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The Billionaire Boondoggle: How Our Politicians Let Corporations and Bigwigs Steal Our Money and Jobs

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6 hours

Summary

The first comprehensive look at how politicians let the entertainment industry bilk taxpayers, hijack public policy and hurt economic investment, starting and ending with Trump.

It is widely believed, that a city in possession of a fortune must be in want of a partner who will drive economic development and thus be worth a substantial dowry of tax abatements, subsidies, and grants. These partners always prove faithless, though, especially when it comes to the entertainment industry. Never date an actor, as they say.

From stadiums and movie productions to casinos and mega-malls to convention centers and hotels, cities and states have paid out billions of dollars to the world's corporate titans in an attempt to boost their economies, create new and better jobs, and lure well-known events such as the Olympics and the Super Bowl to within their borders, not to mention give officials a chance to have their pictures taken with celebrities. That Big Entertainment drives bigger economies is a myth, however, one that has nonetheless permeated every facet of policy making despite the overwhelming evidence that it results in a raw deal for the taxpaying public.

In The Billionaire Boondoggle, Garofalo takes listeners on a tour of publically-subsidized corporate America to explain how that myth came to be, how much money America's elected officials throw away, and why courting Big Entertainment just courts disaster.

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