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Tuesday, July 01, 2014

OTP - July 2014: Republicans Lose To Democrats For Sixth Straight Year In Congressional Baseball Game

As Time magazine recently reported, Republicans, frustrated by their 22-0 loss in last year’s game, sought a new coach to shake things up on the field this year. Some members even appealed to House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) to fire the coach, Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas). But Boehner said he wasn’t powerful enough to control the baseball diamond, and Barton refused to walk away after spending 28 years with the game. Instead, he brought on Rep. Roger Williams (R-Texas), a former professional baseball player and coach at Texas Christian University, to coach while he stayed on as the team’s manager.

In the face of Wednesday’s loss, according to The Washington Post, Republicans are once again asking Boehner to remove Barton from the game. But with multiple pitchers giving up walk after walk, it seems that what the Republicans really need is a pitcher who can better match Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-La.), who previously pitched on Morehouse College’s varsity baseball team.

Bitter Mouse Posted: July 01, 2014 at 07:53 AM | 4025 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: politics, winning is fun

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   2901. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 11:21 AM (#4756860)
This situation simply doesn't fit into the 1964/1947 civil rights template. Virtually everything about it is different.


Well, sure. Society didn't hit the skids till '79, IIRC.
   2902. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 24, 2014 at 11:26 AM (#4756861)
Robinson, who was born in Georgia, is one of the best Negro athletes in the U.S. At the University of California at Los Angeles in 1939-40 he was an all-American halfback, the Coast's high scorer in basketball and UCLA's best broad-jumper. After leaving the Army last year as a lieutenant, he played for Kansas City, a top-ranking Negro club, [and] batted .340.

If Robinson makes good, the major-league teams may sign up other Negro players, many of whom are of big-league caliber. Although some ballplayers and club owners have expressed disapproval, most of baseball seemed willing to give Robinson a fair change.

Robinson's hands are exceptionally large and very strong. [...] He bats well, is an excellent fielder, can run 100 yards in ten seconds flat.


That's nice. Now try quoting the baseball press. Here's how the then-venerated "Bible of Baseball" (The Sporting News) weighed in on Robinson's signing, in a sentiment that was widely shared within the baseball establishment:

Robinson is reported to possess baseball abilities which, were he white, would make him eligible for a trial with, let us say, the Brooklyn Dodgers' Class B farm at Newport News if he were six years younger.


The attitude of OB in the years leading up to Robinson's signing was mixed. On the one hand, you had scores of quotes from ballplayers who supported integration, mostly from players who had competed against the likes of Satchel Paige and Josh Gibson in exhibition games. OTOH you also had near universal dismissal of the quality of the Negro Leagues, and plenty of Dungy-like comments along the lines of "I'm not prejudiced, it's those other guys".

And repeat: Nobody thought of Jackie Robinson as a potential superstar. In the eyes of contemporary observers, he had far fewer baseball credentials to his name at the time of his signing than Sam has football credentials.** Rickey was taking a calculated risk for a combination of business and moral reasons, but the rest of the baseball world was content to snipe and let him be the one to stick his neck out.

**To elaborate on this point: In terms of what we actually know about his talent, Sam today is much like Robinson after his sterling Montreal season in 1946: A blue chip prospect who'd starred on a lower level of competition, but with no guarantee whatever that he'd be able to make the jump to the Bigs. The sports world is littered with AAA stars who've failed in the Majors. But I doubt if Dungy would have reacted so blandly if at that point Rickey had said that promoting him to Brooklyn wouldn't be worth the "distraction."

   2903. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 11:26 AM (#4756862)
Unlike your feelings, of course. Still the US was founded (imperfectly everyone will admit) with some ideas that while they may be a matter of faith are still fundamental to our nation and as such deserve strong consideration. And those ideas seem to me to argue strongly against discrimination, racism and bigotry.

Well, Christian religious precepts were also fundamental to our nation's founding. But, you see not difficulty in jettisoning those.
   2904. bobm Posted: July 24, 2014 at 11:31 AM (#4756867)
That's nice. Now try quoting the baseball press.

Because Life Magazine was an obscure, little samizdat rag?

Why don't you first find anyone, anywhere, who is saying anything remotely as positive about Sam's abilities, sporting accomplishments and/or potential today?
   2905. The Good Face Posted: July 24, 2014 at 11:40 AM (#4756872)
Well, Christian religious precepts were also fundamental to our nation's founding. But, you see not difficulty in jettisoning those.


Ditto slavery. Apparently our nation's founding is something of a Chinese menu for BM.
   2906. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 11:41 AM (#4756874)
So Michael Sam is Jackie Robinson. Okay.

And people wonder why African Americans by and large don't see the same-sex issue as a civil rights issue on par with what African Americans went through in this country. The forced attempt at a parallel denigrates what African Americans went through. Slavery. Segretation. Lynchings, beatings, murders, assassinations, wrongfully accused black men being strung up in criminal trials, etc.

What gay people have gone through is not on par with that.
   2907. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 11:41 AM (#4756875)
Well, Christian religious precepts were also fundamental to our nation's founding. But, you see not difficulty in jettisoning those.


Nonsense. While I am an atheist I was brought up in the Judeo-Christian tradition and much of those precepts form the basis of my feelings and opinions and form the opinions and ideals of most of the nation.

I don't follow every single precept of your version of Christianity (or any version I admit) and don't think our nation should either, because the nation was also founded on the idea of separation of church and state (for the benefit of both I might add). I would add that the founders didn't follow every precept of your version of Christianity either, some more and some less then either of us I suspect.

However perhaps you have some specific precepts that you are concerned I am jettisoning that are fundamental though. Specifics matter.
   2908. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 24, 2014 at 11:41 AM (#4756876)
Sam isn't a blue chip prospect, Andy. You're imagining and inventing, not objectively analyzing.
   2909. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 11:44 AM (#4756877)
Sam isn't a blue chip prospect, Andy.


As has been told to him repeatedly.
   2910. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 11:45 AM (#4756878)
Ditto slavery. Apparently our nation's founding is something of a Chinese menu for BM.


Are you arguing for slavery to be brought back? If so I applaud your taking a brave and unusual stand, though think you are a horrible person for wanting it. If not I fail to see your point.

I mentioned right in my post that the nation was founded with imperfections (of which slavery is one, though certainly a notable example) and that liberals work to continue to perfect to fix those imperfections to strive towards the ideals under which it was founded. I have never and will never maintain that the US was perfect the moment it was founded and should never change.

So basically your post was silly and totally and typically non-responsive to my argument. So good for you, I guess.
   2911. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 24, 2014 at 11:48 AM (#4756881)
That's nice. Now try quoting the baseball press.

Because Life Magazine was an obscure, little samizdat rag?


No, because Henry Luce wasn't running Major League Baseball. That Sporting News editorial was much more reflective of the baseball establishment's views of Robinson's potential than an unsigned three paragraph story in a general interest magazine, which didn't quote a single baseball person in support of Robinson's actual perceived talent level.

Why don't you first find anyone, anywhere, who is saying anything remotely as positive about Sam's abilities, sporting accomplishments and/or potential today?

Well, first you'll have to find me someone who was even predicting in October of 1945 that Jackie Robinson was a bona fide Major League prospect, let alone a "superstar". And then you might consider Sam's non-affirmative action award as the SEC defensive player of the year.

Of course that award doesn't make Sam a guaranteed pro**, but then a year in the Negro Leagues and a college football and track career is hardly enough to make a 26-year old Jackie Robinson into a Major League prospect by ordinary standards.

**And maybe not a blue chip prospect, but then neither was Jackie Robinson at the time of his signing.
   2912. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 11:52 AM (#4756885)
I mentioned right in my post that the nation was founded with imperfections (of which slavery is one, though certainly a notable example) and that liberals work to continue to perfect to fix those imperfections to strive towards the ideals under which it was founded. I have never and will never maintain that the US was perfect the moment it was founded and should never change.

So basically your post was silly and totally and typically non-responsive to my argument. So good for you, I guess.


