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The [Tuesday] Papers

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IDES Editorial
"If you're one of the more than a million Illinoisans out of work during the pandemic, you know all about the pall of uncertainty. How long will this last? What shape will the job market take once the economy gins up? In the meantime, how am I going to get by?" the Tribune editorializes today.

"The angst of being unemployed is bad enough. What's making it worse for so many Illinoisans is a series of mistakes at the agency responsible for processing unemployment claims. Gov. J.B. Pritzker ordered the shutdown of entire swaths of the Illinois economy. Making sure those now-unemployed workers can access unemployment benefits should have been a top priority. Instead, claims have been so mishandled, and one lawmaker is threatening to launch a recall of the governor."

Look, I've been as hard as anyone on the governor (see the item Illinois' Amazingly Awesome Unemployment Office) when it comes to his unemployment agency - and his laughable claims about how well everything is going with it. But the Tribune's sudden (and opportunistic) empathy for those out of work is a little hard to take. (Start with your own shop, for example.)

And the edit board can't help but slide disingenuous attack lines into its piece. For example, the private sector shut down entire swaths of the economy before Pritzker did. And a lawmaker threatening a recall campaign based on the unemployment office's poor performance? That would be the not-exactly widely-respected Allen Skillicorn. And his threat is nine days old and, well, ridiculous. It's not gonna happen, nor should it.

But what bothers me even more than those failures to practice respectable journalism is the failure to acknowledge that virtually every state unemployment office in these United States is having the same difficulties.

I'm as frustrated as anyone trying to get a claim processed, but my bigger frustration is with a governor repeatedly claiming there is no backlog and everything is going swimmingly. Clearly, it's not. I can otherwise understand why shit is so fucked up - though the Trib is right about one thing: It's not clear at all that fixing the mess is a top priority of Pritzker's. Or not top enough.

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P.S.: I hate calling that office by its official name: the Illinois Department of Employment Security. It's the unemployment office. We all know it. Changing its name - I assume a governor did that at some point, though I didn't find it in a cursory search before posting this - isn't going to make people think about unemployment differently.

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P.P.S.: An old newspaper saying: There are no new stories, only new reporters.

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Brown Blunder
"Chicago Police Supt. David Brown said cabin fever stemming from the state's stay-at-home order contributed to the most violent Memorial Day weekend Chicago has experienced since 2015," the Sun-Times reports.

How does he know? Did the police interview the shooters to find out why they came out shooting this weekend?

"A total of 49 people were shot, 10 of whom died."

I hate to say it, but that sounds like Memorial Day weekend in Chicago, stay-at-home order or not. Especially given the nice weather.

But maybe Brown is trying to deflect from his own apparent strategic blunder.

"Brown acknowledged the department did not, as has been the case in years past, send out 1,000 extra officers to patrol the streets over the weekend."

Now, I don't necessarily believe more police on the street prevents crime. The research doesn't really show that. But . . .

"He noted more officers will be on the streets over summer weekends, including in prominent spots like on the CTA and along the lakefront."

Was this not a summer weekend?

"Chief of Operations Fred Waller said police are implementing a 'corridor strategy' that will place cops at highly visible locations on main streets around city this summer."

But fewer cops. By, like, a thousand.

"The idea is that would-be offenders will see marked CPD vehicles as they enter a residential area and think twice," Waller said. "If offenders go through with a criminal act, our officers will be there waiting for them as they attempt to flee."

Well, it didn't work!

It also doesn't make much sense. A corridor strategy, like a hotspot strategy, tends to just push crime elsewhere. Also, again, if police visibility prevents crime, you'd think we'd have seen that thousand officers on the streets. Or at least a thousand police cars parked near entrances to residential areas.

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Also, what the hell?:

Someone oughta pull the traffic records at those intersections. Assignment Desk, activate!

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New on the Beachwood today . . .

'Here We Go Again' | Richest Hospitals Sitting On Billions In Cash Got Golden Bailouts Compared To Those Serving The Poor
"If you ever hear a hospital complaining they don't have enough money, see if they have a venture fund."

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Kennedy Center Couch Concert: Jon Langford & The Dill Costa Quartet From The Hideout
Watch!

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Armchair Vacation: Chicago!
Including the Kungsholm Restaurant and it's miniature puppet opera.

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Chicago-Based Wilson Now The Official Game Ball Of The NBA
Sucks to be Spalding.

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Digital Rights During The Pandemic
"No matter who you are, this collection will likely be relevant to your understanding of the pandemic and society's response to it."

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A 360° Great Train Story
A cool way to take a scale-model round-trip between Chicago and Seattle.

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ChicagoReddit

Wholesome Neighbor Giving Away Masks in Bucktown from r/chicago

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ChicagoGram

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ChicagoTube

Memorial Day Chicago 2020 In 4K Drone Footage

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TweetWood
A sampling of the delight and disgust you can find @BeachwoodReport.

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The Beachwood Tipping Point Line: Redlines, deadlines.



Permalink

Posted on May 26, 2020


MUSIC - This Summer's Soundtrack Started Here.
TV - M*A*S*H Theme Song's Weird History.
POLITICS - SCOTUS Blesses Church + State.
SPORTS - Tip Your Cap To The Negro Leagues.

BOOKS - The Legacy Of Racism For Children.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - The Chagall Windows.


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