Saturday, April 19, 2008

Ticket please

I've always thought we should cut Gov. Benigno R. Fitial some slack. It's hard to see how anybody could have done better with the horrendous economy he inherited. There have even been stabs at streamlining the government.

Sure, I don't like his tendency to sell the farm to anybody who slides down the pike. 'Never met an investor he didn't like'. His Top Secret privatization scheme for the Commonwealth Utilities Corporation raised more red flags than the Division of Environmental Quality on a Saipan beach.

Now I'm wondering if the pressure is getting to him. Case in point: his reaction to the closure of Hollywood Theaters. Just raise the ticket prices, says the Governor who bills himself as the man who understands business. Who's he hanging out with?

For a minimum wage earner, it's a day's wages to take his kid to the theater and buy some snacks. Evidently customers are staying away in droves. That's not going to be fixed by charging more. Movies are a luxury, one that people are showing they can do without when they have a hard time putting gas in their cars and paying CUC.

Spokesman and Press Secretary Charles Reyes Jr's response to Rep. Stanley "Old Faithful" Torres about gasoline prices is more what I'd expect. "We understand markets and choose to focus on market economics rather than Huey Long politics." It would be my Quote of the Week if I had one.


Jeff said...

He strikes me in his public comments as completely uncreative and out of touch. He didn't inherit those things. He has the ability to do something to stabilize in flow, if not price, this power plant, and he's completely out to lunch on the situation.

Jeff said...

One other thing, there hasn't been a hit movie in a long time. The third tired repetition of Spiderman is probably as close to it gets on the last one. I like going to the movies, but the vast majority are unwatchable, and only the dopiest movies even made it here in many cases. And most of Hollywood offers is dopey.

Anonymous said...

I have commented on other blogs including links to articles on the theater business. The majority of revenue that comes into a theater to keep it alive is in concessions and as the costs go up to run a theater, this means the number of viewers must go up (to drive concession revenues) or ticket prices must be jacked up 4X. The reality of it is that not too many patrons in this market can afford a movie and all the fixings(concession goodies)..

observing some movie goers, either bringing in their own goodies or not buying from the concessions at all, was not good for the theater..

There are theaters in the U.S. Mainland that charge $1 a ticket just to get them in the door, knowing that they will pay big $$ in the concession stands..

with less disposable income (in viewers pockets) going into the theater, it was inevitable that the theater would eventually shut down.

Thank goodness we still have Kevin's Video / Blockbuster. Two businesses that do not rely upon concessions to stay operable.

glend558 said...

Some local video stores have resorted to pirating movies. Guess thats one way to stay ahead of the game.

lil_hammerhead said...

I thought the exact same thing when I heard those comments Kap.. what kind of business acumen does the Governor actually possess?

After thinking about it awhile, that would have been the first time I've actually heard the Governor provide any "business advice". Perhaps he thought that was sound advice. Perhaps we have assumed too much about the Governor's real business skills. What successful business has he solely owned, operated and made successful? Maybe he has.. I don't know.