As you may know, President Trump announced his intention to move our Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, so as to recognize the city as Israel’s capital. Predictably, this deed set off a firestorm of reaction around the world. It would be hard to recognize which was the bigger anguish –the perpetual conflict in the Middle East or those that complain about anything Trump.
Not to be insensitive, as I’m not Jewish or Palestinian, but that fracas has been going on so long now it’s hard to recall why they're fighting. There is an old witticism about what two events, presently going on today will still be going on a thousand years from now. The answer is that farmers will still be grumbling about the price of beans, and the people of the Middle East will still be killing each other.
This announcement by Trump so incensed most of the world they decided to gather in the United Nations Building in New York to denounce, stomp feet, and hurl invective's about our mothers. When that tantrum didn’t work, they held a vote, over Ambassador Nikki Haley’s stern warning, and approved a nonbinding symbolic resolution to demand countries not move their embassies to Jerusalem. They did so by a vote of 128-9… against us! Thirty-five other countries wisely abstained the vote.
If you are following along, 128 countries want to tell us where we should or should not locate our Embassy in another country. It could be understood more clearly if we were moving our Israeli Embassy to, say Baghdad, but moving 67 kilometers to the east in the same country? Rightly, the vote upset President Trump and Ambassador Haley, as the US pays more than its fair share for the UN’s existence. It also gives aid to nearly all of the countries voting against us. While feeding the world, they bite our hands…again.
Research about our largess to the other nations who sided against us was revealing, if not mind-bending. You would do well to remember, this is our tax money the government bestows to them on our behalf, and might explain some of our financial straits. (See: spending problem - not tax problem) You can get these numbers on the website USAid.gov.
Get this: Afghanistan voted against us – we give them folks $5.1 Billion per year and too many soldier’s lives protecting the rest of the world from ISIS! China is on this list at $42 Million. Why are we giving them financial aid – they practically own us? We bequeath Cote d’Ivoire $162 Million per year – not only do I not know where it is, I can’t pronounce it. We provide North Korea aid to the tune of $2 Million dollars - while they threaten to nuke us! Does Maxine Waters know this? Germany and France get $10 Million to make fun of our president. Iceland gets nothing, so they have every right to vote against us. One wonders though if they just wandered in from the cold and raised their hand for coffee. Japan, our buddies…at $21 Million per year, voted against us. Even Russia has their hand out for $17 Million per year. You know Comrade Putin is sticking the money in his pocket for walking around money. And while it is no surprise they would vote against us, keeping a stiff upper lip and all, it was somewhat a surprise that England takes $4 Million per year. The money must be for a down payment on the next royal wedding, a gala to which you’re not invited. (Don’t feel bad, your president won’t be invited either.)
The total of all these handouts, courtesy of us tax-paying schmucks, is $24 Billion per year. And this does not include the additional $2.5 Billion given for UN peace-keeping missions or the $1.2 Billion per year we kick in just to belong to this club. We just negotiated a $285 Million cut, roughly what we give Somalia to irritate us, to the 2018-2019 budget of $5.5 Billion for the UN. Of the 122 million of us actually paying Federal taxes, we each “donate” $227.05 to this organization to give away to people who don’t like us.
Most strangely of all on the list of countries that voted against us though was Sweden. Not so much that Sweden is on the list, but why would they be receiving the odd amount of only $1,269 from us? I just can’t help thinking this is an overdue bistro bill from one of Michelle’s Obama’s junkets at tax-payer expense.
The recent spate of people scaling the #MeToo bandwagon has caused me to possibly reconsider. After some deep contemplation, I may have been wrong about defending Al Franken in a previous commentary. You see, I was a "victim" too and might have cause to join the Movement of the Year. What follows is a true account…as I can recollect.
Circa 1968; Having chronic health ailments which seemed to be a mystery at the time to the medical community, I spent a great deal of my childhood in the hospital. Every childhood bug would manifest itself within my disorder, placing me in a hospital bed, fighting both the disease and its effects on my condition. The result was that I was kind of a scrawny, wimpy kid.
