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President Jamie McCourt

Mar 16, 2010, 8:28 AM EDT

The latest from the McCourt divorce:

Jamie McCourt considered whether to parlay her high-profile position
with the Dodgers into the pursuit of political offices, including
president of the United States, according to documents filed by her
estranged husband in the couple’s divorce proceedings . . . In a December 2008 e-mail, Dodgers executive Charles Steinberg
presented her with “Project Jamie,” a seven-page action plan that
included this line: “Goal: Be Elected President of the United States.”

The dynamic in which the arrogant, idle rich treat political office as one of many jewels in the social crown and expect that it can be obtained by virtue of celebrity and networking alone is an old one, so there’s no sense in attacking it with gusto here. What I’m struck by is the fact that Ms. McCourt apparently had highly paid executives on the Dodgers payroll whose job, apparently, was to direct such vanity projects.

I know this divorce stinks for Dodgers fans, but look on the bright side: without it we wouldn’t be getting such an educational glimpse into the waste and extravagance afoot in the owners’ box of a major league baseball team.  While we may need to hold our noses while observing it, perhaps the McCourts’ example will prove useful the next time one of these plutocrats pleads poverty and tries to shake down city hall for something.

  1. Jonny5 - Mar 16, 2010 at 8:44 AM

    I bet they even fought about which one of them would get to run for POTUS many nights before bed. Well they’re doing a fine job of running the Dodgers into the dirt ,why not the country? That is what presidents of this country tend to do anyway. Excuse me while I go vomit.

  2. Charles Gates - Mar 16, 2010 at 8:54 AM

    And here I am thinking about how bad this current President is managing budgets and fiscal responsibility…

  3. BC - Mar 16, 2010 at 9:14 AM

    Gosh, she sounds like my ex-wife. They should have tea.

  4. Grant - Mar 16, 2010 at 9:19 AM

    Aaaand we’re off to the political races!

    I will now avoid this post like I do Sunday Night Baseball.

  5. Jason @ IIATMS - Mar 16, 2010 at 9:25 AM

    Why would she want the POTUS gig? It pays like sh*t compared to her Dodgers fleecing, er, job.
    Gross revenues vs. net revenues. Difference: The McCourts lifestyle upkeep

  6. BC - Mar 16, 2010 at 9:30 AM

    Hey, Linda McMahon (yes, that Linda McMahon, of WWE fame) is running for the Senate in my state. I guess anything is possible.

  7. Old Gator - Mar 16, 2010 at 9:34 AM

    What really terrifies me is who her vice-presidential running mate might have been. Thank Buddha for our irrational fear of the French, or her name might have been Paris….

  8. Jonny5 - Mar 16, 2010 at 9:38 AM

    It’s not the pay Jason, It’s the ability to decorate the white house.

  9. madhatters - Mar 16, 2010 at 9:38 AM

    The worst part about all this is the waste cash leaking through the Dodgers organization. You tell me they couldn’t have taken some of the money from these vanity projects and applied it towards scouting and procuring valuable free agent talent.
    It’s terrible that the Dodgers play in the 2nd most valuable market in the country and play 2nd (financially) the Angels. I can only imagine what Epstein, Amaro, or Cashman could do with Dodger dollars at hand.

  10. Dug - Mar 16, 2010 at 9:44 AM

    Gates,
    Uh, the financial crisis we are now digging out of…Bush’s fault. Lets not forget who drove the bus into the ditch.
    The turn around that is definitely working….Obama’s admin is trying desperately, with some success, to get the friggen bus out of the ditch.
    The Dodgers fiasco…..The McCourt’s combined egos and penchant for excess.
    You wanting to turn everything into politics is wrong, but you can’t speak unanswered. That’s what got us here in the first place.

  11. madhatters - Mar 16, 2010 at 9:49 AM

    Funny and/or Sad?
    How a post about an over zeaous wife of a baseball owner started a tirade of politically Blahhhh.
    Case in point why I America is screwed. A simple story about celebrity idiots with aspirations to be in politics turns into sophmoric pot shots by the left and right.

  12. Jonny5 - Mar 16, 2010 at 10:08 AM

    You really buy that? So gullible. It’s not who runs the country, it’s how it’s run. And the President actually has very little to do with that. What has he done besides grow our Debt by bailing out major money grubbing corporations (which would be pissing off liberals if it were a “conservative” doing so)? Wake up. The quotes are because there is no such thing when it comes to pissing away our money.

  13. ralphdibny - Mar 16, 2010 at 10:22 AM

    Well, as long as we’re talking politics . . .
    I wish that stories like this could put an end to the ridiculous idea that businesses run by the government are by definition wasteful bloated messes while those businesses run by the private sector are made magically efficient by the invisible hands of Adam Smith.

