SP Intel Report- October 26, 2015

Welcome to the inaugural post of the “SP Intel Report.” On October 15 I blogged big changes were coming to Survival And Prosperity starting October 19. I wrote:

Each day will begin with an “SP Intel Report” (if it’s warranted), where I’ll be focusing on current events locally (Chicagoland area), nationwide, and overseas which I think readers should be aware of…

As luck would have it, my computer crashed October 19, delaying the implementation of these changes.

One week later, I’ve managed to repair my laptop, and I’m back in the saddle again.

So off we go then…


“If City Hall ‘loses’ downtown to the bad guys… you lose the tourists, their money, revenue… you get the point.”

Survival And Prosperity, May 4, 2011

The Chicago news media is reporting that two tourists from Minneapolis were robbed at knifepoint by three men near Oak Street Beach late Saturday evening. The male victim was stabbed during the holdup while trying to protect his girlfriend. Two of Chicago’s more upstanding residents have been charged with the crime (police are still looking for a third individual).

The last time I blogged about a tourist getting knifed downtown was back during the 2012 holiday season. Even though it’s been a while, I fear we’ll be hearing of similar incidents with increased regularity as the city’s financial health deteriorates and the Chicago Police Department keeps receiving lip service but not bodies (meaning manpower).

There will probably be plenty of the other based on recent trends.

Note to self. Study up on defense against knives.


Speaking of deteriorating financial health, the State of Illinois was hammered by two of the major credit rating agencies in the past week. On October 19, Fitch Ratings announced in a press release:

Fitch Ratings has downgraded the rating on $26.8 billion in outstanding Illinois general obligation (GO) bonds to ‘BBB+’ from ‘A-‘.

In addition, the ratings on bonds related to the state based on its appropriation have been downgraded to ‘BBB’ from ‘BBB+’…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Three days later, Moody’s Investors Service stated in a release:

Moody’s Investors Service has downgraded the State of Illinois’ $26.8 billion of general obligation bonds to Baa1 from A3, while also lowering ratings on the state’s sales-tax (Build Illinois) bonds to Baa1 from A3, and on the state’s subject to appropriation bonds (issued by the Metropolitan Pier and Exposition Authority and for the state’s Civic Center program) to Baa2 from Baa1. The outlook for all of these obligations remains negative…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Keep in mind the following observations by Karen Pierog over on the Reuters website on October 22:

Both general obligation bond ratings are now just three steps above the “junk” level… The downgrade by Moody’s marked the 17th by major credit rating agencies for Illinois since 2003… Even before this week’s downgrades, Illinois had the lowest credit ratings among the 50 U.S. states. Ratings histories from the three major credit rating agencies indicate few states have ever had their GO ratings fall below the A level…

Faced with a $105 billion unfunded public pension liability and a bill backlog of around $7 billion, I suspect Illinoisans will be on the hook for some sort of tax hike(s) in the near future.


Any Survival And Prosperity readers skeptical about the future existence of the Internet? Personally, I won’t be surprised if it goes kaput one day. Don’t get me wrong, I’m somewhat of a techie (driven by needs, not wants) and love the Internet. But I’m not sold on its staying power due to frailties with its infrastructure. A couple of years ago I remember reading about an elderly Georgian woman accidently cutting off neighboring Armenia’s access to the World Wide Web for up to five hours- using only a spade. And now there’s this from The New York Times website this past Sunday. David E. Sanger and Eric Schmitt reported:

Russian submarines and spy ships are aggressively operating near the vital undersea cables that carry almost all global Internet communications, raising concerns among some American military and intelligence officials that the Russians might be planning to attack those lines in times of tension or conflict.

The issue goes beyond old worries during the Cold War that the Russians would tap into the cables — a task American intelligence agencies also mastered decades ago. The alarm today is deeper: The ultimate Russian hack on the United States could involve severing the fiber-optic cables at some of their hardest-to-access locations to halt the instant communications on which the West’s governments, economies and citizens have grown dependent

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

So the Russians could switch off the Internet. Or a rogue Uncle Sam could do it and blame the Russkies.

