The World Trade Center Mosque

By: Billy BeerSlugger

So there is a Muslim group trying to put up a large Mosque a little bit away from the “hallowed grounds” of the World Trade Center. The beef being that it was Muslim extremists who flew plane into the World Trade Center towers to begin with. A lot of people on the right/conservative side of the including Sarah Palin who I’m not sure why people listen to her. I haven’t seen or heard of any Democrats come out against it but one would have to guess that there are some who are completely against it but won’t touch the subject politically.

It’s a touchy subject, the largest mass murder in American History and the religion of the supposed perpetrators is trying to essentially put a large headquarters within a stones throw of that site. However, as many pudits probably have pointed out (I haven’t been watching TV lately), America grants the freedom to practice religion.

In the Bill of Rights, Amendment 1:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

I think it’s pretty clear right there, those people are within their rights to establish a Mosque wherever they please; you can’t prohibit them from building a Mosque.

Just a couple of other things I want to bring up:

  1. Just because an extreme group of Muslims blew up the World Trade Center does not make all Muslims bad people. There’s extreme groups of Christianity, Judaism, Buddhism and every other major religion who give their more moderate brothers and sisters a bad name.
  2. Voltaire once said, “I do not agree with what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.” I certainly agree with this statement in terms of Freedom of Speech and I think it lends itself well to Freedom of religion.

I do not particularly agree with placing a Mosque so close to Ground Zero but I’m also an American and I support any religions wish to practice. If they own that land or have somehow been granted that land then they have the right to build there. End of story.

Even as I am right leaning it does not seem very tolerant of religions in general. At least on the part of some people in our crappy political system.

Adam Lambert Controversy

That's so gay!
That's so gay!

By: Robby RipChord

You know people are all up in arms over some sort of American Music Awards performance by Adam Lambert.  I had to figure out who Adan Lambert was and apparently he was on that American Idol show. I’m not sure if he won or not but he’s also a homosexual (not that there’s anything wrong with that).  I guess he kissed one of his male band members and did some suggestive dancing or something. I can’t really tell you what happened because not only do I not watch award shows for the most part but I also refuse to lookup a video that has guys kissing in it so I can disseminate to you why that doesn’t give me a warm feeling inside.

The performance has been labeled “Outrageous” and there has been a bunch of backlash from it including getting nixed from a Good Morning America interview (instead CBS’ The Early Show picked up the interview).  I really wouldn’t have known about this whole thing if it wasn’t for a coworker who alerted me of the fiasco. The funny part is she described it as disgusting, however, she is absolutely pro gay marriage. When I probed her about this she told me that she was pro gay marriage but she didn’t necessarily want to see it on TV.  I found this quite hypocritical in that gay and lesbian people who want to be married and have a wedding like straight couples would eventually have to kiss at the closing of the ceremony. Can you be pro gay marriage but not want to go to a gay marriage ceremony as well?

Not to say that a gay marriage ceremony would be anything like an Adam Lambert concert make out fest but if someone is claiming to be tolerant and progressive enough to give an enthusiastic yay vote on gay marriage shouldn’t that person also not want to throw up when they see two men slip each other the tongue during an awards show?

Why is it more socially acceptable for Britney Spears, Christina Aguilerra and Madonna all make out in succession but Adam Lambert can’t make out with his own band members without getting ditched from interviews?  Not to say there’s a double standard but, well maybe that is what I’m saying.  Why can guys like Stifler from American Pie and Ashton Kutcher make out or Heath Ledger and Jake Gyllenhaal movie but Adam Lambert is given the boot from a morning show interview? Is it because those movies are done for laughs or art and the other is done for perceived shock entertainment? Is it because Adam Lambert is admittedly gay and the other actors mentioned are (as far as I know) not?

I’m playing Devil’s Advocate a little here but I just want to point out some hypocrisy that is going on in America.  You can be for Gay Marriage and not particularly want to see dudes make out, i get that. Just don’t be so be adamant about your support for the gay politics and then be disgusted when they make a scene in public, because they are going to make a scene it’s pretty much inevitable.

All this reminds me of a Public Service Announcement I saw recently which tries to fight back against the phrase “That’ so gay”.

I think this PSA proves without a doubt that it’s pretty gay to say “That’s so gay”!

