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Elderly Phoenix Woman Dunks on Welfare-Seeking Phoenix Suns Owner

"We are not in the business of paying taxes to support private enterprise, and especially not an entertainment enterprise," says your new hero Greta Rogers.

It's unclear whether the Phoenix City Council will follow through on plans to give $150 million to the city's professional basketball team, the Phoenix Suns, for stadium upgrades.

The team's owner, Robert Sarver, has threatened to leave town if the city doesn't kick in a significant portion of an estimated $230 million renovation of Talking Stick Resort Arena, where the team has played since 1992. But he's also promised that the team isn't going anywhere. The city council was supposed to vote on the massive subsidy last week, but then decided to kick the can until next month in the face of public opposition to the giveaway.

Regardless of the eventual outcome, though, the winner in this fight is pretty clearly Phoenix resident Greta Rogers, who went hard to the hole and posterized team owner Sarver and the entire city council for even considering a nine-figure handout to a professional basketball team worth billions.

"We are not in the business of paying taxes to support private enterprise, and especially not an entertainment enterprise," she said. "They can support themselves or fail on their own lack of diligence."

Here's the full video of her comments, which begin just after the 26-minute mark.

Rogers dunked hardest on Sarver, whom she described as a skinflint owner unwilling to open his wallet to land a big-name free agent or otherwise rebuild a team that's finished near the bottom of the league for most of the past decade—the Suns haven't made the playoffs since 2010 in a league where more than half the teams qualify each year. That's a stark contrast to where the team was in 2004, when Sarver bought the Suns for $400 million (they are worth an estimated $1.28 billion today). That same season, the Suns finished with the best record in the league and advanced to the brink of the NBA finals. After another deep playoff run in 2005, the team went into a long decline that shows little sign of ending anytime soon.

That's not all on Sarver. But he hasn't exactly ingratiated himself into the community, ether. In his book about those good Suns teams from the middle of the last decade, Sports Illustrated writer Jack McCallum recounts a story about how Sarver fired a Suns security guard and then "re-assigned" him because the guy did not recognize Sarver and turned him away from a staff-only entrance shortly after he bought the team. Oh, and there's been the ongoing attempts to fleece the people of Phoenix out of their money for new stadiums and stadium upgrades.

Rogers probably speaks for a good chunk of the Phoenix basketball-loving population when she throws an elbow at Sarver. Two-thirds of voters oppose the stadium scheme, according to a poll from the Arizona Republic newspaper, which has also been pretty critical of the idea.

In a piece published last week, Republic columnist Laurie Roberts suggests five ways the stadium deal could be improved. Top of the list? Cut the public's share of the stadium upgrade costs from two-thirds to one-third. That's a good idea. Here's a better one: Cut it from two-thirds to nothing.

Photo Credit: Manny Flores/Cal Sport Media/Newscom

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  • Arizona_Guy||

    Arizona in the news!

  • BestUsedCarSales||

    I KNOW!!!

  • Sevo||

    TuIpa|12.17.18 @ 11:43PM|#
    "Oh and Shevo THINKS I'M HIHN!!!"

    How stupid to you have to be to hope your stupidity is not obvious?
    Well, stupid enough to be Hihn.
    Fuck off.

  • Last of the Shitlords||

    The real Mike Hihn lives in Meridian, Idaho. For fun, we should contact mental health officials there and forward his shitposts. Maybe they will take him in for a 72 hour eval. Then he can experience that excessive govt. he advocates all the time.

  • SQRLSY One||

    Hihnister Satulpatanic Satanulpinipulator:

    In days of old,
    When knights were bold,
    And toilets weren't invented,
    We stopped by the road,
    And dropped our load,
    And walked away contented!

    The days of old are over now... We have toilets now. Please be considerate of others, and drop your loads there, instead of a nice, clean, rational web site like Reason.com!

  • Deconstructed Potato||

    Legitimate laughing out loud moment. I would also like to add please do not ruin this Arizona moment.

  • SQRLSY One||

    Get thee behind us, ye Hihnister Satulpatanic Satanulpinipulator ye!

    Yer lies will not be believed here; we believe in REASON, not your obvious LIES, ye Evil One!

  • Zeb||

    Oh, the irony.

  • a ab abc abcd abcde abcdef ahf||

    Good on her, but her sniping about him not hiring good players should either have been left out altogether as irrelevant, or used only to show that if Sarver doesn't care enough about his own property to spruce it up, it's doubly disingenuous to come hat in hand to the taxpayers for a handout.

  • Overt||

    I think that was her point. She started with saying it is the responsibility of the private enterprise to support itself, and then she explained that Sarver hasn't even been willing to shell out for some good players.

    She probably could have done better at nailing that point home, but considering she did that without notes, I'm going to give her a pass!

  • Hattori Hanzo||

    The public interest in keeping the Suns in Phoenix is even lower than I thought. I don't know a single person that wants to give Sarver money. Our city council held secret meetings and announced a vote just a few days later. After outcry in the press the decided to delay the vote and political hack and mayoral hopeful Kate Gallegos came out against it.

