Bailout or Game Saver?

Do University of Louisville fans have a stake in the financial rescue legislation being considered by Congress? This observer doesn’t claim to be a financial analyst, but the answer is a resounding yes – for us as individuals and family members and, collectively, as a fan base.

Elaborate marble facade of NYSE as seen from the intersection of Broad and Wall Streets
Wall Street is us.

Wall Street is us.

You, me, our kids, our kin, our friends, our employers, our co-workers, our customers, and our university.

The companies that make up the Dow Jones and Nasdaq indexes are the source of our salaries and pensions, not some disconnected hypothetical entities. Their success or failure directly impacts our paychecks, our savings, our investments and our U of L donations and ticket purchases.

Last time the observer checked, the price tags for the basketball arena construction and football stadium expansion were in the neighborhoods of $238 million and $73 million, respectively. No one connected with the projects has said anything but you can bet there are some furrowed brows at U of L as Washington debates this issue.

Yes, the money for those projects is in a bank somewhere. But there’s a huge demand for those funds. No bank has that much money just sitting around, and the FDIC only insures bank balances up to $100,000. The strain on bond-insurer, Assured Guaranty, would be enormous if everything else is failing.

Unless those funds are paid directly to the construction managers and their subcontractors, the construction companies must find somewhere to borrow the cash. Good luck finding that money for employees, equipment, seats and scoreboards if the economy is allowed to fail. Good luck finding fans to buy seats if their choice is between season tickets and putting food on the table.

All of the elements between Wall Street, Main Street and the street we live on are interconnected. Remove any of them from the equation and you get economic chaos.

The observer believes in limited government and is active in combating overreaching government on a daily basis. In this situation, however, there is no workable alternative. Socialism? Yeah, maybe, but only if your ox isn’t getting gored.

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U of L Role in DC: Two U of L graduates –- Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) — played key roles in helping assure a bi-partisan effort that led to passage of the financial rescue package in the Senate Wednesday evening.

Senator McConnell is the Minority Leader and Senator Dodd is Chairman of the Senate Banking Committee. But it’s only half done and far from done. Now it’s up to the House of Representatives where anything goes and the fate is unpredictable.

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Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.

5 thoughts on “Bailout or Game Saver?

  • October 2, 2008 at 7:53 am

    All too true on the economy. Lot of people sticking their head in the sand on this issue. There comes a time when ideology has to give way to reality.

  • October 2, 2008 at 8:18 am

    What a roller coaster ride this is. First, all the dramatics of where the arena should be. Then it gets the green light. Then the funding falls through. Then the issue with the bond company. Then it is good to go again. The expansion is approved, then the state drags its ass delaying it a year. Then its good to go again minus thousands of seats to drop it below 60K. Now some dude on a blog comes and makes everybody worry all over again because of the economy. I wish everybody was as big a UofL fan as I am, jeez.

  • October 2, 2008 at 8:20 am

    Oh no, you’ve ventured into political “discoarse”

    Charlie, you’re a socialist! : – )

  • October 2, 2008 at 9:16 am

    I have a lot of second thoughts about this one folks. But I think there’s too much at stake to trust the way the system was going.

  • October 4, 2008 at 1:26 pm

    The final verdict on right wing deregulation FAILURE!

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