United, we root

By John Toth

Our country has been united by – of all things – bad football refereeing.
Yeah, the referees blew the call. Yeah, the replacement refs were lousy.
But the now-infamous big, bad call actually had a positive effect on the country during this heated political season. It diverted our attention from the battle between the “illegal Kenyan” and the “corporate raider/tax dodger.”
And, it actually put both political parties on the same page, at least on this issue.
“Paul (Ryan) was very angry that the Green Bay Packers, he believes, won, and the referees took it away from them,” said Mitt Romney.
“I’ve been saying for months, we’ve gotta get our refs back,” President Obama said.
“After catching a few hours of sleep, the #Packers game is still just as painful,” tweeted Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R), ending it with the hash-tag: “#Returntherealrefs.”
If Walker wanted the union-member referees back, you know that the replacements were lousy.
See what happens when we all work together for a cause? The real refs are back. We did it, people.
The referees had been locked out since early June, when negotiations over a new contract between the National Football League Referees Association and the NFL broke down.
It’s amazing what gets the country’s attention. But, if we can reach common ground on an issue, all the better.
At least all teams were in the same boat. The referees were the same poor quality all over the NFL.
I personally think it brought an added feature to the game that reliable referees were not be able to contribute. Who would have thought that the ruling on a catch would be as exciting as the actual catch?
But this hoopla was not just about blown calls. It was also about the NFL’s stand against elements trying to upset its socialistic revenue flow.
And, of course, also about how the unionized referees wanted a bigger piece of the profit pie.
About 70 percent of the NFL television revenue, which amounts to more than $4 billion annually, is doled out equally among the professional teams. Equal distribution of wealth is akin to socialism.
Then, the teams need huge stadiums to play in – huge public stadiums, built with tax dollars.
“On average, taxpayers fund 60 percent of new stadium costs. In the last 20 years, the NFL’s take of taxpayer subsidies has amounted to $17 billion,” writes Matthew Stevenson for the website newgeography.com.
If that’s not an example of socialism, I don’t know what is.
The owners as a group didn’t really care how good or bad the calls were. In their rich, “socialist” world (how ironic), that is not a major concern. Plus, all the teams were suffering ... equally.
They just didn’t plan on the replacements messing up so badly that even the national political campaigns got into the action.
The owners ended up caving in to public pressure, but their money is guaranteed, no matter the calls. Football is protected from little bumps in the road like blown calls and union referees who want a bigger pension fund. It’s protected by a socialist system of distributing revenues.
It puts a financial unbrella over their heads that is hard to budge.
I am not saying whether this is good or bad, only that of all the things money can buy, this one is off the chain – it can buy socialism. The NFL is living proof of that.
Now, let’s review that play again for the umpteenth time. That was a horrible call! Like the owners really cared. Socialism also has a pacifying effect.
Disclaimer: John Toth writes satirical columns based on current events, and sometimes on events that happened a long time ago, or actually never happened. Please use only for entertainment purposes.