How about my post?

Many if not most of the founders believed that Christianity was a critical underpinning to the success of the Republic, and that the Republic would fail without the backing of those values.

Yet, you see no issue hacking away at that foundation.
   2913. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 24, 2014 at 11:53 AM (#4756887)
I thought Jackie Robinson *was* a blue chip prospect. You said that 15 minutes ago.
   2914. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:00 PM (#4756893)
How about my post?

Many if not most of the founders believed that Christianity was a critical underpinning to the success of the Republic, and that the Republic would fail without the backing of those values.


Well I did respond in 2907. I am not sure what else to say without specifics from you and why you think I am "hacking away at that foundation".
   2915. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:02 PM (#4756894)
I thought Jackie Robinson *was* a blue chip prospect. You said that 15 minutes ago.

He was indeed that----after his year in Montreal. But he certainly wasn't considered one at the time of his signing. I realize that understanding distinctions before 1979 are a bit beyond your pay scale.
   2916. The Good Face Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:03 PM (#4756895)
Are you arguing for slavery to be brought back? If so I applaud your taking a brave and unusual stand, though think you are a horrible person for wanting it. If not I fail to see your point.

I mentioned right in my post that the nation was founded with imperfections (of which slavery is one, though certainly a notable example) and that liberals work to continue to perfect to fix those imperfections to strive towards the ideals under which it was founded. I have never and will never maintain that the US was perfect the moment it was founded and should never change.


I am not. Slavery was a terrible idea and we're still paying for the mistakes made by those founders today.

Which is why I see no reason we should nod our heads like dunces when some clown cites the founders as though there's some special received wisdom there that all must abide by. They were terribly wrong about slavery and they're wrong about plenty of other things as well.
   2917. bobm Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:08 PM (#4756899)
And then you might consider Sam's non-affirmative action award as the SEC defensive player of the year.

Here are the previous winners of that prestigious award.

http://www.sports-reference.com/cfb/awards/sec-dpoy.html

                                                                     
Year              Player          School                      Summary
2013        Michael Sam*        Missouri       31 Solo 17 Ast 11.5 Sk
2012       Jarvis Jones*         Georgia 52 Solo 33 Ast 14.5 Sk 1 Int
2011   Morris Claiborne* Louisiana State  32 Solo 19 Ast 0.0 Sk 6 Int
2010   Patrick Peterson* Louisiana State  29 Solo 13 Ast 0.0 Sk 4 Int
2009    Rolando McClain*         Alabama  53 Solo 52 Ast 4.0 Sk 2 Int
2008          Eric Berry       Tennessee    7 Att 37 Yds 5.3 Avg 0 TD
2007       Glenn Dorsey* Louisiana State  34 Solo 35 Ast 7.0 Sk 0 Int
2006      Patrick Willis     Mississippi  87 Solo 50 Ast 3.0 Sk 0 Int
2005       Demeco Ryans*         Alabama  41 Solo 35 Ast 5.0 Sk 1 Int
2004      David Pollack*         Georgia                             
2003      Chad Lavalais* Louisiana State            1 Int -5 Yds 0 TD

   2918. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:09 PM (#4756900)
So at the time the Dodgers had to deal with day to day distractions at the major league level -- the actual analogue to the Rams -- Robinson Wes a blue chip prospect worth the distractions. Sam isn't a blue chip prospect
   2919. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:13 PM (#4756905)
Which is why I see no reason we should nod our heads like dunces when some clown cites the founders as though there's some special received wisdom there that all must abide by. They were terribly wrong about slavery and they're wrong about plenty of other things as well.


Well I happen to think the principles which I quoted from the Declaration and Constitution are special and as close to received wisdom as I am likely to find in my lifetime, especially where the US is involved.

Do you disagree with those principles, and how is your disagreement less a matter of faith than my affirmation of those principles? if it isn't then you are chock full of meaningless asides, like your detour into a discussion of slavery and declaration that "Bigotry is bad" was just an assertion of faith.
   2920. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:18 PM (#4756908)
because the nation was also founded on the idea of separation of church and state (for the benefit of both I might add).

Actually it wasn't. It was founded on non-establishment (no state religion), and religion not being a bar to public office.. Outside of one letter from Thomas Jefferson, none of the founding documents, or literature surrounding them, suggest religion and religious ideas should not be able to influence the state and drive policy.

Whereas, Washington in his farewell address stated:

Of all the dispositions and habits, which lead to political prosperity, Religion and Morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of Patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of Men and Citizens. The mere Politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them. A volume could not trace all their connexions with private and public felicity. Let it simply be asked, Where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths, which are the instruments of investigation in Courts of Justice? And let us with caution indulge the supposition, that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect, that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.It is substantially true, that virtue or morality is a necessary spring of popular government. The rule, indeed, extends with more or less force to every species of free government. Who, that is a sincere friend to it, can look with indifference upon attempts to shake the foundation of the fabric?
   2921. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:18 PM (#4756909)
This situation simply doesn't fit into the 1964/1947 civil rights template. Virtually everything about it is different.


If by "virtually everything" you mean "SBB doesn't want to have to walk back civil rights for African Americans because he is smart enough to acknowledge the thrust of history when it's five decades old, but refuses to engage the civil rights of gays and lesbians because he has this narcissistic notion of himself as a great defender of 'real liberalism' against 'the modern liberal' and thinks this is a hill to fight for the right to stand up against the tide of poor oppressed heterosexuals having to live side by side with gays and lesbians, not to mention a chance to repeat "modern liberals" over and over again until he creams the mirror," perhaps.
   2922. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:20 PM (#4756910)
However perhaps you have some specific precepts that you are concerned I am jettisoning that are fundamental though. Specifics matter.

OK. The two most foundational are:

1) belief in absolute truth, and absolute standards of right and wrong in human behavior
2) individual (not collective) responsibility for moral action
   2923. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:22 PM (#4756912)
I've engaged the civil rights of gays and lesbians. I completely favor them. Always have.
   2924. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:23 PM (#4756913)
So at the time the Dodgers had to deal with day to day distractions at the major league level -- the actual analogue to the Rams -- Robinson Wes a blue chip prospect worth the distractions. Sam isn't a blue chip prospect

Maybe you can back that assertion by listing the percentage of SEC Defensive POYs who've made their NFL teams after being drafted, and compare it to the percentage of AAA stars who go on to have Major League careers. "Blue chip" is a rather subjective term that's only subject to verification on the field, not in a scouting combine.

And once again, the "distraction" issue was raised at the time of Robinson's signing, long before he was brought up to Brooklyn 18 months later. People both then and now are always looking for excuses to maintain the status quo. If Tony Dungy's cowardly attitude had been shared by Branch Rickey in 1945, Robinson would never have been signed in the first place.
   2925. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:29 PM (#4756918)
I've engaged the civil rights of gays and lesbians. I completely favor them. Always have.


Yes, I'm sure you have lots of gay friends.
   2926. BDC Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:29 PM (#4756919)
"Superstar" and "distraction" (like "blue chip") are subjective terms. The one black ballplayer most Americans (who cared) would have called a superstar in 1945/46 was Satchel Paige. He was also a terrific distraction. Fortunately, Bill Veeck liked distractions, and Paige helped the Indians win a World Series.

Dungy is in trouble (and to my mind pretty weak and forgivable trouble) for wanting it both ways: he claims to be a meritocrat, but implies that he would have chosen a lesser talent who didn't attract as much attention – even if a lot of the attention was going to be favorable. When you want things both ways you have to deal with people perceiving the contradictions.

As to Sam going so late in the draft, for every person who thinks he was only drafted because he's out, there's another who thinks he fell because he's out. There is no way of re-running that experiment.
   2927. Howie Menckel Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:31 PM (#4756922)

""Blue chip" is a rather subjective term that's only subject to verification on the field, not in a scouting combine."

"blue chip prospect" does not mean what you think it means - or rather, it does mean what you think it doesn't mean.

