Red Team? Blue Team? Start Your Own Team.

 

Saturday afternoon, a shocking story shook the nation to its core. Not trivia about North Korean nukes, massive flooding in Puerto Rico, or the collapse of the US healthcare system. This was urgent.

Within minutes, millions across the country interrupted conversations with their kids, set aside their chores, and canceled their Saturday night plans. A battle is afoot and their nation needed them.

Remember when multimillionaire President Trump criticized a multimillionaire football player last night? Well today, a multimillionaire basketball player said he didn’t want to go to the White House no more. So, President Trump said the multimillionaire basketball player wasn’t welcome at the White House in the first place. And then a different multimillionaire basketball player tweeted something mean at President Trump.

Honestly, I’m just happy the Republic hasn’t collapsed.

A few million put on their Red Team uniforms and rushed to their computers. Another few million put on their Blue Team uniforms and grabbed their iPhones. To the barricades, citizens!

Then they wasted a beautiful Saturday afternoon tweeting at each other.

The sobering events that precipitated today’s meme battle are neither important nor interesting. They don’t matter and everyone knows they don’t matter. Just like whatever fight we had yesterday and the day before and the day before that.

“OMG!!! Trump acted like Trump!” the Blue Team shrieks.

“OMG!!! Celebrities are shallow!” the Red Team wails.

And on it goes until someone says a new dumb thing and the St. Vitus hoedown starts all over. Granted, the Troller-in-Chief has accelerated these cycles since Twitter is his favorite medium, but every dumb pro-Obama/anti-Obama statement had a similar, though slower, pattern.

As online friends and followers throw on their jerseys and rush into another keyboard tussle, they demand we join them.

“If you don’t denounce Trump, then you support racism!”

“If you don’t denounce the athlete, then you hate the troops!”

Ludicrous.

I’m not on the Blue Team. I’m not on the Red Team. I’m on my team.

Occasionally, I’ll exploit the Reds or Blues to advance my aims in, well, making America great again. But I refuse to surrender my individuality to be an extra in someone else’s movie. As the decades of DC failure have shown us time and again, none of these politicians consider themselves to be on my team. I’m just returning the favor.

Republican leaders will like me if I vote for them. Celebrities will like me if I buy tickets. But neither views me as an equal, just a pawn from which they extract money and power. Those days are long gone.

I look at it this way, in sports and in life: When I see the two teams battling on a football field, I’m not going to passively cheer them from the stands. Instead, I’ll head over to the basketball court to see if I can start my own game. And, to be honest, once the hoops scene gets too crowded, I’ll walk down to the baseball field and try starting a game there.

Politicians are just temp employees we hire to do our bidding. If they suck, we fire them. They aren’t gods we bow to or team owners issuing orders. We’re Americans, dammit.

Celebrities are court jesters we pay to amuse us. When they get too mouthy, we kick them out of the dining hall. That’s the beauty of capitalism.

So, if any of our so-called elites want me to join their team, no thanks. I simply have better things to do. Today I saw one of my daughters dominate a cross-country race and my other daughter played me a song on her guitar. I took them out for lunch, listened to a cool podcast, then decided to write for a while.

In other words, I left the football stadium and started my own pick-up game. If the Twitter warriors want to join me, cool. If not, that’s cool as well. I just hope they consider setting down the phone for a while and starting their own thing.

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There are 80 comments.

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  1. Member

    Jon Gabriel, Ed.: Celebrities are court jesters we pay to amuse us. When they get too mouthy, we kick them out of the dining hall. That’s the beauty of capitalism.

    Amen to that.

    And for the second time today, I reckon I’ll refer back to this:

    https://ricochet.com/452635/hot-winds-from-washington-the-press-the-imperial-presidency-and-you/

    • #1
    • September 23, 2017 at 5:29 pm
    • 7 likes
  2. Member

    Jon Gabriel, Ed.: So, if any of our so-called elites want me to join their team, no thanks. I simply have better things to do. Just today I saw one of my daughters dominate a cross-country race and my other daughter played me a song on her guitar. I took them out for lunch, listened to a cool podcast, then decided to write for a while.

    Sounds like a nice life, Jon. Enjoy every minute of it.

