Years ago, in New York, Chicago, and many other major cities, city governments created local monopolies for taxicabs. They required possession of a medallion to operate one. The value of a medallion reached $1 million-plus in NY and $400K in Chicago.
Then, in the last few years, came Uber, Lyft, and others. Not at all surprisingly, the value of medallions plunged. In NYC today, they’re going for about $200K; in Chicago, for about $30K. The plunge equivalently reduced the net worth of the medallion owners.
Many of those who had borrowed money to buy their medallions ended up not only with no equity in them but substantial debts equal to the unpaid portion of their loan balance. End of story. End of a rational story, that is.
The Times’ story (which can be found at https://nyti.ms/30OnkEh), is subtitled “New Yorkers Preyed on Chicago Cabbies.” Instead of presenting the simple, logical explanation that is called for, it treats Chicago as if it were a unique case, explained by evil deeds of New Yorkers.
This is the kind of story that makes one wonder if The Times has editors any more, and what kind of reporters it has. Or perhaps the problem is that writers at The Times are paid by the word, and so pad their pieces with reams of stupid, irrelevant junk.