2016-11-13

Gregg Popovich's Comments Breakdown

This is getting tiring. Taking on the world.

Gregg Popovich - 'Pop' - weighed in on Trump. If you follow sports, you know Greg Popovich is one of the more interesting characters in basketball if not pro sports in North America. 

I read his comment and don't consider it to be insufferable but it is highly selective and falls under the  'you're not considering the alternative enough because you're obsessed with one side' file. I feel somewhat uncomfortable doing so with a man who served his country (and as coach of a team and organization I've come to respect as a sports fan) so I can but focus on the intellectual side of his argument.

Let's break it down:

"...but the disgusting tenor and tone and all of the comments that have been xenophobic, homophobic, racist, misogynistic.

"I live in that country where half of the people ignored all of that to elect someone. That's the scariest part of the whole thing to me."


          Seems innocuous enough but there's a lot one can take issue with. First, let's tackle the issue of how we've come to throw words around flippantly that seems to have accelerated during the Obama administration. What's 'scary' is how low the standard to which someone qualifies as 'racist' or 'misogynistic' has become. When you soberly examine Trump's words I don't think they rise to being misogynistic in the classic sense as we've come to understand the word. If so, then and this is where Pop sets himself up to charges of hypocrisy, millions of people are guilty of this including above all athletes. He can't sit there and lecture people while pretending 'locker room' gutter talk doesn't exist. It flies of the face of reality and shared experiences. It certainly challenges the fact the NBA has had its own major issues with violence, spousal and drug abuse through the years. 


Words matter but if the most you've got is 'grab her pussy' (I'm guilty of this vulgar talk myself) then, really, in its most profound and logical sense where political argument is concerned, you got nothing.

Nothing.
The Democrat party itself has had a history of 'misogynistic' politicians including the serial sexual assaulter Bill Clinton. Did Pop ever voice displeasure then in defence of women? Why? Has there really been a proliferation of misogyny? No. This is all a narrative. A narrative he bought and uses to pass of as critical thinking to defend his choice - Hillary.

"I look at the Evangelicals and I wonder, those values don't mean anything to them? All of those values to me are more important than anybody's skill in business or anything else because it tells who we are,"

Conjecture. And misleading. Again. Look at the alternative. Had Hillary been an upstanding individual with integrity and truly was the target of misogyny, then yes, he has a point.

She isn't and you're pissing in the wind wasting valuable time and energy. She's worst than Trump and we have a clear, proven track record of it.

I wonder if Pop considered the cynical ploy on the part of the media with the sexual allegations against Trump. Yeh, doubt it. We believe what we want to believe.

"That's what worries me. I get it, of course we want to be successful, we're all going to say that. Everybody wants to be successful, it's our country, we don't want it to go down the drain. But any reasonable person would come to that conclusion, but it does not take away the fact that he used that fear mongering, and all of the comments, from day one, the race bating with trying to make Barack Obama,"

Ugh. Argggh. 


          Emotional clap trap we've all come to expect from the left.  Notice the 'reasonable' person bit. No 'reasonable' person would want a gun. No 'reasonable' person would want 23 types of deodorant. It's presumptuous rubbish.  In my case, Obama deserved every bit of scorn and criticism he got. He played his part in creating this mess of a situation with his own divisive rhetoric and illiterate economic comments. The criticism is fair. To claim it's race baiting is lazy, lazy, lazy and an insult and part of the reason Trump won. Pop gives the impression of being an esoteric thinker but I'm not so sure. He seems to, when it comes down to it,  just fall back on the narrative when it suits him.


"The fact that people can just gloss that over, start talking about the transition team, and we're all going to be kumbaya now and try to make the country good without talking about any of those things. And now we see that he's already backing off of immigration and Obamacare and other things, so was it a big fake, which makes you feel it's even more disgusting and cynical that somebody would use that to get the base that fired up."

          Pop is losing credibility fast and furiously. First off, Obamacare fucked the middle-class. It was a piece of legislation flawed from the get-go and was enormously unpopular. It had no input from the GOP and was rammed through in the middle of the night. So let's not pretend this was a work of pristine goodness. Second, the rolling out of it was a gigantic disaster and yet another example of inept government waste. Never mind Obama flat out lied about 'you can keep your plan and doctor' and 'premiums would fall $2500".  As for Trump moderating. Yeh but notice he kept the least controversial parts - the pre-existing condition and keeping people on it until 26 years-old. 

          I don't know what his point is on immigration but I posed it below. Trump's immigration plan is exactly like Canada's. Pop needs to read a little more. And if you want disgusting cynicism I saw plenty of it under Obama and still more with Hillary. Right, she wasn't cynical herself during the campaign. Calling people 'deplorable' or 'bitter clingers' or telling them 'you didn't build that' is cynical and disgusting in my book.

           It's not the first time Pop does this. I remember during the Arizona immigration law (which was popular among citizens) he called it a 'knee-jerk' reaction even though they had been giving it careful deliberation debating it since the 1990s 

"To get elected. And what gets lost in the process are African Americans, and Hispanics, and women, and the gay population, not to mention the eighth grade developmental stage exhibited by him when he made fun of the handicapped person. I mean, come on. That's what a seventh grade, eighth grade bully does. And he was elected president of the United States. We would have scolded our kids. We would have had discussions until we were blue in the face trying to get them to understand these things. He is in charge of our country. That's disgusting."

