Kid Rock Embarrassed to Be a Republican

The artist known as Kid Rock endorsed Mitt Romney but now says he's "embarrassed to be a Republican." Because of their stance on paperless tickets, naturally.

The artist known as Kid Rock endorsed Mitt Romney but now says he’s “embarrassed to be a Republican.” Because of their stance on paperless tickets, naturally.

TV Guide/YahooNews (“Kid Rock: I’m Embarrassed to Be a Republican“):

Even though Kid Rock went red in the last election, he’s not entirely on board with the current GOP agenda.

The rocker, who threw his support behind Mitt Romney in the 2012 election, is now sounding off against the Republicans, who have supported various acts of legislation in Congress to raise concert ticket prices.

“That’s one of the times I’m f—ing embarrassed to be a Republican,” Rock tells Rolling Stone. “It’s f—ing Republican lawmakers passing those laws, you dumba–es. They already did it in New York and they’re trying to do it in Michigan. I’ve even called some of those guys to try and stop it.”

Of the embarrassing things Republicans have done of late, this was not one that had heretofore appeared on my radar screen. They’re trying to raise the price of concert tickets?

The Rolling Stone article “Kid Rock on His $20 Tour and ‘Dumbass Republicans’” has more:

Rapino and Rock came to a deal that allowed for $20 tickets for every seat in the house. “I said to them, ‘Look, I’ll go in as your partner. Don’t guarantee me a dime; if nobody shows up, I’ll lose money.’ It costs us $125,000 to show up with our crew and whatnot,” he explains. “I also said, ‘But I want to share beer, parking, hot dogs. Let’s put the money in a pot at the end of the night and figure out, based on the numbers, what I’ll get paid.’ Even if it sells out, I’ll take a pay cut. Fortunately, I’m able to do that.”

However, the first two rows of each venue will not be sold to anybody. “I’m going to send my roadies to find people in the back of the place to sit there,” Rock says. “I have big-time buddies that can get front-row seats for anything. They know the right people. Not my show, though. We don’t care who you are, you can’t get those seats unless we select you.” In places where it’s legal, rows two through 18 will be only available via paperless ticketing. Unfortunately, many states have outlawed the practice, which infuriates Rock.

“That’s one of the times I’m f-king embarrassed to be a Republican,” he seethes. “It’s f-ing Republican lawmakers passing those laws, you dumbasses. They already did it in New York and they’re trying to do it in Michigan. I’ve even called some of those guys to try and stop it.”

Oddly, the rationale for banning paperless tickets is to protect consumers.

Unlike paper tickets, e-tickets printed at home by consumers or digital tickets delivered to smartphones, Ticketmaster’s so-called “paperless” tickets use the purchaser’s credit card and state ID as the ticket to a live event. This prevents fans from transferring tickets easily or at all.

Further, if consumers wish to give away, donate or sell their ticket, under Ticketmaster’s system they must use Ticketmaster’s reseller, pay Ticketmaster’s fees and accept Ticketmaster’s resale price terms — regardless of whether that price is higher or lower than fair market value. Consumers have no choice but to comply with whatever pricing and fees the company enforces – or waste their ticket.

In a 71-page paper released earlier this year, the Washington, D.C.-based American Antitrust Institute, with which I am a senior research fellow, called on the Federal Trade Commission and several state attorneys general to investigate Ticketmaster’s restrictive paperless system because it denies consumer choice and stifles competition.

The institute also called on state legislatures to act to protect consumers and preserve an open marketplace. Michigan lawmakers now have that opportunity thanks to legislation recently introduced in the state Senate.

[…]

Proponents of restrictive ticketing argue that these restrictions are needed to prevent scalping, but their true motivation is to take a cut of the profit from the secondary ticket market by blocking competition and charging additional service fees. By preventing consumers from selling their tickets directly or through other vendors and setting a “floor” on resale prices, these restrictions enable Ticketmaster, already the dominant ticket seller for live-events, and other ticket companies to extend their control over consumers’ tickets and take more of their hard-earned money.

I don’t have any strong views on whether Ticketmaster ought to have  a right to restrict tickets to those who purchased them, as airlines and some other service providers do. But a position taken by state legislators on this issue strikes me as an odd reason, indeed, to turn against a political party—especially one at odds with so many of other of his views.

