As a football fan living outside America I am having a bit of a chuckle at the union and the National Football Players Association thinking they are ahead in the bargaining game—so far ahead they reason that the general public will make sure these millionaires from a game are not replaceable. Folly, sheer folly in it's most arrogant and ridiculous form.
What these guys need to understand is—the Golden Rule—the ones with the Gold make the rules!
They joined a league, operated for generations before them, owned and propagated by owners who went through much to build the league to where it is. The players are simply commodities and should be. Have any of them built a telecommunications, oilfield, automotive or any other form of industry? Every single owner, other than our own dear publicly owned Packers, are owned by billionaires whom have made, and continue to make, money contributing to society in worthwhile manners.
The players? Not so much. When one looks at the hard cold facts, probably 50 percent would never have even been admitted to college if they were not phenomenal physical specimens. How many would have careers that the taxpayer, yes, the taxpayers, pay for if they were not gifted athletes? If they actually deserved to be auditing the books of the people who pay them, perhaps they would have alternate careers already lined up and not be so horrified at losing the only jobs they are qualified for. Just what did our taxpayer money on scholarships pay for? Gun toting, sexual abusing, arrogant folks with nothing but physical skills to contribute to society.
The Liberal press is 100 percent more or less behind the players. There are minor dissenters, a few who say both sides are unreasonable. Why? Those interviews and the soundbites or column inches pay their salaries. If the press darlings disappear so do they with their vested interest in the players. Thus do not believe much of what you hear or read in the press or on the networks.
For Packer fans this is a double edged sword. Nobody can take the Super Bowl away until they play again, but looking at all the team's situations entering this mess, probably no-one can take it away next season if and when they do play. As a miniscule owner..... I want the players to get back to work!
As a very, very, very, very, very, very—enough already—owner of the Packers you, and every other fan should be absolutely appalled by the behavior of the players. They have access to jobs that precious few can even contemplate. They make money that only the top three percent of American society can fathom. Quick thought, at league minimum for three seasons, the lowest of the low paid National Football League players will make more than 90 percent of the "fans" will make in a 25 year career. Most make more than winning the Lotto!
I am a very reasonably paid oilfield engineer. In my 35 years, I may have grossed the value of the first year of any second contract, or about the where the 20th draft pick makes before he plays a single down in that elite league. The top 10 picks are paid more than I will ever dream of making before they enter their very first training camp. I have worked for years to keep the lights on and the send my kids to University successfully. I have never had a felony conviction and at this stage of my life it seems highly unlikely.
From over here in the middle east, where it was necessary for me to go to make an above average income, my thought is this. The lack of an NFL will really not affect my life that much. In North America there are a very minor few who will really be affected. Bad luck to be in the entertainment business, a very overcrowded entertainment business. If the NFL does not happen at all in 2011, or even 2012 how many fans will have their livelihoods threatened?
What these spoiled overpaid athletes need to realize is that they have very specialized skills which could be evaporated by their own belief in their infallibility. They cannot get jobs like they have elsewhere. The owners, by and large, are not personally screwed if the NFL dies. The players have zero shot at setting up a competitive alternative, because if they have the remotest dream that their litigation can actually cause financial hardship on enough owners to create a crack, they are on crack.
Like it or not the players screwed the pooch. If the ownership screws them until this bunch of prima-donnas are replaced by kids in high school when the owners still have lots of money to set up an new league, so be it—they brought it on themselves. De Smith and the hardliners do not understand the most basic of tenets. Do not bite the hand that feeds you.
They bit the hand that feeds them, and going back to the very top of the article, the golden rule. These guys do not have the gold, they do not make the rules and really, the world does not need the NFL.
The owners make the league possible and TV can and will fill the spots. The players are commodities and it is not a sellers market. If they throw away what they had, and all is cancelled, and the owners de-certify the league—Armageddon and big oooooooooops setting up a new one. THAT would be a court battle I would like to see as one of the beat writers put out.