Tuesday, October 11, 2005

The Welfare Sox of Illinois just take your breath away

Cubs fans, unite.

Unite in disgust and horror.

Unite in rooting for Angels.

And stop the Welfare Sox of Illinois from sucking away our spirit.

Eric Zorn had it right in his column (here), when he ruthlessly manipulated our nationalistic sentiments as effectively as Milosevic. He picked out the worst monsters on the South Side -- those that gave out free beers for every Marlins home run during the NLCS -- and made us believe that they personify the White Sox franchise.

Well, Crain's did a better job than Zorn at personifying the Welfare Sox. It is owner Jerry Reinsdorf, who will (along with the rest of the owners) make between $5 and $20 million more for the playoff run.

And how much with the State of Illinois make for each sold-out game at Comiskey Park -- I mean, U.S. Cellular Field (naming rights sold for the pittance of $15,000 per month which is about the cost of an expensive billboard on the Dan Ryan)?

Nothing.

Yes, the people of Illinois not only built a new stadium for the Welfare Sox of Illinois, not only continue to subsidize the White Sox with a $5,000,000 direct appropriation (page 16, as I read the budget of the Illinois Sports Facility Authority here), we've also been a terribly generous landlord.

We've decided not to charge them any rent for the playoffs!

It's free!

Go on, Jerry Reinsdorf! Use our stadium! Have fun! Make millions!

Meanwhile, we'll tear down public housing across the street because 'the state doesn't have any money.' And the Red Line on the El? Well, fares are going up, because 'the state doesn't have any money' for public transit this year. But for you guys? Go on: no charge. We'll just keep the hotel tax high -- among the highest in the country -- and wonder why we lose some convention business. Anything to keep the Welfare Sox happy.

Suck away on the public teat, Jerry Reinsdorf and the Welfare Sox owners. Suck away.

And Cubs fans? Be full of disdain and disgust for culture of dependency that infects the Welfare Sox.

But don't blame the fans. They were born with their attachment to a club with parasitic owners. Don't blame them. Just pity them.

Especially when their team loses.

But actually, I hope the Welfare Sox win. So that we -- their landlord -- can raise their rent.

21 comments:

Lazerlou said...

Super DJW,

I love the fire, the passion. It looks good on you. But damn, if you want to get angry about corporate welfare look at Boeing or any number of mega corporations that get tax breaks as a part of the race to the bottom. At least Reinsdorff stays on the south side in that shit neighborhood and employs Chicagoans. And I'm not sure claiming the high ground with teh Cubbies (my only true love) is the way to go. Instead of a shitty subsidized franchise in a cheap ass ugly stadium located in a slum, you have an overpriced franchise that benefits from monopolistic media practices, pathological loyalty and its status as a conveniently loctaed yuppie social scene.

Now that that has been said: F the whitesox. Go Cubs! Just wait till next year when we are healthy. Oh man!

Bill said...

You two guys are morons. Have fun at the world's largest gay bar...Wrigley Field!
Go White Sox!

Lazerlou said...

(Actually Wrigley would be a lot cooler if it was more like a gay bar and less like a big ten frat house)

Anonymous said...

Setting aside the issues of corporate welfare and management, it is disappointing to me that many parts of Chicago do not get as excited about the Sox as the Cubs.

Back to corporate welfare... there is a club that exists in big business, and the club is not fair or pro-market or based on competition. It is potentially reinforced by "elite" schools, as these schools benefit from colluding and perpetuating the club in order to raise money from alumni who control the club. A sign of clubiness is exec compensation that is more than 200x median household income (never used to be this way).

Now, is Reinsdorf a member of "the club"? I am not sure... At least he is an investor-owner-manager, vs. a manager of other people's money (Boeing execs).

This is why we need more corporate governance research and publishing, and the funding should be provided to public universities and not necessarily elite private schools.

BuckTurgidson said...

Blah blah blah...

BuckTurgidson said...

"...in that shit neighborhood..."

Um, Lou, that "shit neighborhood" has some of the fastest rising property values in the city.

Anonymous said...

Let's nor forget the welfare we give the racetracks. Sickening.

Just look at all the candidates Arlington Park and the Bidwells give to.

Really. Look at them.

Lazerlou said...

Uh um er, poo that is appreciating much faster than gold is still poo.

