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KingPriest2
10-30-2004, 05:09 PM
Like living in big city? Then pay up

JOE POSNANSKI


Membership isn't free. That's what those street signs all over Kansas City should say. Right now, the signs say “Think Big,” and that's a nice notion. It doesn't mean anything, but it's a nice notion.

“Why should I vote for this Bistate II tax?” “Think big!” “OK, I'm thinking big! I'm thinking huge! I'm thinking about Yao Ming! Now, why should I vote for Bistate again?”

The point of this campaign, to me, is not big thinking. It's not about economics. No, the point is that membership isn't free. Kansas City is a major-league city. Most of us like living in a major-league city. It doesn't matter if you like baseball or football or go to the opera; major league is something that permeates our daily lives. We wake up and, we're in Kansas City, major-league town. Got a major-league baseball team. Got a pro football team. Got a good symphony, high-quality ballet, world-class art museum. Here we are!

Typical conversation on a plane: “Where are you from?” “Kansas City.”

“Yeah? When are the Chiefs going to turn it around?”

Yes, it's good being major league. One thing, though: It isn't free. Sooner or later, the bill comes due, and you have to decide just how important it is to be a member of the club, the major-league city club, the exclusive club that includes St. Louis and Denver and Cincinnati and Boston, but not Tulsa and Louisville and Providence and Richmond.

There is nothing wrong with that second group of cities — they are all, in fact, lovely places. But they are not major league. And we are. I've lived in cities without major-league sports and major-league arts. The whole feel of the town is different. You root for other cities' teams. You drive a few hours to see a “real show.” It's not the same.

And that, to me, is what Bistate II is about. Sure, I know its many flaws. On television one day, I caught a guy giving a 60-second commentary on why people should vote for the quarter-cent sales tax that will refurbish both Arrowhead and Kauffman Stadium (locking in both teams for more than 25 years) and give about $300 million to support the arts.

He spent the first 55 seconds absolutely ripping every single aspect of the deal.

And in the last five seconds, he said: “But we support it anyway.”

That wasn't too persuasive. Neither was the late announcement that with the passing of Bistate II, Kansas City might actually get a Super Bowl, you know, that is, if more than half the owners lose their minds and vote for playing the Super Bowl where it might be minus-10 degrees outside. I wouldn't bet on that Super Bowl thing.

But a Super Bowl is not the reason to vote yes on County Question One. The reason is to stay in the major-league club. The Royals need this. They simply can't survive in this Kauffman Stadium. They need a stadium that can give them more money. Sure, you can yell out all sorts of unrealistic solutions (“Let David Glass pay for it,” or “Let's vote this down and build a brand-new stadium downtown” or “Why can't they just dig in the parking lot for oil?”). But here in Realityville, fixing Kauffman Stadium is still the smartest, easiest and least expensive option.

(Incidentally, I've heard people say, “Oh, what's the difference, even with a new stadium the Royals can't compete.” This is just wrong. True, the Royals cannot compete financially with the Yankees and Red Sox. But they don't have to. They are in a division with Minnesota, Detroit, Cleveland and Chicago — these are the teams the Royals compete with. In this division, a few million dollars per year would go a long, long way).

As for the Chiefs, well, I've heard all the complaints about how they don't need what the Royals are getting, they could kick in more money, they are making tens of millions per year, etc. I do know that I lived in a place where the city decided to build a new stadium for the unpopular and struggling baseball team, but ignored the very popular and successful football team (with its very popular and successful owner). Everybody assumed the Cleveland Browns would be happy in their old stadium.

Browns owner Art Modell was actually not happy. And soon the Cleveland Browns became the Baltimore Ravens.

Finally, vote for Bistate II, and the new performing arts center will be built, which is a pretty good deal for everybody.

Perfect? Far from it. But membership isn't free. Vote yes for Bistate II — it will only cost you 10 cents per day, the “Think Big” people boast — and you are guaranteeing that we won't have to root for the St. Louis Cardinals all summer or travel to Denver to see a world-class performer or have quiet Sundays in Kansas City.

I don't know how to put a price on that. For me it's worth the dime a day

2bikemike
10-30-2004, 05:16 PM
That settles it I am voting for the Bi-State II tax.

KingPriest2
10-30-2004, 05:19 PM
That settles it I am voting for the Bi-State II tax.

:hmmm:

2bikemike
10-30-2004, 05:21 PM
:hmmm:

Whaaat?

KingPriest2
10-30-2004, 05:24 PM
Whaaat?


I am still undecided.

2bikemike
10-30-2004, 05:33 PM
I am still undecided.

Well I am a registered Republican in the State of Calif. So I am not really allowed to vote in Mo.

Bowser
10-30-2004, 06:20 PM
Well I am a registered Republican in the State of Calif. So I am not really allowed to vote in Mo.

I thought all repubs got to do as they wished............






:p

2bikemike
10-30-2004, 06:24 PM
I thought all repubs got to do as they wished............






:p


Nah its the Dems that get to vote multiple locals.