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Bloomberg attempts to claim transaction tax corpse is somehow still alive

Monday, Sep 18, 2023 - Posted by Rich Miller

* My newspaper column from this past May

During the campaign, Johnson proposed a 1%-2% “Big Banks Securities and Speculation Tax” that would raise $100 million. So, naturally, there’s worry he will try to use his considerable contacts in the General Assembly and CTU’s clout to persuade Gov. J.B. Pritzker to reverse his position on allowing Chicago to impose a transaction tax and ease the city’s structural deficit.

When he was asked last month about the transaction tax, Pritzker said, “Obviously, what we all want is a thriving financial services economy in the state and the city. I have not stood for a transaction tax, because I think it would be easy for those companies’ servers to move out of the state.” […]

I reached out to the two legislative leaders to see where they stood on allowing home rule units like Chicago impose a tax on electronic transactions.

Spokespersons for both Senate President Don Harmon and House Speaker Chris Welch said their bosses opposed the idea.

This thing is off the table.

The actual quotes

“Harmon is opposed,” said Senate President Don Harmon’s spokesperson John Patterson after checking with his boss, who employed Johnson early in his adult life.

“He is on the same page as the governor and Harmon,” said House Speaker Chris Welch’s spokesperson Jaclyn Driscoll about her employer, a Johnson friend.

So, all three state leaders are opposed and the mayor hasn’t revived the idea. But that didn’t stop a major news media outlet from claiming it is still somehow alive.

* From a new Bloomberg story entitled “Trillion-dollar industry powering Chicago is at risk of leaving”

The letters are stamped all over the hallways of Chicago’s giant skyscrapers and grand office buildings. DRW, IMC, CME, Cboe.

These are some of the derivatives firms that collectively handle trillions of dollars a year in trades, greasing the wheels of global markets with everything from stock options to corn futures. Most of them have called Chicago home for decades — providing thousands of jobs within the city’s $75 billion finance industry.

Now, the firms’ commitment to the Windy City is being tested by some $800 million in taxes proposed by a new mayor staring down a budget gap that’s swelled to half a billion dollars. One idea is a levy on financial transactions, which has alarmed companies already worried about a jump in crime that shows few signs of abating.

Behind the scenes, market makers and exchanges are working together to press their case with policymakers, with firms that typically compete with each other sharing data to help explain their economic benefits to Chicago. While executives haven’t explicitly threatened to leave, in private conversations it’s clear they will consider quitting the city if crime remains an issue and the financial transaction tax passes.

The financial transaction tax is dead. Period. It’s not even being proposed. If they want to blame crime, that’s their right, but they shouldn’t hide behind the non-existent threat of a financial transaction tax.

…Adding… From comments…

It’s not pining. It’s passed on. This proposal is no more. It has ceased to be. It’s expired and gone to meet its maker. It’s a stiff. Bereft of life, it rests in peace. If you hadn’t printed it again in Bloomberg, it’d be pushing up the daisies. Its metabolic processes are now history. It’s off the twig. It’s kicked the bucket, it’s shuffled off its mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the bleedin’ choir invisible. This is an ex proposal.

       

42 Comments
  1. - de Gaulle - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 12:46 pm:

    Jason Lee’s comments in Crains seem to run counter to this post…


  2. - Rich Miller - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 12:48 pm:

    ===Jason Lee’s comments===

    Jason Lee doesn’t run the General Assembly or the governor’s office.


  3. - de Gaulle - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 12:51 pm:

    “It’s not even being proposed.”


  4. - PP - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 12:52 pm:

    ITS DONEZO !


  5. - Rich Miller - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 12:52 pm:

    ===“It’s not even being proposed.” ===

    It’s not. Just somebody in an administration without a comms staff popping off. Again.


  6. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 12:55 pm:

    When one gloms on actual untrue facts by uninformed or unattached leaders, that’s a person not serious to this discussion.

    The goal of the exercise isn’t the worry of the tax but “another” magical reason to take away owning actual decisions that could be unpopular.

    It’s relying on ill-informed people believing the first thing they here on a policy that fits a wanted narrative.


  7. - Rich Miller - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 12:57 pm:

    Mr. Praline: Look, matey, I know a dead parrot when I see one, and I’m looking at one right now.

    Owner: No no he’s not dead, he’s, he’s restin’! Remarkable bird, the Norwegian Blue, idn’it, ay? Beautiful plumage!

    Mr. Praline: The plumage don’t enter into it. It’s stone dead.

    Owner: Nononono, no, no! ‘E’s resting!

    Mr. Praline: All right then, if he’s restin’, I’ll wake him up! (shouting at the cage) ‘Ello, Mister Polly Parrot! I’ve got a lovely fresh cuttle fish for you if you show…

    (owner hits the cage)

    Owner: There, he moved!

    Mr. Praline: No, he didn’t, that was you hitting the cage!

    Owner: I never!!

    Mr. Praline: Yes, you did!

