07 August 2013

Darkness on the Edge of Town #nlpoli

Here’s what St. John’s mayor Dennis O’Keefe told city council on Monday, according to the Telegram on Wednesday:

O’Keefe proceeded to talk about the fact the city lost the opportunity to hold a Springsteen concert this summer because it and the promoter couldn’t come up with a suitable venue.

This summer.


Bruce toured North America last year, 2012.

This year all his gigs have been in Europe.

What gives?

Doc seems to be seriously confused about dates.  Maybe this lost Springsteen concert story is just a brilliant disguise for some promoters who just want public cash for a venue and and a big hunk of land out there in the jungleland beyond Mount Pearl. 

You can’t fault the promoters, mind you.  They just want to make a buck and if there are a bunch of politicians willing to sink hundreds of millions of dollars of public money in a project that – so far at least – has no financial plan to show it is viable, then you can hardly blame them for sticking their hands out.

All the same, the stink of hype is heavy on this one.  In the light of day,  a cautious man – or woman for that matter  - in St. John’s would do well to wonder if they are going to be held up without a gun.

After all, it’s not like taxpayers haven’t recently been stuck with billions of dollars of costs in a heavily-hyped project with no viable financial prospects outside of the public spending they were forced to make.

The recent secrecy cloak that has dropped on the city matches the one  that one of the Springsteen promoters dropped around  the provincial government- and that over-hyped billion dollar mess.  Taxpayers should be highly suspicious right from the get go.

We’ve had enough of these sorts of glory days that were supposed to lead to the promised land but turned out to be a one way ticket to the financial badlands.


h/t to Mark Watton via Twitter on the concert dates.