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The [Tuesday] Papers

"Karen Lewis' potential bid for Chicago Mayor has moved beyond just a thought - it's an 'organic,' growing movement, the fiery Chicago Teachers Union president said," the Sun-Times reports.

"Lewis revealed on Monday she already has an unofficial exploratory committee in the works, a chairperson has been named and her camp is working to have a representative in each of the city's 77 neighborhoods."

Hmm. An "unofficial" exploratory committee is "in the works." And her camp is "working" to have a representative in each neighborhood.

That's not the same as having any of those things.

My thought is that the CTU would essentially be putting this kind of infrastructure in place regardless of whether Lewis runs. But okay.

"Since an Early & Often poll released Sunday put Lewis at a 9-percentage-point advantage over Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Lewis' phone has been ringing non-stop, she said."

My thought is that I'll believe that poll only when the Reader's Steve Bogira gets done analzying it, because he basically demolished the Sun-Times's last poll on the subject.

Remember Rahm's "meager" support from just 2 percent of Hispanics in that poll? Bogira took a look at the unpublished methodology and found that what went unreported - and remains unclarified as far as I can tell - is that:

"Only 60 Hispanics were polled (compared with 245 whites and 171 African-Americans). Half of the Hispanic respondents were undecided. Of the 30 decided Hispanics, a single respondent said he or she would vote for Emanuel. If not for that lone respondent, the Sun-Times story might have described the mayor's troubling zero percent Hispanic support."

Using results from only 60 polling respondents is beyond reckless; it's malpractice.

Bogira also noted that "Emanuel may in fact be vulnerable, but the poll hardly showed his re-election to be on the ropes. The only opponent who rivaled his total support - Preckwinkle - hasn't said she'll run."

So now, with that in mind, let's turn to the latest Sun-TImes poll.

Guess what? Thirty-seven percent of Hispanic respondents said they would vote for Rahm Emanuel in a match-up with Karen Lewis. Rahm's support among Hispanics up 35 percent!

Lewis gets 41 percent of the Hispanic vote.

But in a match-up with Toni Preckwinkle, Rahm gets the edge among likely Hispanic voters by a 41 to 36 margin (technically, 41.3 to 35.9). Does that make sense?

And for some reason, former Ald. Robert Shaw gets 33.8 percent of the vote in a match-up with Rahm among Asian voters. (The poll should have been required to ask "Do you know who Robert Shaw is?" before asking if a respondent would vote for him; my guess is that this result is either bogus or simply an "anyone but Rahm" response.)

"[T]he [Emanuel] campaign finds these inaccurate robo polls entirely laughable," spokesman Pete Giangreco told the Sun-Times.

I wouldn't find the poll results entirely laughable, as much as I would like to believe them, but I don't find them much credible. (At the same time, Giangreco would say this was the greatest poll ever conducted in the history of the world if it showed his guy winning by a landslide.)

Another recent survey, "obtained exclusively by Crain's," which I take to mean leaked by the Emanuel campaign, found "substantially better" results for the mayor, though he was still found to be vulnerable, particularly to Preckwinkle.

I'm not much of a fan of political polling, and I think you can see why. For the most part, I think news organizations should stay away from them. If it's just a snapshot in time, as we're always told, then it's already old news by the time it's published. Methodologies are often suspect. Polls become substitutes for reporting on substance and artificially alter the dynamics of a race. And they in no way can consider the events - including scandal or even just bungles - that will unfold down the road. If candidates want to take polls, that's their business. The job of journalists shouldn't be to traffick in them unless they can do so with a certain amount of depth and insight - which I don't see here.

Leaving A Bad Taste
"Some vendors said they were considering asking the city to reimburse them for lost revenue after the festival stayed closed even though the weather had improved by early Saturday afternoon," the Tribune reports.

"But [city spokeswoman Mary] May said the restaurants and the city were all taking a gamble on the weather, saying in an e-mail that 'we all assume risk.'"

Not really.

"Tweedy and Williams were both paid for their canceled Saturday performances, and both will keep that money under terms of their contracts, May said."


"Keith Raskin, owner of Manny's Deli, the corned beef purveyor that has taken over sales of the festival's iconic barbecued turkey leg, said he could count on a deficit," the Sun-Times reports.

