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« November 2017 | Main

December 11, 2017

The Paradise Papers: An Odd Call From The Bermuda Government

Dear Steve,

This week our reporter Will Fitzgibbon offers a bit of insight into what it's like being an investigative reporter on the Paradise Papers. Will, along with several of ICIJ's partners, traveled to Bermuda in the months leading up to our project release. But he received a bizarre phone call when he returned to D.C.

willparadise.jpg

On a more serious note, many were left asking "Where is Luxembourg?" after the European Parliament finally released their tax haven blacklist last week. The list included places like Panama and Barbados but still left many scratching their heads over European omissions.

Still in Europe, the effects of the earlier Panama Papers project - some 18 months after publication - are still having an impact with a state bank raided in Brussels.

Stay tuned for more this week. We'll be back in your inbox a bit sooner than normal!

Amy Wilson-Chapman
ICIJ's Community Engagement Editor

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Previously in the Paradise Papers:
* 'Paradise Papers' Reveal Tax Avoidance, Shady Dealings Of World's Rich And Powerful.

* Just How Much Money Is Held Offshore? Hint: A SHIT-TON.

* Development Dreams Lost In The Offshore World.

* Keeping Offshore 'Hush Hush,' But Why?

* Tax Havens Are Alive With The Sound Of Music.

* Today In Tax Avoidance Of The Ultra-Wealthy.

* Go To Town With This Offshore Leaks Database.

* The Paradise Papers: The View From Africa And Asia.

* The Paradise Papers: The End Of Elusion For PokerStars.

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Previously in the Panama Papers:
* The Panama Papers: Remarkable Global Media Collaboration Cracks Walls Of Offshore Tax Haven Secrecy.

* The Panama Papers: Prosecutors Open Probes.

* The [Monday] Papers.

* Adventures In Tax Avoidance.

* Mossack Fonseca's Oligarchs, Dictators And Corrupt White-Collar Businessmen.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! They're All In It Together.

* Meet The Panama Papers Editor Who Handled 376 Reporters In 80 Countries.

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Previously in tax scammage:
* Deepwater Horizon Settlement Comes With $5.35 Billion Tax Windfall.

* Offshoring By 29 Companies Costs Illinois $1.2 Billion Annually.

* Government Agencies Allow Corporations To Write Off Billions In Federal Settlements.

* The Gang Of 62 Vs. The World.

* How The Maker Of TurboTax Fought Free, Simple Tax Filing.

* $1.4 Trillion: Oxfam Exposes The Great Offshore Tax Scam Of U.S. Companies.

* How Barclay's Turned A $10 Billion Profit Into A Tax Loss.

* Wall Street Stock Loans Drain $1 Billion A Year From German Taxpayers.

* German Finance Minister Cries Foul Over Tax Avoidance Deals.

* Prosecutor Targets Commerzbank For Deals That Dodge German Taxes.

* A Schlupfloch Here, A Schlupfloch There. Now It's Real Money.

* How Milwaukee Landlords Avoid Taxes.

* Study: 32 Illinois Fortune 500 Companies Holding At Least $147 Billion Offshore.

* Watch Out For The Coming Tax Break Trickery.

* When A 'Tax Bonanza' Is Actually A Huge Corporate Tax Break.

* The Hypocrisy Of Corporate Welfare: It's Bigger Than Trump.

* Oxfam Names World's Worst Tax Havens Fueling 'Global Race To Bottom.'

* Offshore Tax Havens Cost Average Illinois Small Business $5,789 A Year.

* State Tax Incentives To Corporations Don't Work.

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Previously in carried interest, aka The Billionaire's Loophole:
* Patriotic Millionaires Vs. Carried Interest.

* The Somewhat Surreal Politics Of A Private Equity Tax Loophole Costing Us Billions (That Obama Refused To Close Despite Pledging To Do So).

* Fact-Checking Trump & Clinton On The Billionaire's Tax Break.

* Despite Trump Campaign Promise, Billionaires' Tax Loophole Survives Again.

* Carried Interest Reform Is a Sham.

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 4:09 PM | Permalink

SportsMonday: The Blackhawks Smell A Little

At this point, about all I can say is the Hawks don't stink.

They also aren't good but at least a fan doesn't automatically think of them when they catch a whiff of the areas where hockey players change, which are known for being even more pungent than the average locker room.

The Blackhawks finally played a decent period (the third) in the middle of their easiest schedule stretch of the season and that enabled them to knock off the Arizona Coyotes 3-1 on Sunday night. On Friday they rallied to barely edge the Buffalo Sabres 3-2 on an overtime goal with :04.9 remaining.

And just like that, the Hawks have combined with the Bears and the Bulls for a five-game local winning streak after the group lost 20 in a row together (Bulls 10, Bears 5 and Hawks 5).

In the first two time frames at the United Center last night and just about throughout their victory on Friday, the team continued its lousy play of the last couple weeks.

And then last night the Hawks could barely complete a pass during the first period and weren't much better in the second. Finally, with a dozen minutes remaining, the Hawks broke through. And it was the fourth line that led them, again.

Tommy Wingels scored his second huge goal in as many games to put the Blackhawks on the board.

And after the Coyotes scored what could have been a demoralizing goal a few minutes later, Patrick Kane finally got untracked.

The leading scorer who had not scored even an assist in the previous four games first found Hawks leading scorer Artem Anisimov for a deadly wrister.

Then he worked a perfect 2-on-1 with Nick Schmaltz, culminating in a one-timer that put the game away.

Schmaltz is a guy who has shown real potential as a playmaker so far this year. He is one of the young players who will have to come through if the Blackhawks are to avoid falling off a cliff (in the standings) as the championship core (Kane, Jonathan Toews, Duncan Keith and Brent Seabrook) ages.

Kane's scoring plays were especially welcome because in these last half-dozen games or so, the Hawks' fourth line, led by Wingels and Peter Bouma, has been more dangerous offensively than their first (the one that features Kane of course). And don't get me started about Toews and Brandon Saad. Actually, do get me started.

Saad has been a flat-out bust so far this year, making fans pine for the little-big gun, i.e. Artemi Panarin, who was sent to Columbus to make Saad's second time around with the Hawks possible. The big winger does a good job of taking care of his defensive responsibilities, but the hoped-for offensive chemistry with Toews has not happened - at all.

And so the Hawks find themselves sixth in their division even after winning a couple games in a row. It is nothing a little winning streak can't fix, but that isn't going to happen if the team doesn't find a way to raise its game, and soon.

The bright side is the team's young defensemen, Jan Rutta and Gustav Forsling. The latter almost single-handedly saved the Hawks from what would have been an embarrassing loss to the Sabres, who have totaled all of seven wins this season.

First, with just under 3:30 remaining in regulation and shorthanded, he sent a shot-pass toward Wingels that the forward tipped into the net to draw the Hawks even.

Then in overtime, Forsling expertly waited until the Sabres goaltender was screened before firing the game-winner between his legs.

Next up for the Hawks are the weak Florida Panthers on Tuesday evening. Then they have to start playing real teams again. You should be able to tell if they are playing better by paying attention to the smell.

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 10:35 AM | Permalink

Political Odds

For entertainment purposes only. And office pools. Updated as events warrant.

The chance that . . .

Bruce Rauner gets the GOP nomination for governor: 75 percent. Jeanne Ives is nuts, but she'll take a chunk out of Rauner's hide.

Jeanne Ives gets the GOP nomination: 25 percent. She's nuts, but she'll take a chunk out of Rauner's hide.

Bruce Rauner is re-elected: 30 percent. Down five ticks on intra-party dissatisfaction. But the Dem nominee ain't gonna be an especially inspiring figure.

The Dem nominee wins the governorship: 65 percent. It's gonna be a Dem year, let's face it.

Sam McCann, running as an independent, wins the governorship: 5 percent. But let's see if he brings it.

column_pol_odds.gifJ.B. Pritzker gets the Dem nomination: 50%. Dem constituencies falling into place.

Chris Kennedy gets the Dem nomination: 25 percent. Up five ticks; gaining strength as a candidate, but too late.

Daniel Biss gets the Dem nomination: 25 percent. True progressive-ish alternative could roll up the anti-billionaire vote.

Bob Daiber gets the Dem nomination: 0 percent. Who?

Tio Hardiman gets the Dem nomination: 0 percent. The new Dock Walls.

Robert Marshall gets the Dem nomination: 0 percent. The new Bob Daiber.

Ameya Pawar gets the Dem nomination: 0 percent. Unless everyone else flames out; he'll work hard, but please. OUT

Scott Drury gets the Dem nomination: 0 percent. Wrong year for an anti-Madigan platform; we need him on that wall. OUT

Alex Paterakis gets the Dem nomination: 0 percent. Who? OUT

Chuy Garcia gets the Dem nomination to replace Luis Gutierrez: 50 percent. The fix is in.

Sol Flores gets the Dem nomination: 30 percent. A successful social services leader who happens to be a woman sure sounds good; the grassroots candidate.

Carlos Rosa gets the Dem nomination: 20 percent. An enthusiastic base but, fair warning, he'll come out the race worse off than he went into it.

Joe Moreno gets the Dem nomination: 10 percent. Almost lost his aldermanic seat last time around; the shine is off the hipster fauxgressive.

