Shady business: Along with your profile of Ultra Music Festival's Russell Faibisch ("Big Beats, Bigger Profits," Jose Duran, March 14), you might want to also publish the shortlist of who got paid kickbacks along the way. Notice how the problems with dead grass in the park and the crowd issues downtown disappeared from the city's discussion of whether to allow a second weekend of Ultra when the festival agreed to pay the city another $500,000? I guess someone's kid needed braces or that college fund needed seed money. Jimbo99
No Way, Bud
Money-hungry hypocrites: Well done, Miami New Times, on making the decision not to hand over records related to Coral Gables anti-aging clinic Biogenesis to Major League Baseball ("Fuhgeddaboutit," Chuck Strouse, March 14). I live in the Tampa/St. Pete area and I'm frankly tired of hearing regularly from MLB Commissioner Bud Selig and his office about how miserable our baseball stadium is, combined with threats to move the team if they don't get a new stadium (at the taxpayers' expense). I'm hoping we can fix things here and not lose the team; however, Selig and MLB are not in the business of working with fans or cities. awats
Be part of the solution: I, too, don't agree with what Selig has done as commissioner, but this is an extremely poorly reasoned piece of writing. You enumerate the many things that baseball has done wrong over the years, such as poorly evaluating and dealing with an event more than 100 years ago (the Black Sox scandal) and racial issues. But racial issues in particular were hardly unique to baseball; they plagued all facets of American society in those years that you detail, and they continue to do so. So you criticize the sport that helped the process of tearing down racial boundaries by being one of the most important large organizations to integrate at an extremely early, pre-civil-rights date for having racist people involved. Right. Then you seem to implicate Bud Selig on those issues? Your article reads like you're blaming Selig for American racism and gambling scandals. Your bigger issue, it seems, is that baseball has many problems and does a bad job of fixing them. Fine. You've correctly identified that. Baseball and Selig did a remarkably poor job of handing steroid issues in the '90s and '00s. But by denying baseball access to your records, you're refusing to help baseball get better at fixing the same kinds of problems. You've correctly identified an issue but, for whatever reason, seem to just like having something to whine about or feel powerful about, and not being progressive and helping to fix it. It's a lot easier to stand back as a bystander and do nothing while attacking those who want to make progress. It's a lot harder to be part of that progress. I challenge New Times to do so. Roger782
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San Diego also got screwed: Kudos for standing up to Bud Selig. Unfortunately, the Marlins franchise isn't the only recent example of a franchise getting the screws from the commissioner. MLB allowed the San Diego Padres' old ownership group to place a clause in the Padres' new television contract that resulted in $200 million in upfront money going into the pockets of the previous ownership group because they were able to include this $200 million in the purchase price of the club. The result: The Padres still have outstanding debt obligations on a stadium that Padres executives (at the time of the proposition vote in 1998) promised would allow the team to sign marquee players, while the former owner walks away from a deal in which the team sells for $720 million more than it did when he purchased it in 1994. changethepadres
Money talks: The obvious answer to why the city doesn't punish the Nine Mile Music Festival for trashing Virginia Key ("Getting Wasted," Tim Elfrink, March 14) is that it brings in revenue. If politicians are not interested in protecting the Urban Development Boundary from being pushed farther and farther out, swallowing the Everglades and destroying our drinking water, why would anyone assume they care about the mounds of trash thrown into the bay, ocean, and streets? Politicians care about money. If the trash were to affect tourism, only then would it become a priority to clean it. SurewhateverUsay