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Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Posnanski: Boo Boos

You got Joe straight trippin’, boo!

I hear people talking now about how there should be a “rule” that a local player should be in the Home Run Derby. That’s seems impossibly dumb to me—we need a rule for something that logical? Rule: You should invite the bride’s parents to the wedding. Rule: When hosting a charity roast, invite people who know the subject. Isn’t it kind of obvious that you might want a local player in something as aimless and trivial as the Home Run Derby? It’s a meaningless exhibition event inside a meaningless exhibition weekend—throw the local fans a bone, for crying out loud. Maybe baseball messed up by putting [Robinson] Cano in the line of fire rather than just insisting that a local player be chosen, but come on. This isn’t that hard.

Some found the booing offensive. Some thought it was classless. More than one person ripped KC to me, and later in print and comment. I have to admit, I didn’t see it that way. At all. For one thing, Cano is a Yankee, and the day it becomes uncool to boo the Yankees is the day we need to reevaluate what the national pastime is all about. For another, it’s just booing. I’m not a booer myself, and I usually dislike the “fans paid their ticket they can do what they want” argument, but in this case—you’re telling me that fans who pay 200 bucks a pop to sit in the upper deck to watch executive batting practice should cheer the guy who didn’t take the local player? Seriously? This is Wimbledon now? ...

I have no doubt that Cano’s struggles—the fouling back pitches, the way his long fly balls hit the wall—made the fans boo him more. If there’s one thing fans love more than anything it is their ability to affect the game. You’ve no doubt seen the self-congratulatory joy of people waving behind the backboard when a guy misses a free throw. I suspect the fans came in planning to boo Cano, but then they saw him foul that ball back. They thought: Hey, this is working. So they booed him a little louder. And a little louder. And a little louder. Until, at the end, the whole stadium wanted desperately for Cano to hit zero home runs, and the boos expressed that hope.

From what I can tell, Cano took the boos in stride. He tweeted out a couple of funny little bits—“I can’t believe I have so many fans in KC lol”—and he’s now part of Home Run Derby lore. I have little doubt he’ll be fine—he’s one of the great hitters in the game. I also have little doubt he will get booed whenever he comes to KC—it’s grown into legend now. The only thing I wish had happened was for [Billy] Butler himself to have come out during the Derby, put his arm around Cano, maybe waved a white flag. That would have been cool. And maybe, with three or four outs to go, Cano would have turned the bat over to Butler. They should really have a lot more fun at these things.

The District Attorney Posted: July 10, 2012 at 11:28 PM | 187 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: all-star game, home run derby, joe posnanski, robinson cano, royals

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   101. jacksone (AKA It's OK...) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 03:00 PM (#4181180)
My point was that he was slapped with the "Show-cause" sanction by the NCAA for "unethical conduct", not AFAIK, for technically breaking any rules,


Failure to report known violations to the NCAA is a punishable offense. Tressel broke the rules.
   102. Forsch 10 From Navarone (Dayn) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 03:01 PM (#4181181)
In the interest of saving Jim the headache, here's the ongoing college football thread.
   103. Moloka'i Three-Finger Brown (Declino DeShields) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 03:01 PM (#4181184)
In fairness (I guess), this wasn't really intended to be a biography. It was intended to be the type of book that sits prominently on a front table at your local Barnes & Noble, next to trash fiction and some newsmaker's rantings about the other party.
   104. Monty Predicts a Padres-Mariners WS in 2016 Posted: July 12, 2012 at 03:05 PM (#4181190)
I don't see how Pos can publish his book at this point. "Joe Paterno" means something different than it did when he started.
   105. Lassus Posted: July 12, 2012 at 03:17 PM (#4181206)
In the interest of saving Jim the headache, here's the ongoing college football thread.

Just what I was about to do, everyone should head over there and let this one die.
   106. RoyalsRetro (AG#1F) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 03:24 PM (#4181210)
So in sum, Boo to Cano.
   107. The Id of SugarBear Blanks Posted: July 12, 2012 at 03:51 PM (#4181229)
On one hand, it certainly is unfair to punish the current players and staff for the trangressions of people ten years ago.

It wouldn't be punishment; it'd be deliverance.

There's nothing about Penn State football they should be proud of; indeed the notion of expressing pride through effort in such a profoundly sick institution borders on grotesque.
   108. SoSH U at work Posted: July 12, 2012 at 03:59 PM (#4181232)
On one hand, it certainly is unfair to punish the current players and staff for the trangressions of people ten years ago.


Let the players leave for and play immediately at any other institution. For those who want to stay, continue to honor their scholarships.

Any staff member hired after a certain date must be paid his full salary or is free to leave for another coaching position. Any holdovers from the Paterno era can find work elsewhere, but otherwise screw em.

   109. Eddo Posted: July 12, 2012 at 04:01 PM (#4181235)
On one hand, it certainly is unfair to punish the current players and staff for the trangressions of people ten years ago.


It wouldn't be punishment; it'd be deliverance.

There's nothing about Penn State football they should be proud of; indeed the notion of expressing pride through effort in such a profoundly sick institution borders on grotesque.

That seems like a twisting of words.

I never said current Penn State students and staff should be proud of "Penn State football", just that they'd be taking a punishment for things that happened well before they were affiliated with the school. (This primarily applies to the players.)

At least, the NCAA should waive the one-year gap for transfer students, so that the Penn State players can go elsewhere.

EDIT: Coke to SoSH.

