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Monday, December 14, 2009

Stephen Smith Jumps The Shark

I am not a mark. I do not have to give Arte a nickel; I choose to anyway, despite all the team's historic and recent flaws. Insulting, puerile, and trite -- good grief, he hauls out the "grade school teachers about $40,000 a year while we pay an athlete $9 million a year to steal bases or an actor $20 million to appear in a film" nonsense; really? How many years do grade school teachers have to prepare before they take up their chosen occupation? And what's the established talent level required to teach K-6 kids, anyway? I know some good teachers out there, but it's not like, say, medical school, which is at least as hard to get into if not harder. There are a grand total of 750 major league roster spots open, and last time I checked, a lot more physicians than that in the U.S.

Stick to your minor league analysis, Stephen.

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How many years do grade school teachers have to prepare before they take up their chosen occupation?

The relevant question is "how many people are willing to spend between $10 and $250 to watch someone teach? My sister, brother, and sister-in-law are educators, and I love them very much, but we don't pay people commensurate to some innate value they provide to society. Stephen's "argument" here has always been a ridiculous one. Perhaps he feels that the owners deserve all the extra money they'd have if we paid ballplayers like teachers.

Of course, I'm a bleeding heart liberal, so if someone wanted to, say, tax the every living shit out of athletes and put that money into schools, you wouldn't hear me complaining.
I don't know what he feels. He's become the cranky old man of the Angels' blogosphere, and every year he just gets crankier. Maybe that's because he was forced by circumstances to move to Florida, I dunno. But what I do know is pieces like this make him look like a first-rate jerk.
I suppose I should also mention that California seems to have built its tax structure on the notion that the rich are the only people who should pay taxes; the consequent discovery that the rich are not always as rich as politicians would like to portray them (i.e. their income is far more sporadic than most people's, i.e. the Google IPO is a once-in-a-lifetime event) has led to vast overspending. The notion that resources are finite is rather foreign to them. It always is.
I don't blame the politicians. I blame the idiot voters who amended the constitution such that it takes a 2/3 majority to actually raise money to pay for stuff, but the idiot electorate can just pass an initiative to spend money the state doesn't have.
I am NOT ga-ga about Gene Autry. For me G.A. stands for Garret Anderson or General Admission--not Gene Autry. Wasn't Autry a bit weak going back on pop flies? You cannot lasso a pop fly!

Take it easy on Mark! Mark was a Toronto Blue Jays season ticket holder who I met on a Bali Hash House Harriers run in Ubud, Bali, Indonesia in April 1989. Mark invited me to Toronto. I saw six Blue Jay games in Sky Dome in July 1989 right after the All-Star game. That was only six weeks after the first game in Sky Dome. I went to the only doubleheader ever played in Sky Dome. It was a Blue Jays sweep over the Angels with David "Boomer" Wells winning both games.

With his updates citing L.A. Times references Stephen Smith has a worthy article here. When I was in Torrance, California as a first grader I used to play on the Jeff Chandler Ranch (it is now a golf course) south of Crenshaw Boulevard. Jeff Chandler was my favorite childhood cowboy--not Gene Autry.
Mark? Who is Mark?
John Wayne was a cowboy. Gene Autry was a singer. I'm just saying.

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