25 March 2008
How the game is played
Michael Bates is justifiably incensed at what he calls "Sonics madness," and wants to know what happened to all the fiscally-responsible Republicans in this state.
My guess is, they're queuing up for free tickets. The idea of state incentives was mentioned in the letter of intent Sonics ownership sent to Oklahoma City, though I really didn't expect them to be quite so blatant.
While libertarians rightly bemoan the notion of forcing taxpayers to subsidize wealthy team owners, they should understand that the market works both ways. If sports leagues have the leverage to demand public financing of stadia as a precondition for moving a franchise to a city, they would be foolish not to use it.
Luring a professional sports team is difficult and generally not economically smart. It is rather galling that the vast majority of a town's residents who will never attend a game are forced to pay for the privilege of added traffic congestion. Nonetheless, there are plenty of cities out there begging for a team. Public subsidies for arenas are the cost of playing.
I suppose this makes me a financial relativist; the best I can hope for, therefore, is to become a financial relativist with season tickets.Posted at 11:14 AM to Net Proceeds , Soonerland