EDIT II: And SoSH/SBB, I would hope from the rest of my posts, you could tell I fall on the "suspend the program" side of the line. If not, I should have been more clear.
   110. SoSH U at work Posted: July 12, 2012 at 04:08 PM (#4181239)
EDIT II: And SoSH/SBB, I would hope from the rest of my posts, you could tell I fall on the "suspend the program" side of the line. If not, I should have been more clear.


I couldn't even remember where the comment came from, honestly. I was just noting that it is possible to punish the program while limiting/avoiding any collateral damage to those who weren't involved.

   111. Srul Itza Posted: July 12, 2012 at 05:06 PM (#4181276)
Then tear down the stadium and salt the ground.
   112. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 05:24 PM (#4181294)
Then tear down the stadium and salt the ground.


Sounds good to me.
   113. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 07:11 PM (#4181344)
Posnanski, who freakin' moved to State College, never heard a whit of this? Some journalist.


Yes, this was the point made by Jason Whitlock early on, and I agree with it. I don't care what you call Paterno -- "journalist," "not a journalist," "writer," "columnist," whatever. The fact is that he moved down there to write a book on Paterno and yet apparently was unaware that there was a Worst Kept Secret there that was about to cause and was causing Paterno's world to crumble all around him.

Probably 99% of us here have no journalism experience and are not vaunted "journalists," and yet I would lay major odds that every one of us could have uncovered this story. There is nothing Magical about being a journalist. It's just asking questions, and not being blinded by the Greatness of a glorified gym teacher and thus fooled when people close to said gym teacher are shoveling you a load of self-interest-based crap despite what your outside research is uncovering.

Posnanski lost his way because he had, for all intents and purposes, reduced himself to a child who couldn't see that this was the real world he was dealing with, and not some Disneyesque fairy tale. It wasn't because he wasn't a "journalist" by whatever specialized definition of that term people want to employ.
   114. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 07:15 PM (#4181346)
Robinred:

So, Posnanski is IMO in many respects EXACTLY the wrong guy to be in this situation he was in at Penn State, and, predictably (and unfortunately), he blew it.


Actually, I think he was exactly the RIGHT guy to be down there. Because through his missteps and child-like misguided hero worship, he showed exactly why this madness happened in the first place: good people looked the other way, some of them because they bizarrely thought that other interests were more important, others because they got swept up in a cult.
   115. PreservedFish Posted: July 12, 2012 at 07:28 PM (#4181350)
Probably 99% of us here have no journalism experience and are not vaunted "journalists," and yet I would lay major odds that every one of us could have uncovered this story.


You have no idea what you're talking about here, do you?
   116. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 07:36 PM (#4181352)
While acknowledging that Posnanski is a columnist and not an investigative journalist, wasn't he at PSU doing research rather than just penning columns for SI on how green the practice fields' grass was?


As I understand it, yes. There aren't a whole lot of reasons to move down there unless you plan to basically write and research full time. If it's just quotes you're looking for, you can interview people on the phone, or fly down there for a couple weeks.

He moved there for an extended period, as I understand it.
   117. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 07:39 PM (#4181355)
You have no idea what you're talking about here, do you?


http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2011/03/jerry_sandusky_former_penn_sta.html
   118. Benji Gil Gamesh Rises Posted: July 12, 2012 at 07:47 PM (#4181360)
Posnanski lost his way because he had, for all intents and purposes, reduced himself to a child who couldn't see that this was the real world he was dealing with, and not some Disneyesque fairy tale. It wasn't because he wasn't a "journalist" by whatever specialized definition of that term people want to employ.
Wow, it's amazing how you know all this for a fact.

Rich with irony when you're in the midst of trashing a guy for assuming he knew more than he actually did.
   119. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 07:51 PM (#4181363)
Rich with irony when you're in the midst of trashing a guy for assuming he knew more than he actually did.


And I'm saying if he didn't know anything, it was because he had blinders on. And actually, by the time the grand jury report rolled around, I assume he knew what was in the grand jury report, because he said he had read it, before lying about what it said.
   120. Srul Itza Posted: July 12, 2012 at 07:52 PM (#4181364)
apparently was unaware that there was a Worst Kept Secret there that was about to cause and was causing Paterno's world to crumble all around him.


If this was the worst kept secret, how come nobody knew about it until the Grand Jury investigation? Was Posnanski the first journalist permitted onto the Penn State campus in the last two decades?

   121. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 07:53 PM (#4181366)
If this was the worst kept secret, how come nobody knew about it until the Grand Jury investigation?


Your premise is wrong. People did know about it before then.
   122. Benji Gil Gamesh Rises Posted: July 12, 2012 at 07:56 PM (#4181369)
And I'm saying if he didn't know anything, it was because he had blinders on. And actually, by the time the grand jury report rolled around, I assume he knew what was in the grand jury report, because he said he had read it, before lying about what it said.
I know what you're saying, and you're mistaking your best guess (or your opinion) for set-in-stone fact.

And I've said this to you before and I'll repeat it here because it's a manifestation of that same tendency of yours: you accuse other people of lying far, far too often.
   123. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 07:58 PM (#4181370)
And I've said this to you before and I'll repeat it here because it's a manifestation of that same tendency of yours: you accuse other people of lying far, far too often.