Neli Vazquez-Rowland: 0 percent. Gold Coast resident unlikely to fare well in this district. OUT

Ray Lopez gets the Dem nomination: 0 percent. No-name alderman with no good reason to run.

Richard Gonzalez gets the Dem nomination: 0 percent. Police sergeant backed by state Rep. Luis Arroyo unlikely to get traction.

Bobby Rush (D-AT&T) gets the Dem nomination for re-election to Congress: 90 percent. Rush should go, but Howard Brookins unlikely to be the one to push him out.

Dan Lipinski (D-His Dad) gets the Dem nomination for re-election to Congress: 70 percent. Marie Newman will run a spirited campaign, but Lipinski, sadly, always survives in this district.

Mike Quigley (D-Hockey) gets the Dem nomination for re-election to Congress: 90 percent. Sameena Mustafa is an intriguing challenger, one of three, but Quigley is one of the Machine's favorite "reformers."

Danny Davis (D-Moonies) gets the Dem nomination for re-election to Congress: 99 percent. Two no-name challengers, sadly. Like Rush, his time is long past.

Adam Kinzinger (R-Downstate) gets the GOP nomination for re-election to Congress: 99 percent. Two challengers whom are presumably not real threats.

Darin LaHood (R-His Dad) gets the GOP nomination for re-election to Congress: 99 percent. One challenger who is presumably not a threat.

Toni Preckwinkle gets the Dem nomination for Cook County Board President: 95 percent. Some folks may have lingering distaste for the now-revoked soda tax, but Preckwinkle is still miles beyond her competition.

Bob Fioretti gets the Dem nomination: 5 percent. Only if the nexus of racists and soda tax haters is larger than we think - though he found a pigeon in Willie Wilson to bankroll him.

Todd Stroger gets the Dem nomination: 0 percent. As if - but that didn't stop some members of our esteemed local press corps from taking him seriously. OUT

Tom Dart gets the Dem nomination for re-election to Cook County Sheriff: 90 percent. Two challengers, including former state Rep. Eddie Acevedo, who have never appeared on 60 Minutes.

Karen Yarbrough gets the Dem nomination for re-election to Cook County Recorder of Deeds: 70 percent. She shouldn't, but the Machine favors her over main challenger Nick Shields, spokesperson for Cook County Clerk David Orr.

Alma Anaya gets the Dem nomination to replace Chuy Garcia on the Cook County board: 60 percent. The fix is in.

Alex Acevedo gets the Dem nomination: 20 percent. Some folks may not like the fix that's in.

Angeles Sandoval gets the Dem nomination: 20 percent. Some folks may not like the fix that's in.

Ricardo Munoz gets the Dem nomination: 0 percent. He had a good shot at the job he's longed for, but in the end helped fix it for Anaya. OUT

Joe Berrios gets the Dem nomination for Cook County Assessor: 50 percent. He shouldn't, of course, but he is the Machine.

Fritz Kaegi gets the Dem nomination: 30 percent. Got started early, though hasn't picked up much traction. Still.

Andrea Raila gets the Dem nomination: 20 percent. Her second shot at Berrios; could become the better alternative.

Robert Shaw gets the Dem nomination for Metropolitan Water Reclamation District: 10 percent. Please let's not let this happen.

Todd Stroger gets the Dem nomination for Metropolitan Water Reclamation District: 0 percent. Please let's not let this happen.

Kwame Raoul gets the Dem nomination for state attorney general: 45 percent. Early frontrunner with the best resume.

Jesse Ruiz gets the Dem nomination: 30 percent. Lackluster civil servant whose term on the Chicago school board will not look good.

Sharon Fairley gets the Dem nomination: 20 percent. Big jump from short-lived term leading COPA.

Renato Mariotti gets the Dem nomination: 5 percent. Best known for his Twitter feed.

Pat Quinn gets the Dem nomination: 0 percent. Know when your time is up, dude.

Nancy Rotering gets the Dem nomination: 0 percent. Big step up from Highland Park mayor.

Aaron Goldstein gets the Dem nomination: 0 percent. Former Blagojevich defense lawyer is not a great credential.

Rahm wins re-election: 70 percent. You can't beat evil with nobody.

Troy LaRaviere gets elected mayor: 10 percent. Being a spurned principal, no matter how good you were at your job, isn't enough.

Bridget Gainer gets elected mayor: 10 percent. Apparently considering it, and field needs a woman, but willing to challenge Rahm?

Scott Waguespack gets elected mayor: 10 percent. Best council antagonist, but hasn't built citywide appeal.

Garry McCarthy gets elected mayor: 0 percent. 16 shots.

Chance The Rapper gets elected mayor: 0 percent. No.

Propositions

Over/Under on number of aldermen who will be indicted before the next election: 4. Hurry up, feds, transcribe those tapes!

Over/Under on number of aldermen currently wearing a wire: 1.5. There's always at least one.

Next alderman likely to be indicted, three-way parlay, choose from the following, in descending probability: Willie Cochran [done!], Jason Ervin, Howard Brookins, Anthony Beale, Emma Mitts, Walter Burnett, George Cardenas, Carrie Austin, Danny Solis, Patrick O'Connor.

Daley brother most likely to be indicted in descending probability, parlays available: John, Michael, Richard, Bill.

Daley relative most likely to be indicted in descending probability: Patrick Daley, Patrick Daley Thompson.

Emanuel brother most likely to be indicted in descending probability: Ari, Rahm, Ezekiel.

Next city/county officeholder likely to be indicted in descending probability: Dorothy Brown, Karen Yarbrough, Joe Berrios, Stanley Moore, Maria Pappas.

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 12:30 AM | Permalink

All Is Not Forgiven, John Fox & Co.

"The last time the Bears were victorious was the same week the Cubs last won a game, and if that feels like a long time ago, it's because it was," Barry Rozner writes for the Daily Herald.

*

"Forget the Bears' lost season for just a moment and keep in mind that all that matters is that whether rookie Mitchell Trubisky is good at quarterback," Dan Bernstein of The Score writes.

"If he is, everything is fine for general manager Ryan Pace and whomever the new coach may be after this slog is over."

NO. This narrative is aggravating. For Trubisky to have been worth the draft picks Pace gave up to get him, he has to be way better than, say, Deshaun Watson and the rest of the 2017 quarterback cohort.

*

"[Kendall] Wright revealed the [receiving] corps calls itself 7-Eleven because 'we're always open,'" David Haugh writes for the Tribune.

But they're not! More like a store that's only open one day a year! C'mon!

*

To Bears - and Bengals - Twitter.

Is this good or bad? What is the league average? Stats are frequently meaningless unless they are compared to something.

*

I'm no Bears defender, but maybe this is "progress," "development" or "Bengals."

*

But I thought they had to establish the run? #CompetingConvenientNarratives

*

Not really.

*

*

*

*

*

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 12:05 AM | Permalink

December 9, 2017

The Week In Chicago Rock

You shoulda been there.

1. Tom Kiefer at the Forge in Joliet on Thursday night.


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2. Cornell Thigpen at the Promontory on Sunday night.

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3. Jay-Z at the Blackhawks arena on Tuesday night.

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4. Blue Dream at Schubas on Thursday night.

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5. Thrice at the Aragon on Thursday night.

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6. Circa Survive at the Aragon on Thursday night.

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7. MR 666 at Danny's on Tuesday night.

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Catching up with . . .

Ethers at the Hideout on December 1st.

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The Love Birds at the Hideout on December 1st.

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Negative Scanner at the Hideout on December 1st.

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Self Hate at the Cobra Lounge on December 1st.

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Ledge at the Cobra Lounge on December 1st.

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The Wild & Hungry at Livewire on December 2nd.

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Jodee Lewis at Wishbone on December 2nd.

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Jana Rush at the Hideout on December 2nd.

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 4:35 PM | Permalink

December 8, 2017

The Beachwood Radio Sports Hour #178: Bears At Peak McCaskey

John Fox still coach, Ryan Pace still MIA, undeserving mediocre family still in charge. Plus: Cubs Stove League; The Loyola Ramblers Exist!; Coming Soon: The Niko Mirotic Story; Blackhawks Flat As A Pancake; Mystery Soccer Stadium; and Music City, Schmusic City Bowl.


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SHOW NOTES

* 178.

1:00: Cubs Stove League.

* Theotani.

* Levine: Decision To Come Monday.

* Haugh: Caution Makes Sense When Predicting Stardom For Cubs Target Shohei Ohtani.

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BREAKING: BOY WAS I WRONG!

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* Kyle Schwarber Looks Much Slimmer This Offseason.

* Cubs Agree To 3-Year Deal With Tyler Chatwood Worth $38M.

* Jesse Rogers: Why The Cubs Shouldn't Make A Blockbuster Trade For A Starting Pitcher.

* Rondon out, Grimm in.

* Alex Avila!

29:19: John Fox Is Still The Bears' Coach!!!

* The McCaskey Way!

* Dickerson: Does Ryan Pace's Draft History Bode Well For Bears' Future?

* Ryan Pace, MIA.

45:08: The Loyola Ramblers Exist!

* Porter Moser.

* Northwestern a bust, DePaul horrible.

49:37: Coming Soon: The Niko Mirotic Story.

* Rated "R" for Riiiiiiiiiiiight.