My dear mother, trying to strengthen me, enrolled me in an acrobatics class with my sisters. Seemed like a good idea at the time. Unfortunately, the acrobatics class was at a dance studio on Fifth Avenue in Kankakee. Now, as Denny Yohnka used to tell you, growing up in Chebanse in the 60's really wasn't too unlike Andy Griffith’s Mayberry. And once my peeps got a hold of the information I went to a dance studio...well, you can imagine the rest of that story. Let's just say life got a tad more difficult.
One summer night a bunch of us were walking home from a Little League game. (You walked home back in the 60’s - it's what we boys did as there was no one to drive us) Having nothing better to do, my "buddies" Johnny and Joey (not real names) were riding me pretty good. It’s what boys do, too. By the time we got within a block of my house, a fight broke out. Boys do that also. In front of many teammates, Johnny and Joey proceeded to beat the tar out of me, while the rest of the guys cheered. I don't want to give you a false impression that it took two of them to whip me, but for whatever reason, both piled on. I went home bloody, ashamed, shocked, and humiliated. I spent the next two days in the hospital.
As I look back at that situation 49 years ago, I still feel somewhat humiliated. My teammates laughed at me! Dad had no medical insurance and the hospital stay cost a fortune. While I can't say the beating altered my life, it’s disconcerting now when I think of it. I quit acrobat lessons, as my parents now had hospital bills to pay and there wasn't enough money left for lessons. Maybe I would have been a famous acrobat or gone to the Olympics. Or, perhaps the beating was a blessing in that the hazing stopped. And within a week of returning to Little League, all had been forgiven.
I thought of this when I read about the moron who foolishly put his hand on Taylor Swift's derrière during a photo shoot, which included his girlfriend. Taylor sued, won a dollar, got her mug on Time magazine, and the guy was fired from his job. Really! Was the act worth clogging up our court system and for the man to lose his career? What real crimes were delayed while Ms. Swift jammed the incident through the legal system with her high-powered attorney? Couldn't she have just said something to the moron's girlfriend at the time the lecherous act was committed, and let the nature of the relationship take over? Couldn't she have just stopped the photo op and not allowed the couple the picture they wanted? She certainly held that “power.”
As I think about it, I suppose I could bring Johnny and Joey to court for my pain and humiliation. I still sometimes see Johnny, who has worked in a warehouse for 30-plus years and never caused a public problem. Joey became a policeman and is probably near retirement. But I doubt either of them is wealthy nor running for government. I certainly don’t need the extra notoriety. There simply is nothing to gain all these years later. I bet they have a different version of the events 49 years later. I guarantee you they won’t admit it took both of them to whip me.
I do remember some of the guys standing around cheering, which included Joey's brother, who went on to some success. Maybe I could sue the entire gang, especially Joey's brother. After all, he’s famous and laughed at me all those years ago. Perhaps, that might be a way to soothe my humiliated soul.
Or, I could just chalk it up to another of life's speed-bumps and leave the over-burdened court system to focus on more serious crimes, like actual cases of rape and murder. Seems to be the more adult way of handling this situation.
I've been a subscriber to the Chicago Tribune for over 25 years. I originally started because of the expanded pro sports coverage, particularly the Bulls and Michael Jordan. That ship sailed but I’ve stayed, primarily because of the Cubs and Hawks. While not a Bears fan, their football coverage is top rate as well.
It was there I discovered the incomparable Mike Royko, whom taught me the "Chicago Way." After Mr. Royko passed in 1997 I began reading John Kaas, who now very capably holds the position of token Conservative and best writer of the paper. I credit Royko, Kaas, and comedian Dennis Miller for any affinity I have for writing cynical common-sense commentary.
Established in 1847, the Trib is the eighth largest newspaper in the country. Circa 1855, when owned by General JD Webster and Dr. Charles Ray, it endorsed itself as the Conservative arm of the Republican party in the Midwest, backing Abraham Lincoln, railing against slavery, and later the chronic corruption of the city's politicians.
