|Go, then! Go to the moon-you selfish dreamer!|
“Yes, I have tricks in my pocket, I have things up my sleeve. But I am the opposite of a stage magician. He gives you illusion that has the appearance of truth. I give you truth in the pleasant disguise of illusion.”
-- Tennessee Williams, "The Glass Menagerie"
So we got a look at the plans for the new Vikings stadium the other day and it's very,well, glassy:
The nearly billion-dollar Viking stadium that will rise from the ruins of the old Metrodome will be big and bold, and it will put fans closer to the action than any other venue in professional football.I don't know why, but that level of hype always makes me think of this song:
It’ll have giant pivoting glass doors that open to the downtown Minneapolis skyline and a roof that, while not retractable, will let in so much sunlight come game days, fans will feel as though they’re sitting outdoors.
We're supposed to be wowed by the nifty artists' renderings and whatnot and not think too much about the cost and that we still don't have a way to pay for this thing. We can choose to live with our illusions, but that reality doesn't go away just because we have cool looking pictures.
And about that paying for it part:
First, e-pulltabs virtually collapsed as a revenue source for the state’s share of the new Vikings stadium.Now the sports memorabilia tax, once thought to be a fallback plan, may also be doomed.The deuce you say? Why would that be?
With only six days left in the legislative session, Senate leaders on Tuesday declared the idea of taxing sports memorabilia nearly dead, because of the effect it might have on a single corporation: Target.Yeah, I suppose slapping a wholesale tax on gear that Target would ordinarily sell in Colma, California or McAllen, Texas, might be a wee bit of a problem. So now what?
Senate Taxes Committee Chairman Rod Skoe, DFL-Clearwater, said Tuesday that because the tax would be levied at the wholesale level, it would have a disparate impact on Target, which warehouses the sports memorabilia for its more than 1,700 U.S. stores in Minnesota.
“We’re hearing there’s this supersecret plan to fund the shortfall in the Vikings stadium. The governor hasn’t said what it is,” said Sen. Julianne Ortman, R-Chanhassen, the ranking minority member on the Taxes Committee. “We don’t know what their plans are. It seems, six days out, they would have a better framework at least for the close of session here.”Bakk can't "find" $25 million. But he can take it out of our wallets. And that's what's going to happen.
Senate Majority Leader Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook, said he’s not worried. “I think they can find $25 million or whatever it takes” to fill in the gambling shortfall, he said.Legislators are looking at a wide range of other solutions, including corporate taxes, income taxes or even cigarette taxes to help fund the stadium.