July 25, 2017

Scouting report / Psych case / Red light green light

SCOUTING REPORT. President Trump’s politically charged speech to the Boy Scouts of America’s National Jamboree—featuring (by one count) at least 14 inappropriate moments (or was it 17? Or 29?), including what A.V. Club’s Sam Barsanti calls a yacht sex story—may have violated the Scouts’ own policies.

Now, the organization is trying to distance itself from comparisons to the Nazis’ Hitler Youth movement.
Parent and political commentator Dustin Rowles: “I will be supremely disappointed in America if a lot of parents aren’t pulling their kids from the Boy Scouts.”
From the Washington Post in October: Trump seemingly used his charity’s money to pay his son’s $7 Scouting registration fee.

‘ARE YOU AVAILABLE TO BE THE ATTORNEY GENERAL?’ A telling question to conservative broadcaster Hugh Hewitt from the president’s new spokesman, Anthony Scaramucci—who concedes Trump “probably” wants to replace Jeff Sessions.
… A reasonable conclusion after Trump’s early-morning tweets condemning Sessions.

PSYCH CASE. Acknowledging that Trump’s behavior “is so different from anything we’ve seen before,” a leading psychiatry group is making a historic shift, giving its members clearance to comment on his mental state.
A White House communications staff purge is taking shape.

WHATEVER. Developing: Many Senate Republicans don’t know what’s in their health bill or what it would do, but they’re planning to vote on it anyway today.
Some of the changes that may be forthcoming.
Ex-House Speaker John Boehner says Republicans are “never … going to repeal and replace Obamacare.”
And if thousands of nuns have their way, he may be right.

‘THE TRUMP EPA CONTINUES TO PUT SPECIAL INTERESTS BEFORE THE HEALTH AND SAFETY OF THE PEOPLE THEY SERVE.’ New York’s attorney general and his counterparts in 10 states—including Illinois—are going to court against the government for delaying chemical plant safety rules.
EPA chief Scott Pruitt’s expensive travel at taxpayer expense is under investigation.
With more than a million residents of Rome facing water rationing in a prolonged heatwave, the Vatican has turned off 100 fountains.

‘THE SHEER NUMBER OF MURDERS MAY BE OVERWHELMING INVESTIGATORS.’ WGN-TV investigates Chicago’s low rate of solved cases.
Variety says the company positioned to take over WGN, Sinclair Broadcast Group, aims for “a radical reinvention” of TV.
For the first time, MSNBC finishes first in the primetime cable TV ratings. The Wrap says one factor may be MSNBC’s hosts opening their shows with “powerful left-leaning political monologues.”



RED LIGHT GREEN LIGHT. A key Chicago City Council committee has OK’d a settlement for drivers denied due process after being slapped with red-light and speed camera tickets. Next stops: The full City Council, then a Cook County judge.
The CTA has reopened a Blue Line “L” station after renovation.
A renovated five-way intersection is open at Western, Belmont and Clybourn.

CHIPPING IN. A Wisconsin company is offering to implant its workers’ hands with microchips they can use to scan into the building and buy food at work.
… Which brings to mind Rivet Radio reporter George Drake Jr.’s intrepid decision last year to do the same thing. (Photo: George Drake.)
And, speaking of which: Chicago dog owners are routinely ignoring the city’s leash laws.
The Portillo’s restaurant chain is expanding in Minnesota.

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