Let’s have a look at the other epic tale that has been eclipsed in the headlines by Tom Brady’s impressive comeback. Though I have no doubt that Mr. Brady starting the Season with a 4 game suspension and finishing it with an impressive 2nd half rally in the Super Bowl will be one epic tale in the history of Football, there is another one this season which points out the glaring double standard of the large scale entitlement, corruption, and monopolistic privilege which injures our nation so much!
I am speaking of course of the genesis of the Las Vegas Raiders.
Before we begin, let me very upfront. My favorite Football team is the Denver Broncos, the hated rivals of the soon to be Las Vegas Raiders. When you go to see a game at Mile High Stadium there is also the embodiment of large scale entitlement, corruption, and monopolistic privilege clearly present for all to see. One of America’s most hated monopolies- Comcast, sits just outside of he stadium in plain sight. As much as I enjoy the spectacle of a sporting event, its presence there disgusts me. I do not have any illusions that different rules somehow apply to Pat Bowen and the Broncos.
But, I live in Northern Nevada and the Oakland Raiders were practically the Home Team. So, the recent loss of the Raiders to Las Vegas is hurtful enough to those around me who are my cherished AFC West Division rivals in the Fall. However, it is the method of this betrayal and what it says about how tax money is handed out, both at the State and Federal level that I wish to discuss. I feel it is instructional regarding the double standard through which political insiders continue to view the world. I also believe that it warrants a number of filters that political speech must be subject to for the sake of the mental defense of the taxpaying citizen and the future of the nation in general.
Let me start with a touch of irony and ask a hypothetical question.
What is, according to political Conventional Wisdom, Socialism and what is not Socialism? More specifically, I will offer some examples of this Conventional Wisdom to prove my point about how filters for the more inane talking points coming from the DC elitists currently occupying the White House and Congress are warranted. Not only is a filter warranted but a small inspection of said claims of Conventional Wisdom fail under even light scrutiny.
If Nevada schools (struggling at 49th in the nation in regard to graduation, 43rd in the nation regarding teen pregnancy, 44th in the nation regarding SAT scores) were to receive a boost in funds from renegotiating the tax rate Mining corporations pay in Nevada(who currently enjoy a sweetheart of a deal- getting to permanently extract resources and pay 1.187% tax) would that be considered an example of Socialism? If the amount Mining corporations pay were to double to 2.374% and benefit the struggling education system giving another $104 million to Nevada’s struggling schools, is it fair to label that Socialism?
However, for the Nevada State Legislature to meet in special session so that a $750 million dollar package (in order to bring the Oakland Raiders to Las Vegas) could be upgraded to a 1.1 Billion dollar package and directly benefit Casino mogul and Republican donor Sheldon Adelson, which is what happened, would that handout of public money be considered an example of Socialism?
I think now, gentle reader, that you can see the nature of the filter which I am proposing. Keep in mind, that according to elitist Conventional Wisdom, to invoke and advocate Socialism, to suggest even for a second that public money be spent to directly by the government to influence the well being of the people who worked hard and paid the taxes, is the equal of the worst abuses of Stalin and Mao. It’s as simple as good guy capitalists vs bad guy communists. Which is why we are allied with successful Socialist economies the world over(<-SARCASM!).
So, because Socialism is evil incarnate, we must rely on the rugged individualism of the bold entrepreneur. Because, according to the oft quoted but seldom read Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, “a Rising Tide lifts all boats”. Which is why Adelson and Raiders owner Mark Davis need $1.1 billion dollars of taxpayer money at a time when the state was facing a $400 million dollar shortfall. It’s not like Mr. Adelson has the resources to pay for this himself, he only has 32 billion(<-SARCASM!)!
That money needs to go to things like the billboard that said-
Stadium, Jobs & Growth
Hold your local politicians ACCOUNTABLE!
Avoid Personal and Regional Issues and Nevada wins!
Which was visible to all those going from the airport to the Carson City Capitol Building. Especially the local politicians going to vote on the proposal .
On another note, the Market (and the prospect of taking a loss)is supposed to hold decision makers accountable. If one were to implement a system where decisions regarding billions of dollars were made and the Market’s accountability was not present due to the actions of the Government, would that be considered Socialism?
