Bruce Lane

Published: January 29, 2006 at 10:40 AM

The last time I heard some corporate nutcase use that many buzzwords per square inch, it spelled doom for the Commercial Avionics unit at Boeing, and it also heralded their death-spiral from a true aircraft BUILDER to little more than an assembler of aircraft-class Heathkits.

Shapiro sounds like your typical corporate MBA type: Rather than creating the best product or service possible, and simply letting profits follow as a result, he's just out to turn Six Flags into a money factory, and to blazes with anyone or anything that gets in the way of his much-vaunted goal of "shareholder value."

Or, to put it more simply, "Profit at ANY cost!" Talk about self-defeating...

At the risk of sounding harsh, though, I would not mind seeing Six Flags Marine World get rid of what little animal population they have left, and go completely over to a ride-based economy, as it were. When a park chain's CEO becomes that worried about The Bottom Line, I get a queasy feeling in my guts about the long-term quality of the care given to any park's animal population, especially the high-cost critters like marine mammals.

If Shapiro is that desperate to cut costs, I would hope one of the ways he does so is to ship SFMW's animal population off to REAL oceanariums and zoos, places that would be fully committed and prepared to consider their long-term health first, and the cost of providing it second.

Keep the peace(es).

Derek Potter
Writer

Published: January 29, 2006 at 12:35 PM

The only park I could see staying on the list is Great Escape. Being near Wyandot Lake, I could care less if Six Flags owns it or not. They've done nothing to the place for 10 years anyway. Their contract is up anyway. Six Flags New Orleans would be a likely candidate for close, but probably not. I thought that they had a contract with the city that says they have to rebuild or reopen in case of disaster. Plus, it wouldn't look too good if they did that. Kentucky Kingdom has always been a dog, and if Wyandot Lake is any indication of the state of the other waterparks in the chain, than maybe it's a good thing if they sell them to someone who will care about them.

I fully expected the Oklahoma City move to happen. I can't see the new owners leaving their palaces in New York for the comforts of Oklahoma. I really don't see Six Flags being in any position to buy Paramount Parks though. Closings and streamlining aren't enough to raise that kind of money.....and also I just refuse to believe the possibility of Kings Island becoming Six Flags Kings Island.....God help us