by John Walters*

*This will be our final post…at least for the next three weeks.** We’ll be working with that five-ring circus known as the Tokyo Olympics and it’s best for the two to not overlap. See you in, or slightly before, September.

**I may do a short post here or there. We cannot let the Suns winning an NBA championship go unremarked upon.

Unpopular Opinions

A few thoughts we had and we doubt anyone will agree with all four of our notions here (maybe one, tops):

  1. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if one day in the near future President Biden announced that any state that purports to wish to secede from the union be allowed to take a popular vote (not a vote in its state legislature) and be granted emancipation? You want to exit, Texas? Kentucky? God bless you. All the social security payments stop now. The medicare stops now. The military bases are relocated. And if you want to travel from Dallas to Branson, you’re gonna need a passport. Enjoy your freedom. No two states pay more in federal taxes than California and New York. Okay, so you do wanna stay, Florida and Texas, but you don’t like that you don’t always get your way? You sound like every entitled teenager threatening to run away we’ve ever met. Go. Or stay, and clean your room.
  2. Another reason I’m an independent: the child tax credit. Why are we giving money to people for making financially irresponsible decisions? If you have more children than you can afford to care for, why are the rest of us paying for it? The reason: because politicians know they will never strike out extolling family values. But I submit this: if Earth were to hire a consultant to advise on how better to run this little blue ship, I imagine the first thing the consultant would come back with is, Stop making people! You have a surplus. In a world that thinks clearly and is not blinded by emotion or antiquated Biblical aphorisms (Be fruitful and multiply–HA!), you’d be giving tax credits to the people who do not procreate. As a thank you. And I don’t want the government’s (your) money for having decided to not have children. I just don’t believe a government governs best that rewards those of us who make irresponsible decisions by placing the burden on those who did not.
  3. Okay, do I have this correct: if you’ve been vaccinated, you are just as like to carry the virus and the variant as someone not vaccinated? You are just as likely to pass it on to someone who is not vaccinated? The difference is that you will not get sick or barely sick? So the principal consequence to the general population is that hospital staffs will continue to be overburdened by the illnesses of those who are unvaccinated? And while that’s enough of a reason, for this scribe, to get vaccinated (to relieve their burden), isn’t this some intelligence-based Darwinism playing out? Those most likely to suffer the consequences of failure to vaccinate (besides hospital staffs) are the willfully ignorant and, mostly, morbidly obese? I hate to sound like a Newsmax anchor, but that’s just thinning the herd. Now, I’ve been vaccinated. And I’d get vaccinated if I weren’t. But other than concern for those in the health-care field (and that’s a HUGE “other than”), I say play on. Let those who refuse to get vaccinated suffer the consequences of their decisions. It is, still, a free country (thanks, Capitol Police). UPDATE: The White House reports that 1 in 5 new coronavirus cases this week were from Florida. Make it rain, Florida!
  4. Finally, if I have not lost all of you yet, here’s a thought I had: What if someone attempts to follow all of the teachings of Jesus without necessarily believing in the existence of God? Is this person any less holy than the most devout follower of any Christian church? I’m trying to imagine the conversation if such a person dies and discovers that there is actually a heaven with all the fairy-tale pearly gates, etc. God meets him at the gates. I’m trying to imagine a Supreme Being who acknowledges that few people lived a more devout and selfless life but, alas, because that person did not believe in God he or she will not be granted entrance. I’m sorry, Heavenly Father, but what kind of outfit are you running here? Is your ego so fragile that You need me to worship You more than You want us to love one another and love thy neighbor as thyself? If this is the best You can do, then maybe I don’t want to be part of this Eternal Life show you’ve got going on anyway. It sounds a lot like some Jim Harbaugh b.s. where you’re more about players supplicating to you than you are about winning games. Isn’t winning games the entire point? And if someone’s decency and kindness is performed primarily because they’re trying to ace the class (i.e., get into heaven), isn’t that like telling a child she has to be nice or Santa won’t visit?