I repost:

On Principles. 

Think about it. If integrity is sooooo important to them, on what what planet do they live to think Hillary Bleeping Clinton was a better choice? Yeh. Here's the thing. I teach my kid not to lie yet Hillary (i.e. sniper fire, Benghazi (where her and Obama's actions led to an innocent man being jailed etc.) does and did (going back even as First Lady) little if nothing but lie. I teach my kid to respect others. Yet Hillary holds them in contempt (e.g. she let her distraught supporters down when she didn't address them personally after the election, or the now infamous 'deplorables' quip etc.). I teach my kid to observe rules and the law. Yet, Hillary broke the law by having an unsecured private server while Secretary of State. Her irresponsibility was not just a spit in the face of American law but by extension to the people of the country she so desperately wanted to rule not govern. I teach my kid civil ethics. Ethics, in part, include when you're in a position of power or influence, you keep to accepted basic notions of 'dos and donts'. Hillary via her Foundation, broke this principal. She peddled influence and profited from it. A woman who has a trail of scandals including Whitewater following her. Which brings me to respect again. This behaviour shows an utter disrespect for the office and title she held. I teach my kid to stick to deeply held and observed principles. Hillary cynically slithers around leaving herself open to how the polls and trends swing (ie. marriage is between a man and woman). And what of women? This is a woman who, rather than stand up and take a principled stand, let her husband commit acts of adultery and sexual assaults acing as an enabler to his misdeeds. We're told she's a strong woman but acted weak and even unjust by destroying the life of a person in the process. The fact is, over 30 years, all I've seen from her is a sleazy and scandalous track record. Where there's dubious activities, you can bet Hillary was around it. 


And as if this wasn't enough and if you thought she'd be humble. She doubled-down on her sociopath behaviour the next day when she planted a picture giving the impression she was in thoughtful reflection in the forest and bumped into a sympathetic supporter. Turns out, thanks to blogs, that person was a staffer. 

Imagine this as your country's 'designated survivor'? Please!

Let's talk cynicism Pop. Please. By all means.


         "So that's my real fear, and that's what gives me so much pause and makes me feel so badly that the country is willing to be that intolerant and not understand the empathy that's necessary to understand other group's situations. I'm a rich white guy, and I'm sick to my stomach thinking about it. I can't imagine being a Muslim right now, or a woman, or an African American, a Hispanic, a handicapped person. How disenfranchised they might feel. And for anyone in those groups that voted for him, it's just beyond my comprehension how they ignore all of that. My final conclusion is, my big fear is -- we are Rome."


Quite an emotional mess and muddled logical fallacy topped off with a non-sequitur. 

I think the issue of racism not being a deciding factor has been well documented and hammered enough by several people. To keep saying it only proves they can't moderate their thoughts and quite frankly, I think it's deplorable to stick to it. There was much more at work and stake here. I'd like to mention, at this point, I'm not defending any of those things. Trump said and did it and he has to own it. I'm just contextualizing the whole thing and in the grand scheme of things, I think this is utter over-reaction. But I'd rather focus on the Rome bit being a history buff and all.

Leftists and liberals like to cherry pick the spots where they think Rome and America are similar - and usually the bad stuff. It's what they do as cynics and faux self-righteous revisionists. Very few progressives who play history teacher on the internet understand Rome. They're only interested in finding the parts that fit the narrative as Pop just did.

As John McClane once said, 'you think I'm fucken stupid, Hans?'

Where there were no bullets in the gun, there are no valid points in his assertion.

So. Is he suggesting Rome decline begins with trump because this is ridiculous. I wonder if his starting point, say, begins with George Bush, skips Obama (who pretty much is a mediocre version of Bush 2.0), and resumes with Trump (who, by the way, when you look at his platform away from the noise falls under the category of a liberal democrat)? His comment gives the impression Rome's fall was sudden and with one Emperor. Of course, it wasn't and was a long process much like how the barbarian invasions that crashed Rome was a long, slow evolving process. Pop may want to examine immigration under Rome. He'll find some interesting things that would make him rethink his Arizona position. 

Specifically, which period of Rome is pointing to? The Crisis of the 3rd Century? The Severan Dynasty? The Year of the Five Emperors? Rome is not like talking about Burlington, Vermont. 

 Is he suggesting Romans were racist? I don't know how you from 'I can't imagine what it's like to be a minority' to 'we are Rome' in one paragraph. THAT makes no sense.

You can't just say things to sound smart without especially a complicated subject matter comparing two mighty nations separated by 2100 years.

It's disingenuous and breaks how one should read and interpret history. More so if you plan to connect it to contemporary times. 

Comparing Rome to America is a fascinating subject but misuse it to make a cheap political point does a great service to this historical exercise. It demeans and ignores the plentiful complexities too numerous to discuss in a blog post or in front of the mics. It might play well with 'the base' but not to people who are actually well-read and not hijacked by emotions. The flippant use of Rome, I've come to see, is no different than when people invoke The Crusades in a pathetic exercise of moral and intellectual relativism.

Methinks and posit, Pop the 'je ne sais quoi' pontificator has some refining to do. Like he does with his line-up.

Tink, tink.