Results tagged ‘ Barack Obama ’

The RSBS Podcast, Episode 5: Bonilla’s Bonus Button… and Other Stuff

rsbs podcast photo 3.jpg

Click ME to Listen!!!

And so in this Podcast…

Jeff, Al & that rock-n-rollin-Cub-lovin’ sage Johanna Mahmud take on all things ‘Merica, including (but not limited to) Rinku and Dinesh, Carlos Zambrano, The Hills (seriously? that happened?), the All-Star Game, the Lou
Piniella Mailbag and much,
much more… all to make you laughy-laughy!

Holla!

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*Special

thanks to Keith Carmack — our engineer, director, editor and
all-around sound guru.  His Undercast
podcast is a must-listen (listen to it!).  It’s available on iTunes and
is posted regularly at Undercard

Films.

Recorded Monday, July 5, 2010

Merry Stras-mas!!!

Jeff and Allen Strasburg game 3.jpgBeing the unfettered baseball junkies that we are, we left the RSBS keys with the interns and headed out to Nationals Park on Friday night.  We had to see Stephen Strasburg for ourselves.

And this is what we learned:

President Obama has balls… showing up in a Sox hat

Allen hates the wave

Fair-weather Nats fans are led by a massive group of IBM consultants who can’t keep their mouths shut during the game

Allen hates IBM consultants who can’t keep their mouths shut during the
game

Stephen Strasburg’s ears ARE that big

Chili Cheese Half Smokes from Ben’s Chili Bowl = Good.  The day AFTER Chili Cheese Half Smokes from Ben’s Chili Bowl = NOT so good.

Friday night games at Nats Park always end with a kick@ss fireworks show

Allen hates fireworks

Merry Stras-mas!!!

“Daz Wha You Gonna Be!”

chicago aerial.jpgQuick! 

What’s black and blue and so p!ss drunk that it looks like a Philadelphia Flyers fan? 

If you answered the Cubs/Whitesox Crosstown Classic, then you are absolutely correct, dear reader!  Now, buy me a shot (and none of that buttery nipple nonsense; hit me with the Jameson)!

Verily, I love the Second City infighting.  Cubs.  White Sox.  Northside.  Southside.  Rotten GovernorsPresidents of the United States.  Whether both teams are playoff bound (2008) or just treading water til next April (2010), it is no secret that this intracity rivalry brings out the best — ahem — worst in human nature.

And that includes making baseball managers think they can rap.

Yep, just like last year (and the year before that), once your ears have been damaged by the following Sox/Cubs rap, the Chicago baseball bragging rights may officially be sought:

Don’t hate MC Sweet Lou and DJ Gui-licious… ‘cuz they’re right.

Happy Friday!

Jeff

Mark it Zero

In all the hullabaloo surrounding the oil spill in the gulf, the Gore’s divorce and the hopefully inevitable end to the basketball season, you might be losing track of other important happenings around the nation.  No, I’m not talking about baseball season (although that is pretty important).  Rather, I’m talking about the heating up of political rhetoric as we plow through the primary season in preparation for this fall’s midterms.

Sure, most of the hubbub is about Obama and how his policies and actions will fare with the electorate.  But let’s not forget other equally important regional races.  For instance, did you know that the Alabama Agricultural Commissioner controls 5 billion dollars?  If you didn’t before, you will after watching this:

Of course, you now also know that this guy is out of his freakin’ gourd.

You are about to enter a world of pain.

-A

Kagan at the Bat

the president stands by his White Sox, even while halfway across the country.  But now we find out that new Supreme Court nominee, Elena Kagan, has an appreciation for sport in her past as well.  However, it hasn’t come without controversy.

Tuesday’s Wall Street Journal had an old photo of Kagan playing softball on the front page which immediately led to public outcry.  Outcry?  Why, because that implies that she drinks or something?

Nope.  Instead it turns out that all female softball players are gay, a fact I wish I had been made aware of before.  Now I’m always going to wonder about that softball player I hooked up with in college.  Did she know that she was a lesbian?

Either way, we face an important moment.  No, I don’t mean the nomination of the first gay Supreme Court Justice.  Clarence Thomas already covered that.  What I mean is, what can we tell about Kagan and her policies from this picture?

Well, the first thing we notice is that she’s a righty.  I guess she could be a switch-hitter but we don’t even want to open that can of worms.  She also has a decent stance and she’s choking up on the bat a little to shorten the swing.  All in all, I’d say it looks like she knows what she’s doing. 

Which is good news because it means Obama also knows what he’s getting into.  If Reagan had known about Robert Bork’s infamous balk that lost his team the circuit court softball league championship in the summer of ’87, he might have thought twice about nominating him to the court so fresh on the heels of such disaster.  The bad blood from that alone probably cost him the votes of a couple senators who had money (and more) riding on the game.*

-A

*Although possible, RSBS has no proof of Bork’s softball shenanigans.  Or Ted Kennedy losing his man-ginity to Jesse Helms as a result of that balk.  However, we can assure you that Bork most certainly was not ratified by the senate and never sat on the Supreme Court.  Although who knows what happened in an alternate universe……?

