Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Mayor Daley Sells Out Midway Airport

Chicago’s Midway Airport to be Privatized

Chicago, IL – Going once, going twice…Midway Airport sold to the highest bidder!

Mayor Richard Daley has announced the city has accepted a bid to hand over Midway Airport to a “private operator” in a deal that he claims would bring in $1 billion for city coffers.

In case you’re wondering who the suitor is, a brief mention is made about the foreign group that goes by the name of Midway Investment and Development Co. (MIDCo), a shadowy bunch of foreign investors headed up by Citi which agreed to pay $2.5 billion for the right to run Midway for 99 years. Want to make a bet that this posse will NOT be flying in and out of the airport on commercial jets or encounter the TSA?

The deal, however, is reportedly not expected to solve Chicago's “current budget problems” as Daley explained:

"We believe this is a very good return, especially given the current stress in the credit markets."

Hmm. The deal won't solve budget problems? N'est pas? And what kind of “problems” are we talking about, here? Let’s see now…apparently, Mayor Daley is taking a page from the Neo-Frat Boy corporate welfare ho playbook by deciding to scrap at least 3,000 jobs and laying off another 1,000 Chicagoans entirely – you know, the new golden rule of privatization dictates that city infrastructures and its people can all take a flying-you-know-what when a few pols and cronies pocket the loot to cover messy investments and bets during these hard times…

“Besides making at least 1,000 layoffs to help balance the city budget, the Daley administration may leave about 3,000 jobs unfilled, a top aide to Mayor Richard Daley said Tuesday.”

Haha, good return indeed, for all those insiders with front row seats at the trough. Now that over 70% of this country’s elites have pulled up the draw bridge on U.S. national wealth and leave the country while their stupid, paid political lackeys ignore US voters and sell out the US infrastructure to the Chinese, Europeans and others in a bargain basement fire sale.” It is no accident that commercial airline deregulation brought about a whole host of disasters like the TSA and shoddy service. Now this. Hellllo Feudal Slave Lord America!

What kind of emphasis will be placed upon safety, efficiency and convenience when a few foreign investors decide to control our fabled Midway?
How are these suitors selected?  Are they "qualified" to change a tire, check the oil level, work a weight & balance sheet or watch the end of the short runway approach as the nosewheel lifts a bit slowly taking off heavy out of Midway while watching the checkerboard rooftop approach while pilot crabbing or anything?  Not to mention, how many other unqualified airline managers have pipe dream visions on how to run airport operations and worse on the cheap in order to crank up profits?

Now that the crisis point has hit with this major global recession taking over, it is sad that this wholesale looting by a few greedy pols and corporate elites is happening before our eyes, in our cities, in America. At our little jewel of an airport inside of my hometown.



prezdumas said...

Let's see 2.5 Billion for 99 years is
24 million dollars a year. That's not enough! The land along under the airport would lease for more than that! Plus, with inflation, toward the end of the lease, they'll be paying just a few million in today's dollars!

2Truthy said...

You can't tell me that 99 years is not a SALE...

What makes anyone believe that any the loot will go to infrastructure (except by *the books*? Plus, Daley's got a huge political machine to feed first. Like the 11th Floating Casino License tied up by Blago (which Hiz Honah thinks is righfully that of the "People's Park," e.g, Meigs).

Ok, so it MAY go for infrastructure -- but the money now allocated for infrastructure will go elsewhere! Unless, of course, you consider the development and investment friends of Meigs park & Amphitheater to be "infrastructure."

Anonymous said...

Maybe it's not such a bad idea, that is, if it were managed properly. That's the million dollar question.

2Truthy said...

"Investment" is one thing. Overall management and regulation is another.

As is the whole *privatization of public programs* mantra goes- whether it be airports, education, highways, health care-- investments from the private sector attach strings for control at the expense of expertise, much need safety regulation/oversight and overall common good.

In an ideal world, people from the private sector would view investments (here or abroad) in public programs as opportunities to ENRICH both the people with expertise in their fields who run them alongside themselves. In an ideal world, such private investors would be hubris and greed and arrogance free griftless and graftless respectable people who knew how to respect others.
Such would be the ultimate win/win public-private "partnership" scenario that would regulate the private sector cater to the expertise of those working public sector professionals in their chosen fields, not the other way around.
Fat chance, skinny.