And that brings me to my gripe with the Seattle Times’ NO endorsement. They conclude by stating: “The SuperSonics might not be delivering like a 30-year bond, but the team still has a positive impact on businesses.”
Says who? Even chamber of commerce folks who spoke to our edit board didn’t peddle that whopper. […] I’ve been reporting on this damn issue for several years now. And several recent studies, one by the University of Minnesota, one by the Lincoln Insititute, one by the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City and another by the CATO Institute found that, if anything, professional sports teams may actually hurt local economies. The CATO study, for example, debunks industry claims that sports teams generate new consumer spending (they actually just suck up existing discretionary spending), and concludes, “the net economic impact [is] a reduction in real per-capita income over the entire metropolitan area.”
[…] The economic impact argument would be a convincing and compelling one…if it were true. It’s irresponsible of the Seattle Times to haul it out without proving it…or at least citing the source.
Um, Josh… you’ve missed the obvious source… Frank Blethen’s accountants. The business the team has the most positive impact on is the Seattle Times.
You don’t think the average reader slaps down their change for the Times’ op/ed section, do you? It’s scandal and sports that sells the dailies, and without the Sonics and the Storm, there’d be nothing to drive sales during our long, rainy winter. And just think of the additional advertising dollars a championship drive would rake in… should there ever be another Sonics championship drive.
Too cynical an analysis? How could anyone be anything but cynical about the Times’ editorial motives in the context of their incessant, dishonest shilling for estate tax repeal? Remember, this is the same paper that argued against the estate tax by unfavorably comparing our state’s tax structure to that of Sweden.
To the Times, I-91 isn’t about the Sonics or the fans or the business community… it’s about the Times.