“My Name is Chuckie and I live in Jacksonville Florida”
“Hello Chuckie” The group of faceless Jacksonville residents repeated in unison after the JRA (Jacksonville Residents Anonymous) meeting starts..
Why do I attend these meetings, I hear you cry? Well, I'll tell you, I live in about the most backwards and non-sensical city in the country. And that saddens me.
How can that be? How dare you? What do you you base this statement on?
Okay, here are a few examples.
Jacksonville has a budget problem but we spend money on stupid shit as if we were printing it. Look at Metro Park. The city has a gorgeous older concert facility sitting on prime real estate next to the river downtown. The stage is in disrepair after years of the city's neglect. We could drop a few million dollars and upgrade this existing facility into a world class amphitheater. Sounds good right? Wrong. Not to the Jacksonville city council. They just voted to spend forty five million ($45,000,000.00) of your tax dollars to help the owner of the Jaguars build a new facility downtown on the river. Not a word about upgrading the existing facility.
Yes, you heard me right. The same city council that is involved in ethics investigations for accepting illegal gifts and bribes from the Jacksonville Jaguars just voted to give the owner of the Jaguars forty five million dollars. For a team that is proudly boasting a 5-10 record. “Move on folks, Nothing to see here”.
Where does Jacksonville get all this cash to hand over to the Jaguars to try and keep them from leaving town and lining the cities council members pockets? That's an easy one. They just steal it from other non-essential parts of the cities budget. So we cut the size of the police force, we close a few fire stations. Libraries? Don’t need those. Maintenance to the streets and infrastructure? Put it off a few more years. The streets and utility grids have worked well for fifty years or so, why worry about it now? Hell, let’s just increase the rates at the city owned utility companies while we are at it. Who can fight that? So what if our bridges are falling down, water pipes are breaking, the crime statistics rise and residents are being flooded out of their homes when it rains? This is the Jaguars we are talking about!
The budget issues didn’t bother any of the Jaguars fans until a couple years ago when the budget shortfall was so bad there was talk of cutting the after school athletic programs. Then the shit hit the fan. Why would we want to send our children to school if there wasn’t any football, basketball or baseball for them to play? Don’t we have any priorities? Funny how that issue was fixed so quickly.
So then the politicians came up with a sneaky answer. They raised fees on city services. Of course they didn’t raise taxes. That’s a political no no. Just fees on things that the residents of the city use and enjoy. Want to go to the beautiful parks at the beach? Open up your wallet. The roads inside of Huguenot park are crumbling away. The city keeps raising the price of admission but never fixes the roads. Where does the money go? Call the city and ask them how much it would cost you to tie up your boat at the Marina on the St. Johns River (that your tax dollars paid for) on a weekend when the Jaguars have a home game. Want to pitch a tent at Hanna Park? You better be prepared to drop $50 to $60 bucks for the weekend.
Since the Jacksonville city council is so keen on blowing your hard earned money on silly shit for the Jaguars, I have the grandaddy stupidest idea of them all.
Let’s build the worlds first floating football stadium.
We could anchor it in the St. Johns river then tow it all over the east coast so that when the Jaguars lose the next game the city doesn’t have to endure the stench of their defeat. If more than a hundred fans show up for a game, we can tow the stadium off shore so the assholes on the other side of the river won’t complain about the noise. I mean c’mon now. We have a football stadium with a couple of swimming pools in it for beer swilling redneck fans to pee in, why not float the whole stadium and run the plumbing from the urinals directly into the river? And when the city has no more money to give, when every taxpayer can’t afford to feed his family, Shad Kahn could tow the stadium somewhere else and milk a new city into bankruptcy. I wonder if it would make it to London?
It wouldn’t cost that much to achieve this accomplishment either. We could just close all the schools, lay off half the police force and fire department’s, let all of the bad guys out of jail and then raise a few more fees. Simple as pie.
And if we can’t find a material that is buoyant enough to support the incredible weight of the stadium we could just simply bundle more cash together to make floats to hold that boondoggle up.
You got any better ideas?