Then in 2008, amongst financial woes and editorial turn-over, the paper made a decidedly "left" turn. They endorsed "home-town" presidential candidate, Barack Obama, their first Democratic endorsement in 161 years...a move that surely made Lincoln, Webster and Ray turn over in their graves.
In their endorsement of Obama, they erroneously declared, "We do, though, think Obama would govern as much more of a pragmatic centrist than many people expect." Well, how did that turn out in retrospect?
Having drank the Kool-Aid, it appears they have not been able to find their way back to their roots. They had already shot their editorial mouth off in March of 2016 about not endorsing Donald Trump when they stated he was "not fit to be president." Intuition, or perhaps suspicion, undoubtedly kept them from endorsing Hillary Clinton. Having painted themselves into a corner, they then endorsed pot-smoker Gary Johnson.
And then a funny thing happened - 63 million people and the Electoral College voted in the man "not fit to be president," Donald Trump. And there the Trib Board sat, with egg all over its collective Liberal and faux-Libertarian faces.
So, what does a major newspaper, who once ran the headline, "An American Paper for Americans" under a US flag, do? They unleashed the Editorial Staff from Hell to dig under every rock; to scour the Earth for any morsel to prove the American people wrong for having the audacity to elect Trump. Editorial staff members and guest contributors, and even some of the sports writers, piled on to pontificate daily on how mistaken those 63 million Americans were, and how horrible Mr. Trump is doing.
If it weren't for Donald Trump, one member of the Editorial Board would have absolutely nothing to write about. Under the guise of "opinion" this writer gets paid to scrape together a twice-weekly column for the Trib - his only job seemingly to poke and vilify the candidate he and the Trib were so wrong about. Sour grapes?
I also wonder how much money the Trib pays the Washington Post to re-publish their daily anti-Trump blather. Perhaps they would make more profits if they were to invest the money paid the Post into Trump's stock market. Mr. Bezos, founder of Amazon and owner of the Post, really doesn't need Trib money, so maybe they might do better to hire some editorial writers who don't blindly conform to liberal media demands.
In a 2007 edition, the Trib published its statement of principles and philosophy. Among those principles they stated: "The Chicago Tribune believes in the traditional principles of limited government; maximum individual responsibility; minimum restriction of personal liberty, opportunity and enterprise. It believes in free markets, free will and freedom of expression." Pardon me, but what part of that statement does not represent the Trump presidency?
What has happened to the Editorial section of the once-great newspaper? As a flagship journal for the state of Illinois, a state leading the nation in nearly every negative category, located in what is widely reported to be the murder capital of the country, why expend so much energy berating a President that half the nation is satisfied? There is more than enough wrong in this state and the city to keep honorable columnists occupied. Perhaps we all would be better served if they were to help pull this state out of the financial quagmire it finds itself, rather than sitting in ivory towers throwing barbs at the national candidate they didn't pick.
To do otherwise, seems like fiddling while Rome burns.
In anticipation of your W-2 and 1099 tax forms coming next month, now might be a good time to point out something. The Census Bureau recently released information concerning the five wealthiest counties in the US. All of them just happen to surround Washington DC. In fact, nine of the top twenty wealthiest counties connect to our nation’s capital. Pause and let that paragraph sink in.
Surprisingly, or perhaps sadly, not one county in the Midwest made the Top 20 List. Moreover, 17 of the 20 counties were on one coast or another.
The top five, in order of the wealthiest are: Loudoun County VA – median income $134,464; Falls Church VA - $115,244; Fairfax County VA - $114,329; Howard County MD - $113,800; and Arlington County VA - $108,706. Four out of five right in Virginia? The average across the United States for household income is less than half at $55,322.
The Census Bureau calculates household income as the combined income of every resident of the house, regardless of source, over the age of 15. Although not specifically mentioned, I surmise this would include only sources of legal income, and not junior’s flourishing basement pot business.
