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To the editors:

Your Michael Miner (“Mad About Mariotti”) should wake up and stop kissing that phoney baloney Royko’s ass [Hot Type, June 25]. Talk about journalistic thievery. In the November 9, 1992, number of the New Yorker, in the “Department of Modest Proposals,” writer Jonathan Rubenstein suggested that the government ship all American prisoners to the emptied gulags in Russia along with small per capita fees to pay for their meals. This would aid the Russian economy and lower our own Bureau of Prisons budget. Within days of the appearance of his article your sainted Royko offered Rubenstein’s idea hook, line, and sinker in his daily Tribune column. Some of you must have noticed all this, too. What’s with your local heroes; do such tired old farts like this one really intimidate you into silence?

Jonathan Lamal

N. LaSallle

Michael Miner replies:

I’m speechless.