Friday, December 12, 2008
Sorry for the quality but it's worthwhile to watch if you havn't seen it already. I like how Plax gets consecutive mentions pretty casually and how A-Rod gets 2 as well. The second commandment is probably the best though.
No. But ultimately yes.
The U.S. Auto Industry, the "Big 3" has been working an inefficient system while attempting to stay in contention with "foreign" automobile manufacturers and now want money to bail them out? It would be ridiculous were it not so sad. Yes, I am aware that the Big 3 employs over 200,000 employees. However, it is simply the nature of the market.
The Big 3 has been hesitant to change in more than one form. They have been holding to the ideal that during a time when consumers have less money than ever, they will want to let alone be able to buy gas guzzlers like the GMC Yukon or the Ford Excursion, not to mention the ridiculous amount of wasteful trucks. There is a reason why Toyota and Honda are so successful. It is that their primary focus is on the car and the mid size SUV with a mini van mixed in, to provide the needs while giving flexibility in terms of fuel and features. Furthermore, even Al Gore noted that it was unfortunate that the Big 3 had essentially give Toyota a strong foothold in the last 7-8 years by allowing the Toyota Prius to corner the market. Hell, even in today's economic crisis, where some GM dealers are offering buy one get one car sales, the price for the Prius has been marked up by dealers.
Furthermore, the labor union and management should be blamed for the current situation as well. The Big 3 fail to realize that they need to restructure benefits packages such as virtually every other industry has done. One of the sticking points of the latest bailout proposal has been that the Big 3 and the associated labor unions were not willing to accept competitive pay with the U.S. workers for the foreign employers, employ over 110,000 Americans, but are paid 3-4 dollars less, while still being paid reasonably.
Detroit is having a bad year. The Lions suck. The Pistons gave away their heart and soul and now are sucky. The Indians will suck after Kerry Wood messes up his elbow after a week of spring training. Detroit needs something, and if those financial firms whose actions were just as egregious were given a 700 bil bailout, it seems that the automakers should get one as well.
Thursday, December 11, 2008
The reason of this post is to note a philosophical shift for this blog. Since I could just as well be reading and commenting on a billion other blogs that would serve the same purpose as this, I have decided that I would like this to be a bit different.
Thus, I am throwing away the conventional wisdom that one should not mix sports and politics and I will even add some philosophy to this concoction. Hopefully, this blog will serve to be both informative and/or pointless while being thought provoking on a variety of topics. For what is that which you read to serve but as nourishment for the mind.
Tuesday, August 12, 2008
[Required Reading: Matt's last post on the matter that links to all posts that matter]
It's a bit like getting an Ace and 10 and be left wanting an Ace and a Jack. Thus is a bit like what I feel is happening after US defeated Angola by "only" 21. Before I get to some of the more nuanced part of the argument, I would like to take a topical approach at this. A possible way to look at this victory is that even though the U.S. played quite poorly, they won by 21. Sure they didn't shoot the three well, but why does it matter? It matters because U.S. wont be able to do the press and run defense/offense against good teams? Well, exactly WHO has or will stopped the U.S. from doing generally whatever they want? Greece? They looked simply awful against Spain and looked good against an inexperienced German team that already has a relatively weak backcourt and had a Caveman trying to play point. Spain? Ricky Rubio isn't exactly Jose Calderon and is prone to giving up the ball, especially when he'll probably be matched up with CP3. Furthermore, do we really expect the most complete player in the world to continue shooting .069 from the three point line? I for one do not. And for those calling for more Redd, its not like he's lighting up the building either. Yes, I know he is the designated "zone buster" but Tayshaun Prince and Kobe has made about the same amount (give or take one or two 3s) of non garbage 3s as Redd has made. I thought the purpose of most bloggers was to get through the misconceptions? If so how is one not a hypocrite for being harshly critical of someone like Jason Kidd but not on Redd if he is not performing? Granted, the sample size is small, but you get the idea. Also, I'd like to note that some players, namely Kobe Bryant, are not showing much energy on the defensive end, a trend that should change once the U.S. starts playing higher profile opponents.
As for 2006, experience cant be undervalued. FIBA IS different than the NBA and quite honestly, as the players themselves would admit, they are a lot more comfortable now than they have ever been. This has been helping their defense, in moreso than allowing them to grab the ball off the top of the rim, as they have found a comfort zone defensively in increasing their aggressiveness especially in curbing rolls to the basket. It would look better on paper and to watch if the U.S. were hitting their threes. That much, I will grant. However, that is not enough to start like its the day after the semi finals of the 2006 World Championships.
Perhaps it is time to simply relax.