Dispatches from the Creation Wars

The Washington Nationals are the talk of baseball this year, having returned baseball to the nation’s capital and put aside the losing ways they had as the Montreal Expos prior to this year. They’re such a hot commodity that several groups are bidding to buy the team, including one group that includes billionaire Democratic Party booster George Soros. And as Roll Call magazine reports, some Republican leaders are actually threatening retaliation on Major League Baseball if they allow Soros’ group to buy the team:

“I think Major League Baseball understands the stakes,” said Government Reform Chairman Tom Davis (R), the Northern Virginia lawmaker who recently convened high-profile steroid hearings. “I don’t think they want to get involved in a political fight.”

Davis, whose panel also oversees District of Columbia issues, said that if a Soros sale went through, “I don’t think it’s the Nats that get hurt. I think it’s Major League Baseball that gets hurt. They enjoy all sorts of exemptions” from anti-trust laws.

Indeed, Hill Republicans could potentially make life difficult for MLB in a variety of ways. In addition to being exempt from anti-trust rules, baseball is still under scrutiny over the steroid issue. The Nats, meanwhile, hope to have a publicly-funded stadium built soon, though money for that venture is expected to come through the sale of bonds rather than a federal outlay.

Still, Rep. John Sweeney (R-N.Y.), vice chairman of the Appropriations subcommittee that covers the District of Columbia budget, said if Soros buys the team and seeks public funding for the new stadium or anything else, the GOP attitude would be, “Let him pay for it.”

Breathtaking, isn’t it? I don’t recall Democrats threatening to take away baseball’s antitrust exemption when President Bush was a part owner of the Texas Rangers. For that matter, George Steinbrenner was once convicted of illegal contributions to the Nixon campaign and 13 current or former baseball team owners contributed at least $100,000 to the Bush campaign in the last election. Or how about Rupert Murdoch, billionaire Republican Party booster, who until 2004 owned the LA Dodgers?

Radley Balko is right when he says, “Davis is making a public threat to sanction a private industry for doing business with a political opponent” and he’s right that he should be stripped of his committee chairmanship for it. It’s an outrageous threat of an abuse of power.

Comments

  1. #1 Tim Miller
    June 30, 2005

    I have noticed the Republican’s abuse of power. I have watch a couple series of TV specials on how the Republicans want to take away funding for PBS. Here is a channel that shows hardly any commericals and a channel that the young and the old can watch without getting offended. The documentries that are shown are very interesting and educational but yet this party wants to take a educational tool away. From what I have seen in the Republican party, they want to
    take any station, newspaper, website or chat room away that will show or tell just what they are up to. Taking away PBS, chat rooms etc is just another road to communism but being slated as security measures. I give it another 3 years and this great nation as well as the world will see just how this party is and their true goals are..

  2. #2 Joe Riddle
    July 3, 2005

    Even durning world war two this country was not in the shape it is now under the conservative rule.
    This is a sorry time for all citizens even if some don’t realize it yet..This is just the lull before the storm

  3. #3 raj
    July 3, 2005

    Just to let you know, my (same sex) spouse’s relatives were living in Nazi occupied Germany. I use “Nazi occupied” intentionally. The Nazis had been supported by the Junker from East Prussia, the minor nobility in the UK and some American industrialists, such as Henry Ford and Thomas Watson (of IBM fame).

    My spouse’s relatives lived in a western suburb of Munich. While the country was occupied by Nazis, they would listen to BBC broadcasts. Surrepticiously, of course. While they did so, they would send their dog up to the garden gate to warn them if someone might come by who might “out” them. The local Nazi occupiers murdered the dog.

    Joe, I find your posts over at ex-gaywatch.com interesting. But you’re way too kind.

  4. #4 JOE CLARK
    July 6, 2005

    ABUSE BY REPUBLICAN OR DEMOS IS WRONG! ABUSE BELITTLES OUR DEMOCRACY AND IS IN VIOLATION OF MOST OF THE 10 COMMANDMENTS. WHERE IS THE CHRISTIAN OUTCRY WHEN THE BIBLE IS USED AS A SHIELD AND VIOLATED AS A VIRGIN. RELIGION AND TENANTS ARE DEFAMED WHEN PEOPLE ABUSE THE POWER THAT HAS BEEN GIVEN TO THEM. DON’T CRY, “I AM A CHRISTIAN” WHEN YOU RAPE THE U.S.A. SHAME ON THE CROOKS, LIARS,AND THEIVES. MANY OF OUR OFFICIALS SHOULD BE CHARGED AS SEX CRIMINALS FOR SCREWING AMERICAN AND VIOLATING AND UNDERMINING THE CONSTITUTION.

  5. #5 Judy
    July 7, 2005

    I guess it depends on which side of the fence your on when it comes to PBS. It has shown some very offensive things as far as I am concerned. It is very liberal in all it’s views. Mr. Rose usualy shows both sides without too much prejudice. However, when they show “Christian” information they chose the Most liberal members of that community to represent the whole community.

    I am not sure why there is a threat to the anti- trust exemption for baseball. Truly the collective organization is not without questionable activities, but I do not know enough about the subject to make an intellegent argument.

    I don’t agree with everything the present administration does by a long shot, but I am not up on enough of the real facts to comment further.

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