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Power Rankings

Baltimore City Power Rankings

Photo: Illustrations by Alex Fine, License: N/A

Illustrations by Alex Fine


 

1 Orioles

As of press time, the O’s hadn’t yet taken the field against the Rays down in Tampa. But they’re already flying higher than any other Opening Day in recent memory. Attendance in 2012 was up nearly half-a-million from the previous year (see feature page 13) and The Sun reports that Friday’s home opener is the “second-most-expensive opening-week ticket in the sport,” and that the team’s percentage of merchandise sales since last year has tripled. Let’s hope that the new support isn’t fair-weathered.

2 The Baltimore Sun

Though its future is still uncertain, The Sun had an important, if accidental victory this week. The paper asked Gov. O’Malley’s office for one week of Blackberry messages. The governor intended to withhold the messages due to attorney-client privilege and “executive and deliberative process privileges.” But Raquel Guillory, an O’Malley spokesperson, accidentally sent all the messages from a week in October. In the messages are a discussion of a possible deal between Penn National Gaming and Cordish Companies, the resignation of Coppin State’s president, exchanges about the upcoming referenda, and a complaint about a tuxedo. BCPR thinks these messages—a rare slip-up from a Gov on a roll—are a pretty good holdover until season two of House of Cards.

3 The Catholic Church

It’s been a rough few years for a Catholic Church greatly discredited by sex abuse and cover-up scandals. Then, as if a sign from God, the Aug. 24, 2011 earthquake shook the foundation of Baltimore’s Basilica of the Assumption, America’s first cathedral, closing it for the last seven months. Then, as if by a divine miracle, the Prada Pope resigned and a pope who is at least as concerned about the poor as his shoes took over, and the basilica reopened for Easter. BCPR hopes that this resurrection will usher in a period of major reform.

4 Exelon

Relocating to Harbor Point (now split from Harbor East) from its downtown headquarters a mile north, Exelon is set to benefit from the double tax break of the Tax Increment Financing (TIF) bond funding the overall Harbor Point development and from the 80-percent break available because of the area’s status as a federally recognized “Enterprise Zone.” This week, the BDC began pushing the $107 million TIF to pay for “infrastructure improvements” for the $1.5 billion development. If posh Harbor Point is an Enterprise Zone, wouldn’t every other neighborhood (except Roland Park) automatically qualify, slashing the city’s tax base? Of course not, these are just special favors for the rich.

5 Dr. Ben Carson

He might be a brain scientist and all, but it doesn’t seem like the Hopkins doc/Fox News commentator-in-waiting understands much about logic. On The Sean Hannity Show, Carson compared gay marriage to bestiality and pedophilia. After wide criticism, Carson apologized for his “choice of words,” showing that he’s a coward as well as a bigot. He went on to say “But the point that I was making was that no group of individuals, whoever they are, whatever their belief systems, gets to change traditional definitions.” Really? So in America, Dr. Carson is only three-fifths of a man because he’s African-American? A woman is her husband’s property? And, according to Aristotle’s “traditional definition,” the brain is just a radiator? BCPR thinks Carson’s next surgery should be to ensure that his own brain is working right.

 

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