The taxpayer, the Falcons and the question of priorities

As owner of the Atlanta Falcons, Arthur Blank runs a class operation that represents the city well. And as such arrangements go, the proposal to build a $1 billion Falcons stadium downtown with $300 million in taxpayer subsidies is reasonable and probably fiscally sound.

But still ….

The NFL is easily the most profitable sports league on the planet. All 32 of its teams are included in Forbes’ magazine’s list of the 50 most valuable sports franchises on the planet. (The Falcons are listed at 35th with a value of $831 million, up from $545 million when Blank bought the team in 2002.) And because live sports programming is becoming more and more valuable to advertisers, lucrative new contracts will bring more the league more than $6 billion a year in TV revenue beginning in 2014. That represents a 50 to 60 percent increase.

Now contrast that prosperity with the fiscal plight of state and local government. Thousands of workers have been laid off in Georgia, including police officers, firefighters and teachers. We tell ourselves that education is the key to prosperity, but in many cases we can’t afford to keep our kids in school for the once-standard 180 days a year. Our transportation infrastructure is inadequate to meet the demands placed upon it, yet any attempt to raise taxes to generate the necessary money is rejected.

Overall, we’re told, government can no longer do the things we want it to do; it must do only those things that we need it to do.

Given those realities, why should the Falcons demand that the public subsidize their new stadium, particularly when the publicly funded Georgia Dome continues to serve that purpose admirably?

The short answer is also the honest answer — because they can. They don’t really need the money, or even a new stadium for that matter, but in a sports-mad world they can get it. So why not? Everyone else is doing it. It’s a “bigger is better” league, from quarterbacks that go 6-5, 275 pounds to stadiums that charge fans a five-figure fee just for the right to later buy tickets. And in that hyper-competitive world, it is considered unacceptable for the Falcons to be condemned to play in the 20-year-old Georgia Dome, the 10th-oldest stadium in the league.

Under the proposed terms, the Georgia World Congress Center Authority would supply the land for a new stadium, plus contribute roughly a third of the construction cost. That public contribution would be raised through a 30-year extension of the hotel/motel tax. Proponents of the deal argue that because the hotel/motel tax is paid by visitors to Atlanta, rather than by residents of metro Atlanta, it is somehow less of a tax. However, it is also money that by a simple act of the Legislature could be diverted to purposes more crucial than subsidizing a quite profitable sports franchise.

Under the terms of the proposal, the Falcons “will retain revenue streams from the new stadium, including tickets, premium seating, food and beverage, sponsorships, naming rights and certain parking revenue.” That’s for all events at the stadium, not just Falcons games. In return, the Falcons will pay the state authority $2.5 million a year. For the sake of context, that’s about what the team pays an offensive lineman.

And again, in the universe of such deals, the Falcons could perhaps have demanded even better treatment.

Assessed from a purely practical point of view, such a deal is still hard to justify. But this is the world of sports, in which rationality and practicality are often bench players to irrationality and emotion. If any other line of work inflicted the concussions, the crippling injuries, the long-term brain damage and shortened lifespans of football, for example, it would have been legislated out of existence long ago.

Instead, we pack stadiums and find ourselves yelling at our TV sets, driven by the human thirst for pride, glory and rushes of adrenalin, even if they have to be experienced second-hand and subsidized with money that would be much better spent elsewhere.

– Jay Bookman

702 comments Add your comment

stands for decibels

December 12th, 2012
7:17 am

I’m going to be fairly bold and say that this shouldn’t be subsidized because in ~10 years, the NFL is not going to be the going concern it is now. Sufficient information about those “concussions, the crippling injuries, the long-term brain damage and shortened lifespans of football” will likely relegate it to what pro boxing is today.

There’ll be people who continue to follow it rabidly, but a lot more people–a tipping point, if you will–think it’s gross and uncivilized.

(I might have the timeline wrong, however, in which case g’head and raise that thar debt limit–it’s football, which is still Gawdz sport!)

Granny Godzilla

December 12th, 2012
7:23 am

I am opposed to the building of a new stadium subsidized by taypayer dollars.

This state won’t expand Medicaid, but will expand Falconaid.

That’s what I call bass ackwards.

