Providence – Former Red Sox pitcher Curt Schilling’s video game company, 38 Studios, has laid off all of its employees in the wake of financial difficulties, according to a key company consultant. The company, which had close to 400 employees… received a $75 million loan guarantee from Rhode Island in 2010 to move from Maynard to Providence. But Rhode Island officials held emergency meetings after the company was two weeks late on a $1.1 million payment this month and asked the state for millions more in aid to stay afloat. The firm is asking Rhode Island for more money, applying for $8.4 million in film-tax credits, which it could then sell to other companies. The company didn’t have enough cash to meet its payroll on May 15… With its marquee product more than a year away from release, 38 Studios has been unable to find an outside investor to rescue the company. “It’s an unfolding tragedy here in Rhode Island,” said Rhode Island Governor Lincoln Chafee in an interview in Providence. Chafee said that Schilling’s plea for more aid from the Rhode Island Economic Development Corp., which administers the loan guarantees to 38 Studios, fell short… Schilling’s company did not inform the governor’s office about the mass layoff. Chafee said the state hasn’t been able to confirm how many workers were let go. State officials have also struggled to get other critical details since 38 Studios ran into financial trouble. “Communication has been very difficult,” Chafee said. “It’s come to the point where we have to verify what we hear.”
Some balls on Schilling, huh? First he has no shame about doing a 180 on everything he supposedly stands for by sucking $75 million out of the RI taxpayer’s teat. Then, when he can’t make payment ONE, his solution is… ask for more money. Gee, I’m not as smart as him and don’t have his legendary business acumen, but maybe I can try that. I’ll call my lender and say “Hey, you know how you haven’t seen any mortgage payments from me? Well I figured out a way to come with the money. You give it to me, then I’ll have enough to pay you. Boom! Problem solved…” The irony in all this is that the brain-addled dopes in the RI government who went along with this disaster probably told themselves that Schilling would make it in the video gaming business because he’d bring the same skills he brought to baseball and all that nonsense. Well they turned out to be right. It takes the same balls to go into Yankee Stadium on a Frankenstein ankle and win Game 6 as it does to go up to the people you fleeced out of $102 million and ask them for more money.
Besides the people of Rhode Island, the ones I honestly feel bad for are 38 Studios employees. I got laid off once, with a brand new mortgage and a pregnant wife and I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. Wanting to work and having no job to go to is hell. And even if they are collection of socially awkward gamers and shut ins, they didn’t sign up for this. They probably assumed Schilling knew what he was doing. And that even if the company ran into trouble he and Schondra would dig into the $100+ million he made in baseball like George and Mary Bailey putting up their honeymoon cash to keep the Building & Loan open. Obviously they were wrong. On second thought, I think the ones I really feel bad for are all the teachers, firemen, cops and DPW workers Rhode Island will have to lay off to pay for Curt Schilling’s Donkey Kong company.
PS. The only good thing that’s come out of this fiasco is that all of a sudden, Schilling’s not talking. His silence didn’t come cheap, but it still might be worth it. @JerryThornton1