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The [Wednesday] Papers

Now that Gatorgate is over, I'm going to try to ease myself back into the news which has been piling up over here due to procrastination, boredom, depression, frustration, and general so-sick-of-it-iveness.

Fortunately, given the heat wave moving in, I'll be working from the comfort of the Beachwood's Bucktown Benny Bureau today through Tuesday. Great timing, Dr. Nick!

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No Words

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Gag Rule Reflux
"The Trump administration's decision to immediately bar family planning funds to groups, like Planned Parenthood, that perform or refer women for abortion could force some states and organizations to abandon the federal program that pays for contraception for low-income women," Politico reports.

"The administration said it will move forward with its new family planning overhaul, which critics deride as an abortion 'gag rule,' as it faces ongoing legal challenges from nearly two dozen states and organizations, including Planned Parenthood, the largest single recipient of funding in the program, known as Title X. States and groups opposing the new rules say the policy creates serious gaps in access for the roughly 4 million women who depend on the $250 million-plus program for birth control, cancer screenings and other health services . . .

"Planned Parenthood, which serves more than 40 percent of the nation's Title X patients, confirmed Monday night it won't comply with the new rules. The group said Its clinics will start using their own emergency funds while it continues to fight the administration in court."

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In Illinois, Planned Parenthood will lose more than $3 million in funding, according to Crain's.

Planned Parenthood of Illinois has been preparing for such a rule since President Donald Trump took office, spokeswoman Julie Lynn said.

"There are emergency funds in place, but they won't be around forever," she added.

Will they at least be there until the next election?

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Also, I suspect Planned Parenthoods in many other states don't have the kind of emergency funds they do in Illinois, but maybe that's where the national organization comes in.

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Family Planning Clinics No Longer Allowed To Family Plan.

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A Tale of Two Prosecutors
A statement by Rev. Jesse Jackson (link added):

The violent death of Eric Garner in New York City five years ago was captured on a cellphone camera for all the world to see. As a New York City police officer pulled him to the sidewalk and applied an illegal chokehold, Garner's last words were also recorded and quickly became a nationwide rallying cry for police reform.

"I can't breathe," he gasped. "I can't breathe."

Garner's alleged offense? He was suspected of selling loose, untaxed cigarettes.

Now comes word that U.S. Attorney General William Barr has made the dubious decision not to bring federal civil rights charges against the officer, Daniel Pantaleo. In letting the officer walk free and clear, Barr exercised his prosecutorial discretion - a legal prerogative American prosecutors exercise every day across the country with little public fanfare.

But when Cook County States' Attorney Kim Foxx, a progressive African-American female prosecutor, applied the same legal logic - prosecutorial discretion - to drop charges in the overhyped, overcharged nonviolent Jussie Smollett case, Chicago turned upside down.

Foxx's decision led the evening news for weeks. It dominated the front pages of Chicago daily newspapers. National media outlets also got in on the hype. It was a media frenzy about a case in which no one was killed or even injured, and for which Smollett would not have served jail time. The Fraternal Order of Police held protests outside of Foxx's office, demanding she resign for doing something prosecutors do every day.

To be fair and balanced, FOP members should be packing their bags at this very moment, headed for Washington to hold a similar protest outside the office of Attorney General William Barr.

I'm not sure the analogy holds, but the FOP's hypocrisy certainly does.

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Remembering John Paul Stevens
"Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens died on Tuesday at 99. He was, in a thousand ways, the last gasp of an era," Slate reports.

Stevens was born on April 20, 1920, in Chicago, to a prosperous family that survived financial ruin in the 1930s. In the lobby of his family's downtown Chicago hotel, the young John Stevens crossed paths with the likes of Amelia Earhart and Charles Lindbergh. He lived his youth through the Jazz Age, the beginning and the end of Prohibition. He was, famously, in the stands of Wrigley Field with his father when Babe Ruth hit his called shot during the 1932 World Series.

After enlisting in the Navy and serving as a code breaker in World War II, Stevens was awarded a Bronze Star for his service. He was, in fact, the last sitting Supreme Court justice to have served in the military. He went to Northwestern Pritzker School of Law on the GI Bill and graduated magna cum laude with the highest GPA in the history of the school at that time.

