Chicago is my home town; the place in which I lived all of my childhood. I loved Lake Michigan and the vast array of museums; all the skyscrapers and the multitude of ethnic neighborhoods and restaurants. It was a beautiful city - and the "City that Works."
Yet it wasn't until I grew up and moved away that I learned Chicago worked differently than many other cities. It didn't work because of a wise set of laws and equity for all. It worked because Mayor Daley ran it with an iron fist, and because those in power demanded with muscle and bribes that - if you wanted to do business in Chicago, you had to pay off the right people and kow-tow to what they wanted; period, end of story.
Today, John Kass, Chicago Tribune writer, expounds on this in a column that gets it exactly right.