51:49: Blackhawks Flat As A Pancake.

* Bernstein: Life Without Corey No Fun.

56:00: Mystery Soccer Stadium.

57:58: Music City, Schmusic City Bowl.

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STOPPAGE: 1:44

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For archives and other shows, see The Beachwood Radio Network.

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 1:17 PM | Permalink

More College Financial Aid Going To The Rich

Maya Portillo started life solidly in the middle class. Both her parents were college graduates, they sent her to a Montessori school, they took family vacations and they owned a house in Tucson filled with the books she loved to read.

Then, when she was 10, Portillo's father left, the house was foreclosed on and the recession hit. Her mother was laid off, fell into debt and took Portillo and her two sisters to live a hand-to-mouth existence with their grandparents in Indiana.

"It could have happened to anyone," said Portillo, who took two jobs after school to pitch in while trying to maintain her grades. "I can't even begin to describe how hard it was."

She choked up. "It's really hard to talk about, but when you have to help put food on the table when you're in high school, it does something to you."

Portillo recounted this story in a quiet conference room on the pristine hilltop campus of Cornell University, from which she was about to graduate with a major in industrial labor relations and minors in education and equality studies.

Her long path from comfort to poverty to an against-the-odds Ivy League degree gave her firsthand exposure to how even the smartest low-income students often succeed despite, rather than because of, programs widely assumed to help them go to college.

This is happening as tens of billions of dollars of taxpayer-funded and privately provided financial aid, along with money universities and colleges dole out directly, flows to their higher-income classmates.

"There is a very seriously warped view among many Americans, and particularly more affluent Americans, about where the money is actually going," said Richard Reeves, a senior fellow in economic studies at the Brookings Institution and author of Dream Hoarders: How the American Upper Middle Class Is Leaving Everyone Else in the Dust.

"They say, look, there's always other support going to poorer kids," Reeves said. "Well, there isn't. There actually isn't. But the ignorance about where the money is actually going and who benefits from it, that ignorance is really an obstacle to reform around what is in fact a reverse distribution."

It's a little-known reality that reflects - and, since higher education is a principal route to the middle class, widens - the American income divide. And, at the same time that the fight over issues including health care and changes in tax law has reignited the national debate over income inequality, financial aid disparities are getting worse, driven by politics, the pursuit of prestige and policies that have been shifting resources away from students with financial need.

The result? "We're not helping the right people go to college as much as we should," said Ron Ehrenberg, a Cornell economist and director of the university's Higher Education Research Institute.

mayaportillo.jpgMaya Portillo at the New York City lab where she studies how children from different socioeconomic backgrounds develop language skills. In a system that benefits her wealthier classmates to a surprising degree, Portillo was one of a small number of low-income students who managed to enroll at and graduate from Cornell University. Jackie Mader/The Hechinger Report

* * * * *

At least 86,000 more low-income students per year are qualified to attend the most selective universities and colleges than enroll, according to a study by the Georgetown University Center for Education and the Workforce. On standardized admissions tests, these students score as well as or better than those who do get that privilege.

It's not because selective institutions can't afford to help low-income students, the Georgetown study said. The 69 most prestigious universities boast endowments averaging $1.2 billion and posted typical annual budget surpluses of $139 million from 2012 to 2015, the most recent year for which the figures are available.

Cornell has a $6.8 billion endowment and took in $390 million a year more than it spent during that time, the study said. Yet federal data show that only 15 percent of its students are low-income, based on whether they qualify for a federal Pell grant. Nationally, 33 percent of all students are low-income by this measure, the College Board reports.

Children of parents in the top 1 percent of earnings are 77 times more likely to go to an Ivy League college than those whose parents are in the bottom 20 percent, a National Bureau of Education Research study found. "Polishing the privileged," one policymaker calls this.

But it's not just Ivy League or even private institutions where the percentages of less well-off students are low. Some taxpayer-supported public universities enroll very small proportions of them. Only 12 percent of students at the University of Virginia, for example, come from families with incomes low enough to qualify for Pell grants, federal data show.

It's not because there aren't plenty of low-income students who qualify, research by the Institute for Higher Education Policy found. Only 15 percent of the students at Pennsylvania State University's main campus, for example, are low-income, but the study showed that twice that proportion would meet admissions requirements, meaning Penn State could graduate 900 more lower-income students per year.

If such a change was made by all the universities and colleges that now take fewer lower-income students than they could, the report concluded, 57,500 more low-income students per year would be earning degrees.

"When you look at the way that higher education is financed, subsidized and organized in the United States, your heart sinks just a bit further," Reeves said. "It takes the inequalities given to it and makes them worse."

Even low-income students with the highest scores on 10th-grade standardized tests are more than three times less likely to go to top colleges than higher-income students, according to the Education Trust. More than a fifth of those high-achieving low-income students never go to college at all, while nearly all of their wealthier counterparts do.

In some cases that's because low-income prospects are discouraged by the cost. It's a legitimate worry. Even though - as institutions argue - low-income students may in fact be eligible for financial aid they're not aware of, that money seldom covers the full price of their educations or enough of it that they could afford the rest. Portillo, for example, got comparatively generous help, but still had to pay $3,500 a year she didn't have, plus other expenses, such as mandatory health insurance.

"For someone like me, $3,500 is everything," she said. "It's a lot of money." So she borrowed $21,000 over the course of her education, which she'll have to repay out of her salary working at a New York City charter school for low-income students. "Oof," she said, thinking about the day her loans come due. "I'm not coming out of here debt-free, as they kind of market themselves."

Students who don't need the money, meanwhile, keep getting more of it. At private universities, students from families with annual earnings of $155,000-plus receive an average of $5,800 more per year in financial aid than a federal formula says they need to pay tuition; at public universities, they get $1,810 more than they need, according to the College Board.

* * * * *

Here's where the money goes that you think helps poor students pay for college.

  • Private colleges give students from families with annual incomes of $155,000+ an average of $5,800 more per year in financial aid than a federal formula says they need to pay tuition; at public universities, they get $1,810 more than they need.
  • 529 college savings accounts allow for $2 billion worth of federal and at least $265 million worth of state tax breaks that almost all go to upper-income families.
  • Federal tuition tax credits cost the treasury $35 billion. More than a fifth of the money under the principal deduction goes to families earning $100,000 to $180,000 a year.
  • A student at a private university from a family in the top quarter of income is more likely to get work-study money than a student at a community college from the bottom quarter.
  • State "free-college" programs often benefit wealthier students more than lower-income ones. In Oregon, which made community college free, students from families in the top 40 percent of income got 60 percent of the benefit.

SOURCES: The College Board; U.S. Department of the Treasury Office of Tax Analysis (federal) and the Brookings Institution (state); Pew Charitable Trusts and Congressional Research Service; Center for Analysis of Postsecondary Education and Employment; The College Board; Oregon Higher Education Coordinating Commission

* * * * *

College is expensive even for the wealthiest of families, of course, and even more so if they have children close to each other in age or live in places with high costs of living, Ehrenberg said. But those are families whose kids would "absolutely" go to college without such help, he said.

This system has evolved because, with enrollment in decline, colleges and universities are vying for a shrinking supply of students - especially for students whose parents can pay at least some of the tuition - who they lure by offering discounts and financial aid.

Cornell sophomore Aleks Stajkovic benefitted from that strategy. He got financial aid he said he didn't really need. "I know I'm on a bunch of scholarships and stuff," he said, studying in the atrium of a grand, century-old building on the university's stately arts quadrangle. "It's just like a supplement." He would have been able to afford Cornell without it, Stajkovic said. "For sure. I definitely would have. And that's the sad thing - there's kids that need that."

All of this means that, in spite of promises from policymakers, politicians and colleges themselves to help the least-wealthy students, the net price of a higher education after discounts and financial aid is rising much faster for them than for the wealthiest ones. While higher-income students still pay more overall, federal data shows, since 2012 the net price for the poorest students at Cornell has increased four and a half times faster than for the richest.

Cornell wouldn't talk about these issues. A spokeswoman said no one at the university was available to discuss them at any time over a three-week period.

A mile away at smaller Ithaca College, however - which has one-twentieth as big of an endowment as Cornell but enrolls a larger proportion of low-income undergraduates - student financial services director Lisa Hoskey said all higher education institutions have to deal with the complicated calculus of attracting enough families that can pay to keep their campuses going.

"That balance is always tricky," said Hoskey, the daughter of a factory worker who depended on financial aid herself to go to college. "I know people don't often think that there's a bottom line, but there is. And so do we help more people with less money or do we help less people with more money?"

She said: "If I had my way, if we could meet need, I would absolutely love to do that. We can't."

Wealthier families have now come to expect financial aid, and they negotiate for more - something lower-income ones without college-going experience may not know that they can do - said Hoskey, on whose office wall hang thank-you notes from students she's helped.

"Most people will tell you that financial aid is a privilege for those who earn it - until it becomes their own child, and then it's a right," she said. Parents who understand the mystifying process "try to maximize the benefits that they can receive. And I think some people are more knowledgeable about how to do that."

Portillo gets that. "It's like a business, right?" she said. "I understand where the university is coming from. At the same time, it's difficult, as somebody who is low-income," to pay for college without more help.