   2928. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:31 PM (#4756923)
That percentage is meaningless without the postseason games and the combine performance and the physical measurables. Sam's combine performance was poor/very poor. Compare and contrast Jackie's elite athletic ability -- the 10 flat 100, etc. Jackie had great tools, Sam has meh or lower tools.
   2929. Mefisto Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:32 PM (#4756924)
The two most foundational are:

1) belief in absolute truth, and absolute standards of right and wrong in human behavior
2) individual (not collective) responsibility for moral action


Those aren't "Christian", per se. Ayn Rand would subscribe to these, and she was an atheist.
   2930. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:35 PM (#4756926)
And then you might consider Sam's non-affirmative action award as the SEC defensive player of the year.

Here are the previous winners of that prestigious award.

http://www.sports-reference.com/cfb/awards/sec-dpoy.html


Year Player School Summary
2013 Michael Sam* Missouri 31 Solo 17 Ast 11.5 Sk
2012 Jarvis Jones* Georgia 52 Solo 33 Ast 14.5 Sk 1 Int
2011 Morris Claiborne* Louisiana State 32 Solo 19 Ast 0.0 Sk 6 Int
2010 Patrick Peterson* Louisiana State 29 Solo 13 Ast 0.0 Sk 4 Int
2009 Rolando McClain* Alabama 53 Solo 52 Ast 4.0 Sk 2 Int
2008 Eric Berry Tennessee 7 Att 37 Yds 5.3 Avg 0 TD
2007 Glenn Dorsey* Louisiana State 34 Solo 35 Ast 7.0 Sk 0 Int
2006 Patrick Willis Mississippi 87 Solo 50 Ast 3.0 Sk 0 Int
2005 Demeco Ryans* Alabama 41 Solo 35 Ast 5.0 Sk 1 Int
2004 David Pollack* Georgia
2003 Chad Lavalais* Louisiana State 1 Int -5 Yds 0 TD


One of those (Dorsey) was an injury bust, another (McClain) was a character bust, two had brief pro careers, and the rest are in the NFL today.

You can now find us a list of recent AAA batting champs and see how many of them are in the Majors. That's not a rhetorical challenge, as I have no idea what the percentage might be.
   2931. villageidiom Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:38 PM (#4756930)
Your assumptions are incorrect. Probably because you don't understand the definition of "conspiracy". There's no question that the media is engaging in the described behavior. The next step is to ask, "Cui bono?" That's an easy one, liberals. So then it's reasonable to wonder, "At whose behest?" If not liberals, then whom? Even if it's simply self-directed behavior by the liberals who comprise the media, it's still done by and for liberals.
And by similar logic robins make rain. They are in the sky where rain comes from, and it is to their benefit that rain chokes earthworms out of the soil, making them easier for robins to catch and eat. The rain must therefore fall at the behest of a conspiracy of robins. You fail to comprehend because you're so obviously anti-earthworm that you don't want to know the truth.

Anyway, most of what you state above are unsupported assertions. I'll treat them as you treat them.
Based on what? Your gut feelings? Again, take the faith based crap elsewhere.
Based on an empirical review of the line of "distraction" questions having been asked on numerous occasions for entirely apolitical reasons, and the Sam "distraction" questions being of the same nature.

Your rationale for why the questions are being asked is the most faith-based statement being made here.
The liberal agenda comes in the promotion of gay "rights" and the two minute hates directed at people who don't offer sufficiently enthusiastic support of said rights. The treatment of Dungy makes that abundantly clear.
The treatment of Dungy is what always happens when someone says something that offends people - whether or not the offending is merited, and whether or not the offended parties are actually offended or just looking for a fight.

I've not the inclination to delve into whether offended people are actually offended, or if their offense is merited, in this case. I suspect some of it is agenda-driven, if only on the basis that people pushing an agenda tend not to pass up an opportunity to push it, no matter how weak the opportunity is. But in all honesty I'm not interested in going through all the coverage and fisking it for agenda nuggets, as it's irrelevant to the point I'm trying to make. If you want to take my indifference as a victory, I suppose if you're that desperate for victories then go ahead.

However, it is one thing to say the onslaught on Dungy was agenda-driven, and another thing to suggest that the original distraction questions were part of the plan to accomplish that. There's nothing to this but robins and rain.

The questions on "distractions" are asked to generate either (a) distractions or (b) a stupid response, either of which can be used to further the news cycle. If it's stupid and furthers an agenda, great; if it's stupid and doesn't, also great. Sportswriters love stories that write themselves. This is why they go back to the "distraction" well so often.

I'll grant that what qualifies as "stupid" to liberal (or conservative) media members will vary somewhat from what qualifies to the general population. This can color what gets coverage, even in absence of a conspiracy to do so.

So would you say he was asking for it?
No. I would say he opened the door without a good enough consideration of what would come through it.

I'd say Tony Dungy, with his two Super Bowl rings and record setting coaching career knows a lot more about what is and isn't a distraction in the NFL than you or some fat media hack.
Non-responsive.
   2932. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:39 PM (#4756931)
Those aren't "Christian", per se. Ayn Rand would subscribe to these, and she was an atheist.

Atheist can have Christian beliefs, based on the culture they grow up in, or similar foundational beliefs can be reached through alternative avenues.
   2933. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:39 PM (#4756932)
OK. The two most foundational are:

1) belief in absolute truth, and absolute standards of right and wrong in human behavior
2) individual (not collective) responsibility for moral action


You always make this error. Few people - very, very few - punt a belief of fundamental ("absolute") truth. Even fewer punt standards of right and wrong. Many people have, and will continue to punt the notion that those fundamental truths and standards are exactly and only those dictated by the Church. The phrase "god is dead" isn't about moral or ethical standards of behavior. It's about the crumbling edifice of centralized authority to dictate what those ethical standards might be.
   2934. DJS and the Infinite Sadness Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:42 PM (#4756934)
AAA Batting Champs

2013 - Avisail Garcia/Eugenio Velez
2012 - Chris Parmelee/Adam Eaton
2011 - Denis Phipps/Scott Beerer
2010 - Barbaro Canizares/Brian Barden
2009 - Oscar Salazar/Jake Fox
2008 - Jay Bruce/Luis Maza
2007 - D'Angelo Jimenez/Nathan Haynes
2006 - Chris Denorfia/Jason Ellison
2005 - Ryan Howard/Rick Short
2004 - Charles Thomas/Larry Sutton
   2935. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:44 PM (#4756935)
Without the combine numbers the comps in 2930 are irrelevant.
   2936. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:46 PM (#4756936)
That percentage is meaningless without the postseason games and the combine performance and the physical measurables. Sam's combine performance was poor/very poor. Compare and contrast Jackie's elite athletic ability -- the 10 flat 100, etc. Jackie had great tools, Sam has meh or lower tools.

All that Robinson's "elite" tools meant was that he was a fast runner. There were no indications that he had more than at most 3 of the 5 tools that a baseball player is supposed to have. He had a weak arm, little demonstrated power, and no proven ability to hit or field beyond the Negro League level, at a time when the Negro Leagues were considered on the mid-level grade of the minor leagues. We're not talking about Bo Jackson here, and beyond that, he was 26 years old.

----------------------------------------------------------------------

""Blue chip" is a rather subjective term that's only subject to verification on the field, not in a scouting combine."

"blue chip prospect" does not mean what you think it means - or rather, it does mean what you think it doesn't mean.


A "blue chip" prospect as you're defining it is one who's considered to have potential for superstardom on the pro level. Neither Sam nor Robinson would have been considered "blue chip" at the time of their signings.



   2937. Greg K Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:46 PM (#4756937)
Actually it wasn't. It was founded on non-establishment (no state religion), and religion not being a bar to public office.. Outside of one letter from Thomas Jefferson, none of the founding documents, or literature surrounding them, suggest religion and religious ideas should not be able to influence the state and drive policy.

As always, I'm out of my element in American history, but I've always assumed the discussion of religious toleration and discrimination in the American colonies emerged out of the long tradition of such discussions in English political culture.

