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The [Tuesday] Papers

"Medicaid payment delays of up to six months are causing fits for supportive living centers throughout Illinois, and some owners are worried they may have to close if the situation doesn't improve soon," AP reports.

This is the price some people are paying for the economic scandal - yes, let's start calling it a scandal - while the very comfortable complain about how unfairly they're being treated.

"'It's a crisis for us because reserves and lines of credit are being exhausted,' Wayne Smallwood, executive director of the Springfield-based Affordable Assisted Living Coalition, said last week. 'This is the worst we've seen, and there's no relief in sight.'

"Illinois' festering budget problems, the sagging economy and the end of the federal economic stimulus program in June have contributed to growing payment delays that also hamstring nursing homes, hospitals, doctors and other medical providers."

Sears Tears
Swell, but you're no J.C. Penney.

Fat Cat
Speaking of outrageous complaints from the outrageously comfortable . . .

"Caterpillar Inc.'s Electro-Motive unit has decided to lock out locomotive manufacturing workers in London, Ontario, after finding out the Canadian Auto Workers told members not to strike following the breakdown of contract negotiations," Reuters reports.

"Electro-Motive said earlier on Sunday that it was unilaterally imposing changes in wage and benefit terms for its workers in Canada after talks broke down, and that workers were encouraged to show up for work.

"But the company's stance changed after the CAW surprised the company on Sunday afternoon by not calling a strike and instead instructing workers to report for duty."

Rahm's Chicago
"A City Hall rewrite to tighten rules for protesters at this spring's gathering of international leaders in Chicago would also place permanent and little-publicized restrictions on all future demonstrations," the Tribune reports.

"Mayor Rahm Emanuel proposed the changes to the city's parade ordinance in his December request to the City Council for expanded powers to deal with the NATO and G-8 summits, set to overlap between May 19-21. The mayor said his request for new spending authority and additional restrictions on public gatherings 'is temporary and it's just for the conference and it's appropriate.'

"But the mayor's office now acknowledges the protest rules would be permanent. And a closer look at Emanuel's proposals reveals a series of changes to arcane parade regulations that would be accompanied by a large boost in fines for violations - from the current $50 for some to a minimum $1,000 per violation."

Must. Stifle. Protests. Against. Companies. Like. CME. And. Caterpillar.

And even make some money doing it.

Back In The Real World
Peanut butter alert.

Family Affair
"As a convicted felon, William F. Cellini - the longtime Republican power broker recently convicted of corruption tied to former Gov. Rod Blagojevich's 'pay-to-play' schemes - can no longer do business with the state of Illinois, as he has done for more than four decades," the Sun-Times reports.

"But the Illinois law under which Cellini faces a five-year ban on getting any state contracts doesn't apply to his vast network of business ventures, some of which have been turned over to his daughter and son, according to state officials."

It's good to be the Pope. Or his children.

Following Finney
"Is the Woodlawn pastor an overextended do-gooder or a political rainmaker?"

Asking For Help
"Kids from working-class families less likely to ask questions in class than middle-class counterparts, study finds," the Tribune reported last month. (via This Week in Education.)

Stock Crock
"'It's a stock picker's market.' I heard that dreaded phrase the other day and cringed," David Roeder writes for the Sun-Times.

"It's a lie. It's a scam. And the next time you hear it from a talking head on CNBC, throw your shoe at the TV. (OK - not a good idea in this age of delicate flat screens, so throw a stocking instead.)

"When an investment professional declares a 'stock picker's market,' it's an assertion that they have a handle on it, that they are most to be trusted with your money and that poor ignorant you can't hope to match their performance.

"Research shows they are wrong on every count. The investments of most fund managers don't match the performance of the most comparable index and, when you think about it, the reason is clear. An index is a passive grouping of stocks, but a money manager with a large asset base and a need to spread the risk must make many decisions about stocks to include.

"Above all, they need to put money to work, knowing that customers don't seek them out to hoard cash. So they invest in, say, 100 companies, but how much conviction do they really have once they get to their 90th best investment idea?"

Value Pick
Sidley Austin lawyer decides to learn his son's name.

Fight For Your Right . . .
. . . To Peddle Street Art.

Drawing Rip Hamilton . . .
. . . In Four Minutes.

Hell On Earth . . .
. . . In River North.


The Beachwood Tip Line: Fish filleted.


Posted on January 3, 2012

MUSIC - Millions Of New Guitar Players.
TV - "One America News" is AT&T.
POLITICS - When Wall Street Came To My Mobile Home Park.
SPORTS - Tonyball, Bears On The Run, Eyes On The Sky & More!

BOOKS - China Holding Swedish Publisher.


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