Saturday, December 15, 2012

They say "knives kill people. Should we make them illegal?" There are 5 knives that are illegal in New York State. They are gravity knife, switchblade knife, pilum ballistic knife, metal knuckle knife and cane sword. Also any knife or dagger with intent to commit a crime is illegal.

They say "cars can be used to kill people. Should cars be illegal?" You have to get a license to operate a car. You have to register the car and get insurance. Cars are used to transport people. Knives are used to prepare food. 

Guns are used to kill things. Plain and simple.

Why can't we pass more stict gun control laws?

Friday, December 14, 2012


If we can't talk about gun control on a day like today, when can we? We are a nation of children. We are told you can't talk about it during or immediately after tragedies. Then no one does in between. The NRA rule the debate meanwhile there are over 12,000 gun murders in this country every year. Four 9/11's every year and we do nothing about it.

And where do the guns come from? They're stolen them from legal fun owners. If less guns are legally owned, then less guns are stolen. If you want to own a shotgun for hunting and home protection, fine with me. You want anything else? Join a militia or shooting club and they should remain there, locked in a secure armory vault. 

Mental health is a HUGE problem. As long as there are hundreds of millions of legal and illegal guns in this country, no amount of legislation is going to prevent insane people from obtaining and committing masacres with guns. That's why I tend towards less guns. It's impossible to know in each and every person weather or not they have the potential for a mass murder in them. So let's err on the side of caution.
I'm a realist though. We can't wave a wand and get rid of them all. So we should slowly close the spigot and aggressively bring in illegal guns. Let's aim for 20 years and 90% of all guns. As guns on the street both legal and illegal begin to dwindle then institute the actual Second Amendment. It says:

"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."
It mentions militia and state before arms and doesn't say anything about personal or home protection. I think the government absolutely has the right and duty to strongly regulate who can and cannot possess guns and what type should be allowed. I would argue for less and very few respectively. I also think anything not used for hunting should be kept locked in a gun club or militia armory vault.

NRA talking points are tired, logically flawed and easily defeated. But because of money the NRA can ruin a politicians career and make any talk of gun control political suicide. And there is nothing a politician values higher than his own skin other than easy money.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

NHL Lockout 3

This entry was sparked by a Facebook conversation with a friend after reading this Grantland article.

League revenues have increased 50% in the time since the 2004 lockout. Revenue was $2.2 billion in 2006 and up to 3.2 billion in 2012. Revenue is up 52% from 2004 pre-lockout.

Average player salaries:
-2003-04 1.8 mil,
-2005-06 1.4 mil (they didn't give up anything? Remember revenue went up 7% that season)
-2006-07 1.9 mil.
-2011-12 2.4 mil  

So that's a post lockout increase of 71%. It's a pre lockout increase of 33%. After the league's 52% increase it's a wash to me.

If you're worried about the fans I don't see how, for a moment, you can be pro-owners. It is after all a LOCKOUT! It's not a player strike. The owners could have negotiated while the season played out. The players offered to do just that. The lockout, especially a season long one, is the nuclear option. The owners hit the button without hesitation or diplomacy.

I cannot say it enough, the league has been making RECORD REVENUE!

This isn't 2004. The game isn't dying. It's got issues but nothing life threatening. If anything, it's healthier than ever. This move by the owners is completely unjustified. And this is a negotiation. Instead of talking and exchanging proposals, the NHL execs and owners storm out of every meeting like petulant children.

I don't give a shit about egos. There's a lot of egos at fault in this debacle. The players aren't blameless. They've already lost a lot more money than they're negotiating over. Both sides have.

And like the original Grantland article says the owners don't exactly risk the money it seems like they do. The city of Buffalo owns FNC and let's the Sabres do with it add they please. Glendale, AZ built an arena for the Coyotes and now gives the league $25 million a season for the privilege of letting the Coyotes stay.

Players on the other hand are the ones blocking shots, bare knuckle boxing and risking their brains for the owner's teams. They deserve a seat at the table, a voice in negotiations and fair split of the revenue. 

The owners set the salary cap. They signed the long term contracts. They allowed their GMs to do those things. Now we're to believe it's solely the players to blame for putting pen to paper? Was the Devils owner blameless in the Kovulchuk contact cap circumvention

In this lockout the fans will lose no matter what the outcome is. If the owners win you surely don't think they'll lower ticket prices or find another way to pass savings on to fans do you? No, they get to keep more of our money. If the players win, they get to keep more of our money. If there is another lost season I'm sure the fans will be expected to make up the lost revenue over the next few seasons. Oh they won't say it. We won't ask either. It'll happen though.

In the end the tickets cost more every year. The beer costs more every year. Parking costs more every year. The jerseys cost more every year. Watching the games on TV cost more every year as NBC passes the costs paid to the NHL onto fans by way of higher fees to cable providers which causes our cable bills to rise. Property taxes go up as teams demand more luxurious accommodations in arenas that they keep the profits of. No matter who wins, we lose. Oh, we get to watch our beloved sport and teams. We get something out of it. But as the costs continue to rise we grumble and pay. But we never ask questions or consider not paying.

In all of the numbers I quoted above, league revenue and player salaries, both increases have far out paced inflation. Trust me, I believe both sides are greedy, I just happen to think its the owners who are greedier this time.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

NHL Lockout 2

This is infuriating! The NHL is clearly not negotiating in good faith. The two sides sit down and talk and EVERY (if it was possible for that word to be burning with my hatred it would be) proposal the players submit, the league arrogantly dismisses. Instead of saying we'll take this, no to this or come up here down here, they jump up like petulant children and walk out. Then they give some short press conference and bitch that the 
players aren't speaking the same language. At least the players are speaking.

This is obviously how the owners became the billionaires they are today; by grabbing and snatching for every red cent in sight, elbowing and bullying everyone around them.