By John Hubbuch
The whole back page of today's Tribune's Business Section is a letter from one Gregory A. Ballard, Mayor of Indianapolis. His letter is addressed "Dear Illinois Business Leaders" and touts the many advantages of Indy to Illinois business leaders who are considering the "large, new state income tax increases" voted in by the Illinois law makers last week.
Hey, Mr. Ballard, mind your own business. First of all, no Illinois business will have to pay the taxes because really crafty tax lawyers who graduated from Northwestern and U of C Law Schools will come up with sneaky ways to avoid the taxes. Indianapolis lawyers come up with ways for brothers to marry sisters.
I don't think Indianapolis even has a Morton's. Just try to find braised pork cheeks with butterscotch sauce served over Tunisian truffles and Damascus figs. Ha! You can get that dish from any number of restaurants in Chicago not even counting our two three-star restaurants. Out of town clients expect something a little nicer than Chick-Fil-A.
We have the Bulls who are famous for Michael Jordan and Derrick Rose. Indy has the Pacers who are most famous for trying to beat up the other team's fans. We have the World Champion Blackhawks. Indy? Oh, they don't have a hockey team. Baseball? We have two teams. Indy? Nada. Why even their vaunted Colts will be watching the Da Bears this weekend.
Chicago has the Chicago Sympony Orchestra. Indy has John Cougar Mellenkamp. Chicago has the Lyric Opera. Indy has the touring show of Le Miz that's coming from Dayton.
People from all over the world come to visit and vacation in Chicago. No one goes on vacation in Indianapolis. Mayor Ballard in his letter touted Indy's "five major interstate highways". That's so drivers can get around and through Indianapolis as fast as possible on their way to Chicago.
I would just caution all "Illinois Business Leaders" to take a long hard look before picking up stakes and moving to a city whose greatest pride is a dumb car race that features 2,000 left turns.
One other note from today's paper. Ron and Michael Reagan are having a brotherly spat over whether Dad had Alzheimer's. In the interest of family unity, can't they just agree that Ron was just stupid? Works for me.