Colleges' shifting of some of their financial aid to higher-income students who could kick in toward salaries, facilities and other things means taxpayer-supported government policies are largely left to support low-income ones. But those policies, too, disproportionately help the wealthy, often through hard-to-see tax subsidies.

"These programs do not get at basic public policy issues, which is that if you're a bright kid coming from a relatively low-income family, your chances of enrolling in and eventually completing college are much, much lower than a less-talented student coming from a wealthy family," said Ehrenberg.

It starts with savings. People who set up college-savings accounts, called 529 plans, get $2 billion a year worth of federal tax deductions - projected by the Treasury Department to double by 2026 to $4 billion a year. Yet the department says that almost all of these benefits go to upper-income families that would send their kids to college even without them. Only one in five families earning under $35,000 a year even know about 529 plans, a survey by the investment firm Edward Jones found. States forgo at least an additional $265 million in their own tax breaks for holders of 529 plans, according to the Brookings Institution.

Once they pay for college, Americans are eligible for federal tuition tax breaks. But those breaks also disproportionately benefit higher-income students and have grown to exceed the amount spent annually on Pell grants for lower-income ones. The tax deductions cost the federal government $35 billion a year in forgone revenue, according to the Pew Charitable Trusts. That's 13 times more than in 1990, even when adjusted for inflation.

More than a fifth of the money provided under the principal deduction, the American Opportunity Tax Credit, goes to families earning between $100,000 and $180,000 per year, the Congressional Research Service found. It also found that 93 percent of recipients would have gone to college without it.

Other funding for students is also unequally applied. Portillo earned some cash toward her expenses by getting a work-study job on campus, part of a nearly $1 billion federal financial aid program that pays students for such jobs as shelving library books and busing tables. But because of a more than 50-year-old formula under which work-study money is distributed, it skews to more prestigious private universities with higher-income students.

These schools enroll only 14 percent of undergraduates, but get 38 percent of work-study money, while community colleges - which take almost half of all students, many of them low-income - get just 20 percent, according to the Center for Analysis of Postsecondary Education and Employment.

A student at a private university from a family in the top quarter of income is more likely to get work-study money than a student at a community college from the bottom quarter.

"Lots of higher education policies are built in a way that would win support from middle- and even upper-income taxpayers and they were not really thought about as, 'Will this really increase the number of people going to college?'" Ehrenberg said. "If I were a social planner we would be using our resources to help support the people who would not be able to go to college."

The Trump administration has proposed cutting spending on work-study nearly in half.

Employer tuition assistance and private scholarships from Rotary clubs and chambers of commerce, too, benefit wealthier people more than poorer ones, who often don't know about the aid or whose schools don't have enough college counselors to help them get it. There is more than $17 billion available annually from such sources, the College Board reports; more than 10 percent goes to families earning $106,000 and up, and about 60 percent to those with incomes above $65,000, the U.S. Department of Education calculates.

States also provide more than $10 billion in financial aid to students, according to the College Board. But as they try to keep top students from moving away, the proportion of that money being given out based on measures other than need has risen from zero, in the early 1980s, to nearly a quarter of state financial aid today.

Experts say that even "free college" in states including New York, where it will eventually be extended, for state schools, to children of families with earnings of up to $125,000, is likely to benefit wealthier students more than lower-income ones. That's because it only kicks in after students have already exhausted all of their other financial aid. Students from higher-earning families who don't qualify for such things as federal Pell Grants will end up getting bigger breaks than lower-income students who do.

In Oregon, which has made community college free, students from families in the top 40 percent of income got 60 percent of the free-tuition money, the state's Higher Education Coordinating Commission found. (Oregon officials have since changed the requirements, disqualifying the wealthiest families from the program.)

Unsurprisingly, given these trends, the proportion of low-income people getting degrees is declining while the proportion of higher-income ones continues to go up. Students from higher-income families today are nearly nine times more likely to earn bachelor's degrees by the time they're 24 than students from lower-income ones, up from about seven times more likely in 1970, according to the Pell Institute for the Study of Opportunity in Higher Education.

Those low-income students who do make it into college are much more likely to enroll at for-profit universities, where graduation rates are the worst in higher education, or thinly stretched regional public ones. At community colleges, which spend less per student than many public primary and secondary schools, and where the odds of graduating are also comparatively low, about four in 10 of the students are low income, according to the American Association of Community Colleges.

The policies perpetuating this aren't likely to change in the current political climate, experts said.

"The system is in danger of becoming trapped in a kind of horrible anti-egalitarian equilibrium," said Reeves. "I see that getting worse instead of better. The only hope, I think, is if the institutions themselves and the leaders of those institutions - who I think at some level are committed to the ideals of more opportunity - can find a way to alter the equilibrium themselves."

As hard as it was for her to afford, Portillo hugely values her Cornell degree. "I feel so lucky because I know 10 other kids just like me who struggled the same with low socioeconomic status and couldn't get that spot because there aren't enough spots for people like us," she said quietly. "That's not based on how hard they work. It's based on how much money they have. And that is heartbreaking."

This story was produced by The Hechinger Report, a nonprofit, independent news organization focused on inequality and innovation in education, in collaboration with the Center for Investigative Reporting.

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Previously:
* Colleges Let Taxpayers Help Poor Students While They Go After Rich.

* Colleges That Pledged To Help Poor Families Have Been Doing The Opposite, New Figures Show.

* Top Universities Could Take Thousands More Low-Income Students, Study Says.

* Another Advantage Of Being Rich In America: Grade Inflation.

* Wealthy Students Pushing Out Low-Income Students At Top Public Universities.

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 6:04 AM | Permalink

December 7, 2017

Low-Wage Immigrant Women Call Out Workplace Sexual Harassment

While celebrities, elected officials, and heads of corporations remain in the headlines, low-wage workers - especially women of color and immigrants - remain on the frontlines of sexual harassment and abuse at work. At the same time, low-wage working women are on the frontlines of organizing for change and fighting back against sexual harassment.

The country in an important cultural moment, with brave women speaking out against men in powerful positions. At the same time, low-wage workers who face high levels of harassment and abuse often remain in the shadows. Arise Chicago and other local and national worker organizations are proud to support low-wage immigrant women and women of color as they speak out against sexual harassment and challenge common power dynamics in the workplace.

To bring to light the stories of women from across low-wage industries, worker members from Arise Chicago created a video on their own experiences of sexual harassment. Arise members shared stories and advice in hopes of reaching other women - to help break societal stigma and fear, and to educate workers on what to do in cases of harassment on the job.

Arise worker leader Martina Sanchez sees the growing outcry from workers as a turning point in the fight against sexual harassment. "There are thousands of women who remain silent out of a variety of fears," says Sanchez. "Fear of what will be said about them, fear of losing their job, or worst of all, fear they won't be listened to and nothing will change. But this moment is the beginning of a new struggle."

Arise Chicago board member and domestic worker leader Isabel Escobar agrees: "This is a very sad time for our country, but also a very important time. A door has opened for more women like me to speak out."

Escobar also emphasized the importance of low-wage workers to speak up, "We want to let people know that this doesn't just happen to famous women," says Escobar. "Abuse is not only committed by famous men in high power positions. Sexual harassment happens every day to low-wage workers, to immigrants, to women of color. And bosses, supervisors, feel they have power over our work, our income. Therefore, many women are afraid to speak up or afraid no one will believe us."

Escobar herself faced multiple instances of sexual harassment as a home cleaner. Yet, she remains determined to make change for herself and other workers. "I encourage other women to speak up," she says. "Nothing will change if we stay quiet. Now is the time to talk. Now is the time to be strong and unite to end sexual harassment at work."

Arise board member, and worker leader Rocio Caravantes who also experienced harassment at work, echoes the sentiment that now is the time for women to act. "If we speak up now, we will be creating a better path forward for the next generation of women workers," says Caravantes.

The video:

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Comments welcome.


Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 1:31 PM | Permalink

The [Thursday] Papers

Note: The Papers will not appear on Friday. It looks like Monday is a bust, too.

Meanwhile . . .

ChicagoGram

#loganproject #artisticbombingcrew #writersbench #writersbenchchicago #flash_abc #bboybabc #seenabc #logansquare

A post shared by FLASH ABC MARS (@flash_abc) on

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ChicagoTube

Chicago Bus Stop (Ooh I Love It) / The Salsoul Orchestra

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BeachBook

Researchers Link Acceptance Of Climate Change To Group Identity.

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On This Day . . . Deconstructing Rahm's Mea Culpa.

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ABC Reprimands - But Does Not Fire - Producer For Giving Proprietary Data To Trump Campaign While Polls Still Open.

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Beachwood Holiday Gift Guide Recommendation!

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Oldest Monster Black Hole Ever Found Is 800 Million Times More Massive Than The Sun.

Holy fuck. Our universe is beyond comprehension.

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Yahoo! Sues Mozilla For Discovering It's Search Sucks.

*

Super Cool Tree Program At University Of Minnesota.

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TweetWood
A sampling.

He is rubber, you are glue.

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It's the least someone could do.

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Oh, Sneed. The fact that you are still employed - and handsomely compensated - is a pox on journalism and should fill the Sun-Times with shame.

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The Beachwood Tronc Line: Peak humanity.


Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 10:35 AM | Permalink

'Taking A Knee' In Trump Country

"A protest of racial injustice highlights divisions in Robeson County, North Carolina, the most diverse rural county in America, where voters also helped Donald Trump win the county and the White House."


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Previously in Colin Kaepernick:

* Don't Be Surprised If Colin Kaepernick Prompts More Schoolchildren To Sit For The Pledge Of Allegiance.

* Why Colin Kaepernick Matters.

* Your Turn: Colin Kaepernick's Protest.

* Youth Football Team (8-Year-Olds) Take Knees In Belleville.

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 5:41 AM | Permalink

December 6, 2017

The [Wednesday] Papers

"The attorneys for the families of two men suing an ex-Chicago cop and the City of Chicago are asking for severe legal sanctions after city attorneys produced a critical disciplinary report against the former cop well into the trial and years after it was requested," the Sun-Times reports.

Here we go again. Just nine days ago:

"A federal judge has ordered the city of Chicago to pay $62,500 for withholding records in a wrongful death lawsuit, marking the eighth time Mayor Rahm Emanuel's administration has been sanctioned for failing to turn over potential evidence in a police misconduct case," the Tribune reports.

"The city agreed to the amount this month after U.S. District Judge Joan Gottschall upheld an earlier ruling that the city acted in 'bad faith' when it ignored a court order and made little effort to provide documents to the lawyer for the family of Divonte Young, 20, who was shot and killed by an officer five years ago."

Back to the current-day Sun-Times:

"Attorneys for the men's families insist the report 'establishes the Code of Silence is alive and well in the Chicago Police Department and has been since the infancy of [the defendant's] employment as a police officer in 1992.' A spokesman for the city's law department did not immediately comment, but city attorneys have apparently said the report fell through the cracks during a transition to a new computer system.

"'This is like, the damning report, and it comes up out of nowhere,' U.S. District Judge Virginia Kendall said Tuesday. 'It's really a mess.'"

Again.

"The city's extremely late turnover of the disciplinary records raises serious questions about how the trial can proceed. It also provides another example of city attorneys failing to provide records to opposing attorneys in police misconduct cases - something that's the city has been criticized or sanctioned for by judges."

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"Kendall said she'll instruct the jury that they can 'make the inference that the city intentionally withheld' all three documents do to a code of silence," the Tribune reports.

Certainly, then, we can make that inference too.

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The rest of the case doesn't look good for the city or Chicago Police Department either.

"In reading through the file, Kendall said she was struck by the fact that Frugoli's story about the incident changed over time, including sworn statements before the Police Board that she said were clearly 'embellished.'

"She noted that 'cookie-cutter' police reports documenting the incident appeared to be cleaned up to shield Frugoli and other officers from further allegations of wrongdoing. Among the alterations, she said, were edit marks inserting language that Frugoli was 'escorted' to the police station after his arrest, rather than the initial statements that he'd driven himself."

I highly recommend you go read the rest if you haven't been following this story.

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New on today's Beachwood . . .

The End Of Elusion For PokerStars
How the online gaming company used the offshore world to cater to U.S. players.

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Russian Dopes
The ban on Russia from competing at the 2018 Winter Olympics in South Korea is not unprecedented, but it is unique: it is directly linked to the country's lack of sporting integrity.

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ChicagoGram

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ChicagoTube

The Future Of Mexican Food In Chicago.

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BeachBook

Taking A Second Look At The Learn-To-Code Craze.

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Media Organizations Support Jamie Kalven's Fight To Protect His Sources In The Laquan McDonald Case.

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TweetWood
A sampling.

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For his upcoming campaign, in which he's unopposed.

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The Beachwood Tronc Line: O'Rahma.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 6:52 AM | Permalink

Banning Russia

As the result of a state-sponsored doping regime in the lead-up to and during the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics, the International Olympic Committee has banned Russia from participating at next year's games.

Bans from the Olympics are not unprecedented. In the aftermath of the two world wars, certain countries - like Germany and Japan - were not permitted to compete.

Also, the IOC banned South Africa for three decades from the 1960s because of its apartheid regime. Afghanistan was suspended from the Olympics in 1999, partly because of the Taliban's prohibition on the participation of women athletes. It did not send athletes to the 2000 Olympics.

The ban on Russia from competing at next year's Winter Olympics in South Korea is, however, unique: it is directly linked to the country's lack of sporting integrity.

How Might Russia React?

The ban is a humiliating blow to Russian sport generally but also to the country's president, Vladimir Putin. His interest in winter sports was evidenced by Russia spending a record $51 billion on hosting the Olympics in 2014, which surpassed the previous record Beijing set in 2008.

But just one Olympic cycle later, the integrity of that event - at which Russia topped the medal table - has been undermined, and the Russian flag will not fly at the 2018 Games. Russian state TV has already said it will not broadcast from South Korea, where the country's athletes were expected to be medal contenders in one-third of its 102 events.

Aside from Putin's reaction, there are several further points of interest arising from the ban. First, it is likely that Russia will appeal to the Court of Arbitration for Sport. Russia appealed its ban from the 2016 Rio Paralympics - it remains banned from the Winter Paralympics - to CAS. This time, expect the appeal to be founded on the due process argument that the reports upon which the IOC's decision is based - the McLaren reports of 2016 and the IOC's Schmid Commission - were investigatory only. While the evidence, at first instance, appears compelling, Russia has yet to test or answer it in an adversarial setting.

Second, the IOC's ban is not a blanket prohibition' the IOC has said that it will allow athletes from Russia to compete under a neutral flag and as "Olympic Athletes from Russia."

Similar to what occurred in the lead-up to the Rio Olympics in 2016 - where a ban on Russia competing was contemplated - the IOC has laid down strict testing criteria which such neutral athletes must satisfy before being declared eligible. Expect multiple CAS appeals to emanate from the IOC's interpretation of criteria.

Echoes And Lessons Of History

CAS appeals may be rendered moot if Russia, as has been hinted, decides that such is the disproportionate, biased nature of the IOC's actions that it will fully boycott the event and prohibit its athletes from competing even as "Olympic Athletes from Russia."

Boycotts have historical connotations. The last time Russia hosted an Olympics, in Moscow in 1980, the U.S. boycotted to protest the Soviet Union's invasion of Afghanistan. Subsequently, the Soviet Union boycotted the 1984 Olympic Games in Los Angeles.

The use of sporting success as a propaganda tool was one of the consequences of the Cold War. The Soviets and many of its satellite states - notably East Germany - used sophisticated state-sponsored doping regimes to fuel their success during this era.

Echoes of that regime, particularly the East German system, resonate today. Its system was not so much state-sponsored but state-mandated.

Evidence from the surviving athletes themselves and from the Stasi files of the era reveal that young East German athletes rarely had a choice when it came to ingesting almost industrial levels of steroids, which had a devastating impact on their long-term health.

Team Versus Individual Doping

The issue of informed, collective consent and fault in sports doping has been discussed at CAS - notably in the Essendon drugs case in Australian rules football. And the nature of doping infractions in a team setting is often much more nuanced than might first appear.

Athletes generally have a real-time appreciation of their bodies: their focus is on the next game or event; they often, rightly or wrongly, assign their long-term health to others in their entourage or support staff.

While doping ultimately reveals itself in the testing of athletes' samples, as a matter of causation or responsibility, fault may lie elsewhere.

In Russia's case, it is of note that the IOC has also banned its current deputy prime minister and former sports minister, Vitaly Mutko, from all future Olympic Games. But while Mutko will not be able to attend the 2018 Winter Olympics, he will continue to be the chief organizer for the 2018 World Cup, which Russia will host.

FIFA, soccer's world governing body, does not believe this is an impediment to Russia hosting the World Cup. But expect its attitude to come under intense scrutiny in coming months, as well as the wider issue of the prevalence of doping in that sport.

Finally, banning Russia from the 2018 Winter Olympics was a straightforward decision for the IOC. The trickier issue will come with regard to the 2020 Summer Olympics. Will Russia have reformed its anti-doping policy and procedure to the standards expected by entities such as the World Anti-Doping Agency?

The criteria used by WADA and others to judge Russia will be highly technical in nature. Perhaps the most important way to gauge Russia's good faith on this matter would be to see how it treated three key whistleblowers who have been central to this whole affair: Vitaly Stepanov and his wife Yuliya, and Grigory Rodchenkov.

Thus far, Russia has traduced them. They no longer live in Russia, but in fear. If Russia continues to discredit them, it should remain discredited in the eyes of the sporting world.

Jack Anderson is a sports law professor at Melbourne Law School at the University of Melbourne. This article was originally published on The Conversation.

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See also:

"The attorney for the lab director who helped in the doping of Russia Olympic athletes, and then became a whistleblower, said his client is 'anxiety-ridden because he's afraid of what the Russian government' is going to do to his family," AP reports.

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Previously in doping:

* How Russia Hid Its Doping In Plain Sight.

* IOC: Sochi Doping Allegations Could Show 'Unprecedented Criminality.'

* On Eve Of Olympics, Top Investigator Details Secret Efforts To Undermine Russian Doping Probe.

* Doping Probe: 'Unprecedented' Russian Corruption.

* Secret To Success: A Derby Win And Racing's Doping Addiction.

* Why It's So Hard To Catch Track-And-Field Cheaters.

* Everyone's Juicing.

* Russia Walks Back Doping Admission.

