Get the money… Dolla Dolla Bill Y’all…
(The State of Sports, the Pandemic and the Billionaires ruining everything)
There hasn’t been a lot of fun to be had for sports-loving folks during the global COVID-19 pandemic; no live sporting events, no clubs or leagues to participate in and no sports bars to discuss the events as they occur. It has been tough for a lot of sports fans. We don’t have our primary passion to distract us from the world crumbling around us. Unemployment is sky high and over 150,000 people have died in the United States (over 500,000 world-wide). Even worse is the lack of an authority or trusted source for information in the current landscape. Everything is so politicized and divisive that even ideas that should be accepted as common knowledge lead to a battle between two sides.
This is exactly what the billionaires want.
I started this post in the wake of the news that my favorite English football club, Arsenal, is letting go 55 members of their staff. This, only 3 days after the team triumphed in the FA Cup, earned a place into Europa League (and the financial windfall that comes with it to the tune of over $20 million in TV rights alone) and put a bright silver lining on what had been the single worst campaign in over 25 years for the London based football giant. To save 2.5 million pounds.
Let me put this in the plainest of terms – A billionaire owner fired 55 regular people to save 2.5 million only 3 days after the players he employs (because let’s face it, he had f**k all to do with what happened on the pitch) won his bank accounts an extra $20+ million.
Oh, and this is after the club convinced all of said players that agreeing to a 12.5% pay cut (which they did) would save jobs around the club.
I’ve stated on this site before, I don’t particularly care who wins arguments between millionaires and billionaires; but if I have to pick sides, millionaires win. Well in a battle between billionaires and people who live paycheck to paycheck… it’s no contest.
When politicians and the media tell you who to trust in modern times and you feel like all of these parties are working against you, it’s because they are. No, I’m not spouting some crazy right-wing/left-wing conspiracy theory about pedophilia or eating stem cells; I’m talking about the fact that the global capitalist system we all live in currently is NOT set up to benefit the majority. I’m not talking about the 51% Democrat majority in the US, I’m talking about the 99% of us who aren’t billionaires and therefore have experienced our power and ability to live successfully getting strangled out of the world by the ultra-rich and their ability to pull strings in governments and throughout society.
A friend of mine uttered a phrase to me the other day that I’ve since read in a couple of articles and posts online – “Communism for corporations, capitalism for the people”. This is why companies like Boeing can repeatedly screw up and get BILLIONS from our government to bail them out (or GM, or American Airlines…) but you get no healthcare, a crumbling infrastructure, failing school system and a measly $1200 from the richest country in the world for 4 months of being locked in your house. It’s why you had to close your gym or small restaurant while Wal-Mart and Home Depot got to stay open with little to no restrictions. Repeat after me, the system is not set up for us to succeed.
If you thought this was new in the era of Trump or Obama (depending on which side of the same coin you fall on), think again. Thanks Reagan! The introduction of “trickle down economics” (if you don’t know what this mean, by all means, go look, I’ll wait) to the thriving United States (and therefore global) economic system turned a great nation into the crony capitalist political wasteland you see today. Looking back, you can see the rhetoric they used being almost logical, if you squint real hard. Reality is, nothing ever trickles down, it gets hoarded by the rich. Remember that big tax breaks corporations got in 2018 that was supposed to be spent on infrastructure improvements and jobs? You know where it went? Stock buy-backs and lucrative bonuses for board members. Wages increased by less than 2%. Yeah, that tricked right into the pockets of the rich alright.
I know this is a sports site and I’ve been rather silent in general without any ability to participate in sports. I’m not enjoying the pandemic in any way, shape or form. Not being able to go out and play hockey or baseball with my friends and family SUCKS, but I after hearing about those 55 people losing their jobs so a billionaire doesn’t have to spend his own money on his own team… I just couldn’t keep it in. It’s not a sports issue; it’s a society issue and if we don’t address it in every avenue we have available, well, we’re not doing what’s right.
I hope to get back to PJ Sports Life as soon as we’re allowed to get back to a sporting life. I may start playing some MLB The Show and F1 2020 on Twitch under the PJ Sports Life banner soon, so keep an eye out for that.
If you’re reading this and my insight struck you, take the time to check out my other venture, Yell at the World. It’s a podcast where guests have the chance to speak on their passion or biggest issue in the world. I’ve recorded a few episodes and full release should be a go within the next couple weeks, so make sure you bookmark http://www.yellattheworld.com!
Just a guy who loves sports.