Nepotism Run Amok

When it comes down to it, there’s only one sport on which the Gormogons agree, and that’s hockey—it’s awesome.

The Czar loves baseball, and GorT and Ghettoputer love soccer and there’s not much either of us can do to change that. As it should be: after all, it’s not like any of us like the NBA or something stupid like that.

But the Czar is happy to receive Mark’s email:

I’m a little late to the party on your post about national baseball broadcasts, but I heartily agree. ESPN and Fox Sports 1 are killing baseball with commercials and worst of all, crappy announcing and color. To hear Joe Buck, that insufferable, smarmy living example of nepotism run amok, announce a Dodger game is akin to having your skin removed, layer by layer, using a rusty box grater.

Love the Gormogons!


The Dodgers-Cubs series was a wild bit of entertainment, and both teams were superb. But to Mark’s point, it almost doesn’t matter what team you like if it’s not broadcasted by your local folks. And trust us, Joe Buck is not the worst—listen to the ever-hectoring Bob Costas attempt to explain the infield fly rule to you on NBC, or the incoherent Chris Berman on ESPN lose interest in the game and start telling you about his daily grooming habits and you’d welcome box-grating exfoliation as your screams are likely to drown them out.

And yes, the Gormogons love you, too. Here’s a kitten picture to brighten your day for providing us a great headline for today’s post.

Double from the Doublewide

JAB writes in from the Doublewide in regards to this post by the Czar and GorT’s response:

In order to avoid banishment to a terribly unpleasant place, I must first agree with Your Czarness’ observation that MLB, made up “rivalries” and stupidly stupid scheduling of games have tanked viewership and interest in baseball.  And that is a pity.  I might also add that there could be some hangover from the “steroid era.”

That said…I’ll risk the wrath You Czarness and hope that Mr. GorT will intervene on my behalf.
In the interests of full disclosure, our two sons chose soccer over basketball in middle school, even though both their parents love them some hoops. Bubba-the-Larger is a goalie, and Bubba-only-Slightly-Less-Large is a defender.   And both play(ed) at a small liberal arts school in the Midwest (Div. III, meaning NO athletic scholarships are given, but they both were awarded academic scholarships, says their proud mother).
Despite my initial skepticism, I have learned to appreciate the “geometry” of the game and the fact that, unlike American football, the players on the field have to react  and read the opposing players, rather than wait for the coach to send in a play [ex.: “Red-57, whoooo”].  The other thing I admire about soccer is that the players MUST be very, very fit [the field is big and substitutions are regulated, depending on the level of play], regardless of whether they play in the EPL, college, high school, club, whatever.  Your point, Mr. GorT, about relegation/promotion is also spot-on.  At the club level in our state, it was serious, despite some of the big, important clubs engaging in conduct unbecoming from time to time.  And let me tell you, when both Bubbas’ club teams got promoted, the next open try-outs were quite crowded with kids who wanted to move up also.
However, I must confess that I find the offsides “rule” to be, if not socialist then communist, because it is a call that depends so completely on the officials’ judgement.  A player is offsides if he/she commences his run before the ball is played.  Sometimes, it is obvious, but often NOT so much.  When the TV broadcasts have to have that yellow-line-effect on the screen in replays in order to tell whether the call was correct, then the call is just tooooo arbitrary.  It has always seemed to me that it is designed to “punish” speed.  Kinda communist, you know?  Both Bubbas, being on the defensive side of play, defend the rule, but I think it should be more clear-cut.  Basketball, for instance, prevents parking a 7’ center under the basket by a strict time-count.
Just a thought!
Yours from the Doublewide, JAB
Thanks for the thought – although I think there maybe be more than one there. There are three major gripes about soccer: (1) the offsides rule, (2) flopping, and (3) the low scoring.  Let me take those in reverse.
ikedavisyawnThere are plenty of low scoring sports: hockey and baseball included.  While others may have a greater possibility of higher scoring games, it still is possible.  In 1939, the eighth longest baseball game was played between the Boston Bees* and Brooklyn Dodgers resulting in a 2-2 tie and the game was ended due to darkness** after 23 innings that took 5 hours and 15 minutes.  An MLB averages about 4.5 runs per game.  When you consider points (runs, goals) scored per minute, hockey, soccer, and baseball are all in the same ballpark.  Soccer (EPL) averages 0.02 points per minute, Hockey (NHL) about 0.037 points per minute, and baseball (MLB) about 0.04 points per minute.
304972e80333f1acb194a5f74c1bf5a61Flopping. Look it is the blemish that soccer can’t avoid. It’s terrible. A good referee will dismiss it and a great referee will card the player for flopping. The problem being that, at the speed of the game, the referee has a split second to decide whether it was a real foul or a flop and that gets hard. But yes, there’s no avoiding the face that flopping and all the acting and feigned injuries detracts from the sport.
Four offside players is a bit extreme

