Tag Archive: NFL

Chris Christie and the NFL Player, Sex Offender Helping Raise Money for Him

Art Gallagher has an interesting item over at More Monmouth Musings. Art’s reporting that Chris Christie’s April 30 fundraiser in Middletown has a convicted sex offender on the Host Committee.

He’s Christian Peter, former NFL star who has a long history of abuse of women from his playing days as a college football star, and a reputation that followed him into his days as a pro. Here’s the invitation; scroll down for all the names, which include a long list of GOP electeds, including Asm Mary Pat Angelini and Sen. Jennifer Beck. Peter is listed as a Supporting Member of the Host Committee.

Redemption can be a commendable thing, if it’s paid for in admission and redress. I’ll leave it to Christian Peter to determine for himself what kind of man he’s become, though the kind of man he spent years being is clear enough. But the optics of Christie hobnobbing with an abusive for campus sports demigod this week, as Rutgers broils over its own campus sports scandal of abuse … well, let’s call it a questionable choice.

Want to know more about who Host Committee Chair Joe Kyrillos has helping pull in cash for Christie? Yeah, so did I. Rest of the story, below the fold.

What We Should Learn From the NFL Referee Lockout

promoted by Rosi

Over the past few years, Governor Christie and his counterparts in Wisconsin as well as other states along with their allies on the Democratic side of the aisle have created an environment where public employees have become the scapegoat for much larger and usually unrelated issues.

While it was popular over this time period to hear talk about how much the union members received in terms of pensions or overtime or whatever else, there was never really any talk about why these types of things (you know, basic health benefits, a reasonable wage increase and some help in retirement after putting in 10, 15, 20 years) shouldn’t also be available to EVERYONE.  The whole class warfare argument has been turned on its head where the coverage should have been less on how private sector workers were blaming public sector workers (or non-union workers blaming unions) as opposed to the basic underlying question of why someone should work the way they do under circumstances that could leave them high and dry at any given time, even though the fruits of their labor benefitted those who may not deserve it (see all of the insane packages that executives got for failing companies).

And the outrage was, in all honesty, misdirected during this time.  We have seen a massive push towards the corporatization and dumbing down of education over the last few years (starting with Bush’s NCLB) – especially here in NJ with Christie’s push for more private corporate funded voucher schools.  But even though having professional teachers teach our children is something that directly impacts every parent, that wasn’t the message we were being told.

So of course it took something that really impacted everyone – watching NFL games (snark seeping through) to show what so many people whose voices were drowned out by the propaganda machine and sheep mentality have been screaming for some time – it takes professionals to do the job that they are supposed to do.  Whether it is professional referees (who, by the way, routinely get calls wrong, just as everyone gets things wrong from time to time in their job) or professional teachers or professional policemen, firefighters or engineers – we need the right people to do the job that the profession calls for.

This post from the other day really nails it:

But the real scorn should come from the fact that the league replaced unionized workers with scabs and is jeopardizing the safety of its players to save pennies on the dollar. This is America, though, where we apparently don’t care about our fellow workers or the modern day gladiators who are ruining their lives one hit at a time, as long as the right team wins the football game.

But it also goes deeper than that.  Whether it is the NFL referee lockout, the fight against teachers or other public workers (here, in Wisconsin, in Chicago or wherever else) there is another common thread – the disdain for reasonable retirement benefits – the “defined benefit”.  And as I stated earlier, this should be something that everyone deserves, so the scorn shouldn’t be on those who still have it, but those who are denying it to their workers – union or not.   Even looking at the resolution of the NFL referee lockout, we find that:

The league made a major concession to keep funding a pension plan for the next five years before transitioning that benefit to become a 401K plan. There is even a slight increase in the pension benefits plan from 2012-16.

Interesting.  What is the big elephant in the room as it relates to NJ’s finances and credit rating?  The unfunded pension liabilities – something that after strongarming additional concessions on, Governor Christie is STILL blowing off.  With the “risk” (and I use risk instead of “widespread fraud”) in the stock market and the transition from “defined benefit” to “defined contribution”, this just puts more people’s retirement at risk while Governor Christie and his counterparts squeeze as much out of workers – the real producers – as they can before stealing the retirement funds invested in the stock market they rigged.

It’s too bad that (1) it took a blown call in a football game to highlight this and (2) most people won’t even connect the dots to see the bigger issue of fairness at the workplace.

Jon Runyan, Show Us What You’re Made Of

In the grand scheme of things, the lockout of the NFL players is a trivial blip. The disaster in Japan, the famine in Africa, and the destruction of the American Dream by the Corporate Tea Party are more important than football, and will fundamentally impact world history.

But many of us are football fans. We enjoy watching the Eagles make their annual futile attempt to garner Super Bowl rings. Rumor has it that there are even some fans of the Giants and Jets in New Jersey.

Certainly, the NFL provides an economic boost to the cities in which it plays – an important factor in these troubled economic times. So how can today’s labor-management impasse be resolved?

Watch Live: Will NJ host the Superbowl?

Updated by Jason Springer: And NJ gets the Superbowl in 2014.  Here’s Chuck Todd’s tweet after the announcement:

So New Jersey gets a Super Bowl. Let’s agree, this is NOT New York’s Super Bowl but New Jersey’s, right? #letItSnowless than a minute ago via web

The NFL will announce the host of the 2014 Super Bowl this afternoon and here is the headline to the latest blog post at NFL.com:

New York/New Jersey Super Bowl is virtual slam dunk

Even if you’re not a football fan, the Super Bowl would be a large economic generator for the region as a whole with air travel, food, lodging, parties and more. You can watch the NFL announcement live:

I personally like the idea of a Super Bowl being played in the possible elements of a northeast winter. You can watch the NY/NJ NJ/NY presentation here. And in case Senator Lesniak is able to legalize gambling by 2014, who wants to set the over under on how long it takes to become just the NY Superbowl?  

NFL wants NJ to pass concussion law

The issue of concussions and brain injuries has continued to receive more attention in recent years and now the NFL is looking for states to take action. And it’s not just New Jersey they are asking:

NFL commissioner Roger Goodell sent a letter to 44 governors urging them to pass a law similar to one in Washington state that protects young athletes from concussions.

The CDC says there are over 3.8 million sports related concussions each year. There are 3 main elements of the Washington law that the NFL wants states to adopt:

• Athletes, parents and coaches must be educated about the dangers of concussions each year.

• If a young athlete is suspected of having a concussion, he/she must be removed from a game or practice and not be permitted to return to play.

• A licensed health care professional must clear the young athlete to return to play in the subsequent days or weeks.

It doesn’t seem like they are asking for that much. Concussions are a scary proposition with the potential for extreme long term consequences if not handled properly. Rep. John Conyers will hold a forum in NY today on concussions where this request of states by the NFL will be discussed.

D’OH

Someone needs to fire their scheduler.

On the day pro sports gambling was up for a vote in Assembly, an NFL player just happened to be on hand to receive special props for the Giant’s huge Superbowl win.

With most south Jersey Assemblymen pushing hard to legalize sports betting, it was bad timing for them that the media was quick to ask Superbowl champ Kareem McKenzie his views on the measure to allow sports betting in Atlantic City.

Aparently the NFL takes a dim view citing possibly shadiness.

McKenzie offered this ominous possibility talking to NJN’s Jim Hooker:

You have individuals who will attempt to place themselves in a position to effect the game or trying to create an environment in which professional athletes owe them a favor.

Basically the worst possible PR for the bill’s sponsors who want to allow sports gambling to stay competitive with other states where it’s legal to do so.