An example of why government shouldn't subsidize or regulate the media
The Chicago Tribune was first to report the arrests. The Tribune was named in the affidavit because tapes allegedly recorded Blagojevich directing Harris to inform the newspaper's owners and advisers that "state financial assistance would be withheld unless members of the Chicago Tribune's editorial board were fired, primarily because Blagojevich viewed them as driving discussion of his possible impeachment." . . .
Possibly this is a good reason to keep government out of things generally.
UPDATE: There is a lot more detail provided here:
According to the affidavit, intercepted phone calls revealed that the Tribune Company, which owns the Chicago Tribune and the Chicago Cubs, has explored the possibility of obtaining assistance from the Illinois Finance Authority relating to the Tribune Company’s efforts to sell the Cubs and the financing or sale of Wrigley Field.
In a Nov. 6 phone call, Harris explained to Blagojevich that the deal the Tribune Company was trying to get through the IFA was basically a tax mitigation scheme in which the IFA would own title to Wrigley Field and the Tribune would not have to pay capital gains tax, which Harris estimated would save the company approximately $100 million.
Intercepted calls allegedly show that Blagojevich directed Harris to inform the Tribune and an associate, identified as Tribune Financial Advisor, that state financial assistance would be withheld unless members of the Chicago Tribune’s editorial board were fired, primarily because Blagojevich viewed them as driving discussion of his possible impeachment.
In a Nov. 4 phone call, Blagojevich allegedly told Harris that he should say to Tribune Financial Advisor, the Cubs chairman and the Tribune owner, “our recommendation is fire all those [expletive] people, get ‘em the [expletive] out of there and get us some editorial support.”
On Nov. 6, the day of a Tribune editorial critical of Blagojevich , Harris told Blagojevich that he told Tribune Financial Advisor the previous day that things “look like they could move ahead fine but, you know, there is a risk that all of this is going to get derailed by your own editorial page.”
Harris also told Blagojevich that he was meeting with Tribune Financial Advisor on Nov. 10.
In a Nov. 11 intercepted call, Harris allegedly told Blagojevich that Tribune Financial Advisor talked to Tribune Owner and Tribune Owner “got the message and is very sensitive to the issue.”
Harris told Blagojevich that according to Tribune Financial Advisor, there would be “certain corporate reorganizations and budget cuts coming and, reading between the lines, he’s going after that section.”
Blagojevich allegedly responded: “Oh. That’s fantastic.” . . .