Posnanski lied, as I detailed both here and in two private emails to him at the time.
   124. PreservedFish Posted: July 12, 2012 at 08:06 PM (#4181373)
I bet he didn't even respond to those emails. What's he got to hide?!?!
   125. Ryan Lind Posted: July 12, 2012 at 08:17 PM (#4181379)
If Posnanski were writing a book about Sandusky, Ray would probably have a point...but ... he wasn't?
   126. Srul Itza Posted: July 12, 2012 at 08:50 PM (#4181396)
Your premise is wrong. People did know about it before then.


Other than the victims, Sandusky, and the people covering it up, who? You? The Reporters and Editors at the Philadelphia Enquirer? Sports Illustrated? Who?

This was big news because it was a big shock to everyone outside that circle, except apparently you. So when did you report it to the police?
   127. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 08:55 PM (#4181400)
Srul, I'm not going to engage you any longer on this, as I've grown tired of you trolling me on this site. Go get laid or something. Surely you can find other hobbies. Or see a shrink for your bizarre sickness.
   128. Depressoteric Posted: July 12, 2012 at 08:57 PM (#4181402)
I'm trying hard to see what's wrong with any of Ray's points in this thread, and I'm failing.

Frankly, he's been right as rain about this whole thing from the beginning.

EDIT: And no, I don't see anything wrong with the level of "judgmentalism" (or whatever you want to call it) he's bringing to bear on Posnanski on this matter. But then again I suppose I wouldn't.
   129. Mike Webber Posted: July 12, 2012 at 09:18 PM (#4181413)
If this was the worst kept secret, how come nobody knew about it until the Grand Jury investigation? Was Posnanski the first journalist permitted onto the Penn State campus in the last two decades?


When I was a student a KSU, and Lonnie Kreuger was sleeping with a cheerleader, it wasn't a secret.
When I lived in KC and Marty Schotenheimer was screwing a waitress it was widely known.

But I guess at State College they can keep a secret a lot better than the people around here who boo those bastard Yankees for fun...
   130. Gaelan Posted: July 12, 2012 at 09:18 PM (#4181414)
Once again the people who insist on defending Posnanski show they have neither shame nor honour. Posnanski provided moral cover for reprehensible human beings. Denying this is itself reprehensible.

Suspending the football program is literally the least they can do.
   131. Srul Itza Posted: July 12, 2012 at 09:39 PM (#4181422)
When I was a student a KSU, and Lonnie Kreuger was sleeping with a cheerleader, it wasn't a secret.
When I lived in KC and Marty Schotenheimer was screwing a waitress it was widely known.


Were they under-aged? Was it a crime?
   132. Mike Webber Posted: July 12, 2012 at 09:42 PM (#4181423)
Were they under-aged? Was it a crime?


No, which makes it less interesting, thus not as interesting to gossip about.
   133. Srul Itza Posted: July 12, 2012 at 09:42 PM (#4181424)
Ray the troll, complains about being trolled. Hilarious.

And, of course, he refuses to answer the question.

The fact remains that if, as Ray and Mike insist, everyone knew that Sandusky was raping children because it was the worst kept secret, then there are a whole lot of people who should be investigated, and every newspaper and television station in the State of Pennsylvania should voluntarily shut down for a week in shame for being part of the cover-up.

   134. Srul Itza Posted: July 12, 2012 at 09:44 PM (#4181426)
No, which makes it less interesting, thus not as interesting to gossip about.


And also makes it less vital to keep it from being known, since nobody will go to jail for a decade if it comes out.
   135. Mike Webber Posted: July 12, 2012 at 09:51 PM (#4181432)
The fact remains that if, as Ray and Mike insist, everyone knew that Sandusky was raping children because it was the worst kept secret, then there are a whole lot of people who should be investigated,


Agreed,

and every newspaper and television station in the State of Pennsylvania should voluntarily shut down for a week in shame for being part of the cover-up.


but this part is as dumb as Robbie Cano.
   136. Srul Itza Posted: July 12, 2012 at 10:11 PM (#4181445)

but this part is as dumb as Robbie Cano.


Why? Everyone means everyone. If knowledge was that widespread, then the media was part of the cover-up.

In the great scheme of things, sins don't get much blacker than child rape. If it was such open knowledge, dozens of reporters and every media outlet had to know. They all kept quiet, right?
   137. PreservedFish Posted: July 12, 2012 at 10:11 PM (#4181446)
Suspending the football program is literally the least they can do.


Oh Gaelan.

I was looking for you on the politics thread yesterday. There was a heated discussion on inalienable rights.
   138. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 10:16 PM (#4181450)
Everyone means everyone.


Everyone is your word. I said people.
   139. Srul Itza Posted: July 12, 2012 at 10:34 PM (#4181472)
And I asked, what people? I mean aside from the victims, Sandusky, and the Penn State hierarchy?


You seem to be taking the position that Posnanski absolutely should have come across this information on Sandusky, because so many people knew that it was, and i quote you the "Worst Kept Secret". But if Posnanski should have come across, so should a hell of a lot of other people, particularly, ones close to the program.

So did McQueary, insider and son of an insider, know before he walked into that shower room? If so, he should not have been surprised, and should have had no reason to report it.


Then again, you said you would not engage any more. If I can't rely on Ray to be true to himself, I may lose faith in all of the verities and certainties.

   140. Lassus Posted: July 12, 2012 at 10:57 PM (#4181487)
I admit I have always been doubtful of "worst-kept-secrets" and things "everybody knows".
   141. PreservedFish Posted: July 12, 2012 at 11:22 PM (#4181490)
I admit I have always been doubtful of "worst-kept-secrets" and things "everybody knows".


