NFL will suspend four players unless they agree to interview about PEDs

The NFL has informed the NFLPA that unless Packers linebackers Clay Matthews and Julius Peppers, Steelers linebacker James Harrison, and free-agent linebacker Mike Neal agree to cooperate with an investigation on performance enhancers, they will suspend them for the first four games of the season.

I love how the NFL has the number four burned into its collective brain. No matter what the transgression, a four-game suspension is always the remedy. Punch the mother of your child and knock her out? That will be four games. Cheat in the AFC Championship Game by using underinflated footballs? That will be four games. Use modern medical science to prepare your body for the hardship of playing in the NFL? That will be four games.

This controversy stems from an Al-Jazeera America (oxymoron much?) produced documentary The Dark Side. The documentary contends that the above four players, along with now-retired quarterback Payton Manning, received shipments of PEDs from pharmaceutical intern Charlie Sly.

The guy’s last name is Sly. If that does not invoke an overall feeling of trust and confidence, I do not know what does.

Payton Manning was already cleared of all wrong doing because his first name is Payton and his last name is Manning. Even in retirement, he’s one of the few NFL players Corporate America loves. He is just not the kind of guy the bad stuff sticks to, just ask the woman he harassed while attending the University of Tennessee.

I think the whole PED controversy is a non-controversy. Of course players in the NFL are using performance enhancers. How could they not be? If a human could do what modern players in the NFL do without PEDs, then there would be no demand for PEDs.  If eating skinless chicken, praying to Jesus, and getting a good night’s sleep could make you into an all-pro in today’s NFL, then that’s what players would be doing.

Dish dropped NFL Network too?

Not only has Dish dropped the CW Network and WGN America from its lineup of programing, they’ve also dropped the NFL Network.

From the Wall Street Journal:

The NFL said Dish is the first distributor to drop the channel in its 13-year history. If the dispute isn’t resolved in the fall, Dish will also no longer carry the NFL’s RedZone service, which is a specialty channel that carries live action of all games every Sunday throughout the regular season.

Evidently Dish got rid of the NFL Network sometime last month. I didn’t realize it until yesterday while going through the channels. If they continue with this retarded game of chicken into the NFL season, it’s going to be their undoing. One of the main reasons I went with Dish was because they included the NFL RedZone channel in their basic sports package. To get RedZone on DirecTv, I would need to pay for the entire NFL package which included every out-of-market game. I didn’t want every out-of-market game. I just wanted to watch RedZone.

I’d like to cut the cord entirely and just switch to streaming. The problem is, a lot of the networks that offer content online make you go through either local cable, Dish, or DirecTv before you can stream. For example, before I could stream CNN Go on my Roku devices, I had to activate it through Dish. Without an active satellite or cable account, you can’t watch CNN through a streaming device. I should be able to pay a couple bucks a month for CNN without going through a gatekeeper.

America is a great country.

Henry Rollins is wrong about two Americas

LA Weekly published an article written by former Black Flag frontman Henry Rollins where he engages in virtue signalling on race in America, claiming that there is a white America and a black America.

From the article:

If white America experienced a fraction of what black America deals with regarding law enforcement, incarceration, the court system, employment and countless other facts of life, they would immediately and collectively lose their minds.

There are at least two different Americas. They have existed in an environment of almost unbroken mutual exclusivity. That’s over now.

No. That’s wrong. There isn’t a white America. There isn’t a black America. There’s just America. We fought a civil war over two Americas, one entrenched in the concept of slavery, the other one not. The dying embers of that concept were finally curb stomped into oblivion with the passing of the civil rights acts in the 1960’s.

Anyone today who’s talking about two Americas either doesn’t understand the concept of linear time or they’re being willfully dishonest. Henry Rollins was born too late to hold the line against Picket’s Charge. Henry Rollins was born too late to travel to Mississippi in the summer of 1964 and register black people to vote. How then does he fight against the idea of racial superiority and inequality? He either has to travel back in time, or he has to pretend things are the same as they were a long time ago.

He continues:

I’m an educated, Caucasian, heterosexual male. Does this ensure I will have success and live the American Dream? Obviously it doesn’t, but it damn sure drops me on second base with a great opportunity to steal third.

