Thursday, February 16, 2017
Danville, Kentucky -- Folks, I do not speak Chinese. I made a point of avoiding foreign language classes during high school. Why learn how to speak like some foreigner when you could be taking shop class, learning how to build stuff with your own bare hands? Moreover, learning Chinese (or any other non-American language) is utterly unnecessary for a man like myself with no plans to leave the United States (or even the Eastern Time Zone). With jobs rapidly returning to the United States thanks to Trump, there is no longer any business rationale for learning the tongue of Middle Kingdom either.
Yet, there is one word from the Chinese language that every American should know and internalize: 危机.
This is the Chinese word for "crisis." It is composed of two characters; the character that signifies "danger" and the character that signifies "opportunity." Out of crisis comes opportunity.
Folks, the Cleveland Cavaliers are in crisis. Kevin Love blew out his knee. He will likely miss the rest of the regular season. When he returns he may be a hollow shell of himself, representing a huge question mark for the Cavaliers as they attempt to defend their NBA title. The last thing the Cavaliers need is for one of their key pieces to be hobbled as they make a push for a second consecutive NBA championship against a formidable Golden State Warriors team that has added the traitorous but highly talented Kevin Durant. The Warriors cared more about breaking regular season records than winning rings last year, but that might not be the case in 2017. The Cavaliers will need to be at full strength. They need Carmelo Anthony of the New York Knicks.
Folks, Carmelo has already replaced the injured Kevin Love on the Eastern Conference All Star team. It's time for him to take Love's spot on the Cavaliers' roster as well. You have to fight fire with fire. The Warriors think adding Durant gives them an advantage? The Cavs should re-raise by acquiring Melo, one of the league's premier scoring threats.
It makes too much sense, folks. Carmelo has played in blue states like Colorado and New York his entire career, a sad reality that has limited his potential. Playing in a hard-working red state like Ohio would be a welcome change of scenery.
Mr. Anthony is a three time Olympic gold-medalist and a patriot. He led the Syracuse Orangemen to an NCAA title en route to becoming the NCAA Tournament's "Most Outstanding Player" in 2003, a simpler year when nobody had heard of kale or quinoa. Carmelo guided his college team to a title; when Kevin Love's UCLA Bruins lost in the Final Four, he abandoned ship. I know which guy I'd rather call my teammate.
In addition, playing in Cleveland would fix many of Carmelo's chemistry issues. He would no longer be playing in the shadow of the tyrannical Phil Jackson. Jackson keeps trying to change Melo, to turn him into a player he's not. Folks, as a man who has been divorced four times, let me tell you that people are who are they are. For a relationship to work, you have to accept your partner unconditionally, faults included. If you try to change people, you'll only bring misery upon yourself. If the twice-divorced Jackson had a few more divorces under his belt, he'd probably have figured this out by now. Melo has chafed as Jackson has attempted to bully and intimidate him into changing his game by moving away from isolation plays. If Melo were traded to Cleveland, he'd no longer have anything to prove to Jackson. Indeed, Melo could escape the spotlight - the Cavaliers will always be LeBron's team.
Trading Carmelo makes sense for the Knicks as well. The injured Kevin Love will not help them much in the short term, but in the long term they will have brought a ceasefire to the Jackson-Anthony Cold War while obtaining a player that they can rebuild around. It's time for the Melo era of the Knicks to end; the Ron Baker era must now begin. By trading Carmelo, the Knicks can move past the era of constant feuding between players and the front office, and begin an era characterized by players that simply show up and do their jobs, like millions of other Americans do every day without fanfare or renown. No player better encapsulates this blue-collar lunch-pail mentality than the inveterately gritty Ron Baker, proud product of Wichita State University. By clearing their roster of high-profile tabloid characters like Anthony (and eventually the aging and ineffective Derrick Rose) the Knicks can give folks like Ron Baker the playing time they deserve and bring some heartland-raised common sense to their team in the process.
The Cavaliers and Knicks both face a crisis. The injury of Kevin Love has put the Cavaliers' title defense in grave jeopardy. The Knicks organization faces a crisis of confidence as the war between Jackson and Anthony escalates. Both sides need to remember that out of crisis comes opportunity. Make it happen, James Dolan and Dan Gilbert. Bring Carmelo to Cleveland.