Mick

December 12th, 2012
7:25 am

Don’t do it! We built the marlins a stadium down here and after one year, they promptly sold off all their best players. Miami dade county is on the hook for half a billion dollars for 30 years. Corporate welfare indeed…

stands for decibels

December 12th, 2012
7:28 am

(blog hijack alert)

After calling sheetz downstairs, I learned from Corbin that Ravi had passed.

I’ll second Corbin’s kind words: Welcome to Nirvana, Ravi. Jai guru deva.

and for the rest of us, try to remember you don’t need no horoscope or a microscope to see the mess that you’re in.

TaxPayer

December 12th, 2012
7:31 am

“Get you popcorn… your peanuts… here,” cried out the former teacher as she made her way through the stadium crowd during the opening Falcons game.

Football, baseball and basketball are excellent ways to teach our children physics and the cost of admission is a win-win for all. The owners profit while the attendees also get a lesson in the ways of the free market. It’s the Republican/Libertarian way.

stands for decibels

December 12th, 2012
7:33 am

This state won’t expand Medicaid, but will expand Falconaid.

What’s going to be troubling about this is that you’re not going to get the usual alignment of left/right–ostensibly progressive individuals (i.e. elected city officials) are going to hold their nose and cheerlead it because hey, it’s JERBs and money.

If we actually had an organized left wing in this mess of a country we’d stand in solidarity against these thieving, nay, murderous NFL owners. (Anyone want to tell me that they’ve disclosed everything they know about what their “sport” is doing to the people playing it? )

Corbin Sharpe. Baby Boomer leech...and earned it!

December 12th, 2012
7:41 am

I’m a Falcon fan and have been one since Tommy Nobis, but I disagree greatly with the new stadium deal. We don’t need it. Let that allocated money do better work for the people of Georgia. Use it for education, or as Granny said, Medicaid. let’s, just for once, take care of our fellow Georgians first.

Darwin

December 12th, 2012
7:41 am

Did Grover Norquist sign off on this hotel tax?

Li'l Aynie

December 12th, 2012
7:42 am

Build! Build anything so long as jobs are created and tangible value is likely. Georgia voters rejected infrastructure improvement. The Georgia state government has never, and will never, do anything useful toward creating jobs and future value.

So, let the NFL and Aurthur Blank work with the city of Atlanta to create jobs and future value. There’s no one else to turn to.

Moderate Line

December 12th, 2012
7:43 am

The NFL is easily the most profitable sports league on the planet. All 32 of its teams are included in Forbes’ magazine’s list of the 50 most valuable sports franchises on the planet.
+++++
I have no problem with the article other than your assuming value has something to do with profit. That is not the case especially when it comes to sports teams. A good book to read is “Soccernomics” by Stefan Szymanski.

stands for decibels

December 12th, 2012
7:46 am

by a simple act of the Legislature could be diverted to purposes more crucial than subsidizing a quite profitable sports franchise.

Continuing my “why America’s left wing sucks” rant–our think tanks would be directing media to write scathing exposes of shocking right wing hypocrisy; the elected Democrats would be using this as a club to beat Deal and company senseless over their Medicaid expansion stupidity.

Instead–”ooh, shiny object!”

by the way, I’ll link to this page, which is always a useful resource re: stadia scammery, wherever you sit on the political spectrum:

http://www.fieldofschemes.com/

…I see they’ve got GA’s little dillemma as their latest post. Good.

Meanwhile, there’s still that little problem of the GWCCA needing its debt limit raised if it wants to sell stadium bonds, something that would take a vote of the state legislature.

Raise a debt limit? Why that’s a crime against nature, innit?

Citizen of the World

December 12th, 2012
7:50 am

I second what Stands for Decibels says about the increased awareness of the physical risks of football as it is currently played affecting people’s interest in it and support for it. I’ve started to feel some qualms of conscious when attending a football game, like, do I really want to encourage this? It may also change the way the game is played — make it less brutal — which would let some fans down, no doubt.

Richard Braswell

December 12th, 2012
7:51 am

Hotel Tax? Why would anyone book a room in Atlanta?

Mr. Snarky

December 12th, 2012
7:52 am

Amen Jay. It is ridiculous that we’re subsidizing this.

Andy

December 12th, 2012
7:53 am

This money sure could feed and educate a lot of uneducated colored kids in City of Atlanta schools.

