I’ll bet this unique and original sculpture sells bigtime with those folks at airports who confiscate tweezers and 3-inch toy rifles:
(Yes, I’m trying to get some hits with that title.)
The Sun-Times articles I mentioned below include a story about some apparent Russian mob types who brought several Latvian women to Chicago with promises of big money for go-go dancing and then forced them to work in all-nude strip clubs and took all their money. The situation apparently came apart when the women began to realize that their captors did not control the police here the way they did in Latvia. The women were all freed and U.S. attorney Terry Kinney put the leader in jail with an extremely rare conviction for the crime of slavery.
While playing “sex slave” may make your marriage more exciting (so I’ve heard), in real life it’s just pathetic and sad. Yes, organized crime really does hurt innocent people.
Looking back, this story is strange for two reasons. First, although the article calls them “sex slaves,” there’s no indication here or in other articles I found that the women were forced to have sex with anyone. It seems unlikely to me that a newspaper would be squeamish about reporting rape or forced prostitution if that’s what happened. Second, there’s no clear connection between this story and the Chicago mob. The perpetrators here were Russians. I guess the Sun-Times just wanted to add a little sex to the story series.
The Sunday Chicago Sun-Times has an article about the decline of the Chicago mob. No story about the mob would be complete without mentioning Al Capone, and this is no exception. (As a Chicagoan, I’m still amazed by Capone’s lasting fame. Visiting college students from Egypt, India, and China all knew they were coming to study in Al Capone’s town.) The gist of the story is that the mob is a lot smaller than it was during the Capone years. In real dollars, Capone’s mob did about 10 times as much business.
The article also mentions the most recent scandal in the suburb of Cicero. An allegedly mob-connected insurance company allegedly ripped the town off for $12 million with the alleged help of Town President Betty Loren-Maltese. (All those “allegedly”s are in there because the jury is still deliberating as I write this.) The article doesn’t have room to mention previous Cicero scandals, such as Loren-Maltese’s husband and predecessor as Town President, who went to jail on other mob-related charges. Nor is there room to mention the police scandals that so depleted the Cicero police force’s manpower that the state police had to take over law enforcement for a while. They don’t mention all the strip clubs and brothels that flourished there before being cleaned up in the 90’s. They don’t even have room to mention that Cicero has been like this since Al Capone first took over the town.
As an indication of how slow business has been for the Chicago mob, consider that the last suspected mob hit was way back in 1999, when Ronald Jarrett was killed outside his home in the Bridgeport neighborhood. There was also the Anthony Chiaramonti hit in 2001, but technically that was outside the city limits, so it probably shouldn’t count…
Jonah Goldberg Defends Bill Clinton? No, not quite, but Jonah writes in defense of hypocrisy by society’s leaders, advancing the proposition that leaders should lie to hide their unseemly side, lest the masses mistake it for virtue and try to emulate it.
I wonder if he felt that way about Bill Clinton. By this theory, weren’t Clinton’s enemies revealing information that was best kept quiet?
Actually, this is not a bad idea. Every time the cops bust some professional athlete for drug possession, they say it was necessary because he was supposed to be a role model for the kids. They’ve got this exactly backwards. The athlete was being a role model by carefully hiding his vices from the fans. It was the cops who told everyone about the really great athlete who’s been doing all these drugs.
Just flipped the Public bit on the Blogger settings page. Five hits so far, all from me. It’s a start.