Usually there's a strong incentive for people to say, after the reveal, that they always knew. Because they don't want to look like they were ever out of the loop. At least when the "worst kept secret" is something like "Anderson Cooper is gay." But not in this case.
   142. Pasta-diving Jeter (jmac66) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 11:24 PM (#4181492)
wait--Anderson Cooper is gay?!!! Next you'll be saying the same thing about Paul Lynde..
   143. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 11:42 PM (#4181501)
Usually there's a strong incentive for people to say, after the reveal, that they always knew.


This perhaps has some merit. And one of my sources is an article I read some months back (I can't find it now) about how regular townspeople such as a hair dressed claimed that she and others knew. So perhaps stories like that are far fetched. But Sandusky's abuse was so widespread and continued unfettered for so many years that there were scores of people (not "everyone") with knowledge or potentially with knowledge at least by the time the March 2011 story hit the papers that the grand jury was investigating, including these parties:

* The victims
* The victims' families
* The victims' familes' friends
* Janitors in the Lasch Building who discussed at least one incident one of them had seen
* The janitors' families
* The janitors' friends
* Potentially people at the Second Mile who were on the ground with Sandusky
* The grand jury members
* The grand jury members' families
* The grand jury members' friends
* People in the football program
* Coaches around the league (rumored)
* Mike McQueary
* Mike McQueary's family (we know his father knew)
* Mike McQueary's friends
* People who wrote on the Black Shoe blog a year earlier that - I quote - "an extinction level event" was about to hit the Penn State football program.

Etc etc etc. I don't know why people here push back so hard on a pretty non-controversial statement, the statement that if Posnanski was interested in actually doing some research on the entirety of Joe Paterno, he would have run across this pretty quickly.

But we know he wasn't interested, because even afer the Grand Jury report came out, he spewed vile nonsense that included lying about what the report said. "We don't know what Joe knew," Posnanski wrote. But we did know the bare minimum of what "Joe" knew -- according to "Joe's" own testimony provided under oath. And that alone, coupled with the fact that state authorities were never informed, was enough to condemn Paterno. So Posnanski is a liar, for starters.
   144. Mayor Blomberg Posted: July 12, 2012 at 11:51 PM (#4181508)
Potentially people at the Second Mile who were on the ground with Sandusky

heh.

Sorry; I'll grow up.
   145. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 12, 2012 at 11:55 PM (#4181509)
And add to my list other players, PSU personnel, local high school personnel, or anyone else, really, who saw Sandusky prancing around with kids for a decade or more. The high school officials who saw Sandusky "wrestling" with kids at various points, for example. At some point the Second Mile cover has to look suspicious, and when Sandusky has these kids in the freaking Lasch Building showers after hours and such, well, there's only so much of that that can occur over a 10 or 15 or 20 year period before lots of people are likely to become privy to the idea that something is rotten. At least enough people that Posnanski could have uncovered it.

But if you find this notion so outrageous, then don't subscribe to it. Whatever. Just in my list above there were plenty of tangible people (janitors and such) who we know knew. And the story was more than "in the air" at least by March 2011 when that news story came out about a grand jury having been convened. If Posnanski couldn't uncover this, then I don't know what, exactly. DID he know about the March 2011 news story? How could he not have, if he was down there "researching"? DID he bother to even TRY to investigate? He was down there on a singular mission to write a book about Paterno.
   146. PreservedFish Posted: July 12, 2012 at 11:59 PM (#4181514)
Etc etc etc. I don't know why people here push back so hard on a pretty non-controversial statement, the statement that if Posnanski was interested in actually doing some research on the entirety of Joe Paterno, he would have run across this pretty quickly.


I'm not accepting that this is non-controversial. And, to be clear, I know virtually nothing about this story. The only thing I know about it is that you do not know enough to say something like this with any confidence.
   147. Repoz Posted: July 13, 2012 at 12:00 AM (#4181515)
Don't know if this was posted, but here's Posnanski's latest Tweet...

I dedicated myself to write the most honest book I could about Joe Paterno. Everything I have to say about his life is in it.
   148. Busted Flush Posted: July 13, 2012 at 12:22 AM (#4181524)
I'm trying hard to see what's wrong with any of Ray's points in this thread, and I'm failing.

Frankly, he's been right as rain about this whole thing from the beginning.

EDIT: And no, I don't see anything wrong with the level of "judgmentalism" (or whatever you want to call it) he's bringing to bear on Posnanski on this matter. But then again I suppose I wouldn't.


I couldn't agree more. .
   149. booond Posted: July 13, 2012 at 01:21 AM (#4181543)
I admit I have always been doubtful of "worst-kept-secrets" and things "everybody knows".


I would say that "everybody knows" is more "No one's shocked." It's not that anyone has evidence but in hindsight they aren't shocked. They can fit the pieces together.
   150. Never Give an Inge (Dave) Posted: July 13, 2012 at 01:52 AM (#4181548)

I'm trying hard to see what's wrong with any of Ray's points in this thread, and I'm failing.

Well, I can see a few things:

Probably 99% of us here have no journalism experience and are not vaunted "journalists," and yet I would lay major odds that every one of us could have uncovered this story. There is nothing Magical about being a journalist. It's just asking questions, and not being blinded by the Greatness of a glorified gym teacher and thus fooled when people close to said gym teacher are shoveling you a load of self-interest-based crap despite what your outside research is uncovering.