Aquagirl

December 12th, 2012
7:54 am

People will complain but nobody will be un-elected over this. Politicians know it. So we’ll spend $300 million for Arthur to increase his profit margin and the politicians will get skybox tickets. The end.

clem

December 12th, 2012
7:59 am

there are better and higher uses of those monies; if falcons willing to spend 700m, why not the remainder? but i have asked in other forums, where is the cost benefit analysis? did they do one for the aquarium? football hall of fame? nascar? what was the deal on the braves stadium? just seems like all we are doing is increasing blanks’s net worth so he can compete with jerry jones. but football seems to be king in the south, except tech.

barking frog

December 12th, 2012
8:02 am

From ancient rome, we still have remnants of the stadium. Think posterity
and hold your nose.

Georgia

December 12th, 2012
8:02 am

Subsidize victory? Get a load of the falcon cheerleaders. One billion is a bargain. The more fans boo subsidies, the more they jinx our playoff hopes. Yes, they could put a couple of new sewer lines in cabbage town, or add another lane to the connector, but that don’t win no superbowls, now does it. Some of the money should be used to study just how Mike Smith is winning these games, cause nobody can figure it out..

Senor Coughee

December 12th, 2012
8:04 am

I concur, Jay. Falcons and the NFL want a new stadium? Fine, let THEM pay for it.

stands for decibels

December 12th, 2012
8:05 am

I’ve started to feel some qualms of [conscience] when attending a football game

Multiply that times scores of millions today. Those qualms will only grow over the years to come.

I’ll point out that boxing used to be the most popular spectator sport in America; its stars were the most feted. These days, I daresay 95% of Americans couldn’t tell you who the current heavyweight champion is.

“All things must pass. All things must pass away,” as a wise man once put it.

Martinette

December 12th, 2012
8:06 am

For once, I agree copletely with JB – this is a bad idea, a gross insult, and a done deal. But I do find it a bit rich to have this coming from the same source that supported that wasteful boondoggle TSPLOST.

Adam

December 12th, 2012
8:08 am

Hey whatever hurts the Falcons is good for me. I’m a Saints fan. Despite their record this year. I still remember when they sucked way worse.

Citizen of the World

December 12th, 2012
8:09 am

Thank you for correcting my spelling Stands — I do know better, I was just not being careful!

Welcome to the Occupation

December 12th, 2012
8:09 am

but in many cases we can’t afford to keep our kids in school for the once-standard 180 days a year.

If any other line of work inflicted the concussions, the crippling injuries, the long-term brain damage and shortened lifespans of football, for example, it would have been legislated out of existence long ago.

Bread and circus. When social tensions are escalating due to the savage attacks on working people being carried out by the very same class of people from which the owners of these franchises come (except for the Packers), it’s not surprising that the people would be seeking escape in traditions such as professional football, which provides some sense of continuity and tradition amidst a world of things that is eroding under an assault of global capitalism. It’s also thus not surprising that the owners of these sports teams act like owners everywhere else: infinitely self-important, entitled, preening, demanding of tribute in return for the privilege of letting you give them ever more lavish fees for the benefits they claim to bring. While teachers get pink slips and infrastructure creaks, the gods of the NFL — and baseball and basketball, too — strut around like an upstart noble class.

Yep, perfectly typical of the time we’re living in.

straitroad

December 12th, 2012
8:11 am

I see this as a no-brainer. We should not be subsidizing a stadium with tax money. I don’t think football stadiums are what people have in mind as they pay their tax bills.

fair and balanced

December 12th, 2012
8:12 am

Total waste of money on a bunch of overpaid crybabies and their billionaire owner! Think if the old Fulton County Stadium were not torn down in 1997 -we could easily renovate it and give the Falcons their open air stadium -back. Oh I forgot some of the paint on the dome will be faded amd a few o fthe seats will need to be replaced on the Georgia Dome by 2017 making it obsolete. How soon after this expensive corporate boondoggle is built will the crybabies be asking for a domed stadium because they do not want to play in the wet and cold when the roof won’t close?
Win a superbowl first and we can begin the discussion otherwise 300 million dollars could go for a lot 9of other things in this city. How about more police to protect the tourists and fans?

Whatever

December 12th, 2012
8:13 am

I’m a no on this one, too. The tax money should be used in a way more consistent with Georgia’s needs or not collected.

Scuba Steve

December 12th, 2012
8:13 am

In fairness, the revenue from a Super Bowl & National Championship games being hosted here will be significant.