* Amateur Doping.

* Opioids In The Iditarod.

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Comments welcome.

The Conversation

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 2:49 AM | Permalink

December 5, 2017

The Paradise Papers: The End Of Elusion For PokerStars

Dear Steve,

Our Paradise Papers coverage continues today. Our reporter Simon Bowers reveals how an online gaming company used the offshore world to cater to U.S. players.

pokerstars.jpg

We also have updates from the European Parliament last week and the calls for more tax havens to be added to the EU's "Blacklist."

We're also really excited to launch our project Alma Mater! We are looking for investigative and education reporters to help us uncover what a range of universities - from the U.S., U.K., and Canada - are doing in the offshore world. Does that sound like you or someone you know?

Until next week!
Amy Wilson-Chapman
ICIJ's Community Engagement Editor

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Previously in the Paradise Papers:
* 'Paradise Papers' Reveal Tax Avoidance, Shady Dealings Of World's Rich And Powerful.

* Just How Much Money Is Held Offshore? Hint: A SHIT-TON.

* Development Dreams Lost In The Offshore World.

* Keeping Offshore 'Hush Hush,' But Why?

* Tax Havens Are Alive With The Sound Of Music.

* Today In Tax Avoidance Of The Ultra-Wealthy.

* Go To Town With This Offshore Leaks Database.

* The Paradise Papers: The View From Africa And Asia.

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Previously in the Panama Papers:
* The Panama Papers: Remarkable Global Media Collaboration Cracks Walls Of Offshore Tax Haven Secrecy.

* The Panama Papers: Prosecutors Open Probes.

* The [Monday] Papers.

* Adventures In Tax Avoidance.

* Mossack Fonseca's Oligarchs, Dictators And Corrupt White-Collar Businessmen.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! They're All In It Together.

* Meet The Panama Papers Editor Who Handled 376 Reporters In 80 Countries.

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Previously in tax scammage:
* Deepwater Horizon Settlement Comes With $5.35 Billion Tax Windfall.

* Offshoring By 29 Companies Costs Illinois $1.2 Billion Annually.

* Government Agencies Allow Corporations To Write Off Billions In Federal Settlements.

* The Gang Of 62 Vs. The World.

* How The Maker Of TurboTax Fought Free, Simple Tax Filing.

* $1.4 Trillion: Oxfam Exposes The Great Offshore Tax Scam Of U.S. Companies.

* How Barclay's Turned A $10 Billion Profit Into A Tax Loss.

* Wall Street Stock Loans Drain $1 Billion A Year From German Taxpayers.

* German Finance Minister Cries Foul Over Tax Avoidance Deals.

* Prosecutor Targets Commerzbank For Deals That Dodge German Taxes.

* A Schlupfloch Here, A Schlupfloch There. Now It's Real Money.

* How Milwaukee Landlords Avoid Taxes.

* Study: 32 Illinois Fortune 500 Companies Holding At Least $147 Billion Offshore.

* Watch Out For The Coming Tax Break Trickery.

* When A 'Tax Bonanza' Is Actually A Huge Corporate Tax Break.

* The Hypocrisy Of Corporate Welfare: It's Bigger Than Trump.

* Oxfam Names World's Worst Tax Havens Fueling 'Global Race To Bottom.'

* Offshore Tax Havens Cost Average Illinois Small Business $5,789 A Year.

* State Tax Incentives To Corporations Don't Work.

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Previously in carried interest, aka The Billionaire's Loophole:
* Patriotic Millionaires Vs. Carried Interest.

* The Somewhat Surreal Politics Of A Private Equity Tax Loophole Costing Us Billions (That Obama Refused To Close Despite Pledging To Do So).

* Fact-Checking Trump & Clinton On The Billionaire's Tax Break.

* Despite Trump Campaign Promise, Billionaires' Tax Loophole Survives Again.

* Carried Interest Reform Is a Sham.

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 2:55 PM | Permalink

The [Tuesday] Papers

A bunch of stuff in the pipeline but the day's getting late, so I'm just gonna leave y'all with this stuff . . .

ChicagoGram

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ChicagoTube

Bloodshot Records' 13 Days of Xmas Infomercial.

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BeachBook

SAIC Grad Rocking The Art World.

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TweetWood
A sampling.

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The Beachwood Tronc Line: Negative energy.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 2:02 PM | Permalink

December 4, 2017

The [Monday] Papers

I have a deadline today; I hope to finally have The Luis & Chuy Show tomorrow as well as an update of The Political Odds from the Beachwood Bookmaking Bureau.

Meanwhile . . .

"Students at the City Colleges of Chicago, the state's largest and most diverse community-college system, are eligible for a guaranteed admission program to the University of Illinois' flagship campus in Urbana under an expanded partnership this fall," the Champaign News-Gazette reports.

Gee, that sounds good.

"The UI Chicago has had a longstanding transfer agreement with City Colleges, but new partnerships were recently signed with the Urbana and Springfield campuses to make it easier for more Chicago students to transfer to those schools."

Yay!

"Currently, only a fraction of City College system graduates enroll at the Urbana campus - just 30 in 2016-17, about 3 percent of the campus' total transfer students, said Andy Borst, director of undergraduate admissions."

Well that number certainly needs boosting.

"Students who enroll in Chicago City Colleges will be guaranteed admission to any of the UI's three universities if they meet campus admission requirements and complete the mandatory community-college credits, officials said.

"Technically, the same is true for most transfer students, except in highly competitive engineering, business and LAS programs, Borst said. But the new program will provide intensive advising services to ensure students are taking the right classes to get into the school of their choice, he said.

"And top transfers will be eligible for scholarships through a new pilot program offered by the UI. Five scholarships of $2,500 a year for up to two years will be available initially - two to Urbana, two to Chicago and one to Springfield - and that number will eventually double, officials said."

Wait . . . just five scholarships (and just two to Urbana, which is championing the effort) of $2,500 a year for two years are available? That's three strikes - the just five part, the $2,500 part (annual tuition is more than $30,000), and the for just two years part.

What?

"The initiatives are designed to expand educational opportunities for Chicago-area students and improve diversity at the Urbana campus, UI President Tim Killeen said Thursday."

Not by much!

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New on today's Beachwood . . .

Call 911 - Bears Twitter Is On Fire
The way it could be worse is if Ryan Pace directed John Fox to contact the Russians.

SportsMonday: Bears Bereft
Even more so than the previously 1-10 49ers.

Chicagoetry: New Fucking Frying Pan
It's about feminism.

The Weekend In Chicago Rock
Featuring: Mest, Wage War, FireHouse, Three Bad Jacks, Elliot Moss, Hanson, and Winger.

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New on the Beachwood over the weekend . . .

Carried Interest Reform Is A Sham
Talking about closing a loophole for billionaires isn't the same as closing it.

The Week In Chicago Rock
Featuring: Fuerza Bruta, Rise Against, Rhett Miller, Greta Van Fleet, Gary Numan, Howie Day, Yelawolf, Potions, Lion's Law, and Papa Roach.

Beachwood Sports Radio: 'Til Death Do The Bears Part
With all due respect, there seems to be just one way the McCaskeys will do the right thing. Plus: Cat Trick!; Acknowledging The Bulls' Existence; The Derrick Rose Non-Tragedy; and Should We Be Paying More Attention To Northwestern Football?

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ChicagoGram

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ChicagoTube

Roy Chicago.

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BeachBook
A sampling.

National Security Agencies Are Evading Congressional Oversight.

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Evergreen.

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Rock 'N' Roll, Between The Covers.

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TV's False Portrayal Of Torture.

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TweetWood
A sampling.

Maybe he should run for state rep in the 22nd district, then.

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Well, it was a steering committee . . .

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Steinberg gonna Steinberg.

Plus, like John Kass, he's not even a Chicagoan; he's a longtime suburbanite.

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The Beachwood Tronc Line: Beachwood First.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 12:24 PM | Permalink

SportsMonday: Bears Bereft

You had to laugh. Bitterly sure, but still, it is amazing how sports work out sometimes.

What else was a fan to do as Robbie Gould screamed at the Bears sideline after his chip shot game-winning field goal Sunday at the end of the Bears' 15-14 loss to the 49ers. Gould, who is the Bears all-time leading scorer but was summarily cut from the team before last season, had actually said during the previous week that there was no such thing as a "revenge game."

His actions spoke slightly louder. Or should I say his screams actually were much louder.

Less funny was the fact that the 49ers had a much-better play-caller (head coach Kyle Shanahan) helping their much-better young quarterback have a much-better game than the Bears' Mitch Trubisky.

Arlington Heights native Jimmy Garoppolo was in command all over the field. Well, not quite all of the field. The red zone was certainly a problem. But it's hard not to believe that the 49ers will take care of that and then some in the next few years. They are a team with a bright future.

The Bears? Not so much.

Except for the ridiculousness - that was awesome and there is certainly the promise of more of that ahead.

Tarik Cohen's punt return touchdown was more ridiculous than even Devin Hester's craziest scoring effort. But perhaps the most unbelievable part of the play was the fact that no Bears committed penalties as Cohen first went backwards one way then the other and then in the blink of an eye broke upfield and didn't stop 'til he made it to the end zone. Sure enough, when Cohen broke another return in the second half, it was called back due to tight end Ben Braunecker's crushingly stupid, and completely needless, block in the back.

