Big ups to our main man @21bam21 for sending us the classic video above.
Bad news just seems to be raining down on the OilersNation doesn’t it? First the lockout dominates our every waking thought as our beloved sport is put in jeopardy by the very same rich people who make their living from us enjoying our beloved sport. Then news that Randy Jackson isn’t leaving American Idol after all. Then news yesterday of an alarming exchange between Daryl Katz and City Council.
Let’s all take a deep breath and calm down. 99% of what we are witnessing is theatre designed to create fear among us average folk and force the government’s hand into publicly funding a greater share of a private-public partnership.
Read that again if you need to have it sink in: people who are experienced at this sort of thing are playing out drama designed to freak you out and make demands of government. There is no risk of the arena not being built and the Oilers leaving town.
Everyone involved knows that this arena is going to get built. Make no mistake. They just want someone else to pay for it and are willing to stir us all up to sway public opinion. This is a play that was designed a long time ago and has been very effective time and time again.
The City wants other governments to pay for this thing. Katz wants anyone but Katz Co to pay for it. The Feds don’t want to pay for anything for fear it will lead to multiple demands for federal money for arenas in other cities. Fans just want to line up to pay $200 for a ticket to watch Dubnyk and Khabibulin battle it out for King Shit of the Worst Goaltending tandem in the league.
MYTH: IF GOV’T AND KATZ DON’T HAVE THE $ ITS OVER
This is just utter nonsense. Companies and individuals with large amounts of capital would be all over putting in $100 million into funding the current gap. Think that a billionaire can’t raise 100 million at the drop of a hat? Please. We guarantee that the Katz Group is appoached on the regular by companies looking to participate in the project.
Hell we saw representatives from the AEG at the Art Gallery for the launch of the arena designs at many months ago. They make millions of dollars every year by funding arenas that can’t come up with the money from any other source. And they charge a boatload to do it. They have been hanging around since day one and aren’t the only company that would jump at the chance to fund a project of this size in an economy as hot as Alberta.
If you are interested in an arena at a reasonable price you will want to avoid private funds which will want a much higher percentage return on their money thus jacking up the cost considerably. You might not believe it – but it is absolute truth.
No entity can borrow money at a lower rate of interest than a government. A government owned arena or some sort of partnership is the cheapest if a government body borrows the money at government rates and makes a return on the money they borrow.
MYTH: THE OILERS COULD LEAVE TOWN
The US is going through a generational recession at the moment in case anyone cares to look. Cities in the US are experiencing double digit unemployment, social unrest and bleak prospects for the immediate future. If you want to line up the teams that need to be relocated the Oil are like 25th out of 30th.
One of the main reasons that the NHL is going to war over expenses (though they lack the PR sense to discuss it) is that the US economy is in dire trouble and there are several teams on life support. North American cities are splitting into haves and have nots and Professional Sports are exposed to a tremendous amount of risk as a result.
A strong market like Edmonton is not going to be disrupted no matter what nonsense is being thrown around in the media.
Read that again if you need to have it sink in: there is ZERO risk the Oilers are leaving town if they don’t get a new arena. Zero.
What we are witnessing here folks is theatre, pure and simple by people who are used to putting on this sort of play. Katz has more than the ability to put in the $100 million himself, or raise the capital with a couple well timed phone calls. Governments routinely split costs of publicly owned facilities like this and at the same time private money bangs these things out all over the world.
And the quickest way to get the deal done is turn up public pressure to 1000 until someone cracks and the thing gets built.
Don’t let politicians, rich people or the media scare you. It is all a show designed to get a rise out of us all and everyone freaking out and blogging, tweeting and screaming their heads off is playing right into their practiced plans. Whether it’s through a per ticket surcharge, $9 beers or tax increases you are paying your portion of the arena whether you like it or not. And odds are you won’t even notice.
It’s a similar situation over in the NHL-NHLPA war too. It’s a shame that the average joe is the only one put out by any of these battles and picks up the tab for the entire thing anyways.
But that’s a different conversation.
Mark this down: the arena will be funded and the first shovel will be in the ground in the Spring. This is all BS.