Chicago's 2nd tallest / Surfers + Chicago / Starbucks' crisis

Chicago’s second tallest. The new owners of Tribune Tower are proposing to put a 1,422-foot high-rise just northeast of the tower. (Rendering: Golub & Co. and CIM Group.)
The newspaper that built the tower—and its sibling papers under the company now known as Tronc—may be bought by a Japanese conglomerate.
Axios rounds up of the sharks circling Tronc.
Meanwhile, another Illinois-based company whose predecessor was founded by a McCormick, Navistar, may be acquired by Germany’s Volkswagen AG.

Cops’ free parking scam. Chicago’s inspector general is slamming Chicago Police for giving off-duty cops, family and friends no-charge spots at the United Center.
Six months in, the mayor’s plan to encourage cops to buy homes in Chicago’s more violent neighborhoods has led to just two sales.

Surfers + Chicago. The city and a coalition of surfers are teaming up to oppose a settlement between the Trump administration and U.S. Steel over the release of poisonous chromium into Lake Michigan—a deal they say goes too easy on the company.
EPA chief Scott Pruitt is in hot water with a government watchdog agency for spending $43,000 on a soundproof phone booth without legislative clearance.
And he upgraded to a bigger, customized SUV with bullet-resistant seat covers.

‘If this is no big deal, why did Hannity work to keep his name out of the case?’ CNN’s Chris Cillizza has five questions for Fox News host Sean Hannity after the revelation Hannity was the mysterious third client of President Trump’s personal lawyer, Michael Cohen.
CNN’s Brian Stelter: “Hannity has few rules, and now Fox News has a problem.”
The Washington Post: “Hannity’s idea of ‘attorney-client privilege’ was right out of Breaking Bad.”
… and the late-night comics go wild. (Screenshot: The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.)
Wonkette’s Evan Hurst: “The 436,287 Best Times Sean Hannity Tongue-Bathed His ‘Lawyer’ Michael Cohen On Live TV!
Washington Post columnist Brian Klaas on Twitter: “Imagine how Sean Hannity would respond if … Obama’s personal lawyer … was also secretly the lawyer for Rachel Maddow—and she had been using her show to defend the lawyer without disclosing that relationship.”

‘Parents are coming after him.’ Two lawsuits accuse Infowars conspiracy blowhard Alex Jones of defamation for claiming the 2012 massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School was a hoax.
Five years after a gun-reform movement collapsed in Congress, an Obama speechwriter says the survivors of the Parkland, Florida, massacre “are the ones we’ve been waiting for.”
Mayor Emanuel’s plan to yank city business from banks that do business with gunmakers is running into opposition … from the banks.

‘Indigestible.’ On Facebook, columnist Eric Zorn is asking readers to describe Trump in one word. He’s received hundreds of suggestions.
Vox: Trump’s legal battle over the seized Michael Cohen documents, explained.

Starbucks’ crisis. The company faces continuing protests after the arrest of two black men who were awaiting the arrival of a white business associate, but the reaction of Starbucks’ CEO is winning praise: “He went in head first and he took the blame for it.”
A Chicago water department supervisor was suspended for not reporting offensive emails—including one that portrayed then-President Obama being bid on at a Southern slave auction.
The city’s inspector general is accusing a water department construction worker and a “director-level” worker at the city’s Cultural Affairs Department of sexual harassment on the job.

Invocation. Invocation. Invocation. Reader Aaron Barnhart—the creator of the History Is Power website, and a person whose pioneering email newsletter work in the ’90s inspired Chicago Public Square and its predecessors—was first (of many) to note a glaring typo in yesterday’s edition.
If you’re first to report an error to, your name can appear here, too.
Are you listening to the afternoon Chicago Public Square Newscast? Check it out.
An unprecedented thing: An ad was the most-clicked item in yesterday’s Square. To be precise, this one:

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