CHICAGO GAMBLE: CASINO AT THOMPSON CENTER? Two key leaders of the city's labor and business organizations are proposing turning the James R. Thompson Center into a casino and hotel complex. The mayor's communications director tells the Sun-Times it's too early to talk about location for a casino, but she says the city and the state are losing money by delaying a decision to bring casino gambling to Chicago.
- Crain's Chicago Business: RTA threatens to cut off CTA, Metra funding.
WHEN YOU WANT TO SHOW YOUR GUN YOU REALLY CARE. Gun-rights activists inspired by last year's Chick-fil-A Appreciation Day have declared Jan. 19 "Gun Appreciation Day." NPR's Mark Memmott notes that date falls not coincidentally just before Barack Obama's second inauguration.
- Obama inauguration tickets mistakenly put on sale early.
TO COIN A RAISE. Could President Obama use a technicality -- the power to mint platinum coins in any denomination, including a trillion dollars -- to dodge the debt ceiling if Congress doesn't act by this summer? Stephen Colbert says Americans should have seen it coming in Obama's original campaign slogan: "Change."
- Gawker: Could platinum coin drive plot of Ocean's 14?
- Wired: "If You Thought Obama’s Drone Godfather Was Powerful, Wait ‘Til He’s at the CIA."
CROWDED HOUSE RACE. In the election to replace Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr. as the 2nd Congressional District's voice in Congress, 22 people have filed as candidates: 17 Democrats and 5 Republicans.
- Eric Zorn: Letter to state lawmakers advances "absolute stupidest argument against gay marriage."
- Politico lays off staffers in post-election restructuring.
- On WBEZ's Afternoon Shift, Rick Kogan spotlights Chicago's City Newsstand -- the Midwest's largest magazine store.
- During Consumer Electronics Show, AP running sponsored Tweets -- from Samsung -- on its primary Twitter account.
- The Atlantic: 181,354 People on Twitter Think They're Experts at Twitter.
- The Onion: 4 Copy Editors Killed In Ongoing AP Style, Chicago Manual Gang Violence.
NETFLIX ADDS. "Revolution" and "Fringe" are among the shows to be available on-demand in a new deal with Warner Bros.
- McDonald's testing "Mighty Wings" in Chicago.
Clarifying an item in this blog and on yesterday's edition of Morning Shift: A source within the Chicago Tribune (where this blogger worked for 11 years) confirms that yesterday's wraparound ad for "Book of Mormon" wasn't a first for the paper.
Soundtrack for preparation of this edition: Crowded House, "Don't Dream It's Over."