Let me start off by congratulating the Highlands women’s basketball team on their first win of the season Tuesday night over Panhandle State 71-50. What a go, ladies.
Hey, another congrats to Richard Martinez, for accepting the Robertson football job. It is nice to see those who have paid their dues and are loyal to their school get these rewards.
Well, I have been thinking for a while now about the economy, as many have, and I have come to the conclusion that I do not care what the government tells me — we are in a recession. Except for the gas prices, it seems everything else is rising in price on a weekly basis. But here is what I think about all this mess.
We have all read about the so-called Big Three — General Motors, Ford and Dodge — unable to make payroll and on the verge of going belly-up, yet their corporate executives show up to Capitol Hill in chauffeur-driven limousines after arriving at the airport in company jets. Okay!
Well, I have another issue with the economy and perhaps a way to help.
Have you noticed how much money it costs to attend a pro event, NFL, NBA or MLB?
And I am sure you have seen the salaries these athletes are getting paid? According to Sports Illustrated or SI.com, Fortune 500 has released the Top 50 highest paid athletes. Tiger Woods leads the list making a mere $22.9 million per year. Okay, I can buy that because athletes in golf, tennis and race car driving must win to make the money.
So if that is the case, why can’t the NFL, NBA and MLB follow suit? What is my point to all this? The economy must not be hurting all that bad if owners can pay LeBron James $12.4 million per year and Kobe $19 mill per.
And who exactly pays these salaries? The fans. And how? Ticket prices and the rich who can afford Nicholson Seats or buy luxury boxes.
Doesn’t the economy apply to these entities?
So here is what I am thinking. The same way businesses pay their employees based on job production and now some companies asking their employees to take pay cuts, why not have these overpaid people do the same and bring down ticket prices and set an example for the blue-collar working person?
Here is another issue I have with pro owners. Stadiums and arenas are popping up everywhere. But here’s the catch. They want new houses for their teams, but they do not have the money to pay for them, so again, how do they get the funding to build these modern marvels? The fans.
And how? Raising taxes for one or passing bonds. The owner puts up so much for the stadium out of his pocket and then depends on the fans to kick in.
But wait, there is a catch. Since this new stadium costs — let’s say the new Yankee Stadium —$1.9 billion dollars, the fans and city have to kick in the point-nine billion and then after that the Yankees must raise ticket prices to pay for their end.
And what do most owners do if they do not get a new stadium? Leave and find a city to build a new park. You remember, “If you build it, he will come.” Those are just a few points about pro sports and the economy I wanted to bring up.
Before I depart, I want to wish all a Merry Christmas and also remind all that the Stu Clark Tournament is almost here. Stu Clark passes make a great Christmas gift or Christmas stocking stuffer. In speaking with Charlie Sandoval over at “The Spic” he informed that he has plenty to sell.
Oh, one last thing — a shout-out to all city employees and state employees who were up all night plowing, sanding and salting our roads. A special thanks to you all.
Tripp — out
Richard Tripp is a longtime local educator who writes sports stories for the Optic.