There is nothing "magical" about being a journalist, just like there is nothing magical about most jobs. But being a good investigative reporter is not easy, it requires hard work and cultivation of sources, and certain people are naturally better at that than others. It's not rocket science, but it requires more than just showing up and asking the right questions.

I also think the idea that, in 2010, this was an open secret that you had to be willfully blind not to see, overstates the case. For starters, in 2010, Sandusky had been retired for 11 years. Certainly if you're researching Joe Paterno's entire career, the topic of Sandusky will come up, but I could understand him not being a focus of your research at this point. I could also see people who suspected the abuse not mentioning it to Poz because Paterno wasn't the abuser. Even if the Sandusky abuse was an open secret, Paterno's knowledge / involvement in the case was wasn't.

   151. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: July 13, 2012 at 03:42 AM (#4181563)
Everyone means everyone.

Everyone is your word. I said people.


Football programs are people, my friends.
   152. Benji Gil Gamesh Rises Posted: July 13, 2012 at 07:12 AM (#4181577)
The only thing I know about it is that you do not know enough to say something like this with any confidence.
And that false certainty is what is so maddening. Personally, I'm not even saying that Posnanski had no chance of uncovering this, or that it isn't possible that the esteem in which he held Paterno may have blinded him, or that there's not a possibility that he did hear a whiff of some of this stuff and chose to ignore it. But the ridiculous declarative statements that these things are incontrovertible facts and that therefore Posnanski is worthy of everlasting scorn are repellent.
   153. bobm Posted: July 13, 2012 at 07:34 AM (#4181581)
[117] 
You have no idea what you're talking about here, do you?


http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2011/03/jerry_sandusky_former_penn_sta.html


From the above link:

In his 2000 autobiography, “Touched: The Jerry Sandusky Story,”


Well, that's ironic.
   154. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 13, 2012 at 07:45 AM (#4181585)
But the ridiculous declarative statements that these things are incontrovertible facts and that therefore Posnanski is worthy of everlasting scorn are repellent.


I haven't gone back to look how I phrased my comments, but I'm happy to confine my scorn for Posnanski to what he wrote, including the lies he told. And since he hasn't defended his comments or walked them back since, that scorn holds.
   155. Rants Mulliniks Posted: July 13, 2012 at 07:59 AM (#4181590)
I just don't understand how Pos can still be on the fence (or feel anything less than utter contempt for Paterno) when he has kids of his own. I don't have kids, but I have to think if I ever witnessed someone molesting a child I'd be hard pressed not to beat them within an inch of their life. I won't be reading the book because I don't give two shits about college football, but it will be interesting to see how Poz addresses it.
   156. Eddo Posted: July 13, 2012 at 10:04 AM (#4181666)
I haven't gone back to look how I phrased my comments, but I'm happy to confine my scorn for Posnanski to what he wrote, including the lies he told. And since he hasn't defended his comments or walked them back since, that scorn holds.

I guess I'm having trouble seeing all the "lies he told". I read your emails to him, which you posted last fall, and while you're absolutely right he made claims that contradict the grand jury testimony, I think it's far more likely he either didn't fully read the grand jury report or read a condensed version than he read it, fully comprehended it, then decided to lie about Paterno's knowledge.

Not that I want to defend Posnanski; he absolutely should have done a better job of understanding the situation before making comments about Paterno and defending him. Due to this, I have read everything Posnanski has written through a different filter, and have become less of a fan, certainly.

I just agree that the extreme judgement and bandying-about of the word "liar" is a bit over-the-top.
   157. Eddo Posted: July 13, 2012 at 10:07 AM (#4181669)
I just don't understand how Pos can still be on the fence (or feel anything less than utter contempt for Paterno) when he has kids of his own. I don't have kids, but I have to think if I ever witnessed someone molesting a child I'd be hard pressed not to beat them within an inch of their life. I won't be reading the book because I don't give two shits about college football, but it will be interesting to see how Poz addresses it.

This, too. It is unbelievable that Posnanski has still not seen through the apparent Paterno facade.
   158. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 13, 2012 at 10:27 AM (#4181699)
If this was the worst kept secret, how come nobody knew about it until the Grand Jury investigation?


But people did in fact know before the GJ investigation, which is what makes this story so much worse.

The fact remains that if, as Ray and Mike insist, everyone knew that Sandusky was raping children because it was the worst kept secret, then there are a whole lot of people who should be investigated


and there are, in act some are being charged for perjury,and its widely believed that more charges are on the way.
   159. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 13, 2012 at 10:31 AM (#4181705)
This, too. It is unbelievable that Posnanski has still not seen through the apparent Paterno facade.


Don't know if he has or hasn't, - he obviously had not as of January...

   160. Rickey! On a blog from 1998. With the candlestick. Posted: July 13, 2012 at 10:38 AM (#4181713)
Football programs are people, my friends.


