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Quips, queries, and querulous quibbles from the quirky mind of Don Kahle

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Week 37, #3

September 7th, 2007 by dk

Tom Kemper came to City Club this summer and began his presentation by answering the first question on people’s minds: Why would developers from red-hot Portland want to invest $180 million on a downtown development in Eugene. Five words: “My partner is a Duck.” This was a month before Phil Knight agreed to invest $100 million in UO basketball. (And make no mistake. Mr. Knight’s money is an investment. His company promotes sports and the new arena will promote sports.) Without the same headlines, these businesspeople are contemplating an investment in downtown Eugene almost doubling Knight’s money, and with less certainty for a good return. All (or at least partly) because Ron Skov “is a Duck.” Howdo we fairly calculate this benefit for the community when we find ourselves wringing our hands over the money spent on athletics?

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One of these four ideas will be developed into a column on Wednesday to be published in The Register-Guard on Friday. I’m asking you to help me choose between them. Between now and the end of Tuesday, leave comments here or send me an e-mail if you’d rather be more private. Or, at the very least, RATE the idea (and the others) so I know which one people like best. No promises, though. This ain’t American Idol. But I will post an entry on Wednesday to say which one I’m choosing (and probably why.) I plan to do this each week — often by Friday, but always by Monday, so visit often and tell me which idea intrigues you the most. Thanks!

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