    Owner: I never, never did anything…

    Mr. Praline: (yelling and hitting the cage repeatedly) ‘ELLO POLLY!!!!! Testing! Testing! Testing! Testing! This is your nine o’clock alarm call!

    (Takes parrot out of the cage and thumps its head on the counter. Throws it up in the air and watches it plummet to the floor.)

    Mr. Praline: Now that’s what I call a dead parrot.

    Owner: No, no…..No, ‘e’s stunned!

    Mr. Praline: STUNNED?!?

    Owner: Yeah! You stunned him, just as he was wakin’ up! Norwegian Blues stun easily, major.


  8. - de Gaulle - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 12:59 pm:

    You have a high ranking member of an administration that has been in power for about 120 days again referencing a highly controversial tax. This on the heels of another highly controversial tax.

    Put aside the logistics and likelihood of passage.
    It is worthy of attention.


  9. - Just Me 2 - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 12:59 pm:

    I don’t think it is fair to say that an idea pushed by the Mayor of the City of Chicago (and the CTU) is ever completely “dead.” Maybe not viable for 2023, but things may change after November 5, 2024.


  10. - Rich Miller - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:01 pm:

    ===things may change after November 5, 2024.===

    lol

    This has been talked about for decades because the CTU loves to construct fantasy revenue plans. It has never advanced. It’s just too easy for those firms to move, and then you lose more than just potential transaction tax revenue.


  11. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:03 pm:

    ===It is worthy of attention.===

    60/30 signature is worthy of attention.

    This is barely “It’s not even a bill”

    Good try


  12. - Rich Miller - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:06 pm:

    ===Put aside the logistics and likelihood of passage.===

    lolol

    No.


  13. - Rich Miller - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:10 pm:

    ===$500 million budget deficit without cutting services or raising property taxes===

    That’s only if you believe the deficit is totally real.


  14. - Steve - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:15 pm:

    - (and the CTU) is ever completely “dead.”-

    The CME is an internet business. Even if you pass the transaction tax: it’s highly unlikely CME shareholders would allow the CME to stay in Chicago when some other place wouldn’t tax them.


  15. - Drury's Missing Clock - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:18 pm:

    ==an administration without a comms staff==

    Things like this are going to keep happening until the Johnson admin decides the city can’t afford another four years of undisciplined messaging. Business reporters for Bloomberg rightfully don’t understand the intricacies of our state government, but it should have been someone’s job to explain this to them.


  16. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:20 pm:

    ===Business reporters for Bloomberg rightfully don’t understand the intricacies of our state government, but it should have been someone’s job to explain this to them.===

    The “misunderstanding” is the feature, not the bug, abd the narrative wanted.

    Like the folks bent on thinking it’s all real and possible. Feature.


  17. - Rich Miller - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:22 pm:

    === rightfully don’t understand the intricacies of our state government===

    There are no intricacies in the three tops turning a unanimous thumbs down.


  18. - de Gaulle - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:30 pm:

    The Rich/OM over-under shotgun can take aim as much as it wants but it doesn’t change the ultimate fact:

    There is a narrative in Chicago related to (i) perceived business unfriendliness and (ii) rudderless leadership on business issues.

    These sorts of articles are not fantastical - they are rooted in overt statements. The drumbeat of these sorts of things is death by a thousand cuts and kills confidence in and about Chicago. That’s the issue.


  19. - Montrose - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:31 pm:

    I’m just here for the delightful deployment of Monty Python. Carry on.


  20. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:32 pm:

    ===There is a narrative===

    It’s a purposeful phony narrative that has no realistic end game or possibility, but gives the phonies an idea that they can sell, unchallenged, a narrative that fits disingenuous folks.

    You mean that?


  21. - Socially DIstant Watcher - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:42 pm:

    ==they are rooted in overt statements==

    It used to be that reporters were supposed to report on what was happening. Now it seems some report on what narratives they can construct based on out of date and out of context “overt statements” And sometimes out of covert statements or whisperings or whatever they want to believe. Readers should be appalled by this kind of “reporting”


  22. - de Gaulle - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:42 pm:

    OW:

    For those of us that actually live in Chicago, conduct business in Chicago and are perhaps even from Chicago, this narrative is ever present in our lives.

    Regardless of veracity, it is a common feature of our lives. Many of us labor extraordinarily to quash it yet it persists.

    You probably are unaware.


  23. - supplied_demand - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:45 pm:

    == There is a narrative in Chicago related to (i) perceived business unfriendliness and (ii) rudderless leadership on business issues. ==

    This type of reporting is exactly what drives that narrative. It hasn’t changed in my 20 years here regardless of who is mayor.

    The rest is just backwards justification to continue the narrative, false or not.


  24. - Rich Miller - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:45 pm:

    ===Many of us labor extraordinarily to quash it yet it persists. ===

    And when some of us push back on goofy over-hyped nonsense, you take umbrage.

    The reality is bad enough. Stick to that.


