Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

Sports excite because of the contest: There are winners and losers. But in making “big shows,” some promoters make losers of us all.

South Africa’s sticker price for hosting the World Cup was marked up past $4 billion to nearly $6 billion. The games generated fewer billions in revenue, but the taxpayers of South Africa, one-fourth of whom are out of work, will see little return on their massive investment.

So why would politicians want to “invest” only to lose?

They can’t resist the hoopla. They get to throw a big show with someone else’s bucks. And if some of the money they throw around reaches their pals’ businesses, all the better.

Around the world, governments vie to spend tax money like South Africa just did. In America, we have our city-funded/state-funded sports stadiums. And remember when our president flew across the globe to pitch for the Chicago Olympics?

Rather than soccer fans paying for soccer, baseball fans for baseball, etc., taxpayers support soccer at the expense of those who find the game tedious, baseball fans helped at the expense of opera lovers, etc.

But considering the wages paid to athletes and the profits made by team owners, these subsidies flow bigger not so much from fan to fan but from regular folks to the rich.

Governments are supposed to serve us all. It ruins the game when governments pick sides through subsidies. That way we all lose.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

By: Redactor


  1. Bill Brower says:

    Some good points, but the opera thing is an unfortunate example. The NEA supports opera with money from baseball fans too.
    It’s not only sports, and sports probably isn’t the biggest culprit. Ethanol springs to mind for one.

  2. Jay says:

    Over in Tampa, FL. a few years ago, there was a ballot question to issue bonds for schools, firestations and police stations. Lost.

    Added a new football stadium ( and I think a new spring training facility for the Yankees–but not sure on that)- along with the schools, police stations, etc- won, and won big.

    Joe Six Pack, in my view, is an idiot, and the politicians are only too willing to use that for their advantage.

  3. Drik says:

    In the endgame of the ultimate progressive oligarchy, no progressive politician ever loses their job.

  4. Laurence says:

    Not quite fair with the baseball analogy. Most stadiums built with taxpayer money were approved by voters….many, as of late, were built with private funding, or partially privately funded. Also, like the China Basin area in San Francisco, new ballparks have revitalized financially strapped areas. Finally, cities often add a surtax to the price of athletic events held in city owned stadiums…this money goes to fund rec and parks, firemen, emergency response, etc. I assume they extend these services to the exploited opera lovers, too.

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