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America has Lost its Mind

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That should be the title about how how Americans can't afford an $1000 expense.

This article is going to be emotional and strongly worded, so if you arrived here for a daily dose of personal finance take that link and run... or just close your browser window. I'd for you to come back tomorrow.

I couldn't look either of my sons in the eyes today. I tried. At the ages of 1 and 2, they knew something was "different", but they didn't know what.

Jake, my dog, gave me a kiss. When he was puppy, I got kisses regularly. Now he doles them out... as necessary.

It was necessary today.

I got my sons dressed. The youngest hasn't developed a passion for fashion. The oldest is very picky about wearing a dinosaur, an octopus, or a robot. Today we'd wear "star man" and we'd count... "one... two..."

At first he didn't understand, but today it was important that we all "matched." Even "Bubba" (his name for his younger brother) "matched."

When I brought the kids into day care, I was greeted with the words, "Well played." For the first time in 12 hours I cracked something resembling a smile. She didn't know it, but that's a catch-phrase of one of my best friends.


I am very lucky, my kids are very, very young... I don't need to explain it. They don't even know it happened. They'll surely ask me about it later. Later is great... I hope to have answers then. My heart goes out to all the mothers and fathers of 8-10 year olds today.

I've danced around the "it" for long enough.

"It" is the end of competitive sports.

I love competitive sports. No blogger ever harnessed their adrenaline to say, "In your face!" My wife, as a pharmacist, doesn't have those moments either.

Sports gives us that. Or at least it did...

Today competitive sports died... and a judicial system died with it...

I don't know how to explain to my sons that Tom Brady was suspended for suspected cheating.

How do I say:

It was a witch hunt to cover up the sting operation which lead to a biased "investigator" to ignore evidence to conclude that some part-time Patriot employee might have done something that they think Tom Brady might have been aware of?

I hoped to cover all this in this article, but I am too emotionally drained to do it now... I'm going to instead link to and quote relevant material to back it up.

First there are many reasons why Tom Brady should not have been suspended.

The bulk of what this article should have been about is this from Mike Reiss:

Why do I think this has been made to be a bigger deal than it is? I go back to the Vikings-Panthers game from November, with teams illegally heating footballs on the sideline and simply getting a warning from the NFL, and wonder how we got to this point with the Patriots and underinflated footballs. I go back to the Chargers using an illegal sticky substance on towels in 2012 and getting fined $25,000, and likewise wonder how we got to this point with the Patriots and underinflated footballs. Put the three situations together and only one requires a full-fledged investigation that will cost owners millions of dollars? In the interest of fairness, what am I missing? Add in comments from Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers about his preference for overinflated footballs, and this New York Times story on Eli Manning and his football preparation, and it just seems we've gone off the rails here.

And these two things were before the penalty came down. I have 23 browser tabs open about that.

I know some people will say that I'm a homer.

I'm fine with explaining cheating itself to my kids. I was Mark McGwire's biggest fan. I may one of the biggest baseball card collections of him in New England... but I stopped collecting in 1993. This was long before the home run records or steroids.

That's easy to explain.

I can't explain a ruling based on the lack of evidence... I can't explain how we penalize someone for what they were "generally aware of" when there is no definitive truth that it happened.

I have no answers when they ask:

"Wasn't this the guy who suspended Ray Rice for only two games for knocking his girlfriend unconscious in an elevator? Is being suspected for something really worse than that daddy?"
"Wasn't this the guy who gave a warning when teams illegally warmed up balls? What's different here daddy?"

I'm not saying that sports personalities should be role models, but let's be honest... they are. It's part of being famous. If there is one sports personality you'd want your kids to emulate, wouldn't it be Tom Brady? You may not have the best talent... you get drafted in the 6th round... you work hard and it results in unparalleled success... you make millions and marry a super model...

The NFL wants to end this story with (paraphrased), "and we think he might have talked with someone who might have done something that we aren't sure of... hence he's guilty."

This is the same league that is getting hammered from health advocates about concussions. It is the same league that spent the last year explaining the domestic violence issues (which is nothing new in the NFL). NFL, you really want to go after the best example of sportsmanship in the game... perhaps all of sports? Wow.

Yesterday, the NFL showed that there is no justice in the world. They've essentially said, "We are the judge, jury, and executioner... and we hire the people to give us results that make us look good."

Posted on May 12, 2015.

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