Four offside players is a bit extreme

Offsides. To poke at JAB’s definition, offsides isn’t when the player commences a run before the ball is played.  It is determined if the player is ahead (offensively) of the last defender when the ball is played.  The player can start a run behind the defender and work to time it so the ball is played before passing the last defender.  Speed and teamwork are actually rewarded in the sense of the play continues and this generally leads to a great scoring opportunity. The strategy that goes into both sides of this isn’t something to discount. Should our team play a “high line”*** figuring that our defenders can handle any breakaways and through-balls? Should we play “soft” or “deep” and give up field position because the offense is quicker and we can’t pace them on breakaways? Yes, it’s hard to determine because frequently the referee needs to determine AT THE TIME of the ball being played was the lead offensive player beyond the final defender.  A good assistant referee (AR) will handle that for you…but if the distance from the ball to the spot of the last defender is large, it is really hard to call. And it can be that call that determines a game based on the outcome of the play.

In the end, I think these discussions can be like politics where no one really changes their point of view. However, I hope that people learn to appreciate each sport in its own right.
* later to become the Atlanta Braves
** This was before lights were added to stadiums. “Darkness” was considered under the weather effects that could end games
*** A high line means that you play your defenders up or on the midfield line in soccer. The “highest” point in the defensive half where offsides can begin. This effectively reduces the field they have to work with to half. However, if the other team has better speed, it’s a long race down towards the goal that frequently the offensive player wins giving them the one-on-one with the goalie

Strike Out

Fight!From time to time, there are disagreements in the Castle.  One such topic that generates this is the whole baseball and soccer talk.  The Czar recently posted a interesting read – which I agree with in parts – but take exception with some.

He’s not one of those Euro-weenies who are into soccer, and who get all aggressive about it because they don’t want to admit, yeah, soccer is a little socialist like nationalised healthcare or French restaurants. It just amuses the Czar that the criticisms soccer fans level against baseball are total Freudian transference because the same criticisms work so well against soccer.

Let’s take this apart.  First, I’m not a “Euro-weenie” either and I don’t get into soccer to point of being aggressive about it, but I don’t quite see how the sport is “socialist”.  Soccer clubs are owned by investors (groups or individuals) and have heavy sponsorship.  Baseball teams are likewise owned by investors – although the sponsorship doesn’t extend to the uniforms in the MLB as it does in the EPL* and elsewhere in soccer.  I’d poke at the Czar for being kind of a Euro-weenie by spelling “nationalized” with an “s” but that might be too easy.  Others have argued that because the national teams (i.e. England, Spain, Argentina, etc.) are the teams to cheer on, the sport is socialist.  Um, no. That’s called nationalism.  Americans don’t have it as our country is on par with the size of Europe, so a better comparison is with state or regional teams in the U.S.  Ever hear of rooting for your local NFL franchise? Or maybe your local baseball franchise – it’s regionally based…much like countries in Europe.  They’ll also point at the offside rule but it’s a critically strategic rule.  Other sports (American football, Hockey) have offsides rules and no, the soccer offsides is not like disallowing the “bomb” in football.  Soccer has that same play – it’s called a “through ball”.

Maybe most telling is the matter of factness on how the EPL manages the league.  The worst three teams get relegated to a lower league and the top three (via various means depending on the level) are promoted to a higher league.  It rewards success.  Baseball rewards the worst team by giving it the first pick in the following draft.  Isn’t that more socialistic? Try to make it all fair by balancing out the talent?

