Friday, May 22, 2009

The Elton John/Billy Joel Concert at Conseco

The Indianapolis Star reports on the recent sold out concert of Elton John and Billy Joel held at Conseco Fieldhouse. Who employed and paid the individuals working at Conseco that night that helped put on the event? That would be the Indiana Pacers. The team pays the salaries of the employees who run Conseco and in return the Pacers get the profits from the building. That was the deal that was struck nearly 10 years ago.

Imagine that same concert a year or so from now. Whose employees would be putting on that event at Conseco? Still the Pacers. Who would be paying the salaries of those employees? Well if the Mayor's Office, the leadership of both local political parties, and the Capital Improvement Board have their way, that would be the taxpayers. They are all saying that the taxpayers should pay the Pacers' $15 million per year cost of running Conseco. And who would get the profits from the concert? Well, that would still go 100% to the Pacers.

It what bizarro world is this a good idea?


jabberdoodle said...

Well, in the bizzaro world where you get to spend somebody else's money - and maybe get a free ticket or two along the way; that's what bizzaro world.

Downtown Indy said...

It does beg the question, 'Why should the Pacers Sports and Entertainment Group continue to exist if taxpayers start footing the bills?'

I doubt many taxpayers even know this organization exists, operating as a Tier 2 entity in the CIB's Multi-Level Marketing scheme/scam.

Paul K. Ogden said...

DI, thanks for clarifying the exact name of the group that technically runs the place. For shorthand purposes, I just referred to that organization as the "Pacers." Not that that matters.

Downtown Indy said...

That's something many people don't understand - the 'Pacers' would be 'Tier 3' in my characterization.

People (mostly reporters, Bill Benner and CIB board members) blather on about the supposed calamity of the 'Pacers' leaving town, not acknowledging they are but a fraction of the business that PSEG deals with.

I would expect the Elton/Joel concert raked in more dough than a Pacer game, not that we taxpayers benefitted from that. Tickets were $53 to $179 each. I don't know what Pacer tickets are, but less on average I would guess.

Anonymous said...

It's the new direction for privatization. The public absorbs the costs and the losses, and the private organization gets all of the profits. Bush and Obama have extended the same thing to our failed banks.

It's also known as corporatization. Corporatism is when government is controlled by private financial interests who use privatisation as a ploy to get the public to pay the bills. Instead of tax dollars going back to government, they go into the pockets of private individuals and corporations. It's been a reality in Washingtom for decades. It's now a reality in Indiana.

Paul K. Ogden said...


As someone who was a fan of privatization when the idea first got started, I regret to say that you characterized it correctly. Good idea...bad implementation.

I'm just disappointed that I didn't see this pitfall of privatization coming down the road.