Last night, the Cleveland Cavaliers clinched their division title. At least the city’s basketball team is good.
The rest of the city is not. Forbes Magazine recently rated Cleveland as the country’s “most miserable city.” Once America’s sixth-largest city, it has been in decline for decades, and the city’s bureaucrat planners have done nothing to help.
A good sports team like the Cavaliers can be good for morale, but let the sports tycoons pay for their own stadiums. Cleveland’s politicians think throwing millions of taxpayer dollars at big stadium and convention center projects will magically revitalize the city. It never does.
On my Fox Business show tonight at 8pm and 11pm EST, I’ll interview J.C. Bradbury, author of "The Baseball Economist: The Real Game Exposed." He says “there's a huge consensus among economists that there is no economic development benefit to having these stadiums.” Even the former mayor of Cleveland, Congressman Dennis Kucinich, agrees. And he’s all about central planning. Of course, he goes on to (jokingly, I hope) suggest that Cleveland should own a team instead of just funding a stadium.
The arrogance of city planners knows no end. After using tax dollars to build three big stadiums in the 1990s, now Cleveland is spending taxpayers' money on a medical convention center that they say will turn Cleveland into a "Disney World for doctors.” More on that tonight.