Eric Church Screws His Fans, Bites the Hand That Feeds

"Ticket scalping" is a good thing. It's good for fans, it's good for performers, it's good for promoters. It's good, period. Jeffrey Tucker explains why at FEE  and I'll weigh in at the end of this post with a boring personal anecdote on the topic, but just trust me on it for a minute.

As is usually the case with popular performers on tour, "secondary market" sellers, aka "scalpers," bought up a bunch of tickets for Eric Church's "Holdin' My Own Tour."

As is not usually the case, Church canceled 25,000 tickets that he believed to have been purchased by "scalpers." The fans who bought those tickets retail? Well, maybe they'll get their money back, maybe they won't; maybe they'll find a way to attend his concerts, maybe they won't. Quoth a Church spokesperson: "Ticket scalpers got their money back, and we would expect that scalpers would in turn refund their customers. But with ticket scalpers, you never know!"

If they don't, then it's just this simple: Eric Church stole the opportunity to see him perform that his fans paid their hard-earned money for.

Even if they do get refunds, and even if they do manage to find other tickets, he tried to screw them good and hard, in the name of helping them and maybe even in the genuine belief that he was helping them.

Whether he's a low-down dirty thief or just abysmally ignorant of some pretty basic economics, the result is the same. But if the latter, hopefully someone will do him, and his fans, the favor of sitting him down and educating him. Shouldn't take more than 15 minutes if he's teachable.

OK, my scalper anecdote:

Back in 1995, I wanted to see R.E.M. on their Monster tour, at Sandstone (now the Providence Medical Center Amphitheater) in Bonner Springs, Kansas.

This was 1995, long before Internet ticket sales was the usual way of doing things. What you did was:

  1. Find out what day and time tickets were going on sale and what the phone number was to order them over;
  2. Sit at your phone hitting redial for, quite possibly, several hours and hope to get through before the tickets were sold out. Luck of the draw.
Which is what I did, and after three hours or so I got through and got tickets. Two of them. Both "lawn seat," because everything else was sold out. $25 per ticket. But I had planned on buying, and was willing to pay for, much better seats.

So my wife and I arrived at Sandstone a couple of hours before the show. We found a scalper and, in exchange for our two lawn seat tickets and $100, got two tickets for the 13th row, not far from center stage.

They were worth every damn penny. And I bet the scalper sold those lawn seats at the very last minute for $5 or $10 a pop, just to unload them, to some of the kids who were hanging out waiting for that moment and who couldn't have afforded to see the show at all unless they got that kind of deal.

Everybody won. The band and the promoter filled the house (and got a lot of their money up front instead of in dribbles) and four people got to see the show from the seats they wanted and/or could afford.

A Prediction

Milo Yiannopoulos resigned his position at Breitbart "News" today in the wake of the weekend's fake "supports pedophilia" scandal (for my detailed opinion on that, listen to yesterday's KN@PP Stir Podcast). He claims he wasn't forced out and that the decision was his alone, but the writing seemed to be on the wall there (he lost a speech booking at the Conservative Political Action Conference and a book deal over the matter as well).

Prediction: Yiannopoulos will, in the very near future, launch a new site centered around his own brand. That site will quickly eclipse Breitbart in popularity.

Thanks For Asking! -- 02/21/17

Last week's AMA thread went up late, so this one's going up early. Yes, I understand that doesn't really make any sense. But I was thinking about needing to remember to put up the thread tomorrow and decided to just put it up today.

This thread and the episode of The KN@PP Stir Podcast episode it will feature in are, as of now, unsponsored. If you'd like to reach a few dozen dedicated libertarians with your product, service, web site, cause, whatever, hit the contact form and talk at me. The price per episode ( for which you get audio mentions at the beginning and end of the episode and a text link in the associated Thanks For Asking! post) is $5.99.

Thanks For Asking! works like this:

  • Ask me anything (anything!) in the comment thread below this post; and
  • I'll answer in comments, on the podcast, or both.

So get with the questions already.

OK, How to Resist?

The Stasi's Main Administration for Struggle Against Suspicious Persons US Department of Homeland Security and its ICE and CBP sub-gangs have formally announced new guidelines for escalating the pace of their mass abduction operations across the country.

If you think this won't affect you, you probably haven't spent much time in the totalitarian Constitution-free zones along the gangs' formal turf lines (e.g. "the US-Mexico border"), which were bad enough 30 years ago and are almost certainly worse now. Expect to start seeing the "immigration enforcement" equivalent of DUI checkpoints, especially in cities with substantial Latino populations.

It seems to me that an absolute minimal response requirement is negative social preferencing. ICE agents and other evil-doers shouldn't be invited to social events by their former friends (who should have stopped calling them as of now anyway). They shouldn't be able to get tables in decent restaurants, and if they walk up to fast food counters or sit down on bar stools in uniform, the employees should just silently point to the places' "we reserve the right to refuse service ..." signs. Their clergy should refuse them communion until and unless they're willing to cease, desist, seek forgiveness and make amends. That kind of thing.

I am going with the assumption that few of us will ever find ourselves in a position to actively intervene in an ICE raid in the moment, but being ready and willing to provide refuge as possible to any fleeing victims would be a righteous activity. If you know someone who's particularly at risk, it might be time to have a talk about bugout/communication/rendezvous procedures.

What else? Ideas?

The KN@PP Stir Podcast, Episode 117: Looks Like Spencer's All Tuckered Out

This episode of The KN@PP Stir Podcast is brought to you by, your best source for antiwar news, viewpoints, and activities (actually it's brought to you by an anonymous sponsor who told me to pick something to promote, and is it).

In this episode:

  • Thanks For Asking (antiwar sources; time travel; these are a few of my favorite things; LP2020)
  • Why do I have to keep defending Milo Yiannopoulos?
  • Spencer trolls ISFLC 2017.

Thanks For Asking! -- 02/17/17

This week's AMA thread, and the podcast to follow, are sponsored by -- sort of. An anonymous sponsor picked up the tab for two episodes and left the choice of what to promote up to me ... so why not mention that your best source for antiwar news, viewpoints, and activities is running its quarterly fundraiser and needs your suppport?

So ...

  • Ask me anything in the comment thread below this post; and
  • I'll answer in comments, on this weekend's podcast, or both.

Side note: Yes, I've been slacking off on the number of blog posts lately. In fact, I've been fighting writer's block and struggling just to get three Garrison Center op-eds out each week. But I can feel the end of the slump coming on.

The KN@PP Stir Podcast, Episode 116: Don't Look, Ethel! (Too Late)

This episode of The KN@PP Stir Podcast is brought to you by an anonymous sponsor who said "promote whatever you like." So I'm promoting Liberty For America, a fantastic site and publication brought to you by Dr. George Phillies and focused on the internal affairs of the Libertarian Party. If you want to know what's going on at the operational level in the LP (for example, how much money is coming in, how much is going out, and what it's being spent on), Liberty For America is indispensable.

In this episode: Thanks For Asking! (Mulvaney, Calabria, and Pence, Oh My!; Rational Review News Digest; Molypew; Nazism; DeVos; JFK assassination) :: A brief rant on fashion and corruption.