I told my girlfriend her brilliant nephew should get into the BBS game. Wave of the future?

“Apple II on a BBS in 2014!”
YouTube Video

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Sobol, Rosemary Regina. “$500K, $950K bails set for 2 accused of robbery, stabbing near Oak Street Beach.” Chicago Tribune. 26 Oct. 2015. ( 26 Oct. 2015.

Pierog, Karen. “UPDATE 2-Illinois bond rating cut again over budget impasse.” Reuters. 22 Oct. 2015. ( 26 Oct. 2015.

Sanger, David E. and Schmitt, Eric. “Russian Ships Near Data Cables Are Too Close for U.S. Comfort.” The New York Times. 25 Oct. 2015. ( 26 Oct. 2015.

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President Obama Gets Owned By Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly Over Politicizing Oregon Mass Shooting

I didn’t hear about the mass shooting at Umpqua Community College in Oregon until arriving home from Wisconsin late Thursday night. Incredible tragedy- my thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and their families. As expected, the incident is being exploited to no end by gun “control” supporters. Yet, one of the more well-known mouthpieces of the anti-Bill of Rights crowd got owned on national television the other night by Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly. From The O’Reilly Factor October 1:

I don’t have a script here. I’m just talking to President Obama right now. Okay. It’s just me, to him. You say that the states that have the most gun laws have the least gun violence. Your home state of Illinois has perhaps the most stringent gun laws in the country. Chicago is the largest city in Illinois. Since 2012, there have been 6,000 shootings- 6,000 shootings- in the city of Chicago. There have been 1,679 murders in the city of Chicago, many of them exactly where you worked as a community organizer. So you know the problem that Chicago has. And you also know, Mr. President, that Chicago has extremely stringent gun laws. In fact, Chicago was confiscating guns against the Second Amendment until the courts stopped that. So, most of the people in Chicago say, “If we have all of these stringent gun control laws in our city and our state, why do we have a holocaust? Why?” The reason is that criminals who need guns to do their business are going to get the guns, because there aren’t stringent penalties if you violate gun laws in Chicago or Illinois. The laws are on the books- they’re not enforced. And you, Mr. President, have not made an issue of it at all. In fact, you don’t even mention the carnage in Chicago. You do mention the individual things like what happened in Oregon. But Chicago is like, doesn’t exist, even though this is your turf, your hometown, you’re the guy who was there. So I don’t understand any of that. I don’t get any of it…

“Bill O’Reilly Message To President Obama: I Have A Right To Protect Myself”
YouTube Video

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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Another Violent Chicago Weekend: 4 Dead, 53 Wounded By Gunfire

Just read on the Chicago Tribune website a short while ago that 57 people were shot (4 fatally) from last Friday night through early this morning.

Alexandra Chachkevitch and Jeremy Gorner reported this marked “the second consecutive weekend in the city in which shooting victims topped 50,” where 53 people were shot (8 dead, 45 wounded) last weekend.

Chicagoans know that this type of violence typically occurs in certain parts of the city.

However, the amount of shootings going on these days- Chachkevitch and Gorner added “more than 40 were shot on four consecutive weekends in August”- is somewhat mind-blowing.

And while the arrival of more seasonal weather may result in a drop in these numbers soon, not only do I feel this level of violence is going to be a recurring issue for the city, but I think it will escalate and spread as the fallout of Chicago’s financial ills converges with the next major economic crisis that will soon grip the nation.

If this scenario does in fact arrive in the “Windy City,” a focus on self-defense and security (among other things) will be required by residents to come out the other side of this storm in one piece.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Gorner, Jeremy and Chachkevitch, Alexandra. “Ten-year-old girl among 57 shot over bloody weekend in Chicago.” Chicago Tribune. 28 Sep. 2015. ( 28 Sep. 2015.

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Monday, September 28th, 2015 Crime, Debt Crisis, Public Safety, Security, Self-Defense No Comments

Chicago’s Violent Weekend: 8 Dead, 45 Wounded

A headline on the Chicago Tribune website this afternoon said all that needs to be known about how bad the shootings were around Chicago this past weekend:

“2nd worst weekend of 2015 for Chicago gun violence: 8 dead, 45 wounded”

According to the accompanying article, the worst weekend (to date) was from July 3 to 6, with 7 dead, 50 wounded.

