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$tadium MADNE$$ in $eattle

Posted Tue, Tuesday/June 29, 1999; 7:51 p.m. PDT

Royal fans in Kansas City staged a “Big Market/Small Market” protest earlier this season. Now, Seattle Sports Fans, have the BASES LOADED for a "$tadium MADNE$$" protest. Everyone knows what $tadium MADNE$$ is, but for surfers in other parts of the country, here is Seattle’s $afeco Field version.

In 1995, during the Mariner’s great "Refuse to Lose!" run, the voters narrowly rejected a stadium-funding measure for a new Major League Baseball park. In 1996, the ownership group announced it was selling the team, since without a new ballpark it could not compete. The politicians stepped in and convinced the Mariners to reconsider. In 1997, the politicians "voted" to build the ballpark primarily through public financing, with the Mariners contributing $45 million. In 1998, the Seattle Mariners received $40 million from Safeco Insurance Company and vowed to pay all cost overruns without trading players, scalping their tickets, or seeking a bailout from taxpayers. Now that the Safeco Field Grand Opener is within clear view, $60 million of the $100 million overrun is left owing. The Mariners and politicians have a dispute over contractual fiscal responsibility. The Mariners have requested mediation; the politicians voted to refuse the request. MADNE$$!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Fans In The Stands
Fans Fill Seats
So who can put a quick end to the MADNESS? Seattle Sports Fans, that’s who! Who has a better chance of getting the parties to the table and helping identify which is contractually responsible? Who has the leverage to hold that party to its fiscal responsibility without suits, counter-suits, and appeals? Who has a BIGGER stake in the outcome than Seattle Sports Fans? Seattle Sports Fans have been forced to live with the decisions of the Mariners and politicians up to this point. From here on, Seattle Sports Fans deserve to have a voice in the discussions and resolution of $afeco MADNE$$.

John Ellis, Mariner Chief Executive, called for "a third party." That’s the ORIGINAL PURPOSE of WeTheFans.com. To be “Recognized as the Third Player at the table of the four major sports.” The Internet is the ideal place for public/private/political disputes like this that require quick resolution. To that endeavor, WeTheFans.com invites the Seattle Mariners and the Public Facilities District to show Goodwill to Seattle Sports Fans by agreeing to: 1) recognize this Site as "acting arbitrator" of the contractual dispute; 2) debate all points in this public forum; 3) allow the FINAL DECISION (based on contractual content and intent) to be determined by a vote of Seattle Sports Fans at WeTheFans.com.

John Ellis
Mariner's Chief Ellis
The Mariners can state its position. The PFD can then post its rebuttal. The two sides can continue posting points and counter points. Seattle Sports Fans will be able to see the facts; make comments on WeTheFans.com's bulletin board and discuss them in chat room sessions. Then, by a mutually agreed upon, specified date, WeTheFans.com will conduct an Internet poll of Seattle Sports Fans on which position is contractually correct on the basis of the facts. And "presto," this MADNE$$ will be over! No lawsuits!! No counter lawsuits!!! No long trials!!!! No longer appeals!!!!! No crying!!!!!! OVER!!!!!!! “There’s no crying in baseball,” anyway.

Well Mariner Fans...Baseball Fans...Seattle Sports Fans, RIGHT NOW is “put or shut up” time! We’ve been reading about it. We’ve been hearing about it. We’ve been talking about it. NOW, how many are PREPARED do something about it? How many can we say are UNITED in our formal invitation to the two parties? How about 46,621? That would get everyone's attention, right? Then join the "$top $afeco MADNE$$!" protest right now and let’s get in position IMMEDIATELY to BE HEARD! We’ve paid for the newest, coolest, most expensive ballpark in history! WE MUST be heard!

There’s the wind-up...here’s the pitch...and it’s...

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