Map of life expectancy at birth from Global Education Project.

Saturday, April 20, 2019

Norts Spews

Last year I posted about Duh Sawx while they were steamrolling their way to the MLB championship. I reflected on the whole concept of fan loyalty and the seemingly irrational but culturally universal way that people live vicariously through their sports heroes. This year, mysteriously, despite bringing back pretty much the same team that flattened the competition last year, they are an abomination. I mean totally unwatchable. Can't hit, can't pitch, they stand around in the outfield watching balls bounce over the fence, they're listless and boneheaded.

There is a lot of psychology in sports. You'll notice that the most expert commentators, people who have played the game, but a lot of stock in teams' emotional state, their interpersonal chemistry (which can be all business, they don't have to like each other off the field), who is fired up for revenge on whom. It's tough to repeat, that's all there is to it. Winning a championship is often bad news for next year.

Turning now to Tiger Woods, yes what he has done is incredible. He destroyed his family because he let fame and fortune go to his head in all the wrong ways, and he overstressed his body till it gave out on him. Three years ago he was addicted to painkillers and he couldn't walk. Throughout it all -- ten years of struggle during which he could not compete -- he kept insisting that he was going to come back. And quite a lot of people, including me, though we had our doubts, thought he would probably do it. Yep.

He changed the game. Before Tiger, golfers were overweight, out of shape, smoking cigarettes between shots. He approached the game as an athlete, bulking up his shoulders and arms and hitting the ball farther than anyone before. It didn't even matter that he missed the fairway half the time because he was so close to the greens. So the young guys started going to the gym, the PGA moved the tees back, and now Tiger's length off the tee is about average. So he has to win a different way. I have to give him all the credit for fighting through terrible pain, conquering his demons, working with iron discipline and not giving up on himself. He hasn't just come back as an athlete, he genuinely seems to be a more mature, nicer person.

But we musn't forget that he is also extremely wealthy. Almost no-one in his situation can afford the very best orthopedists and surgeons and pain specialists and physical therapists and psychological counselors -- a lot of stuff insurance won't pay for. I'm pretty sure insurance would not have paid for those three surgeries. He had the resources heA needed to accomplish his miracle. Most people don't.

Also too: Let me once again remind you that "anonymous" is not an acceptable handle for commenting here. An observation about sexual misconduct by Bill Clinton was perfectly appropriate on my post about reality and the law, and I would have published it otherwise.

Clinton was impeached for lying about a blow job. Most people think that was not warranted, but his behavior was certainly scurrilous. Monica Lewinsky initiated the affair, but no, the CEO cannot have an affair with an intern. He was absolutely obliged to turn her down, and regardless of who made the first move, he was exploiting and harming a vulnerable young person. The most serious public allegation against him was by Juanita Broaddrick, who alleges that he raped her when he was Attorney General of Arkansas. There is corroboration from friends who say she told them about it at the time. She says he apologized years later, saying he was not the man he used to be. She did not go to the police and there was no investigation at the time.

So what should we make of this? I would say it is unfortunate that he was nominated and became president. I think we should have done better. Fortunately, his time as an important public figure is pretty much over. He has said and done so many idiotic things in recent years that nobody wants to be on the stage with him. And the cultural reassessment we have undergone about the sort of behavior that once got him characterized as a "charming rogue" means he's pretty much toxic anyway. He certainly didn't do his wife any good during her presidential campaign. The past can't be undone but we can do better from now on.


Don Quixote said...

Excellent blog today. Great comments, good summation of Tiger Woods's heroic perseverance and acknowledgment of his advantages, respectful comments for "Anonymous"'s benefit (though I don't know if they'll help him ... but I enjoyed them).

I believe Shitler and his so-called presidency are starting to come apart. I sure hope so.

John Bachtell said...

I don't think those who dream of the removal of the president from office have thought this through.

Do that...and you've go Pence.

Don Quixote said...

No, you're absolutely correct ... I want Pence to go too. He's so hollow it's scary. Get rid of 'em both, absolutely. Everything about Shitler is bogus. All his choices, cohorts, cronies. They've all got to go. Restore sanity to government.

John Bachtell said...

I think the Democratic party is in real trouble for 2020 for these reasons

1) Purity - The primary will severely damage whoever emerges because of the "purity fights" as each candidate attempts to hold the others accountable through the PC lens of today for acts that were socially acceptable when done.

2) So far, the only positive platform has been "medicare for all" which may not be as popular as they think. Mostly, they've spent their time as the anti Trump party. Presidential job approval shows that ain't working.

3) Democrats have painted themselves as the party of non-whites, particularly white men. This has alienated a large block of white voters as they are continually bashed as bad people for things they feel they've had little control over.

4) Historically the probability of a sitting president being re-elected for a second term is likely.

If I were to give advice to the DNC it would be to come with a positive message to address the concerns of the regular guy and try to be the party of everyone and not just the identity groups they have cobbled together. .

Don Quixote said...

I think Buttigieg does exactly that. I heard him talk and his intelligence is practically out-of-this-world, but he speaks like a down-to-earth person, and he understands his consitutents--i.e., he understands the point of view of people who voted for Shitler. He brings it all together and is too smart to fall for stupid shit. He's very positive.

In addition, Shitler is on the way out because even people who've drunk the Kook Aid are starting to see he's a complete and utter fraud. And crazy. And demented.