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"In a little over 15 years, the Chicago school system has gone from 'districts,' to 'service centers,' to 'regions,' to 'Area Instructional Offices,'" notes an emphatically unimpressed writer in Substance (September). "The new plan seems to have the six high school areas running from the east to west. The geographical boundaries of the new elementary areas are difficult to determine from the confusing maps distributed by the school board's Office of Communications at the end of August. But the regions also remain. The new creations are housed in the old regional offices for now, and they will supposedly work within the old regional boundaries as 'regional instructional teams.'"

News you won't hear from liberals. Sam Smith in his on-line newsletter "Undernews": "Clinton's first cabinet is still the recordholder for most millionaires--more than either Bush or Reagan--with 77% consisting of millionaires as opposed to Bush's 71%" (September 21).

"Before setting out for the airport, I looked hard from the other side of State Street at the House of Pain"--aka 3542-44 S. State--"a place for those for whom there is no other place," writes Jamie Kalven in his journal for Slate. "In a matter of days, the building will be closed; overnight it will become an urban ruin. Then soon after that it will be gone. The development of which the building is part [Stateway Gardens] is not seen as a complex, mysterious community but as a failed 'project' to be erased. To my ear, the CHA's name for its demolition and redevelopment program--'The Plan for Transformation'--is Orwellian. Those who failed to provide maintenance and security now offer transformation. The public rhetoric sings of inclusion; the underlying logic is that of a purge."

What the third candidate for governor would do. Charles Wheeler reports in the September Illinois Issues that former suburban Republican state representative Cal Skinner, now running as a Libertarian against Jim Ryan and Rod Blagojevich for governor, would cut all tax increases except on riverboat gambling, lower taxes on cigarettes, eliminate toll roads, allow people to carry concealed weapons, and set term limits for legislative leaders.

(What) Were they thinking? First, administration officials leak to New York Times reporters (September 8) that Iraq has been trying to buy specially designed aluminum tubes for gas centrifuges in which to produce weapons-grade uranium. Second, Vice President Cheney refuses to elaborate on the leak under questioning on Meet the Press, saying that the administration knows of only one attempted purchase. Third, national security adviser Condoleezza Rice tells CNN's Late Edition that the administration knows of a series of such shipments. Linda Rothstein, editor of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, points out in an on-line commentary that such purchases are a long way from making a bomb, as thousands of centrifuges would have to work together in an installation that would use as much energy as a good-sized city. She also asks "if anyone has made an effort to find out anything about the possible supplier or suppliers," since such sales are legally forbidden. "How strange is a story in which one official argues the case of a single shipment while others say there have been a number of shipments, yet no one expresses any interest in

the source?"

Back when they were thinking. "Trying to eliminate Saddam, extending the ground war into an occupation of Iraq...would have incurred incalculable human and political costs. Apprehending him was probably impossible.

We had been unable to find Noriega in Panama, which we knew intimately. We would have been forced to occupy Baghdad and, in effect, rule Iraq. The coalition would instantly have collapsed, the Arabs deserting it in anger and other allies pulling out as well....Going in and occupying Iraq, thus unilaterally exceeding the U.N.'s mandate, would have destroyed the precedent of international response to aggression we hoped to establish." --George H.W. Bush and Brent Scowcroft in Time, March 2, 1998

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