Labor Day weekend saw 7 dead, 46 wounded, in the city.

There’s a pretty good chance Chicagoans will see the following by the end of the calendar year:

• 2015 will be a “banner year” for shootings in Chicago
• Most of the incidents won’t stem from law-abiding gun owners
• “Assault weapons” won’t be used in the majority of cases either
• Despite all the above, the politicians and their ilk will call for yet more gun “control” that does nothing to curb the violence or stop criminals from perpetrating such crimes, yet punishes firearm owners who follow the law

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


“2nd worst weekend of 2015 for Chicago gun violence: 8 dead, 45 wounded.” Chicago Tribune. 21 Sep. 2015. ( 21 Sep. 2015.

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Monday, September 21st, 2015 Crime, Firearms, Government, Gun Rights, Legal, Self-Defense No Comments

Illinois Police Officer Shot And Killed, Manhunt Continues

Northeastern Illinois readers of this blog- be advised that three male suspects (2 white, 1 black) are still being sought Tuesday evening after a Fox Lake police lieutenant was shot and killed earlier in the day. Ruth Fuller and Becky Schlikerman reported on the Chicago Sun-Times website:

A community mourned Tuesday while a massive manhunt continued into the evening in far north suburban Fox Lake for three suspects in the fatal shooting of Lt. Charles Joseph Gliniewicz, 52.

He was gunned down about 8 a.m. Tuesday after telling dispatch that he was pursuing three suspects. His service weapon was taken…

Frank S. Abderholden, Dan Hinkel, and Dan Moran added on the Chicago Tribune website tonight:

His colleagues responded and found him shot in a marshy area near U.S. Highway 12, a main road through town, authorities said. His gun was found near him, said Lake County Undersheriff Raymond Rose. Gliniewicz died at the scene, Rose said.

The offenders should be treated as armed and dangerous, Rose said. He said police were working with “limited descriptions” of the suspects…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Too bad better descriptions of the suspects aren’t available.

From what I gathered watching the local TV news tonight, the focus of the ongoing search is that “marshy area.”

Here’s hoping Fox Lake-area residents have good security measures in place around their homes.

And something tells me a number of firearm owners will be sleeping better tonight than certain other neighbors.

Stay safe…

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Fuller, Beth and Schlikerman, Becky. “Massive manhunt continues after Fox Lake officer slain.” Chicago Sun-Times. 1 Sep. 2015. ( 1 Sep. 2015

Abderholden, Frank S., Hinkel, Dan and Moran, Dan. “Slain Fox Lake police officer identified as veteran cop, father of four.” Chicago Tribune. 1 Sep. 2015. ( 1 Sep. 2015.

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Tuesday, September 1st, 2015 Crime, Firearms, Public Safety, Self-Defense No Comments

Quote For The Week

“I am too pissed off tonight to be diplomatic about what’s going on and I’m not going to stick my head in the sand about it. I said last December that war had been declared on the American police officer led by some high profile people- one of them coming out of the White House, one coming out of the United States Department of Justice. And it’s open season right now. There’s no doubt about it…

And I’m tired of hearing people calling these black “activists.” They’re not activists. This is black slime and it needs to be eradicated from the American society and American culture…

I need every law-abiding person in the United States of America to stand up and start pushing back against this slime, this filth, that’s disparaging the American law enforcement officer within these communities. When these ugly people come out and start this, and start talking this stuff on social media, to push back against it, and demand- demand- people that belong to these organizations to get out of their town. There’s no room for it. Look, the American police officer is holding these communities together. And we need the support of the people that we defend everyday in order to get that done.”

-Milwaukee County (Wisconsin) Sheriff David Clarke, Jr., reacting to the killing of Harris County (Texas) deputy Darren Goforth on the Fox News TV show Justice with Judge Jeanine last Saturday

YouTube Video

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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64 Shot, 10 Killed In Chicago Over Fourth Of July Weekend

It was another violent Independence Day weekend in the city of Chicago. Peter Nickeas reported on the Chicago Tribune website this morning:

Shootings over the long Fourth of July weekend left 10 people dead and 54 others wounded.

