Description: In 1937, Chicago Police, acting on behalf of the “Little Steel” industrialists who wanted to end the New Deal, fired unprovoked into a crowd of peaceful strikers and their families. Then came a PR spin fight. Bill and Rachel discuss.
Spencer Ackerman, reporting from The Guardian, investigated a huge, secret detention facility being operated by the Chicago Police Department. Excerpt from the lengthy report:
The Chicago police department operates an off-the-books interrogation compound, rendering Americans unable to be found by family or attorneys while locked inside what lawyers say is the domestic equivalent of a CIA black site.
The facility, a nondescript warehouse on Chicago’s west side known as Homan Square, has long been the scene of secretive work by special police units. Interviews with local attorneys and one protester who spent the better part of a day shackled in Homan Square describe operations that deny access to basic constitutional rights.
Alleged police practices at Homan Square, according to those familiar with the facility who spoke out to the Guardian after its investigation into Chicago police abuse, include:
– Keeping arrestees out of official booking databases.
– Beating by police, resulting in head wounds.
– Shackling for prolonged periods.
– Denying attorneys access to the “secure” facility.
– Holding people without legal counsel for between 12 and 24 hours, including people as young as 15.
At least one man was found unresponsive in a Homan Square “interview room” and later pronounced dead.
It’s almost as if some politicians just set out to validate political stereotypes. Just drink in the fact Illinois’s wealthy Republican governor-elect made it one week from the election before the corruption and campaign finance violations came to light.
Illinois Governor-elect Bruce Rauner accepted more than $140,000 worth of campaign donations from executives affiliated with firms in which Illinois pension systems have investments, according to documents reviewed by the International Business Times. The campaign donations flowed to Rauner despite state and federal rules designed to prevent pension investment managers from donating to candidates for public offices that oversee state pension systems. As governor, Rauner will now appoint the trustees who oversee Illinois’ pension investment decisions.
When IBTimes first presented the campaign finance documents to officials at the Illinois State Board of Investment late last week, they said they had never been asked about the donations. Days later, those officials announced they are now conducting a formal review of the system’s private investment managers to see if they complied with campaign finance disclosure requirements.
The SEC’s 2011 “pay-to-play” rule effectively bars executives at firms that earn fees from managing public pension money from donating to candidates for offices that can influence public pension investments. The Illinois governor appoints trustees to the boards overseeing the $40 billion Illinois Teachers Retirement System and the $13 billion Illinois State Board of Investment.
Gov.-elect Rauner is also himself still a partnership stakeholder in a subsidiary of a company he used to run, which also manages public pension money.
I look forward to learning whether Wheaton City Councillor and Lieutenant Governor-elect Evelyn Sanguinetti is cut out to lead a state of 12.9 million people (to Wheaton’s 53,000!) when Gov. Rauner inevitably resigns, is removed by the legislature, or is sent to prison.
I also wonder if, as his hand-picked running mate, she’ll carry through his radical agenda to “reform” Illinois pensions and carve out special anti-union “Right to Work” economic zones, along with other big business goodies disguised as help for small businesses.