Friday, April 01, 2005

This is what Plutocracy Looks Like

Oh well, the Jets won the bid for the stadium. And it's especially nice because NY1 reported that according to a "Quinnipiac University poll released Thursday, Fifty-three percent of city voters don’t want the stadium, and 38 percent approve of the project." Thanks Mayor. Check out the commentary from Neil DeMause, and this one from Mike Lupica.I do have one friend who is super excited. "I'm a Jets fan!" he said, "Of course I want the stadium,"
but that guy's related to an actual former Jets player. In case you're under any delusions about union support for this stadium, note this connected guy's role in bringing out the union support.

But enough about that. In old news, the kind I'm just catching up on, go check out this article about priorities in the AFL-CIO from In These Times on 3/25. There's a really interesting set of comments following the article which gets into a discussion of reasons for the 1970s economic turn. For even more discussion of what's going on, you might want to check out this blog: working life and of course, labor notes.
If you want to know more about that global downturn though, I suggest reading things by Giovanni Arrighi, such as this online article or this book.
and finally -- about Iraq:
There were at least two good round-ups of information about what's going in Iraq right now. One appears in today's Common Dreams, an article by Carolyn Eisenberg (who I heard speak at the American Historical Association conference, where she really rocked the house, as much as historians do that) and in this London Review of Books piece by Rory Stewart and this radio commentary from Rahul Mahajan.
and that's it for today.

1 comment:

PPRM said...

As for the stadium, I really cannot say that I am surprised. After all, the bulk of the MTA Board was put there by Gov. Pataki and Mayor Bloomberg. The fact of the matter is that the stadium may never get built (legal challenges, money, etc.). It is amazing that the MTA Board chose a bid that guarantees LESS money than the others. In particular, the project's cost has now skyrocketed to $2.2 billion. Considering the state and city would contribure $600 million, the Jets are on the hook for $1.6 billion. Hmm...the developers they claim are part of their offer are offering $440 million(subject to rezoning) and the Jets want to pay $220 million so far. Therefore, there is a lot of unaccounted for money here that either the Jets' ownership will shell out or they expect a submissive public to pay for. In the process they will shaft their fans by charging more for seat licences(a payment for the right to pay for tickets), season tickets, and the luxury boxes.

In sporting terms, this is the same team that left Shea Stadium in the 1970's when NYC really could have used the boost of more professional teams (even if just at the level of morale). Instead of rewarding the Yankees, Mets, or Knicks, which are teams that have complained a heck of a lot about wanting new stadiums or arenad but have stayed nonetheless, NYC is supposed to embrace the team that left. Furthermore, assuming the stadium is built, how soon until the Jets start to complain that their stadium should be renovated (10, 15 years at best). Guess who would pay for that?