And the NFL has been pretty clear. Build a new stadium, you’re getting a Super Bowl. Atlanta is already in the running for college championship games, a new stadium would seal that deal for years to come. Same with Final Four in college basketball — think Ford Field.

I get the point here — I won’t particularly like swallowing this pill. But there is another side.

Keep Up the Good Fight!

December 12th, 2012
8:14 am

More and more we hear that the promises made to taxpayers as a result of these corporate subsidies and corporate welfare programs are not living up to their promised return and they are not bringing the purport job benefits promised. I am amazed, although I should no longer be, that the GOP supporters continue to have little problem supporting theis corporate welfare while at the same time telling us how the country is “broke” and that we have to cut health and other beneifts which will result in real dealths. Its shameful and sickening.

straitroad

December 12th, 2012
8:14 am

stands for decibels

December 12th, 2012
8:05 am

The concussion problem could be solved tomorrow by removing the facemasks from the helmets. I can promise you that players would not lead with their helmets anymore.

TaxPayer

December 12th, 2012
8:15 am

I’m sure the Georgia legislature could come up with a seat tax to help the poor guy build his stadium. I’d be good with that.

barking frog

December 12th, 2012
8:15 am

Dogfights are outlawed. Cockfights are outlawed. Human fights are great, though.

Oscar

December 12th, 2012
8:15 am

A 300 million dollar investment with a reture of 2.5 per year. That’s less than a one per cent return on our investment.

And that does not count the investment for infrastructure around the stadium.

And how do we know the Falcons will be able to raise and pay off their share of 700 million.

Not a sound investment from a financial point for us.

Poor Boy from Alabama

December 12th, 2012
8:16 am

Another fine example of a “public-private” partnership (aka Crony Capitalism). :-( That same distortion of free market capitalism allows the NFL to operate as a “non-profit” for tax purposes.

http://tracking.si.com/2012/10/18/nfl-non-profit-tax-status-senator/

The Falcons should pay the full freight if they think they need a new stadium.

stands for decibels

December 12th, 2012
8:16 am

One more comment and I gotta go producin’…

While teachers get pink slips and infrastructure creaks, the gods of the NFL — and baseball and basketball, too — strut around like an upstart noble class.

Let’s make this plain, in case anyone doesn’t comprehend this^^ business–the beef is with the ownership. Whatever the players can negotiate for themselves in an organized fashion, they have more than earned, and I’ll include anything they can manage to sue out of the b@stards down the road to pay for the TBI treatments.

And those b@stards include the disgusting farm-team college and high school operations out there as well. I hope their insurance policies are up to date because they’re gonna need ‘em.

/drive-by

Tundra Dude

December 12th, 2012
8:17 am

So we’ll spend $300 million for Arthur to increase his profit margin and the politicians will get skybox tickets.

and bragging rights for the mayor (I built that). He scores no points for fixing potholes, hiring teachers, or expanding health care.

USinUK - not very ladylike (and former Girl Scout)

December 12th, 2012
8:17 am

the nfl should hold a frickin BAKE SALE if they want a new stadium – not ask the taxpayers to subsidize it.

Welcome to the Occupation

December 12th, 2012
8:18 am

George P. Burdell

December 12th, 2012
8:19 am

Totally agree with you on this one Jay. It seems pretty amazing that we would tear down a building that most of us can remember being built and billed as the next great move for the City. This should be funded entirely by the Falcons, and to a lesser extent, the businesses that directly benefit from having an NFL team, and more importantly, fan money. The NFL, and even college, have moved to the point that regular fans find it tougher and tougher to regularly attend games. Many of the seats are owned by corporations who use it to entertain. Problem is when the team doesn’t play well, those seats go unused. Even many of the mighty SEC schools saw attendance problems this year compared to past years, especially for the throw-away games against patsies. Bowl games are almost completely corporate now making it tough for fans of the teams playing to get anywhere close to decent seats. I love football as much as any other person, but I think we are likely to see a very big shift over the next decade or two. Most colleges do not use an accrual accounting basis and if they did, I doubt any would be profitable. They count on ever expanding TV contracts to cover expenses and make fundraising pleas to alumni for capital projects. If that cash cow stops growing, or declines, it will be a house of cards tumbling down. And, it will become harder to convince alumni that can no longer afford to go to the games why they should make a capital contribution. The NFL, and all pro sports, have leverage because of the prestige, tax money, etc that comes with a team. However, as the Marlins owners have shown, that comes with a certain trust that once violated, is hard to impossible to ever regain.

