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The Weekend Desk Report

"Charles Williams - a former high-ranking Chicago Police officer with no experience in the nuts-and-bolts of snow removal or garbage collection - has been chosen by Mayor Rahm Emanuel to be the city's $157,092-a-year Streets and Sanitation commissioner," the Sun-Times reports.

That's okay, a former investment banker is now running the police department.


"A 2007 finalist for the police superintendent's job that ultimately went to career FBI Agent Jody Weis, Williams will become the highest-profile African American in an Emanuel cabinet with a glaring shortage of blacks."

That's okay, diversity is just something Democrats demand of others, not themselves.


"'Obviously, that won't be missed on people but, first and foremost, he knows how to get the garbage picked up, the snow plowed, the trees trimmed, the rodent baiting done ... and see through the type of reforms and management that I want to see,' Emanuel said in an exclusive interview with the Chicago Sun-Times."

I wonder how it feels to be the reporter and the paper routinely targeted as chumps for exclusive interviews. Then again, Rahm works there too.

And they all hang out together.

Still, Fran Spielman did the right thing asking this:

"But how can Williams know snow removal and garbage collection when he's never done it?"

Unfortunately, she committed the common journalistic sin of bad interviewing techniques by attaching a second, lousy question that the mayor answered instead:

"Isn't Emanuel taking a risky political gamble in the hope that it will be another unseasonably mild winter?"

Um, what?

Emanuel, better schooled in the journalistic arts than most of his media adversaries, replied thusly:

"'Tom handled a tough winter. Tom handled a light winter. You hope for that whether Tom is there or Charles is there,' said the mayor, who acknowledged having texted Byrne at 2 a.m. during snowstorms warning him to be on the side streets by 4 a.m."

Note how the first question - the important one - was never answered.

Note, too, how Rahm "acknowledged" a text that demonstrates how on top of the action he is - and got that into the paper. Bravo.

And that, folks, is why it's a Sun-Times "exclusive."


Interestingly, Williams was not available for comment. He was probably busy getting briefed on how many snowplows the city has.


And this:

When he walked into public housing, it was a shambles. He had a lot of building of community trust to do and did just that. He's used to dealing with all sorts of people and has a very even temperament," a police source said of Williams.

"He's a guy who expects people to be accountable and will hold folks accountable. But, he's going to do it in a way that's respectful of the individual and institutions."

All of which may be true, but why is an anonymous source - perhaps one supplied by City Hall - the only one willing to say it?

If you can't go on the record doing your boss's bidding, you shouldn't be allowed anywhere near the record.

Worst Campus Ever
"A study conducted by the University of Chicago found that for an increasing number of people, accessing social media is actually more enjoyable than having sex," Technorati reports.

So much to unpack!

First, that's highly believable if those studied are University of Chicago students, though it's hard to believe most of them are having sex in the first place.

On the other hand, U of C students aren't much likely to be interested in social media.

Also, not true if sex with themselves counts.

Or actually, still true.


Oh, the poll was actually conducted in Germany. Nevermind.

But still true.

Sports Authority
"Officials at the state agency that operates U.S. Cellular Field will meet Monday to continue discussing whether to hire an executive director, but Mayor Rahm Emanuel wants to scrap the whole process and begin anew," the Tribune reports.

"Emanuel's suggestion comes as Gov. Pat Quinn is standing by his choice to install his chief spokeswoman to run the Illinois Sports Facilities Authority despite questions about her qualifications.

"Before joining the Quinn administration as a budget spokeswoman three years ago, Kelly Kraft was a TV reporter. The Tribune reported last week that Kraft filed for personal bankruptcy in 2009."

Really, we can't do better? There must be a ton of more qualified candidates.

"Meanwhile, sources said another figure with financial baggage emerged as a possible candidate: Rufus Williams, a former Chicago Board of Education president who returned to private financial management after he resigned in 2009.

"Williams came under fire after a Chicago Public Schools inspector general report showed Williams and former board president Michael Scott spent freely on travel, office artwork, dining and donations to a variety of charities."


The route map accompanying this Tribune article helpfully shows downtown McDonald's locations for competitors needing a Big Mac to fuel their run.


The Weekend Desk Tip Line: Streetsy, sansy.


The College Football Report: Fail Whales And Felonies.


The Sound Opinions Weekend Listening Report: "Jim and Greg don their stethoscopes and become the Rock Doctors. Their patient? Acclaimed comic book writer and illustrator Mark Crilley. They'll see if they can't give this self-proclaimed musical softie a harder edge. Plus they review the new chart-topping album from Mumford & Sons."


The CAN TV Weekend Viewing Report: CAN TV brings you local, relevant issues from Chicago's neighborhoods and communities. See what's happening around the city in education, the arts, government, cultural events, social services and community activities.

Community Forum: Chicago Alliance Against Sexual Exploitation


Rachel Durchslag shares the work of CAASE to combat sexual exploitation and sex trafficking through policy reform, legal services, and engaging high-school-age men to work against sexual exploitation.

Saturday, October 6 at 7:30 p.m. on CAN TV21
30 min


Rap Sessions: Hip Hop Activism in the Obama/ Tea Party Era


MC and activist Chuck D joins this town hall meeting exploring the impact of the election of Obama, the emergence of the Tea Party, and the shifting national political landscape on hip-hop's ability to galvanize young people.

Sunday, October 7 at 9 a.m. on CAN TV21
1 hr 30 min


Paramilitarism & the Assault on Democracy in Haiti


Author Jeb Sprague investigates the origins of paramilitary violence in Haiti and its impact on the country's government since its first democratically-elected president took office in 1990.

Sunday, October 7 at 10:30 a.m. on CAN TV21
2 hr


Hispanics in Philanthropy: GameChangers in Chicago


Jesus "Chuy" Garcia joins this discussion of methods for increasing the low level of U.S. foundation funding specifically targeting Latino communities in the U.S. and Latin America.

Sunday, October 7 at 12:30 p.m. on CAN TV21
2 hr


Posted on October 6, 2012

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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