While it's not worth drudging through another Pos/Paterno/Sandusky thread, this was entertaining.
   161. Yeaarrgghhhh Posted: July 13, 2012 at 10:48 AM (#4181726)
I'm surprised that people are arguing that it would be unfair to punish the Penn State football program because Paterno is no longer coach. Our criminal justice system serves three purposes: punishing the offender (aka retribution), preventing the offender from committing another crime by keeping him in jail for some period of time, and deterring others from committing a similar crime by demonstrating that the state will punish them. Deterrence is arguably the most important aspect of the system, and suspending the Penn State football program for 5 or 10 years could have a major impact on other schools. It won't punish Paterno or prevent him from engaging in another cover up, but it might make every other school think twice about sweeping criminal behavior under the rug.
   162. Mayor Blomberg Posted: July 13, 2012 at 11:33 AM (#4181760)
Could be wrong, but I'm fairly sure that other programs have been punished after the transgressing coach has moved on. As they should. they're acting as agents of the program.
   163. SandyRiver Posted: July 13, 2012 at 11:56 AM (#4181789)
I think Ray's definition of liar is more broad than mine (though that might mean mine is too narrow.) IMO, lying requires that one knows fully that his/her statement is untrue, and makes the statement with a clear intent to deceive. That lets out gross hyperbole, like some fishing stories, where the intent is to entertain and one doesn't expect to be taken seriously. Perhaps Pos only skimmed the Grand Jury notes, or was expressing a feeling that Paterno knew a lot more than a dying mid-80s man recalled for the GJ. Perhaps Pos knew full well that his statement was untrue and was indeed trying to deceive. Presenting either of these "perhapses" as ironclad fact seems a bit presumptuous to me. Maybe Pos' book and possible late revisions, assuming it gets released, can clue us in.

And while we're handing out well-deserved opprobrium, I'll offer I Corinthians 10:12, one of my favorite verses, as a lesson for the Posnanskis, Paternos, and SandyRivers of the world: "Wherefore, let him that thinketh he standeth take heed, lest he fall."
   164. Zach Posted: July 13, 2012 at 02:05 PM (#4181873)
Probably 99% of us here have no journalism experience and are not vaunted "journalists," and yet I would lay major odds that every one of us could have uncovered this story. There is nothing Magical about being a journalist. It's just asking questions, and not being blinded by the Greatness of a glorified gym teacher and thus fooled when people close to said gym teacher are shoveling you a load of self-interest-based crap despite what your outside research is uncovering.

I think you have a very romantic idea of how much background research people do when there's zero expectation that it will pay off. Do you normally interview the families of dead janitors who worked at a stadium ten years ago? How about single mothers who made unofficial complaints about former assistant coaches and never followed up through official channels?

Information like this ends up coming to light because of lawsuits, criminal prosecutions, or motivated leakers. If Mike McQueary had gotten fired and wanted to embarrass the program, or if he got religion and wanted to clear his conscience, he could have leaked the story to a reporter. If one of the administrators had gotten passed over for a promotion and wanted to get rid of a rival, same thing. If someone had gotten outraged at the coverup and leaked some details in order to make PSU do the right thing, a reporter would have something to work with. If one of the mothers had decided not to be quiet...
   165. Srul Itza Posted: July 13, 2012 at 02:07 PM (#4181877)
I also think the idea that, in 2010, this was an open secret that you had to be willfully blind not to see, overstates the case.


Bingo. Then again, this is Ray's MO -- Make vastly overreaching, insupportable statements, then refuse to back away even one inch, no matter how many people show how outlandish his original comment was.
   166. Avoid running at all times.-S. Paige Posted: July 13, 2012 at 05:07 PM (#4181959)
Jason Whitlock taking more swipes at Posnanski:

Posnanski has been in State College for nearly two years chronicling Paterno’s march toward being the winningest coach in college football history. Ganim and others were writing stories about the grand-jury investigation that would soon engulf Sandusky, Paterno and Penn State football.

Posnanski never saw the storm coming. Rather than embrace having a front-row seat to write about one of the most horrific and important stories in the history of sports, Posnanski has thrown an eight-month tantrum about how “one hazy moment” doesn’t define St. Joe Paterno and how the media are wrong for vilifying a man who did so many great things.

Posnanski has bunkered down and disappeared into relative seclusion like writing the truth about Paterno is the most difficult and treacherous task a journalist has ever undertaken. Men are the worst jock-sniffers
   167. Barry`s_Lazy_Boy Posted: July 13, 2012 at 05:43 PM (#4181981)
Could be wrong, but I'm fairly sure that other programs have been punished after the transgressing coach has moved on. As they should. they're acting as agents of the program.

Many (most?) punishments occur after the offending coaches/players have moved on. USC got dinged for stuff that happened when Reggie Bush and Carroll were there. They are currently cashing NFL paychecks while USC serves probation. Tressel got the axe at OSU but the team still suffers. Baylor basketball was under major punishment despite the coach being fired. The list goes on and on and on. To argue this in the PSU situation is a red herring.

   168. The District Attorney Posted: July 13, 2012 at 08:40 PM (#4182090)
Posnanski has bunkered down and disappeared into relative seclusion like writing the truth about Paterno is the most difficult and treacherous task a journalist has ever undertaken.
I don't think this is fair. First off, Whitlock contradicts himself in consecutive sentences -- it's "one of the most horrific and important stories in the history of sports", but it's not a "difficult and treacherous task" to write about it? Of course it's not literally the most difficult and treacherous task EVER, but that's a silly point. Naturally, Whitlock was correct the first time. This story is important.

