Tuesday, May 18, 2004

You Gotta Be In It To Win It

It might just be me, but this story seems a little strange. Thailand is trying to buy a stake in one of the English Premier League's top squads, Liverpool FC. That’s right, the entire country is trying to buy %30 of the team, not just one rich Thai guy. They're planning to hold a lottery to raise funds so that Thailand can become %30 owners of Liverpool. Seriously, what kind of foreign policy is this? The Middle East is about to go up in one big fireball, North Korea is probably stockpiling nukes like crazy, and there’s an AIDS epidemic in Africa, but English football is what Thailand is concerned with.

But I shouldn’t disparage Thailand as a whole on this one. It appears that the Prime Minister of Thailand, Thaksin Shinawatra, fancies himself to be George Thaibrenner and wants to run a world famous sports team. Shinawatra is a very rich fellow apparently, but being the Prime Minister gives him the ability to invent a lottery to procure money for the team. He gets to buy his sports team and keep his fat cash stacks; that’s what you call a win-win I believe. Even Steinbrenner would admire that.

But I don’t see how this plan is going to work. Apparently when you buy a lotto ticket, you’ll get 200 shares in the holding company that’s being set up to control their Liverpool stake. So does this mean they need to have a national referendum for every decision the club needs to make? I can see the lawn signs now “Vote yes on proposition G28 – Allow Liverpool to sell Emile Heskey to Birmingham”. The one upside there is that they might increase voter turnout. I know if they did that in Toronto with the Leafs you’d increase the voter turnout by %4000. “Proposition D89 – Should the Leafs Re-Sign Tie Domi” – People would riot trying to vote multiple times.

But it should be interesting to see how this unfolds. If Thailand is successful in buying a stake in Liverpool, I think Canada should take notice. I think there are tons of people like me in this country who would buy many, many lottery tickets if the proceeds went towards buying a stake in the Yankees. Then we could get to work trading Jeter to the Hokkaido Nippon Ham Fighters and generally running the team into the ground. Now there's a political movement we can all get behind.

Posted at 11:50 PM by naedoo :: 0 comments

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