I’m not denying that baseball is an incredible head-game of a sport.  There are lots of intricate moves as the Czar describes.  While I would not claim a 10-to-13-way chess (it’s two teams playing so it’s just chess…with lots of piece that you move around…the individuals are working together (hopefully) as a team to defeat the opponent), I admire all the details within a game.  This exists in soccer as well, it just manifests itself differently.  Watch a game and you’ll see teams probe different parts of the opponent’s defense, they’ll see if they can beat a certain defender on speed by getting a good through ball behind them, or they modify their field positions to exert more or less offense as deemed necessary.  This is, in fact, where most people don’t get why Hope Solo’s comments about the Swedish team in the Olympics were so wrong – they weren’t playing “cowardly”…their coach and team had a well thought out plan on how to deal with the aggressive American attack.  Much like a baseball coach would have a plan on how to pitch to a certain team.

lacrosse-youth-21-1024x683I would agree with most of the rest of the Czar’s post but would offer the following: what is killing baseball isn’t the networks, it’s other sports.  Back when the Gormogons were in school most high schools had the big three sports: football, basketball, and baseball.  If they had soccer, it was a second class citizen. Forget the other sports like tennis, volleyball, etc. as they all took backseats to these sports.  These were the ones that the “jocks” played.  The rest weren’t the “cool” sports. Then lacrosse and rugby started creeping in and soccer kept growing in popularity.  Additional national focus on the US Women’s and Men’s soccer teams aided it. At least here in the mid-atlantic, boys are largely focused on two sports: football in the fall and lacrosse in the spring.  Lacrosse has unseated baseball.  My son did baseball for a few years in grade school stopping the first year of kid-pitch (usually a painful year).  During the early part of that he tried lacrosse, but two factors killed it: (1) it clearly isn’t his sport – he couldn’t wrap his head around it as an eight-year-old** and (2) he started a year late***.  I think the general perception to those not invested in baseball is that it’s slow with lots of standing around – go research the “average distance covered by athletes in sports”.  Yes, the third baseman will cheat in (measured by a few feet) or the center fielder will shade over to one side…maybe by a few yards.  Especially when you see kids running around in lacrosse, football, and yes, soccer.

So don’t bash soccer to bemoan problems with baseball when there are other issues to address.  It’s a sport that also includes strategy.


* English Premier League for those not in the know.  Several Gormogons follow teams there including Hull City and Tottenham Hotspur.

** It’s incredible that at 8 years old we’re so focused on a sport like what I witnessed

*** Again, incredible that he was being outpaced by 7-year olds.  Given, he’s not overly athletic but it was clear that missing a year or two definitely can set one back


National Passed Time

Believe it or not, this sort of play happens a lot during baseball. You wouldn't know because the networks want to kill the game.

Believe it or not, this sort of play happens a lot during baseball. You wouldn’t know because the networks want to kill the game.

The Czar likes baseball and he’s not alone. He’s not one of those Euro-weenies who are into soccer, and who get all aggressive about it because they don’t want to admit, yeah, soccer is a little socialist like nationalised healthcare or French restaurants. It just amuses the Czar that the criticisms soccer fans level against baseball are total Freudian transference because the same criticisms work so well against soccer.

If you’re a smart enough person, you recognize that what happens between pitches is just as interesting as what happens during and after. Players and coaches read subtle signs from the batters, who adjust their positions carefully; batters spot these set ups and change their swing to counter them, and the whole thing is like 10-to-13-way chess. Secret signals go out from both benches, warning a fielder to expect a fly ball, and warning the batter not to swing at this next pitch.

Playing helps: if you played the game, you see all this stuff on the field or on television. The way a batter positions his feet tells you which way the ball will come, and you notice the third baseman creep a little closer in and you know why. It’s also fun looking at the pitch count and anticipating what type of pitch is likely to come the batter’s way.