Barney Frank is 420 Friendly

By: Billy BeerSlugger

Barney Frank is the second openly gay Member of the House of Representatives a post he has manned since 1981.  He is also the Chair of the House Financial Services Committee dealing with issues like mortgage foreclosure bailout, American Housing Rescue & Foreclosure Prevention Act, Credit Cardholders’ Bill of Rights Act among other things.  A pretty big deal.  He favors medical marijuana which we’ll get to a little later.

You will see him on MSNBC, CNN, CNBC and he will even go on Fox and do interviewers with such right wing gas bags as Bill O’Reilly.  What I found so hilarious is that Barneys gay lover was arrested for marijuana possession, cultivation, and use of drug paraphernalia.  Barney was there when his partner was busted but denied knowing what the plants looked like etc.

It’s completely funny to me that heads the House Financial Services Committee
is banging some dude who is a big enough pot head to grow it in the backyard. It’s the kind of news you think would have gotten major play in the media circa 2007 given Frank’s high profile job dealing with the mortgage crisis and all.

Not that I’m hating on him at all, I’m all for legalizing the Mary Jane and taxing the shit out of it but if we are going to hold our athletes accountable for getting caught smoking pot and suspend them or whatever, then maybe, just maybe we should hold our government officials accountable as well. If an NFL player can be at the wrong place at the wrong time and get chastised in the media and or suspended then I’m pretty sure the people who actually have a hand in shaping policy for our Government should be held up to that scrutiny as well.

Either way Colbert is hilarious in this Vid.

60 Minutes of Unchecked Facts

It's more like 42 minutes and 18 minutes of commercials.

By: Billy BeerSlugger

I didn’t actually see this episode of the investigative news/magazine 60 Minutes since the Phillies were on but from what I and other people on the internet can tell you, their editor needs to do a little better in the fact checking department.

Their segment was on how illegal downloading was costing Hollywood 6 billion a year, which may or may not be that far off, however, the reasoning they give to support this claim is pretty much fabrication or conjecture which ever way you want to look at it.

First there is the claim that Organized Crime (the Mafia?) is making most of it’s money off of counterfeit movies.  Now I’m not going to dispute the fact that there are bootlegged movies out there but 60 Minutes is having me believe that Tony Soprano is behind all of this and not some dude with a DVD burner in his basement looking for some extra cash. I mean I could at least warm up to the idea if 60 Minutes gave me any proof. There was some talk about gangs of pirates using mafia style pickups but the focus quickly turned to illegal downloading.

Second, there is the segments claims by director Steven Soderbergh that piracy is costing the movie industry 6 billion a year.  Neglected is the fact that Hollywood continues to make more and more money each year. Another Soderbergh assertion is that fewer movies are being made and will continue to be made because of piracy.  Another assertion debunked given the statistics on movies 567 movies made in 2004 and 1038 in 2008, almost doubling inside of 4 years and still increasing.

I’ll give you that if movie tickets continue to go up every year then revenues should go up every year but you can’t really say that in this kind of economy.  Bottom line Hollywood made more money last year than the year before and the year before that.

The segment also delved into the role Bit torrent plays into illegal downloading and then cutting to a guy saying, “what we have done for 15 years is not put in any speed bumps, any technological blocks in the way of individuals so that the conclusion that the younger generation in particular draws is that if it’s so easy it cant be wrong.”

Well yes it is easy, people can choose to share anything they want on Bit torrent and if they choose to share or download things illegally it is on the government and the copyright holders to find a solution that does not intrude on the openness of the internet. The blocks and speed bumps the guy interviewed in 60 minutes is advocating sound a lot like bandwidth throttling and packet sniffing, things which go against the principles of net neutrality.

While there are millions of Bittorrent users out there, I only know about 3 people who could use Bittorrent effectively enough to download music, movies and the like. So if it’s so easy and so popular, why don’t I know more people that do it? Why can they use iPhones and computers but have no idea how to use Bittorrent even after I wrote an article on it?

I digress, the real focus here is on 60 Minutes and it’s one sided affair with File Sharing and the Motion Picture Industry.  There were a few facts thrown in about how the movie Wolverine was leaked and still did extremely well at the box office but overall there was not a peep from anyone on the opposing side of issue of illegal downloading.  Further, the “so called facts” that they gave didn’t coincide with any of the generally accepted statistics reported all over the internet.

