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Disaster in Dallas

I grew in the ’60s and ’70s. The Dallas Cowboys won. They were a team that other teams tried to be. Now, not so much. The Dallas Cowboys are awful. I can’t explain a five-interception performance by Tony Romo. Miscommunication. Sloppy ball handling. Dropped passes. The Cowboys were simply awful. The only hope is for some type of New York Giants turnaround of the season. Jason Garrett is not Tom Coughlin. Tony Romo is not Eli Manning.

The score 34-18 does not tell the story. The Chicago Bears destroyed the Dallas Cowboys on Monday Night Football. This wasn’t as bad as the 44-0 beat down that the Bears laid on the Cowboys back in 1985, but it was close. Jay Cutler looked like a seasoned veteran who was cool in the pocket. Tony Romo looked like a rookie. I have made hundreds of excuses for Tony because there are times when he looks great. Unfortunately, he doesn’t seem to have the ability to fix badness in the middle of a game. He doesn’t seem to be able to turn it up a notch. It is what it is with Tony. If he comes out hot, then the Cowboys have a chance to win. If he doesn’t… well, then the Cowboys are going to lose.

I could almost excuse the interceptions, but we were playing the Bears. They weren’t mixing up their coverages. Romo forced some balls into their patented cover to defense. Dez Bryant dropped a touchdown. Romo overthrew to a wide-open Miles Austin. Brandon Marshall was running through our “upgraded” secondary like it was last year’s secondary. Ugly. Ugly. Ugly.

The problem with the Cowboys is their offense. They can’t run the ball. They can’t run block. They can’t pass block. They can’t catch (Dez Bryant and Jason Witten have dropped more balls in the first four games of this year than they did all of last year). Only Jacksonville and the Colts have scored fewer points over the course of four games. At this rate, it might be time to call Terrell Owens and see if he is interested in playing some wide receiver. It is time for Jerry Jones to do something. This is embarrassing. (I’m thinking of burning my Cowboys t-shirts, baseball caps and other stuff in protest.)

I hate to say that the season is over after four games, but without some significant changes, the season is over. Where are Jimmy Johnson, Troy Aikman, Emmitt Smith and Michael Irvin? It brings a tear to my eye to remember that kind of excellence.

By | 2013-11-03T18:15:35+00:00 October 2nd, 2012|NFL|Comments Off on Disaster in Dallas

My thoughts for a Monday Evening

Occupy Houston, pic taken by my blogging pal, Neil

I have been watching Monday Night Football, but it’s almost as exciting as watching paint dry. I’m turning off the TV. Neither team is really playing professional football.

It is extremely disappointing to see that the Department of Health and Human Services was unable to figure out a formula to get the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports system up and running. Americans need something to help us in old age. Currently long-term care is extremely expensive. There are absolutely no affordable insurance policies. Currently, if you’re poor or if you’re middle class, long-term care is simply out of your reach.

One of the things that I find just a little bit strange is that the mainstream media has simply stopped covering bank failures. This used to be big news just a couple months ago (well, more like a couple years ago). On Friday, the FDIC took over bank failures 77, 78, 79 and 80 for this year.

From EPI:

The Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction is charged with negotiating a plan to reduce federal deficits by at least $1.5 trillion over the next 10 years. It is essential for the long-term health of the nation and the economy that its proposals include equitable amounts of increased revenue. The Budget Control Act (BCA) of August 2011, which mandated the creation of the committee, has already reduced budget deficits by $895 billion over the next decade by focusing strictly on the spending side of the ledger. Statutory spending caps will reduce discretionary outlays by $756 billion, program integrity and education provisions will cut $5 billion in net spending, and debt service will fall by $134 billion (CBO 2011a). Moreover, these cuts build on the spending cuts in the 2011 full-year appropriations bill, which lowered the trajectory for discretionary outlays by $122 billion over the next decade (CBO 2011b). Relative to the Office of Management and Budget’s (OMB) higher baseline for discretionary spending, the BCA cuts to discretionary outlays total $992 billion, or $1.2 trillion when debt-service savings are included (OMB 2011a).

A spending-cuts-only approach to deficit reduction is unacceptable for numerous reasons:

  • Deep cuts to spending programs will defund key public investments and undermine economic security programs.
  • Without more revenue, spending cuts will disproportionately fall on lower-income and working families.
  • Spending cuts are more damaging to the economic recovery than tax increases, particularly tax increases on upper-income households.
  • Tax policies of the last decade are responsible for much of the structural budget deficit and roughly half of debt accumulation over the last decade (Fieldhouse and Pollack 2011).

Krugman is right. As the Occupy Wall Street movement grows we can expect that there is going to be more accountability on Wall Street. I know if I sell fraudulent products to the American people and hundreds of thousands of Americans lose millions billions of dollars, I can expect to go to jail. Here’s what Krugman has to say:

On Saturday The Times reported what people in the financial industry are saying privately about the protests. My favorite quote came from an unnamed money manager who declared, “Financial services are one of the last things we do in this country and do it well. Let’s embrace it.”

This is deeply unfair to American workers, who are good at lots of things, and could be even better if we made adequate investments in education and infrastructure. But to the extent that America has lagged in everything except financial services, shouldn’t the question be why, and whether it’s a trend we want to continue?

For the financialization of America wasn’t dictated by the invisible hand of the market. What caused the financial industry to grow much faster than the rest of the economy starting around 1980 was a series of deliberate policy choices, in particular a process of deregulation that continued right up to the eve of the 2008 crisis.

By | 2011-10-17T22:50:50+00:00 October 17th, 2011|Economy|Comments Off on My thoughts for a Monday Evening

How crazy is Hank Williams, Jr?

Now, like many Americans, I have watched Hank Williams, Jr. start off Monday Night Football for years. It is a fun four- or five-minute segment. I’m not sure what he or his publicist were thinking when he decided to go on FOX and Friends.

From TP:

ESPN dropped Hank Williams Jr.’s well-known “Are You Ready for Some Football?” opening song for Monday Night Football last night after the country singer compared President Obama to “Hitler” earlier in the day and called the president and vice president “the enemy.” Shortly after Williams made the comments on Fox & Friends yesterday morning, ESPN said in a statement, “We are extremely disappointed with his comments, and as a result have decided to pull the open from tonight’s telecast.”

Williams, a staunch conservative who is reportedly considering a GOP Senate run in Tennessee, said his comments were “misunderstood,” yet he seemed to stand by them:

“Some of us have strong opinions and are often misunderstood. My analogy was extreme – but it was to make a point.” […]

Williams Jr. adds, “Every time the media brings up the tea party it’s painted as racist and extremists – but there’s never a backlash – no outrage to those comparisons.”

This has to be a deliberate ploy. He must be gearing up for a run for Senate. From an entertainment standpoint, this was a disaster. On the other hand, if you want to whip up the Tea Party so that you have support behind a Senate bid, this has to count as brilliant.

By | 2011-10-04T11:28:26+00:00 October 4th, 2011|Party Politics|Comments Off on How crazy is Hank Williams, Jr?