Baseball, if you didn’t know, used to be insanely popular in the United States: kids raced home from (or skipped) school to play it in a field, moms and dads used to sneak out of work to watch a game. if not, you certainly listened on the radio or watched television to learn what the legends of the day were doing against each other. People talked about games like they talked about a family brawl: you remember that time when…? Baseball was inescapable.

It’s starting to come back, although very slowly. Over-commercialization killed baseball in the 1970s and 1980s, and player scandals and monstrous mismanagement in the 1990s and 2000s reduced the game’s popularity further. But little by little, as America feels itself disconnected from its politics and its religions—and as basketball and football lose fans to the same issues—baseball’s popularity is going back up.

Many folks disagree: attendance at games is still way down, but that’s hardly a surprise when a last-place team is charging outrageous prices for parking, behind-column seating, and low-grade food. Even a moderately cold, rapidly poured domestic beer can run you $9, especially with a chunk of that going to the local city tax collector.

Also, viewership is way down on television, but that is accounting for the millions who still listen in the background on radio while doing yardwork or the trendy kids we see watching the game in a web browser. Still and all, there is a possible culprit in how baseball is telecast.

The best games, without question, is watching your favorite team on a local television channel, presented by people who know the game and know the team. To put it another way, one of the things that makes baseball awfully boring are national broadcasts.

ESPN is the worst; their utter disdain for the game of baseball positively drips. Announces who never played the game stall for time by reading meaningless statistics about players they don’t know at all. Consider:

Local Play-by-Player: Walker throws in, low and inside. Homer looked at it, but expected the breaking ball.

Local Color Commentator: That’s right, Glen. It’s 3-1, and Walker knew Homer would want to swing away with only one strike on him. I’d expect a fast ball here, hoping to trick him. Hey, that kid in the upper deck just threw up over the railing! Can we get a camera on the folks sitting below?

Versus this:

ESPN Play-by-Player: Walker delivers a 101-mile-an-hour pitch. Homer takes it as a ball, which is the 4th time he’s done so today. This season, he’s batting only .103 in a 2-1 count, versus last season where he was over .264.

ESPN Color Commentator: That’s right, Glen. I spoke to Walker last time he pitched, and he remarked that the great Ed Fornsby, who last played in 1911, met his father at a breakfast place in Gondor, Tennessee, where he always ordered the eggs over easy. Fornsby learned from his dad that consistency makes for better pitching, which is why the late, great Reddy Hemslow always ordered eggs no matter where he went.

The Czar knows that if you’ve listened to ESPN, Fox Sports, or NBC Sports in the last 10 years, you know that’s dead-on accurate. It’s the same crap on a continuous loop. No one cares. In every national game, you are guaranteed the following:

  1. Ridiculously uninteresting statistics that reveal nothing about the play.
  2. Little substantive explanation regarding strategy or tactics.
  3. Stories about the past that are uninteresting, unrelated, and little more than name-dropping to make the color commentator sound like he was there, man, in the trenches.
  4. Some bonehead gaffe that reveals the guys know jack about the teams. During last night’s Giants/Cubs game, the Fox Sports commentator did not know the difference between legendary Cubs broadcaster Harry Caray and comedian/game show host Drew Carey. Seriously. Blowing basic trivia like this exposes you all as frauds and sickens the audience.
  5. Non-existent rivalries being amped up as the match of the century. Every game is presented as a Great Rivalry. Folks, there aren’t many in baseball. When Fox Sports, in particular, tries to convince us that the Rockies-Nationals game is a battle between these two great rivals, we shrug and change the channel. It’s awful salesmanship. Any baseball fan can rattle off the six or seven rivalries in baseball: we don’t need to be sold on the Yankees/Rays as a long-standing hatred.
  6. Mind-bogglingly weird start times that go way too late. Play to the home crowd and broadcast these games at a reasonable time. Kids in Orlando aren’t going to stay up until 3:00am to watch the Mariners play the Rays. Let the Mariners host the Rays at an afternoon game so both coasts can watch. It’s pretty simple, really.
  7. Endless delays and commercial breaks. A baseball game used to take two hours and change to play. They’re now stretched to over three with commercials, and the season stretches from March to November. Cut us all some slack. Breaks between half-innings should only be 1 minute at most to change sides, and lengthy time-outs for commercials need to be stopped. At most, if not all, baseball fields now, there’s a clock ticking down for the umpires visible to tell them how long to stretch out the time outs until the commercials end. Really. Oh, and go back to a mid-April-to-mid-October schedule.

