Football, masturbatory justice, and propaganda
If you haven't already done so, check out the two-part story The Bells: First Family of Potter Football at the E.L. Historical Society web site. The information and photos provide an in-depth look at one of East Liverpool's great sports families.
A big win for Pittsburgh
The Post-Gazette's Bob Smizik wrote this morning: "Hard to believe considering all the negatives attached to them earlier in the season, but after eight games . . . the Steelers by almost every indicator are the best team in the AFC and therefore a leading candidate to play in the Super Bowl."
Hold on there, Bob! While the Pittsburgh Steelers' thrubbing of the New England Patriots on Sunday was a complete and inspiring victory, a seventh Super Bowl ring is a long way off. Pittsburgh has yet to show it can play with the Baltimore Ravens, whose defense won't look anything like New England's.
Astute observers will note that two weeks ago I didn't give the Steelers a chance against Tom Brady's Patriots. I went so far as to call Sunday's game a "no brainer" in favor of the Pats. While I am pleased to be wrong--very pleased--Pittsburgh has yet to show they can beat the Ravens, who visit the former Steel City next Sunday night. If the Steelers can handle Baltimore on the national stage, they can be considered the class of the AFC. Not before.
But for now, let's enjoy the victory over the Patriots. The Steelers beat the Pats in every phase of the game. If there was a problem, it was that New England remained in the game to the end. Had the Steelers been able to score red-zone touchdowns--even one--instead of field goals in the second half, this game would have been a blowout. That it wasn't is a testament to the Patriots, a team the Steelers very well could see again in the playoffs.
The Cincinnati Bengals (5-2) won again, making the AFC North a formidable division. Early in the year, everyone counted the two Cincy games as easy wins. That hasty conclusion now must be revised, and what appeared to be a relatively easy 2011 schedule has been recast. There are four challenging games left in the regular season: the two with Cincinnati, San Francisco, and next week's contest with Baltimore, which is a must-win any way you cut it. With all this competition, it's going to be a great season after all!
God abandons Tebow
A fickle Yahweh, whose spirit surrounded Denver Broncos quarterback Tim Tebow for a few minutes last week, threw his young zealot to the lions yesterday. The Detroit Lions defense ate Tebow alive in the Broncos 45-10 home-field loss. The lesson is clear: It takes more than prayer to win in the NFL.
Penis pumping judge
On entirely different note, did you hear about Oklahoma judge who served 20 months in prison after being caught using a penis pump to masturbate while his court was in session? Apparently the conviction itself flew under the radar, but the news last week was that the Oklahoma Supreme Court decided that Judge Donald Thompson doesn't deserve his $7,789 judicial pension.
The judge was convicted of indecent exposure after using the penis pump to masturbate in court "almost daily." The investigation turned up semen residue on the floor, his judicial robes, and on the chair behind his bench. Just when you think you've seen everything . . . .
Republican goals met
With Republican candidates and Tea Party activists doing everything they can to make life easier for the nation's wealthy, news broke last week that showed important gains for the rich and their political pawns.
The Congressional Budget Office published numbers revealing that the after-tax income of the top 1 percent of American households nearly quadrupled (up 275 percent) between 1979 and 2007. During the same time period, middle-income folks saw just a 40 percent increase, and bottom dwellers increased their "wealth" by just 18 percent.
Republican candidates and Tea Partiers keep calling the rich "job creators," yet there is little evidence that they are creating jobs with all their money. Hmmm.
Speaking of populist frauds
After appearing with the Occupy Wall Street crowd, propagandist/filmmaker Michael Moore had to admit that he is part of the 1 percent. Moore then went on to talk about how he distributed his newfound wealth to charities after the success of his 1989 film Roger and Me. He didn't say what he's done with his fortune since then.
Nevertheless, Moore continues to strut around in his working-class costume attempting to convince the 99 percent that he is one of them.