We taxpayers sent $3.3 trillion dollars to the IRS in 2015. The IRS spent $1.1 billion on salaries, administration, a ridiculous pension for Lois Lerner, and chasing us for money. That left $3.2 trillion sent to Washington DC for politicians to spend our money as they saw fit. They spent it…plus another $327 billion.
Now, my dear late father used to call me a suspicious “person.” Actually, he didn’t use the word “person”, he used another word which would have indicated his marital status at the time of my birth. I wonder if he saw the irony? Be that what it may, I prefer to consider myself “righteously dubious.”
Consider average citizens - well, about half of us - send 30-40% of our hard-earned money to the IRS in Kansas City every year. After processing, they forward the rest of the money to Washington DC. And somehow, at the same time, the people living in collar counties around Washington DC just happen to have the ability to earn twice as much as the average schmuck in the rest of the country. What do you suppose they do, or know, to make twice what we do? What are the statistical odds that the people able to earn twice what average people do can do so right there around our nation’s capital, where trillions of dollars are flowing every year?
Take the county sitting on the top of the heap, Loudon County in Virginia, for example. It has more than doubled in population since the year 2000, at about 384,000 people today. Heavily Republican since 1952, when the population was less than 25,000, it exploded in size starting right about 2008 – the same year Barack Obama was elected. That year it also became a Democratic county, grabbed the top spot for median household income, and has held on to that distinction since. The other four top counties are all heavily Democratic voting blocs as well, going all the way back to the Clinton years. You would do well to remember that the next time your favorite Democratic Congressman tells you the Republican tax cut plan only benefits the rich.
Obviously, we have no way of knowing how the people of Loudon County, or any of the other counties, make money. As long as they aren’t doing it with my tax money, and are doing it legally, then I have no misgivings whatsoever how they make a buck. In fact, more power to them.
However, a check of the Loudon County Economic Development website might be somewhat enlightening as to why it is so successful. It boasts 60% of their working population has at least a Bachelor’s Degree. That in itself is quite impressive. It is the corporate home to the NFL’s Redskins. (They dropped the name Washington, as it was embarrassing.) And it has a Trump National Golf Course – I’m impressed…and jealous.
But there were a couple of other items the website lists as “Advantages” that caught my “dubious” eye. The first was “Easy access to Washington DC area suppliers, federal agencies, customers, and labor pool. Federal Agencies? Additionally, “the largest number of internet, satellite, and defense companies in the nation.” Did you notice the word “defense” in that last sentence?
Some things you can prove, other things you just know.
Or perhaps, dad was right.
I just finished preparing a Christmas list for ya. Sorry it’s late, but there was so much to ask for I actually had to shorten the list. So please, Dearest St. Nick, look into that boundless bag of yours and see if perhaps these gifts might be available. I’ve been good, seriously…I’m too old to do otherwise.
First, might you gift former President Obama, and his appointees, some decorum so as to get out of President Trump’s way to allow the man to effectively run the country? You see, Mr. Trump has a pretty full agenda for Making America Great Again, and it just doesn’t seem dignified that a former president can sit like a vulture on Trumps’ shoulder, making remarks and inciting cronies to obstructively act on his behalf. Some would say that not only is it unprecedented and egocentric, it’s Machiavellian.
Then there is that matter with Lois Lerner, lately of the IRS. She’s expressed concern for her safety. Is there any chance you might be able to fit her for a bright orange jumpsuit and place her in a Federal facility? You know, one that will be safe for her. Mike Huckabee mentioned possibly Leavenworth. Maybe put Hillary Clinton and Loretta Lynch in with her to ensure their safety as well. I’d be delighted to hold on to the key, you jolly old elf.
And Father C, any possibility you can find Colin Kaepernick a job, possibly at the North Pole? We hate seeing that photogenic young man continuing to be so unemployable. While looking around in that bag, see if you can find his former boss, Roger Goodell, something resembling a spine. Perhaps then we can get back to our regularly scheduled NFL schedule.
