Sunday, February 3, 2008

Gasoline, Video Cameras and a Senator....

I know that I am biased about the whole spygate thing. After all, I am a Patriots fan. I have attempted to look at it as unbiased as I can and here is what I have decided: This is the most overblown story going right now for a couple of reasons;

1-It happened once this season, and it happened during the first half of the first game. According to everyone involved it had no effect on the game because the camera was confiscated with the tape before the Patriots would have had a chance to break it down.

2-The general opinion of anyone who actually played in the NFL is that it happens all the time and team should know enough to plan for it and combat it. It seems as though the only people who have an issue is the media...

3-The Jets got caught at Gillette taping the Patriots, and that got no play. I would assume this is because the Jets have sucked for the last few decades so if they are cheating, they should do a better job of it because they still lose.

4-The Colts got caught piping in extra crowd noise over the PA system during the opposing teams offensive possessions. This, to me, would seem to be just as bad if not worse than taping signals because it has a direct effect on the outcome of that game, not future games.

5-Taping the opponent is not illegal during a game. The Patriots got in trouble for where they were taping from.

6-It clearly was an ongoing issue in the NFL because the commissioner went to the effort of sending out a memo TO EVERY TEAM telling them to stop doing it.

Now, this is obviously still a topic because the Patriots are undefeated. It gives every news outlet something to talk about and discuss. I get that. If they tanked the season, noone would care at this point. I agree that it was stupid and speaks to the arrogance of our coach to think that he could get away with it even after the NFL specifically told every team to stop doing it. He deserved the fine he got, and the team deserves the penalties they got because he represents the team.

What I found most surprising was the reaction my father had to it. My old man is probably the biggest fan I know. He and his friend Clint have been watching games together for my entire life. I can remember when I was young, Clint coming over for a game a few hours early and the two of them playing the upcoming game out on Intellivision, an old videogame system. They were fans before it was cool to be a fan. I also remember them having to go to The Lobster Trap in Essex to watch home games because they were blacked out due to very poor attendance. The Trap was the closest bar willing to pony up the funds for a satallite feed. After the first superbowl win in 01, I thought my father was going to die in his easy chair. He looked like he had been out on the field for 60 minutes himself. His jersey was stained, he was sweating, and he sprained his ankle. To sum it up, he is a true fan and deserves, more than anyone, to enjoy the current run.
Anyway, after the whole spygate thing broke, I was interested to hear his thoughts on it. I assumed he would say that everyone did it and it was overblown. But thats not what he said. He said "If I was Bob Kraft I would fire Belichick. Because of him, everything this team has done for the last decade has a black eye." I was floored by this response, and it still surprises me. The reason I mention it is because I want our readers to know that even hardcore fans were shaken by Spygate.

But here is the bottom line: At the end of the day, football is just a sport. It has no bearing on the world or how it runs. It is entertainment. It is an escape from the many real problems we face everyday. They govern themselves, and police themselves and that is fine. If you dont like how they do it, dont watch. Plain and simple.

Yesterday I paid $2.99 per gallon for the cheapest gas they had. I am sure by Memorial day, that number will swell to around $3.40 a gallon. Home heating oil costs me over $300.00 dollars a month during the winter. The lower and middle classes are in the middle of an energy crisis. I have relatives who keep their heat at 60 degrees and wear sweaters and two pairs of socks in the house to keep warm, because they cannot afford the cost to heat the house. We are told by our leaders that oil costs are soaring. Yet, Exxon Mobil announced their final financial numbers for 2007 the other day. The posted record profits. RECORD FUCKING PROFITS!! To the tune of $40.6 BILLION dollars. So while the common man is sitting in their home freezing, worrying how to make ends meet, the oil companies are making more money than they have ever made.

What does this have to do with spygate you ask? Arlen Specter, a republican senator from PA has spent the better part of the week giving interviews about his grave concerns over spygate. He has asked the Commissioner of the NFL to come and speak before congress to explain why he destroyed the tapes confiscated from the Patriots. Are you kidding? Who cares about videotaping the NFL?

Here is an idea, how about you drag the board of director of Exxon Mobil from their mansions and demand that they explain themselves before congress?

How about you tell them that if they dont stop gauging the average American for every last dime you will nationalize the Oil companies.

How about you stand up for the people you are supposed to be protecting? People are losing their homes. People are forced to choose between heating their houses and food, and you want to know about the videotapes?

Senator Specter, you should be ashamed of yourself. You come from a state where people suffer through long winters. I am sure you have never had to worry about where your next pay check was going, seeing as senators make over $200,000.00 a year, and lets face it, most are rich before they even get into office. I am okay with that. I just want you to do what you were elected to do, and that is standing up for the people who cannot stand up for themselves.

Are you seriously going to tell me that the videotaping scandal is more important than the rising cost of oil or the subprime mortgage crisis? Are you going to tell me that this is literally the most important thing you can think of to tackle right now?

These companies are taking everything they can get from middle and lower class Americans. These people depend on their elected officials to work tirelessly to prevent that very thing from happening. But all of that is going to have to wait, because the Patriots taped their opponents.

Here is a link on how to contact Senator Specter: http://specter.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Contact.ContactForm

Please contact this man and demand he stop wasting his time on entertainment and focus on something that actually matters to the people serves.

-Benny

1 comment:

Foote said...

Senator Specter announced that Monday he will start his new crusade. Due to the recent admission by Sylvester Stallone and his steroid use in the mid 80's, Specter is trying to have the results of the fight in Rocky III overturned so Clubber Lang will retain the title.