‘A known criminal threat actor’ / ‘How the hell dare he?’ / ‘Do Not Drive’ / News quiz

Chicago Public Square’s taking a few days off. Look for a fresh news quiz next Friday, with full service resuming Tuesday, Feb. 20. Meanwhile, as always, catch news updates of note on the Square Facebook page.

‘A known criminal threat actor.’ Lurie Children’s Hospital says the cyberattack that has crippled its electronic networks for more than a week is the work of a party reported to the FBI.
 The hospital’s chief medical officer says it took its systems offline deliberately “to protect the information of our patients, workforce and organization at large.”

Palace Grill grilled. A fire late last night ravaged the iconic diner near the United Center.
 The fire broke out seven hours after the Grill had closed. (Photo: Chicago Fire Department.)

‘How the hell dare he?’ President Biden let loose last night on special counsel Robert Hur, who concluded no criminal charges should be leveled against Biden for “willfully” retaining and disclosing classified documents after his vice presidency—partly because a jury would have a tough time convicting a “well-meaning, elderly man with a poor memory.”
 Although Biden insisted his “memory is fine” and asserted “I know what the hell I am doing,” he mixed up the presidents of Egypt and Mexico.
 Wonkette’s Evan Hurst on Hur: “There ain’t dick this guy can charge Biden with, or he would.
 Pod Save America co-host Dan Pfeiffer says, regardless, the report will put “Biden’s age and competence centerstage for the foreseeable future.”
 Stephen Colbert: “If you’re in a fantasy league for presidential indictments, it’s still Trump, 91; every other president ever, zero.”
 Here’s the full report.

‘Almost a certainty that Trump will stay on the ballot.’ Law professor Joyce Vance is among many who see the Supreme Court’s demeanor in yesterday’s historic hearing pointing to a possibly unanimous victory for Donald Trump in Colorado.
 Poynter’s Tom Jones: “A panel of CNN commentators said it appeared the Supreme Court was ‘looking for an off ramp’ to allow Trump to stay on the ballot. Apparently, they didn’t have to look too hard.”

AI hang-up. The Federal Communications Commission has unanimously imposed an immediate ban on robocalls with voices generated by artificial intelligence …
 … especially those aimed at misleading voters …

‘An expensive tool’ with no ‘significant impact on shooting incidents.’ The Cook County state’s attorney’s office is unimpressed with the ShotSpotter gunfire detection technology on the bubble for renewal by Chicago’s police department.
 Tensions rose at the end of last night’s public forum on ShotSpotter.
 Acknowledging that the jury’s still out on the tech, a Tribune editorial suggests the mayor let his new police chief make the call.

‘Pointed but polite.’ Politico’s Shia Kapos recounts last night’s first debate between the two Democratic candidates for Cook County state’s attorney …
 … a confrontation you can see here.

It’s a mistake to visit these dying places again.’ But Sun-Times columnist Neil Steinberg did return to “the still-grand Marshall Field’s box with crumbs of Macy’s rattling around inside.”
 The Barnes & Noble bookstore chain’s expanding in Chicago—including a new store in a former Wicker Park Walgreens …
 … and, Block Club Chicago reports, that has some local bookstores worried.

‘Do Not Drive.’ Carfax reports the number of vehicles still on the road nationwide despite urgent recalls has increased dramatically since last May.
 Check yours for recalls by entering your license plate here.
 The Chicago Auto Show opens tomorrow—for the first time in almost a century, minus one of the Big Three car companies.

‘The economics of recycling aren’t just busted—they’re preposterous.’ Science journalist Matt Simon turns a harsh spotlight on the plastics industry’s impact …
 … in an excerpt from his new book, A Poison Like No Other, which explains “how microplastics have corrupted our planet and our bodies.”

‘Animated toilet water.’ Men Yell at Me proprietor Lyz Lenz’s Dinguses of the Week: Taylor Swift Super Bowl conspiracy theorists.
 Critic Richard Roeper gives three stars to CBS’ post-Super Bowl premiere of a new series starring Carl Sandburg High School alumnus Justin Hartley …
 … but the Trib’s Nina Metz says “the show needs stronger storytelling.”
 Jared Newman at TechHive: Disney, Warner Bros. Discovery and Fox’s forthcoming joint all-sports streamer “might finally blow up the pay-TV bundle as we know it.”

75% is a passing grade, right?
Can you beat your Chicago Public Square columnist’s middling 6/8 score on this week’s news quiz, served up by The Conversation’s quizmaster, past Jeopardy! Tournament of Champions winner Fritz Holznagel?
 Question No. 1: “What’s in the envelopes?

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