I wonder how much money CBS makes off of Movie Advertisements a year?  Could this be yet another sacrifice of journalism for advertising dollars?  The whole thing to me seemed like a propaganda piece for the MPAA, chock full of bogus facts and subjective estimations.

Maybe more people would go to see movies if 90% of them were not lacking in substance, didn’t recycle old stories, didn’t remake old movies or have plots which are so horribly obvious as to the outcome that all you really needed to see was the previews.

What about the film-makers who are using file sharing technology to get their movies seen by the masses or the ones exploring new business models like some in the music business are. Let’s not talk to the copyright professionals or consumer advocates who render baseless most of the MPAA’s claims 60 Minutes. That wouldn’t be a balanced approach to the issue, would it?

P.S: Maybe if Steven Soderbergh didn’t put out pieces of crap like The Girlfriend Experience people wouldn’t walk out of the movie theater requesting their money back like me.

Glenn Beck is an Asshole

I just farted.
Pull My Finger America.

By: Billy BeerSlugger

Just because I rip into left wing ego case Keith Olbermann doesn’t mean I can’t flip the script and call it like i see it on a so-called conservative talk show host.  Glenn Beck of Fox News is also part of the partisan, Jerry Springeresque impasse we seem to be stuck at in terms of the sensationalism, manufactured outrage and just plain bullshit that has clogged up the airwaves of late.

I’m not sure where Glenn Beck came from or why he’s a credible but whomever is signing his paychecks should take a good hard look in the mirror. I have been flipping through the channels lately and found him to be most annoying, abrasive and not really making much sense.  Using props of various kinds to prove his points, spouting about historical/political facts that do and do not have relevance to the situations of today. I think he’s cried on air 4 or 5 times so far and while that may have been to garner more attention and make himself seemingly more of a patriot because he cares for his country it’s been as believable as the Terrel Owens “That’s My Quarterback” interview.

I remember the first time I saw him on TV he was interviewing a lady and he was talking about how much he hates compact fluorescent light bulbs because he didn’t like how they made him look in the mirror.  He brought up a great point that at the time NBC was running a “Green” campaign and doing Public Service Announcement’s for CFL’s and cutting back on energy consumption while NBC’s parent company General Electric makes those lightbulbs. However, marginalizing energy consumption on the part of how you look in the mirror is the exact opposite of how American’s should be thinking.

This week I saw him stand by a red phone begging the White House to call him, erratically prancing around and acting like a school kid who just got multiple wedgies (queue crying).  I don’t get it, every once in a couple months he comes up with a somewhat credible news story or uncovers some far-left tie to a White House appointed position and plays off of that for another 3 months while giving everyone his whacked ass view of his “America”  during the mean time.

While I genuinely believe that Glenn Beck is trying to do good for his country in his head, the way he is going about doing it is not only misguided and ineffective but also extremely dangerous in it’s subjective and one-sided nature.  Yes there are problems in America, there have always been problems in America and there will always be problems in America.  We don’t live in a Utopia and you cannot please everyone all the time. I can appreciate some of his views on Healthcare, government takeover of the Auto industry and have grown weary of bigger and bigger government as it acquires more and more of America.  Notwithstanding, just because you are talking louder and throwing a temper tantrum doesn’t make you right and actually serves to diminish the message you are trying to send.

It’s hilarious that the people that say the most outrageous things are given the bigger pulpits to shout from when real journalists are relegated to page 18 of the newspaper and don’t have a TV show because the objective truth isn’t good for ratings.  It’s partly the fault of the American public for consuming this crap but more so the fault of the media conglomerates and advertisers who effectively put these wind bags on the air. Yes it’s a capitalistic society and I understand making sensible news profitable is hard if not impossible but there has to be another way right?

Media Conglomerates

By: Billy BeerSlugger

I get really weary of these media conglomerates the bigger and bigger they get.

Clear Channel.

  • 900+ Radio Stations
  • Formerly owned 40+ TV stations
  • Owns numerous outdoor advertising billboards and Taxi Cab displays.

Analysis: You can’t turn a radio station dial without every other station being owned by Clear Channel.  You can’t miss billboards they own if you travel on major highways. If you live in a metropolitan area you have seen news and sports scores on top of taxi cabs.

Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp

  • HarperCollins book publishing
  • Elektra Records catalog
  • More than 150 Newspapers in Australia, Fiji, Papua New Guinea, UK and Ireland and the United States.
  • Around 30 Magazines including GQ and Vouge.
  • 20th Century Fox (Film) and various other motion picture related entites
  • FOX Broadcasting Networks including FOX, Fox Business, News, Sports etc.
  • Fox International owns 120 channels around the world.
  • Social Network MySpace
  • Other online interests include (film review site),,

Analysis: Murdoch has his hands in pretty much everything. You’re not going to read an upper echelon newspaper in print or online that Murdoch doesn’t own. Many argue his Fox News network caters to a Republican agenda. It’s nice to own the biggest film rating website when your company makes movies. Rupert’s MySpace status says “Mogul”.

Walt Disney: Here’s what’s in the Mouses’ house.

  • ABC Television Network  has 226 affiliated stations reaching 99 percent of all U.S. television households.
  • ESPN and their channels.
  • Disney Channel, SOAPnet, A&E, the History Channel, the Biography Channel
  • Disney owns 277 radio stations in the United States through it’s stake in Citadel Broadcasting Corp.
  • 6 Magazines including ESPN the magazine. Marvel Comics and their catalog of charaters.
  • Hyperion Books (publishing)
  • Touchstone Pictures, Miramax Films, Pixar and a host of Buena Vista companies.
  • The Disney internet group includes,, among others.

Analysis: Mickey and ESPN are pretty big.  ABC reaches just about everyone in the U.S. They will keep making movies with moneymaker Pixar and new acquisition Marvel Comics to just about corner the Comic Superhero market. Why does Disney control and I was always a bigger fan of Donald Duck.

Viacom / CBS Corp.

  • TV Stations include: MTV, MTV2, Nickelodeon,VH1, Spike TV, CMT, Comedy Central, Palladia, BET, Showtime.
  • Paramount Pictures including: Dreamworks, MTV Films, Nickelodeon Movies.
  •,,,,, (49%).
  • 140 radio stations
  • Publishing includes Kaplan, Pocket Books, Simon & Schuster, The Free Press, The Touchstone, Fireside Group.
  • CBS Network consists of 29 stations. CW Network (50%).
  • Video Game Developer Harmonix of Guitar Hero and Rock Band.

Analysis: I linked Viacom and CBS Corp together because even though they split up in 2005 after merging in 1999, Sumner Redstone still controls 71% of the voting stock in both companies. The influence MTV has on the youth of America turning them into mindless consumers is amazing.  Shows on MTV end now and they roll a Beatles Rock Band clip during the credits (Subliminal Commercial).  Palladia is actually pretty awesome and should be called Music Television.  I’m not sure who has more power at any given time: Sumner Redstone or Rupert Murdoch?


  • HBO, Cinemax, CNN, TBS, Warner Bros. Television Group, Cartoon Network, Turner Classic Movies
  • Warner Bros. Pictures, New Line Cinema, Castle Rock, Village Roadshow Pictures.
  • DC Comics (Batman + Superman)
  • People, Time, Sports Illustrated, Fortune among a host of other magazines.
  • AOL,, AOL Instant Messenger
  • Warner Music Group – one of the big 4 labels.

Analysis: After betting the farm on AOL and it not working out they have fallen off a bit.  Time Warner posted a $16.03 billion loss for the final quarter of 2008 which may lead it to sell of portions of it’s assets.

General Electric:

  • NBC, CNBC, MSNBC, Bravo, Sci Fi Channel, Telemundo, USA, Oxygen
  • NBC Universal Television Distribution, Universal Media Studios
  • NBC Universal (80% ownership): Universal Pictures, Focus Features, Rogue Pictures. Universal has production agreements with Imagine Entertainment, Jersey Films, Tribeca Films, the Kennedy/Marshall Company, Playtone Company, Strike Entertainment, Type A Films and Working Title Films among others.

Analysis: Just read that Comcast Corp could be buying the NBC/Universal entertainment division from GE. This lead me to write this article. NBC has fallen off after the loss of must see TV, NBA games and Monday Night Football. Universal does come out with a lot of movies though. Telemundo always has hot chicks on there.