Baseball isn’t intrinsically boring. It’s been transformed into a boring game by national networks who milked it to death. Let’s go back to local coverage, with the ability for non-local fans to watch around the globe via the internet. Without interruption at a nice pace. You know: exactly what the Czar recommends for the Olympics. National Networks are killing sports…especially ones they don’t like.

Running for Precedent

The Czar presumes it’s too early to announce eight full years of Hillary Clinton’s oppression as president, but doesn’t see much alternative after this weekend. The Czar, unfortunately, was unable to see last night’s debate as he was attending a vigil for a little girl killed over the weekend by a drunk driver; the Czar knows her dad pretty well and felt this was far more important than a debate that will win over nobody. Plus, he also caught the Blue Jays/Rangers game which proved to be surprising.

The Czar has completely written off the idea of a Trump victory, and finds all counter-evidence either grasps at straws or some tough sophistry. Destiny has decided that the American people need a good freaking lesson, and we’re about to get one.

That started this weekend: the American people got to hear over and over again how Donald Trump is not presidential material. The Czar agrees, of course, but maintains we haven’t had an ideal president since Calvin Coolidge. Maybe Eisenhower. Even Reagan had his weaknesses when trusting Democrats.

So who is fit to be president? Based on the precedents of the Democrats, it’s interesting to note what a Republican president is allowed to do.

  • You can of course use the IRS to harass if not destroy individuals or groups who aren’t in your party.
  • Fast and Furious taught us a president may allow the deaths of Mexicans and Americans in order to gin up support for or against a political idea.
  • You can start wars in more theaters than your predecessor, and drone people without due process. That’s handy.
  • You can fly to an airport to meet with Department of Justice personnel in order to get investigations dropped against family members.
  • You can totally lie about the aims of a government industry takeover, and then when it screws up exactly as predicted by your opponents, dismiss that criticism as anti-Americanism.
  • When you screw the pooch on a major international event, you pick some random YouTube film maker and illegally arrest him for a long period of time, with no explanation, for something he did years earlier.
  • Apparently, you can ignore government security classifications on emails because they’re inconvenient to your personal shopping staff.
  • You can bypass Congress by self-funding government programs that carry out your political wishes. Self-funding is as easy as fining the crap out of businesses who don’t support your campaign for regulations you pass in secret.
  • Don’t forget you can issue an executive order for anything you want, rescinding it only when the Supreme Court gets around to finding it unconstitutional; by then, the deed was done and you need merely dismiss the harm it caused as “old news.”
  • You can, of course, select which laws you want to enforce. This could be really helpful: you could easily issue a look-the-other-way order for anyone failing to register a concealed handgun, sabotaging an abortion clinic, or paying a capital gains tax.

So we’ve seen the type of person the Democrats think is allowable as president, and quite frankly, we’re not sure this prevents Trump, some homeless guy, or a paranoid schizophrenic from being president. Or in Gary Johnson’s case, all three.

Don’t forget to vote in November!

Hey, what happens if we all write in Michael Pence?

A Letter and a Rant

Dear Sovereign Czar,

I am sorry for not asking about the Цесаревич’s election. I request that my punishment be made in the form of eating re-heated frozen burritos. The cheap kind, too.

On a side note, did you see that the Catholic diocese of Arlington is getting a new bishop? It sounds like he’s a good one, too, who might even shake things up around D.C. a little.

Lukewarm regards,

Your disappointing operative
j s

You already ate those burritos, didn’t you? Even before the Czar ordered you. Even before you volunteered to do so as punishment, didn’t you? Well, very well…especially if they were the bean and cheese kind. Those are so perfect around 10:00pm.

Alas, we haven’t been following the Diocese of Arlington, and the Czar will defer to GorT in the event his roboticness has any thoughts on this that don’t involve return type subroutines.