Among those killed was a 7-year-old boy shot in the chest during an attack aimed at his father, according to police…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

The Chicago Sun-Times added this morning on their website:

Police said Sunday the bullet that fatally wounded 7-year-old Amari Brown on the Fourth of July was meant for his father…

The boy’s father, Antonio Brown, is a ranking gang member with 45 previous arrests and was not cooperating with police as of Sunday afternoon as they tried to find his son’s killer, Chicago Police Supt. Garry McCarthy said Sunday, the Chicago Sun-Times reported…

According to a Chicago Crime Commission publication from 2012, there are an estimated 70 to 100 gangs in the Chicago metropolitan area with a membership of between 68,000 to over 150,000.

Nickeas added later on his piece:

Shootings last year, over an 84-hour period, left 82 people shot, 16 fatally…

While some may try to tout this “improvement” from 2014, this year’s carnage is still staggering, particularly as Chicago has strict gun “control” laws on its books.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Nickeas, Peter. “10 killed, 54 wounded in gun violence over Fourth of July weekend in Chicago.” Chicago Tribune. 6 July 2015. ( 6 July 2015.

“Nine dead, 53 injured in Fourth of July weekend shootings.” Chicago Sun-Times. 6 July 2015. ( 6 July 2015.

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Chicago Shootings Reach 1,000 For Year, Faster Than ‘Violent’ 2012

Shootings in Chicago have been making national headlines for some time now.

2012 was particularly bloody in Chicago, when homicides totaled just north of 500 at year-end (87 percent of them firearm-related).

By the beginning of February 2013, the Reverend Jesse Jackson, Sr., and the Chicago-based Rainbow PUSH Coalition were calling for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to patrol the streets of the city.

Now there’s this from the Chicago Tribune website on June 9. Quinn Ford reported:

The number of people shot in the city this year passed 1,000.

Chicago has hit the somber milestone even sooner than the violent year of 2012, when the city saw 500 homicides for the first time since 2008. Shootings that year were up 11 percent. The city reached the 1,000 mark on June 9 in 2012. In 2013 it was on June 26 and last year it was on June 15.

This year, Chicago passed the mark sometime late Thursday into early Friday morning, according to data collected and analyzed by the Chicago Tribune…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

According to on February 15, 2013, Chicago suffered 2,460 shootings in 2012- or one every 3.57 hours that year.

Seeing that the city just surpassed 1,000 shootings faster than even three years ago, 2015 has a good chance of ending up being bloodier than 2012.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Ford, Quinn. “Chicago shootings pass 1,000 mark: ‘I just need to see it’s my child,’ grieving mom cries.” Chicago Tribune. 9 June 2015. ( 11 June 2015.

Gwyn-Williams Jr., Gregory. “Chicago Suffered One Shooting Every 3.6 Hours In 2012.” 15 Feb. 2013. ( 11 June 2015.

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Sunday, June 14th, 2015 Crime, Public Safety, Self-Defense No Comments

49 Shot In Chicago This Past Weekend

Weekend of April 17-19: 4 killed, 30 wounded from shootings in Chicago

Weekend of April 24-26: 4 killed, 22 wounded

Weekend of May 1-3: 5 killed, 29 wounded

Weekend of May 8-10: 2 killed, 24 wounded

Weekend of May 15-17: 2 killed, 47 wounded

That’s correct- 49 shot in the city of Chicago this past weekend.

Peter Nickeas reported on the Chicago Tribune website this afternoon:

At least 49 people were shot, two of them fatally, since Friday afternoon in Chicago. Twenty-two people were shot Friday night into early Saturday and another 18 were shot late Saturday morning into Sunday.

The violent weekend comes on top of a 22 percent increase in shooting incidents so far this year. Through May 10, there were 627 shooting incidents, up from 516 for the same year-earlier period, the [Chicago Police] department said.

