite is Baltimore, though there's a whole lot of goodness to choose from.
10. Oops, the Sun-Times re-ran a Jack Higgins cartoon from last month. Either that or Higgins is just trying to goad us.
Or - and I'm just throwing this out there - Higgins really is that stupid. Or, or, another alternative, maybe he's really just run out of ideas. (See Item No. 12.) (For that matter, see the Snow Job item here too.) (For that matter, see the item Is Jack Higgins Smarter Than A 5th-Grader here.)
Conservative commentator and self-described global warming agnostic Charles Krauthammer talking about record snowfalls on Fox News recently:
"It has no effect one way or the other on the veracity of the science. There is no weather event, even a string of weather events, that's going to have any affect on the truth or the falsity of global climate change . . . It doesn't have any effect on the science."
Too bad the same couldn't be said for its effect on journalism.
The Beachwood Tip Line: Goad us.
Posted on March 2, 2010
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