  • SQRLSY One||

    $Bazzilions of tax dollars for stadiums for ritualized violence, and we the taxpayers are forced to pay it... Baseball, football, etc.; they are all ritualized violence…

    Can we just spare a bare few million for ritualized sex, too, at the local naked-titty-dancing club? A little CHOICE here, please?

    Ritualized sex is FAR less likely to result in cracked ribs & broken spines & damaged brains than football, BUT, NOOOO, no tax dollars for ritualized sex... Tax dollars to SHUT HER DOWN!

    How do we start a movement, Free the Naked Titties-Skin, Just Say NO to Pigskin!

  • Juice||

    Wait. Is that Rebel Headquarters?

  • DenverJ||

    You know who used tax money to fund stadiums?

  • DenverJ||

    Goddamned it! Who ELSE, who ELSE used tax money to fund stadiums

  • Cynical Asshole||

    Your mom.

  • Rich||

    Nero -- for *stadia*?

  • Morbo||

    Leonid Brezhnev?

  • Rich||

    Talking Stick Resort Arena

    That *must* be RACIST, right? RIGHT?!

  • DenverJ||

    Well, yeah. But it's what the local injuns named their resort and casino, so whatya gonna do?

  • CDRSchafer||

    Racist redskins.

  • Cynical Asshole||

    The team's owner, Robert Sarver, has threatened to leave town if the city doesn't kick in a significant portion of an estimated $230 million renovation of Talking Stick Resort Arena, where the team has played since 1992. But he's also promised that the team isn't going anywhere.

    Yeah, right, sure, they're not going anywhere. Ask the Seattle Supersonics Oklahoma City Thunder* about how that worked out.

    *SLD: the taxpayers of Seattle got the better end of the deal. Fuck crony capitalist billionaire sports team owners.

  • IceTrey||

    I don't know our boys are looking pretty good. Thunder up!

  • Agammamon||

    "We are not in the business of paying taxes to support private enterprise, and especially not an entertainment enterprise," says your new hero Greta Rogers.

    Ol' Greta must not realize that she's in Phoenix. You know, the city that subsidizes AN ICE HOCKEY TEAM. In the desert. Where a blisteringly cold and wet winter means it gets down to 40F and you get some icy slush in the mountains a hundred miles away. A game no one in Phoenix has ever played. But one of the cities helped the team build a stadium for it.

  • Hattori Hanzo||

    You're factually incorrect on a number of points. Glendale funded the Coyotes arena. It wasn't Phoenix. Hockey, oddly enough, has growing youth ranks in Arizona. Some kid named Auston Matthews grew up a Coyotes fan and learned to play here.

  • Agammamon||

    'Phoenix' comprises all the cities in the Phoenix Metro Area. People don't break it down unless they want to talk about the municipalities individually.

    And Austin Matthews is so famous I have no idea who he is. Apparently the top hit is for a cricketer from Wales. So, is the takeaway from that that the hockey rink was a good thing for the city to have built because a cricketer from Wales learned to play there?

  • Hattori Hanzo||

    Phoenix can be used as a general term for the area but if you're referring to the city footing the bill for Gila River Arena it's Glendale. I live in Phoenix and don't pay a dime for the Coyotes unless I go to a game.

  • Lowdog||

    Sorry dude, I learned how to play hockey in Phoenix. And hattori is correct on other points below. You know, there is a way to make ice without relying on Mother Nature. In fact, I still go to the rink here in Florida in shorts and flip flops. The ice may not be great in summer, but it's still fun as hell to play, so I'll keep doing it until I can't anymore.

    As far as subsidizing pro sports (or any industry, really) - I'm agin it.

  • Red Rocks White Privilege||

    In fact, I still go to the rink here in Florida in shorts and flip flops.

    That makes sense, considering the rink in Florida is infamous for having some of the worst ice in the NHL.

  • Agammamon||

    You know, there is a way to make ice without relying on Mother Nature.

    Really? Really? I did not know that. Now that I know that my Cokes will be much nicer.

    And what, you poured a bunch of ice cubes and water in a parking lot and hoped for the best.

  • XM||

    Is she down with paying taxes for government ran projects?

    See that's where the real waste is. The Suns can always get a new owner who's serious about winning. The government is eternal.

  • XM||

    Is she down with paying taxes for government ran projects?

    See that's where the real waste is. The Suns can always get a new owner who's serious about winning. The government is eternal.

  • PaulTheBeav||

    I don't see any difference between funding parks, or museums, and funding sports teams. If anything, more people enjoy sports teams.

  • Presskh||

    Have to agree. While, in theory, I do not agree with subsidizing private organizations, we live in a competitive world. For instance, in Alabama where I live, the State agreed to build roads and forego taxes for a period of time for the Mercedes assembly plant near Tuscaloosa. The plant was built and many new supplier plants sprung up in the state to support it. Since Alabama now had an automotive supplier infrastructure (and is a right to work state), Hyundai soon built a plant near Montgomery, followed by Honda at another location. A new Toyama/Mazda plant is now in the works near Huntsville, set to open in 2021 and employing 4000, not including additional supplier plants also under construction. So, the investment by the state to attract that first Mercedes plant has turned Alabama into one of the leading southern producers of vehicles and resulted in an untold number of jobs and increased state revenue. Sometimes smart investment by government does pay off.

