On the basis of this Professor Mazzucato seems entirely unaware of even the simplest findings of the subject she herself is a professor of:
Imagine explaining to a Martian how, on Earth, grown men kicking a ball around a pitch earn so much more than heart surgeons, let alone school teachers (both who save and improve lives). Odd.
— Mariana Mazzucato (@MazzucatoM) June 1, 2019
As our Swindon correspondent explains:
“Well, the simple answer is that it’s about supply and demand. Lots of people want Messi, Neymar and Ronaldo to play for them, they have deep pockets, and so they get into a bidding war and pay huge amounts of money.
Sport exacerbates this because the key deliverable of a sportsman is beating other sportsmen. It isn’t like hiring teachers. The teachers who are 90% as good as the best teachers are still worthwhile having. They still deliver something people want. Maybe they get a lower salary, but it’s likely to be reasonably proportionate – they get 90% of the salary of the best teachers. Because being the best is intrinsic to success in sport, everyone prizes the very top players.
You see this reflected in salaries as they are not linear but exponential. In 2018, Chelsea, the champions had a wage bill of £219m. By the time you get to Southampton in 8th place, it was around half that, at £112m. Relegated clubs were around £64m. The average in the Championship is around half that. When you get past that, to the likes of Swindon Town and Rushden and Diamonds they’re earning less than a doctor, let alone a surgeon. We don’t value most players that highly.”
There’s even a whole section of labour economics which looks at this very point. Tournament economics. Which explains why all the revenues and then some from the top sporting teams flow through to the players, the owners don’t make a profit. Which then further explains why the cartels in American sports do ensure that capitalist profit, why the UEFA “fair play” rules are there to limit capitalist losses in pursuit of titles and so on.
This is actually a point that Ms. Mazzucato’s own profession has discussed, explored and nailed down. At which stage just enjoy the sight of a public intellectual admitting total ignorance of the point under discussion.
And Mariana doubles down:
Funny how non economists love/preach simplistic "supply & demand". I wrote "martian" because its crazy & against common sense. The fact some countries do cap sports salaries, and/or share revenues between teams, shows its not deterministic, but societal choice. Markets are made! https://t.co/1J7ySfQeXU
— Mariana Mazzucato (@MazzucatoM) June 2, 2019
The effect of capping the players’ wages is to increase the profits of the owners. Mazzucato is actually arguing in favour of the capitalists gaining at the expense of the workers, of increasing the expropriation of their labour by hand and mind. Which is an interesting thing for a progressive to be arguing, isn’t it.