Ronald Reagan Parkway

December 12th, 2012
8:20 am

The New Orleans Saints had their Superdome remodeled after Hurricane Katrina. They were able to win a Super Bowl after the renovations and still play there. As a matter of fact, the next Super Bowl (2013) will be held there. If the Falcons would like a new dome, it should be up to Arthur Blank to do the funding. Will the new dome create some kind of magic power and enable the Falcons to capture a Super Bowl title?

stands for decibels

December 12th, 2012
8:21 am

one other thing:

The concussion problem could be solved tomorrow by removing the facemasks from the helmets.

I’ve given that a lot of thought already. I’ve considered retro approaches, doing the leather-helmet thing. And here’s what I’ve concluded: I think you can’t tweak and “fix” this problem. I think they’ll try a lot of things (you’ve already seen a lot of rule-book protections out there to try to alleviate the worst of it) but they will fail.

(See also this.)

The game as designed has been crippling and killing people for many years. And as for complicity–just think of the NFL as this year’s Phillip Morris.

/drive-by for realz

Redneck Convert (R--and proud of it)

December 12th, 2012
8:22 am

Well, I hate taxes but if we’re going to have them then they might as well go for something most of us like, rather than that dang edumacation. Who wants to pay for some schoolmarm to drone on about about history when we can have real big people trying to knock each others brains out and break legs and arms?

As for these sissy people whining about violence, I say, I got your violence right here, pal. It’s folks like you that’s turning us into Socialist Europe.

Besides, I got 10 bucks on the Falcons to make it to the Super Bowl.

Have a good Hump Day everybody.

barking frog

December 12th, 2012
8:22 am

Craft beers are replacing major brand sales. That does not bode
well for the NFL.

godless heathen - fiscal cliff dweller

December 12th, 2012
8:22 am

stands: You are more optimistic about the progress of civilization than I. Your prediction may come true but I think it will be decades, not years. In the meantime, GO FALCONS!

JRATL

December 12th, 2012
8:24 am

Yes build it. Revenue for the state and the Falcons. Take us into the future. We fianlly passed achohol sales in Georgia how long did that take? Super Bowl. At least we’ll know where the hotel tax money is going versus now.

Oscar

December 12th, 2012
8:24 am

Another fine example of a “public-private” partnership (aka Crony Capitalism).

——–

Another word for that is socialism.

Oscar

December 12th, 2012
8:26 am

Besides, I got 10 bucks on the Falcons to make it to the Super Bowl.

_______

There is one born every minute.

USinUK - not very ladylike (and former Girl Scout)

December 12th, 2012
8:27 am

“Another word for that is socialism.”

oh, FFS … no it’s not.

fercryingoutLOUD.

fedup

December 12th, 2012
8:28 am

Like I said before, Arthur got his tax cut. Now you are the job creator. Create the da@n jobs.

Corbin Sharpe. Baby Boomer leech...and earned it!

December 12th, 2012
8:28 am

“GO FALCONS!” Yes. If I have to pay for this stadium, then GO FALCONS…GO ELSEWHERE!!

Gale

December 12th, 2012
8:28 am

Yep, We don’t need a new stadium when we cannot afford to pay teachers.

I heard a piece on Ravi Shankar this morning that brought tears to my eyes. I still have an LP somewhere in storage of his traditional music.

Oscar

December 12th, 2012
8:28 am

If the Falcons want to play a few games outdoors in the early fall, they could play at Turner Field. Should be able to work out a deal for the right price.

Tundra Dude

December 12th, 2012
8:29 am

It’s interesting and amusing to see these successful Capitalists transformed into welfare mooches upon buying a sports team.

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

December 12th, 2012
8:29 am

JAY

I’ve been watching this develop for some time. The dome is only 20 years old…and we finally have a team that can fill the seats and make the dome an annoying place for opposing teams. The real travesty beyond what you mentioned is the dry screwing the faithful seat holders will get. This happened in Dallas as you know and ticket holders had to come up 50K (for one of my colleagues), had to purchase all preseason tickets at $375 a piece..the average fan holding seats for years will not be able to afford this or will be relegated to subpar seats.