The Czar does want to comment on a particularly irksome aspect of Catholicism, and he is aware this is a bit of a sore subject with Ghettoputer as well: Roman Catholics supporting the Democrats.

Look, we get that you hate Trump. You have excellent reasons to do so. But there seems to be a massive amount of Catholics who support the Democrats at every election. Let the Czar put it simply: the Democratic party is almost completely incompatible with the Catholic faith. You can’t be a nominal Catholic and support Democrats, especially since the national level has established anti-Catholic principles.

Yes, abortion most notably. There is a word for pro-choice Catholics: Presbyterians. There are no allowances in Catholicism for the murder of unborn children. You know this. But many of us are turning a deaf ear to the Democratic party’s utter embrace of abortion, and are encouraging its members to “shout” about theirs as a form of encouragement to young women having second thoughts.

But also there’s subsidiarity: the idea that charity begins at home, locally. The Church is not particularly pleased with welfare and government handouts. That’s your job, not theirs.

Euthanasia is the next big thing. Forcing churches to perform gay marriages is another. We can go on and on—these are not just things Democrats are okay with: they are stipulated platform issues.

Let us say it again: if you are Catholic, you cannot support Democrats. If you are a Democrat, Senator Kaine, you cannot call yourself Catholic. It’s that simple. And sure, if you don’t like it, you can simply not vote. But Catholic democrats have lost control over their party, and if you want a way out of your moral dilemma, it’s easy: pick one, or don’t vote at all. The latter may help you sleep better at night, and if enough of you stop voting, the Democrats will change. They have to: they need any edge they can.

Sorry, j s; this isn’t directed at you, of course. But you provoked a good rant.


vpdebateThe vice-presidential debate was certainly better—and more substantive—than the Caddyshack St. Andrew’s dinner dance scene that preceded it. But it won’t make any difference. It’s doubtful anyone on the fence will suddenly switch to supporting Hillary Clinton after watching Sen. Tim Kaine attempt to be a sniveling toady when he isn’t one at heart. It’s possible that a few fence-sitters might, though, be willing to vote for Trump after seeing the organized, confident delivery of Gov. Mike Pence…but the Czar doubts it.

The Czar would feel very comfortable with Mike Pence as President of the United States, God forbid such a crisis should occur. During the debtate last night, Gov. Pence had the steely glare of a sharp business executive or a retired Lt. General, measuring his words and answering succinctly with a calm demeanor. He genuinely looked presidential.

Beyond that, there isn’t much more to tell about last night’s vice-presidential debate that would make the slightest difference. Sen. Tim Kaine did his best to look like a Joe Biden-esque jackass interruptus, and you could see deep down he’s a basically nice guy being forced to act like a bully. He did so very badly, and his every interruption made him look weaker and more afraid of whatever he’s got himself into.

Of course, Kaine almost certainly will be our next Vice-President, and the Czar would prefer him as President over Hillary Clinton should Clinton’s health require him to step in. And given that President Donald Trump would, probably by March, decide he’d rather take a ride in a cool, fast speedboat than be President, the country would definitely be okay under President Pence. He’s even got a good presidential name.

So while it was enjoyable to watch Pence be who he is and Kaine attempt to be someone he isn’t, this debate wasn’t worth spit: we’re still left with two disastrous candidates, neither of whom remotely deserve the appellation of candidate, let alone the actual title of President.

A word, though, on media bias. Our moderator last night did a horrible job actually moderating, but she did ask each candidate some very embarrassing questions. We felt the number of rough questions was equally distributed—but that doesn’t matter either since all the candidates did was ignore them and talk about what they wanted to hear.

Nevertheless, it was positively chilling to hear Sen. Kaine parrot the media talking points: Trump’s tax payments weren’t “fair,” that Republicans are trying to end women’s health rights, and that Republicans only want to eliminate the middle class. Kaine spoke these and other pet phrases as if the audience automatically believes them. Pence refused to take any of this bait, and simply chuckled, rolled his eyes, or gently shook his head—which wound up being a very effective tool for defusing them. Kaine felt safe doing this because he knows, for certain, the media will not fact check him on any of these claims; in fact, they’re going to flip these into questions for the next debate, so terrified are they of (a) President Trump and (b) the wrath of a forcibly retired Hillary Clinton.