Cohen's score gave the Bears a decent lead and it felt like they were on their way. Well, maybe it felt that way for a couple minutes. Then the 49ers embarked on one of their half-dozen extended drives on the day and the optimism faded.

As far as the big picture goes, well, I got nothing new for 'ya.

As has been pointed out in this space more than a few times, firing the coach will not be enough. Surely that is more and more obvious. The 3-9 Bears don't even have as much talent as the bereft 2-10 49ers. I understand that teams need stability, but general manager Ryan Pace is the wrong guy to stabilize around.

For awhile I thought firing John Fox before the end of the season might be worth doing just to hand the offense completely over to offensive coordinator Dowell Loggains to see how it might play out.

But that doesn't matter at this point. Trubisky and the Bears will have to start again with a new offensive mind in the offseason. Whatever happens during the final month of this season is immaterial.

And when the Bears bring in that new guy, the potential for a downward spiral will actually be considerably higher than the chances for a turnaround. A huge factor in Aaron Rodgers' success in Green Bay has been stability in the front office and in the head coaching position. Mike McCarthy has been his coach the whole way through.

The possibility of using that model will end for the Bears' rookie signal-caller in the near future.

I think the laughter I hear at this point is coming from everywhere else in the NFC North.

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 11:00 AM | Permalink

The Weekend In Chicago Rock

You shoulda been there.

1. Mest at Bottom Lounge on Friday night.


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2. Wage War at Durty Nellie's in Palatine on Friday night.

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3. FireHouse at the Arcada in St. Charles on Friday night.

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4. Three Bad Jacks at the Brauerhouse in Lombard on Friday night.

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5. Elliot Moss at SPACE in Evanston on Saturday night.

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6. Hanson at the House of Blues on Sunday night.

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7. Winger at the Arcada in St. Charles on Friday night.

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 10:52 AM | Permalink

Call 911 - Bears Twitter Is On Fire

"If you're keeping a scorecard between the Bears and the 49ers and the big trade for the No. 2 pick, score a win for the 49ers in Round 1 and consider it a setback for the power brokers at Halas Hall," Brad Biggs writes for the Tribune.

"The 49ers' 15-14 victory, powered by five Robbie Gould field goals, added further embarrassment in a season gone wrong for the Bears. With the exception of a wild punt return by rookie Tarik Cohen, a 61-yard adventure that required a lot more steps than that in weaving-and-juking flash, the Bears were completely manhandled by what was a 1-10 football team."

Ouch.

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Lamarr Houston on his release by the Texans: "They just wanted young guys playing because they're not going to the playoffs any more."

He played almost every snap for the Bears' defense on Sunday.

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Fool's Gould:

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"Yes, the optics of what unfolded Sunday at Soldier Field are just brutal for the Bears, especially for Pace.

"He was beat by the kicker he cut, with the help of the quarterback (Jimmy Garoppolo) he potentially could have acquired, who happened to play at his own alma mater (Eastern Illinois).

"Only Bill Belichick knows if Garoppolo could have been a Bear, but one would think the haul Pace gave up for Mitch Trubisky (the No. 3 overall pick, two third-round picks and a fourth-rounder) could have been enough last spring.

"As it turned out, the 49ers got Garoppolo for just an early second-rounder and were on the receiving end of that haul Pace gave up for Trubisky.

"It's still way too early to know which franchise will benefit the most in the long run, but in the context of Sunday's loss to Gould and Garoppolo, it all looks bad. Really, really bad."

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"Saying the Bears hit rock bottom by losing to the 49ers actually does a disservice to rocks. The Bears still have to play the Browns on Christmas Eve."

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 9:51 AM | Permalink

Chicagoetry: New Fucking Frying Pan

New Fucking Frying Pan

Nobody tells me
Who I am.

Problematic in relationships
(Been a few years

Since the end of my last
Long-term commitment).

I want a fried egg?
I go to a diner
And order one or

I fry it myself.

It's about feminism:
In the early '70s, my mother
Decided she was going to get

A job.

"You want a fried egg?
Here's how you do it.
You want clean clothes?"
So now

I know how to do
All that shit.
Thanks, mom!

After (I'm guessing)
About six years with
My last frying pan I finally
Wore through the non-stick

Apparatus.

Needed a new frying pan.
Got my ass

A new fucking
Frying pan.

It's a beautiful thing.

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J.J. Tindall is the Beachwood's poet-in-residence. He welcomes your comments. Chicagoetry is an exclusive Beachwood collection-in-progress.

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More Tindall:

* Chicagoetry: The Book

* Ready To Rock: The Music

* Kindled Tindall: The Novel

* The Viral Video: The Match Game Dance

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 4:04 AM | Permalink

December 2, 2017

The Week In Chicago Rock

You shoulda been there.

1. Fuerza Bruta at Liar's Club on Thursday night.


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2. Rise Against at the Aragon on Thursday night.

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3. Rhett Miller at City Winery on Thursday night.

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4. Greta Van Fleet at Lincoln Hall on Thursday night.

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5. Gary Numan at Thalia Hall on Wednesday night.

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6. Howie Day at SPACE in Evanston on Thursday night.

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7. Yelawolf at the House of Blues on Wednesday night.

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8. Potions at the Owl on Sunday night.

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9. Papa Roach at the Aragon on Thursday night.

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10. Lion's Law at Liar's Club on Thursday night.

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 1:40 PM | Permalink

Carried Interest Reform Is a Sham

Donald Trump isn't exactly shy when it comes to denouncing things he doesn't like. And there's one particular part of the tax code that he denounced over and over both during the campaign and after taking office.

He said that the people benefiting from this portion of the code were "getting away with murder."

So you'd think that the tax bill being pushed through Congress with Trump's eager backing would be closing this loophole. But you'd be wrong. As you'll see in a bit, talking about closing the loophole isn't the same as closing it.

The loophole is called "carried interest." That's tax jargon for the share of investors' profits that goes to the managers of private equity funds, venture capital funds and hedge funds. The standard rate is 20 percent of a fund's profits, although there's wide variation, both up and down.

The loophole is that the managers' piece of the action comes from owning a piece of the partnership called a "profits interest" rather than getting a fee from the partnership.

When an investment has been held for more than a year before being sold, the managers' "profits interest" proceeds, like the gains that go to the "capital investors" who put up the money, is taxed as long-term capital gains rather than as ordinary income. Cap gains currently carry a top federal income tax rate of 23.8 percent, whereas "earned income" such as fees and salaries carries a max tax of 40.5 percent.

(The other part of the managers' fee - typically two percent a year of the investments under management - is treated as regular income.)

People, even including many Wall Street types whom I know, have been offended by the carried interest loophole for years.

After all, if you run a mutual fund and get a bonus based on your investment performance, that bonus is treated as earned income, not capital gains. So why should things be different for managers of a private equity or venture capital or hedge fund?

(I'm putting hedge funds last because although they're the most popular target, they typically don't hold individual investments long enough to qualify for capital gains treatment.)

In November, after being criticized because their tax legislation didn't deal with carried interest, House and Senate Republicans addressed the problem. Sort of, but not really.

Their "reform" doesn't require proceeds from "profits interests" to be treated as ordinary income - which would be real reform. Rather, the legislation requires that investments be held for more than three years to get capital gains treatment, rather than the current period of more than one year.

That's pretty much a joke, given that venture capital and buyout funds - whose managers are the biggest beneficiaries of the "carried interest" loophole - typically hold investments for well over three years before selling them. This legislation has the appearance of reform, but not the substance.

A spokesman for Kevin Brady, chairman of the tax-writing Ways and Means Committee, told the New York Times that the 3-year holding period "strikes the right balance for economic growth and fairness without stifling investment in American entrepreneurship." But this doesn't address the substance of the loophole, which is that carried interest payments are actually fees masquerading as capital gains, which means they are taxed at a much lower rate than fees.

Let me take you through this a bit.

Treating the people who run partnerships differently from the people who are passive investors in partnerships has been around forever. But when private equity, venture capital and hedge funds began pulling in hundreds of billions of dollars of capital and paying their managers billions a year of carried interest, what had been a relatively obscure tax provision turned into a big deal.

Lots of private equity types claim that special tax treatment for carried interest is vital to them. However, when you look at history, you can see that claim is dubious at best.

Blackstone and Carlyle, two of the biggest private equity firms (which now call themselves alternative investment firms), were founded in 1985 and 1987, respectively.

From 1988 through 1990, regular income and capital gains were taxed at the same maximum rate: 28 percent. And in 1991 and 1992, the year another big firm, TPG, was formed, top rates were almost the same: 31 percent for regular income, about 29 percent for cap gains. So unless they were betting on the rates to change - which is, shall we say, highly unlikely - the preferential rate for carried interest was no big deal.

The rates didn't really separate much until 1993. That year, the top regular income rate was more than 10 percentage points above the cap gains rate (39.6 percent to 29.2 percent), and the spread kept widening. (You can find the year by year rates here.)

Now what about Trump? Was he fouling his own nest by criticizing carried interest? I think not.

As best as I can tell from Trump's financial filings and his leaked 2005 federal income tax return, he doesn't play the carried interest game. So even if carried interest were to be reformed properly, it wouldn't cost him anything.

