Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

Go Nats?

stadium, Potomac Nationals, pork, free markets, taxes, referendum, crony, welfare

Just a few miles away from where I live sits the stadium of the Potomac Nationals. I’m a fan. I’d hate to see the team we call the P-Nats leave.

But . . . Hasta la vista.

The owner of this minor league affiliate of Major League Baseball’s Washington Nationals is demanding a new stadium. He threatens to move out of Prince William County, Virginia, if he does not get it.

The Prince William County board of supervisors has already expressed interest in floating bonds to raise the $35 million the fancy new stadium would require — with the privately owned team paying the money back, with interest, over the next 30 years.

Compared to other crony-ish deals around the country, not such a terrible taxpayer swindle. Still, zillions of wrongs don’t make this right. County taxpayers would be on the hook in case of default. And if the marketplace believed the team could actually make such payments, a bank or other investors would come to the rescue.

Thankfully, a monkey wrench has been thrown into the deal. A county supervisor has proposed that voters should get a chance to decide, via a November referendum. The board of supervisors will consider the referendum tonight.

Voters should get the final say. But if there is a referendum, as much as I love having the team here, I will vote NO. I don’t cotton to forcing others to pay for my preferred entertainment.

Government has certain legitimate roles. Subsidizing sports is not one.

Even if the new stadium would be closer to my home than the old one.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

Printable PDF


By: CS Admin


  1. John F Brennan says:

    You are correct. Professional sports and other entertainments have no right to taxpayer financing. They should not be exempt from the old and honored principal that you should be limited to what you can afford to play in on your own merits. 
    The idiocy is not in profit maximizing owners, as they are simply acting in an economically rational manner. It is in the elected “leadership” of the governmental entities which would spend their scare resources on such projects.  
    A rule should be made that no governmental entity with a any deficit in the last decade, and no unfounded liabilities which would be allowed to offer such a scheme, even with an approved referendum supported by the majority of shortsighted taxpayers.
    Normally mortgaging the future is a serious act, only to be undertaken if absolutely necessary.  It is a pity that those spending other people’s money believe that they are exempt from or can suspend the laws of economics, at least for the rest of their term. 

  2. Rick Rund says:

    Our local AAA club, the Reno Aces, worked a deal with the city and it probably has not worked out as well as some would have hoped. I say local because it is 50 miles to our east and across the border into Nevada. As I am in Northeast California and don’t keep up with Reno/Sparks politics I don’t know all the details but it has had some issues. Absolutely true that governments have no business delving into building stadiums. And we love the Reno Aces…

  3. Lawrence Stirling says:

    Mr. Brennan is entirely correct.

    But I would go one step further.

    The reason that the major sports franchises can get away with black mailing metropolitan areas with threats of leaving is that they have effective monopolies on high-level sports entertainment.

    Contrary to the anti-trust laws of the nation, Congress granted effective monopolies to all three professional sports leagues.

    Congress should repeal those monopolies (with their attendant TY contracts) and allow free competition.

    Then when the Chargers walk away from San Diego, another would-be team owner could appeal for the right to play in the now vacant San Diego Stadium.

    Monopolies are designed to create shortages and high prices. Monopolies backed by government force are ten times worse.

    Larry Stirling

  4. Pat says:

    Hasta la bye-bye!

    Whenever I get a chance to vote on spending bills, now I almost always vote ‘NO’.   It doesn’t matter anymore how ‘good’ the spending plan is.   Government needs to shrink, drastically.

    • JFB says:

      Very easy to do as, on analysis, most of the spending is non-essential and far for the necessary “core functions” of the entity proposing it. No brainers mostly which, if economically viable will be provided in short order by private enterprise.

Leave a Reply to John F Brennan Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© 2020 Common Sense with Paul Jacob, All Rights Reserved. Back to top