Of which the relevant elements are probably
A) recusancy fines for those who were not part of the Church of England (for American colonists I'm assuming they were more concerned about dissenters than Catholics here, but I suppose its the same principle).
B) as snapper mentions, the barring of dissenters and Catholics from public office and certain professions.
C) the jurisdiction of ecclesiastical courts which covered things like infidelity or libel and slander.

Which isn't to say separation of Church and State is a bad thing, just that I think when we talk about religious freedom and toleration in the 21st century we're talking about something different from the discussion in the 17th or 18th century. In fact, the dissenting tradition out of which a lot of the American colonists emerged wanted, if anything, a more intrinsic link between Church and State than England provided (it was just the wrong Church in power from their perspective).

As Bitter Mouse points out though, things change, and I think we can take these 18th century ideas of religious freedoms and apply them differently to our world. We just have to be conscious that that is what we are doing.
   2938. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:46 PM (#4756938)
You always make this error. Few people - very, very few - punt a belief of fundamental ("absolute") truth. Even fewer punt standards of right and wrong. Many people have, and will continue to punt the notion that those fundamental truths and standards are exactly and only those dictated by the Church. The phrase "god is dead" isn't about moral or ethical standards of behavior. It's about the crumbling edifice of centralized authority to dictate what those ethical standards might be.

And you make the error (or maybe it's not an error, just convenient) that you can have durable moral and ethical standards without a central authority. Leftist "moral and ethical" standards are infinitely plastic, to better allow the leftist to achieve whatever objective they want at that particular time.

You'll say "of course we believe in religious freedom", but then as soon as someone tries to express that freedom in a way that conflicts with your preferences there will always be a "compelling gov't interest" over-riding that freedom. You'll say "all we want is tolerance" for different lifestyles, then you'll pillory anyone whose tolerance doesn't extend to full-blown celebration. You'll say "of course we believe in private property" but then never find any actual limit on how much of it the state is justified in taking to meet the goals you want.
   2939. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:49 PM (#4756941)
AAA Batting Champs

2013 - Avisail Garcia/Eugenio Velez
2012 - Chris Parmelee/Adam Eaton
2011 - Denis Phipps/Scott Beerer
2010 - Barbaro Canizares/Brian Barden
2009 - Oscar Salazar/Jake Fox
2008 - Jay Bruce/Luis Maza
2007 - D'Angelo Jimenez/Nathan Haynes
2006 - Chris Denorfia/Jason Ellison
2005 - Ryan Howard/Rick Short
2004 - Charles Thomas/Larry Sutton


So how many of them have gone on to solid Major League careers?
   2940. Greg K Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:52 PM (#4756942)
So how many of them have gone on to solid Major League careers?

Ryan Howard, Jay Bruce obviously pass that bar.

Chris Denorfia certainly looks like a quality player, though he hasn't been an everyday player for much of his career.

D'Angelo Jimenez hung around a while. Parmelee doesn't look destined for a significant career.

Jury still out on Garcia and Eaton I'd imagine.
   2941. Mefisto Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:54 PM (#4756943)
or similar foundational beliefs can be reached through alternative avenues.


In which case those beliefs aren't specifically Christian.
   2942. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:55 PM (#4756944)
And you make the error (or maybe it's not an error, just convenient), that you can have durable moral and ethical standards without a central authority.


I don't have the time to go into this for a long debate - gotta catch a plane soon - but you mistake "celestially defined notions of mythical omnipotence" for "durable." I can tell you that due to the general evolution of the human brain structure that every human culture on the planet will abide by some form of the "golden rule" for in-group behaviors, inclusive of prohibition of murder within the in-group boundary; and will equally abide by some form of in-group preferencing where out-groups are treated as contemptible, disgusting, dangerous, dirty and "evil." All because that's how the brain chemistry of homo sapiens sapiens works. No super-Jewish sky fairy needed. No conveniently mapped to the post-Roman feudal social governance model congress of high priests needed. Just basic evolution.

And that's as universal as you need to get; facts built into the animal at the gut/DNA level. Is that "absolute truth?" Not in the sense of a magic meteorite of Good orbiting around the Superstation of Heavenly Asteroids sense, but certainly in the human social organization sense.
   2943. Greg K Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:56 PM (#4756947)
Just a further note to #2937, I'd be curious to know what the American framers thought of Catholics, as anti-Catholic bigotry played such a dominant role in the English tradition of religious thought. Though this had somewhat cooled off by the late 18th century...but really only in comparison to the intense paranoia of the 17th.
   2944. Howie Menckel Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:56 PM (#4756948)

"A "blue chip" prospect as you're defining it is one who's considered to have potential for superstardom on the pro level."

that's not my definition - that's exactly what "blue chip prospect" means. It's no more complicated than that. In spite of his college success, Sam is seen as a "tweener" - and thus, not a blue chip prospect.

No one drafted in the 7th round (or undrafted) is a "blue chip prospect."
   2945. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:57 PM (#4756949)
You'll say "of course we believe in religious freedom", but then as soon as someone tries to express that freedom in a way that conflicts with your preferences there will always be a "compelling gov't interest" over-riding that freedom.


No, Snapper. You have a right to religious expression. You don't have a right to establish your religious expression as legal doctrine against citizenry who don't share your mythos. You don't have to like or accept gay people. You don't have to marry gay people in your church. You just can't use the federal state to establish your religious preferences upon the citizenry at large. That's what the establishment clause is there to prevent.
   2946. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:58 PM (#4756950)
The phrase "blue chip prospect" is exactly as Howie is describing it. It's the phrase people use to separate the Mike Trouts and Bryce Harpers from the rest.
   2947. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:58 PM (#4756951)
In which case those beliefs aren't specifically Christian.

Well many of them are Judeo-Christian. But, to the extent they emerged from Christianity in a specific culture, they are Christian, if not exclusively Christian.

Very few moral beliefs are going to be exclusive to a specific religion. The fact that there are other religions who don't believe in divorce and remarriage, doesn't mean that that's not a Catholic teaching.
   2948. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: July 24, 2014 at 12:59 PM (#4756952)
Well many of them are Judeo-Christian.


You will not find a "universal" moral truth that is specifically Christian. Buddhists believe in prohibiting murder too.
   2949. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:00 PM (#4756953)
Just a further note to #2937, I'd be curious to know what the American framers thought of Catholics, as anti-Catholic bigotry played such a dominant role in the English tradition of religious thought. Though this had somewhat cooled off by the late 18th century...but really only in comparison to the intense paranoia of the 17th.

It varied widely. Washington was very "pro-Catholic", visiting Catholic Churches, advocating for full rights, to the point that there have been stories of a death bed conversion, or that he was a crypto-Catholic. Adams was pretty anti-Catholic.
   2950. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:02 PM (#4756954)
No, Snapper. You have a right to religious expression. You don't have a right to establish your religious expression as legal doctrine against citizenry who don't share your mythos. You don't have to like or accept gay people. You don't have to marry gay people in your church. You just can't use the federal state to establish your religious preferences upon the citizenry at large. That's what the establishment clause is there to prevent.

That's completely wrong. The establishment clause merely prevents the establishment of a national Church, extended to the states by the 14th A. The hint is in the term "establishment". It says nothing about people democratically enacting religious principles into law.

Slavery was abolished by people using the Federal state to enforce their religious preferences upon the citizenry at large. The Civil Rights laws were enacted by people using the Federal state to enforce their religious preferences upon the citizenry at large.

When you advocate the legalization of gay marriage you are trying to impose your religious preference upon your fellow citizens. Just because your religion doesn't invoke God, doesn't mean it's not faith based.
   2951. villageidiom Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:03 PM (#4756955)
And then you might consider Sam's non-affirmative action award as the SEC defensive player of the year.

Here are the previous winners of that prestigious award.
I'm sure you've noted that all but two of them were drafted in the first two rounds.

