Seriously how can you expect me to be coherent at times like this? I just can't sleep dammit.
Here's what I've got:
I want to raise the question about some event centered around OU, UW match-ups in either Football or Basketball.
Whats the point?
I don't mean that in a sarcastic way like "Why Bother?" I mean it in the serious way that, if we held the event what would we be trying to accomplish? What would the message be?
I think that for any event like that message becomes pretty important because otherwise we just seem like we're pouting. The team is gone, OU has a better program, what do we care about them? Is this just sour grapes trying to rub something in Clays face or are we giving him a chance to gloat if his Sooners nab a win?
If we do an event it has to be taking advantage of this rivalry and its obvious attention to work towards getting a team, political accountability, or some other purpose. It can't just be "We're pissed off lets get drunk and vent."
Tell me your thoughts on the event.
Secondly I met with the Governors campaign staff after holding some talks with her operational staff. You asked so I'll tell you what I can.
The Governor has always been supportive of our cause. Her desire to get this done is not an issue. What is the issue is how to get it done. Her people, like many others, claim that we are barking up the wrong tree and that it is not her we need to convince, but the general public and the legislature. She is right that the legislature is the problem, she is wrong that she does not have greater obligation to influence them.
Overall I think it was a good meeting. We identified some things that have to be sorted out and talked about setting goals for the process. I know many people want more, but its not going to be that kind of a process.
There is a critical issue here that applies to the Gov, the Mayor, and just about anyone politically. As a political issue the NBA and professional basketball is very much a lose/lose for them. The issue is very misunderstood by the general public and they don't get good publicity for being supportive. The issue does not poll well, and generally they are damned if they do, damned if they don't when it comes to getting us money.
We have to decide whether how we are we are going to influence them. It will be some mix of direct and aggressive pressure, and a re-positioning of this issue in public. Look for us to talk a lot more about Seattle Center, the need to take advantage of this $150M, and how an NBA tenant is just one part of an overall plan for Key Arena that deserves support. If we can use that context, get some good polls, and create a more balanced partnership than just sports fans.
The direct pressure side is trickier. Again this issue polls terribly and there is a feeling that "the hit has already been taken" on this issue. Getting back into it can mean a huge poltical loss for people with little gain at all if they have already been labeled as the person to blame.
So we need to create a message for the Governor that does not say "You are to blame, we hate you and will vote you out." but instead says "The ball is in your hands and we're watching you closely to see how you handle it." I also think that the Rossi message of "This issue is symbolic of your ability as Governor to get things passed in legislature" is one that has a lot more water than the Governor would like to admit.
Sports fans are in a tricky spot. Our righteous anger is what gives us some leverage right now, but uncontained it is also the thing that makes people say "I'm just going to stay the hell away from them because the fire is too hot and I don't want to get burned." Right now our anger gives us a "nuclear option" where we could just make this issue so front and center, point so many fingers that it hurts everybody, and hope somebody decides the situation needs to be resolved just to avoid the messiness. We've seen in the last year that the world has grown more tolerant of messiness...
Plugging away at the lobby group. Not enough time in the day.
One last thought. I think we should very quickly start a movement to gather and retain season ticket priority numbers and steward them on the fans behalf. Do you think people would be responsive at this point or are they too burnt out?