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The [Wednesday] Papers

For completists, there was no column on Tuesday.

It once looked like issues surrounding CPD would be the ones that would most make Rahm Emanuel vulnerable in his re-election campaign, and that the presence of Garry McCarthy in the race would center much of the campaign discussion on the Laquan McDonald case and everything that has followed from it, including the seeming slow-walking of reform efforts. In such a campaign, Lori Lightfoot, who led a mayoral post-McDonald task force that many, including me, thought would be a whitewash but instead was an excoriating indictment of the city, would emerge as the most potent challenger given McCarthy's own involvement in the McDonald case, as well as his narrow appeal to basically the city's tiny Trump faction.

Now, however, it appears that CPS will take center stage in the campaign - barring whatever awfulness CPD or some other city agency or department engages in over the next 10 months, which is certainly more than enough time for evil to manifest all over the place.

But consider: The mayor's signature "achievement" and most dramatic reshaping of the city remains his massive school closures, and those closures have just been shown to have widely and deeply failed. The district's special education practices were so fucked up by cost-cutting consultants installed by the mayor's third superintendent, the second one indisposed in prison for enriching herself at the expense of some of the nation's poorest kids, that the state has taken over servicing the most vulnerable students in the city. The administration's privatization schemes have left the schools filthy. And now comes the Tribune investigation into widespread, horrific sexual abuse in CPS that the district ignored, kept secret or otherwise failed to properly address.

One might reasonably ask, How does a mayor survive that?

Then one remembers that this is Chicago - and that we asked ourselves that question repeatedly during Richard M. Daley's scandal-ridden 22 years running the city.

Still, Emanuel is a far more antagonizing figure than Daley, fair or not. Nobody really likes him - even his friends. He's in more electoral trouble than Daley ever was.

At the same time, as we also learned in the Daley years, a mayor here can get away with murder - at least figuratively, but maybe even literally depending on how far you stretch the meaning of the word (see the 1995 heat wave) or how you assess responsibility - and still win re-election if the opposition is nothing but clowns.

Now, one might think that the emergence of CPS as the central issue - and again, that could change - might elevate the candidacy of former schools chief Paul Vallas. I don't think so. For one thing, Vallas represents the past - and a past that might have been marginally better than the present, but one that isn't remembered fondly in many quarters of the city. For another thing, where do his votes come from? It's almost impossible to imagine - and correct me if I'm wrong - a challenger beating Emanuel without the support of the CTU and the SEIU. That eliminates Vallas.

Who else?

Cook County Clerk of the Circuit Court Dorothy Brown may have the church ladies, but her hiring is now under the watchful eye of a federal monitor, which pairs nicely with an almost inexcusably long five-year federal investigation into her office. (It better be a blockbuster, y'all!)

Cook County Commissioner Bridget Gainer might be a credible candidate - why, I don't know, but that's what I'm constantly told - if her sense of entitlement hadn't already boiled over.

Wealthy Willie Wilson will give hangers-on a nice payday and may even notch 10 percent of the vote (if he makes it to the finish line) but he's a joke-and-a-half.

Former superprincipal Troy LaRaviere may seem like a logical candidate to step into the CPS breech, but he has yet to show (or the media has yet to cover, I honestly don't know which) an aptitude for running the rest of the city. (Maybe he's really running to be the next CEO superintendent.)

Tech entrepreneur Neal Sales-Griffin is already a bust.

Police reform activist J'Mal Green will not save us. Chance The Rapper is not running.

That brings me back to Lightfoot. She seems to have the smarts.

Or someone not yet in the race. But it's getting pretty late for that.


And somehow the report about the school closings failure is a one-day story that has come and gone. You'd think by now I wouldn't be so shocked.


Meanwhile, the mayor focuses on ribbon-cuttings.

Sure, as a politician - that is to say, as a psychopath lacking empathy for others - you hardly want to dwell on bad news. As a human, though, you'd think Rahm would be seen calling an emergency meeting at CPS and fixing this now instead of CNA and everywhere else he's been seen this week chuckling and glad-handing.


The mayor today:


If a mayor fails in the forest and no one hears him, did he really fail at all?


New on the Beachwood . . .

The Weekend In Chicago Rock
Featuring: The Kozmic Kicks, The Skull, Of Wolves, Knee High Fox, Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks, The Goon Sax, Martin Rev, Inclination, Iron Years, False Figures, Cruz de Navajas, Ingested, Aborted, Merkules, Gretchen Erickson, David Byrne, Los Lobos, Los Lonely Boys, Ozomatli, Depeche Mode, Loverboy, Survivor, Kishi Bashi, and and Sneezy.



Immigration Sins Of The Past And The Forced Separation Of Families
"Our system has largely allowed ICE to detain persons who are potentially removable or excludable, for as long as it deems necessary, and to hold them in shocking, inhumane conditions."



Which Side Are You On? | Donald Trump And The NFL's Rich White Owners Vs. Colin Kaepernick, African Americans And People Against Unjustified Police Killings
"While the master of diversion is using attacks on black athletes to pump up his white base of support for the midterms and diverting attention from the Mueller investigation, we must keep our focus on the indiscriminate police killing of our young black people and the issue of racial justice."

See also: Man Takes Knee At Trump's Super Bowl Winner Replacement Celebration.


Wisconsin Dairy, Wheat & Gender
"A main reason the dairy industry didn't take off until the late 1800s was because it was considered 'women's work,' while growing wheat and other field crops was thought more appropriate for men.

"It took the better part of 30 years for Wisconsin farmers, men especially, to work their minds around the idea that it was appropriate for men to have something to do with cattle. It was a gender issue. I think I'm probably the first person, at least I haven't seen anybody else talk about it as a gender issue, but it was that, in my judgement. It just took a while for men to wrap their minds around it."






"Chicago" - Tommy Dorsey & His Orchestra, 1944 (V-Disc version).


A sampling.

When Guns Are Sold Illegally, ATF Is Lenient.

Law and order for some, but not others. Another mark of authoritarianism. A private army lurks in case of, say, impeachment.


Carpentersville Just Repealed Its English-Only Law.


Private Equity Bosses Took $200 Million Out Of Toys R Us And Crashed The Company; Lifetime Employees Got $0 In Severance.


A sampling.

There are far more ways - creative, innovative and exciting ways, including retooling analog methods, like crossword puzzles that have always provided more readership than a certain amount of news stories (and that's okay!) - to make money in the digital world than print. This scratches the surface.






The Beachwood Tronc Line: Finalize.


Posted on June 6, 2018

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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