Additionally, I’m bemused that the source of his tirade is that it’ll make it harder for his road crew to hand select people for the good seats at his concerts.

FILED UNDER: Popular Culture, Quick Takes
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. Kelsonus says:

    Kid Rick is Libertarian
    I imagine, like many of us, he saw Romney as the lesser of 2 evils
    And now the election is past, he’s back to his ‘roots’

  2. Tony W says:

    This is sadly typical of the inconsistency found among many modern conservatives, who fail to complicate the discussion.

  3. Al says:

    This War on Paper, just like the War on Drugs and the War on Poverty and the War on Healthcare is just another way that the US is about to become a third rate Banana Republic. If Old Navy was a stock then I’d short it.

  4. Franklin says:

    I didn’t read the linked article, but it seems like the issues here stem from the fact that Ticketmaster has no competition.

    Artists spend an inordinate amount of time starting new record labels. Perhaps a few of them should join forces and start a new ticket distributor instead. Kid Rock can be the ringleader, maybe his buddy Nugent will join in.

  5. john personna says:

    @Franklin:

    Bit-ticket!

    (Seriously, I don’t mind when companies climb to monopoly. I just think that when they reach monopoly they should reap extra oversight and regulation. Congratulations Bill Gates, great effort, now unbundle your products, etc.)

  6. matt bernius says:

    @Kelsonus:

    Kid Rick is Libertarian
    I imagine, like many of us, he saw Romney as the lesser of 2 evils
    And now the election is past, he’s back to his ‘roots’

    And that demonstrates how, generally speaking, elections tend to make most Libertarian’s* Republicans.

    At least Kid Rock is honest enough to call himself a Republican in the off years.

    * – Unless of course said Libertarians can actually, at the very least, imagine themselves voting for a Democrat.

  7. Mark Ivey says:

    Doing a team up with Romney diden´t pay off Kid?

    Bummer mann…..

  8. Rick Almeida says:

    @Kelsonus:

    Kid Rick [No relation – ed.] is Libertarian
    I imagine, like many of us, he saw Romney as the lesser of 2 evils
    And now the election is past, he’s back to his ‘roots’

    Except, of course, he identifies as a Republican. You’re probably right, though…I can easily see him as a low tax and legal pot glibertarian.

  9. Socrates says:

    “Artist”?

  10. Marcus Porcius (@Marcus_Porcius) says:

    Kid Rock is a dufus. Republicans are passing these laws? In New York and Michigan? Does Kid Rock know who runs those states? How about New Jersey, about to do the same thing?

    And he’s ranting about a policy invented by Ticketmaster, who he criticizes for service fees. Has he seen the service fees to resell paperless tickets? Is he really that stupid?

    Ticketmaster came up with the idea to monopolize ticket sales, period. And I suspect that Kid Rock gets a cut of all the “secondary market” that paperless tickets lock up for Ticketmaster.

    Either that or he’s just plain stupid.

  11. grumpy realist says:

    @Marcus Porcius (@Marcus_Porcius): I think it’s the latter.

    (But–as said–typical. All for “freedum” until it bites your own ass.)

  12. Marcus Porcius (@Marcus_Porcius) says:

    @Marcus Porcius (@Marcus_Porcius): Just to clarify, Republicans do CURRENTLY run Michigan, but they’re not exactly the Tea Party.

  13. RobZ says:

    “Kid Rock is a dufus. Republicans are passing these laws? In New York and Michigan? Does Kid Rock know who runs those states?”

    Last I knew, he was still living in Michigan. I’d be surprised if he didn’t know that the Governor of Michigan is a Republican and that the majority of both the State House and Senate seats in Michigan are held by Republicans.

  14. RobZ says:

    “Republicans do CURRENTLY run Michigan, but they’re not exactly the Tea Party.”

    “Not exactly” is reasonably close.

  15. al-Ameda says:

    He needs to stop the whining and show some initiatve – He needs to send Pamela Anderson up to Lansing, Albany, or Capitol Hill, and get those laws changed.

  16. M. Bouffant says:

    I’d be embarrassed to be Kid Rock.