Saturday, May 31, 2014

Good For Steve Ballmer

By Robert Wenzel

The manner in which the NBA treated Donald Sterling was truly outrageous, that being said, I am happy to see Steve Ballmer blow away other bidders for the Los Angeles Clippers with his $2 billion bid. Awesome.

I think billionaires are generally a bored lot. They have so much money that they can pretty much buy any creature comforts they want. Many of them seem to one to break their boredom by attempting to manipulate the world. George Soros, the Koch brothers, Bill Gates, come to mind, what are these guys other than bored billionaires trying to play a real world version of the board game, Risk?

It's good to see that that there are other billionaires that attempt to break their boredom by channeling their energy in directions that does not involve attempting to control the world and by extension all of us. Mark Cuban comes to mind, as does Donald Trump with his golf courses and beauty pageants, and, now, Steve Ballmer.

Good for him, he has found a place, the NBA, where he can battle other billionaires and still leave the rest of us out of it. What's more fun is that we can get front row seats to these battles with, literally, popcorn in our hands.

Of course, there is the politically correct crowd that sees things completely differently. USA Today columnist  Nancy Armour writes:
Set aside the galling fact that Sterling is cashing in on the bigoted and racially insensitive remarks that started this whole fiasco. Set aside, too, the absurdity of spending $2 billion when that money could be put toward things like childhood education or, if Ballmer is really hung up on sports, after-school programs for kids.
No team is worth $2 billion, and most certainly not the Clippers.
First, how is Sterling cashing in on his alleged-bigtroy? The man sold a basketball team that consists overwhelmingly of black players and has a black coach.

Second, it is clear Armour is ignorant of the very important Austrian School concept of subjective value, if she can write, " No team is worth $2 billion."

And, finally, Ballmer is doing a lot more to properly influence kids by showing them that if you are involved in providing a good product, Windows, you can make enough money to buy the Clippers, that is a much greater teaching lesson than if Ballmer would have spent the money buying politically correct books that distort the nature of racism, fail to teach kids the reality of subjective value and .never contain the words, private property, entrepreneurship or liberty.
Robert Wenzel is Editor & Publisher of and author of The Fed Flunks: My Speech at the New York Federal Reserve Bank.


  1. Pro sports and the costs to air their games have been rising exponentially over the last 30 years. As a result traditional cable and satellite premiums have risen as well the values of the franchises.

    The only TV channels that make any real money are the ones that broadcast live sporting events. The rest- canned content channels and the corporate-state owned press are dying. At some point the price of TV rights for sports events will peak, and when cable/satellite averages $140 a month, will that be the day consumers say no mas? Will big time pro sports team values just perpetually rise in price?

    The teams may be cash flow flat or poor, but so far even the worst run teams have seen their value of their franchises explode especially when they get to screw over taxpayers for mini disney world type stadiums that bring about new revenue streams.

  2. The irony is the Clippers are most likely worth much more than $2b to Donald Sterling. He most likely would not sell the team for $2b if the NBA weren't forcing him.

    People like Armour are upset Sterling is cashing in. They wish the NBA would seize his property. They don't see this is a psychic loss for Sterling. He loses status, his lifestyle, the competition, being an insider of an elite club. They just see $2 billion and envy percolates through their pores. How could a thoughtcriminal make billions after being found out as a thoughtcriminal?

    1. Yes, and worse than a thoughtcriminal he is wealthy, and must be made to pay.