Sunday, February 5, 2017
Danville, Kentucky -- Long, long, ago, in a far-off distant land called Foxborough, legend tells of a boy who rose from obscurity to become a great leader of men. A man who stood in the shadow of lesser men while serving as the backup quarterback of the Michigan Wolverines. A Michigan man who became a New England man, thrust into service after the injury of Drew Bledsoe back in that fateful 2001 NFL season. An unheralded 6th round draft pick who showed America that any man can do anything with hard work and a little luck.
Folks, I remember where I was in February of 2002, when Tom Brady and the New England Patriots faced a team from St. Louis that belonged in Los Angeles in Super Bowl XXXVI. After Bledsoe's injury, I followed Mr. Brady with a great degree of curiosity; even then, it seemed as though we were witnessing history in the making. Fast forward 15 years, several lousy trade deals and disastrous forays into nation-building in the Middle East later, and Tom Brady is on the precipice of providing a tidy bookend to an illustrious NFL career that began with an improbable Super Bowl victory all those years ago.
Tom Brady's path to Super Bowl LI, to be played tonight against the Atlanta Falcons, was not without controversy. Folks, I thought Brady was dead to me after news of the heart-breaking Deflate-Gate scandal of 2015 broke. To an uninformed outsider, it seemed as though Brady had abandoned the Michigan Man grit so central to his legend and mythos, in favor of becoming a member of the NFL aristocracy that plays by a different set of rules. But sometimes, a man must admit when he has made a mistake.
Folks, more often than not I'm right. I correctly predicted that the Kansas City Royals would emerge victorious in both the 2015 American League Championship Series and World Series. I correctly predicted the resurgence of Detroit Tigers ace Justin Verlander. I correctly predicted that Peyton Manning would lead the Denver Broncos to victory in the last Superbowl, despite the scorn I received from liberal commentators heralding the rise of Cam Newton. I correctly predicted that Donald Trump would win the 2016 election. Folks, if liberals didn't look at me like I'm some sort of neanderthal just because I enjoy a good bowl of queso at Chilis now and then, I'd already have a job at FiveThirtyEight given this pedigree and resume of correct forecasts. But I'll admit: I got Tom Brady wrong.
When the Deflate-Gate news broke, I was dumbstruck. How could the man who had authored so many Super Bowl success stories be nothing more than a liar and a crook? I even called for the man to be banned from the NFL. In retrospect, the swiftness with which I condemned Mr. Brady was uncalled for. But the mainstream media deserves its share of the blame. The media is always quick to pounce upon those who wear their political opinions on their sleeves like Mr. Brady. Crooked Roger Goodell was also quick to stack the deck against Brady by falsifying pounds-per-square-inch data, cooking the books worse than the National Park service did with Trump's historically well-attended inaugural address.
I was misled by the corrupt NFL establishment and their media toadies. But I won't be misled again. I un-apologetically predict a Tom Brady triumph tonight, on the biggest stage in all of professional sports.@wikileaks I was at Trump's inauguration! I know what I saw! --> https://t.co/6fWNZwWpb7 pic.twitter.com/OociYZHsiC— The Will To Win (@TWTWsports) January 22, 2017
Touchdown Tom has so much more to play for than the Atlanta Falcons: with his 5th Super Bowl victory, he would secure his legacy as the greatest NFL quarterback of all time. A final Super Bowl ring would be a fitting bookend to career that has spanned nearly two decades, beginning with his first Super Bowl win at age 24 and a 2017 swan song at age 39.
My unabashed admiration for Mr. Brady is no longer fashionable; the radical left is determined to politicize this Super Bowl, citing Brady's "Trump Problem." Folks, I don't know when it became a "Problem" to be on the winning team or why it is now politically incorrect to be an outspoken supporter of the President of the United States. St. Louis Cardinals slugger Stan Musial didn't get lambasted by the media for campaigning with John F. Kennedy, the man who brought us the disastrous Bay of Pigs invasion. Folks, I don't remember Steph Curry getting criticized for being an avowed supported of Marxist tyrant Barack Obama.
Nope, this is just part of the continuing double standard, a double standard that leads the media to smear good men like Brady, a double standard that keeps me unemployed while Nate Silver lives large despite an awful track record of predictions. It turns out that in the world of sports, only liberals are allowed to express their political opinions.