I don't want this to get in a pissing match about whether this implies Sam's relatively late drafting was discriminatory. There are legitimate questions, unlike with most of the other award recipients, about whether Sam's size and skills can translate to the NFL. There were similar questions about Tebow, which Tebow himself seems to have proven the questions worthy. My only point is that SEC Defensive Player of the Year is usually indicative of a talent level prized by the NFL. It's not the Jackie Robinson athletic profile, but it's significant.

Which brings me to...
So Michael Sam is Jackie Robinson. Okay.
Since I brought up Robinson, I'm going to take a moment to make something clear.

Sam and Robinson should not be equated. It was never my intent for them to be equated. I brought up Robinson to illustrate that Ray's comments on Sam could have been directed easily toward Robinson back in the day. His comments ignored all that was distinctive about the player, and focused on the superficial. That was my point. They don't need to be similar in any other way to make that point.

   2952. Rickey! trades in sheep and threats Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:07 PM (#4756956)
Slavery was abolished by people using the Federal state to enforce their religious preferences upon the citizenry at large. The Civil Rights laws were enacted by people using the Federal state to enforce their religious preferences upon the citizenry at large.


And if your religious views were more directed towards removing state supported infringements on human liberty, your religious expressions would be more aligned with the national charter, come into less conflict with constitutional ideals, and be more moral rather than rote repetitions of previous generations' doctrinal mistakes. If your religious expression requires the state to deny "the wrong type" of citizen their rights in order to preserve your religious feel-goods, then you are swimming against the tide of both history and American constitutional law. The equal protection clause supercedes your desire to write religious doctrine as federal law.

When you advocate the legalization of gay marriage you are trying to impose your religious preference upon your fellow citizens.


No. Not at all. When I advocate for the legalization of gay marriage I am stating explicitly that the rights of the minority to equal treatment under the law are more important than your right to not be offended in the public square.
   2953. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:09 PM (#4756959)
And you make the error (or maybe it's not an error, just convenient), that you can have durable moral and ethical standards without a central authority.


Plato showed in the Euthyphro that if you can't have them without a central authority, you can't have them with one.
   2954. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:15 PM (#4756961)
No. Not at all. When I advocate for the legalization of gay marriage I am stating explicitly that the rights of the minority to equal treatment under the law are more important than your right to not be offended in the public square.

Then it's a mere preference.

The statement "all men are created equal" is a religious principal, at the end of the day. "Equality under the law" is either a religious principal, or a mere preference.
   2955. BDC Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:27 PM (#4756972)
It varied widely

Yes. A few of the Founders were Catholic, notably the Carrolls of Maryland and Thomas Fitzsimons of Pennsylvania (the two colonies most tolerant of Catholicism). Others, like George Mason of Virginia, were absolute on the matter of religious freedom and didn't really draw distinctions among various faiths.

James Wilson of Pennsylvania is a very interesting thinker on both religious freedom and the intersection of religious and secular morality. He too was an unequivocal advocate of religious rights and equality, though he drew a lot of his principles from his own religion (Anglican).

But there was certainly anti-Catholicism too, especially in New England. One sometimes elided factor in the Revolution was the fear that Parliament, having established the Catholic Church in Quebec in 1774, might do so in other colonies.
   2956. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:37 PM (#4756981)
I went out to lunch - had yummy Pad Thai. Sorry I missed so much.

OK. The two most foundational are:

1) belief in absolute truth, and absolute standards of right and wrong in human behavior
2) individual (not collective) responsibility for moral action


Where have I suggested jettisoning those, hacking them away, from the governance of the US?

Personally I am extremely skeptical of any absolute truth (especially as regards morals), but I most certainly advocate (and will continue to do so) a US which acts as if Murder and Slavery (to use two examples) were absolutely wrong. Even if I personally am not sure if they are in fact absolutely wrong, that does not suggest I want to hack those ideals away from my country.

And I do strongly believe in individual responsibility, but I also believe in collective responsibility and I am pretty sure the founding fathers and many others agree with me - for example both documents I quoted strongly reference collective responsibility and collective action. I strongly reject the notion that our nation was founded on the precept that individual responsibility is paramount and there is no collective responsibility.

Atheist can have Christian beliefs, based on the culture they grow up in, or similar foundational beliefs can be reached through alternative avenues.


Seems to disagree strongly with
And you make the error (or maybe it's not an error, just convenient) that you can have durable moral and ethical standards without a central authority. Leftist "moral and ethical" standards are infinitely plastic, to better allow the leftist to achieve whatever objective they want at that particular time.


If I, as a "leftist" value individual freedom you are both suggesting it is just as valid as if I got it from Christianity AND suggesting it is not as valid. It cannot be both ways. If your assertion is that beliefs with the backing of mysticism are some how better than those same beliefs without that backing, well my assertion is that you are full of beans.

The statement "all men are created equal" is a religious principal, at the end of the day. "Equality under the law" is either a religious principal, or a mere preference.


Wrong both times. The first is a philosophical statement with religion being neither necessary nor sufficient. The second is a principle of governance. It is a practical statement that suggests that even if there are real differences, the law shall be applied equally. Not by preference, rather by mandate (even if in the real and complex rule not every mandate is always followed).
   2957. bunyon Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:37 PM (#4756982)
"Equality under the law" is either a religious principal, or a mere preference.

Religious doctrine is a man-made construct and, thus, no different than any other man-made construct. Freedom of religion requires that religion not be given bonus points in determining policy).

Or, to put it in the most argumentative terms: Why are the dictates of your imaginary friend more important than others' careful consideration?

   2958. The Good Face Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:39 PM (#4756986)
Well I happen to think the principles which I quoted from the Declaration and Constitution are special and as close to received wisdom as I am likely to find in my lifetime, especially where the US is involved.


Cool story bro.

Do you disagree with those principles, and how is your disagreement less a matter of faith than my affirmation of those principles? if it isn't then you are chock full of meaningless asides, like your detour into a discussion of slavery and declaration that "Bigotry is bad" was just an assertion of faith.


I'm not the guy making religious assertions like "Bigotry is bad!" and declaring them received wisdom. If I was claiming "Bigotry is good!" then perhaps you could attempt to turn things around on me. But I'm not. Reality is more complicated than religious believers usually are willing to contemplate, and this issue is no exception.

And by similar logic robins make rain. They are in the sky where rain comes from, and it is to their benefit that rain chokes earthworms out of the soil, making them easier for robins to catch and eat. The rain must therefore fall at the behest of a conspiracy of robins. You fail to comprehend because you're so obviously anti-earthworm that you don't want to know the truth.


That's some quality insane troll logic, but it has zero bearing on what I said and is a complete non-sequitur.

Anyway, most of what you state above are unsupported assertions. I'll treat them as you treat them.


So in addition to not understanding conspiracies, I see that you also can't comprehend the difference between unsupported assertions and statements supported by evidence.

Based on an empirical review of the line of "distraction" questions having been asked on numerous occasions for entirely apolitical reasons, and the Sam "distraction" questions being of the same nature.

Your rationale for why the questions are being asked is the most faith-based statement being made here.


Some funny self-refutation there. Your claim that the questions are "entirely apolitical" IS faith-based. They're only "entirely apolitical" because you want and need them to be.

The treatment of Dungy is what always happens when someone says something that offends people - whether or not the offending is merited, and whether or not the offended parties are actually offended or just looking for a fight.

I've not the inclination to delve into whether offended people are actually offended, or if their offense is merited


If he hasn't actually offended people, then why would or should he be treated as though he said something that offends people?

I suspect some of it is agenda-driven


That's why. Ah, a rare and admirable bit of honesty and self-awareness.

If you want to take my indifference as a victory, I suppose if you're that desperate for victories then go ahead.


Your churlish concession is accepted.

However, it is one thing to say the onslaught on Dungy was agenda-driven, and another thing to suggest that the original distraction questions were part of the plan to accomplish that.

The questions on "distractions" are asked to generate either (a) distractions or (b) a stupid response, either of which can be used to further the news cycle. If it's stupid and furthers an agenda, great; if it's stupid and doesn't, also great.


