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The [Tuesday] Papers

1. Kyle Orton is who we thought he was. In Bear Monday Tuesday, the city's best weekly Bears post-mortem by our very own Jim Coffman.

2. "A businessman first and journalist never, Radler made his reputation here not by finding ways to channel money toward improved news coverage and investigative projects, but on shutting down escalators in the old Sun-Times building to save on electricity," the Sun-Times says in an editorial this morning upon the sentencing of their former publisher.

Of course, no one spoke up when this - and far worse including the complete perversion of editorial integrity which the paper still hasn't owned up to - was going on. Except to say "Thank you, sir, may I have another!"

3. "The 1 percent tax on downtown restaurant meals that helped expand McCormick Place could move north to the area surrounding Wrigley Field to finance either renovation of the landmark stadium or improvements in the neighborhood, officials said Monday," the Sun-Times reports.

"Tribune Co. senior vice-president Crane Kenney, who oversees the Cubs, said extending the northern boundary of the downtown restaurant district at least seven blocks - from Diversey to Waveland - is one of several possibilities to finance stadium renovations if the Illinois Sports Facilities Authority agrees to a Tribune Co. plan to acquire and renovate Wrigley Field."

How perfect, seeing as how the structure of the Sam Zell deal will virtually free Tribune Company from having to pay any corporate taxes.

That also dovetails nicely with raising the price of the newspaper ahead of the massive cuts that are on the way. The Chicago Tribune: On Your Side!

4. "In a piece mailed in New Hampshire - and including citations from Iowa newspapers - Obama's piece states 'Slipping in the polls, Clinton is now attacking Obama,'" Lynn Sweet reports.

To save money, the Obama campaign had the printer just Photoshop some "Slipping in the polls, Obama is now attacking Clinton" mailers it had laying around.

5. Catch up with our Twelve Days of Beachwood Christmas series . . . and visit our YouTube page.

6. Joe Lieberman's endorsement of John McCain is far less newsworthy than Barack Obama's forgotten endorsement of Joe Lieberman - who was running against an anti-war candidate who eventually won the party's nomination but lost the general election when Lieberman ran as an independent. Oops.

I mean, there's war and then there's politics.

7. The city's best blog, Whet Moser's Chicagoland, has disappeared from the Reader's website. Please return it unharmed and no one will get hurt.

8. Neil Steinberg's daily chuckle not so daily.

9. "Although Mayor Daley's father once dismissed questions of his sons' city deals with a short expletive, on Friday the current mayor sidestepped reporters seeking comment as he attended a meeting in Racine, Wis.," the Tribune reported over the weekend.

"Jacquelyn Heard, Daley's press secretary, said that Daley had not been scheduled to take media questions on Friday when the Chicago Sun-Times first reported the contracts involving Patrick Daley."

Well, guess what, Jackie? Reporters hadn't been scheduled to ask questions about the contracts on Friday until the story appeared! Shit happens!

"Heard said Daley learned of the contract issue this week, but she declined to characterize how he reacted to the news, noting that his son soon could be serving in harm's way."

Hiding behind his son's military deployment is vile.

"But when the company filed its economic disclosure statement with the city in February 2004 and listed three owners as owning 100 percent of the company, it failed to disclose the ownership interest of Patrick Daley and [his cousin Robert] Vanecko. The disclosure was required at the time."

So a law was broken? Is Patrick Daley under investigation?

"In a Thursday memo to his employees, company Chairman Robert Bobb acknowledged that disclosure statements filled out by his predecessors 'contain a number of mistakes or oversights,'" the Sun-Times reported.

You can't do simple paperwork but you want to inspect our sewers?

Maybe stick to something you're more qualified for, like Blue Line inspections.

"The mayor refused to answer questions about his son," the Sun-Times noted. "That left Heard to insist that Daley knew nothing about his son's involvement in the sewer inspection deals until the Sun-Times starting asking questions."

How does Heard know? She won't say.

"I think I'm going to avoid peeing on his family," Ald. Toni Preckwinkle said. "If this was one of his minions, I'd probably have some comment. But it's his kid, so I'll let it pass."

What? That's exactly backwards. It's ten times worse because it's his kid.

After 18 years of this, isn't it time one of the papers ran a front-page editorial under large bold type stating "We've Had Enough"?

10. Every day that passes without an alderman holding a press conference and stating he or she has had enough and announces a reform drive is another day we do not have a true independent on the city council.

11. "It's incredible to me that any one would believe the mayor would stake his reputation and all that he has worked for in an effort ot help anyone, even a family member, get business," Heard told the Tribune. "It's his reputation and he wouldn't risk it."

The Tribune did not note whether Heard was howling with laughter when she said it.

12."According to the Daily Herald, 'the battles were nearly over when the arguing turned to a sophomoric joke about oral sex.' Well, sort of," Chicagoist reports. "Jim Clark, chief of staff for Commissioner Timothy Schneider, says it was more like sophomoric laughing at an innocent comment. According to Clark, Beavers said Gene Moore got 'down on his knees and begged' for the deal struck between Moore, Schneider and Silvestri, and Schneider said 'something like, Nobody got down on their knees in front of me.' And then all the commissioners laughed like a bunch of seventh graders. 'There was a lot of tension throughout the meeting,' Clark says."

13. Ben Eason, new overlord of the Reader, has expanded his holdings with the idea of building a national advertising platform out of a string of local weeklies. Isn't that the same idea that doomed the Tribune Co.'s failed acquisition of Times-Mirror? I seem to recall New City trying the same thing with a national online portal of local weeklies as well.

14. "I'm saying these guys are already at the top of their game. They've got huge audiences, their brand is loved in their markets - why would you change anything? We're not here to (cannibalize) the place."
- Ben Eason, in August

15. The view from Minnesota:

"Bears Dust Off Orton Just In Time To Aid Purple's Push: The Chicago defense was up to the task, but its former third-string quarterback was not."

The Beachwood Tip Line: First-string.


Posted on December 18, 2007

MUSIC - Lyric Opera Strike Settled.
POLITICS - USA Today's Op-Ed Disaster.
SPORTS - SportsMonday: Come On, Vic!

BOOKS - Chicago Book Haul: The Dial.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Chicagoetry: West Town Blues.

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