We are one election cycle away from this sort of debate:

Republican candidate: So that’s why we believe in reducing the capital gains tax and alleviating small businesses of government regulations.

Democrat candidate: Republicans want to murder your teenage daughters.

Moderator: That’s a fair point. Why do Republicans want to murder your family?

Democrat candidate: Right in front of you!

That’s pretty close to when Joe Biden claimed Republicans want blacks enslaved again. He really did.

Look, the average American understands this now: the polls show that Americans think our media are about the worst thing ever, and it gets worse with every election. These two aspects are linked: the media are unable to hide their awful, awful bias; maybe they shouldn’t. And Kaine, who looked very much like he was reading lines off 3″ x 5″ index cards (“Trump called Mexicans rapists!” flip), showed how much Democratic candidates depend on the media not doing actual fact-checking, and turning every Democrat talking point into an accusatory question for the Republican candidates.

And it doesn’t make any difference to the voter. Just like last night’s debate won’t either.

The Way the World Works

ab32cafddcfd0d7d294738a660221cf9It’s been a bit since GorT posted anything and the Czar’s post yesterday inspired a thought and I think it actually ties in to the national disaster-of-an-election-cycle as well.

GorT’s middle child, 2-of-3, is a high school senior.  She is feisty and very self-confident that inspires others. As a freshman who knew very few of her classmates going in, she was elected the class VP and followed that up by being elected the sophomore class President. Many classmates remarked that they enjoyed the organization that her and her friend who held the corresponding President/VP role were able to deliver.  There was some class turmoil in Sophomore year and 2-of-3 wanted a break from dealing with the “drama” so she passed on running for offices her junior year and focused on schoolwork and other extracurriculars. At her school, there are both roles as class officers as well as overall school officers. 2-of-3 wanted to finish off as class President and was encouraged by friends to do so as they missed her organization. Unfortunately, the race was between three girls and one of other classmates won. As the year has started, the organization for various traditional senior events has been lacking. This culminated recently with a mixer held at the school where the tradition is that the seniors completely mock or ignore the theme picked by hosting class (I believe it was the sophomore’s event). The night before, Mrs. GorT and I could tell something was bothering her and finally got her to admit that she can’t believe that their class officers have done nothing towards organizing a presence at the dance. 2-of-3 had already planned to attend with a few friends but then she took it upon herself to add more. She asked if we were ok if a dozen or so girls came over to our house to get ready as we are conveniently located close to the school. While it was loud and chaotic with various last minute additions and the welcoming of girls who had texted 2-of-3 asking if they could join too, it was great. The night was a success for the seniors that went – they had a great time, the tradition continued, and I hope that 2-of-3 realized a truth: many times elected leaders are just figureheads that fail to actually execute.

I think this holds true in school, work, and in politics. In work, there are some nuances. You generally don’t have “elected” leaders but there are plenty of C-level executives and other managers who mail-it-in. Who just coast in their offices not really doing much. These are the ones to which I refer – not the ones who, due to experience, training, etc. have been outpaced in execution by those reporting to them (in my field, I have plenty of younger software developers who can write code in circles around me) but these leaders still work to challenge, direct, mentor, and guide those reporting to them.  In politics, I think it is most true. There are many staffers that do the brunt of the work for Congress and executive branch officials. And things still get done, almost regardless of who gets elected.

I’m proud and glad 2-of-3 just moved forward with the idea with no attempt to foist it upon the class leadership. Own it and do it. Get the job done and demonstrate how to others.

Muscovy Election Update

If she was remotely this cute and adorable, you could understand it. But she isn’t, trust us.

Thanks to all of you who asked about the Цесаревич’s student council presidential campaign. The number of candidates eventually dropped to four: the incumbent SJW, the fashion model boy who only seems to have girls as friends, the basketball girl, and the Цесаревич. We should note that the Цесаревич stipulated if he thought the other two could possibly win, he would have dropped out and rallied support behind that one.