There's no other purpose for it. Tragically for the sportswriters, the demand for homophobia in professional sports FAR outstrips the supply. So they constantly beat the bushes and kick the waters trying to find a few errant particles here or there than they can then get all outraged about (which also burnishes their status as holier-than-thou).

So would you say he was asking for it?

No. I would say he opened the door without a good enough consideration of what would come through it.


So that rape victim wasn't asking for it, but by walking down the street in THAT outfit, she had opened a door without a good enough consideration of what would come through it. Thanks for that clarification.

I'd say Tony Dungy, with his two Super Bowl rings and record setting coaching career knows a lot more about what is and isn't a distraction in the NFL than you or some fat media hack.

Non-responsive.


Not at all. You posted some political drivel as a proposed "statement" for Dungy to make. I'm suggesting that Dungy's understand of the situation far exceeds your own (which it does), and that we should give greater weight to his established knowledge and expertise than your bruised sensitivities.
   2959. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:40 PM (#4756990)
It varied widely


Which is why they wanted the separation between Church and State. Which, despite red herrings up thread to the contrary, has never meant in any context I am familiar with that the Church has no influence, that government must be done pure from any taint of religion, that religion cannot inform the laws and practices of the nation. That would be nuts and quite impossible. The founders were much more pragmatic - despite their lofty ideals and language - than that.
   2960. Lassus Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:45 PM (#4756993)
The statement "all men are created equal" is a religious principal, at the end of the day. "Equality under the law" is either a religious principal, or a mere preference.

What? Jesus, no.


Why are the dictates of your imaginary friend more important than others' careful consideration?

Because to him, it's not imaginary, it's fact. Everything else is imaginary.


So that rape victim wasn't asking for it, but by walking down the street in THAT outfit, she had opened a door without a good enough consideration of what would come through it.

To some, only certain types of Godwinning are attractive.

   2961. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:47 PM (#4756995)
I'm not the guy making religious assertions like "Bigotry is bad!" and declaring them received wisdom. If I was claiming "Bigotry is good!" then perhaps you could attempt to turn things around on me. But I'm not. Reality is more complicated than religious believers usually are willing to contemplate, and this issue is no exception.


I did not make that assertion either. However the principles the US is built on are contrary to the principles behind bigotry. it is not received wisdom, but for purposes of governing the nation it as as close as it is possible to get.

And as for your weaseling around the bigotry matter, you are being too cute by half. You engage in an never ending jeremiad (still the correct usage) on the issue of people being mean to other people expressing bigoted ideas, all you do is express outrage and assign nasty agendas to those who would fight against bigotry, and yet you proclaim neutrality on this issue, hiding behind pablum.

"It's complicated, I could never explain it, I would rather complain solely about one side - but that doesn't mean I am FOR the other side."

All entirely too pat, like you are in a defensive crouch, willing to go so far but no further in defense of your ideals.
   2962. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 01:51 PM (#4757003)
Because to him, it's not imaginary, it's fact. Everything else is imaginary.


Which is fine, but he doesn't get to run all society to judge everyone else as if we share his belief. Everyone gets to believe they are correct, but in a democratic, pluralistic society to have to allow for others believing what they do. And that is my central issue with most of the flavors of conservatism (and some unappealing flavors on the left as well), they don't acknowledge the truth that we are all the hero of our own story, that everyone has a point of view.
   2963. The Good Face Posted: July 24, 2014 at 02:13 PM (#4757020)
I did not make that assertion either. However the principles the US is built on are contrary to the principles behind bigotry.


Like slavery? You keep playing this pick and choose game with the principles the US was built on. I get that you like some and you don't like others, but they were all founding principles. If the founders were wrong about slavery, why should we assume they were right about the stuff that you just so happen to agree with?

And as for your weaseling around the bigotry matter, you are being too cute by half.


At this point in my life I'm more ruggedly handsome. Anyway, I'm flattered and maybe even a little bit curious, but I'm going to have to turn you down.

You engage in an never ending jeremiad (still the correct usage) on the issue of people being mean to other people expressing bigoted ideas,


I support free speech and more importantly, I support the truth. People are shouted down and often punished for expressing ideas that are unpopular or contrary to the dominant liberal narrative, regardless of the veracity of those ideas, and that's called "bigotry". I think that's a problem for society. I suppose I'm drifting closer to jeremiad territory as the thread goes on, so if you keep at it you'll probably use it correctly one of these days!

all you do is express outrage and assign nasty agendas to those who would fight against bigotry


I have no respect for holier-than-thou political commissars and witch hunters, no. They're nothing but empowered bigots themselves.

and yet you proclaim neutrality on this issue, hiding behind pablum.


I'm sorry if my writings aren't simplistic and black & white enough for you to follow. Unfortunately, the world is complex and nuanced. What are you having a hard time understanding, perhaps I can help?

   2964. rr Posted: July 24, 2014 at 02:15 PM (#4757021)
I'm suggesting that Dungy's understand of the situation far exceeds your own (which it does), and that we should give greater weight to his established knowledge and expertise


Ha. Classic, coming from you.
   2965. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 02:19 PM (#4757022)
Like slavery? You keep playing this pick and choose game with the principles the US was built on. I get that you like some and you don't like others, but they were all founding principles. If the founders were wrong about slavery, why should we assume they were right about the stuff that you just so happen to agree with?


Slavery was not a founding principle. It was a compromise, a pragmatic one, to allow the nation to hold together in its infancy. It was a regrettable compromise, but one that was probably inevitable. the principles I am choosing are mostly right there at the top. Heck I even quoted them*. I don't remember seeing your favorite distraction anywhere there.

I'm sorry if my writings aren't simplistic and black & white enough for you to follow.


You are not much for comprehension are you? I never said I wasn't following you. I understand the nuance of what you are saying, how you say it and what you don't say, quite well. Just like I follow the true meaning behind all your "Race" and genetics talk. It really isn't tough to ferret out what you really think and feel. Ugly yes, but not very tough. I just think you are a bit weenie about refusing to come out and just say it is all. But you are probably a bit ashamed, which is understandable.

* One way you know I am not picking and choosing at whim is I personally don't believe in a creator. However, it clearly is a principle the founders believed in, so I include it, despite it being in disagreement with my beliefs.
   2966. Mefisto Posted: July 24, 2014 at 02:20 PM (#4757024)
Slavery was abolished by people using the Federal state to enforce their religious preferences upon the citizenry at large.


Slavery was also enacted and supported by people using the power of the state (including, in some ways, the Federal state) to enforce their religious preferences on others. The 13th A makes no mention of religion for the very good reason that religion may have motivated some to abolish slavery, but wasn't the reason for it. The same is true of the CRA and, more important, the VRA.
   2967. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 02:21 PM (#4757025)
Sam and Robinson should not be equated. It was never my intent for them to be equated. I brought up Robinson to illustrate that Ray's comments on Sam could have been directed easily toward Robinson back in the day. His comments ignored all that was distinctive about the player, and focused on the superficial.


All that's distinctive about Sam relative to other NFL draftees/players is that he's gay. Sure, he's a better football player than 99.99 or whatever percent of the population, and he's good enough to be drafted into the NFL -- which is a great accomplishment -- but that doesn't distinguish him from scores of other football players, 250 some odd collegiate players plus however many NFL players there are. And yet there is a ton of attention being paid to him.
   2968. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 02:23 PM (#4757026)
On to more immediate things, like an election. Very good article, No partisan wave building for fall elections, but GOP gains likely.

The latest evidence comes from new polling by the Pew Research Center, which shows Republicans holding an advantage in enthusiasm about the November election, but at a significantly lower level than they had in 2010 or Democrats had four years earlier.

Among registered voters who said they side with the GOP, 45% reported they were more enthusiastic than usual about voting, the Pew survey showed. Among Democratic voters, 37% did so. That eight-point gap in enthusiasm compares with a 13-point advantage the GOP had at this point four years ago, and a 17-point Democratic advantage in 2006.

