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The [Tuesday] Papers

The Tribune discovers that "Obama" is just a brand cooked up by his political consultants; that his policy choices are fixed around that brand, not the other way around (and not always very well); and that his deepest political ties in Chicago reveal anything but a new kind of politician.

Welcome aboard!

Making of a Candidate
Today's Obama piece is the last in a series, which is actually quite valuable, though it would have been more helpful if this kind of reporting had been done before the image of Obama had been fixed in the public mind by gullible media twits.

Reform Tha' Police
"Mayor Richard Daley's proposal to revamp the controversial police Office of Professional Standards was advanced Monday by a City Council committee, but not before critics contended that it won't improve efforts to root out renegade officers," the Tribune reports.

"Under one 'very pernicious provision,' the officer must receive the name of the complainant and advance copies of all witness statements, [lawyer Locke] Bowman said, and all previous unsustained complaints cannot be used against an officer in an investigation, even if there are several."

Another provision allows accused officers to beat the shit out of their accusers for not keeping their mouths shut about their first beating.

Art Patrol
Sun-Times critic Kevin Nance isn't impressed with a 200-strong turnout of artists protesting a controversial proposed public art ordinance, but that's a far better turnout than I would have expected, knowing the habits of artists and the aesthetically unpleasing topic of public art ordinances.

Nonetheless, Nance reports that one proposed compromise would establish a Public Art Commission and wrest control of public art selection from the mayor's cultural affairs department, in exchange for reducing some of the bureaucratic and burdensome community participation requirements of the current system.

Stroger Salvo
Look! One of Todd Stroger's taxpayer-funded PR creatures wrote a letter for him and sent it to the Sun-Times!

That's cute.

Cubness
As foreseen by Cub Factor writer Marty Gangler, three of the Cubs four infield positions last night were played by second basemen: Mark DeRosa at third, Ryan Theriot at short, and Mike Fontenot at second.

And, of course, the Cubs had a second basemen in left field in Alfonso Soriano.

Now, to be fair, Theriot apparently came up as a shortstop. So he's playing out of position once removed. Kind of like Jacque Jones when he plays center. Which Soriano used to play too - briefly. As Marty says, just like Jim Hendry drew it up.

Tribness
Inspired by the Cubs' success, Tribune Company now wants its reporters in Baltimore to take photos too. Also, if they could deliver some papers on the way to work, put those new cover sheets on the TPS reports, and make some sales calls on the way home, that'd really help out. Ummkay?

Illigoyevich
"Forty-two states reported higher than expected revenues this year, allowing lawmakers to set aside money for long-term projects, reduce taxes or set up a rainy day fund,"The New York Times reports.

Illinois is not one of them.

Weather Monkeys
"Forecasters in Illinois and Wisconsin spent days checking out phony weather reports this spring after a weather-savvy person submitted more than 50 fake sightings to a National Weather Service Web site that meteorologists use to track severe weather," the Tribune reports.

"Over a six-week period this spring, someone filed reports, sometimes several in one day, describing felled trees, hail and tornadoes that never occurred."

Jobs Report
"Apple Unveils PC Browser."

The iGates is next.

Transit Buff
"A hefty 61% of those who work downtown get there on the CTA or Metra, the commuter train line, which has its own financial problems. In the Stevenson, Eisenhower, Kennedy and Lake Shore corridors, the CTA alone carries at least 40% of total rush-hour traffic," Greg Hinz writes in Crain's this week, in an interesting analysis of the transit system's problems.

"Years of grossly underfunding its employee pension plan, misdirecting capital funds, operating unreliable service with dirty vehicles, hiring City Hall rejects for middle-management jobs and extending its middle finger to the outside world have caught up with the agency," Hinz says. "Its credibility is gone, and though new CTA boss Ron Huberman is off to a promising start, he can only do so much in a month.

"Ironically, the CTA is in trouble now because then-President Frank Kruesi uncharacteristically chose to play nice last fall. Instead of justly declaring a budget crisis then -- a card he played prematurely in prior years -- the CTA and Regional Transit Authority assented to pleas to keep quiet until after Gov. Rod Blagojevich, Mayor Richard M. Daley and state and city lawmakers had been safely re-elected. The unstated promise from the pols: Help us now and we'll help you in the spring.

"That was then.

[snip]

"Oddly, it's been suburban Republicans, the chairs of the collar county boards, who've been willing to talk about new taxes for transit and roads.

"And Mr. Daley?

"While waiting to hear him address a business group last week, I suggested to his spokeswoman that transit is a lesser priority for him. She disputed that. "They are aware of what his priorities are in Springfield," she said.

"But when Mr. Daley spoke, he talked for a half-hour about the 2016 Olympics and how Chicago school kids are learning Chinese and other education issues. Transit came up, briefly, only when an audience member asked about it."

The Beachwood Tip Line: A regional solution.



Permalink

Posted on June 12, 2007


MUSIC - Blues Fest 2017.
TV - The Queen's Speech.
POLITICS - Psychopath CEOs Destroy Value.
SPORTS - Why Todd Frazier Should Lead Off.

BOOKS - The Fresh Air Fund's Complicated Racial Record.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - The Great Lakes Have Tsunamis.


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