In that context, Poz has made it clear that he's not going to casually chat about the subject and that his book will be his complete statement on the matter. Maybe that means he regrets the content of what he said to the PSU class and doesn't want to make that mistake again. (He certainly has not "thrown an eight-month tantrum"!) At the opposite extreme, maybe Poz has been silent because he knows no one is going to want to hear the truth about his impending "JoePa did a lot of great stuff, and aren't we all human?" book. We'll know soon... in any event, I don't think it's unreasonable for Poz to request that we let him explain himself in full as opposed to in 140-character bursts.
   169. Everybody Loves Tyrus Raymond Posted: July 13, 2012 at 10:00 PM (#4182183)
I don't think this is fair. First off, Whitlock contradicts himself in consecutive sentences -- it's "one of the most horrific and important stories in the history of sports", but it's not a "difficult and treacherous task" to write about it? Of course it's not literally the most difficult and treacherous task EVER, but that's a silly point. Naturally, Whitlock was correct the first time. This story is important.


I don't see the contradiction. Yes, the story is very important. But it doesn't seem all that difficult to get it right - and Poz, to this point, still seems oddly protective of JoePa. Maybe the book will surprise me, but I fear it's going to be soft on Paterno - and not because there are valid reasons, but rather because Poz is a nice guy and has a blind spot for his hero. If so, Poz's reputation as a journalist is never going to fully recover.
   170. The District Attorney Posted: July 13, 2012 at 10:21 PM (#4182221)
I don't see the contradiction. Yes, the story is very important. But it doesn't seem all that difficult to get it right
Well, it's true that you don't need hundreds of pages of detail in order to come to the conclusion that Paterno has significant moral culpability here. But presumably, Poz is going to provide those hundreds of pages of detail, about this story that involves so many figures (school administrators, government officials, victims, parents, the entire PSU community, etc.); spanned over decades; and is horrific. And, since it is such an important story, he'll want to make even more sure than usual that everything in it is indisputably correct. So, all that is "difficult and treacherous".
   171. jwb Posted: July 14, 2012 at 12:10 AM (#4182269)
The NCAA absolutely does have the right to step in:

The Freeh Report showed evidence of a clear violation of the Clery Act, which mandates a school report crimes on campus to the federal government. That could cost Penn State tens of thousands of dollars in fines. And then there's the possibility of NCAA violations, specifically articles 2.4 and 10.1 of the NCAA constitution, which insist on proper ethical behavior on the part of coaches and school officials: "These values should be manifest not only in athletics participation, but also in the broad spectrum of activities affecting the athletics program."

http://sports.yahoo.com/news/ncaaf--penn-state-civil-suits-sandusky-victims-cost-joe-paterno-freeh-report.html
   172. Ryan Lind Posted: July 14, 2012 at 01:32 AM (#4182290)
New to this story, I am outraged that Paterno was allowed to rape young boys and that Posnanski covered it up.
   173. A big pile of nonsense (gef the talking mongoose) Posted: July 14, 2012 at 02:05 AM (#4182294)
To say nothing of Chris Truby's & Albert Belle's role in the matter.

And Mike Crudale's.
   174. Howie Menckel Posted: July 14, 2012 at 09:00 AM (#4182335)

"The best approach I've seen to diffusing the boo-birds came from Darryl Strawberry. It was Darryl's first visit back to Shea Stadium as a Dodger, and the fans (I among them) were booing mercilessly.

During the middle innings, the boos and "Daaa-ryyyyllll" chants were raining down on him in waves. In response, Darryl turns to the fans along the rightfield line, and starts waving his arms in time with the chants--like a maestro conducting an orchestra. Thousands of people laugh at the same time, Darryl laughs, and from that point on the boos were delivered with a wink and a nod--it was like booing a pro wrestling heel."
.......

I used to go to Wrigley every summer to see the Mets play there, and Straw had a different sort of fun with Cubs fans.
I always sat in the RF bleachers (because "Left Field Sucks"), and the fans would do the "Daaa-ryyyyllll" chant. He would cup his hand to his ear as he looked back, and look quizzical. No matter how loud they got, he would pretend to be listening but not be able to make out what they were saying. The fans properly perceived this as hilarious.

   175. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 16, 2012 at 12:26 PM (#4183831)
Posnanski has bunkered down and disappeared into relative seclusion like writing the truth about Paterno is the most difficult and treacherous task a journalist has ever undertaken.


I don't think this is fair. First off, Whitlock contradicts himself in consecutive sentences -- it's "one of the most horrific and important stories in the history of sports", but it's not a "difficult and treacherous task" to write about it?


Of course, Whitlock again sums Posnanski's actions here up perfectly. And I'm not seeing the contradiction. The fact that it's one of the most horrific and important stories in the history of sports -- and actually its scope is much wider than that -- should make it easy to write about where mistakes were made and who was at fault. It's "difficult and trecherous" to write that Paterno et al deserve scorn for the way they handled this? Why?

In that context, Poz has made it clear that he's not going to casually chat about the subject and that his book will be his complete statement on the matter. Maybe that means he regrets the content of what he said to the PSU class and doesn't want to make that mistake again. (He certainly has not "thrown an eight-month tantrum"!)


He certainly has. He's a writer. His job is to write and offer his opinions. As he was doing initially, until it was pointed out to him how contemptible his opinions were, and then instead of either defending them or walking them back, he went underground.

At the opposite extreme, maybe Poz has been silent because he knows no one is going to want to hear the truth about his impending "JoePa did a lot of great stuff, and aren't we all human?" book. We'll know soon... in any event, I don't think it's unreasonable for Poz to request that we let him explain himself in full as opposed to in 140-character bursts.


Of course, columns are not 140-charater bursts. He has had plenty of opportunity to explain himself. He chose not to.
   176. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 16, 2012 at 12:32 PM (#4183837)
New to this story, I am outraged that Paterno was allowed to rape young boys and that Posnanski covered it up.