Overall Analysis:

With such a small amount of companies controlling such a vast amount of media it’s a wonder everything we see, read and hear on radio, newspapers and TV is so homogeneous.  When someone like Sumner Redstone or Rupert Murdoch controls a vast empire of media, if a person, organization/corporation or member of government could persuade them to report the news a certain way or handle specific stories in a particular light or influence them whatsoever from a journalism standpoint this country is seriously fucked.  Knowledge is power and if you are controlling the knowledge or twisting the knowledge a certain way for hundreds of millions of people you can influence elections, shape public opinion and government policy. We as Americans are guaranteed free speech and press but I don’t think that’s what we’re getting from our media conglomerates.  When so much money relies on advertising these companies are effectively at the will of the advertisers and in some ways, the government which has found ways to censor news without effectively taking a newscast off the air.

Democracy is only as good as the level of credible journalism in that Democracy.  I found a worthy cause for this issue calling for more diversity in media. Find out ways you can get involved at

Look for more info on these conglomerates on

One of the best speeches on Media I’ve ever heard.

Why I Dislike Keith Olbermann

I'm smarter than you.

By: Billy BeerSlugger

I never really had a problem with Keith Olbermann on Sportscenter when he teamed with Dan Patrick to put a soundtrack of zingers and one-liners to sports highlights.  He smiled, cracked jokes and seemed generally likable though still slightly smug.

I don’t really have a problem with Keith having his left wing show on MSNBC either.  He can have his “Worst Person In The World” and try to pick apart Bill O’Reilly or his Republican/Conservative opponent du jour every night and I’m fine with that, he’s got his right to do that within reason and I won’t be above saying he’s right from time to time.  He seems to have a general care about the country and it’s citizens which is a very respectable trait and one I happen to share with him.

What I cannot stand is Olbermann being on the Sunday Night Football panel.  I realize his background in sports broadcasting but if there’s one thing i don’t like mixed in with my sports it’s bullshit politics.  Not that he brings up politics on Sunday Night Football, but just knowing his priggish, self-righteous ass is a mouthpiece for a left sided network pains me to no end.  For the record I would hate to see Glenn Beck or Bill O’Reilly or Rush Limbaugh as an anchor on a sportscast as well.  You do remember how long Limbaugh lasted as an ESPN commentator in 2003?

You don’t see Chris Berman have a show and plug a Republican agenda or Bob Costas stray from sports leaning stories on his show. You have to pick what you are, sportscaster or political pundit; there’s no gray zone here.  I don’t care if a sportscaster comes out in support of an issue or political candidate but don’t make a whole show about it and further, don’t be a condescending asshole about it.

Olbermann sits himself behind a desk on weeknights and pretends to be a modern day Edward R. Murrow (he won the Murrow award in 2003).  However he does it with a sharp tongue and an “i’m smarter than you”, egotistic tone that makes me want to throw my laptop off my desk.  I won’t pretend to write as eloquent as Keith or tear into an issue with the same smarts and vigor but give me a staff of capable people and a full time salary and I have no problem devoting 10+ hours a day into pumping out content that’s informative and stimulating.

What makes Olbermann so smart anyway?  He claims to have gone to an Ivy League school (Cornell), however, he graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications arts from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, not the School of Arts and Sciences which is the Ivy league one.

In an interview with Playboy Magazine Olbermann was quotes to say:

“My Ivy League education taught me how to cut corners, skim books and take an idea and write 15 pages on it, and also how to work all day at the Cornell radio station and never actually go to class.”

Obviously lying about going to the Ivy League Cornell isn’t a big deal to folks like you and I, but for a guy who wastes valuable airtime to nit pick at Rep. Charlie Rangel for saying ‘inferred” instead of “implied” it seems relavent to nit pick at him.  Oh, wowzers Keith, got him on that one.

Seriously though, tone and inflection are big parts of broadcasting and no doubt were covered during his matriculation at non-Ivy league Cornell studying Communication Arts.  You would think he would have taken from that education that if you come off as a pompous arse and a know it all that you would actually have to back it up with a little more than a Communications degree and several stints as a sportscaster spouting lines like “Booya”! Where is the credibility with this guy?  Half the time he’s making inane grammar corrections or subjective comments on subjective comments from Senators, Representatives or right wing personalities. 30% of the time he’s dealing in absolute bullshit and the other 20% is reserved for stuff that actually does matter whether it’s biased or not.

