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Most Broke, Liberal City Spending Half Billion on Hockey Arena

By , July 29, 2013.

Photo credit: Flickr/Jason Paris

We’ve all heard about Detroit’s bankruptcy as bleeding-heart “economists” plead for a bailout from Uncle Sam. Yet, the city of Detroit intends to move forward with its contribution to the Redwings’ new hockey arena.

According to CNN, the city plans to spend $444 million of Michigan taxpayers’ money on the facility, despite hour-long police delays and shutting off 40 percent of its street lights to save money. To borrow from The Simpsons character Mr. Burns, Detroit plans to use taxpayer funds to help a billionaire build a private playground for millionaires. Team owner Mike Ilitch is only worth $2.4 billion these days, so the city clearly needs to finance his every need during this tough time.

Let’s not forget that the average hockey fan is rather well off, either. According to CNBC, hockey fans have a higher average household income than any other major sport at $104,000. That’s about twice the national average of under $53,000. Combine that with Detroit’s blight and economic woes and chances are slim the average Redwings fan lives within city limits.

While proponents argue this investment is necessary, let’s call it what it is: corporate welfare. The tired “we need jobs” argument doesn’t pan out, as the construction needs will be temporary and the existing stadium already provides jobs. The move is little more than padding a billionaire’s wallet so he and his millionaire players can make more money off entertaining upper middle-class suburbanites.

So, America’s most liberal city intends to keep spending recklessly, making the Obama Administration’s current stance all the more important. The Administration’s decision not to bail the city out may very well be the best of its second term. Let’s hope it sticks with it.

  • Joe Short

    Not on my watch!!!!

    • Greg

      That’s funny no bail out from the administration. They were bashing Romney for “wanting Detroit to go bankrupt”. Lol even though it was the big three. Obama said “Detroit”. But here the Muslim president is gonna let Detroit go bankrupt anyways. Hahaa silly liberals. This is why Obama continues to spend and lie and force and penalize us to accept his trash health care.

      • Rock Drumr

        Such harsh words about the man who saved your slimy but!!!

  • terry

    what’s the problem with Joe Louis Arena? Unless they are bulldozing a neighborhood like the one in the picture, its not worth it. Just have Mr Ilitch sell more pizzas to fund his own business venture.

  • Derek

    Don’t like it move out of Detroit….

    I’m from Pittsburgh, look what happend to da burgh in the late 80’s… Steel mills closed.. We rebounded…
    Get educated, get motivated, quit complaining…

    Ps. I hate the wing but I’d rather them spend money on hockey then a sport that promotes “gangs” like football

    • NTR2DR

      Thumbs up Derek!

    • Michael P. McMahon

      Two Thumbs-up from this unemployed, disabled Veteran, who has been a fan of Hockey since the 1970’s and has never made more than a quarter of what they say the average hockey fan makes a year.

  • Geary

    AFTER you make a rational case for spending on ANY sports stadium in a city where nearly half it’s residents don’t pay income or property tax (latter cause they don’t feel like it) we can discuss it. What kind of stadium is irrelevant, frankly. Kapish?

  • Geary

    Oh, and in case you don’t get it … They used to be a city of prox 2 million, now 700,000. Your MOVE comment is both late AND ignorant (but then again, you did say you’re from Pittsburg, right?

  • fresno

    If anyone from Detroit ever says anything about their city not being bailed out, the only rebuttal that would be needed would be to point to this. Just how stupid can human beings be? I wonder what a little research into campaign contributions would reveal?

  • Beberoni

    Gee, I got an idea. Lets just move the Red Wings out of Detroit, and take the millions upon millions of tax dollars they create. Why always demonize the successful? Where is the full truth here, that the cities investment will be paid back ten fold by the tax revenue this place generates. Man, its so easy to pick on those that have. Why do we always have to demonize success in this country, and reward and respect failure all the time? Its just wrong.