Got anything that helps drain a swamp? Quagmire-obstructionists, including the Largemouth Schumer Bass, the dreaded Pelosi Dingbat, the Dark McConnell Creature, and the Easy-Speak Ryan, as well as their Feckless Flocks and Fake News Fabricators, are imbedded a little deeper in the quagmire than originally believed.
Speaking of quagmires, Santa, once drained, what would you think of establishing a “Gallery of Disgrace” in Union Square, just in front of the Capital? In order to keep costs down, it could be an outdoor Gallery, and pigeons can enjoy it too. We could erect small masks, which you and Colin could produce five a year in your workshop, in the shape of pigs or donkeys mounted on a steel rod. Each rod would have the name of a Congressman who was accused and/or convicted of various misdeeds while doing “public service.” This year, we could kick it off with lecherous Congressmen John Conyers, Joe Barton, Al Franken, Tim Murphy, and Dennis Hastert, a virtual who’s-who of recent dirt bags, and Clinton cronies. Next year, we can either march back in time to other recently disgraced Congressmen, Vince McAllister, David Wu, Scott DesJarlais, Anthony Weiner, and Mark Souder, or we could just wait to see what five guys are “outed” yet this year.
As you rummage around in that bag see if there is any morality and decency left to sprinkle on that cesspool known as Hollywood. It would seem they have more than their fair share of perverts, miscreants, and know-it-alls. They are paid ridiculously large sums to entertain us, much like circus acts, then slap each other on the back, trade trophies (and spouses), pray on helpless victims…and then advise us otherwise.
Ah, you know what, Santa…never mind on that last one. As busy as you are, perhaps those Hollywood types deserve each other. Save your magic dust.
Mr. Frey is giving me the look, Santa, so I need to shorten up some of these requests. Other wishes hopefully found in your bag this year:
Robust book sales for Mr. Marek... Mike Madigan’s retirement… A couple of relievers for the Cubs and another World Series ring… Clues for Maxine Waters, Joy Behar, and Keith Olbermann… Strong economic growth for Kankakee and Iroquois counties… Californian succession… Lord Stanley’s Cup returned to Chicago… The division of Illinois into two states – separated by Interstates 80 and 39... A quick return for Aaron Rogers… Continued vitality for President Trump and indolence for Kim Jong-un… A short-range golf game for me… Al Sharpton’s back taxes.
Finally, and don’t laugh, how about some long over-due term limits for Washington and Springfield…or world peace, whichever is easier? Sorry, dude. It’s Christmas and I guess the spirit has just run away with me. Or the ‘nog.
Anyway, Merry Christmas everybody!
First, let me be clear, I’m going to be pleased when Al Franken is gone from the Senate. He didn’t belong there. A mediocre comedian at best, he won his bid for the Senate under suspicious circumstances, having lost the initial count. One wonders, if Minnesotans didn’t have a predilection for asking someone to hold their beer and watch while they vote for the oddball candidate, would the original count have been as close as it was. By all accounts, he is not a nice person, and is more or less a lap-dog for the Far-Left, thus continuing his comedic career.
Eight women have come forward to accuse Franken of some sort of misconduct. Four of the eight have remained anonymous, thus denying the man a right to face his accuser. In this country, pre-Obama, the accused used to be granted the right to face his/her accusers. In my mind, their claims are speculative at best, if not just illegitimate.
The four named accusers all had the misfortune of being groped or kissed by Al Franken, the clown, before he became Senator Franken – eight-and-a-half years ago. There is even photographic proof of a dumb stunt he pulled on Leeann Tweeden while she was asleep on a plane. Why didn’t she or the others tell anyone at the time of the alleged atrocity? Wouldn’t that have been nice information to know prior to the election? Do you suppose his status as a comedian “of note” for Saturday Night Live might have been a determining factor for the silence? And when did just an accusation become substantiation?
