03.03.10

The Ricketts Family Is Tired Of Taxes (Unless They Pay For The Cubs ST Facility)

Posted in Baseball, Greedy Motherfuckers, Ugly New Stadiums at 4:05 pm by

The state of Arizona and the Cactus league have come down with a severe case of affluenza.  The symptoms are classic: on one hand, Republican fury over taxes and “government waste” while the other hand finds itself busy in the public’s pocket.  As AP reports in today’s Baltimore Sun, at Casa De Ricketts, they have no problem with levying taxes on the locals for the benefit of their sports franchises:

PHOENIX – Four teams opposed to a funding plan for a new Chicago Cubs spring-training stadium skipped a kickoff event Tuesday hosted by Mesa.

The Chicago White Sox, Los Angeles Angels, Los Angeles Dodgers and the Cincinnati Reds oppose a spring-training ticket surcharge to build a new Cubs complex and to finance other improvements.

Angels spokesman Tim Mead said it’s fundamentally wrong to implement a tax on loyal baseball fans.

State Rep. John McComish’s bill would add a $1 surcharge to car-rental fees in Maricopa County and an 8 percent surcharge to all spring-training tickets. It’s intended to generate $58 million that would finance bonds issued by the Arizona Sports and Tourism Authority for a new Cubs complex.

Mesa would be responsible for $26 million of the $84 million price tag.

Given the state of Arizona’s shameful political legacy (playing host to the Keating / S&L scandals of the 80s,  giving MLK the finger, electing Senator/Douchebag John “unemployment benefits prevent people from looking for work” Kyl), there is much to like in the poetically just idea that Cub Nation’s new bosses have chosen those particular sun-bleached suburbs for their panhandling efforts using local government as a sock puppet.

Yet, it shouldn’t pass without comment that the billionaire Ricketts clan, far from shining examples of the wonders of free-market capitalism, are old hands at socialism for the rich.  In 2006, family trust member Pete Ricketts’ attempt to buy a Nebraska Senate seat included a TV spot where the plucky former Ameritrade CEO is transplanted to a farm and thereupon fulminates against “special interests” and rising taxes from atop a hay bale, the accompanying bucolic aroma no doubt appropriate to the hypocrisy.

5 Responses to “The Ricketts Family Is Tired Of Taxes (Unless They Pay For The Cubs ST Facility)”

  1. Ben Schwartz says:

    If the Cubs are going to be America’s Team then America can at least pay for a Spring Training stadium.

  2. Lulu says:

    The Ricketts didn’t draft the bill, Rep. McCornish did. If the voters don’t want it to happen, then they need to call their State Representatives and tell them so. It’s the legislative process that determines whether this happens, not the Ricketts. However, judging from how the entire area benefits from the Cubs franchise and how other teams are intended to benefit from this bill, too, it’s certainly worth the citizens’ consideration. Get educated and then vote the way you want, citizens, because that’s your job.

  3. Absolutely true, Lulu: legislation can be defeated by informed outcry. So let’s hope that happens. In the meantime, let’s not apologize for systematic public subsidy of private assets nor whip out the civics textbooks far more quickly than the owners of those assets whip out their checkbooks.

    It’s possible Congressman McCornish just woke up one morning and out of the blue decided that public service and Ricketts service were one and the same. It could also be that the Congressman did that without once getting the idea that the Cubs might move to someplace more legislatively friendly.

    It’s also possible that the Cubs might win a pennant.

  4. Zellah60609 says:

    Insert appropriate Freddy Garcia quote here….

  5. Ben Schwartz says:

    See Rob, outside of 35th Street or the St. Louis area, this Cub hate just doesn’t sell.

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