Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Greggggg Easterbrook Needs To Be Put In A Padded Room

We heard you the first time, Greggggggg.

Einstein said the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. If that is the standard, then Greggg Easterbrook is the posterboy for insanity.

A lot of things have transpired since the middle of September. (I’m not going to link to all of these stories because I’m lazy) The Mets blew an insurmountable NL East lead, the Sox won the World Series, A-Rod left and came back for the most money ever and then had the worst sports interview in television history on 60 Minutes, the Mitchell Report came out and made some news, the college football season got a little nutty and every favorite lost right when they could’ve won, Marion Jones had some trouble with lying, Mike Vick was sentenced, the Heisman sucked and went to the wrong guy, Brett Favre came back from the dead, Shaun Alexander killed my fantasy team and Tom Brady & Randy Moss had the greatest seasons at their respective positions ever. There are a ton of stories that I can’t even remember that have at one point or another grabbed the spotlight and made us forget about stories past. Hell, you probably completely forgot that Mike Vick was in prison presently until I reminded you and that was the biggest deal ever at the time. Well, there is one guy who has not let the hundreds of important sports stories between mid-September and today distract him from the story of utmost importance: that man is Greggggg Easterbrook; and his story is STILL THE FUCKING PATRIOTS AND VIDEOTAPING FIASCO!. Yes, for the 100th consecutive week, Gregggggg Easterbrook is ripping the Pats for videotaping the Jets and is still banging the drum of "asterisks" and taint and God knows what else. And yes, it's still falling on deaf ears.

When I first read this week's TMQ , I couldn’t believe it. I honestly thought I had clicked on a post from September or from when they played the Colts. But nope, it was written today and his arguments haven't changed one bit. The guy is certifiably obsessed with the Pats and this stupid story. I am in no way suggesting that this wasn’t a HUGE story when it came out. It dominated the sports landscape for about a full month. But what relevance does it have today? According Gregggggggg, all the relevance in the world:
No matter how well New England plays Sunday, every victory the team earned this season -- and perhaps victories in previous seasons, too -- is tainted until such time when we learn what was in the material the league destroyed. New England is aware that its season is an asterisk season; owner Robert Kraft has complained the Patriots are now viewed as "tainted," his word. For all we know, the Belichick Files vindicate the Patriots. But until such time when we learn what was in those files, even at 19-0, the New England Patriots should not be considered a great team because we cannot be sure whether these wins were earned or stolen. Nor can we be sure whether New England's three Super Bowl rings were earned or stolen.
......... I.... I.... I am honestly stunned. We don’t know if the Pats’ victories were stolen THIS YEAR? Why? Because they attempted to tape the first half of the first game of the season? After that incident it is likely that they were the most scrutinized team in the history of the sport. There were articles and Outside The Lines stories SOLELY on what the Pats were doing on the sidelines from that point forward. And the NFL hasn't suggested they did anything else wrong. If we worry that the Pats have "stolen" games this year even though nothing was reported after the Jets' games, why aren't we concerned about every other team. It's not as though this is the first time this has happened or the first time that a team was charged with doing something nefarious. His argument here just lacks a foundation of rational thought. It's pure lunacy and it distracts from his other statements, which are also founded in Gregggggg's f'd up homespun wisdom:
Most of the sports media have rolled over and played dead on the New England destroyed-tapes story; The NFL promised to get to the bottom of the Patriots' cheating and reveal the truth to the public; instead, the NFL destroyed the New England documents and refuses to say what they contained. If the documents vindicated New England or the NFL, it would have been strongly in the league's interest to say so. Instead, the NFL has stonewalled us, so what does that make you think? Until we know what was on the videotapes and in the documents the NFL destroyed, there will always be a cloud of suspicion over the Patriots. How much of an advantage did they gain by cheating? Did they really hand over everything to the league? Are they still cheating now? Most important by far, have they cheated in the Super Bowl?
You see, here I can kind of pick up what Gregggggg's puttin down. Now, I COULDN'T disagree more, but I think his skepticism as to the NFL's true motive in putting quickly to bed the Pats video story isn't completely unfounded. But where he loses me is when he starts asking about the advantage the Pats got or whether they are still cheating. If they are still cheating, it is very likely we would know about it. Mere rumor of impropriety would be front page news, so unless I'm missing something very striking here or no one has picked up on it, the Pats haven't done shit since the Jets game other than win every game. But in terms of the advantage to be gained from cheating, you could figure that out even without knowing exactly how they used the information they gathered. It's not that difficult. Use your imagination. But Easterbrook's final shot at the Pats was his finest and most indignant:
And all you sportscasters and sportswriters who will spend this week gushing over the Super Bowl, it would be nice if a few of you mentioned that, a mere four months ago, NFL commissioner Roger Goodell found the Patriots guilty of "a calculated and deliberate attempt to avoid long-standing rules designed to encourage fair play and promote honest competition." Two billion people will watch the Super Bowl; almost all of America's children and teens will watch the Super Bowl. If the bottom line of the event is "It's fine to cheat, you'll get away with it," what message does that send?
Yup Gregggg, the message from the Pats' season is cheaters always win. And the message from Greggggg Easterbrook's coverage of the Pats is that even an old crazy coot who can't let anything go can still make an honest wage in this country through public catharsis.

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