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The [Tuesday] Papers

"Chicago's city council watchdog wants access to aldermen's e-mails," WBEZ reports.

At first blush, to some people, that may seem extreme. It's not. E-mails from city accounts - or from personal accounts to avoid detection but for the purpose of conducting city business - ought to be considered public documents, as they are in many other jurisdictions.

But that's not the point of this item. Read on.

"Legislative Inspector General Faisal Khan made public the request in his first ever semi-annual report, released on Monday. Khan was hired late last year . . . Aldermen had long resisted watchdog oversight, ignoring calls from former Mayor Richard Daley to allow the city's inspector general to investigate city council members and staff. In 2010, aldermen created the Office of Legislative Inspector General.

"It took a year-and-a-half for them to hire Khan. He is only paid to work part-time and has no staff."

Here's an idea: Let's be his staff!

Seriously, could we crowdsource this thing for Mr. Khan? Get a Knight grant? Involve the BGA?

I'm not entirely sure how it would work, but at a minimum we could field a volunteer in each ward to field tips and complaints, couldn't we? Because where to you go now if you think something hinky is up in your neighborhood?

Think about it, people.

Cardinal Rule
"Recent comments by those who administer our city seem to assume that the city government can decide for everyone what are the 'values' that must be held by citizens of Chicago," Cardinal Francis George writes on his blog (via Capitol Fax).

"I was born and raised here, and my understanding of being a Chicagoan never included submitting my value system to the government for approval. Must those whose personal values do not conform to those of the government of the day move from the city?Is the City Council going to set up a 'Council Committee on Un-Chicagoan Activities' and call those of us who are suspect to appear before it?"

Oh, you don't have to appear before it; just look up and speak into the camera.


Cap Fax commenter P.: "And on the third day . . . someone read the Cardinal's blog."

Cubs Proposal

"In the far suburbs of Chicago, shopping centers built in anticipation of a residential and commercial boom that failed to materialize are getting increasingly desperate for tenants," Crain's reports.

"After sitting on vacant retail properties for years, owners are striking deals with nontraditional tenants like churches and medical practices that don't generate the same kind of foot traffic or sales taxes as the typical store."

Grant's Tomb
"The longest serving agent-in-charge of the Chicago FBI office announced his retirement today after 29 years of service with the agency," the Tribune reports.

"Robert D. Grant has served as the head of the Chicago office since January of 2005, according to a FBI press release."

Thank you for your service, sir. My favorite moment was when you said this:

"If Illinois isn't the most corrupt state in the country, it's certainly one helluva competitor,"

And this:

"At the end of the day if we're charging politicians for taking bribes and there are business people or industries offering those bribes and we're not putting them in jail to the same tune as public officials, then we're only solving half the problem."


"Grant has accepted a position with the Walt Disney Company global security team in Los Angeles," the Tribune adds.

Jeeper Creeper
Whiting, Indiana is now home to the world's largest crawler crane.

Priceless Advice
Gal Must Choose Dog Or Dude.

Lottery Push
"The company hired to manage the Illinois Lottery fell nearly $100 million short of the profits it promised during its inaugural year as the nation's first private manager of a state lottery, records show," the Tribune reports.

"Despite not hitting its revenue target, Northstar still turned a record profit for the lottery, which has lagged other major state lotteries for years."

So Illinoisans threw more money away than ever chasing odds worse than a lightning strike but still not as much as our new private lottery overlords promised. They promise to work harder, I'm sure.

Our favorite trade tweets.

Rig Report
Alabama Music Office visits Chicago, finds guitars. Plus: A '60 strat relic and Apollo tube bass amp.


The Beachwood Tip Line: Partly cloudy, always sunny.


Posted on July 31, 2012

MUSIC - Chief Keef Changed The Industry.
TV - Vizio's Best Product Is You.
POLITICS - UIC: Soda Taxes Work.
SPORTS - More McCaskey Malpractice.

BOOKS - All About Poop.


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