I’m not saying that Olbermann is a bad person because he’s better than most of the talking heads out there but I wonder sometimes if he’s at least subconsciously trying to be the smartest guy in the room nation to show up the kids who repeatedly stole his lunch money in grade school.  That’s been my experience at least, either the overzealous person is overcompensating because they are constantly dealing with their own insecurities which can include a host of things including height, weight, perception of beauty or lack of breast or penis size.

Basically he’s the guy sitting at the end of the bar drinking alone because of his lack of people skills. He’s pissed off all his friends and most of his acquaintances who aren’t blinded by his B-list stardom.

But then again… i could be wrong.

Taking a Dump on Mass Media

One World at the Will of The Advertisers
One World at the Will of The Advertisers

By: Billy BeerSlugger

A lot of the media is making a big deal over President Obama’s trip to Copenhagen in an effort to lure the Olympics to Chicago. Seriously, who gives a shit.  If no one is going to make a big deal over his going on The Late Show with Dave Letterman then why is this a big deal?  There’s a lot of bullshit coming at us from all angles.

Yes the President should be focused on bettering the country and the economy and the wars and all that stuff but it’s not like there’s not a computer on Air Force one.  If thousands of people take the train to work everyday for an extended period of time and get work done don’t you think that the friggin President of The United States would be able to pull off the same?

With the 24 hour news networks trying to fill time this is what they decide to poke Obama on? There’s a poll on it, the news networks have a 4 panel discussion on why they think it is or is not a good idea. Again, who gives a fuck? Then you have the millions of real internet news sources as well as the fake ones (like debating the shit out of it too.

Everything the President does is held under a microscope and rightfully so but does everything need to be debated to death?  Does absolutely everything need to be reported on? The 24 hour Cable News Networks much like the 24 Hour Cable Sports Networks absolutely beat things to death that 5 or 6 years ago wouldn’t have seen airtime.  It’s getting to the point where in the future we may get Newsflashes that Obama is taking a dump.  Just like we got updates on Mike Vick being in pads and practicing or Mike Vick getting into a game and throwing two passes and running twice for a total of 7 yards.  Sportscenter usually shows stats on people who do well or at least actually start the game, but not in Mike Vick’s case, it doesn’t matter what he does or if he gets in the game at all they still report on him. I remember back in the late 90’s when ESPN would give you Dick Trickle’s back of the pack finish in a NASCAR race just because he had a funny name.  It’s getting to that point where a player can be an absolute non-factor in a games and still get mainstream media attention.

Now if you have read any of my prior stories on the Mass Media you know I’m not a big fan of what’s going on.  The news (the real news) was supposed to be fair, impartial and as objective as possible. Presenting all the facts and letting the audience decide which way to lean on a particular issue.  The ABC’s and CBS’s and NBC’s of the world used to be pretty good at this but now no one watches the World/US News on Prime Time Newtork TV or it’s just not a money maker therefore Networks have dumped these programs in favor of cookie cutter reality TV shows. It’s sad.

It’s gotten to the point that I’ve found a couple of internet sites that are trying to correct that, even if they’re not exactly mainstream.

Pro Publica is a site I really like:

It describes itself as “an independent non-profit newsroom that produces investigative journalism in the public interest.”  Their full time staff investigates stories and then gives them away for free to mainstream news outlets like 60 Minutes, CNN, USA Today, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times and others.  Actually anyone is free to republish their stories so long as they are credited with the work and none of the content is changed (something I’m considering putting on BeerSlugger if I read a particularly good article). Pretty cool if you ask me and they have a multitude of Pulitzer Prize winning authors on staff. If I were a top flight journo trying to make a difference in the world without selling out to Corporate America this would be on a short list of places I’d like to work.

Another website I came across is, also a non-profit. This website brings together citizens, journalists and news publishers and allows you to pitch a particular story to readers of the site who may donate money to see the story come to fruition and actually get published. The principal of crowd-funding and or crowd-sourcing are used here in a sort of grass roots effort to get better journalism to the masses. Also a pretty cool concept.

Overall, things aren’t going to get any better in my eyes in terms of how mass media handles and decides what is news and what isn’t. I already get 90% of my news from the Internet and I can see that number growing as TV News continues to be dominated by inane pundits and superficial stories.

