Chicago Blackhawks owner Rocky Wirtz vented his frustration about outgoing mayor Rahm Emanuel in a letter to incoming mayor Lori Lightfoot earlier this week. Today, Emanuel responded:
When you own something, you pay the costs and you reap the benefits. Welcome to capitalism and the private sector, Rocky.
Look, I get it. For those who have become accustomed to the rules of the road of crony capitalism, and have had sweetheart deals and special arrangements no one else receives, it is tough when you are forced to play by the same rules as everyone else. While I am certainly not against using public investments in infrastructure as a catalyst for economic growth, I believe we must draw the line at outright corporate welfare.
It is because we have invested in our economic fundamentals, not because of crony capitalism, that Chicago has led the country in corporate relocations and foreign direct investment every year for the last six years, a first for the City of Chicago.
It's also why we're happy to have failed to win the 2024 Olympics and Amazon's HQ2—because winning those things would have cost more than they were worth.