How interesting that Henry Rollins conflated education with the fallacy of white male privilege. Education isn’t something you’re born with. It’s something you must work for. You can go to a prestigious university, and if you don’t work and apply yourself, you’ll leave the school in worse shape than when you started.

Anyone who’s educated and benefits from that education isn’t lucky or privileged.

Speaking as a white male, I can attest that I’ve never benefited because of my skin color or my gender. Instead of giving people a baseball metaphor usually reserved for those born to wealth, Henry Rollins should provide a list of the privileges he’s enjoyed because he’s a white man.

I’d love to hear them.

When people like Henry Rollins say something stupid about the inherent advantage of being a white male, it makes some people think that if you aren’t a member of the exclusive white guy club, you’re getting screwed. That’s wrong.

Has it always been this way? No, of course not. Over time things have thankfully changed. It wasn’t easy. People sacrificed their lives to ensure all people would have equally. In the present day America, white males don’t enjoy any rights or privileges that other Americans don’t enjoy. To assert anything otherwise is both regressive and dishonest.

If one person believes the crap Henry Rollins is spewing about two Americas, it’s one person too many.

Tom Brady court appeal denied

New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady will finally have to serve the 4-game suspension levied on him by NFL commissioner Roger Goodell back in May of 2015.

Brady tried to get the U.S. Court Appeals for the Second Circuit to rehear his case. They issued a one-page document earlier today denying his petition.  His only chance now is to get his case heard by the U.S. Supreme Court, something they will almost certainly not do.

Then again, the U.S. Supreme Court named George W. Bush the president even though Al Gore, inventor of both the Internet and global warming, received the most votes. Who knows what the top court in all the land will do at any given time. Most of its members are too old to be Walmart door greeters. We shouldn’t be overly surprised by anything they do.

The cheating cheater known as Tom Brady is a spoiled baby. He cheated in the AFC Championship Game, using under inflated, easier to catch footballs. Instead of taking his suspension like a man, or what passes as a man in Massachusetts, he tried to use the courts to get out of paying the price for his wretched dishonesty. I wish he could be suspended for more than four games. He wasted everyone’s time. He should be penalized for that.

I hate Tom Brady. Religious cult leader and conveyor of folksy wisdom Will Rogers once said he hadn’t met a man he didn’t like. I would like to point out that Will Rogers obviously never met Tom Brady.

A review of Retro Pop Box 1970’s

I received a Retro Pop Box 1970’s for the month of April in the mail yesterday. This is the first box I’ve received from them. Although I’m new to Retro Pop Box, I’m very familiar with their business model. Customers pay a monthly subscription fee and the company ships a goodie box every month containing things relevant to a specific theme. In the case of Retro Pop Box, it’s pop culture items influenced by a specific decade. My Retro Pop Box is dedicated to the 1970’s.

As a child of the 70’s, I know only too well not everything was so great in the 1970’s. Sometimes people as old as me will lament on how things were so much better when they were a kid. I am not one of those people. In most ways, the 1970’s sucked. WW Vietnam was still raging on. In the third grade, I remember having to write Richard Nixon a fan letter. Gasoline was rationed and you could only buy it on odd or even days. Iranians stormed the U.S. embassy and took hostages. Fonzie jumped a shark. Polyester was king.

Even though the 1970’s isn’t my favorite decade, I really loved everything that I found inside my Retro Pop Box.

Contents of my Retro Pop Box 1970’s for April 2016

T-Shirt

The main item is a t-shirt. It’s tan and brown and based on Star Wars. It features a custom van with Princess Leia posing with her father’s large helmeted head painted on the side. Chewbacca is sitting in the passenger seat wearing a tank-top. Han is leaning against the van wearing sneakers. I’m not really sure that’s cannon. Han wearing sneakers, but it’s awesome.

The t-shirt is nice. Unlike the t-shirts I’ve received from Loot Crate or the Marvel Collector Corps, this t-shirt is long. I haven’t washed it yet, but it’s a cotton poly blend (90/10), so it shouldn’t shrink.

Socks

It came with socks decorated with large boom boxes. Unlike the socks I’ve pulled out of Loot Crate boxes, these socks are actually large enough and stretchy enough to wear on my ginormous feet.

