Jeff MacGregor brings the hammer down on Roger Goodell and the NFL re: its lockout of the refs. The money shot:
If Roger Goodell and the NFL and the NFL owners were serious about player safety and player conduct, for $50 million a year — less than 1 percent of total revenue — they could hire 200 well-trained full-time officials at $250,000 each.
But the NFL and the NFL owners and Roger Goodell are not serious about those things. They’re only serious about looking serious about those things. With the simple application of cash and backbone, they could make the game safer overnight. Instead, they’ll nickel-and-dime the officials’ union just because they can. And because we live in a moment when capital openly carries a nightstick in every debate over money or politics, you’ll let them get away with it.
Corporate thugs everywhere are trying to bust what’s left of the unions, and lockouts are now their favored tactic. From Con Ed to Entergy to American Crystal Sugar, and from the NHL to the NBA to the NFL, ownership’s message is clear: Too much for us is never enough. Too much for you is socialism.
Go read it. Read every damned word. Then reflect on how our sports culture mirrors our political economy.
Meanwhile, not a goddamned peep out of the players (that I’ve heard, anyway). You know, the ones who are members of the players union? The ones who a year ago this time were dealing with the same pack of pathological billionaire jackals? Yeah, them.
You’d think a group of people who came out of that process as mad as the NFLPA membership did would be more than happy to stand up for the zebras. You’d think a group of people who hate Roger Goodell as bad as the players do – and trust me, they hate him a lot – would be looking for any opportunity to do the right thing, even if it’s for the wrong reasons. You’d think they’d sack up and refuse to play until the NFL pulled its head out of its ass.
You’d think. But apparently you’d be wrong. New motto of the NFLPA: I got mine, and fuck you.
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