(Is not "poo" one of the great words of English?)

Anonymous said...

yeah, everyone's property increased. inflation increased. go figure- when your property inflates, you really do not make money because reinvestment costs: anyplace else you move also appreciated.

excessive focus on economic growth, and govt revenue growth, through gambling arguably is not great long-term. there have to be ways to grow the economy that are not as regressive as gambling.

Anonymous said...

imho: the numerous ceo's and execs at big corporations who get paid lavishly to work at companies founded by others and owned by pensions, mutual funds and life insurance is a little worse than reinsdorf. boeing execs would be an example of this.

how much does the boeing ceo make per year? If we had a state "ceo compensation fee" equal to 0.1% of annual revenues, and it applied to Boeing, this would generate $50,000,000 per year to fund education and research. not bad.

It would apply to Boeing if the corporation is more than x number of years old and pays the CEO more than y times the state's median household income (where x equals something like 20 or 30 years and where y equals 50 to 100 times). Annual compensation would be broadly defined to include salary, bonus, options, restricted stock, imputed income on perks, pension, heatlh and other-





eisner toward the end at Disney was also an example.

Anonymous said...

the other thing to consider is that Reinsdorf probably lost some money in prior years, and will in future years. Wasn't there a baseball strike the last time the Sox were good and looked headed to the playoffs?

So yeah, Reinsdorf and equity owners make some money now. But they probably lost some serious cash earlier and will int he future.

Whoever owns the Bulls has not had big cash profits equal to the Jordan days...

Anonymous said...

Regarding The Chicago Tribune and Tribune company:

How much does the Tribune CEO make?

How many world series or pro championships has the Tribune brought home to Chicago?

What are circulation trends at The Tribune?

My opinion is one can make an argument that the CEO and execs at the Tribune have earned $0 in bonus for the last year. Shareholder money would be better spent on acquiring new customers and improving quality of newspaper content. If the CEO does not like it, let him leave.

http://finance.yahoo.com/q/pr?s=TRB

Anonymous said...

http://www.cfo.com/article.cfm/4455128/c_4456100

Another potential reason to curtail bonuses for senior execs at the Tribune.

a potential $1 billion boo boo-

no biggy- this might mean higher debt at tribune, more interest expense, and less tax revenue...

Anonymous said...

First off Rent is only paid if the white sox sell over 2.5 million FULL PRICED tickets. That's right full priced tickets. Which doesn't ever happen because unlike gay mans park (Wrigley field) sox fans support the city by being the number 1 professional sports franchise in the city to offer free tickets to the Chicago park district something not available at gay mans park because they're too busy selling out to halsted street walkers. Second the tab for the playoffs including players salaries is picked up by major league baseball, which is why he will make money, then blow it on giving away seats having buy one get one seats, and having half priced seats something unheard of at gay mans park. Third you want to talk free rent Gay mans park is considered a land mark and has not paid a dime to the city for the last 30 years, which is funny because they haven't contributed shit to the city in any other way, so cubs fans unite and cheer against the sox it will make winning the world series that much more enjoyable. GO SOX!!!! CUBS SUCK!!!

Anonymous said...

Wow! White Sox fan reacts with overwhelming force. You are, indeed, a true White Sox fan. I have to admit when I read the article, I thought this guy is a hater but he make salient points with regard to corporate welfare. Perhaps his argument should be examined before I deconstruct his arguement as a White Sox fan. In short, I did not want to take him on with a reply.

After all, this guy is a lawyer therefore it should follow that his rebuttal is already prepackaged. The White Sox Fan,however, rejects his critique out of hand while personalizing the debate with references to homosexuality. But the fan covers himself in a most clever way with idea that the White Sox give tickets to the Chicago park district, in other words disadvantaged children. Thus, the Chicago White Sox are better corporate citizens than the Chicago Cubs- 10 million dollar state and city subsidy notwithstanding.

However,Dan Johnson-Weinberger could easily quip and say that the White Sox threaten to leave town every time revunue sinks as evidence through the late 80's and early 90's. In fact, the new Comiskey Park was merely an inducement to remain in Chicago. Therefore, the White Sox are not loyal to Chicago merely the bottom line and the largesse which extends from the public trust.