Some speculate that Franken is now the sacrificial lamb by the Democratic party so that they can make a fuss if Roy Moore from Alabama gets elected. At the time this started, the public didn’t know about John Conyers escapades, otherwise Franken might have skated. Moore is the Republican judge from Alabama who has been alleged to be a sexual predator of eight women as far back as forty years ago, an accusation he denies. Gloria Allred is representing one accuser, which adds suspicion to the validity of any claim. Anyway, the last claim against Moore allegedly happened in 1991, twenty-six years ago. I don’t know about you folks, but I have a hard time remembering what I had for breakfast yesterday. If someone accused me of doing something forty years ago, given it was the 70’s, I might have to consent to them and apologize, having no clear recollection of most of the decade.
Doesn’t any of this sound suspiciously of just another day of Washington politics? Cogs in a giant gear being ground up and shoved down our gullets by an implicit media? But Franken’s career is now over and his name has been tainted. (Good Lord, I can’t believe I’m defending this man!) His name is now tossed in the same hat as people like Dennis Hastert or Anthony Weiner, both doing time in prison for their crimes.
Does anybody really believe Al Franken’s escapades should be enough to throw him in jail or ruin his life, eight-a-half years after he allegedly did something sophomoric? Is there not a line being blurred between unappreciated advances as compared to actual crimes? Can anyone now clearly point out the dividing line in today’s societal mores? And given the further back in time one reaches, the harder it is to verify, shouldn’t there be a statute of limitation?
There is a valid viewpoint concerning the power structure of any given situation. But, when referring to adults, this can be over-hyped and in the case of Al Franken, certainly should not be confused with just being “star-struck.” This viewpoint might be better served for protecting children.
Many great minds throughout history stated in one form or another, the quotation “silence is consent.” This would include Plato, Leonardo da Vinci, Albert Einstein and even Martin Luther King. It does seem, at least to me, to be a common-sense notion, although admittedly, I couldn’t find any examples of women making that statement. It has only been in these “enlightened times” that the definition has morphed into having subsets of definitions as to when the quote might apply and when it might not. If one believes they have been wronged, is it asking too much for them to do something about it, and on a timely basis? Nine years or more after the fact has all the markings of nothing more than politics - a poor excuse for anything.
Otherwise, how is this any different than the Salem witch trials or McCarthy-ism?
To date I haven’t said much about the pro football matter. The reason is that I am hopelessly addicted to the Green Bay Packers; have been since 1968. I’m sorry, there just isn’t anything I can do about it – I’m weak.
Unfortunately, the Packers play in the National Football League. NFL for short. Also, short for “No Fans Left.” The League is doing everything humanly possible to drive guys like me away and I wonder if they haven’t gone so far, they won’t find their way back. This year I watch the Packer game only. No pre-game hype with Bradshaw and the boys, no post-game replay, and no other games.
For years, the NFL has skirted around, somewhat successfully, with the fact that many of its players are no more than thugs, thieves, rapists, drug abusers, and in a few instances, murderers. Incredibly, this was not enough to influence the general public away from them. Oh, there were ramblings about it, a few were kicked out of the league and/or went to prison, but in general the public hung in there with the NFL.
But the real downfall seems to have begun with the concussion matter, which has only superficially been addressed. Research has been performed and some money was thrown at the veteran players, albeit, of course, not enough. (Is it ever enough? Do you think those veterans would have stopped playing even if they had known?) Yes, the NFL has a concussion protocol, but there are examples of it being circumvented. As a former pee-wee coach myself, knowing what I know now, my son wouldn’t have played then.
Greed through over-saturation has been another shot in the foot of the League. Not content with games on Sunday afternoon and one Monday night, they had to put more games on TV. Now, despite the protestations of safety by players and coaches, we have Thursday night, all day Sunday, and both Sunday and Monday nights. I just want to watch the Packers, regardless of what day or time. About greed, I bought the NFL ticket the first year it was available so we could watch Packer games. We paid $79 for it the first year. We paid $279 this year.
I stopped going to games years ago. It’s not a quality atmosphere to take kids. I’m certainly no teetotaler but have never understood the fascination of going to a public event to see how much beer one can consume, thus becoming obnoxious and crude to all others within earshot. I also have no desire during the course of a game to see how many times I can disrupt the people sitting around me so that I can make my way to go stand in line for the bathroom either.
