After taking on corruption and scandal at soccer's main governing body, FIFA, HBO's John Oliver has a new target for ridicule—sports stadiums.
Oliver highlighted the ridiculous amount of public money being paid by cities to billionaire sports owners to build new stadiums on Sunday's "Last Week Tonight"—noting that between 2000 and 2010, cities have paid over $12 billion for 51 new sports facilities.
Part of the reason stadiums are so expensive to build these days is due in part to the insane luxury features owners are adding. As Oliver remarks, stadium designs have gotten so opulent that they "look like they were designed by a coked-up Willy Wonka."
And Oliver isn't being facetious. Just look at the Miami Marlins new $639 million baseball stadium which boasts—among other amenities—an aquarium behind home plate.
As I've reported here earlier, cities rarely see the economic benefits and job growth promised by sports stadium proposals. So why do local governments continue to throw money at these projects? Reason recently sat down with Chapman University professor Joel Kotkin to dispel some of the popular myths of sports stadium projects and why cities continue to be suckers for them. You can watch the interview below which runs about five minutes.