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Throwback Thmid-Thmarch: Mark Dayton

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NOTES: This column originally appeared on April 15, 2004. The Victory Sports plan failed very quickly. Mark Dayton, on the other hand, went on to become Minnesota's governor, where he launched yet another shitty deal for our second publicly funded new stadium since I started this column. Since this column aired, the decline in public infrastructure spending has led me to change my opinion on stadiums from "fuck no" to "at least it's something", but it's not a position I'm happy with.

Memo to Mark Dayton: YOU ARE DUMB.

You are a United States Senator. You are one of one hundred people who form the upper house of the federal government's legislative branch. There is a war on. So maybe you have better things to do in your spare time than fuck around trying to get baseball games on TV.

I mean, far be it from me to question a senator's priorities. Wait. Actually, VERY CLOSE be it to me. It's right here, next to the Vanilla Coke. Question a senator's priorities when he's spending time pandering to whiny fantards and business interests over goddamn baseball.

It's bad enough that your local ilk have to run around every single year trying to get the public to pay for shiny new stadiums. After all, if we don't have shiny stadiums, the teams will leave, and then, in the unlikely event that any of them win a national championship, some OTHER city will have to deal with rioting fans setting overturned cars on fire. These are OUR TEAMS, dammit. And if we don't spend tax money on tripling the capacity of luxury skyboxes, our cars will remain vertical and flame-free.

A city without flaming upside down cars simply isn't worth living in, after all. It provides variety. Interest. Flickering light effects. We live in the midwest, for fuck's sake. We can't afford to be any MORE boring, or we'll all fall asleep and crash our cars, flipping them over and setting them on fire. Obviously, stadium opponents would rather spend money on the poor and let OCCUPIED cars burn, instead of spending money on stadiums and letting PARKED cars burn.

Of course, if we do end up with a new baseball stadium, nobody's gonna fucking go and buy tickets. Not if Mark Dayton has his way. Because right now, you can't see the games on TV for free. The team took all the games and is trying to start a fledgling cable network to air them on. Victory Sports Network. Since it's Minnesota, it really should have been called Victory Between Forty And Eighty Percent Of The Time On Average Network, but they couldn't make that work as a logo. Anyway, these are the owners of sports teams, and as such, are completely unsympathetic individuals, so fuck them.

The cable and satellite companies don't want to shell out for it, though. This is because they are huge multinational corporations who do not have the time or the energy to make piddly little deals that only involve a single, non-New-York major metropolitan area. Because they are cable and satellite companies they are, as such, completely unsympathetic individuals, so fuck them too.

In an ideal, free-market world, these two behemoths would fight it out amongst themselves until it worked out or it didn't. But this is America, where the free market only counts if you want to pump mercury into the rivers or don't want people to eat while they're between jobs. The free market can't possibly be used to manage something as vital to the national interest as televised baseball games. Those of you outside Minneapolis may be laughing, but you haven't heard the news coverage. People are DISTRAUGHT that they can't watch the home team play. It's a travesty, a tragedy, and three to four other words that start with TRA and end in Y.

And what bigger voting bloc is there than people with multicolored caps and fucked-up priorities? I can't think of one. And neither can Senator Dayton, who has set up closed-door non-negotiation negotiation sessions (because they are somehow legally barred from negotiating). He's doing this "on behalf of those thousands of Minnesota Twins fans", and because he "want(s) the Twins on television, soon."

Well, good for you. While you're at it, I'd love to see more Angel, Firefly, and Home Movies. You're my senator. I voted for your sorry ass. So get cracking. And while you're at it, get The Swan canceled. Let me know if I need to wear a cap before you listen to me.

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