I had a fantastic adventure last night. I held a ticket to the Van Halen concert at the Allstate Arena (nee Rosemont Horizon). Remembering at the last minute that I would need cash for the tolls but didn't have any, I had to devise an alternate route. To make a long story short, I ended up heading west on Deerfield Road, then basically heading back southeast to the arena. The trip took a little over two hours and was free of stress and heavy traffic. I noticed that the route my iPhone's GPS offered me went partially along Milwaukee Avenue. I decided to, on the return trip, see if that street would take me back to Milwaukee. It did! More precisely, it took me past what looked like the back door of Six Flags Great America, then merged with Highway 41 not much further north.
The 33-mile trip along Highway 45--which literally passes by the Allstate Arena's front door--was an enjoyable and instructive drive. Almost the entire stretch was filled with corporate headquarters alternating with small-town main streets. Of course, plenty of nondescript urban sprawl was interspersed. The drive partly coincided with the Golden Corridor. It was kind of unsettling to see so much wealth creation concentrated along the same highway. I snidely joked to myself that perhaps the reason the freeway to Wisconsin is routed elsewhere is so that we don't develop a complex.
I'm a political liberal, but have always been a liberal with lots of fine print. The first item of fine print is that I'm pro-work. To me, work is not only the right thing to do--it's the only thing to do. (I sometimes apply that more literally than I should!) Also, I don't much care about how much money other people make in particular, though the increasing gulf between rich and poor concerns me. Though the mechanism is more subtle and contains more contradictions than Republicans portray, I believe wealth does trickle down.
Second, I'm pro-business. And I'm confident in the knowledge that businesses exist to make money and that that aim needs no further justification. That's not to say that further boundary conditions--such as corporate philanthropy or employee-friendly policies--aren't desirable. They most certainly are. I've been fired before (not that it put me out on the streets or anything) and experienced the painful end of that reality. I had to accept that it must have been a business decision that needed to be made, as much as I also think it was their loss and another's gain.