Okay, everybody is trying to spin the Packers vs. Seahawks game which took place last Monday night. Everybody, apart from a few die-hard fans in Seattle, admits that it was a bad call, and the Packers actually won. So the Packers are technically 2 and 1, and I will maintain that as their true record for the remainder of the season. In my eyes, the Pack is tied with Chicago for 1st place in the NL Central.
But here comes the silliness of political commentators. Paul Ryan is apoplectic about the loss, and I don't blame him. But then he says that the refs must be working part time in Barack Obama's budgetary office. Really? Not even Reed Richards can stretch things that far. And Mitt Romney has stated that Green Bay won, but the refs then stole that victory away from them. Okay, you won't hear me say this too often, but I agree with Obamacare Jr. on that one. On the other hand, there's no way in hell that Romney can win in the Pacific Northwest, and Wisconsin is a swing state. What the hell did we expect him to say? Either way, Barack Obama made his statement regarding his disagreement with the ref's call first, thus beating everybody to the punch. Our president understands, perhaps better than any other before him, that a Commander In Chief who joins basketball fans in drawing up his chart for March Madness is far more in touch with the people than one who has a hoity-toity-horse in the Olympic Dressage.
As usual, I think everybody is missing the point regarding the replacement refs' bad call. Or rather, the series of bad calls that led up to it as well, as there was a phantom call for roughing the passer, and a case of the refs getting the jerseys mixed up when Sam Shields was so blatently mauled by the wide receiver on a play that he got badly bruised, then somehow got called for defensive pass interference. (This, by the way, is exactly the same logic as a Muslim claiming that it's a woman's own fault for getting raped.) Unions are claiming that this is just what you get for trying to do union-busting. Teachers are claiming that it's sad that unions are demonized in public schools and yet lionized in the NFL. Neither is necessarily wrong, but that's not the main point.
The main point is this: "Union" must mean "quality!" Look what happened when union quality was replaced with scabs in this case. The union was not busted. Rather, the NFL owners were. And why? Over something they could easily afford. They tried to peddle inferior product, and got caught. It didn't work precisely because quality sells. You get what you pay for.
Every union leader needs to take notice of this. Union must be synonymous with quality. The story every anti-union fool tells regarding his/her opinion of why unions suck always involves some slacker who finally gets fired and then the union fights for him, putting him back in the job where he can continue to screw up. Unions need to realize that, in today's world, in order for unions to survive, that story must not only be relegated to history, it must be synonymous with mythology. The union must fire the slackers before the owner (read private, city, state or federal) ever feels the need to. Yes, the union must fight to prevent arbitrary firing, but it must fight equally hard to secure the highest training, the best quality work, and the highest possible output.
The reason teachers' unions are unpopular in Milwaukee and Chicago is because they are protecting bad teachers on the general principle that anybody willing to teach in the rough and tumble inner city must be worth it. They also feel, almost to a Man, that protecting the students with potential from the students who are lost causes is their primary job. Bullshit! It is possible to educate all, if the streets are shut out. (Which is why I believe in boarding schools.) Look at Massachusetts! They have teachers' unions in public schools too, and their education quality is the best in the nation! It's not the unions, it's the quality of the teachers.
So, not only do you have to submit to teacher evaluations, my dear unions, YOU should have been the ones doing the evaluating beforehand! YOU should have fired the bad teachers first!
I believe in teacher unions. But the morons running them in Milwaukee and Chicago need to get a clue. They should not be shocked when a Scott Walker comes along. They should not even be shocked when a Democrat named Rahm Emanuel is forced to break tradition and give them the shaft. If you keep asking for it, then damn it all, you'll eventually get it!
And that brings me to my final point: We're not really paying for quality when it comes to the NFL referees. Let's face it. If the "real" refs were calling the plays, we'd have complained about them every bit as much as we complained about the replacements! No employee is perfect, and the pro refs make mistakes, just like everybody else. But would they have made the kinds of egregious errors which let the Seahawks snatch victory, not just from defeat's jaws, but by slicing defeat's belly open and pulling it's stomach contents out? No, they probably wouldn't. But that's the difference between quality and shitty in the NFL - one bad play. And that small margin of quality is protected by a fake union made up of high-society snobs!
How much should quality mean to a REAL union, made up of truly blue-collar workers?