WBEZ | Jim Laski http://www.wbez.org/tags/jim-laski Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en More prison time for Blagojevich than Illinois' other convicted governors? http://www.wbez.org/story/more-prison-time-blagojevich-illinois-other-convicted-governors-94538 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-December/2011-12-02/RS3056_AP090414013129-blago Charles Rex Arbogast.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Former Ill. Gov. Rod Blagojevich is expected to be sentenced this week, following a hearing in federal court that begins on Tuesday. Blagojevich was convicted on 17 corruption counts this past summer, and another one in 2010 – totaling a maximum prison sentence of 305 years.</p><p>The ex-governor’s lawyers want Judge James Zagel to sentence him to no more than three to four years. The prosecution is asking for 15-20 years, pointing out that a Blagojevich co-conspirator who “held no elected office of trust,” Tony Rezko, recently got a 10½ year sentence. (Rezko’s case was not handled by Zagel.)</p><p>Another reason the government gives for a long sentence: deterrence. “Sadly, Illinois has a history of corruption in government,” the prosecution writes. “The sentences imposed on previous criminals for public corruption crimes were not sufficient to dissuade Blagojevich from engaging in a myriad of criminal acts.”</p><p>Let’s now review the sentences those “previous criminals” got. If the government gets its way, Blagojevich will spend far more time behind bars than any other member of the imprisoned governors’ club.</p><p><strong>Governors</strong></p><p><em>George Ryan:</em> Governor from 1999-2003, Illinois secretary of state from 1991 to 1999. Found guilty in 2006 on 18 federal counts regarding actions during time as secretary of state and as governor. Sentenced to 6½ years, imprisoned from 2007 to present, with an estimated release date of July 4, 2013.</p><p><em>Otto Kerner:</em> Governor from 1961-1968, federal appeals court judge from 1968 to 1974. Found guilty in 1973 on 17 federal counts regarding actions during time as governor. Sentenced to 3 years, but imprisoned for less than a year (from 1974 to 1975) because of poor health.</p><p><em>Dan Walker: </em>Governor from 1973 to 1977. Pleaded guilty in 1987 to three federal counts regarding actions occurring after he left office. Initially sentenced to seven years, but released after a year and a half (from 1988 to 1989) because of health concerns.</p><p><strong>Other Illinois politicians</strong></p><p><em>Dan Rostenkowski</em>: Congressman from 1959 to 1995. Pleaded guilty in 1996 to two federal counts regarding actions during time in Congress. Sentenced to 17 months, imprisoned for 15 months, from 1996 to 1997.</p><p><em>Mel Reynolds: </em>Congressman from 1993 to 1995. Found guilty in 1995 on state counts related to having sex with a minor. Sentenced to five years. Then found guilty in 1997 on 15 federal counts regarding actions during campaigns for Congress. Sentenced to six and a half years. President Clinton commuted his sentence in 2001.</p><p><em>Betty Loren Maltese</em>: Cicero town president from 1993 to 2002. Found guilty in 2002 on six federal counts regarding actions during time as town president. Sentenced to eight years, imprisoned for seven years, from 2003 to 2010.</p><p><em>Jim Laski: </em>Chicago city clerk from 1995 to 2006. Pleaded guilty in 2006 on one federal count regarding actions during time as alderman and city clerk. Sentenced to two years, imprisoned for less than a year, from 2007 to 2008.</p><p><em>Tom Keane:</em> Alderman from 1945 to 1974. Found guilty in 1974 on 18 federal counts regarding actions during his time as alderman. Sentenced to five years, imprisoned for less than two years, from 1976 to 1978.