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Too Pricey?

April 24, 2013 Leave a comment

Going to a college football game nowadays is a pricey proposition, but the price on a ticket does not reveal the full expense, not even close. Certain tickets might state their list price at $45 per ticket, but in reality, the ticket could cost up to $900. Because demand has exceeded supply, universities have come up with their answer to the personal seat licenses: If you want the best seats in the house at a Division 1 college football game, chances are you will have to pay for the rights, often thousands and thousands of dollars a year, to buy them.

Tennessee Head Coach Phillip Fulmer

During the 2004-05 school year, the University of Tennessee’s athletic department raised a whopping $25 million, primarily tied to ticket purchases, to help counterbalance the football program’s $64 million budget. With so much money at stake, Tennessee head coach Phillip Fulmer e-mailed over 38,000 season-ticket holders, apologizing for the team’s “unacceptable” season. Because the athletic department is charging so much per ticket to counterbalance the budget, the team is going to have to play well in order to continue selling out games and to continue raising more and more money.

Tennessee is not the only college football team with this same issue. In order to sit on the 50-yard at the University of Florida football stadium, fans would have to make a yearly donation of $12,000! Just to have a decent seat at a football game, not only do fans have to pay for the actual ticket, which is far from cheap, but they also have to make very large donations to the football program. The unfair aspect? Someone who has been sitting at the 50-yard line since the time Steve Spurrier was quarterback in 1966 has to pay a per-seat fee of only $400, according to Doug Brown, director of the school’s Bull Gator program.

College Football Supply & Demand Chart

Because there are only a certain number of seats per stadium and several thousands of people want the tickets, why not sell the tickets for ridiculously high prices? The demand for college football tickets has nearly doubled or even tripled the supply per stadium. Even though schools are constantly looking to enlarge the size of their stadiums to compete in the arms race, there are those who are aware that the value of donations is based on how hard it is to get in to the stadium. When the demand outweighs the supply, wouldn’t you raise the price of the product too?

Supply and Demand is an area of economics that very much interests me. If supply is high yet demand is low and if demand is high yet supply is low then there is a problem that needs to be solved. Very rarely is there equilibrium between supply and demand, and that is a very fascinating aspect of economics. In economics, there is always a problem that needs solving.

Acknowledgements:

Tennessee Head Coach Philip Fulmer Picture: http://www.wrcbtv.com/story/20250698/ex-vols-coach-fulmer-entering-hall-of-fame

College Football Supply & Demand Chart: http://www.teamspeedkills.com/2013/1/23/3904466/has-college-football-peaked

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Your Vote Is Your Voice

May 15, 2012 1 comment

Throughout our Government and Economics course this year, we spent a great deal of time focusing on elections, specifically the essential question, “Do elections express the hopes and concerns of average Americans?” With the 2012 elections coming upon us quickly, voter participation is a huge part of average American citizens expressing their needs hopes and wants for the future of this country. However, in recent elections, there has been a lack of voter participation (the Illinois Primary is just one example) causing the voices of the citizens to vanish.

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Americans want to express their opinions, but there are many distractions and difficulties when it comes to voting, causing a lack of voter participation. One example is attitudinal change, which is increased distrust and alienation. Negative attitudes towards politics are increasing year after year causing a modest turnout. Americans are becoming less and less confident about their own role in changing the government so they simply choose not to vote. What Americans do not realize is if they do not vote, their voice has no chance of being heard.

Another example that causes less and less voter participation is the Lifestyle Change Theory. This theory talks about how our lives are just too busy and we are too distracted to really jump into politics. This argument, all in all, suggests that we are too distracted by the media, new technologies and our jobs to be involved in politics. If American’s let their lives get the best of them and they choose not to vote, they will have no impact on the election.

Lastly, the role of the news media today seems to have a significant impact on the lack of voter participation. Today, anything that grabs the public attention seems to be fair game to the media, but people feel the media is attacking politicians for coverage and popularity, whereas in the past, the politician’s personal life was kept out of the news. When people only hear only the negatives about the candidates, it causes a lack of confidence in the candidate and causes the people to not want to vote. 

In this November’s presidential election, votes will be crucial.” Campaign participation in all its forms, from voting to watching debates, is likely to continue its downward slide” according to Thomas E. Patterson, the Bradlee Professor of Government and the Press at Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. American’s everywhere deserve for their voices to be heard, which is something that has had an impact on me throughout my time in Government class. Voter Participation will be essential in the 2012 presidential elections – people need to vote for their voices to be heard.

What Really is the Key to a Successful Campaign?

April 23, 2012 3 comments

Throughout my time in Government & Economics at Parish, I have had the honor of delving into the operations of our government in America. I have learned so much about how our government functions and I have a much greater appreciation for government then I ever thought I would.  We were told at the beginning of the second trimester that we needed to become acquainted with our government in order to grow and become conscientious citizens. One of our activities in class that has helped me grow into a more assiduous citizen was the Campaign Commercials activity during our elections unit.

In this day and age, we live in a world solely based on technology. Campaign commercials and other forms of media and technology have always been a vital component during the election process, and are even more essential today. Campaign commercials can simply make or break a candidate’s vocation. Persuasion and music are two fundamental components that can aid in making a campaign commercial successful.

Picture from Jennings Social Media

Persuasion is to induce a belief by appealing to reason or understanding. Another form of persuasion is directly attacking the opponent. Campaign commercials are the candidate’s attempt at swaying the opinions of the general public in order to gain both support and votes. In Al Gore’s “Accountability” commercial from 2000, the issue projected throughout the ad is increasing the number of teachers in schools. The main idea of the ad is visibly evident. The central issue is projected clearly, while the importance of the issue, smaller class sizes and more interaction between students and teachers, is stressed systematically throughout. In Nixon’s “McGovern Defense” commercial from 1972, Nixon demonstrates and discusses very methodically, every single flaw of the McGovern Defense Plan.  This form of persuasion, of attacking the opponent, is a brilliant way of gaining support. Persuasion is probably the most important tactic in creating a successful campaign commercial.

Equally as important as persuasion, is the use of music throughout a commercial. In Reagan’s Prouder, Stronger, Better” commercial, the first thing I notice is the music in the background. The music in this commercial evokes a sense of hope and a sense of pride in America. By creating music that creates emotional sentiment, the audience is instinctively drawn. Senator McCain’s “Ambition” commercial from 2008 provokes a different kind of emotion from the music. The music in this commercial evokes a sense of fear and worry in Obama’s plans and ideas. This kind of emotional effect is equally as commanding when used appropriately.

As demonstrated above, the different motives within campaign commercials all have the same intention in mind – to accumulate as many votes as possible. Successful campaign commercials are the ones that sway the general public and gather the most votes. This activity has really helped me understand how important campaign commercials are to the election process.

Acknowledgements:

Picture:  http://www.jenningssocialmedia.com/blogged/social-networking-friends-politics-facebook-ads-work-political-candidates-favor/attachment/social-media-political-260/

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