Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Politics in the Sports Pages

Phil Sheridan has a nice insight about the state of our politics in today's Philadelphia Inquirer (registration required). Pithy, world-shattering, no. But it is interesting when politics bleeds over into the sports columns. Perhaps it is a sign of gathering momentum. His subject, nominally, is the steroid scandal in baseball:

You've heard all the arguments against the scheduled congressional hearing. It's a dog-and-pony show. It's really a chance for a bunch of politicians to grandstand. Congress has more important issues to deal with.

Frankly, the less time this Congress spends dealing with issues such as the deficit and Social Security, the better.

Sheridan gets it. But what he doesn't say is what might be bigger news, that our lawmakers are running for the cover of the latest scandal du jour in order to hide not just from doing real work, but also in order to hide from the Bush agenda. While these dimwits face off against steroid bloated athletes and owners who looked the other way, they are not talking about a Marriage Amendment or the Iraq War, and they are allowing Bush's Social Security Privatization Plan to gather dust on the shelf. Why? With each issue there is danger, and especially to Republicans.

Try this next quote from the same article on for size.

Baseball doesn't want it to happen. The more commissioner Bud Selig and company kick and scream and try to hide, the more you should be in favor of this hearing.

Boil Selig's argument down to its essence: Because Major League Baseball has a steroid policy now, only the present and future should matter. There is no point, Selig says, in looking into the past.

Apply that logic and no one would ever go on trial for anything. The past doesn't matter! So what if some people got killed, or some money went missing! All that counts is the future!

If the names and issues were changed there, we could easily think Sheridan were describing a current scandal in the Bush Administration. Abu Ghraib? Plame? Could it even be that replacing Selig's name with Santorum that the quote could also cover his real estate relationship and theft of money from the Penn Hills School District? I think so.

Keep watching the sports columns, folks, and you'll get an indication of how disgusted people are becoming about the Republicans.

Incidently, Mr. Bush was the owner of the Texas Rangers during the beginning of this scandal. I wonder why he's not been subpoenaed.