    • #2
    • September 23, 2017 at 5:31 pm
    • 7 likes
  3. Member

    Its moments like these petty spats that makes me think the anarchist where on to something, in that won’t it be great if the state was irrelevant to my life? I mean it often is, I watch the puppet show that you described and it typically doesn’t have any consequences. But when it does….

    • #3
    • September 23, 2017 at 5:33 pm
    • 5 likes
  4. Member

    If it wasn’t for this post on Ricochet, I wouldn’t have even known this massive Twitter War occurred. I count myself blessed.

    • #4
    • September 23, 2017 at 5:37 pm
    • 28 likes
  5. Member

    Columbo (View Comment):
    If it wasn’t for this post on Ricochet, I wouldn’t have even known this massive Twitter War occurred. I count myself blessed.

    Amen to that! I guess I’m just a cultural ignoramus. That, and I refuse to use Twitter and have mostly weaned myself off of Facebook.

    • #5
    • September 23, 2017 at 5:46 pm
    • 13 likes
  6. Member

    Let me know when the sticky grenades start to fly.

    • #6
    • September 23, 2017 at 5:48 pm
    • 7 likes
  7. Thatcher

    Bowstitch — or whatever the hell his name is — thinks that Donnie doesn’t show enough respect for the NFL. If Bulworth — or whatever the hell his name is — had any respect for the NFL he’d apologize and resign. The only thing Babbitt — or whatever the hell his name is — has managed to accomplish during his tenure is to make me miss Pete Rozelle.

    Shut up, Donnie. Starting slap-fights on Twitter is not what you were hired to do. Responding to slap-fights on Twitter is not what you were hired to do either. Run your country, not your mouth.

    • #7
    • September 23, 2017 at 5:54 pm
    • 9 likes
  8. Member

    I saw it on the front page of Drudge and gave it 20 seconds of reading then 5 seconds of thought.

    Trump plays obnoxiously to his base. Spoiled athletes opine. NFL commish pulled his head out of his backside to blurt a response. Players association defends free speech ( this form of free speech )

    I currently don’t care what anyone is outraged about.

    I’ve reached the point where outrage induces yawns.

    This response took 60 seconds. Hmmmm.

    • #8
    • September 23, 2017 at 5:56 pm
    • 12 likes
  9. Member

    One of the various colleges I have attended has made it very easy to no longer donate, and the NFL is helping me discover my general love of other things to do.

    • #9
    • September 23, 2017 at 6:02 pm
    • 17 likes
  10. Member

    Read a novel. Take a drive. Grab a cheeseburger. Live a life. Stop to think.

    And, of course, post the results on Ricochet.

    • #10
    • September 23, 2017 at 6:20 pm
    • 7 likes
  11. Member

    Your missing the boat on this Jon.

    You could be talking about how the NFL and other sports leagues are a formal trust who have a special carve out in anti-trust law, and that maybe we should consider removing that and any other state and federal subsidies that may exist as the sports leagues no longer act in the general public interest.

    There are a number of nice scenarios where advancing good public policy AND royally screwing ones enemies overlap. This is the sweet spot for you.

    You can influence events by pointing out to long standing conservatarian public policy positions to a new and increasing aggressive audience ready to break some furniture.

    just sayin’.

    • #11
    • September 23, 2017 at 6:21 pm
    • 17 likes
  12. Moderator
    She

    I’m from Pittsburgh. We (still) have James Harrison on our team. So, this jostling between the President and our favorite sports team is nothing new to us.

    In the (highly unlikely) event that the Stillers win a seventh Superbowl this year, it wouldn’t surprise me at all if James Harrison refused, for the third time, and for the third President (no-one can say he’s not bipartisan–Bush II (2006), Obama (2009), Trump (20??)), to visit the White House with his team, after the win.

    Why? According to Harrison, it’s not political: “If you want to see the Pittsburgh Steelers, invite us when we don’t win the Super Bowl.” OK, James. Can’t really fault the logic there.

    Then, there are the many New England Patriots who didn’t visit the White House this past January: Tom Brady, Danny Amendola, and a couple dozen others. Was that political? No idea. Don’t really care.

    What I am pretty sure about is that even if we stipulate (which I’m not entirely prepared to do) that a football player in uniform, on company time, has the right to sit, stand on his head, wiggle his ears or twiddle his thumbs while the National Anthem is played at the start of the game, there isn’t a single thing in the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, or any piece of legal jurisprudence I know of, that says that the National Football League is required to give him a national stage on which to act out his self-important grandiosity.