What you left out is that the city gets 11 billion revenue from conventions which may or may not be favorably impacted. Instead of coming from current hotel tax revenue, I hope this dopes downtown increase the hotel/rental car and possibly airport taxes so the net to city is close to zero as possible.
I also understand the bonding capacity of the WCCA will be increased from 200 to 300 million…

Lynnie Gal

December 12th, 2012
8:30 am

Building a billion dollar stadium in this financial climate where people have lost homes, jobs, and 401Ks, where children are crammed into crowded classrooms, students are drowning in college loans, our infrastructure is failing and middle class Georgians can’t afford health care, it’s obscene that the Falcons demand a new stadium when the old stadium is relatively new. People should boycott the Falcon’s games.

Jm

December 12th, 2012
8:31 am

I’ll keep it short

Agreed

Oscar

December 12th, 2012
8:31 am

US – Have some coffee. Or is it tea time already over there.

the cat

December 12th, 2012
8:32 am

I don’t think the thug players of the NFL represent this city the way I would like it represented.

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

December 12th, 2012
8:32 am

Oscar

December 12th, 2012
8:28 am

Good idea except it won’t work. The new stadiums have capacity of over 100k…so another 50k seats will need to be added to Turner Field…no, the other cities have new outdoor or retractable roof facilities…

I’m also wondering beyond rent, how much the city tax on tickets, if any, plays into this..

guy

December 12th, 2012
8:32 am

Jay, you are 101% correct. If only we all had our priorities in order. It is a crying shame that children are hungry and education is on the back burner. Selfish individuals,we are!

Oscar

December 12th, 2012
8:32 am

Jm – Keep it short? And I so enjoy reading your long comments.

Havocmaker

December 12th, 2012
8:34 am

Jay,
The next to the last sentence of the second full paragraph sounds kinda wierd. The sentence begins with “And because…..”

Then again it may be just me.

HM

Fred ™

December 12th, 2012
8:34 am

UnU: Is there someway I can contact you on your blog? I have questions about your recipes sometimes and this isn’t the place to ask as you are here in the mornings while the topics are new. Besides, I’m mad at Jay and am pouting for a while and don’t want to come here lol until my poutrage has run it’s course.

Do you email anyone here that could pass on your email to me if the blog thingie doesn’t work?

Oscar

December 12th, 2012
8:34 am

Stevie _ I forgot to mark that comment as sarcasm. Sorry.

Welcome to the Occupation

December 12th, 2012
8:35 am

There’s an interesting – unintended, no doubt – contrast that emerges when you watch old NFL clips and films, which of course the NFL itself cultivates as part of the fetishization of the product that is the NFL as a tradition in our culture. When you see games played back when Bradshaw and Swann and co. were playing the stadiums appear so humble in comparison to today. Despite the space age aspirations of the dome stadiums, there was something so working class about the various stadiums: Candlestick (just barely still in use), Three Rivers, Riverfront, and of course the old launching pad. To look at them today in old highlights is to be reminded of the class shift that has occurred since the 1970s in this society. Nowadays the working people are privileged to be allowed to enter these new cathedrals of privilege, with their executive boxes that are cordoned off for the fee-paying (mostly privileged organizations, businesses, with a few VIPs, of course), to watch their teams. While there they are further indoctrinated into the privilege of the upper class, whom they see behind the glass sipping their craft beers and hobnobbing. This reinforces a sense of class privilege, another great example of the win-win for the ruling class through the blending of PR and the configuration of public/private space in the age of untrammeled global capitalism.

Scott

December 12th, 2012
8:35 am

Arthur is buddies with Barack, enough said. NO new stadium.

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

December 12th, 2012
8:35 am

fedup

December 12th, 2012
8:28 am

Regardless of the topic, your comment is the obligatory response to anything posted here…fiscal cliff, unemployment, spending cuts, blah blah blah…got anything new to offer?

Not just singling you out….same goes for 80% of fringe lefties posting regularly here..

Oscar

December 12th, 2012
8:36 am

The next to the last sentence of the second full paragraph sounds kinda wierd. The sentence begins with “And because…..”

____

Also used the word planet in two consecutive sentences.

Tundra Dude

December 12th, 2012
8:37 am

Proponents of the deal argue that because the hotel/motel tax is paid by visitors to Atlanta, rather than by residents of metro Atlanta, it is somehow less of a tax.

Unlike an increase in sales tax, It is a tax (almost) no one will notice.

Peadawg

December 12th, 2012
8:37 am

A new stadium is fine…as long as Blank pays for it. There’s no need to drag taxpayers into this.