Magic Rocks

I forgot all about these until seeing them again. You sprinkle them in water and they eventually grow into rainbow colored crystals. Not only are they pretty to look at, after the crystals come to full maturation, drinking the water will make you gay. At least that’s what I once heard in Lancaster First Assembly of God Sunday School.

Tab Cola Lapel Pin

Of all the items in the box, this is actually my favorite. Tab was a sugar-free cola produced by Coke that was marketed towards women. In the 70’s only woman were concerned with consuming too much sugar because of what it did to their figures. This was before they invented type 2 diabetes for men. The artificial sweetener in Tab not only caused cancer in rats, it tasted like rat cancer.  I can’t stress enough how bad Tab tasted. Compared to Tab, Diet Coke tastes like the nectar of the gods.

Zotz Candy

Rounding out the contents of the box were two pieces of Zotz hard candy. I have no recollection of this this candy. According to the wrapper, the center fizzes in your mouth. I remember Pop Rocks, but not Zotz.

My Conclusion

Unlike Loot Crate or Marvel Collector Corps, I recommend giving Retro Pop Box a try. All good stuff and no filler. Loot Crate will include at most 1.2 things worth having. The rest of the box will have stuff you’d expect to find in the clearance bin at Toys R Us. Marvel Collector Corps will charge your credit card twice and then not send you anything. If you like pop culture stuff from a specific decade, than give Retro Pop Box a try. Not only do they have boxes for the ’70s and ’80s, they will soon be rolling out a box for the ’90s. Let’s just hope it doesn’t include anything related to Monica’s blue dress.

[Join Retro Pop Box]

Redskins bench Robert Griffin III, name Kirk Cousins starter

It’s been a bad couple of months for Washington Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III. First, the world finds out that fellow Subway Sandwiches pitchman Jared Fogle is a child porn loving pedophile. Then, Griffin’s signature shoe from Adidas started showing up on the shelves at discount outlets like Ross and Marshall’s. Now, Kirk Cousins has been named the starting quarterback for the 2015 season. Griffin, the 2011 Heisman Trophy winner, and the second overall pick of the 2012 NFL Draft will be either Cousins’ back-up, or more likely, Cousins’ back-up’ back-up.

The Roman numeral three on the back of Griffin’s jersey may just end up serving the dual purpose of identifying his pecking order on the depth chart, as in third-string.

That’s if he doesn’t get cut or traded, not that I can imagine a scenario where another team would trade for Robert Griffin III.

Griffin will earn make $3,269,877 from the Redskins this season. Since that’s guaranteed, the Redskins will be paying him that much whether he’s with the team or not. Plus, his total salary represents $6,719,713 towards this season’s salary cap. That takes into account his base salary and his initial signing bonus of $13,799,344 spread out over four years. When an NFL team cuts a player, the remaining portion of his signing bonus is applied in full against the cap. This is not a factor with Griffin. Since this is the final year under contract, there are no more remaining years to apply to the cap.

Should the Redskins just cut Griffin? Yes. He’s not worth a roster spot. NFL teams are allowed only 53 players on the active roster. Keep Griffin on the team, and that’s one less player that could help the team win games.

Redskins bench Robert Griffin III, name Kirk Cousins starter - Bent Corner
Robert Griffin III sitting on the bench in full pout mode.

If the Redskins need someone to sit on the bench and pout, there’s no reason they need to waste a roster spot for it. They could just hire a 14-year-old girl, assign her a place on the bench, and take away her cell phone. Don’t let a teenage girl tweet or post crap on Facebook, she’ll act very much like Robert Griffin III sitting on the bench.

Hypothetically, she would provide the same value as Griffin, but she wouldn’t waste a roster spot.

The Redskins should just cut Griffin. Even if they don’t mind burning a roster spot on a player who won’t be positively contributing this season, having him stick around creates a problem for Kirk Cousins. At best, Cousins is an average quarterback in the NFL. There’s nothing wrong with being average. It’s just that there will be times when Cousins is going to fail. Keep Griffin on the team and I guarantee you eyes will turn to Griffin sulking sitting on the bench.

I’m not sure how that helps anyone.

The Redskins should just cut Griffin and allow him to go sign with the Oakland Raiders. That’s where first-round draft busts go when they’re cut. They go to Oakland and play on dirt.