  14. Charles Gates - Mar 16, 2010 at 10:32 AM

    Certainly there are private sector businesses that are wasteful and run poorly. And there are probably people in government that run their areas efficiently, however, as a general rule, government run programs are less efficient, in an economical sense, than those managed by a private enterprise. I give you UPS vs. USPS.

  15. Old Gator - Mar 16, 2010 at 10:33 AM

    That’s cause free marketeers think free marketeerism is a natural law as opposed to a cultural institution. Overturning myth into nature is a favorite sport of ideologues of all stripes.
    .
    Replying to comment from Johnny5: yeah, but the original bailout bill was passed under Bush, but NAFTA and much of the banking deregulation that led to the mortgage bubble bust was a Clinton project, but, but, but….come on everyone, let’s all link arms and march down to the Tyrell Pyramid and sing a rousing rendition of “The Internationale!”
    .
    We now return you to our regularly scheduled baseball blog.

  16. Jonny5 - Mar 16, 2010 at 10:45 AM

    I know, and that was kinda my point there Gator. “Conservatives” would have done it as well to the outrage of liberals everywhere. It’s not who runs the Gov’t, it’s HOW it’s ran. Kinda like trying to fill a collander with water without plugging the holes. Meanwhile we are conditioned to fight each other while propping up two very corrupt political parties screaming “mine isn’t as bad as yours”.

  17. ralphdibny - Mar 16, 2010 at 11:11 AM

    The postal service is actually a perfect example! UPS and FedEx are more “efficient” because they don’t try to serve everyone. If you live out in the middle of nowhere (sorry, rural readers!), UPS will simply send the package by USPS–it’s cheaper than driving a truck way out just for one delivery. IF USPS didn’t exist, if we privatized the postal service, either costs would skyrocket or many people would be cut off from mail service. But our society decided many years ago that everyone should be able to send and receive mail. A good rule of thumb–if everyone should have access to it, then privatizing isn’t the way to go. Private fire fighters? Didn’t work. In other words, I completely agree that government run businesses are generally less efficient. But that fact isn’t because of incompetence. It’s because serving everyone will always be less efficient than only serving those who can pay a bunch for your product.
    Oh, and baseball baseball baseball.

  18. IdahoMariner - Mar 16, 2010 at 11:30 AM

    huh. I was gonna go down the path of “sheesh, divert some of that money to scouting and minor league payroll (seriously, those single A guys make nada, zip, zilch, bupkus), and let’s not feel sorry for the owners when they say they don’t have enough cash to get the bat you need…and definitely when they are shaking down the city/county/state for the cash to build a new field…
    but apparently I’m on the wrong blog.

  19. Hermie - Mar 16, 2010 at 11:43 AM

    Red Sox fans are completely unsurprised that The Dentist’s fingerprints are all over this.

  20. Charles Gates - Mar 16, 2010 at 11:48 AM

    Please reconcile:
    I wish that stories like this could put an end to the ridiculous idea that businesses run by the government are by definition wasteful bloated messes while those businesses run by the private sector are made magically efficient by the invisible hands of Adam Smith.
    and
    In other words, I completely agree that government run businesses are generally less efficient.
    Private businesses aren’t magically efficient as a result of a sprinking of Adam Smith’s corpse dust, they’re such because they choose to serve customers where it makes economic sense to do so. That’s my point.
    I do thank you for your argument. I’m always up for a bit of intelligent back-and-forth.

  21. JoeT - Mar 16, 2010 at 6:01 PM

    There somehow seems to be this conception that Frank McCourt is making a lot of money and spending it foolishly. Under Fox Entertainment, News Corporation, from 1998 to 2004; the Dodgers went 509-463 and lost 25 to 30 million dollars a year. Fox had planned to turn the Dodgers into a money making machine but didn’t have the financial savvy needed to make it happen. Jamie McCourt didn’t think the team was a good investment so she traded any interest she had in the team for other considerations, like the co-owned property, etc. The Dodgers have gone 513-459 since McCourt took over the team in 2004 and are making money. This is a bigger accomplishment than Fox had with the team and is better than 24 other teams out there are doing. The Dodgers are a success story and will continue to improve while many of the other teams will spend theirselves into oblivion.

  22. Old Gator - Mar 16, 2010 at 6:56 PM

    Then again, I suppose if you stand back and observe this celebrity-infested trashloid culture of ours, perhaps it’s not surprising that Jamie McCourt has been deluded into thinking that she might be able to make a run at the prize (although when you look at the last couple of Presidents, the “prize” looks more and more like the wrong Holy Grail – choose wisely, Indy, and all that). After all, she may lack Sarah Palin’s extensive experience in economic management, fiscal theory and geopolitical maneuvering – but she can’t possibly be as stupid.
    .
    Can she…?

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