Last year saw shooting incidents rise to 2,084, up nearly 12 percent from 1,866 in 2013…

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

All this shooting, and it’s not even summer yet.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (


Nickeas, Peter. “49 people shot in Chicago over weekend: ‘Whole bunch of shots.’” Chicago Tribune. 18 May 2015. ( 18 May 2015.

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Tuesday, May 19th, 2015 Crime, Public Safety, Self-Defense No Comments

Illinois’ Largest Foreign Trading Partners Weigh In On State’s Attractiveness For Investment

Illinois blog readers might be interested in the following, which appeared on the State of Illinois home page earlier this week:

In order to obtain an independent assessment of Illinois’ competitiveness, the Governor’s office asked the state’s largest foreign trading partners to share their confidential views on Illinois’ attractiveness for investment from their countries

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

The survey focused on ten nations, and the findings were posted on the state’s website along with this accompanying memo:

From: John DeBlasio, Director for International Trade and Investment
To: Interested Parties
Date: May 4, 2015
Subj: Key Reforms Needed to Strengthen Foreign Direct Investment in Illinois

In order to obtain an independent assessment of Illinois’ competitiveness, the Governor’s office asked the state’s largest foreign trading partners to share their confidential views on Illinois’ attractiveness for investment from their countries.

Collectively, these nations have invested tens of billions of dollars in factories, warehouses, office buildings, and transportation facilities across America, and employ hundreds of thousands of American workers. They are in a unique position to compare the relative strengths and weaknesses of individual states with which Illinois must compete. Every year they make important decisions on where to locate major new facilities and high-paying jobs. Their comments taken together create a policy roadmap of strategic recommendations that we can use to drive powerful new economic growth and job creation in our state.

Attached are the letters, memos, and priorities the Governor’s Office has received, with names, locations, and specific stories redacted to protect the confidentiality of individual countries. The letters deserve to be reviewed in detail, but some of their key comments are highlighted below:

“Top Concern: tax issues-too high, property & corporate, worries about further increases due to financial condition of the state”
• “There are large (and growing) perceptions that infrastructure improvements are not keeping up”
• “Foreign firms place a premium on opportunities to “cluster” – to work with concentrations of talent in their sector”
• “The plethora of universities, research institutions & accelerators headquartered in the region constitute a significant positive – firms and entrepreneurs are drawn here by the world-class innovation taking place”
• “Chicago is attractive to college students – which therefore enhances the quality of the workforce pool”
• “Vast difference in perception between Chicago and downstate Illinois. While the former has plenty of positives, the latter is not seen to be competitive with Indiana, Wisconsin, etc.”
• “Costs in particular linked to Unions are high. It’s a problem, especially with Wisconsin and Indiana as neighbors – if there is a legal dispute with workers….Cook County is known for being anti-boss or pro-employee”
• “Right to Work is being used by other states to position them favorably compared to Illinois. This is similar to other labor market regulations and workers compensation, unemployment insurance levels, etc. that put Illinois at a disadvantage compared with other states”
• “The manufacturing workforce is aging and vocational training for the next generation of skilled employees is lacking”
• “Chicago is one of the most expensive trade show locations in the world. Being an expensive/bureaucratic trade show location often carries over to the state being perceived as a high cost/bureaucratic location for investing”
• “Illinois overseas offices are primarily focused on exports not investment attraction, which is two very different tasks”
• “Many states have modernized their structure by founding Economic Development Corporations tasked specifically with pursuing investors”

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

Sifting through the trading partners’ letters and memos which contained remarks on foreign investment in Illinois, this one from so-called “Nation #3” stood out:

Even (redacted) companies have a high degree of ignorance about Chicago and the region and rarely see beyond Capone and Jordan

High crime rates- hugely amplified internationally. Chicago is seen as the crime capital of the USA

(Editor’s note: Bold added for emphasis)

“Crime capital of the USA” I get. Jordan too. But Capone? Really?

“F**k that, I’m going to Vegas!”
Scene From Chicago Overcoat (2009)
(Warning: Language, violence, “Chicago Typewriter” in all its glory)
YouTube Video

You can read more on that survey from Governor Rauner’s office here (.pdf format) on the State of Illinois website.

Christopher E. Hill
Survival And Prosperity (

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