  25. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:45 pm:

    ===this narrative is ever present in our lives.===

    Then why won’t you push back harder in the phony?

    You must be purposely pushing the falsehoods.

    ===You probably are unaware.===

    LOL, gaslighting me here while you tout this phoniness… is adorable.

    Are you even a Chicagoan?


  26. - Jibba - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:46 pm:

    “There’s a big difference between mostly dead and all dead. Please, open his mouth. Now, mostly dead is slightly alive. Now, all dead…well, with all dead, there’s usually only one thing that you can do.”


  27. - Just Me 2 - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:49 pm:

    @Steve - I completely agree with you. But my opinion doesn’t matter. I’m just an anonymous poster on a cool blog.


  28. - Lucky Pierre - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:54 pm:

    Oswego resident and prolific gaslighter lectures real Chicagoan about how the city it is actually extremely business friendly under a socialist Mayor and the “most progressive Governor”


  29. - JoanP - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:59 pm:

    = Put aside the logistics and likelihood of passage. =

    Other than that, Mrs Lincoln, how did you enjoy the play?


  30. - 47th Ward - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 1:59 pm:

    To finish Rich’s thought from above, in case anyone is still not clear:

    It’s not pining. It’s passed on. This proposal is no more. It has ceased to be. It’s expired and gone to meet its maker. It’s a stiff. Bereft of life, it rests in peace. If you hadn’t printed it again in Bloomberg, it’d be pushing up the daisies. Its metabolic processes are now history. It’s off the twig. It’s kicked the bucket, it’s shuffled off its mortal coil, run down the curtain and joined the bleedin’ choir invisible. This is an ex proposal.


  31. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 2:00 pm:

    ===real Chicagoan===

    (Sigh) “Sure, Jan”

    ===actually extremely business friendly under a socialist Mayor and the “most progressive Governor”===

    I typed no such thing.

    I typed how the narrative is phony, and the “Chicagoan” agreed it’s a phony narrative, while pushing back on, well, the pushing back.

    You are disingenuous here, purposely, either to be a bit, or to muddy actual truths.


  32. - Paid to Not Play - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 2:04 pm:

    the buried lede there seems to be mentioning crime in conjunction with the FTT. A cynic might argue it was done on the same day as PTA rolling out. Good thing I’m not a cynic.


  33. - Excitable Boy - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 2:09 pm:

    - There are no intricacies in the three tops turning a unanimous thumbs down. -

    So, you’re saying there’s a chance.


  34. - Drury's Missing Clock - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 2:11 pm:

    ==There are no intricacies in the three tops turning a unanimous thumbs down.==

    I was being nice, but to put it more plainly: reporters are not intelligent people and you have to explain things to them like toddlers. Brandon’s failing at explaining.


  35. - Rich Miller - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 2:17 pm:

    ===Brandon’s failing at explaining. ===

    He’s not even trying. 120 days in and no comms staff to speak of.


  36. - Pot calling kettle - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 2:21 pm:

    ===Put aside the logistics and likelihood of passage.===

    This is one of the funniest things I’ve seen posted. (The Monty Python stuff is the great, but it’s a quote.) This blog and commentary is all about “logistics and likelihood of passage.” If you want to set those aside, there is very little to discuss on this blog.


  37. - Grandson of Man - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 2:21 pm:

    The transaction tax can join its fellow zombie talking points in refusing to accept it’s dearly departed: Illinois exodus and Democrats are bad for business.


  38. - CTU - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 2:23 pm:

    He doesnt need a comms staff when the CTU tells him what to think and say.


  39. - OneMan - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 2:24 pm:

    The CME’s servers are in Aurora in a data center they sold to a third party that is expanding yet again.

    Someone else is building a large data center across 88 from where the CME has their stuff, so moving trading out of Chicago wouldn’t be that hard.


  40. - Oswego Willy - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 2:27 pm:

    ===He doesnt need a comms staff===

    The adults disagree with you, in part because as Mayor the executive needs Comms for all functions of all departments so any mayor can relate their thoughts to the government.

    The rest is as much drivel as the Bloomberg article.

    Since - LP - reminds me, I’m not living in Chicago, I won’t be applying to be part of the 5th Floor Comms, but if I think of anyone I’ll let them know.


  41. - low level - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 3:40 pm:

    Im born and raised in the Near South / South Loop. Still reside there. I worked in the SP500 pit at the CME when I was trying a different career…. when we still had open outcry. I know something about the city and the business.

    There will be no transaction tax. Even most left of center Chicagoans oppose it. If certain members of the mayor’s staff are STILL talking about this it just shows how clueless this administration is.

    I doubt it could even pass the very left of center City Council if that were an option.


  42. - supplied_demand - Monday, Sep 18, 23 @ 3:48 pm:

    ==Oswego resident and prolific gaslighter lectures real Chicagoan ==

    LP, can we all keep this in mind next time you lecture us about what’s happening in Chicago?


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.


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