F1 Boondoggle

Yesterday’s AAS Metro&State lead article headline was misspelled. “F1 track could reap millions” should have read “F1 track could rape millions.”

And this morning the hype continues with “Proposed track would be a giant” in a blitz to convince readers that it’s a good idea for the State of Texas to commit $25 million in annual support for this boondoggle of the rich and famous.

Who needs F1 when we have I35? You can get all the excitement you need simply trying to stay alive. Maybe it’s just me, but the issue of disclosure is just the tip of the iceberg as Titanic Texas steams into partnership with Full Throttle Productions.

The excuse that to release all the documents filed with the comptroller by Full Throttle Productions would reveal proprietary corporate and financial information is nothing more than a smokescreen. If you approach the State of Texas asking for a handout to finance your plans for anything, why shouldn’t you be required, along with the comptroller, to lay it all on the table?

Does anyone really  think it’s okay for fat cats drinking brandy and smoking cigars in back rooms to make deals like this? And if you don’t think that’s what’s happening, you aren’t paying attention.

Do yourself a favor and read today’s article. Race promoter Tavo Hellmund addressed an overflow crowd of more than 400 at the Headliner’s club in downtown Austin, supposedly as the result of  “an overwhelming response to tell you the truth.” Glorious predictions for the future flowed from his mouth during the speech, and the ordinary citizens of Texas who don’t attend such gatherings are supposed to swallow his blather as if it’s the gospel truth, so help him God.

But he doesn’t want to tell you everything. Oh, no. He has to keep some things secret. And when he jets into the sunset with his profit and the citizens of Texas are left with the aftermath, who in government will admit to having made a mistake? And who in their right mind thinks that what you see now is what you’ll get?

Color me dubious, but I’m not buying it.

On second thought, I will be, along with the rest of you, when one budget crisis after another makes the contribution of $25 million per year to a race track lose its luster.

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