By Greg LeRoy
Amazon.com, Inc.’s HQ2 project is the biggest “buffalo hunt” in U.S. history, as measured in potential jobs. Besides disrupting the lives of thousands of government staffers and consultants scrambling to file those 238 applications last fall, a project of this magnitude could change the way economic development projects are negotiated and incentives are designed.
Or not. It could instead reinforce everything that is wrong, process-wise, about America’s site location system, with its corporate-dominated norms that exclude taxpayers and cause governments to over-spend on “megadeals” that can’t fiscally break even.