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The Problem with Subsidizing Huge Stadiums for Billionaire Team Owners

Section(s): 
  • The Nation’s sports editor questions whether taxpayer money should be spent to build new arenas in cities where public infrastructure dollars are scarce.
  • Triple Play: Sports, Politics & Greed
  • Stop the stadium lease signings now!

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September 13, 2013 | The Nation’s sports editor David Zirin tells Bill that Americans are paying for expensive new sports stadiums in cities around the country to the benefit of wealthy team owners, who lobby hard for their construction. Zirin says the biggest irony is that many fans can’t afford tickets to major league games, even though they paid for the stadium where their favorite team plays — never mind those residents who aren’t sports fans.

He points to the Minnesota Twins stadium, opened in 2010, that was “built entirely with public money, even though it had been rejected a dozen times by the voters in various referendum.” Add to that problems that result when tight municipal budgets mean choosing between needed infrastructure projects and new stadiums. In Minnesota, Zirin notes, “the very week they were gonna break ground on the new stadium, the bridge collapsed in Minneapolis, sending about a dozen people to their deaths.”

David Zirin is The Nation’s sports editor.

Full story…

Related:

Triple Play: Sports, Politics & Greed, Bill Moyers, Moyers & Company

Dave Zirin, The Nation magazine’s first ever sports writer, joins Bill Moyers on this week’s Moyers & Company. He’s been called the best sportswriter in the United States, a provocative reporter and social critic whose books include Bad Sports: How Owners are Ruining the Games We Love, and his most, recent, Game Over: How Politics has Turned the Sports World Upside Down.

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Stop the stadium lease signings now! Will Shapira, Special to Evergreene Digest

  • The long-awaited  public showdown between the Wilfs and Gov. Dayton is now at hand. 
  • Wilfs ordered to pay $84.5M in New Jersey real estate fraud case.
  • Stadium contract isn't final, so let's get a better deal.