Labor Freedom in SportsSubmitted by Jao171 on Sat, 09/08/2012 - 17:42
If you’ve been craving a blog that combines the excitement of the sporting world with the principles that define the Austrian school of economics, then today is your lucky day. The erudite and talented writer S.M. Olivia, a columnist for Saturday Down South, an SEC football website, and contributor to LewRockwell.com and Reason Magazine, launched the blog Man, Economy, and Sport this week. Of course, if you followed us on Twitter and Facebook, you would have already been aware of this news.
Interest in the ideals of liberty and the Austrian school of economics is increasing rapidly across college campuses thanks to the Presidential campaigns of Ron Paul in 2008 and 2012. It is a brilliant move by Mr. Olivia to bring together two areas where the youth of this country are very passionate, liberty and sports. Very few, if any, have made the attempt to use free market principles to analyze the sports world. The site will be a great way to introduce others to the principles of the Austrian school and for those familiar with free market economics to expand their knowledge base when reading S.M. Olivia evaluations of modern sports.
On September 6th Mr. Olivia posted a blog titled, The Value of Labor Freedom. In the post he points out that processes in professional sports such as drafts, restricted free agency, and franchise tags treat players similar to intellectual property. The owners are able relinquish their claim on the property (players) at any time, but players are not afforded the same rights. This is an excellent point by the author and an opinion that is not shared by many in the media. The players, by agreeing to these labor agreements, are harming their chances of earning their maximum income and are driving capital away from the players, towards the owners and sponsors.
Shockingly, the author follows this scathing review of professional sports by praising the authoritarian NCAA as a bastion of labor freedom. It is probably not surprising to those who have read my previous articles that the sanction obsessed NCAA, is not an example of an organization that endorses due process or believes in the fair, ethical treatment of its members.