In the name of “safety,” penalty calls started raining down every other play, thus slowing down the game and getting the referees mugs on television every few minutes. We now know certain referees by name on sight. It has gotten so bad there is no reason to have kicking or punting plays anymore because of the obligatory penalty call.
The greatest running back I ever saw play was Walter Payton. No matter how hard he got knocked down, he got up first and helped his tackler up. When Walter scored a touchdown, he got up off the ground and ran over to the referee to hand him the ball. He just exuded class. Now, when some overpaid schmuck manages to score a touchdown, he has to go into a charade of choreographed childish antics and dances, as if it were the first and only time he will ever get there. It’s obscene and immature. And to head off all the Liberal retorts that it is that players right, well it's my right to not go or not watch too because I don’t like it…which is the basis for this commentary. You see, us Conservatives have rights too.
With all of this working against them, the “kneeling thing” commenced by Colin Kaepernick, a middling quarterback with the 49’ers, who has made more than $30 million in his NFL career. His “beef” was his perception of how people of color are treated by the police. So, he decided the best way to protest the police matter was to kneel, on our time and dime, during the National Anthem for our country. This was a spit in the eye to every veteran, past and present, as well as the flag and everything it stands for. It had nothing to do with the police. This total lack of patriotism upset a whole bunch of folks, me included.
To the NFL players amazement, Colin kneeled himself right out of a job. And in this age of mob mentality and “Me too” politics, most of the players “concluded” they would back Kaepernick, regardless of the fact that many had no idea what they were protesting. And liberals, always searching for a place to stick their thumb in the eye of “the Man” joined in. Some Dolphins players took a knee in London, embarrassing our nation. Marshawn Lynch stood for the Mexican national anthem in Mexico City but sat for the American anthem, thus embarrassing himself. He only makes $4.5 million per year in this rotten country. Michael Bennett, who lied about the Las Vegas police, making $15.7 million per year, likened his condition in the NFL to that of a slave because a team owner demanded his players not kneel on his clock. Hey Michael, get a clue!
The spineless NFL brass, led by Roger Goodell, mistakenly believed the great unwashed, that would be us, would overlook this too and come crawling back to shower them all with more of our money. Goodell, by the way, wants $40 million per year and a four-year contract to continue. (He dropped his demand of a private jet for life.) So, he sat on his duff and did nothing, fearing player backlash. Now he is talking about taking money earmarked for other causes, such as breast cancer, to give to whatever hair-brained charities the players want. Want to bet ticket prices will go up to support all this buffoonery? Now would be a good time to tell you the NFL pays no Federal tax on its $10 billion per year earnings.
The result of all this is that attendance is down by about one million fans and the NFL has lost over $500 million in ad revenue. One has to wonder if, while this collection of rocket scientists is kneeling and looking at all those empty seats if they realize they are killing their own game? Talk about cutting your nose off the spite your face!
But I sense something else – a mentality of athletes that have come to some sort of realization they are now better than us. Because of the money they are paid and the amount of people that shower them with praise, they seem to have lost touch with reality. It has gotten so bad that I watched an incredible replay from Sunday in which a referee threw a penalty flag against the Kansas City Chiefs. Marcus Peters, a player for the Chiefs who has been kneeling or hiding out in the runway all year during the anthem, picked up the flag and threw it in the stands. In 49 years of watching football, I had never saw this act of contempt for the game. Then, Mr. Peters promptly walked off the field smiling and into the locker room…while the game was still going on. Evidently, at some point someone on the Chiefs must have told him that the game was not over and he needed to get back on the field. He came out in his cleats and a smile, without any socks or tape on his legs, essentially out of uniform. He gets $2.4 million to walk out on his team. The point I got – nobody was going to tell him what to do.
As one NFL owner said, the inmates are running the prison. Don’t know about you but I’m not paying to visit prison inmates. Well, maybe if they wear green and gold.