  • Presskh||

    Sorry, should be "Toyota/Mazda".

  • Sevo||

    Presskh|12.17.18 @ 9:07PM|#
    "Have to agree...."

    We get to chose between "abysmally stupid" or "sarc."

  • Sevo||

    One more Hihn sock' posting links which self-replicate.
    Fuck off, Hihn.

  • Sevo||

    "I prove Sevo wrong, he reacts the way you'd expect, by shitting his pants and acting stupid"
    You prove you're a fucking ignoramus incapable of linking to anything. Most people as imbecilic as you, have the decency to be embarrassed. You are too stupid to do so.
    Fuck off, Hihn.

  • perlchpr||

    I dunno about Sevo, but the repetitive shitposting is going a long way towards convincing me that you're Hihn.

  • newshutz||

    all caps, seems like the hihnsane one.

  • Zeb||

    It's funny how often the most intensely stupid people think they are smarter than everyone else.

  • Agammamon||

    Repeat after me - jobs are a cost, not a benefit.

  • Sevo||

    PaulTheBeav|12.17.18 @ 8:47PM|#
    "I don't see any difference between funding parks, or museums, and funding sports teams. If anything, more people enjoy sports teams."

    Hint: When Disney asks for support for a park, or when a local developer makes money off of a 'public park', you might have a point.
    Until then we get to chose between 'abysmally stupid" or 'sarc."

  • Sevo||

    TuIpa|12.17.18 @ 10:27PM|#
    "Disney subsidies
    State/Local $859,182,037"
    Doesn'd change my point, fucking ignoramus.

  • Agammamon||

    You do know that he didn't write 'Disney doesn't ask for subsidies for its parks', right?

  • Sevo||

    TuIpa|12.17.18 @ 10:36PM|#
    "Doesn'd change my point"
    "Your point was stupid and factually wrong so it not changing is nothing to crow about ignorant retard."
    Your response was simply that I was wrong about Disney, not about the issue, you fucking ignoramus"

    TuIpa|12.17.18 @ 10:44PM|#
    "I'm going to bookmark this thread and repost it just because it obviously pisses you off that you're an ignoramus and I proved it."
    Goody for you, fucking ignoramus. I'm doing the same to make sure everyone who reads it understands what a fucking ignoramus you are, fucking ignoramus.
    Thank you for pointing out that I will have ample opportunity to show what a fucking ignoramus you are, fucking ignoramus.

  • Sevo||

    TuIpa|12.17.18 @ 11:46PM|#
    "Cry more bitchboy!"

    About your imbecility? You are proving it 'way more than any comment I can add.

  • IceTrey||

    You're right they're all bad.

  • C. S. P. Schofield||

    Were I the mayor of a city being extorted in this fashion, I would make a public announcement calling for volunteers to help the silly sonofabitch pack.

  • daftarsbobethb188||

    look good

  • Fooseven||

    This article eeds a few dozen more basketball references to really tickle the twine and beat the buzzer!

  • Sevo||

    TuIpa|12.17.18 @ 11:09PM|#
    "Sevo behaves like a DIAPER DANDY BABY!! He's a Dipsy Doo Doucharoo!!! He's an asshole with a CAPITAL A BABY!!!"
    Fuck off, Hihn. Oh, and how did it go when you told the Koch brothers that I was nasty to you? I'm still waiting.

  • Sevo||

    OMG, Hihn has yet to learn how to link a comment!
    Do you think that might be the reason someone named Koch laughed at the pathetic piece of shit when that pathetic piece of shit whined about being called a pathetic piece of shit?
    Naah! The folks didn't bother laughing; they ignored the pathetic piece of shit.

  • DenverJ||

    You two should just get a room already

  • Sevo||

    Hihn-fected with hihnsanity. Do you think anyone is fooled?
    Fuck off, Hihn.
    BTW, as with turd and Tony, I encourage you to assume I in no way wish you a happy holiday season. To fucking ignoramuses like you and the others named, I hope you die a painful death between now and then, you pathitic excuse for humanity.

  • Eddy||

  • IceTrey||

    "He's so tight he squeaks when he walks."

  • Deconstructed Potato||

    You know this is a real #libertarianmoment because some new strain of hihnsanity is fouling up the comments to distract from it.

  • The Real Jose||

    Here's a link directly to the lady's comments:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PeE2iwFPqzI&t=1569

    She's a ball busta in the best sense of the word.

  • Wearenotperfect||

    "The team's owner, Robert Sarver, has threatened to leave town if the city doesn't kick in a significant portion of an estimated $230 million"

    I know of another millionaire who resorts to extortion to get what he wants from tax payers!

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