The Last Capitalist

A site dedicated to restoring individualism in the United States of America

Stop the “Outrage” in Sports Journalism

Posted by jemartynowski on July 3, 2008

OK, we get it.  Sports franchises are the devil.  The players are all in it for the money.  The owners are greedy.  All the sports writers out there keep complaining about sports as a business and how terrible it is.  Oddly enough, they work for some of the biggest sports businesses in the world in Fox Sports, ESPN, etc.  Well, I’m outraged at all of you ignorant writers out there.

Ian O’Connor of Fox Sports wrote an article about the NFL and their PSLs.  For those of you unfamiliar with these, they are Personal Seat Licenses which allow the owner of one to purchase season tickets in a designated area.  They are expensive and therefore price many people out of owning said season tickets.  Tough, I say. 

Look, these teams are not charities.  They do not own the team simply to make us happy.  They are businesses which must report to their stockholders.  By O’Connor and others’ theory, these owners shouldn’t get full value for their product.  Compare it to this example:  I can’t afford a Cadillac, but since I’m a big fan of Cadillacs, I think it’s unfair that I have to pay so much to get one.  I want a brand new Cadillac for $15,000.  Well, I’m out of luck.  See, there are enough people willing to pay more for a brand new one, so that’s what they’re going to sell it for.  Do I think it’s way too much for a car?  Sure, but that’s how free markets work.  I can’t have everything I want.

Let’s look at Ian O’Connor’s ignorant arguments individually:

“On any given Sunday, a dozen or so franchises are using the PSL the way a common burglar uses a crowbar to pry open a back door in the dead of night.”

This is so wrong I don’t even know where to start.  I guess I’ll just point out that a burglar doesn’t offer you a product for the money he takes, not to mention that the burglar also doesn’t give you the choice of whether or not to do business with him.  Again, it can’t be burglary when it’s a peaceable, voluntary transaction.  Using an example that makes not logical sense to make a point sound more intense makes you look like more of an idiot. 

“But consider the longtime Giants fan who builds a nice four-bedroom, two-and-a-half-bath home, only to find that the escalating costs of living makes it next to impossible for him to pay the mortgage.
That guy doesn’t get to knock on John Mara’s door and demand that the Giants owner cover his mortgage, pay his heat and electricity bills, and reimburse him for the gas used on the drive to East Rutherford. So what gives Mara the right to ask this fan who faithfully wore his LT jersey at every home game across the 17 years separating the Giants’ second Super Bowl title from their third to cover unforeseen construction costs?”

No, Ian, no.  When you use examples, also use logic.  First of all, Mara is not knocking on anyone’s door asking for handouts.  He is selling them a product and charging more for it.  Now, if you think it’s too much, don’t buy it.  Eventually he’ll have to lower the price if nobody is going.  If they do still go, then that’s just good business on his part:  offering a product at the price people are willing to pay.  If you can’t afford it, again, that doesn’t mean they have to sell it to you at the price you want.

“If that means pricing Texas Stadium lifers right out of the new place, hey, life’s tough.”

This is the kind of thinking that really annoys me.  It is full of assumptions.  First, O’Connor is assuming that he knows exactly which fans are “real” fans and which are not.  He assumes that people who are willing to pay for the expensive tickets are  not real fans, just some random rich people who had nothing to do on Sundays.  That’s some good prejudice, Ian.  Or is it that people don’t deserve to go to games because they have money and you are the almighty arbiter of who has too much money and who doesn’t have enough?  If that’s the case, you should run for the office of the President, seeing as that’s what we think we’re voting for any more.

Don’t think Mr. O’Connor is the lone culprit in inciting the crowds against business owners.  J. A. Adande of ESPN recently published an article about the Supersonics owners moving the teams in which he misses many of the same points.  However, that situation involves a lot more of a legal mess with leases and the like, but everyone forgets that the owner owns the team, hence the term “owner.” 

I understand the fans points on many of these, being from Cleveland and all, but we cannot forget our own faults in the team moving issues.  We voted to build a new stadium and arena for the Indians and Cavs, but turned down Modell when he wanted to replace the crap-hole we called Municipal Stadium.  He wasn’t innocent, but there were problems on both ends. 

All I’m saying is don’t buy into these spiteful rants from journalists just trying to turn a situation into something it’s not.  Ian O’Connor obviously has a difficult time understanding Capitalism, but still, he could do better.  Even though he’s a sports journalist, he should still practice some restraint, logic, and honesty.

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