Dan Johnson-Weinberger makes that arguement in a rather akward way by injecting the Cubs into the debate he bastardizing the debate over the allocation of the public trust to a mere two dollar a pitcher debate in a smoke filled bar.

In truth, the Cubs and White Sox add to Chicago. Chicago is infact, a international hub city which depends on tourist spending domestic and foriegn along the Mag Mile during the Winter and liberal spending at our festivals and ballparks during the summer. It is important to point out that tourist spending breaks almost 3 to 1 for the Cubs. Not to mention these people drink a shit load at our bars.

On the other hand, one could argue that the White Sox have done a better job of holding on to Chicago culture. I challenge anyone check out a Cubs and Sox game days apart from one another. At the Sox, game you will hear that distinct Chicago accent more at a 5 to 1 rate. In fact, you will feel as if the SUPER FANS (saturday night live) are sitting right next to you. Picture this, middle aged guy dripping mustard all over his International Brotherhood of Teamsters jacket on a fall day.

Now, for the Cubs game. The guy sitting next to you is an Investment Banker at Goldman Sacs, 27 years old and a recent graduate from some obsure school in Texas and his girlfriend some confused artist from Maine waiting for this illegal alien to bring the change from their tenth beer respectively. Now that is a Cubs game - diverse as a bowl of marshmellows.

In short as a Baseball fan, I root for the White Sox. But as a fan of Sex with dumb girls I will take in a Cubs game gladly. Now the rest of the story, when the girl from Maine recieved her change and her Investment Banker boyfriend turned his head, she slipped me her phone number at a Thursday day game and I nailed her on the Friday "Girls only night out". Go CUBS! NO GO BHP! GO CHAMPS!

Anonymous said...

Wow! White Sox fan reacts with overwhelming force. You are, indeed, a true White Sox fan. I have to admit when I read the article, I thought this guy is a hater but he make salient points with regard to corporate welfare. Perhaps his argument should be examined before I deconstruct his argument as a White Sox fan. In short, I did not want to take him on with a reply.

After all, this guy is a lawyer therefore it should follow that his rebuttal is already prepackaged. The White Sox Fan, however, rejects his critique out of hand while personalizing the debate with references to homosexuality. But the fan covers himself in a most clever way with idea that the White Sox give tickets to the Chicago park district, in other words disadvantaged children. Thus, the Chicago White Sox are better corporate citizens than the Chicago Cubs- 10 million dollar state and city subsidy notwithstanding.

However, Dan Johnson-Weinberger could easily quip and say that the White Sox threaten to leave town every time revenue sinks as evidence through the late 80's and early 90's. In fact, the new Comiskey Park was merely an inducement to remain in Chicago. Therefore, the White Sox are not loyal to Chicago merely the bottom line and the largesse which extends from the public trust.

Dan Johnson-Weinberger makes that argument in a rather awkward way by injecting the Cubs into the debate he bastardizing the debate over the allocation of the public trust to a mere two dollar a pitcher debate in a smoke filled bar.

In truth, the Cubs and White Sox add to Chicago. Chicago is infact, a international hub city which depends on tourist spending domestic and foreign along the Mag Mile during the Winter and liberal spending at our festivals and ballparks during the summer. It is important to point out that tourist spending breaks almost 3 to 1 for the Cubs. Not to mention these people drink a shit load at our bars.

On the other hand, one could argue that the White Sox have done a better job of holding on to Chicago culture. I challenge anyone check out a Cubs and Sox game days apart from one another. At the Sox, game you will hear that distinct Chicago accent more at a 5 to 1 rate. In fact, you will feel as if the SUPER FANS (Saturday night live) are sitting right next to you. Picture this, middle aged guy dripping mustard all over his International Brotherhood of Teamsters jacket on a fall day.

Now, for the Cubs game. The guy sitting next to you is an Investment Banker at Goldman Sacs, 27 years old and a recent graduate from some obscure school in Texas and his girlfriend some confused artist from Maine waiting for this illegal alien to bring the change from their tenth beer respectively. Now that is a Cubs game - diverse as a bowl of marshmallows.

In short as a Baseball fan, I root for the White Sox. But as a fan of Sex with dumb girls I will take in a Cubs game gladly. Now the rest of the story, when the girl from Maine recieved her change and her Investment Banker boyfriend turned his head, she slipped me

Anonymous said...

