A Number of Many Issues

A Number of Many Issues

By Michael-Louis Ingram, Editor


(first presented June 30,2009)


SportsPHILADELPHIA (BASN/BASN NEWSROOM) — Let’s understand this right off the bat; you don’t need a campfire, flashlight, tent or burnt marshmallows to tell a horror story — and you don’t need reality television when the analog lives of those enraged by the Machine are thrust kicking and screaming into Lie Definition…

The powers that be would have you believe the golden goose has not laid any eggs in quite a while.

Billion-dollar stadia stand like DNA helixes for their respective cities, but because they are only half full, the teams cry broke; however, if your stadium is worth less than $300 million, well, we’ll just have to take your team and move someplace where real fans can appreciate it.

After all, what good are books, teachers, doctors, nurses, roads and transportation when you can’t afford to go to the game anyhow? But for those fortunate few, every crack of the bat and swig of $9.00 beer leaves them awash in Americana;

Armed with a license to steal (seats), they prey upon your sensibilities, reminding you this is “your” team – so sell that kidney on eBay, and the right to hold your spot on line is yours. Now, about those season tickets…

And the naked arrogance of some of those so enamored by their self-importance allows them to hurl invectives at Cablanasian golfers; their long – seething resentment for his talent released as Bacchus speaks to them, offering liquid courage to ply their acid tongues.

Cue strings, please…

“Master of Puppets” Music/Lyrics by METALLICA: James Hetfield, Kirk Hammett, Jason Newsted, Lars Ulrich, Robert Trujillo; R.I.P. Cliff Burton; my favorite translation of this song is from ‘Symphony & Metallica.’

End of passion play, crumbling away I’m your source of self-destruction Veins that pump with fear, sucking darkest clear Leading on your deaths construction Taste me you will see More is all you need Dedicated to How I’m killing you…

And as MLB & NFL have the masses begging Vanna White because they cannot afford to buy a vowel, their collective Wheel of Fortune stops…on Bankrupt.

Come crawling faster. Obey your Master. Your life burns faster. Obey your Master

MASTER! Master of Puppets I’m pulling your strings, yeah Twisting your mind, smashing your dreams. Blinded by me, you can’t see a thing. Just call my name, ’cause I’ll hear you scream Master

Just call my name, ’cause I’ll hear you scream Master

MASTER! (Hell yeah!)

Hell, yeah indeed…

If it isn’t MLB Commissioner Brat Selig, who is/are the insidious bastards responsible for leaking out the names from the now infamous 2003 list of MLB players that tested positive for performance – enhancing substances?

What foul logic lurks within their collective cerebral cortex which justifies the systematic dehumanization of men that literally jeopardized their long – term health because they were told “Chicks dig the long ball,” only to casually fail to mention they would have no balls with which to dig those chicks by the time their careers were through – due to long term effects of said substances?

And the phalanx of putrid parasites who stand ready to do their Master’s bidding in the mainstream media by delivering their salvos from bully pulpits built on jealousy nine times the color green; attacking with the kind of sinister simplicity that would make Torquemada rise from the grave to buy the Crib notes…

As in setting up Vince Young by attempting to prove how stupid (in their minds) he is. First by defaming him for an entire week on the air; then having the gall to pretend to be journalists by having their designated ESPIN lackey ask Young if he felt like he wanted to kill himself in an “exclusive” interview. I’m sure someone had a good laugh at the production meeting for the show behind that…

So if you’re Sammy Sosa, 609 home runs now means you’re a lousy Spic who was a good boy for Massa Selig; but once you’re gone – because you were “a disgrace to the game” – now they can say what they want and talk themselves into several reasons (in public, of course) as to why they cannot in clear conscience allow him to enter their Hall of Fame…

And Barry Bonds’ 73 home runs in a season and the all – time homerun record only means that you’re an uppity nigger who wouldn’t allow us to make him the Face of the Steroid Problem; we will make you pay for not kowtowing to our concerns; because, as one ESPIN invertebrate said on air, “it’s over when we say it’s over.”

Needlework the way, never you betray Life of death becoming clearer Pain monopoly, ritual misery Chop your breakfast on a mirror Taste me you will see More is all you need Dedicated to How I’m fucking you

Ask Dave Pear how he’s been treated. Pear, a retired player and former nose tackle who played with a broken neck when he won his Super Bowl ring as an Oakland Raider, sees the lack of effort on the part of mainstream media to not address this as a newsworthy issue.

“Even after the lawsuit has been won, the issue of pension reform remains a legal issue that can only be resolved by having the NFL open their books in a GAO audit,” said Pear, speaking from his home in the Pacific Northwest. “Anything else is merely lip service.”

Pear cites a letter sent to him dated June 18, 2009 from NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. In a BASN Exclusive, Mr. Pear allowed us to share the text of the letter:<

Dear Former NFL Player:

On behalf of the NFL team owners and NFL management, I would like to thank you and your NFL colleagues for giving me the opportunity to meet with retired players all across our nation and listen to the issues that concern you most.