Are you ready to do the same? Dan Rather is rather fed up with the bullshit on TV News and he’s taking CBS to court about it.


“We have very large corporate interests working with powerful political interests to manipulate the news and the people who report the news, whatever their political persuasion. I don’t think the American people want them, and what I have been seeking to do in this trial is to bring out the facts.” Getting Social

By: Billy BeerSlugger

We’d like to thank the many BeerSlugger’s out there that support our site and read our crappily written articles.

Being that this is the 22nd century I figured we’d bring BeerSlugger out of the dark ages and allow you guys to use all your little crazy social networks, social bookmarks and all that other bullshit.

So if you’ve got Facebook you can share an article you like by clicking on the icon at the bottom of the post. If you use Digg you can help reach the masses by submitting an article you like by clicking on the dig icon at the bottom of the post. Same goes for Reddit and Yahoo Buzz.

If you are a Technorati user there is an icon on the right column that you can click to make one of your favorite blogs.

We’re not really sure what any of this stuff does but we’ve looked at other blogs and they have the same shit. So in and attempt to be homogeneous and banal we have bowed to the peer pressure, emails and comments and added these features to

It’s Friday so I’m going to get drunk now. Enjoy your weekend and thanks for logging on.


William J. BeerSlugger

Valley Swim Club Racism

By: Billy BeerSlugger

You may have heard this story about a group of 60 kids from a day camp in Philadelphia which was bussed to the Valley Swim Club in Huntingdon Valley PA only to be told not to come back a day later after an emergency board meeting by the swim club.

The story is all over the news and reached national levels even moving Actor/Director Tyler Perry of the Tyler Perry movies to pay for a 3 day stay in Disneyland. There’s no denying that the kids in the day camp are primarily black and that the clientele in the swim club is primarily white. There’s where the story comes from; the sensationalism of racism.

Now the swimming club says they had legitimate crowd concerns which may or may not be true. One of the campers,  Dymire Baylor, commented, saying, “I heard this lady, she was like, ‘Uh, what are all these black kids doing here?’ She’s like, ‘I’m scared they might do something to my child.” Two other campers reported strange comments, prompting one to ask, “Am I too black to go into the pool?”.

Well you might just chalk that up to what Obama might call being a “typical white person“. As in there is an inherent reaction to white people that’s “been bred into our experiences that don’t go away and sometimes come out in the wrong way and that’s just the nature of race in our society”.  (And he’s right we do have to break through it).

But I digress, the issue here is that the summer camp paid $1,900 to have the 60 kids go to the pool every Monday for 90 minutes for the duration of the summer. I did some math and it essentially breaks down to $2.64 per visit. Now the swim club supposedly received multiple complaints from members leading to the emergency board meeting that terminated the Day Camp membership. I think the economics of this decision are pretty easy. A swimming membership for the summer for one person can range from $300 to $350 in the area for a single person and a family of four can be around $600 – $650. So from an economics standpoint if you lose 5.5 singular memberships or 3 family’s of four due to the kids being there the swim club takes a bit of a bath.  Not to mention dealing with the other “typical white” people who don’t relinquish their membership but complain constantly.

This is all conjecture but I’m thinking from a economical and “dealing with bullshit” standpoint, you say let’s give the kids back their money, keep our “typical white” members happy that are our bread and butter. You cite crowd concerns/safety and that’s your alibi.  Seems to work for me except maybe the alibi wasn’t airtight and you didn’t count on the national news coverage on your ass and the racist label hung over your Swim Club sign.

There really was no winning angle to be played here. Either lose money and reputation with your members and let the kids stay the summer or refund the money and take whatever the parents, media and Tyler Perry throw at you. It’s sad but the real wrong move was to invite the group at all.  Every private swim club board in America has now been served up a lesson in how not to get into a Public Relations nightmare and possibly a $50,000 fine; don’t go out of your way to try and do a good deed and give some underprivileged youngsters a place to swim. So in effect what may seem like a win against racism and anti-civil rights actually just made it ten times harder to get underprivileged kids into nicer private swim clubs. It’s a double edged sword but it looks like the kids are at least going to get $50,000 minus lawyer fees.  Hopefully it all goes right to a college education fund, I could get my Michael Phelps on with that scenario. Of course that’s not going to happen.