So Manny's has the turkey leg contract now. Somebody look into that.

Good Cappy, Bad Cappy
"But simply increasing the number of police on the street won't always keep crime from happening, [Ald. James] Cappleman said, pointing to the violent 4th of July weekend in Chicago as proof," the Tribune reports.

"Much of the violence that weekend happened in hot spot areas that were inundated with police already," he said. "The police department had prepared and sent more officers to these areas, and the violence still occurred. So we need to look at other ways to get at the root of the violence."


"Meanwhile, Ald. James Cappleman, whose 46th Ward includes Montrose Beach, praised the police response Sunday evening under extremely difficult circumstances but raised concerns about the numerous Chicago Park District parking lots in the immediate vicinity, allowing large crowds to gather there much more easily than at other beaches.

"Look at Oak Street Beach. Do you see this many parking spots there? Look at Lincoln Park. There just aren't this many parking spots in such a concentrated area in other parts of the city," he said. "I want the Park District and the police department to come up with a plan to discourage that many people from driving down there and parking."

Maybe the popularity of Montrose Beach, in part because of the availability of parking but also because of the expansive space and soccer fields, is an opportunity, not a problem. Trying to discourage people from going there - even suburbanites - seems counter-productive to me. Monetize!


Montrose Beach on Yelp.

Speaking Rahm
"Bill McCaffrey, who until Friday was Mayor Rahm Emanuel's deputy press secretary, is moving down the street to [CPS headquarters] as of Tuesday," the Sun-Times reports.

"McCaffrey could not be reached immediately Monday by phone for comment."


"Neither a mayoral spokeswoman nor a CPS spokesman would comment immediately on his move."


"No one will ever comment ever. On anything."


I just made up that last one. Or did I?


"McCaffrey's installation comes about three weeks after the approval of Ronald Iori as chief communications manager of CPS by the Board of Education, an executive office position that comes with a $165,000 salary."

From Iori's website:

"Ron has led teams of communicators and Public Affairs professionals as the senior executive at Kaplan Higher Education, (during a particularly intense period of regulatory scrutiny), Aramark (during a corporate campaign by a labor union) and H&R Block (during a proxy fight and its successful turnaround with critics on its refund loans)."

So he's anti-regulation, anti-union and pro-predatory lending.


"Iori filled a vacancy created when Becky Carroll resigned as chief communications officer in March, a few months after giving birth to her first child. Carroll was Emanuel's handpicked choice to head the schools office when he took power in 2011, to oversee his education message on a longer school day and the decision to close a historic number of neighborhood schools in mostly black neighborhoods. She has since founded a super PAC called 'Chicago Forward,' which has already raised at least $1 million, expected to support the mayor and his aldermanic allies."

A nice chunk of which will go to Carroll; loyalty to a political patron is always more financially rewarding than loyalty to the truth.


Cub Factor Exclusive!
What the Cubs are doing during their All-Star break.


* Migrant Boy Buried In Guatemala Hometown.

"A 15-year-old Guatemalan boy whose death became a symbol of the perils facing children attempting to illegally cross into the United States was buried in his hometown Saturday, amid prayers and tears from his family ...

"The boy's decomposed body was discovered on June 15 in the Rio Grande Valley, not far inside Texas from the border with Mexico. Around his neck was a rosary he had received as a gift for his first communion as a Roman Catholic. Scribbled inside his belt buckle was the phone number of an older brother in Chicago he had hoped to reach."

* Chicago Is Far From The Murder Capital Of The U.S.

Gee, I wonder how everyone got the wrong idea.

* Downstate Air Force Base Poised For Military Cybersecurity Boom.

The spying-industrial complex.

* Will Pot Save America's Small Towns?

The marijuana-industrial complex.

* Terra Cotta Renovations At Rialto To Start Soon.

"The clay-based building material is being produced by Shaw's Terra Cotta of Darwen, England, one of three terra cotta manufacturers worldwide."

* CIA Cafeteria Complaints.

"Bombshells abound, but the fact that the eyes and ears of the free world are forced to cope with a lack of individual ketchup packets is especially troubling.

* Why Net Neutrality Matters - And What You Can Do To Protect It.

With jokes.


The Beachwood Tip Line: Net neutral.


Posted on July 15, 2014

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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