Ratto: 49ers' stadium details lack substance

July 6, 2011, 8:58 pm
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Ray Ratto

Once again, the 49ers have thoughtfully informed us that they got two more approvals to do something to do with their potential stadium in Santa Clara.

Theyre good at that Heres more inconsequential stuff that makes us look like were on the job.

This time, the news was that the ESA (Ethereal Stadium Authority):
Approved the procurement process that will be utilized to hire subcontractors to perform some 500 million in construction trade work for the stadium.Approved a marketing sales agency to sell seat licenses.
Approved a pre-opening contract with the same people who have done the concessions at Candlestick Park since the early 90s.Approved two resolutions about the design of the ballpark.
But none of these have any real value until the press release that announces the following:
We have the money.We rented the equipment.
Theres a hole in the ground that were making bigger and bigger every day.
Without that one, all these others dont amount to much, and the fact the 49ers are so eager to tell us about these relatively trivial issues makes the absence of the big one more striking.Heres the thing, and its something the 49ers and As should both know, understand, and live by on stadium news: Weve been down all these roads before, going back to the mid-80s. Were not stupid, and were not easily distracted by minutiae.We know that stadia come down to two things: Where the money is, and where the shovels are. Stadium plans rise and fall on these two things alone, and the rest of it is trivia.If the 49ers would be so very kind as to inform us about those two things, well listen to everything else they have to say about all the other nonsense where the trees are going and what kind there will be, how much hoof will be in the hot dogs, when the first exorbitant deposit on the seat licenses will be due, all of it.But until they can manage that elemental news, what they are giving us suggests an elaborate ruse to make us think things are progressing in a meaningful way when they are not. I mean, if youve got everything you need and are starting construction on Day X, why wouldnt you say something like, We have everything we need and were starting on Day X? Why wouldnt there be a huge release, with a full-on presser with logos and people wearing business suits and hard hats and goofy grins? Why wouldnt there be fireworks, for Gods sake?Thats what were looking for here. Proof of money and proof of tools. They have no reason to hide the proof if they have it, and if they dont have it, who gives a flying flaming damn about a concessions contract for a stadium that doesnt exist?Anyway, thanks for the heads-up, kids. Now let us know when you have something to actually tell us.

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