Okay, now if I’ve lost absolutely everyone, on to some other items…

Staying In Character

For England, the final of last Sunday’s EuroCup played out like a season-ending episode of Ted Lasso. The Three Lions took Italy to penalty kicks but in the PK phase missed three shots. All three misses came at the feet of black players and, as you can imagine, they received a wave of racist-tinged hate on line for their failure.

Hence, last night in Los Angeles at the Season 2 premiere of Ted Lasso, star Jason Sudeikis wore a shirt with their names on the front. In support of them, of course. Now if everyone in English can just be little goldfish, we’ll be good.

How Do You Solve A Problem Like Maria?

Submitted: Maria Taylor is the third most valuable tool in ESPN’s belt after Scott Van Pelt and Rece Davis. I realize the numbers would claim that Screamin’ A. Smith ranks above her, but he’s just a caricature that fools some of the people all of the time. Taylor is a versatile and valuable asset, just entering the prime of her career, and for a MAJOR media company seeking to ring the inclusivity bell, what personage at ESPN is more valuable in the decade ahead?

And yet it looks as if ESPN is about to lose Taylor to NBC. It may be about the money, it may be about a legacy of black female talent at ESPN being under-appreciated and mistreated. Earlier I tweeted that this was the greatest tug-of-war saga involving a Maria since Capt. Von Trapp took on the abbey, but then the always witty @MarkEnnis reminded me that the Jets and Sharks might have a thing to say about that.

Maria Taylor: at ESPN she had more than one job. Now she has more than one offer. Regardless of what offer Taylor chooses, she’ll be ESPN’s NBA Finals pregame host throughout the rest of the series. That’s leverage.

The Rain In Spain Flows Mainly In The Plain–But This Isn’t Spain*

*The judges will not accept “Rain, Rhine, Rhone” or “God, Blessem”

Torrents of rain in Germany, Netherlands and Belgium have put parts of central Europe under water and more than 125 people have perished and reportedly more than 1,300 are missing. Europe hasn’t looked this in disarray since the Fuhrer was in charge, no?

This is the town of Blessem, Germany, after the floods caused a massive sinkhole to form. I have no editorial commentary to add.

Quest For Knowledge

Move over, Zaila Avant-garde, there’s a new unicorn in town. This is Kashe Quest, barely 3 years old, who earlier this year became the youngest-ever Mensa member with an IQ of 146. A native of Los Angeles, Quest is already bilingual and can identify every element in the periodic table and every state. She also has cool hair. That Mensa membership card will be a unique item to bring to show-and-tell.

It’s Gorge-ous

Meet America’s newest national park, New River Gorge in West Virginia. Certainly, it’s lovely but it must be said that the standards for what becomes a national park east of the Rockies are a little less stringent than those west of the Continental Divide. Somewhere Oak Creek Canyon is wondering what it has to do to garner similar status.

We still don’t understand how come Niagara Falls is not a national park. So we share it with Canada. So what? Canadians are very polite. Are they going to throw a hissy if we claim it as a co-national park? We think not.

5 thoughts on “IT’S ALL HAPPENING!

  1. Good luck with your Olympic assignment. I recently caught up with the US women’s track trials, and I would buy stock in two athletes, Sydney McLaughlin and Annie Kunz, to get plenty of face time on NBC.

    As you start your break, let me say that of all the blogs that regularly root for the decimation (if not total destruction) of the human race, yours is my favorite.

  2. I am very excited that you’ll be working with (at?) the Olympics! But verklempt that you can’t drop us a note or two. Come on, it’s like you’re going to Santa’s Workshop at the North Pole but not telling your buds any inside scoop; no insight on how the toys get made, nothing about what “Rudolf” is really like. 😉 Can you tell us where/in what area you’ll be working? For TV?


