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The Weekend Desk Report

For completists, there was no Friday column.

"Everyday in Illinois is 'Groundhog Day,'" Chuck Sweeny writes for the Rockford Register Star.

We wake up each morning and Illinois still doesn't have a budget. Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner gives the same tired speech - give me pro-business measures and then you can have a budget - and Democratic House Speaker Mike Madigan issues the same old retort - give me a budget and then we'll talk about your union-busting ideas.

I didn't bother listening to the governor's third annual "budget address" Wednesday. Instead I read the transcript provided by Rauner's office. The governor said the proposal was balanced; Democrats scoffed because the budget Rauner presented features $37 billion in spending against $33 billion in revenue, a report by The Associated Press said.

As Sweeny notes, it's Rauner's third - of three - dead-on-arrival budget proposal.


And that AP report?

"Gov. Bruce Rauner is proposing what he calls a balanced budget. But expected spending outstrips revenue by at least $4 billion. And it could be more."

Bear in mind that Rauner continues to rail against what he calls decades of phony state budgets with imbalances the phony politicians have ignored.

"Rauner budget director Scott Harry says lawmakers can help fill the gap by agreeing to unspecified spending cuts, tax increases and economic growth."

Right. And those unspecified spending cuts, tax increases and economic growth figures just happen to equal the balance of what was needed to, um, balance the budget. If the revenue shortage came in higher, they'd just adjust the number!


Meanwhile . . .


Of course, there are a lot of scripts that get rehearsed day after day after day around here. For example, here's two from the Trib:

Screen Shot 2017-02-18 at 1.24.49 PM.png


Screen Shot 2017-02-18 at 1.25.59 PM.png


And you know what happens when scripts are endlessly repeated? The underlying issues get normalized and real solutions remain submerged.


Beachwood Photo Booth: Old Glory
Now departing.

Where Is Accountability For The Troubled SAT?
Oversight of the College Board and its CEO, David Coleman, has been opaque, as members of the Board of Trustees have proved unwilling to discuss how the organization is handling its problems.

Beachwood Sports Radio: Butler Or Bust?
The popular consensus that the Bulls should trade Jimmy Buckets really grinds Coach Coffman's gears. Plus: Blackhawks Bye, Blame Barnwell, Joe Maddoning, and Coach Coffman Is Only Half-In On The White Sox Rebuild, Too.

The Week In Chicago Rock
Featuring: Lordi, Japandroids, Tove Lo, Syleena Johnson, Tom Hamilton's American Babies, Hamilton Leithauser, The Flashbulb, and Micky Dolenz.


The Sound Opinions Weekend Listening Report: "The Gotobeds are known for outrageous stage antics and a biting sense of humor. But behind that is a lyrical sophistication and tight musicianship. The Pittsburgh post-punk band joins Jim and Greg for a raucous performance in the studio. Plus, a review of the new album from Chicago rapper Lupe Fiasco."


Weekend BeachBook

Another repeating script: Huge tax breaks for ultra-wealthy people.


Weekend TweetWood


The Ferro Effect.



Yeah, Brian Williams doing this interview is not the best look.


The Weekend Tronc Line: Pernicious.


Posted on February 18, 2017

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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