A magnified aerial perspective of Chicago demonstrates the perils of authorizing corruptive government to reign at the citizen’s expense. Archives document that Chicago’s history of ill-repute government dates to the late 1800s. When Mayor Richard Daley leaves city hall, his legacy will be deficient in the advances often associated with a noble leader. Mr. Daley’s achievements include adding street dividers bedecked in floral arrangements; hosting a twilight airport demolition; privatizing public street parking; and, nurturing other narcissistic candidates to prevail.
Even though the people of Chicago would prefer smoothly paved roads, the mayor always seemed focused with beautification. The flower partitions in the center of La Salle and Madison Street coupled with the excessive number of street lights on Randolph and Roosevelt Road are two minor examples of how the Mayor was more concerned with superficiality than assuring Chicagoans of any comforts, including repaved streets or even improving traffic flow around the city.
Despite the fact that the involved parties never approved the midnight destruction of Meig’s Field’s, including the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), Mayor Daley contended that he was trying to protect Chicagoans from a terrorist attack, two years following the 9/11 incident of the World Trade Center. What was more perturbing about the demolition was that it took place at 1:30 AM, and within six-months, Meig’s Field was set to morph into a “temporary” concert venue, already booked with leading rock musician performances.
Aside from Chicago’s aggressive ticketing, towing and vehicle booting history, Mayor Daley seemed to be short on strategies for bolstering Chicago’s financial infrastructure. Privatizing public streets represents one of his most innovative, yet oxymoronic ideas, during his entire 21 years as mayor.
It’s why Chicago’s public streets became a private deal, giving the LAZ company complete discretion to charge exorbitant fees for parking on pothole-riddled roads. And with two parking tickets giving the city the ability to commandeer vehicles, parking in the Windy City was supposed to generate significant revenue, emblematic of an organized racket.
It’s unfortunate that Mr. Daley won’t be able to reflect on how he nurtured the city’s economic vitality or even tried to accommodate taxpayers’ basic urban necessities. Most Chicagoans will remember him for generating revenue via parking violations; holding the highest record for street cameras per capita, maintaining a high homicide rate, the convenience of navigating dented streets, as well as the midnight demolition of an airport.
Now that Mayor Daley is leaving office, Chicago’s future is bleak. After all, who’s going to broker all those privatized deals at the taxpayers’ expense? And while the democrats’ publicists say that Rahm Emanuel, Jesse Jackson, Jr. and Tom Dart top the polls for viable replacements, Chicagoans should learn from our previous mistakes: Don’t vote on propaganda, popularity or name recognition. Expect experience, ethics and unbiased politics to exterminate Chicago’s corruptive history.