Other measures of voter engagement, such as the number who say that they are closely following the election or that they are certain to vote, provide similar results -- a Republican edge, but by a smaller margin than in 2010.


Too much good stuff there to totally do it justice, so read it all.
   2969. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 24, 2014 at 02:49 PM (#4757047)
Regarding BM's article, I'll quote this part to tweak YC:

Overall, slightly more voters see the midterm election as a chance to vote against Obama (28%) than for him (23%). He appears, however, to be less of a motivating factor in the vote than President George W. Bush was in his 6th year in office. Going into the midterm election that year, 38% of voters saw their ballot as a chance to vote against Bush, only 15% said it was a chance to vote for him.


Anyway, what I found interesting was that half the "motivated" conservative voters said they saw the midterms as a chance to vote against Obama
on the liberal side the self reported "motivated" ones saw control of Congress as being important.

   2970. BDC Posted: July 24, 2014 at 02:54 PM (#4757053)
Like slavery? You keep playing this pick and choose game with the principles the US was built on

It's more complicated than that. Sure, lots of Framers were slaveholders, and the Constitution was drafted to preserve slaveholder interests, as Mouse notes. But the rhetoric of both the Declaration and the Constitution is often colorblind, genderblind, incipiently sexual-orientation-blind: IOW universal. Admittedly, there were highly relative idealists among the Founders who probably thought that all this "created equal" and "blessings of liberty" stuff would only ever be construed to apply to straight white male property owners. But the language was there, unequivocal, and would later on become highly inspirational to radical egalitarians of all sorts.
   2971. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 02:55 PM (#4757054)
I went out to lunch - had yummy Pad Thai


Elitist snob. Real Americans like me had chili dogs.

(Actually, I love Thai food. When I moved here, I had Thai places about a mile from either side of my house. One, alas, has moved; the other changed owners & is still good, but it's not convenient to work, though I had a neat tofu dish just a couple of days ago as takeout when I found myself running an errand in the area around lunchtime.)

   2972. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:02 PM (#4757063)
Elitist snob. Real Americans like me had chili dogs.


The snobs are the people who run the place. They always ask my coworker (from India) how spicy he wants it and assume Medium. Me they never ask, and if I want it spicier than mild I have to speak up. It must be because I am short. :)

There is plenty of great food near here. Just walked to a Chinese Indian place (owners, a couple, are one of each) yesterday and it was very good (though not quite as good as the place I drove to today).
   2973. Lassus Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:05 PM (#4757065)
Anyway, what I found interesting was that half the "motivated" conservative voters said they saw the midterms as a chance to vote against Obama

This can't be true, conservatives operate on principle, not whim.
   2974. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:05 PM (#4757067)
There is plenty of great food near here. Just walked to a Chinese Indian place (owners, a couple, are one of each) yesterday and it was very good (though not quite as good as the place I drove to today).


Whereas here on the AFB we have the (fast-)food court & a meat-&-three (where I had lunch) across the street, & that's it. First-world problems, of course.
   2975. Greg K Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:17 PM (#4757076)
The snobs are the people who run the place. They always ask my coworker (from India) how spicy he wants it and assume Medium. Me they never ask, and if I want it spicier than mild I have to speak up. It must be because I am short. :)

I've come to realize I'm a bit of a Chinese food snob, though I didn't know it until adult life. I grew up in a pretty much exclusively Chinese neighbourhood. So without thinking about it my rule of thumb has always been, if there's English on the menu the place stinks (at the very least there can be English translations, but they have to be barely comprehensible). If there's more than one or two other white people in there, it's awful. If the dining room is neat and tidy I'm out of there immediately. Preferable, but not deal breaks are servers who don't really speak English, and the occasional whole pig lying around in the eating area.
   2976. The Good Face Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:23 PM (#4757087)
Ha. Classic, coming from you.


Perfectly consistent. If we were having a discussion on the pedagogy of teaching English for Cab Drivers 101, I'd listen respectfully to your input.

Slavery was not a founding principle.


It was right there in the founding document. The whole thing was a compromise, and I see no reason to privilege the bits you like over the bits you don't.

I understand the nuance of what you are saying, how you say it and what you don't say, quite well. Just like I follow the true meaning behind all your "Race" and genetics talk. It really isn't tough to ferret out what you really think and feel.


Quick, what number am I thinking of?

Look, I appreciate the laugh, but you struggle to understand and articulate your own beliefs, so I'm not really buying your ability to read the thoughts of others.

I just think you are a bit weenie about refusing to come out and just say it is all.


I'm a weenie because I'm not confirming the voices in your head? Did it ever occur to you that perhaps your understanding of other people is as profoundly flawed as your mind? I mean, your track record is pretty dreadful...
   2977. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:26 PM (#4757091)
Religious doctrine is a man-made construct and, thus, no different than any other man-made construct. Freedom of religion requires that religion not be given bonus points in determining policy).

Or, to put it in the most argumentative terms: Why are the dictates of your imaginary friend more important than others' careful consideration?


Agree completely. Religious convictions are no more important, but also no less important, than convictions reached through other means.

What I am arguing against is the exclusion of religious principals and convictions from the public discourse.
   2978. Greg K Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:26 PM (#4757094)
There is plenty of great food near here. Just walked to a Chinese Indian place (owners, a couple, are one of each) yesterday and it was very good (though not quite as good as the place I drove to today).

One of my favourite restaurants is a Hakka place. As far as I can tell most of the Hakka in Canada come from a group that migrated from around Hong Kong to India before eventually settling in Canada. You can really tell the Indian influence in their cuisine, which is I guess Chinese at the core, with a dash or two of Indian thrown in.

Though it kind of sounds like the place you're referring to is just straight up fusion.
   2979. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:27 PM (#4757096)
referable, but not deal breaks are servers who don't really speak English, and the occasional whole pig lying around in the eating area.


Assuming the pig is a live one, you'd be in hog heaven (no pun intended) in just about any Alabama restaurant, ethnic or otherwise.
   2980. Greg K Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:28 PM (#4757098)
Assuming the pig is a live one, you'd be in hog heaven (no pun intended) in just about any Alabama restaurant, ethnic or otherwise.

The only good pig is a dead pig!

That someone has cooked for me.
   2981. snapper (history's 42nd greatest monster) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:29 PM (#4757102)
What? Jesus, no.

Yes. All men are clearly not created equal, in any material sense. Some are strong, some are weak, some are beautiful, some are ugly, some are smart, some are dumb.

A materialist argument could easily say, "Why shouldn't the strong, smart, beautiful people have more rights and privileges? They're genetically superior, and we want them reproducing more."

The conviction that "All men are created equal and endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights...", is a religious statement, that says all people have certain rights based on a fundamental human dignity, that comes from their common creator.
   2982. Greg K Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:30 PM (#4757105)
Speaking of restaurants...has everyone else experienced the Pho trend in the past 10 years or so, or was/is that just a Toronto thing?

It appears to have died down a bit, but about 5 years ago it seemed like every new restaurant opening in Toronto was a pho place. The bubble seems to have burst, though luckily my favourite one is still thriving. It still remains the only vehicle through which I can enjoy tripe.
   2983. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:31 PM (#4757107)
It was right there in the founding document. The whole thing was a compromise, and I see no reason to privilege the bits you like over the bits you don't.


Not every word is principle. It is a complex thought, well no it isn't, but still it has eluded you. But keep ducking and dodging the Declaration of Independence and the Preamble to the Constitution and pretending they contain equal statements of principle to the following deathless prose:

Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective Numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons, including those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons. The actual Enumeration shall be made within three Years after the first Meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years, in such Manner as they shall by Law direct. The Number of Representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty Thousand, but each State shall have at Least one Representative; and until such enumeration shall be made, the State of New Hampshire shall be entitled to chuse three, Massachusetts eight, Rhode-Island and Providence Plantations one, Connecticut five, New-York six, New Jersey four, Pennsylvania eight, Delaware one, Maryland six, Virginia ten, North Carolina five, South Carolina five, and Georgia three.


