Friday, June 26, 2009



The Chicago Sun-Times reports in today’s (i.e., 6/26/09’s) edition that

The City Council is mapping plans to hire an independent analyst to comb through the $1 billion in private insurance policies being lined up by Chicago 2016 (the Mayor’s blue ribbon Olympic cheerleading squad composed largely of those who will clean up financially should Chicago have to endure the misfortune of hosting the Olympics) to shield taxpayers from any risk beyond the $500mm the Council has pledged.”

The paper goes on to report that

Aldermen also plan to hire their own experts to verify Chicago 2016’s construction budget and the Olympic committee’s representation of surpluses generated by past Olympics to make certain ‘they’re not cooking the books,’ (Alderman Joe) Moore said.”

Leave aside for a moment the utter hilarity of the Council’s considering its steps to “insure” that “only” $500mm of taxpayer money be spent on the Olympics when the city is broke to be a mark of fiscal vigilance, and consider possible ulterior, as opposed to just idiotic, motives:

If you were the Mayor and a bunch of hangers-on and toadies who stand to get even richer if the Olympics come to our city, how would you get around the resistance of the less starry-eyed of our citizens who demand more than hype and hoopla and insist on such spoilsport, mundane items as hard numbers and signs that someone around here recognizes the very real and large downside of this modern version of the bread and circuses various entrenched leaders have used throughout history to mollify a besotted and increasingly clueless populace? Here’s an idea:

Get a bunch of lapdog alderman (Joe Moore does not fit this description, but Joe Moore is utterly incapable of getting anything through a City Council dominated by yes-men and stooges without the endorsement of the Mayor.) to demand a review of Olympic insurance and costs by “independent” experts. Make sure these “experts” don’t take this “independence” thing too far. Have these learned experts produce a report certifying the fiscal rectitude of this latest and most expensive of the Mayor’s boondoggles. Watch yet another barrier to the Olympics fall in the face of this latest smokescreen, greasing the way for yet another scheme to make certain favored people rich at the expense of the people who really make Chicago work.

It’s brilliant!

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