No Experience Required

elena kagan.jpgFor the Matt Drudges, Satanic She-Worms and Jabba the Huts of the world, President Obama’s controversial decision to seat an inexperienced left-leanin’ lawyer to the world’s highest court is not going too well.  Indeed, dear readers, the rip-roarin’ has already commenced with character-bashing slander at the ready: “she has no experience!”… “she’s part of the Chicago machine!”… “She’s ugly! You sure that ain’t Gary Dell’abate!?!”

No.

I am not sure that she is not Gary Dell’abate.

gary dellabate.JPGBut I will try to pretend that I didn’t ever think about that.

She has no experience.  So what?  Does she have what it takes?  Does she have the balls to — wait, never mind.

As is the case with baseball, experience doesn’t always guarantee success.

Mike Leake never pitched a game in the minors and yet he has a record of 3-0 right now, one of those wins coming against the sCrUBS (which nets him extra points ‘cuz I say so).

Don Denkinger never had any experience being completely retarded for one single World Series play yet he managed to get the job done in 1985.

aj hinch.jpgAnd let me remind you of a fella who didn’t have any managerial experience whatsoever: a man, who as a player achieved a lifetime batting average of .219 with 32 homers and 112 RBI.  That man’s name is A.J. Hinch and that man manages the Arizona Diamondbacks and the Arizona Diamonbacks are… um… the D’backs are…

Pay no attention.

We’re all in this US American mess together. 

I hope.

Hate me ‘cuz it’s trendy, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right.

Peace,

Jeff

The Hand Skills Game

selig_umps_allstar.jpgFor a blog that purports to cover baseball and politics, we have been sadly remiss in following up on the great health care debate.  Sure, we paid attention as the package finally came to a vote and at least mentioned the outcome.  But what do we really think?

Well, these things take time to ponder.  And considering that this debate has been going on since at least WWII, the couple weeks we took to think it through isn’t so bad.  It’s an interesting bill especially because no one is really happy.  It’s the Congressional equivalent of the 2002 All-Star Game.  There were triumphant moments, there were awful moments and, in the end, everyone left just kind of feeling a little empty.  The left thinks it didn’t go far enough and the right thinks it’s Armageddon.  So what’s the truth?

I could try and explain the positives and negatives of the bill in my own words but Frank Rich already nailed the essence of what I could say in a column from a few weeks ago.  And since there’s not a whole lot I can add to that, let me just say this.  Whether you like the bill or not, this is a huge victory for Obama.  The Republicans can stake the 2010 midterms on their opposition to the bill and their intentions to repeal it but how are you going to explain that you want to reinstate language for pre-existing conditions into health coverage?  Because, let’s be honest, that’s what the debate is going to boil down to. 

Perhaps it would be easier if I could represent Obama’s victory to you in a more visual manner.  So, maybe this will help.  Pretend that the guy making the video is President Obama and Enton Gill is the Congressional Republicans.  Watch the video and you’ll see what I mean:

I imagine the Republicans will have a similar reaction when they finally open their eyes.

-A

Recess Time

fun_and_games.jpgPresidents often use the time-honored (or dishonored, depending on who you ask) tradition of the recess appointment to fill positions that have been blocked by the Congress.  Usually these are judges that one party is holding up because of some ideological dispute or just to prove a point.  Nothing says “screw you” quite like, well, like screwing you.

Presidents wield supreme executive authority and that makes it easy for them to make these kind of moves.  Legislative powers are spread out between 535 (mainly) crusty old men and even supreme judicial power is divided up between 9 judges.  But the president is one person and that means he can make decisions much more quickly when he needs to.

So, here’s the question.  Where could a baseball team take a lesson from the president in this matter?  The manager is already relatively free to play who they want when they want but most don’t have the power to unload a guy who’s underperforming.  Team owners are pretty much expected to pony up the money and then get out of the way.

When it comes down to it, if there’s one guy who can exercise executive power in the ballpark, it’s the GM.  The team owner endows the GM with the ability to make huge decisions affecting the present and the future of the franchise and the GM is expected to repay that trust with quality acquisitions and wins.  When the guy is Brian Cashman and the bank account is bottomless, that works out pretty well.  When the guy is Isiah Thomas and an entire league no longer exists because of your actions, well, that’s a different story.

But if the GM is like the president, how would he go about making a recess appointment?  If you ask me, pretty much everything done during the offseason is a recess appointment.  Trades and moves made during the season take place under the watchful eyes of millions of fans.  Once the World Series is over, the diehard fans still take notice and the news will get some play but there’s so much else to keep track of, any hubbub dies away pretty quickly.

So here’s a hint for any of you budding GMs out there.  You want to follow in the President’s footsteps and make a recess appointment?  Just wait til people’s heads are turned the other way and then make the trade you know will infuriate everyone.  They don’t have to like it, they just have to get used to it.

-A

Credits:
-Photo via Skull Swap

The Filibuster

You guys talk a lot about baseball and politics.  What do you think
will happen first, national health care or the Pirates having a winning
season?