    #1 – agree
    #2 – agree
    #4 – agree
    #3 – there’s only ONE reason I want every damn person in this country who is not allergic to an ingredient (or fighting another illness) to HAVE to get the Covid vaccine – because the unvaccinated are KEEPING COVID GOING & mutating & putting ALL of us at risk! F*ck that! The health of the MAJORITY trumps (snicker, snicker) the “rights” of the individual. The “anti-vaccine” crowd will be responsible for bringing back Smallpox, Polio, Measles, etc. Then again, YOU are fine with “culling the herd” so maybe you don’t see a problem.

    BTW, one of the idiots that refuses to get the Covid vaccine is my older sister. She hates Trump as much as I do but I believe she’s on FB all the time & that is what I’m guessing is explanation for this INSANITY. I stopped all contact with her in March after I told her I would not be coming to her funeral. After my last 4 months, I have NO time for that shit.

    • Great to hear from you, Susie B.

      The last time I shared insights about the Olympics as an insider, it did not go well for me. So those days are over. My bad, but I’ve learned my lesson. All I’ll say is that I’ll be working for a cable arm that keeps night and early-morning hours.

      I will admit to not understanding as much as possible about Covid and mutations (very little, in fact). Is there a reason Covid could not mutate in vaccinated me and I just am not affected? But I could still pass it to others?

      Oh, and I will occasionally do a short item… for instance after the Suns win the NBA Finals, which I’ll not be able to watch live now.

  3. JW –

    I hope you enjoy the hell out of working the Olympics. I’m so excited for you (I know it isn’t your first time)!

    Your opinions are always thought-provoking, especially the unpopular ones.

    I could totally do without some states – if they truly want to go, so be it. But, on the flip side, that would cause so much headache for, well, just about everyone. The Union states would not be immune. Plus, would a “stay or leave” policy undermine part of the Civil War? Obviously, not the emancipation of slaves, but the part where Lincoln lead the charge to bring the states back together? Also, with some states leaving – we’ll call them the New Confederate States (NCS – now we’re getting close to a primetime procedural) – there’ll inevitably be some animosity between them and the Union states. And, I would surmise, would eventually lead to a war, even if thing started out amicably.

    I have 3 kids, so the Child Tax Credit will end up paying me pretty significantly. But, on the other hand, I probably don’t need it – certainly not the expanded version of it. That said, it seems to me that it’s mostly designed to prevent children born to less well off families from becoming an even bigger burden on the system. But, maybe that’s just me. I could certainly see where it may be better implemented if it were only available for those making less than $25k/year. Or some sort of graduated rate for those in lower income brackets. Also – and I could be wrong, but my understanding is that the birth rate is at an all-time low – that we’re seeing declines in new births. Just a quick search of the Google machine, and it’s showing that the birth rate (births per woman) was over 3.5 in 1960, and we’re sitting at 1.73 as of 2018.

    As for vaccinations – my biggest concern at this point is making sure that my kids are safe. As I mentioned above, I’ve got 3 of them, and the oldest is 10. So, none of them are eligible for the vaccine, which has a hard cut off at 12 years old. Thus, I’m extremely concerned for their safety – which is being affected by those who can get vaccinated not getting vaccinated. Perhaps, also, I’m not completely following your line of thought.

    And, lastly, for item #4 – after the Ringed Circus, please come to the Chicago area. Beers on me. You no doubt have Domer friends in the area, so visit them and spend an afternoon with me at my local watering hole to shoot the breeze. Until then, I’ll only say this: The God of the Bible is less interested in what you do and say, as He is healing and forgiving. Or, as it’s stated in Luke 14:18-21:

    “The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me,
    Because He anointed Me to bring good news to the poor.
    He has sent Me to proclaim release to captives,
    And recovery of sight to the blind,
    To set free those who are oppressed,
    19 To proclaim the favorable year of the Lord.”

    20 And He rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down; and the eyes of all the people in the synagogue were intently directed at Him. 21 Now He began to say to them, “Today this Scripture has been fulfilled in your [e]hearing.”

    Stay safe, and can’t wait to see you start posting again in a month or so.

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