My immediate reaction to Tom Daschle withdrawing his nomination for head of US health was frustration. I felt like media scrutiny in the US had forced the administration to eliminate the most qualified candidate. Everybody seemed pretty excited about health care reform, and they had the perfect guy for the job. Well, good.
But the more I think about it…. taxes? You didn’t pay your taxes? Whatever the figure was (I think it was around a whopping $128,000), it was owed “over a period of years”. I have to believe as a government employee taxes is a topic that comes up on occasion. And, you know you need to have them square if you hope to achieve higher office. Both Daschle and Geithner, when made aware of their tax debts, just paid the balance off like it was a late cell phone bill. It drives me nuts that the US could possibly have a less successful health policy because 1 guy is smart enough to make the right changes, yet dumb enough to try to shirk tax payments. Straighten up.
While I’m stringing people up for being fools, let’s hang Clemens. Roger Clemens at age 40 looked like a billboard throwing a golf ball. Okay, you did steroids, fine. Everything about his career was hall-of-fame, and so he was placed on the appropriate pedestal. When he sat at home and watched Sammy “Rosetta Stone” Sosa and Pierre Mark McGuire forget English and commit perjury respectively, he must have been just. so. happy. it wasn’t him. So when things unfolded for him, you would think he’d have learned something.
Roger was too attached to his stats and fame to place his future and family first. Had he just come out and said “I did steroids” when this all started, he would have faced minor punishment, and a tarnished image. Hell, when Clemens started doing the drugs there wasn’t a policy in baseball against it, who could blame him for keeping up with the (Chipper) Jonses?
Now Roger Clemens has commited perjury too, and could potentially see jail time. His family must really appreciate his priorities. It’s embarrassing watching a legend lie, like a child caught crayon-in-hand against the wall saying they didn’t do it. And sidenote: what kind of life were these guys living? Their wives were comparing implants at a party? Nothing like a dose of reality when that reality is 1 hour sunshine time once a day. At least he’s really strong.
On the sports theme, I intend to write an article about my time at Islanders main camp some day. From my experiences, the players who have achieved actual success in the NHL are ones who are the least prone to point out their talents. Older players like Bill Guerin and Doug Weight may be a constant topic of forum debate for fans (are they worth the money), but the quick answer is that they’ve earned it. Bill Guerin is your old-school, ultra classy player, who commands respect and gives it back. The Islanders are heavy on super-young talent, and having a guy like Guerin there to teach them, if nothing else, is worth his salary and more.