- Pennsylvania Among 'Terrible 10' Most Regressive Tax States
- February 4 Non-Partisan Training: HOW TO RUN FOR ELECTION BOARD IN 2013: HOW TO RUN FOR COMMITTEEPERSON IN 2014
- Republican Governors Opt-In to Medicaid Expansion
- The Reports of Unions' Death Are Greatly Exaggerated
- Ask Allyson Schwartz to run for Governor
- Mind the gap: Opting Out of Medicaid Expansion Leaves Low-income Families Behind
- Jan. 14 Workshop:HOW TO RUN FOR ELECTION BOARD IN 2013; HOW TO RUN FOR COMMITTEEPERSON IN 2014
- Seth Williams on Guns, Jasmine Rivera on School Closures @PFC Meetup Wednesday
- PA Revenue Strong Midway Through Year; Tax Cut Could Have Big Impact
- What to Make of the Fiscal Cliff Deal?
Opiate of the Masses: Monday Night Football at the Linc
This was written back when the Football season was young and the season still had hope. Or did it?
Last night was my first visit to the taxpayer-subsidized marvel that is Lincoln Financial Field, in South Philadelphia. More importantly for most local denizens, the sports arena is home to the beloved Eagles football team. I spent the first half hour in my seat stunned at the overwhelmingly and incredible modern stadium. Even from the upper deck, the view was fantastic. The technology from the large flat screens to the lighting was futuristic. The architecture–especially for Philadelphia–was surprisingly innovative. The field has beautiful grass and perfectly placed powder lines demarcating the yard lines and end zones. During the game time festivities, fireworks sprouted from the stadium’s upper reaches, emphasizing that the place was about entertainment as much as any sporting contest.
I was glad I didn’t drive to the game–having hopped on the Broad Street subway–once I saw the traffic streaming into the parking lots surrounding the stadiums, clear evidence of poor regional infrastructure planning. I did notice immediately that I was one of the few fans that neglected to wear a green, white or black jersey sporting the hometown colors. How much football allows people to live in a fantasy world is not something I understand very well. Upon leaving the stadium around midnight, the sea of campers and stretch limos waiting outside was mind boggling. I suppose sports are always an escape for many people but the fantasy that I saw enacted at the Linc showed just how mass media, Madison avenue and elites have managed to create what I can only describe as the most sophisticated opiate for the masses that has ever been devised.
About half an hour into the game, I reached up to hand comb my hair and what do you know: some jerk had poured the cheese from his fries into my hair and all over my back. Apparently, my light green colored shirt and tranquil observation of the game were interpreted to mean that I was–heaven forbid and INCORRECTLY–a Green Bay Packers fan. For those who don’t know, the Packers are from Wisconsin, known for dairy farms. At first, I figured that maybe the dripped, dried cheese was an accident and tried not to get too steamed. Alas, later in the game, the jerk–who was now beyond drunk–smacked me on the head, smirking at his inside joke. I gave him a dirty look and imagined throwing him over the railing before calming myself down. The game ended up being an enjoyable Eagle rout, and Donovan McNabb continued what may be his best season yet, but I don’t think I’ll be visiting the Linc on a regular basis. Maybe I’m just being cynical but there is something drastically wrong with public policy that reinforces a fantasy world were football matters above the pressing matters that our society faces and incivility is acceptable.
Don't worry, I will still be rooting--or maybe I should say praying--for the Eagles! And yes, I know the team simply isn't the same without number 5.