Welcome to the Occupation

December 12th, 2012
8:38 am

Scott: “Arthur is buddies with Barack, enough said. NO new stadium.”

Wait a minute. Arthur’s a socialist?

You better let somebody know about this, this is big news.

Simple Truths

December 12th, 2012
8:40 am

Wow. Jay didn’t default to his usual state and blame the Republicans. I foresee a follow up correction to his post….

But I agree with Jay on this. The stadium is a waste of money. When you’re in debt, you don’t buy new toys.

Fred ™

December 12th, 2012
8:40 am

Oh and although I’m “boycotting Jay and not reading his column (I know he’s heartbroken lol) if I DID happen to “glance” at this one AND the video, I would wonder why on a column about the Falcons stadium there was a video about Mayor Reed’s new support of same sex marriage…………

Anyone?

nathan's political arsonist

December 12th, 2012
8:40 am

I so hope the governor and legislature support this idiot idea, it’ll serve to rally the masses to unelect the crooks in November 2014

Morality?

December 12th, 2012
8:41 am

BORK the radical SUSAN RICE.

Brad Steel

December 12th, 2012
8:41 am

The Falcons and their ownership, both wealthy job creators, should be given the incentives needed that are essential to grow our economy with sports entertainment and the sale of beautiful red and memorabilia and tchotchkes.

If these taxes are given to government, it will be wasted on moochers and their healthcare. The brain injuries and long-term damage of playing a bloodsport will also help our economy. The private insurance policies (not government healthcare) is good for the economy. An additional benefit of the NFL is that players die young and thus are always producers and job creators.

Not elderly moochers.

Elections Have Consequences

December 12th, 2012
8:41 am

“because in ~10 years, the NFL is not going to be the going concern it is now.”

Progressives talking sports..almost as entertaining as the fiscal policy discussions that take place here…

Fred ™

December 12th, 2012
8:42 am

Scott

December 12th, 2012
8:35 am

Arthur is buddies with Barack, enough said. NO new stadium.
+++++++++++++++

Wow, here is a dude with his wires crossed lol.

USinUK - not very ladylike (and former Girl Scout)

December 12th, 2012
8:42 am

” Or is it tea time already over there.”

it’s ALWAYS tea time over here!!!

Fred – I’ll let Jay know that it’s good for us to swap e-mails :-)

GA Dawg

December 12th, 2012
8:43 am

The Falcons need to stay. The city has nothing worth seeing, accept the Braves, if the Falcons leave. Only suckers pay the hotel tax.

USinUK - not very ladylike (and former Girl Scout)

December 12th, 2012
8:43 am

Morality?

December 12th, 2012
8:44 am

Been waiting since 1966 for the Falcons to win a Super Bowl ….. instead of a new stadium – how about getting an offensive line that can block.

St Simons - aboriginal BOOTAKOOK 2014

December 12th, 2012
8:44 am

must have bread & circus for the masses.

well, strike the bread, and the medicaid

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

December 12th, 2012
8:44 am

Oscar

December 12th, 2012
8:34 am

Not sure which comment you are referring to…but I am generally pretty good at between the line reading..most of the time…regardless..no worries..

Fred ™

December 12th, 2012
8:45 am

UnU: If you must. I had hoped for someone else lol, he’s on my poo poo list right now. I’m not sending him a Christmas card this year so he may not give your addy to me.

Morality?

December 12th, 2012
8:45 am

The next new stadium should come the year AFTER th Falcons win a Super Bowl – and it should be moved NORTH of the ghetto.

N-GA (on the winning side 2 federal elections in a row!)

December 12th, 2012
8:46 am

Funny how conservatives attack government spending and bureaucratic waste, unless they stand to benefit from it. When the Hawks wanted a new arena the ATL city council was terrified of the voters so they decided to impose a tax on…you guessed it…people who don’t vote in ATL. They put a new 5% tax on rental cars. In a letter to the AJC I suggested that instead of more taxation without representation, the arena should be funded by revenues. Every ticket for every game, concert or other arena event should have a surcharge right there on the ticket. That method would have the people who attend arena events actually pay for the cost of the arena. The same could be done for a new stadium. Football games, monster truck events, etc.

julia

December 12th, 2012
8:46 am

Arthur needs to refill his Viagra prescription and find himself another trophy wife. If tax payers are forced to foot the bill to bolster his ego, and the elected officials go along with this, I hope people remember this well come election time. and NOBODY buy tickets to watch Blanks stupid team play in that facility.

