Philly’s remaining Vet bills not actually such a big deal as media are making it

I’m going to link to this story about how Philadelphia is still paying for Veterans Stadium long after it was demolished because I’m getting emails about it, and because it’s got some great demolition porn to go with it. But I honestly don’t think it’s worth getting too worked up over: As I’ve noted before, whether stadium debt is paid off before the place gets blowed up real good is just a matter of bookkeeping, not of subsidy politics — if Philadelphia had chosen to pay off all of its Vet bills in cash during the Mike Schmidt era, that wouldn’t have made the place any better or worse of a deal for taxpayers.

As Deadspin notes, Philadelphia certainly seems to have engaged in some curious financing around this deal, to the point where even city officials don’t know how much debt has been paid off. But that would be true if they’d borrowed the money for new fire trucks as well as for a stadium. Though admittedly YouTube videos of fire trucks wouldn’t be as much fun to watch, or to link to.