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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on March 26, 2013 5:45 PM. The previous post in this blog was Car hater echo chamber working well. The next post in this blog is Tell it like it is. Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.

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Tuesday, March 26, 2013

What Greece and the Portland Beavers have in common

They were both wrecked by the Paulson family.

Comments (14)

Key phrase: "Fictional exchange rates."

The most frustrating part of the derivatives debacle behind the collapse of the world economy, is that it did not have to happen. Human beings on planet earth have never faced a shortage of problems - real tough issues that we have to fight through just to survive. So to see these weasels like Henry Paulson going so far out of their way to manufacture catastrophic problems that need not have happened, is breathtaking.

Can't we wait for a killer asteroid or a plague? Do we have to do it to ourselves just because the bankers wanted to turn the financial security of the world into a casino?

So what was the ultimate goal here? It looks like the whole thing was driven essentially by the greed of a few thousand financial workers who wanted big bonuses. That's it.

We could have had them split 15 trillion dollars in exchange for leaving the markets alone, and we'd be better off. Sure, there are some bigger themes - New World Order stuff - but when it comes down to it, the reason for the financial exposure of derivatives was to generate bonuses for Wall Street workers and their counterparts in London and elsewhere.

Unnecessary problems are like unnecessary wars. They're the worst kinds of crimes, partly because of their scope, but mostly because they didn't have to happen.

Beavs were wrecked by nobody buying tickets. (And I partially blame the city and its jihad against parking for this)

They did better under previous owners than they did under Little Lord Paulson. He lost interest quickly.

I'm sure the Timber Army will boycott the Timber games, being so political righteous and all.

And it's going to get worse:

Greek Debt Crisis: How Goldman Sachs Helped Greece to Mask its True Debt By Beat Balzli, Der Spiegel Online

Goldman Sachs helped the Greek government to mask the true extent of its deficit with the help of a derivatives deal that legally circumvented the EU Maastricht deficit rules. At some point the so-called cross currency swaps will mature, and swell the country's already bloated deficit.
http://www.spiegel.de/international/europe/greek-debt-crisis-how-goldman-sachs-helped-greece-to-mask-its-true-debt-a-676634.html

By definition, currency swaps are instruments that have different from prevailing (i.e., ficticious) exchange rates or there is nothing to swap (and there would be no way to hedge against currency fluctuations). Clearly, there should be rules requiring disclosure of swaps held and the potential liability underlying the swaps by the party holding the swaps. Blame the accountants.

Greece lied about its debt, its expenditures, its tax revenues, its economy -- virtually every metric used to judge its conformance with Eurozone requirements. The targets for criticism, prosecution and disdain are the lying thieving scabs who run the government and their political supporters.

Succinctly said, Bill.

Oh well - at least here in Reno we have AAA Baseball; and our team won the national AAA Title at that!

Previous owners had one huge advantage, and that was the city allowed a baseball ticket to be an all-day transit pass. That was revoked, however, by the time he purchased the team.

Paulson managed to get the AAA All-Star weekend in Portland and had an award winning promotions team, but the fans simply weren't willing to come and sit in the rain for four hours after having endured a huge hassle just to get to the stadium.

The fanbase was all in the 'burbs, but they don't want to multiply their travel times by a factor of four to attend a minor league baseball game, and the city wasn't about to let anyone build a parking garage around the stadium. (although it amuses me that the Mac Club and its hoity toity members seem to have an inside track on buying a chunk of Lincoln to turn into a parking garage for *them*)

Whenever I ask the people who are mad about AAA baseball leaving how many games they had gone to in the last five years, I never had someone average more than 1 per year. I did my part with a season ticket package from 2000 onward, and after the first two or three years, the crowds were already dwindling.

Find a place to build a stadium (where you can build parking!) and you'll get good crowds. Until then, I guess it's the Hops.

Baseball was a symbol of establishment. Portland became anti baseball before Paulson or WEIRD.

When you look at the economics of minor league baseball, don't forget the Beavers were a farm team of the San Diego Padres, so I think that means the salaries, bonuses and scouting costs were picked up by the MLB team.

I'm going on hazy memories here of the great dual-use stadium debate, but I seem to remember that minor league baseball teams with lots of fans can do really well financially - especially if they stick their home cities with a one-sided stadium deal - while teams like the Beavers relied more on their affiliation with a major league club to keep going.

Of course, this is exactly why Jack will be irreplaceable - economics is not my strongest subject.

The bottom line is that AAA baseball is a bad product. A Triple-A team churns through about 40-45 players during a season. There's no continuity, no genuine attempt to win. Class A ball always does well here because the season doesn't start until summer, so you're not playing 25 percent of your season on chilly nights when there's an NBA playoff game on.

They did better under previous owners...

Which owners are you talking about? Convicted felon Abe Alizadeh, who, after selling to Paulson, pleaded guilty in 2012 to felony grand theft and narrowly avoided prison?

Or the Glickman group, who threw out the Rockies...the only ownership group since the first Reagan administration that was worth anything.

Paulson actually fits right in.

Sorry Roger but you are WRONG. We have a great AAA Team here in Reno; which is the AAA affiliate of the Arizona Diamondbacks. We've had a winning record for 3 of the past 4 years; won the national AAA Title in 2012, and have 6 to 8 players that get called up to the big leagues during the season. We also have a five year old stadium which is every bit as nice as the ones used by MLB teams in Arizona for Spring Training (which we attend every year.) Oh - and a DRY CLIMATE where it rarely rains and enjoys ideal baseball weather most of the year.
The Beavers failed because they played in an old dump of a stadium with no low cost parking nearby, had a lousy climate to play in, and their promotions were a joke. It also didn't help that they were affiliated with a perpetual loser of a MLB team either.


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