Consider that the Raiders organization still has not repaid the city of Oakland for the Bond Issue/Stadium upgrades that were done to lure the Raiders back to Oakland from Los Angeles. Consider that the business plan submitted to Nevada calls for, per Stanford Economist Roger Noll, 22,500 tickets every single game (in a 65,000 seat Stadium) to be sold to fans of the Visiting team. 1/3 of the anticipated fan base is supposed to come from tourists. No NFL team comes anywhere hear that . Per Professor Noll, “You take away all that, you take away 75% of the benefit of the Stadium!”
And, of course, when (not IF but WHEN) the Market holds these decision makers to account for their horrendous grasp of math, you can expect Adelson and Davis to come to the taxpayer with their hand out expecting more taxpayer money, all the while invoking “jobs” and “growth”.
Regarding these appeals to “jobs” (on both the State and Federal level) that keep winding up as handouts to billionaires, I must quote Inigo Montoya in the Princess Bride-
“You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means”
I’m pretty sure that the 2nd definition of the word jobs isn’t “handouts of public money to billionaires” when you look in the dictionary.
To look on those numbers (and numbers akin to those on the Federal level), and to regurgitate nonsense about Jobs and Growth is to engage in political insider Conventional Wisdom and cognitive dissonance on an epic scale. To pretend that politicians who look over with numbers like that somehow know what they are doing, but someone like Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren are clueless and idealistic is to engage in a double standard that is a cancer on the political discourse in this country.
So, both at the State and Federal level, some common sense filters are in order.
FILTER #1-Is rhetoric regarding fiscal responsibility and financial solvency applied equally across the board. Example: Does the Politician who was wrapping himself in the flag advocating War/Handouts to Defense Contractors at the Expense of our Soldiers, feel the same way when it is time to spend money on the people he supposedly represents? Why did the priority become fiscal responsibility and financial solvency when the time comes to do something about medical bankruptcies? Or educate a population so we are technically competitive as a nation? Or repair infrastructure?
FILTER #2- Does the “Rising Tide” promised by Adam Smith (and politicians cynically manipulating the word “jobs”) genuinely lift all boats? Or does it only lift some privileged and entitled boats whom are greasing the wheels of power? To repeat, the $1.1 Billion handout of taxpayer money to Sheldon Adelson and Mark Davis has a business plan that relies on more NFL tickets being bought by visitors than any other team in pro sports history. And if Las Vegas tourists don’t buy NFL tickets in record numbers, then the economic benefits of that handout don’t materialize. But Adelson and Davis still get to keep the money and sit in the owner’s box at games.
FILTER #3- Is there a proven history of the above-mentioned dishonesty? If so, their credibility should be considered nil! Like I mentioned at the outset, this revolting double standard is not limited to Sheldon Adelson and Mark Davis. We find the deliberate embracing of this glaring double standard that empowers large-scale entitlement, corruption, and monopolistic privilege on a dangerous level when looking at the Federal Government right now as well!
If we were to apply these filters to the current resident of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, we find a Status Quo completely dependent on a dangerous and glaring double standard!
The current Washington Elitist Status Quo advocated Trump because Hillary was “ in Wall Street’s pocket”. However, Trump plans to repeal Dodd-Frank and eliminate the Fiduciary Rule, letting Wall Street return to its pre -2008 ways.
The current Washington Elitist Status Quo advocated Trump because Hillary“couldn’t be trusted because of her E-mail scandal”. However, a blind eye is being turned to Trump using his own private e-mail server.
The current Washington Elitist Status Quo advocated Trump because Hillary was “Pay for Play”. However Trump has refused to wall off his business from his administration and personally profits off of payments from foreign governments.
The current Washington Elitist Status Quo advocated Trump because Hillary was in charge at the time of the Benghazi massacre. However Trump ordered a raid in Yemen without adequate intel (while tweeting about “fake news”) and Americans died as a result.
The double standard embraced by the elitist Reactionaries in power and the Inside the Beltway lackeys who enable them goes beyond Football Stadiums and billion dollar handouts at the State level. It is a threat to our Constitution, our Biosphere, our Military, and our Future as a nation!
The protestors are right. And those outraged at Trump should not be discouraged by the 2016 election results and the series of brain-dead Executive Orders that have been forthcoming over Trump’s first month. After all, look at how Tom Brady started the 2016 season and how he finished it!Tweet
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