After reviewing the questions and comments raised during these forums, it was apparent to me more than anything else we need to improve communication and look at new ways of working together to address the problems that face many retired problems. Together, I am confident we can implement a game plan to tackle these issues head on.

A recurring theme in my meetings with former players was the issue of representation – a vehicle through which retired players could voice their needs and concerns. It is encouraging to see that the NFL Alumni is also focusing on these issues by returning to and expanding its heritage and historic mission of supporting retired players in medical and financial need.

As an initial step, the NFL Alumni has formed an alliance with Fourth & Goal, a retired player advocacy organization. The NFL Alumni recognized that many retired players were looking for an independent organization to represent their interests and bring about the changes that are needed.

For many years, the NFL owners have provided financial assistance to the NFL Alumni and we will continue to build upon that support. I would encourage you to become a member of this organization and participate in its goal of helping retired players and communities through the “Caring for Kids” program.

As a retired NFL player, you should also be aware of the significant number of changes recently made to improve the quality of benefits available to you. Information on these benefits is available from the toll-free number and the websites listed on the enclosed page.

Sincerely, Roger Goodell

Mr. Pear’s response, which is also placed on his blog (www.DavePear.com) put the onus on the Commissioner to clarify some of his thoughts:

Dear Commissioner Goodell,

Your letter is gibberish. Did you actually write it? It starts off, “Dear Former NFL Player”? With all due respect, I agree with Irv Cross: It sounds like some sort of junk mail I would normally toss in the trash.

When are you going to make real changes and refrain from these newly-created so called benefits that offer almost nothing? The newest program being the “Player Care Foundation.” Such a fancy name. However, we continue to request access to our earned benefits we were promised so many years ago.

May I suggest pension/disability reform because you clearly DO NOT understand the issues with regard to retired players. (By the way, you ARE the Chairman of The Retirement Board and Disability Initial Claims Committee).

As the Commissioner of the NFL you must give retired players something to respect. However, this letter hurts your credibility.

Sincerely, Dave & Heidi Pear

Come crawling faster. Obey your Master. Your life burns faster. Obey your Master

MASTER! Master of Puppets I’m pulling your strings. Twisting your mind, smashing your dreams. Blinded by me, you can’t see a thing. Just call my name, ’cause I’ll hear you scream. Master


Just call my name, ’cause I’ll hear you scream Master


Retired player Marvin Cobb’s own words during a recent interview on the BASN/blogtalkradio show “The Batchelor Pad” echo Pear’s sentiments as to the depth of his own union’s (NFLPA) treachery…

“My oldest son Quentin had bought the Madden Football 2004 Edition, which has either Classic or Vintage aspects which include some of the former Super Bowl rosters.

“He tells me that on the 1981 Cincinnati Bengals team, there’s a guy with statistics exactly like me; same height and weight as in my playing days, five year veteran, went to USC – everything as if it were on the back of my football card; but different number and image.”

Master, Master, where’s the dreams that I’ve been after? Master, Master, you promised only lies. Laughter, laughter, all I hear or see is laughter. Laughter, laughter, laughing at my cries. Fix me!

Not just ‘fix me’ – fix this whole mess. Instead of just writing a check and paying off the class action suit en masse, they hang out the payments like a medicine drip, strapping the retired players in more ways than one.

This may have started over money, but where is the dignity and respect for those men who literally became the Strikeforce: Morituri for the then fledgling NFL?

Anything that does not expedite these men being able to improve their quality of life so everyone can move on…is bullshit.

Hell is worth all that, natural habitat. Just a rhyme without a reason. Never ending maze, Drift on numbered days. Now your life is out of season. I will occupy. I will help you die. I will run through you. Now I rule you too.

So before summer turns to fall, and the cliches’ are reheated, and the martial music is played and the Shield cranks out its propaganda machine in full effect, think about what is happening to these men; their wives and their families.

Think about how their own union stabbed them in the back, and don’t get it twisted about the perceived money and glamour. Anyone who’s ever worked in a union shop or toiled in states that are staunchly non – union know how funky things can get when immediate and long – term interests are betrayed by people you entrusted because many of you worked side by side with some of them…

Come crawling faster. Obey your Master. Your life burns faster. Obey your Master

MASTER! Master of Puppets I’m pulling your strings Twisting your mind, smashing your dreams, baby…Blinded by me, you can’t see a thing. Just call my name, ’cause I’ll hear you scream. Master


Just call my name, ’cause I’ll hear you scream Master


And remember that when the laughter comes from behind boardroom doors, it’s done at your expense – because they’re laughing…all the way to the bank.

(Author’s Note: At the submission of this piece, it is now officially 335 days since the U.S. Congress publicly apologized to Black folks for slavery – and still nary a syllable outside of BASN and similar sites who have touched on the subject of reparations. On July 29, the cycle of hypocrisy will have come full circle).

Always outnumbered; never outgunned.

Michael-Louis Chanticleer Ingram.


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