</p><p><strong>Sources: Archives from the Chicago Tribune and Chicago Sun-Times, and “<a href="http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&amp;rct=j&amp;q=alderman%20tom%20keane%20bio&amp;source=web&amp;cd=8&amp;ved=0CEgQFjAH&amp;url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.uic.edu%2Fdepts%2Fpols%2FChicagoPolitics%2FAnti-corruptionReport.pdf&amp;ei=-IjWTu_bB8To2AXs_IHjAQ&amp;usg=AFQjCNF_b8GUPVHInlxue8VYkTuFhvJ18A&amp;cad=rja">Curing Corruption in Illinois</a>” by Thomas J. Gradel, Dick Simpson and Andris Zimelis from the UIC Political Science Department (2009)</strong></p></p> Mon, 05 Dec 2011 06:00:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/more-prison-time-blagojevich-illinois-other-convicted-governors-94538 It's criminal: WGN expands 'Sports Central' into oblivion http://www.wbez.org/blog/robert-feder/its-criminal-wgn-expands-sports-central-oblivion <p><p style="text-align: center;"><a href="/sites/default/files/archives/blogs//Jim-Laski.jpg"><img height="225" width="400" src="/sites/default/files/archives/blogs//Jim-Laski.jpg" alt="" class="size-full wp-image-19072" /></a></p><p><code> </code> <code> </code> Robservations on the media beat:</p><ul> <li>Only in the bizarre up-is-down, black-is-white alternate universe of WGN-AM (720) would the cancellation of Chicago's longest running sports talk show be called an <em>expansion</em> of sports. &quot;WGN RADIO EXPANDS SPORTS COVERAGE AND ADDS NEW GENERAL TALK SHOW&quot; read the headline of a press release issued late Thursday by the Tribune Co.-owned news/talk station. As of April 12, &quot;Sports Central&quot; will be replaced from 7 to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday by a &quot;current events talk show&quot; fronted by <a href="/feder/2010/02/they-did-the-crimes-so-why-is-wgn-punishing-us/15707">convicted felon</a> (and manifestly unqualified radio rookie)&sbquo;&nbsp;<strong><a href="http://www.wgnradio.com/shows/jimlaski/">Jim Laski.</a> <span style="font-weight: normal;">What a disgrace.&sbquo;&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wgnradio.com/shows/sportscentral/wgnam-sportscentral-information,0,1106767.story"><strong>David Kaplan,</strong></a> who's hosted the weeknight sports franchise since 1997, will shift to Cubs post-game shows and other sports features. It's all the handiwork of obstinate program director <a href="/feder/2009/11/a-rude-pig-virus-infects-wgn-radio/8321"><strong>Kevin &quot;Pig Virus&quot; Metheny,</strong></a> who took on Laski, the former city clerk of Chicago who served 11 months in prison for accepting bribes, as a weekend host -- and his personal reclamation project. Said Metheny:</span></strong></li> </ul> <blockquote>&quot;In the past few months, Laski has built a strong track record on WGN.&sbquo;&nbsp; He's a fascinating character who was called to public service and eventually behaved criminally. He paid for his crime, is sincerely contrite and is moving on. He has a unique insider's perspective on life in and around Chicago.&quot;</blockquote> <ul> <li>WGN bosses cried foul last month when I <a href="/feder/2010/02/surprise-don-roma-chicagos-new-morning-faves/16088">reported here</a> that the station had lost in the morning-drive ratings for the first time ever to Citadel Broadcasting news/talk WLS-AM (890). They said I'd been misled. They said it was a mistake. They said I'd misread the numbers. Well, guess what? It happened again: WLS' <strong>Don</strong> and <strong>Roma Wade</strong> beat WGN's <a href="/feder/2010/03/whos-on-first-in-radio-it-depends-on-who-keeps-score/16486"><strong>Greg Jarrett</strong></a> among all listeners age 12 and older in just-released Arbitron figures for February.&sbquo;&nbsp;Any way you slice it&sbquo;&nbsp; -- &nbsp;from 6 to 10 a.m. (as Arbitron defines morning drive) or from 5 to 9 a.m. (the actual hours when Jarrett competes with the Wades) -- &nbsp;WLS comes out on top of WGN.</li> <li>After a year that saw <strong>Jerry Springer</strong> and <strong>Steve Wilkos</strong> move to Connecticut, and <strong>Oprah Winfrey</strong> announce the end of her Chicago-based talk show, the impending <a href="http://newsblogs.chicagotribune.com/towerticker/2010/03/disneyabc-to-cancel-at-the-movies-siskel-and-eberts-old-show.html">demise of &quot;At the Movies&quot;</a>&nbsp;marks another setback for Chicago productions on the national stage. For ABC-owned WLS-Channel 7, which has been the show's home base since 2001, it also means a loss of income from Disney-ABC Domestic Television and ABC Media Productions. &quot;We were both honored and thrilled to produce the show for nine years -- &nbsp;an achievement of which we can be very proud,&quot; said <strong>Emily Barr,</strong> president and general manager of Channel 7. Although the syndicated movie-review show never recovered from the departure of hosts <strong>Roger Ebert </strong>and <strong>Richard Roeper,</strong> at least it will die with dignity under <strong>Michael Phillips</strong> and <strong>Tony Scott.