    Let them sit in the locker room. Where, of course, there are no cameras. And they can do whatever they want. Free speech wins. Football loving, National Anthem-singing fans win. And the game goes on.

    As for what the President does to inflame the situation, well, he does have a national stage. And his game is 7x24x365. And there’s no locker room. And the cameras are always rolling. You pays your money and you takes your choice. It is what it is.

    • #12
    • September 23, 2017 at 6:31 pm
    • 8 likes
  13. Member

    Guruforhire (View Comment):
    You can influence events by pointing out to long standing conservatarian public policy positions to a new and increasing aggressive audience ready to break some furniture.

    He’s got a point, you know?

    • #13
    • September 23, 2017 at 6:33 pm
    • 1 like
  14. Thatcher

    She (View Comment):
    I’m from Pittsburgh. We (still) have James Harrison on our team. So, this jostling between the President and our favorite sports team is nothing new to us.

    In the (highly unlikely) event that the Stillers win a seventh Superbowl this year, it wouldn’t surprise me at all if James Harrison refused, for the third time, and for the third President (no-one can say he’s not bipartisan–Bush II (2006), Obama (2009), Trump (20??)), to visit the White House with his team, after the win.

    Why? According to Harrison, it’s not political: “If you want to see the Pittsburgh Steelers, invite us when we don’t win the Super Bowl.” OK, James. Can’t really fault the logic there.

    Then, there are the many New England Patriots who didn’t visit the White House this past January: Tom Brady, Danny Amendola, and a couple dozen others. Was that political? No idea. Don’t really care.

    What I am pretty sure about is that even if we stipulate (which I’m not entirely prepared to do) that a football player in uniform, on company time, has the right to sit, stand on his head, wiggle his ears or twiddle his thumbs while the National Anthem is played at the start of the game, there isn’t a single thing in the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, or any piece of legal jurisprudence I know of, that says that the National Football League is required to give him a national stage on which to act out his self-important grandiosity.

    Let them sit in the locker room. Where, of course, there are no cameras. And they can do whatever they want. Free speech wins. Football loving, National Anthem-singing fans win. And the game goes on.

    As for what the President does to inflame the situation, well, he does have a national stage. And his game is 7x24x365. And there’s no locker room. And the cameras are always rolling. You pays your money and you takes your choice. It is what it is.

    I’m good with all of that. I’m not going to pay attention to the NFL until Chicago gets a team.

    • #14
    • September 23, 2017 at 6:55 pm
    • 7 likes
  15. Chief
    Jon Gabriel, Ed. Post author

    Columbo (View Comment):
    If it wasn’t for this post on Ricochet, I wouldn’t have even known this massive Twitter War occurred. I count myself blessed.

    You are blessed, indeed.

    • #15
    • September 23, 2017 at 6:58 pm
    • 3 likes
  16. Chief
    Jon Gabriel, Ed. Post author

    Guruforhire (View Comment):
    Your missing the boat on this Jon.

    You could be talking about how the NFL and other sports leagues are a formal trust who have a special carve out in anti-trust law, and that maybe we should consider removing that and any other state and federal subsidies that may exist as the sports leagues no longer act in the general public interest.

    There are a number of nice scenarios where advancing good public policy AND royally screwing ones enemies overlap. This is the sweet spot for you.

    You can influence events by pointing out to long standing conservatarian public policy positions to a new and increasing aggressive audience ready to break some furniture.

    just sayin’.

    I’ve bashed public financing of stadiums a few times on here if memory serves, but anti-trust laws are above my paygrade. However, doing what you recommend is far more interesting to me than just yelling at people on Twitter. Your idea would actually be doing something.

    • #16
    • September 23, 2017 at 7:02 pm
    • 7 likes
  17. Member

    I suppose the good news none of this nonsense matters but the bad news is that our president enthusiastically joins in.

    • #17
    • September 23, 2017 at 7:04 pm
    • 6 likes
  18. Inactive
    MLH

    I like @hustler46060 ‘s game plan!

