October 11, 2017

The impeachment case / Ditka apologizes, sorta / Farewell to loonies

THE IMPEACHMENT CASE. A 108-page report from the Brookings Institution concludes that President Trump “likely obstructed justice”—and that, if special prosecutor Mueller concurs, he or Congress could take action.

A key donor is demanding Democrats pledge to impeach. (Photo: takomabibelot.)
NBC News: In July—shortly before Secretary of State Tillerson called Trump a moron—the president alarmed his military leaders by proposing a tenfold increase in the U.S. nuclear arsenal.
The president’s press secretary has a problem with the truth.
But, hey, Trump seems at least to hold some sway with the NFL.

THE U.S. ARMY, IN A PINCH. Struggling to maintain troop strength in an economy where fewer consider the military an employer of last resort, the Army is loosening its requirements—including more waivers for past use of pot.
The New York Times: Under Trump, Guantanamo Bay prison authorities are letting hunger-striking prisoners deteriorate beyond a point that previously prompted medical intervention.
An advocate for Illinois prisoners says the state’s treatment for mentally ill inmates consists of four questions asked daily: “Are you going to kill yourself? Are you going to kill someone else? Are you taking medication? Do you know where you are?

DITKA APOLOGIZES, SORTA. Mike Ditka says he’s “sorry if anyone was offended” by his assertion “There has been no oppression in the last 100 years that I know of.”
The Sun-Times’ Neil Steinberg: Ditka spouts “the nonsense that a big hunk of white guydom believes in their hearts or, rather, in the cavities at the center of their chests where their hearts would be if they weren’t so, you know, pig ignorant.”
Columnist Mary Schmich: Ditka has BS disease.
Columnist Mary Mitchell: “The world according to Ditka is the reason we are stuck in the racial firestorm we are in today.” (2010 photo: Jeff Morey.)

POP TAX OUT. Repeal of Cook County’s sweetened beverage tax is a near-certainty today.
John Kass: An unusual tax revolt reveals the county’s citizens are no longer ready to “doff their caps, bow, and shut up and take it.”
Eric Zorn: This fight has at least “heightened awareness of the ill effects of excessive sugary-drink consumption.”
But Chicago Public Schools are raising property taxes.

DOESN’T UNDERSTAND ‘CONFLICT OF INTEREST.’ Powerful Chicago Ald. Carrie Austin defends her decision to hire her son as her ward superintendent—even though he didn’t meet the qualifications.
On the agenda at today’s Chicago City Council meeting: What one alderman calls a “Russian roulette” plan to cut the city’s cost of borrowing. You can follow the meeting on video hereif you’re using … wait for it … Internet Explorer. (Square has asked the City Clerk’s office when it will update its antiquated tech.)

NEUROSCIENTIST CHARGED. Police say have accused a man who holds a Northwestern Ph.D. in neuroscience of pushing a stranger onto the CTA Blue Line tracks.
Meet the latest crop of MacArthur Foundation “genius grant” winners—including two Chicagoans.

‘240 LBS. BLACK MAN STOMPS OUT HOLLYWOOD HONCHO.’ Fear of a headline like that is what actor and former NFL star Terry Crews says kept him from retaliating against a movie exec who groped Crews’ genitals and “grinned like a jerk” as he did it.
Sky News’ clickable scorecard of celebrities who’ve accused, criticized and defended movie mogul Harvey Weinstein.
Did NBC kill the Weinstein story?
A former New York Daily News columnist recalls this Weinstein threat: “I’m the scariest motherf**ker you’ll ever have as an enemy in this town!
Weinstein’s wife says she’s leaving him.
An essay from Samantha Bee’s Full Frontal: Workplace Etiquette FAQ for Harvey Weinstein or Any Other Giant Piece of S**t.”

FAREWELL TO LOONIES. Sears Canada is closing all its stores this month. (Sept. 26 photo of recently closed Sears store in Chicago.)
Amazon launches a waterproof Kindle e-reader.
…And launches a new plan to capture teenagers’ cash.

‘I’M SORRY TO ANYONE THIS OFFENDED.’ Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg serves up another non-apology apology after using the devastation in Puerto Rico as a backdrop for his cartoon avatar’s demonstration of virtual reality tech.
Do you have a right to free speech on social media owned by private corporations like Facebook and Twitter?
Foreign governments might be using your computer’s anti-virus software—notably stuff from Russia-based Kaspersky Lab—against you.


THANKS. To reader Chris Koenig for content suggestions.

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