The Atlanta Falcons really have nothing on the Patriots. Teams from Atlanta can't win; it probably has something to do with lingering humiliation over Sherman's March. Just ask the Atlanta Braves: perennial regular season champs, permanent postseason losers. I have no respect for the city of Atlanta ever since my wife deserted me at The Varsity drive-in restaurant, taking my kids, my car, and my collection of Bon Jovi cassettes with her. Matt Ryan, aka "Matty Ice," is a Boston College educated elitist who has never known the crisp taste of "Natty Ice," a drink of the people.
Super Bowl LI has become more than a football game. It is now a referendum on Trump's America writ large. The stakes are high: this game will decide the fate of both Tom Brady and Donald Trump's legacies. This Super Bowl presents the nation with an easy choice: a New England Patriots win will be yet another victory for the still-young Trump administration, imbuing further momentum in Donald's efforts to Make America Great Again. An Atlanta Falcons win would be a catastrophic setback, imperiling Trump's efforts to repeal and replace Obamacare, secure our borders, and reverse globalization. Tom Brady's journey to legend status began some 15 years ago. It's ending has not yet been written. Tonight, Mr. Brady will not only deliver a win for the New England Patriots; America itself will be taught a valuable lesson on how to win with class and dignity. That should cause every loyal American patriot's heart to inflate with pride.
Thursday, February 2, 2017
Danville, Kentucky -- For several fruitful centuries, the lumber industry was a vital driver of economic prosperity and job growth in the nascent American colonies. When the English settlers landed in the New World, they encountered massive forests full of fresh timber, begging to be logged and used as the raw material for houses, furniture, and sturdy wooden paddles perfect for disciplining an unruly child. The lumber industry was the lifeblood of the newly independent American nation's economy; millions of feet worth of timber were exported each year, providing bountiful profit to industrious loggers and millers while employing thousands of honest Americans. A man could make a dignified living by going out into the woods and communing with nature before harvesting the mighty oak, elm, and pine trees of America's forests.
But somewhere along the line, something went wrong. The sawmills of old were shut down, no longer churning out freshly-hewn logs at their once prolific rate. Many an ax became dull and rusty as it fell into idleness and disuse. The stout lumberjacks of old were forced to leave this once proud industry for other jobs. The sounds of swinging axes and slicing saws in the forests became anachronistic and rare.
Why did the logging industry suffer such a precipitous decline? Some would say overbearing big government regulations. Some would say NAFTA. Some would blame tree-hugging environmentalists, with their shrill shrieking about "deforestation" and "irreversible ecosystem collapse culminating in devastating loss of biodiversity." They all have a point. But the true culprit was much more sinister: college education.
Somewhere around the 1960s, American men went soft. They stopped going out into the woods to appreciate its sights, sounds, and smells: the tarry trickle of sticky maple sap, the sound of wind whispering through leaves, the feel of dirt and bark in one's fingers. They went to college instead. Economists heralded the advent of a "consumer" economy rather than a production-oriented economy.
Look where college education has gotten us, folks.
Kids these days don't make anything with their hands like greater generations of Americans once did. They'll never know the smooth touch of a well-crafted ax in one's fingers, and the feeling of power that toppling a majestic tree brings. College educated snowflake brats don't know what it feels like to make something, to produce something. They only know how to riot and destroy whenever they encounter somebody who disagrees with them.
President Trump is exactly right to demand that our college campuses protect free speech while remaining riot-free. Instead of funding some rebellious urchin's Art History degree, why not put our taxpayer dollars to better use? All that money could be better spent building The Wall, investigating Rafael Cruz, or invading the crime-ridden scum-hole of Chicago.If U.C. Berkeley does not allow free speech and practices violence on innocent people with a different point of view - NO FEDERAL FUNDS?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 2, 2017
These days, a college degree isn't worth much. So many kids can't find jobs after graduating college, and find themselves eternally burdened with student loans. We could use big government socialist loan bailouts to fix this problem, as Bernie Sanders has suggested. Or we could teach America's youth a valuable lesson in diligence.
The President should immediately de-fund Berkeley and similarly riotous universities. Instead, this money should be devoted to the logging industry, to encourage timber companies to hire America's youth in their lumber and sawmill operations. Teach America's youth how to produce, rather than teaching them how to riot and destroy. The best way to get America's youth off the streets is to get them back in the forests, harvesting our nation's glorious wooden bounty.
WH briefing— Bradd Jaffy (@BraddJaffy) February 1, 2017
Spicer: “I want to go to my 3rd Skype seat: Lars Larson of the Lars Larson show.”
Lars: “Commander Spicer, it's a pleasure...” pic.twitter.com/CixxjU7wgk