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"Dissenting in Bush v. Gore he wrote - presciently - about the public loss of confidence in an impartial court:

The [majority opinion] can only lend credence to the most cynical appraisal of the work of judges throughout the land. It is confidence in the men and women who administer the judicial system that is the true backbone of the rule of law. Time will one day heal the wound to that confidence that will be inflicted by today's decision. One thing, however, is certain. Although we may never know with complete certainty the identity of the winner of this year's Presidential election, the identity of the loser is perfectly clear. It is the Nation's confidence in the judge as an impartial guardian of the rule of law.

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"His most recent book, The Making of a Justice: Reflections on My First 94 Years, was published this past May. In an interview just a couple of months ago, upon publication of that book, he expressed deep distress at the current political discourse: 'You wake up in the morning and you wonder what's happened.'"

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In the original, the link to the book was a link to Amazon. I've replaced that with a link to the publisher instead. I've long been annoyed by how book links to Amazon have become the default - I've been guilty of it here, too. Perhaps mostly it's because an Amazon link comes up first on searches. But why give Amazon the free referral? I wonder how much revenue - I mean, it can't be much, but I wonder - Amazon gets from links in news stories. Some sites, I know, acknowledge that they have referral relationships with Amazon and get a teeny, tiny slice of the pie from any sales that derive from such links, but I bet most are just simply organic. I'm trying to change my ways here on the Beachwood as I go, and I implore others to do so as well.

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Anyway, John Paul Stevens in the Beachwood . . .

* May 9, 2008:

"Lake County - fondly referred to by its denizens simply as 'the Region' - is where I was born and raised," Mike DeBonis wrote early this morning on the website of the Washington City Paper. "And it's pretty much where I got my conception of what urban politics is all about.

"If you've been watching cable TV, you've heard all about how Gary mayor Rudy Clay has promised to deliver big numbers to Barack Obama, for instance by busing high school kids to early-voting sites. What's not mentioned as much is that he's the county Democratic chairman, which means he essentially controls the election apparatus. He, have no doubt, is responsible for the fact that the vote has not been announced on time."

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"But there's no doubt that election shenanigans aren't too far in the Region's past. For a reminder, just look at Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens' opinion upholding the Indiana Voter ID act last week. For part of his reasoning, he cites the 2003 mayoral primary in East Chicago, which is just west of Gary, as proof "that not only is the risk of voter fraud real but that it could affect the outcome of a close election."

This was an unfortunate flub by Stevens, by the way, as described, again, by Slate.

After all, Stevens also writes in the same decision that "The only kind of voter fraud that SEA 483 addresses is in-person voter impersonation at polling places. The record contains no evidence of any such fraud actually occurring in Indiana at any time in its history."

* January 31, 2017: Kill the Lawyers,' A Line Misinterpreted.

Justice John Paul Stevens, dissenting in Walters v. National Association of Radiation Survivors:

"That function was, however, well understood by Jack Cade and his followers, characters who are often forgotten and whose most famous line is often misunderstood. Dick's statement ('The first thing we do, let's kill all the lawyers') was spoken by a rebel, not a friend of liberty. See W. Shakespeare, King Henry VI, Part II, Act IV, scene 2, line 72. As a careful reading of that text will reveal, Shakespeare insightfully realized that disposing of lawyers is a step in the direction of a totalitarian form of government." 473 U.S. 305, 371, n.24 (1985)."

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ChicagoReddit

Is anyone else not happy with how ABC7Chicago.com lays out their news stories? from r/chicago

This happened in Florida. Aren't any penises being cut off in Chicago?

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Local TV news is often quite non-local. As long as there is video of violence or titillation, they'll use it. They are not serious news organizations and should not be treated as such. They exploit "news" as entertainment - including above all, crime news. It's immoral. But no one covers them; there isn't a true media beat in town that actually covers the content of these shops. And so it goes.

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ChicagoGram

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ChicagoTube

1970 Ford Mustang Boss 302 - Gateway Classic Cars #1631 Chicago

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BeachBook

'Somewhere People Just Accepted What's Going On As Normal.'

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TweetWood
A sampling.

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The Beachwood McRibTipLine: Meat candy.



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Posted on July 17, 2019


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