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The Week in WTF

1. Chicago cops, WTF?

As a Chicagoan, you can be embarrassed that there are too many criminals and too few cops. That stinks. You can be embarrassed by integrity-challenged politicians who use the public pocketbook as their own piggy bank. There's enough WTF outrage to go around.

But it's really embarrassing to be embarrassed by the cops themselves. What-the-royal-EF?

The picket lines this week against chief Jody Weis show a grotesque myopia. Let us introduce Chicago police to the concept of irony, which, as we know, was killed in 1998, but has been rebirthed in Chicago ever since.

There were no police picketers against the rampant corruption and scandals that brought Weis to town in the first place. WTF, officers, we all know you stand steadfastly against attempts to clean up your own force. Your silence confirmed it. How many really bad cops have been defended down to the last dime by the FOP? By you?

Even you should know a rotten apple tree can't ask one of its own apples to clean up the rottenness. The FOP enables the spreading virus and complains when the tree surgeon arrives to fix the blight.

Plus, anyone who has ever raised a 2-year-old can recognize silly whining when they hear it. Grown-up police officers should act grown-up instead of staging a WTF publicity stunt while demanding anonymity when reporters ask for their names. It takes large metallic balls to yell "coward" at Weis from behind the veil of weak-kneed reporters. When did cops get the right to protest other public officials and claim anonymity?

Here's WTF's position. Shut the EF up, and do your job.

2. Bill Brady, WTF?

WTF is ready to admit that Gov. Pat Quinn (D-Dense) is a lost ball in the tall electoral weeds. He could make us yearn for you know who.

Sure, GOP foe Bill Brady's social concepts would embarrass the Cro-Magnon Party, but well-developed frontal lobes aren't all that necessary or attractive. Anyway, Brady is credentialed as a great business manager, an acumen he presumably will use to fix Illinois.

WTF is not sure how a "giant home-building firm" with 34 employees is consistent factually, but we'll assume "giant home-building firm" means something else in Bloomington.

So let us delve into that patch of murky water.

Dean Vallas, the GOP finance co-chair in Cook County and brother of Paul, has this glowing tribute to Brady's bidnes sperience.

"[He's] been in business (a family home construction company) for his whole life, has had to meet a payroll (and) knows what it's like not to sleep on Friday night because you can't make the Saturday payroll."

Thanks, Dean. Unless Brady paid everyone in cash, that would seem to suggest that Gov-in-waiting Brady had written bad checks. If we're reading that accurately, sleepless-on-Friday about checks-delivered-on-Saturday would seem to indicate there's a bank shortage. Maybe he's waiting for the Bank Fairy to arrive.

Or this could just be a case of Dean Vallas being seriously dopey in an idle moment.

Plus, we're not all hyper about financial ledgerdomain because that's how the Illinois budget works, even in good times.

As Wikipedia notes, a check written with insufficient funds is also called a "bad check or dishonored check, or more colloquially, a bounced check, cold check, rubber check, or hot check."

Dontcha just love Wikipedia? WTF, yes.

3. Lower Wacker Drive "garbage" pick-up, WTF?

In case you were driving along Lower Wacker Drive this week and saw city sanitation trucks being used to tote away bags of garbage, here's what WTF suspects.

The "garbage" being removed wasn't actually trash. It was the meager, pitiful property of homeless people who sleep under the bridge. It was only the remnants of lives gone wrong being dismissed at an even lower, less human level than their awful lives already are.

Thus, we have found the Chicago solution to homelessness. Roust it. Pulverize it. Grind their lives into even more unrecognizable and more unendurable rubble. Humiliate them in a way none of us would accept if it happened to us. And then we throw it away much as we have thrown them away.

It we make it invisible, we make homelessness go away. It's so effing predictable and even more sad. WTF.

4. Moral character, WTF?

The Chicago police have changed their rules for receiving the official press passes that are the coin of the realm for breaking news reporters. This pass gets you into places that real people aren't allowed. And Lord knows we don't want normal people in those places.

Okay, we're happy about that because it recognizes that Internet-only scribblers are real reporters, too.

But that's not the real news. Egads, they've also dropped the requirement that reporters must show they are of good moral character to get the little pass.

Why were we not informed? Why have we not discussed this?

When was it that reporters were ever of good moral character?

WTF has never been asked about our moral fitness. If we had, we'd likely fail any test because, frankly, we have never been morally fit and don't plan to be in any foreseeable future.

What does moral fitness have to do with anything? We have always been reprobates, ne'er-do-wells and vaguely unseemly. It's who we are supposed to be. It makes us unafraid of power because we're indifferent to being seen as grubby lowlifes.

-

David Rutter is the former publisher/editor of the Lake County News-Sun, a Sun-Times Media property. He welcomes your comments.



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Posted on September 17, 2010


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