No, they don’t, argues Steve Greenhut, an astute commentator on the misuse of eminent domain and the author of a book on that subject. This time, his dispatch comes from Sacramento where a highly touted plan for a downtown basketball stadium has just come a cropper. Steve Greenhut, Sacramento Is Fresh Victim of Bad Stadium Deals, Bloomberg.com, April 16, 2012 – click here.
It seems that assorted city mothers cling to a childlike belief that stickig local taxpayers for the cost of building a stadium (and associated infrastructure) for billionaire owners of professional athletic teams will revive the city. But these deals mostly revive the contents of team owners’ wallets, not cities. Nonetheless, city hall denizens, like Charlie Brown who every fall believes that this time Lucy will hold the football for him, so he’ll be able to kick it and not fall on his little keester, believe that this time for sure the deal will do wonders for their city. It’s sort of like 17th century physicians who bled their patients and when those patients grew weaker, the bled ’em some more.