Poetic Justice


I don’t know about you, but I see some poetic justice in the fact that while the University of Oregon is building the most expensive basketball arena in the country, its men’s basketball team is 6-19 (0-13 in the Pac-10). To paraphrase Winston Churchill, never before has so much been spent on so little. They could have simply renovated McArthur Court, but that wasn’t good enough for Phil Knight. He simply had to have a monument to his resplendent glory. After all, he needs to do something with all that money he made off sweatshop labor. Of course, Phil could easily afford to pay for the entire arena out of his own pocket, but he doesn’t want to be presumptuous, so the University will borrow the money to pay for finishing the project. (This is at a a time when the state is making cuts in education spending.) Phil has modestly asked that the arena be named after his son instead of him. What a guy. Of course, when people hear the name “Knight Arena”, they will assume it was named after Phil. That’s not Phil’s fault, of course.

A little late in the game, some people have started to have second thoughts about this whole new arena business. They recently learned that they will have to pay higher prices for tickets. This is a surprise? Building a new arena always means a rise in ticket prices. People in L.A. learned this when the Staples Center was built. Life-long Lakers fans suddenly found they could no longer afford tickets. Of course, to gain something, you may have to lose something. To get a new arena, you may have to stop going to the games. Phil doesn’t have to worry about this, of course.

I’m waiting for the day when UO president, Dave Frohnmeyer, issues a directive that all students must have the Nike swoosh tattooed on their foreheads.

Just do it!

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