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Opening Day With The Ricketts Family!

The immensely wealthy family patriarch will spend the day licking his chops.

He bought a baseball team for his son and wants his return from the fans and taxpayers. How joyous!

Let's take a look.

1. They sell every ticket, every game, win or lose! Now you've got a business!


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2. Against government spending except when it's for them.

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3. "Chicago Cubs owner Tom Ricketts gave a talk to the all-powerful Naperville Area Chamber of Commerce yesterday," Neil deMause writes on Field of Schemes, "in the course of which he said this about the need for public subsidies for the renovation of Wrigley Field:

"There's 30 teams in baseball, and there's really two ways that you finance your stadium. One model, which about 25 teams use, is that you have a public agency build and provide you a stadium and you pay rent and expenses and some sort of amusement tax. The five other teams use a different model where they cover all of their expenses, but they don't pay any taxes. Believe it or not, Chicago has a hybrid model where you cover all of your own expenses, remain totally private and pay the second-highest taxes in the league."

"This is . . . I hate to say 'lying,' so let's just say an interesting interpretation of reality."

4. Todd Ricketts throws away perfectly good hot dogs and then lies about it.

5. Mesa Voters Approve Blank Check For Cubs.

6. "Brokerage TD Ameritrade agreed Monday to pay $456 million to settle a lawsuit involving the marketing of a debt class that ended up crippling investors," CNN reported.

7. "Under the terms of the management incentive plan of TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation, for fiscal year 2012, the base salary of Fredric J. Tomczyk, president and chief executive officer of TD Ameritrade, was increased by $200,000 to $700,000, and his annual incentive target was increased by $100,000 to $5,600,000," Footnoted reports.

(From 2005:

("Online brokerage firm Ameritrade's (AMTD) recent proxy had a number of interesting disclosures. The first to jump out was that over 80% of all options granted to employees last year went to one person: founder and chairman J. Joe Ricketts, who received 750,000 options @ $10.90 a pop under an amended employment agreement signed last August.

("The proxy notes that Ricketts, whose two sons are also senior executives at the company (though thankfully not on the compensation committee) will not receive any additional options until the company reinstates a stock option plan for senior executives. Meanwhile, despite the loss of options for those top executives, they still managed to receive hefty bonuses last year, despite the stock falling modestly during fiscal 2004. CEO Joseph Moglia and Ricketts each saw their bonuses increase nearly 50% while CFO John MacDonald saw a nearly 100% increase in his bonus.")

8. "In October 2009, a trust that Joe and Marlene Ricketts established on behalf of their family acquired a 95-percent controlling interest in Major League Baseball's Chicago Cubs and Wrigley Field, as well as 25 percent of Comcast Sportsnet Chicago."

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Comments welcome.

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