Thursday, December 11, 2008

"You need a little corruption to make government work"

Well, that's at least is what we're told. But, here's another example of how the state's seamy reputation costs us: State delays $1.4B debt offering | Crain's

Thanks, Rich Daley

Forbes magazine names Bensenville as America's fastest dying town. Bensenville says it's not dead yet, but blame Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley's plans to expanded his pot-of-gold, O'Hare Airport, for threatening the town's existence.

Read it in the Daily Herald

More on O'Hare noise protests

New runway brings complaints :: News :: PIONEER PRESS :: Norridge and Harwood Heights News

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

John Harris enters spotlights, reluctantly

Those O'Hare expansion guys sure turn up in the most unsurprising places. Like at the defendant's table in a federal courtroom. Read about John Harris' rise from an instrument of Mayor Richard M. Daley's O'Hare expansion plan into Gov. Rod Blagojevich's inner circle.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Virgin America Welcomed to Boston, Chased Out of Chicago - SmarterTravel.com

Here's another view on Virgin getting booted out of Chicago:

"Almost all gates are currently leased through 2018 by major airlines including American, United, and Delta, which, despite having collectively reduced their capacity at O'Hare by 23 percent since 2000, refused to give up any gates to Virgin America. So effectively, those major airlines have told O'Hare flyers to take their high prices and eat them."

Virgin America to start hub service

But not at O'Hare Airport.

Only a couple of days after Virgin withdrew its unsuccessful effort to land at O'Hare,, the airline announced that it would launch service from Boston to San Francisco and Los Angeles. Too bad Chicago.

Virgin pulled out of Chicago because it was unable to negotiate access to O'Hare gates. And why is that, especially now with so many unused gates there?

Because United and American, which control 80 percent of the traffic there and most of the gates, didn't want the competition. Nothing against Virgin, they just don't want anyone else showing up, offering lower fares, better service or connections to unserved markets.

Wait a minute: Isn't the airport publicly owned? Don't taxpayers pay for it? Shouldn't the city of Chicago, the landlord, recognize that the airport needs more competition?

The answers are yes, yes and yes. But the cozy relatiionship between the two airlines and City Hall prevents any significant competition at O'Hare. We don't need no stinkin' competition.

So, screw the airline passengers. And screw the taxpayers.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Residents near O'Hare protest noise

They say the city lied to them. The new north runway was supposed to be used only by small regional jets, they said.

Chicago to Virgin Airlines: We don't need your stinking business

Virgin abandons O'Hare plans | Crain's

For an earlier story about how Chicago and its friends at United and American have blocked economic growth, go here.

Justice for Park Ridge and Des Plaines?

Several years ago, Park Ridge and Des Plaines withdrew their opposition to the expansion of O'Hare Airport. In Des Plaines, voters elected a pro-expansion mayor after years of opposition, thanks to some heavy footwork done by the Democratic patronage army in the east part of town. Before that, the Des Plaines mayor withdrew his town's membership in the Suburban O'Hare Commission, a consortium of communities opposing O'Hare expansion.

Having sold out, the towns now are full of angry residents complaining about the increased noise that the new northern runway at O'Hare has brought to their communities. According to the Chicago Tribune, no one expected the runway to carry as much traffic as it does, so now Des Plaines and Park Ridge are suffering from the consequences of their folly by lower-flying planes and increased numbers of flights. Apparently, they believed Chicago when it assured everyone, especially in those communities, that the northern runway would not have that much impact on their quality of life.

Perhaps Des Plaines and Park Ridge will have second thoughts and rejoin the opposition.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Appeals court hears O'Hare expansion foes' case

(AP) — Appellate judges have heard arguments from a Chicago suburb hoping to stop the demolition of more than 500 homes in the path of a planned runway at O'Hare International Airport.

Story is here.

Monday, December 1, 2008