* Instead of clutching their pearls and screaming about Madigan like the Tribune did, the Sun-Times has a much more reasonable, witty and responsible response to the Foxconn deal…
EDITORIAL: Thank you, Wisconsin, for the beautiful gift
Friends in the Wisconsin Legislature, we beg you: Sign that bad deal with Foxconn.
It’s the neighborly thing to do.
Best we can tell, it’s a crap shoot as to whether luring the giant electronics company to Wisconsin would work out well for you, given the billions of dollars in tax breaks your governor has promised, but it would be terrific for Illinois. It would cost our state nothing, yet up to half of the new jobs could go to our residents, while O’Hare Airport would get the new international travel business.
The best thing that ever happened to Illinois might be losing Foxconn to you, Wisconsin. Much appreciated.
Truth be told, this whole sad spectacle of Midwestern states fighting each other for economic development, each trying to outdo the other in prostrating itself before some international conglomerate, is foolish, and the Foxconn deal is proof. If Illinois and Wisconsin had joined forces from the beginning to bring this manufacturing plant to the region — maybe even pulling in Indiana as a partner — the final deal with the Taiwan company might have been less of a give-away, and the risks would have been shared.
To be a player in the global economy, size matters. Working together, the Midwest is better positioned to leverage its strengths, including a highly trained work force, superb universities and a central location. But because Illinois, Wisconsin and the rest of the old Rust Belt states fail to do so, big companies like Foxconn play them off each other. The result is the kind of questionable deal Gov. Scott Walker has cut for Wisconsin.
The Sun-Times is right on all points. And our governor should’ve led the charge for a regional deal. It’s high time that Great Lakes states stop fighting each other and start working together.