If it’s broke — and by most calculations, Chicago is — the Olympics won’t fix it. Rest assured of that one unassailable fact.
You will be told that if the 2016 Summer Games are awarded to the city, track will pay for itself, and field will turn a profit. You will be told that thousands of visitors will pour millions of dollars into Chicago’s empty till.
You will be told that, after everybody leaves, we will be left with fabulous new infrastructure leading to shiny new facilities. You will be told that, once the trash is collected, Chicago will become a world-class metropolis, a destination point.
You will be told all the above, and some of it might be true. But by hook or by crooks, you will be charged for the quadrennial made-for-TV boondoggle. Much synchronized spinning is taking place by way of brainwashing citizens to believe the 2016 Olympics will put Chicago in a dress shirt and on the map. The City That Works shall never be the same.
Unfortunately, that also borders on reality because things could get worse. The Olympics are not free, and if you believe two weeks of lakefront calisthenics will solve Chicago’s fiscally exhausted transit system or public schools or demoralized police, you have not been paying attention….
Our city’s Olympic cheerleaders promise that if the 2016 Summer Games are staged here, you will be thrilled. Here’s another guarantee. You will be billed.
The headline for this column for the print edition tells it all – “Olympic promises as phony as $3 bill.”
Chicago’s sports columnists, editorial writers and beat reporters are joining the No Games chorus – “They will play and we all will pay.” We’ve been warning Chicago of this sad truth since our first event on January 31. IF YOU’RE READING THIS NOW – PLEASE TAKE A MOMENT TO SIGN UP FOR OUR EMAIL NEWSLETTER, SIGN OUR ONLINE PETITION AND CONSIDER MAKING A DONATION VIA PAYPAL. WE’RE SAVING UP TO VISIT SWEDEN IN OCTOBER…