Lots of big news today, but the story that has people talking from Seattle to New York to Washington to Nashville (and probably a lot of other places) is Amazon's announcement that it won't built half of its HQ2 second headquarters in New York after all.
It's a stunning move. And I can't think of it without also considering Jeff Bezos's decision last week to publish a Medium post claiming that the parent company of the National Enquirer tried to blackmail him.
Both moves are bold, unexpected decisions that upend everything. This time there are so many things to consider. Things like:
- Maybe big cities shouldn't be in the business of subsidizing big companies to begin with.
- What about all the small businesses in the outer boroughs that were salivating about the prospect of thousands of well-paid customers.
- And don't forget about all those people who rushed to buy condos in Long Island City (reportedly including some Amazon employees who did so just before the HQ2 deal was announced).
I suppose the winner in this whole thing might be Nashville, which got the consolation prize in the HQ2 sweepstakes to start -- even though Amazon says this isn't like Miss America, where the runner up simply takes over for the original winner.
Still, Bezos and Amazon just provide one thing: This is a founder, and a company, that thinks changing its mind and doing unexpected things is no vice.
Here's what else I'm reading today:
- Shutdown averted, 'national emergency' to be declared, court case comes next.
- Speaking of things that won't happen: California ditched its high speed rail project. (Here's what comes next)
- Most millennials would take a pay cut to work at a sustainable company
- Lululemon grants up to six months paid leave for maternity, paternity and adoption care.
- Millennials remember Boomer music better than their own, according to science
Also: Washington and Lincoln never used to read email newsletters...
So in their honor, we'll be taking Monday off for President's Day.