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(DV) Sandronsky: Sacramento's Giant Steps







Sacramento’s Giant Steps 
How to Be a World-Class City 
by Seth Sandronsky 
July 29, 2006

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The wait is over for the city’s gentry. Sacramento may finally be a world-class city with fresh development. 

How? The usual way, with help from elected public officials behind closed doors. 
Courageously, local lawmakers are lending a visible hand to the Maloof family -- who own Sacramento’s NBA Kings, WNBA Monarchs and Arco Arena where the teams play. On July 25, Sacramento County supervisors agreed by a 4-1 vote to put a measure on the November ballot for a new sports arena in the downtown business district and other local projects to be funded by a quarter-cents sales tax hike. 
This will revitalize downtown. Sacramento’s bold leaders say so. 
Then and only then will downtown Sacramento bloom for businesses and their customers. Take note, American cities. 
And Arco Arena? The building is located in a city floodplain surrounded by weak canals and levees that has become a residential neighborhood. 
Obviously, building a new arena downtown with a regressive tax on working people is far more crucial than funding flood control upgrades, and homeless and youth services. After all, government in our neo-liberal era should exist only to boost the bottom lines of those who deserve it. 
Folks with more capital then they can ever spend in their lives are more deserving than those whose work -- past and present -- has created this mass of capital in the first place. The properly educated know that government should get out of the business of providing for the education, health and welfare of the populace. 
That humanitarian function is for charitable groups. Just ask Warren Buffet and Bill Gates. 
Also on July 25, three elderly men died in downtown Sacramento residential hotels that lacked air conditioning, victims of the record heat wave in Sacramento. They lived and perished blocks from where local lawmakers voted to help owners of sports teams with dollars from wage-earners. 
Let us be clear about the demise of the three Sacramento men during a recent heat wave. You can get such clarity by answering this question. 
Did these recently departed souls bring the public essential services such as professional basketball?  No. 
Therefore, their deaths, while tragic, should not hamper the development of Sacramento as a world-class city, a glorious place of the future, thanks to Maloof Sports & Entertainment and its partnership with local government. It is time to wake up and get real about democracy, Sacramento-style. 

Seth Sandronsky is a member of Sacramento Area Peace Action and a co-editor of Because People Matter, Sacramento's progressive paper. He can be reached at: ssandron@hotmail.com.

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