The bottom line: If the pending tax legislation becomes law, heaven forbid, and the carried interest loophole requires a three-year rather than a one-year waiting period, you can bet that Trump and the Republicans will boast about how they taught Wall Street a lesson. And it will be a pack of lies.

ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom. Sign up for their newsletter.

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Previously in carried interest:
* Patriotic Millionaires Vs. Carried Interest.

* The Somewhat Surreal Politics Of A Private Equity Tax Loophole Costing Us Billions (That Obama Refused To Close Despite Pledging To Do So).

* Fact-Checking Trump & Clinton On The Billionaire's Tax Break.

* Despite Trump Campaign Promise, Billionaires' Tax Loophole Survives Again.

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See also . . .

Previously in tax scammage:
* Deepwater Horizon Settlement Comes With $5.35 Billion Tax Windfall.

* Offshoring By 29 Companies Costs Illinois $1.2 Billion Annually.

* Government Agencies Allow Corporations To Write Off Billions In Federal Settlements.

* The Gang Of 62 Vs. The World.

* How The Maker Of TurboTax Fought Free, Simple Tax Filing.

* $1.4 Trillion: Oxfam Exposes The Great Offshore Tax Scam Of U.S. Companies.

* How Barclay's Turned A $10 Billion Profit Into A Tax Loss.

* Wall Street Stock Loans Drain $1 Billion A Year From German Taxpayers.

* German Finance Minister Cries Foul Over Tax Avoidance Deals.

* Prosecutor Targets Commerzbank For Deals That Dodge German Taxes.

* A Schlupfloch Here, A Schlupfloch There. Now It's Real Money.

* How Milwaukee Landlords Avoid Taxes.

* Study: 32 Illinois Fortune 500 Companies Holding At Least $147 Billion Offshore.

* Watch Out For The Coming Tax Break Trickery.

* When A 'Tax Bonanza' Is Actually A Huge Corporate Tax Break.

* The Hypocrisy Of Corporate Welfare: It's Bigger Than Trump.

* Oxfam Names World's Worst Tax Havens Fueling 'Global Race To Bottom.'

* Offshore Tax Havens Cost Average Illinois Small Business $5,789 A Year.

* State Tax Incentives To Corporations Don't Work.

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Previously in the Paradise Papers:
* 'Paradise Papers' Reveal Tax Avoidance, Shady Dealings Of World's Rich And Powerful.

* Just How Much Money Is Held Offshore? Hint: A SHIT-TON.

* Development Dreams Lost In The Offshore World.

* Keeping Offshore 'Hush Hush,' But Why?

* Tax Havens Are Alive With The Sound Of Music.

* Today In Tax Avoidance Of The Ultra-Wealthy.

* Go To Town With This Offshore Leaks Database.

* The Paradise Papers: The View From Africa And Asia.

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Previously in the Panama Papers:
* The Panama Papers: Remarkable Global Media Collaboration Cracks Walls Of Offshore Tax Haven Secrecy.

* The Panama Papers: Prosecutors Open Probes.

* The [Monday] Papers.

* Adventures In Tax Avoidance.

* Mossack Fonseca's Oligarchs, Dictators And Corrupt White-Collar Businessmen.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! They're All In It Together.

* Meet The Panama Papers Editor Who Handled 376 Reporters In 80 Countries.

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Comments welcome.


Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 12:34 PM | Permalink

December 1, 2017

The Beachwood Radio Sports Hour #177: 'Til Death Do The Bears Part

With all due respect, there seems to be just one way the McCaskeys will do the right thing. Plus: Cat Trick!; Acknowledging The Bulls' Existence; The Derrick Rose Non-Tragedy; and Should We Be Paying More Attention To Northwestern Football?


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SHOW NOTES

* 177.

:16: Pace Case.

* Trading Places.

* The Savage Truth.

* Tony Tre McBride.

* Why Trubisky Will Have To Be To Tom Brady To Make Pace's Draft Day Deal Worth It.

* Dickerson: Was Mitchell Trubisky Worth The Price?

* Michael, George And Mommy.

* In Trestman We Trust!

* Mulligan: Shouldn't The Fates Of John Fox And Ryan Pace Be Interlocked?

* Rozner: Another Day, Another Narrative Bites The Dust.

* Pompeii: The problem with Ryan Pace's free agent signings.

* Haugh: Are The Bears Putting More Faith In Ryan Pace Than He Deserves?

* Haugh: Bears' Brian McCaskey On Hearing Loss: 'Technology Has Really Saved Me.'

* Assignment Desk: What Happens When Virginia Dies?

* Haugh: It's Time Mitch Trubisky Reminded Us Why Bears Gave 49ers A Draft Haul.

* Kid Loggains.

* Podium vs. Lectern.

* Gabriel: Sources: Neither John Fox Nor Vic Fangio In Chicago Bears' Future Plans.

(To which we say, "Good!")

38:45: Cat Trick!

* Coffman: "You don't salvage a point at home against the Stars!"

* Is this the end for The Toews & Kane Show?

47:07: Acknowledging The Bulls' Existence.

* Coffman: "The bloom is off the Markkanen."

Awww, c'mon!

* Sidebar: The Derrick Rose Non-Tragedy.

54:37: Should We Be Paying More Attention To Northwestern Football?

* Greenberg: "I would've defied anyone to spend three-plus hours at Memorial Stadium on Saturday and try to see the glass - any glass - as half-full. The so-called Land of Lincoln rivalry game, scheduled on the final weekend of the regular season because it's supposed to be a big deal, was a fly on the rear ends of, say, Alabama-Auburn and Michigan-Ohio State. You know, the real rivalry games. Northwestern-Illinois was so irrelevant, it was almost as if it didn't exist. Fitzgerald referred to the Illini's home as a 'sleepy building.' It was a nicer way to say 'empty.'"

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STOPPAGE: 3:12

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For archives and other shows, see The Beachwood Radio Network.

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 4:48 PM | Permalink

The [Friday] Papers

ETA for The Luis & Chuy Show: This weekend.

Sneak preview:

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In pre-production: The Beachwood Radio Sports Hour #177 and The Week In Chicago Rock.

Meanwhile . . .

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New on the Beachwood today . . .

Time For The Royal Scroungers To Earn Their Keep
Remaking that special relationship.

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ChicagoGram

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ChicagoTube

Chicago sends off first Special Olympics flag football team.

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BeachBook

At Least Four Chicago-Area Women Included Among 180 Reporting Sexual Assaults At Massage Envy.

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All Big Mac Creator Got Was A Plaque.

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Laura Kipnis: Kick Against The Pricks.

This is an interesting piece but it's not easy for everyone to be Laura Kipnis and just kick their assailants in the balls.

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Why He Can't Vote For Pritzker.

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Among Bettors, College Football Is Pushing The NFL Aside.

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Bring your own tap.

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TweetWood
A sampling.

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The Beachwood Tronc Line: Baked.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 8:28 AM | Permalink

Time For The Royal Scroungers To Earn Their Keep

Remaking that special relationship.


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Previously in Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter!:

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Explains The Economy.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! It's Shit Crap News, Tim.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Is Going To Paris.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Grow Some Balls; Tell The Truth.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! MP Is A Wanker Santa.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Merry Fucking Christmas.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! New Year's Rant.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Sexy Skype.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! TTIP Is Boring Shit.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! The Truth About Teachers & Doctors.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Valentine's Day 2016.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! On The 'Environment" Beat.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Political Theater As News.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Charter Wankers International.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! The Panama Papers: They're All In It Together.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Answer The Fucking Question.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Snapchatting The Environment.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Election Fever!

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Day-Glo Fuck-Nugget Trump.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Dickens Meets The Jetsons.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Tony Blair: Comedy Genius Or Psychopath?

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! What Real Business News Should Look Like.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Facts Are No Longer Newsworthy.

* Pie's Brexit.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Real Life Is Not Game Of Thrones.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Labor: The Clue's In The Title!

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! The Pie Olympics.

* Occupy Pie.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Where Is The War Against Terrorble Mental Health Services?

* Progressive Pie.

* The BBC's Bake-Off Bollocks.

* Pie Commits A Hate Crime.

* Pie Interviews A Teenage Conservative.

* Jonathan Pie's Idiot's Guide To The U.S. Election.

* President Trump: How & Why.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! All The News Is Fake!

* Happy Christmas From Jonathan Pie.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! 2016 In Review.

* Inauguration Reporting.

* New Year: New Pie?

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Make The Air Fair.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! A Gift To Trump?

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Strong And Unstable.

* Pie & Brand: Hate, Anger, Violence & Carrying On.

* Socialism Strikes Back!

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Election Carnage.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! Papering Over Poverty.

* Jonathan Pie, TV Reporter! The Queen's Speech.

* Showdown: North Korea vs. Trump.

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Plus:

If Only All TV Reporters Did The News Like This.

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And:

Australia Is Horrific.

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Comments welcome.

Posted by Beachwood Reporter at 12:14 AM | Permalink

MUSIC - The Week In Chicago Rock.
TV - Time For Royal Scroungers To Earn Their Keep.
POLITICS - The Political Odds.
SPORTS - All Is Not Forgiven.

BOOKS - Before Breitbart.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - Chicagoetry: New Fucking Frying Pan.


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