Wow! White Sox fan reacts with overwhelming force. You are, indeed, a true White Sox fan. I have to admit when I read the article, I thought this guy is a hater but he make salient points with regard to corporate welfare. Perhaps his argument should be examined before I deconstruct his argument as a White Sox fan. In short, I did not want to take him on with a reply.

After all, this guy is a lawyer therefore it should follow that his rebuttal is already prepackaged. The White Sox Fan, however, rejects his critique out of hand while personalizing the debate with references to homosexuality. But the fan covers himself in a most clever way with idea that the White Sox give tickets to the Chicago park district, in other words disadvantaged children. Thus, the Chicago White Sox are better corporate citizens than the Chicago Cubs- 10 million dollar state and city subsidy notwithstanding.

However, Dan Johnson-Weinberger could easily quip and say that the White Sox threaten to leave town every time revenue sinks as evidence through the late 80's and early 90's. In fact, the new Comiskey Park was merely an inducement to remain in Chicago. Therefore, the White Sox are not loyal to Chicago merely the bottom line and the largesse which extends from the public trust.

Dan Johnson-Weinberger makes that argument in a rather awkward way by injecting the Cubs into the debate he bastardizing the debate over the allocation of the public trust to a mere two dollar a pitcher debate in a smoke filled bar.

In truth, the Cubs and White Sox add to Chicago. Chicago is in fact, an international hub city which depends on tourist spending domestic and foreign along the Mag Mile during the winter and liberal spending at our festivals and ballparks during the summer. It is important to point out that tourist spending breaks almost 3 to 1 for the Cubs. Not to mention these people drink a shit load at our bars.

On the other hand, one could argue that the White Sox have done a better job of holding on to Chicago culture. I challenge anyone check out a Cubs and Sox game days apart from one another. At the Sox, game you will hear that distinct Chicago accent more at a 5 to 1 rate. In fact, you will feel as if the SUPER FANS (Saturday night live) are sitting right next to you. Picture this, middle aged guy dripping mustard all over his International Brotherhood of Teamsters jacket on a fall day.

Now, for the Cubs game. The guy sitting next to you is an Investment Banker at Goldman Sacs, 27 years old and a recent graduate from some obscure school in Texas and his girlfriend some confused artist from Maine waiting for this illegal alien to bring the change from their tenth beer respectively. Now that is a Cubs game - diverse as a bowl of marshmallows.

In short as a Baseball fan, I root for the White Sox. But as a fan of Sex with dumb girls I will take in a Cubs game gladly. Now the rest of the story, when the girl from Maine recieved her change and her Investment Banker boyfriend turned his head, she slipped me her phone number at a Thursday day game and I nailed her on the Friday "Girls only night out". Go CUBS! NO GO BHP! GO CHAMPS!

Anonymous said...

now if we can get visitors to drink Chicago and IL microbrew we will be very set-

Anonymous said...

hundreds of millions of negative equity in the balance sheet?

(p15 in your link)

yikes, the Sox are going to need to win for a long time, and people are going to need to drink a lot of beer and soda-

Anonymous said...

As a Sox fan, I concur fully in the notion that there's no reason to subsidize sports teams. Based on one study I've seen, the local economy gets, for example, less benefit from an entire Bears season than it does from one good show (like the recent Toulouse-Lautrec) at the Art Institute.

Moreover, cities that subsidize sports stadia always seem to me to be the ones that are third-rate, and where the people know it, and think that a sports team with a new statdium somehow makes their city less appalling (when in fact decent public transportation, or restaurants that don't suck might actually do so). Houston springs right to mind in this regard. Chicago isn't such a place; if the White Sox or Bears moved next week, the Diamondbacks, Jaguars, Marlins, or whoever would be hear would be here in a heartbeat.

That said, I've been to new Comiskey Park a number of times, and making Eddie and Jerry (certainly far from the most egregious sports owners in town) pay very much rent on that graceless, butt-ugly place would be at least a little bit wrong.

Anonymous said...

"if the White Sox or Bears moved next week, the Diamondbacks, Jaguars, Marlins, or whoever would be hear would be here in a heartbeat."

Sure. By the way, who's playing QB for the Los Angeles...ah...um...uh...never mind.