Friday Firesmith – Who’s Telling and Who’s Selling?

Friday firesmithHere we have two very different people who are both in the news for saying some fairly stupid things. The first is Cliven Bundy, a rancher who steals from the government because he thinks it’s okay to steal from the government. The second is Donald Sterling, a billionaire who thinks anyone not actively pleasing him sexually at the given moment is something he’d rather scrape off the bottom of his Gucci sneakers.

Why does either of these surprise anyone?

Bundy has lived his life far away from civilization and most of the people you see him hanging with now are far-right-guns-everywhere-militia who are just dying to tangle with the Federal Government in some Duck Dynasty Armageddon. Let’s take a moment and recall the last time someone did that and the results of those actions. Waco Texas, comes to mind, and that’s what happens to people who piss off the Feds. Personally, I think most of what happened in Waco was murder, but that’s not the point. The idea that we the people are going to get into, and win, a firefight with the same people who buy and sell automatic weapons to drug dealers in Mexico and own most of the drones is ludicrous.

They don’t want your guns. They can kill you no matter how well you’re armed.

On the other hand, billionaires get to be where they are by making deals that absorbed a lot of cash in exchange for very little of anything. Sports are a great way to cash in on someone else’s talent and I’m more than willing to bet that there isn’t a team owner out there who wouldn’t sacrifice the health and wellbeing of everyone on that team to line his pockets. Uh, that’s what they’re doing. Proportionally, the number of men who were once professional athletes who are now dead broke are astronomically higher than those men who were once team owners and who are now broke. The number of team owners who have debilitating brain injuries or crippling knee injuries are, proportionally, much smaller than those men who actually went out and did the work.

This does not speak of a high degree of respect for one by the other.

Why would we think that a man who makes his living off other people’s bodies would be ethical? Why would we think a thief is an American Hero?  We see billionaires as gods and at the same time American culture is enthralled with ignorant hick folk who kill animals and steal for a living. Show me someone who can load up a road kill deer while half lit on homemade whiskey while drawling in front of a camera and I’ll show you the next big thing on television.

Somehow, both professional sports figures and undereducated semi-literate morons who can’t seem to let fifteen second pass without uttering the words “ain’t got no” became associated with “family values”.

I’m willing that you won’t find a duo of team owners in America who are any better than the guy who got busted. He’s not by far the worst of the lot. I’m also willing to bet that you looked at every rancher or farmer out there, you’d find a decent American home, not like that Bundy guy at all.

But as of yet, we aren’t seeing a lot of people on the news who aren’t stealing the rest of us blind in some shape, form or another. Decency doesn’t sell tickets or commercial time on television. And it ain’t what you’re buying, America.

Take Care,

Mike writes regularly at his site:  The Hickory Head Hermit

Opinions expressed in this article are not necessarily those of the management of this site.



14 thoughts on “Friday Firesmith – Who’s Telling and Who’s Selling?

  1. You are really using a broad brush when you accuse every team owner of being on Sterling’s level. Ralph Wilson, the recently deceased owner of the Bills, and the citizens of Green Bay (yes, they are the owners) come to mind.


  2. Richard, I simply don’t believe in altruistic billionaires. And even if there are some team owners who are, I’m very comfortable with my assertion that by and large you get what you see: someone who makes a living off other people getting hurt for less money. I’m not saying all of them are that way. But enough to make the stereotype work well indeed.


    • I have no problem with your follow-up comment. It is quite different than your original post in my mind.


      • Richard my point was and is you just don’t get much goodness out of breed. We ought not be surprised when an owner turns out to be a total jerk and when one isn’t, I for one am shocked.

        Except for Green Bay. Those fans rock.


  3. Let’s not conflate the Cliven Bundy issue and the Donald Sterling issue. Despite what Donald Sterling said in the intimate moments of sexual afterglow (ewww!), his only crime is being a very wealthy, worthless piece of cat excrement.

    Cliven Bundy (also a wealthy, worthless piece of cat excrement), on the other hand, has flaunted federal law and the public good. His defense relies on testicular, twisted logic and redneck demagoguery. He is a thief and all of his pals with their pathetic shotguns and rifles are co-conspirators.

    That’s just my humble opinion…


  4. Two comments.
    1) behind every great wealth there is a great crime. (A few exceptions)
    2) both these men may well be into some form of dementia.


  5. I urge you not to put too much trust in what you read. There is MUCH more to the Bundy issue than is being reported by the AP. Bundy is wrong but so is the BLM. The BLM makes its rules with no regard to people – mainly just endangered species some of which have so overpopulated designated areas they are being euthanized.
    You might look into the Grass March, the Wild Horse Roundup fiascos, or the Tombstone, AZ water issue as just a few examples of BLM flexing its muscles and exercising their almost unlimited power.


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