Beth
Allentown, PA
____________________________________

dead pirate parrot.jpgEureka!  This is proof that dear readers galore are finally playing to our strengths here at RSBS, so even if your baseball team (or your government) does fail you, know that RSBS will always have your back (unless we’re busy doing something else, of course).  I, personally, love taking below-the-belt hacks at the lowly likes of Pittsburgh’s not-so-finest, so I am delighted that our friend Beth here from Allentown, PA was willing to groove one right down the middle, in my proverbial wheelhouse.

Because this one is almost too easy:

We, the people of US America, will most certainly have a nationwide public option health care system set up before we ever see the Pittsburgh Pirates finish a season with a winning record. 

Sorry, folks, but it’s just true.

Have you been paying attention to what the Bucs have been doing the last ten years?

No, of course not.  Why would you? 

I assure you, dear readers, no other team relishes in arbitrary head scratching more than the Pittsburgh Pirates — a team caught in the perennial chaos of “rebuilding” — a rebuilding that is always abandoned before any plus remnants of said rebuilding can be seen, only to be followed up with more rebuilding in moves that still don’t make sense.

Here is but a shortlist of brain-busting Bucco moves from recent memory:

  • Signing Akinori Iwamura
  • Dumping Nate McClouth (they did get McCutchen up quick because of this deal, but look for them to screw this up too)
  • The Aramis Ramirez & Kenny Lofton for Bobby Hill, Jose Hernandez and Matt Bruback trade
  • Drafting Bryan Bullington and passing on Prince Fielder, BJ Upton and Scott Kazmir
  • Signing Derek Bell
  • Paying Jason Kendall $10 million a year for SIX YEARS!
  • Signing Raul Mondesi
  • Drafting John Van Benschoten over David Wright
  • Cutting Bronson Arroyo
  • Picking up Matt Morris’ contract (worth $13 million)

This is just an abbreviated list; the full record of crimes against baseball committed by the Pirates’ front office are too many to present here.  But I can tell you this: it will take an awful long time before such atrocities are remedied with the results of a winning season.  I have no doubt about that.

But what about national health care, you ask?  House Leader Nancy Pelosi says lawmakers are on the “verge of making history” with the strong possibility of a public option becoming a reality… very soon.  Of course, they don’t say when, or how, considering the staunch stance of Republicans and soft Democrats blocking the way.  So what are we supposed to make of this?

Look, I admit, the Democratic party has certainly had its share of Pittsburgh Pirate-like moments over the years.  How else can one explain the incompetence of John Kerry and the loss of Ted Kennedy’s senate seat?  But that doesn’t mean all hope is gone.  Behind this political push to join the rest of civilized nations we do have a clear and just motive:

To stop penalizing people for getting sick.

As long as this continues to happen, I have a hard time believing in my country.  This was my main concern when I went to the polls in 2008.  The Obama Administration — while obviously not gifted with super powers like election propaganda may have led us to believe — has tackled this issue and tackled it hard. 

And it can only get better from here… I think.

So hate me ‘cuz I still tout liberal ideals, just don’t hate me ‘cuz I’m right about the Pirates continuing to suck.

Peace,

Jeff

(Image courtesy of Rum Bunter)

***SEND US YOUR FILIBUSTERS****

Something on your mind?  Want to see Jeff and Al sweat (separately, not together, eww)?  Think you got a real stumper?  Send us your Filibuster question(s) by commenting or emailing them to us at kraulung@gmail.com. 

***Promotional materials relating to the Official Church of Pujols also welcome.


Unanimous & Unglamorous Consent

cardinal kid.jpgAs a young boy growing up in the middling middle-class of US America, my dreams were aplenty. 

In particular, I dreamed of a day when I would succeed as a professional baseball player.  Wearing the mask behind the plate, I envisioned catching the called third strike to win the World Series… rushing to the mound, hugging my pitcher, shouting til I lost my voice.

Seemed glamorous.

So too did aspiring to be a great leader.  Always the smooth talker with a penchant for spontaneous charm, I reckoned I had the skills to become a good politician. 

Neither dream became reality; and poor old me had to settle for co-writing a hit baseball blog. 

But that’s okay.

I mean, I still wish I could have lived out those Major League aspirations… but when it comes to politics, I couldn’t be happier that I eschewed it all the way. (Yeah, I just said ‘eschewed’. I like that word. Eschew. Say it with me. Eschew.)  Because to be honest, politics is boring as hell.  Oh sure, the Jack Kennedys and Bill Clintons and Ronald Reagans and Barack Obamas make it look flashy and fun and cool; but most of what goes on behind the political scene is as boring as Tommy Lasorda is fat.

A lot.

Of course, you wouldn’t know it by watching this clip, which just happens to be the most exciting exchange on the senate floor since Strom Thurmond admitted he still owned slaves.  Okay, he didn’t admit that, but he probably should have.

*Ahem*

Will the Senator from Connecticut please continue…

Zzzzzzzzzz.

Oh, sorry.  You’re still reading?  Cool.

So, what did we learn?  Franken is an ^ss.  McCain is old.  Lieberman is confused.  

Don’t hate me.  ‘Cuz I’m right.

Happy Friday!

Jeff

PS, Thanks so much for all the kind well wishes you sent me on my birthday. Much appreciated! Fist bumps all around!

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