Fred ™

December 12th, 2012
8:47 am

Morality?

December 12th, 2012
8:44 am

Been waiting since 1966 for the Falcons to win a Super Bowl ….. instead of a new stadium – how about getting an offensive line that can block.
+++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

LOL I could go two ways with this Morality. I could agree with you, or be “argumentative” and say, ‘How about a DEFENSIVE LINE that could stop the run!!!!!!!!!”

I think I’ll agree and say, “Yeah. And maybe a defense that could stop the run too. A billion dollars pays a lot of salary and over the cap penalty fees……………”

Stevie Ray..Clowns to the left and Jokers to the right..here I am...

December 12th, 2012
8:48 am

Morality?

December 12th, 2012
8:44 am

Thanks! I started going to those games in 66 as well as a 5 year old..for years, rain, blazing heat, snow, etcetera…we went out and watched them lose…the only thing worth looking forward to was the Saints game and the bi-annual brawl always started by Abramowitz and our DB Kenny Reeves (i think that was him..)

Morality?

December 12th, 2012
8:48 am

Arthur Blank and Obama have something in common – enact a program you can’t pay for and get the suckers to anti up the few cents they have left.

Thomas Heyward Jr

December 12th, 2012
8:49 am

Once you accept the premise that the State can coerce (at gunpoint) wealth from private individuals …………. to finance what someone “thinks” is a progressive idea………………..then Stadiums and/or Trolly-cars and/or Climate management or other such ridiculous schemes will always be the end result.
.
Get over it Bookman……….it’s for the collective.
.
Forward Soviet.

jd

December 12th, 2012
8:50 am

The only difference between R’s and D’s? R’s believe in corporate welfare/liberalism – D’s believe in individual welfare/liberalism.

I am surprised that no one has seen the seat license as a tax increase on the 1% who can afford the tickets!

Oscar

December 12th, 2012
8:51 am

how about getting an offensive line that can block.

____

Or better yet, a defense that can stop the run. Falcons have scored enough points to win, but give up to many to reach the Super Bowl.

Fred ™

December 12th, 2012
8:51 am

Moderate Line

December 12th, 2012
7:43 am

I have no problem with the article other than your assuming value has something to do with profit. That is not the case especially when it comes to sports teams. A good book to read is “Soccernomics” by Stefan Szymanski.
+++++++++++++++++++++++++

Really? So if Brother Artie sold the team for the reported 831 MILLION dollars he wouldn’t make a nice 286 MILLION DOLLAR PROFIT?

Welcome to the Occupation

December 12th, 2012
8:52 am

Brad Steel: “The Falcons and their ownership, both wealthy job creators, should be given the incentives needed that are essential to grow our economy with sports entertainment and the sale of beautiful red and memorabilia and tchotchkes”

Speaking of that, on a grim note, I’m reminded that last night while watching a news clip from the Oregon mall that was site of the shooting yesterday, there was a store called the “Duck Store” with Oregon Ducks paraphernalia, right next to an ambulance to care for the wounded.

A perfect fusion of images: late-state global capitalism.

DebbieDoRight - A Do Right Woman

December 12th, 2012
8:52 am

but i have asked in other forums, where is the cost benefit analysis?

To the taxpayer? Zero. To the Blank — infinite. He’ll OWN the stadium and everything to do with it — he’ll probably talk the SEC Championship people into moving into his stadium; not to mention all the other activities that are now held in the Dome will be held in his newly erected symbol to his manhood.

The diehard fans who LOVE the falcons and who’ve bought season tickets? Well, they probably wont’ be able to afford them anymore; unless they go into public office and get a job shafted the public for their own personal gain. Maybe they can become the next Gov. Deal.

Oscar

December 12th, 2012
8:53 am

Once you accept the premise that the State can coerce (at gunpoint) wealth from private individuals
_____

You can’t have a government without the ability to raise taxes to pay the expense to run it.

Fred ™

December 12th, 2012
8:53 am

Oscar

December 12th, 2012
8:51 am

how about getting an offensive line that can block.

____

Or better yet, a defense that can stop the run. Falcons have scored enough points to win, but give up to many to reach the Super Bowl.
++++++++++++++

Beat you to it pal lol.