Feel the principle I am ignoring. Feel it!
   2984. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:34 PM (#4757109)
What I am arguing against is the exclusion of religious principals and convictions from the public discourse.


Which exactly no one is arguing for. Many of are arguing you don't get to preference one set of religious principals and convictions in the public discourse, but of course everyone is expected to be informed by their own principles and convictions (Religious or non-religious).
   2985. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:34 PM (#4757110)
Speaking of restaurants...has everyone else experienced the Pho trend in the past 10 years or so, or was/is that just a Toronto thing?


There's apparently a new one here, to go with a couple of already-established ones, or so I'm told. I'm completely unacquainted with whatever this is, though. Something to do with Asian noodles or something?
   2986. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:35 PM (#4757111)
All that's distinctive about Sam relative to other NFL draftees/players is that he's gay. Sure, he's a better football player than 99.99 or whatever percent of the population, and he's good enough to be drafted into the NFL -- which is a great accomplishment -- but that doesn't distinguish him from scores of other football players, 250 some odd collegiate players plus however many NFL players there are. And yet there is a ton of attention being paid to him.

And you the flaming libertarian and me the flaming liberal both agree that the media should just give it a rest, and let Sam's future be decided solely on his ability. Agreed?
   2987. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:36 PM (#4757113)
Speaking of restaurants...has everyone else experienced the Pho trend in the past 10 years or so, or was/is that just a Toronto thing?


No here also*. My friend from Laos was always trying to drag us to various Pho places, and there still are plenty around. As for me it is soup. And soup is not my favorite. I am just not a huge fan of soup, except every once in a great while.

* Of course MN is in some ways Canada, so this may not really answer your question.
   2988. Greg K Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:40 PM (#4757116)
There's apparently a new one here, to go with a couple of already-established ones, or so I'm told. I'm completely unacquainted with whatever this is, though. Something to do with Asian noodles or something?

My brother has the most pithy description I've heard: smells like gym socks in a broth that looks like your sink after washing the dishes.

Pretty much noodles with various parts of cow thrown in (a good restaurant with offer any combination of brisket, tendon, flank, tripe, meatballs...or any other cow product you can think of). The stuff like thin cuts of steak are usually thrown in very rare and cook a bit in the soup at your table.

The broth is what makes it though. Apparently doing it right takes several hours to prepare.

EDIT: Oh yeah and the other thing is that it is soup you eat with chopsticks. Which doesn't sound like it works, but it does.
   2989. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:41 PM (#4757117)
And you the flaming libertarian and me the flaming liberal both agree that the media should just give it a rest, and let Sam's future be decided solely on his ability. Agreed?


I have no problem with that. But I still think if a head coach decided he wanted his team to focus on football rather than on this sideshow, that would be a legitimate decision, wholly justifiable.

With Jackie Robinson, did the media at the time of his acquisition by the Dodgers universally paint him as a hero? Because that's what's happened with Sam, and I will defer to others on the history of Robinson but my understanding is that he had to deal with a hell of a lot of crap from a lot of mainstream sportswriters/media figures. They were far from universally supportive of him. They didn't have his back. So the comparison is just one big fail, all the way around.
   2990. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:43 PM (#4757118)
#2988 -- OK ... yeah. Like Bitter Mouse, sounds like this wouldn't be my thing. Soup I generally want only when it's cold &/or I feel really poorly. The only pho-type places here are too far from me for me to make the drive under such circumstances, at least as long as there's I'm basically a stone's-throw one two standard Chinese places & one Thai restaurant.
   2991. Greg K Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:47 PM (#4757122)
OK ... yeah. Like Bitter Mouse, sounds like this wouldn't be my thing.

My main problem is that I haven't really met a kind of food that isn't my thing (which becomes fairly obvious upon meeting me).

I can be a snob within food groupings (for instance I find hot dogs disgusting but love a good sausage)...but I pretty much find a way to like any style of sustenance I come across. Though I haven't ventured into eating insects yet.
   2992. Slivers of Maranville descends into chaos (SdeB) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:53 PM (#4757128)

What I am arguing against is the exclusion of religious principals and convictions from the public discourse.


Religious principles and convictions comprise 95% of public discourse, so I don't think you have much to fear there.
   2993. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: July 24, 2014 at 03:54 PM (#4757129)
My main problem is that I haven't really met a kind of food that isn't my thing (which becomes fairly obvious upon meeting me).


That's actually the case for me, I suppose. For "wouldn't be my thing," read: "wouldn't be something I'd drive a few miles for in preference to any number of the probably two dozen places between here & there."
   2994. spike Posted: July 24, 2014 at 04:02 PM (#4757134)
Please, everyone - religious principles, not religious principals although both certainly exist.

/thank you SoM
   2995. Bitter Mouse Posted: July 24, 2014 at 04:03 PM (#4757136)
Religious principles and convictions comprise 95% of public discourse, so I don't think you have much to fear there.


The weather being the other 5% I guess? Darn forgot about Global Warming. You might be undershooting it.
   2996. BDC Posted: July 24, 2014 at 04:14 PM (#4757142)
Pho is the staple Vietnamese dish. Arlington TX, which has a very large Vietnamese community, has dozens of pho places of long standing, and everybody has their favorite. It is as Greg describes it, though I demur at the gym-socks characterization :) The dominant notes are anise and lime. Good pho will have a base of rice noodles, thicker than fettucine, and you add beansprouts and herbs of various sorts (Thai basil, perilla). Some people add jalapeño, but maybe that's a Texas pho. There is usually beef as Greg describes it, not too much. You can get chicken pho.

I do remember a phase where there were some higher-concept pho places opening in droves in Austin and Dallas, but the best pho for my money is to be had in run-down strip-mall storefront non-chain places, and Arlington is one of the centers of American pho culture. On a typical menu there will be about 64 kinds of pho, permutations on the basic idea, and you should order by number unless your Vietnamese is good, because nobody will understand if you try to pronounce the words.

I've even had pho for breakfast, though I don't know how standard that is. A friend of mine who is an old Hanoi hand swore by it, with extremely thick and strong coffee. It'll certainly rehydrate you if needed.

   2997. steagles Posted: July 24, 2014 at 04:21 PM (#4757146)
Speaking of restaurants...has everyone else experienced the Pho trend in the past 10 years or so, or was/is that just a Toronto thing?
you have to do it right.

break up the noodles with your chopsticks. squirt in some rooster sauce. eat everything in the bowl. dump in some bean sprouts. eat all of them. then pick the bowl up with two hands and drink whatever broth is left.

there's a pho place right down the street from me, and it's really good, really close and really cheap, so it's basically where i go anytime i want a quick meal or a cheap meal or pho, which means i get there a lot.


one thing i'll say is that you shouldn't just limit yourself to ordering pho. unless my place is just better than everywhere else, i've gotten stir fried pork there that's really good; they have really good fried squid. there was some noodly saucy thing that was really good.
   2998. zenbitz Posted: July 24, 2014 at 04:21 PM (#4757147)
The weirdest thing about Pho is that it's pronounced "Fuh". I am not partial to the version with tendons and tripe but usually you have to find it special.

Great stuff, all over the west coast. The other vietnamese dish I like is Pork and Egg Rolls over vermcelli.

EDIT: Huh, put in the bean sprouts LAST. Never thought of that.
   2999. spike Posted: July 24, 2014 at 04:21 PM (#4757148)
Pho and ca phe sua da* are a typical breakfast pick in all of Indochina. There is a spectacular assortment of pho places here in Atlanta, but almost all are pretty humble. The offerings are pretty standard, although taste does vary, and it seems we get much meatier versions here. I take mine with the full monty - raw steak on the side, extra sliced onion and sesame chili oil.

(chicory coffee espresso and sweetened condensed milk over ice - almost always Cafe Du Monde)
   3000. zenbitz Posted: July 24, 2014 at 04:22 PM (#4757149)

Convictions are just whims made with a grimace.
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