    • #18
    • September 23, 2017 at 7:04 pm
    • 4 likes
  19. Member

    I Walton (View Comment):
    I suppose the good news none of this nonsense matters but the bad news is that our president enthusiastically joins in.

    A man’s gotta have a hobby. Better than hookers and blackjack.

    • #19
    • September 23, 2017 at 7:09 pm
    • 5 likes
  20. Member

    Arahant (View Comment):

    I Walton (View Comment):
    I suppose the good news none of this nonsense matters but the bad news is that our president enthusiastically joins in.

    A man’s gotta have a hobby. Better than hookers and blackjack.

    I doubt that.

    • #20
    • September 23, 2017 at 7:30 pm
    • 8 likes
  21. Member

    Percival (View Comment):
    has managed to accomplish during his tenure is to make me miss Pete Rozelle.

    That made me smile

    • #21
    • September 23, 2017 at 7:59 pm
    • 4 likes
  22. Member

    I’m an old time baseball fan. I left it when they got on those PED’s. Now I’m back bigly. I can’t remember the last time I watched pro bball and pro fball is phasing out. ESPN as well. I use mlb.tv. I don’t need no social media beyond Ricochet.

    • #22
    • September 23, 2017 at 8:03 pm
    • 5 likes
  23. Member

    Columbo (View Comment):
    If it wasn’t for this post on Ricochet, I wouldn’t have even known this massive Twitter War occurred. I count myself blessed.

    Metoo.

    • #23
    • September 23, 2017 at 8:12 pm
    • 2 likes
  24. Member

    I spent my afternoon sleeping after cleaning my kitchen in frenzy. Then I went out and yanked up a bunch more of our horrible tomato vines and ran around with our borrowed puppy until my athsma and lack of fitness kicked in. I missed all this crap.

    • #24
    • September 23, 2017 at 8:23 pm
    • 12 likes
  25. Member

    Percival (View Comment):

    She (View Comment):
    …..

    I’m good with all of that. I’m not going to pay attention to the NFL until Chicago gets a team.

    As a Chicagoan that stings. And rings too true. Oh Dick Butkus, why have you forsaken us?

    • #25
    • September 23, 2017 at 8:39 pm
    • 8 likes
  26. Member

    Jon Gabriel, Ed.: I’m not on the Blue Team. I’m not on the Red Team. I’m on my team.

    If only we could form a team of people on their own team…

    • #26
    • September 23, 2017 at 8:49 pm
    • 3 likes
  27. Thatcher

    The NFL jumped the shark back in 2009 when they prevented Rush Limbaugh from becoming a part-owner of the then-St. Louis Rams. Since then, they have been nothing but a left-converged subsidiary of the Democratic Party.

    • #27
    • September 23, 2017 at 8:53 pm
    • 7 likes
  28. Member

    Pink shoes. Enough said.

    • #28
    • September 23, 2017 at 8:59 pm
    • 13 likes
  29. Reagan

    Columbo (View Comment):
    If it wasn’t for this post on Ricochet, I wouldn’t have even known this massive Twitter War occurred. I count myself blessed.

    Twitter is a curse. A permanent, never ending, comment section. Dante couldn’t have dreamed up such a nightmare.

    • #29
    • September 23, 2017 at 9:22 pm
    • 11 likes
  30. Moderator

    Jon Gabriel, Ed. (View Comment):

    Guruforhire (View Comment):
    Your missing the boat on this Jon.

    You could be talking about how the NFL and other sports leagues are a formal trust who have a special carve out in anti-trust law, and that maybe we should consider removing that and any other state and federal subsidies that may exist as the sports leagues no longer act in the general public interest.

    There are a number of nice scenarios where advancing good public policy AND royally screwing ones enemies overlap. This is the sweet spot for you.

    You can influence events by pointing out to long standing conservatarian public policy positions to a new and increasing aggressive audience ready to break some furniture.

    just sayin’.

    I’ve bashed public financing of stadiums a few times on here if memory serves, but anti-trust laws are above my paygrade. However, doing what you recommend is far more interesting to me than just yelling at people on Twitter. Your idea would actually be doing something.

    I don’t know about anti-trust, but how about stripping the NFL of its not-for-profit tax status? Dare the liberals to defend tax subsidies for millionaires.

    • #30
    • September 23, 2017 at 9:39 pm
    • 9 likes
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