Lame troll attempt.
   177. Ryan Lind Posted: July 16, 2012 at 12:35 PM (#4183839)
It's "difficult and trecherous" to write that Paterno et al deserve scorn for the way they handled this? Why?


Because he and his family would receive death threats and worse from the Paterno-worshippers in the state. Did you not see the riots that took place after St. Paterno was fired? Have you not been following this?

But sure, it's easy. Everything is easy in Ray's black and white candyland.
   178. Ryan Lind Posted: July 16, 2012 at 12:37 PM (#4183846)
Lame troll attempt.


Making fun of you does not constitute trolling.
   179. PreservedFish Posted: July 16, 2012 at 12:40 PM (#4183855)
I don't think it's tough to criticize Paterno's actions, but it would be difficult to know how to adjust what was previously conceived as an inspirational Father's Day type of biography. You can't just tack on an extra chapter of "this one time he did something evil." Not that this is a unique challenge for Poz, but it still isn't easy.
   180. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: July 16, 2012 at 01:18 PM (#4183917)
I haven't followed this very closely but I have to admit I'm puzzled by the degree to which Poz is being criticized. It seems that his statements were "let's wait for the full story to come out" which doesn't seem all that controversial but he's getting roasted. It may have been more than that but that seems to be the case.

As for the book, I don't see how Poz writes this book successfully. His default position generally is to see the best in people and that's the wrong approach for this book. Pushing the publication date up isn't going to improve things. Either Poz pushes out a hatchet job of Paterno (not undeserved of course) that doesn't give a full story or he writes something that is more nuanced and probably more interesting, but will get destroyed by the public. Simply put, I think Poz is 100% the wrong type of writer for this book.
   181. Johnny Sycophant-Laden Fora Posted: July 16, 2012 at 02:01 PM (#4183980)
It seems that his statements were "let's wait for the full story to come out" which doesn't seem all that controversial but he's getting roasted. It may have been more than that


It was.
   182. 'zop sympathizes with the wrong ####### people Posted: July 16, 2012 at 02:10 PM (#4183994)
I haven't followed this very closely but I have to admit I'm puzzled by the degree to which Poz is being criticized. It seems that his statements were "let's wait for the full story to come out" which doesn't seem all that controversial but he's getting roasted. It may have been more than that but that seems to be the case.


"I don't know what I'm talking about, so let me assert a fact that supports my argument, but is completely incorrect."
   183. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: July 16, 2012 at 02:24 PM (#4184012)
You're right, I don't know what I'm talking about. A little Cliff's Notes version of why Poz is awful would be helpful.
   184. The District Attorney Posted: July 16, 2012 at 02:38 PM (#4184033)
You're right, I don't know what I'm talking about.
You're being sarcastic, but the thing is that you don't.

A little Cliff's Notes version of why Poz is awful would be helpful.
No one is saying "Poz is awful." Don't be a baby.

Here are his remarks that go beyond "let's wait for the full story to come out". (I suppose we could throw this in there as well.)
   185. Avoid running at all times.-S. Paige Posted: July 16, 2012 at 02:41 PM (#4184040)
Jose, this is from Jeff Pearlman's latest:

One of the things that really irks me, RE: Posnanski and Paterno, is that, late last year, after the initial Sandusky news hit, the author addressed a class at Penn State titled, “Joe Paterno: Communications and the Media.” As an employee of Sports Illustrated at the time, defending Paterno before a room of students was, to be polite, unprofessional (When I was coming up at SI, the editors would have considered firing a writer for such an action). According to a kid who Tweeted during the session, Posnanski uttered the following:

“If this happened at the University of Miami, no matter how bad it was, it wouldn’t have elevated to this level.”
“I think [Paterno] is a scapegoat. I definitely think that…I think he tried to do the right thing, and the right thing didn’t happen.”
“The only thing people remember about Woody Hayes is that he hit a player. I don’t want that to happen to Joe. He didn’t hit a player.”
“It’s already shameful. It’ll be ten times more shameful to think that they fired him with a personal messenger sent to his home.”
(On reporters who have covered the story well) “There are not many.”
“I’ve never seen anything handled worse. Maybe how New Orleans, post-Katrina….Paterno was always dangled by this university.”
“A lot of people came here to bury Joe. As a writer, I’m mad with that, as someone who’s come to know the Paternos, I’m heartbroken.”
“The rush to judgment here has been extraordinarily. The lesson to learn might be that we screwed this thing up.”

Those words might come to haunt Posnanski.


Poz wasn't just in wait and see mode. He had taken a clear position for Paterno.
   186. Jose Can Still Seabiscuit Posted: July 16, 2012 at 02:56 PM (#4184064)
184/185 - Thanks, that's what I was looking for. I didn't follow the story closely when things got rolling because it seemed like a fairly standard if truly awful abuse of power that is all too common. The Poz stuff surprised me and I didn't get the backlash (probably a better word than my phrasing "Poz is awful" from above) against Poz.
   187. Ray (RDP) Posted: July 16, 2012 at 03:37 PM (#4184114)
I haven't followed this very closely but I have to admit I'm puzzled by the degree to which Poz is being criticized. It seems that his statements were "let's wait for the full story to come out"


No.

But I agree with you on one point: You haven't followed this very closely. Or very at all. So, basically, you're puzzled by the reaction to X when you have no idea what X is and think X was Y?
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