The Czar arrived at the school on election day, and noticed kids wearing buttons, hats, and shirts supporting the SJW, and we estimate at least two hundred dollars was spent by her mom. The Czar finds it quite clear that the mom must have lost an election in Eighth Grade, and is determined that her daughter win at all costs. Another dad agreed with us, and quietly mentioned that the daughter takes all her liberal pet causes from mom. Basically, it’s mom’s presidency and the daughter is just the figurehead. Pathetic, yet completely believable.

The Цесаревич delivered an impressive speech on leadership and responsibility, winning tremendous applause. The next two candidates mumbled through their speeches and avoided any discussion of what they would do.

Finally, the SJW girl walked up to the podium, and in an utterly awful echo of Napoleon Dynamite, played a ukulele to a reworded pop song about herself.

She won, of course, because today’s parents are not doing a very good job of instilling leadership. Neither the Czar nor the Цесаревич are disappointed, really—the boy is so busy with other activities that the presidency would be one more thing keeping him at school far too late. And to be fair, the results were extremely close. He almost won, but as he turned in for the night, he said “I lost to a kid with a ukulele,” followed by a sigh.

That’s about it.

Oh, and by the way, none of you asked about this. We made that up. Punishments to follow.

A Review of the Almost Debate

Hillary looked every bit the twisted shrew matron who pretends to maintain a strict golf-club ladies social propriety while overlooking her husband fornicating outside the clubhouse picture window with the 8th hole's ball washer. It took all of her considerable denial to twitter and laugh at Trump's Al Czervik, threatening to tear down Bushwood to build condos.

Hillary looked every bit the twisted shrew matron who pretends to maintain a strict golf-club ladies social propriety while overlooking her husband fornicating outside the clubhouse picture window with the 8th hole’s ball washer. It took all of her considerable denial to twitter and laugh at Trump’s Al Czervik, threatening to tear down Bushwood to build condos.

Normally, the Czar writes up a debate review for all of those readers who were not watching it; however, from what we understand, you probably did watch it. And why not? Putting Trump against Clinton in an unscripted, unrehearsed context is a bit like NASCAR putting a Figure 8 track out there: you know things will collide, but when? And how hard?

So you saw it. If you’re with the MSM—and other democrats—you’re positively jubilant that Hillary didn’t suddenly yell out lines from The Wizard of Oz before tumbling off the stage. They’re all calling it a total victory for Hillary Clinton because she didn’t totally collapse on live TV. Whatever. So much for low expectations.

Trump fans got what they wanted—92 minutes of their hero acting like a toddler with ADD after drinking a quart of Mountain Dew. The only saving grace for them is most viewers turned off the debate while he was still largely coherent, missing his puffin-like display of frat boy machismo against her strident, harpy-like fake cackles that caused Lester Holt to bite his knuckles and slowly shake his head.

So who won? Actually, it was a tie—because neither candidate pulled in any undecided voters, of whom there could be plenty this time. Trump voters are staying with Trump; Clinton voters are staying with her. Anyone who can’t decide between the two probably elected to join the millions not voting this year.

Really, would you want to vote for a guy who relates to the common working guy based on how much property he owns in someone’s hometown? He came off like a Hamptons home owner after three martinis when he forgets the person he’s talking to is paid to sweep sand off the dock. There’s no connection with Trump, and he merely confirmed the recent poll that most of his support is predicated on his not being a Clinton.

Likewise, Clinton indicated to voters that the last 8 years have been fantastic, if you lived off the Clinton Foundation. As she talked about superior job growth, fantastic investment opportunities, and how blacks and Hispanics don’t live below the national average, the Czar pictured millions of Americans looking around them and wondering where she actually sees all this. She was completely disconnected from anything in the Northeast, Washington, or the West Coast. As far as flyover country goes, she soared right over their heads.

So who lost? America—they got to see that the entire debate was nothing more than what they’ve been seeing all along: two total morons locked in a death spiral, dragging us down with them. From the fake smiles to the eye rolls, the debate was a total waste of time. Yes, there were some enjoyable clashes, but the laughter quickly stops when you realize the joke is on you.