</strong> No word on what will replace it on Channel 7's lineup this fall, but a likely source of programming could be the <a href="http://www.wbez.org/feder/2010/01/even-in-tough-times-abc-7-succeeds-with-live-well-hd/11355">Live Well HD</a> digital channel.</li> <li><strong><a href="http://www.j2sc.com/joane.htm">J</a></strong><strong><a href="http://www.j2sc.com/joane.htm">oan Esposito,</a></strong>the former Chicago television news anchor, has agreed to speak publicly for the first time about her battle with cancer. In a story expected to air in May on Tribune Co.-owned WGN-Channel 9, Esposito will tell medical reporter <a href="http://www.wgntv.com/about/station/newsteam/dinabair/"><strong>Dina Bair</strong></a><strong> </strong>that she was diagnosed with lymphoma three years ago. It's now in remission. Bair, who worked with Esposito as an intern at Channel 7 and as a producer at NBC-owned WMAQ-Channel 5, also survived her own cancer battle with melanoma.</li> <li>At long last <strong>Roe Conn</strong> is expected to announce today that traffic reporter <a href="http://www.wlsam.com/Article.asp?id=152536&amp;spid=6789"><strong>Christina Filiaggi</strong></a><strong> </strong>will be returning to his afternoon show on WLS-AM. She could be back on as early as Monday. Filiaggi, who first joined Conn's show in 2001, was dropped in a budget cut in February 2008, brought back in June 2008, and dropped a second time in May 2009. Third time's the charm?</li> <li>Wedding bells are ringing this weekend for <a href="http://www.myfoxchicago.com/dpp/about_us/personalities/Tera_Bio"><strong>Tera Williams, </strong></a>who may be <strong>Mayor Richard Daley's</strong> <a href="http://www.myfoxchicago.com/dpp/news/metro/mayor-daley-tera-williams-video#transcript">least favorite</a> general assignment reporter at WFLD-Channel 32, and <a href="/feder/2009/11/ex-fox-anchor-fighting-back-after-firing/8157"><strong>Mike Barz,</strong></a> former anchor of the Fox-owned station's &quot;Good Day Chicago.&quot; Williams posted a note on <a href="http://www.travelersjoy.com/members/teraandmike/">TravelersJoy.com</a> that they're hoping to &quot;go sailing in the British Virgin Islands for one week&quot; on their honeymoon.</li> <li>One editor and one reporter will be hired by Chicago Public Radio WBEZ-FM (91.5) as part of an Upper Midwest Local Journalism Center funded by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, according to <a href="http://cpb.org/pressroom/release.php?prn=814">an announcement</a> Thursday. The center, one of seven across the country, will operate in partnership with Michigan Radio and Cleveland's Ideastream.</li> <li><strong>George Castle</strong> kicks off the 17th&sbquo;&nbsp;season of his &quot;Diamond Gems&quot; baseball talk show this weekend with the addition of on an online outlet at the Times of Northwest Indiana's <a href="http://nwitimes.com/">NWI.com.</a> It continues to air on WLBK-AM (1360) in DeKalb at 1 p.m. Saturdays, WIMS-AM (1420) in Michigan City at 6 p.m. Saturdays, WJOL-AM (1340) in Joliet at 4 p.m. Sundays, and on <a href="http://SLRNRadioSports.com/">SLRNRadioSports.com</a> at 11 a.m. Fridays. Castle's 11th baseball book, <em>When The Game Changed: An Oral History of Baseball's True Golden Age 1969-79,</em> will be published in September by Lyons Press.</li> <li><strong>Ruth L Ratny,</strong> publisher of <a href="http://reelchicago.com/">ReelChicago.com,</a> will receive the Chicago Legend Award April 15 at the Chicago International Film Festival's Hugo Television Awards. Ratny has been an outspoken supporter of Chicago's film and television production industry for decades.&sbquo;&nbsp;<strong>Dean Richards,</strong> entertainment reporter and critic for Channel 9, will host the event at the Hard Rock Hotel Chicago.</li> </ul></p> Fri, 26 Mar 2010 00:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blog/robert-feder/its-criminal-wgn-expands-sports-central-oblivion