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And how did your team do this weekend?

For a long time now I’ve been rooting for the Neoliberals.  I know, I don’t talk much about them on this blog, where my commentaries on sports have been confined to posts on hockey and the occasional stray comment on baseball or golf or Penn State women’s volleyball.  But I’ve been following the Neoliberals ever since they started out as an expansion franchise in 1973, and it’s been most gratifying.  They had some modest success in the New York area at first, taking advantage of the city’s financial crisis in 1975 and instituting some dynamic rules modifications that were truly game-changing.  But it wasn’t until the advent of free agency in 1980 that the team really took off.  Since then, they’ve been on a 30-year winning streak, and some people—including me!—now consider them unstoppable.

Their success can be attributed in part to their innovative “Rewarding Excellence” program, which concentrates the distribution of resources to top performers.  The Neoliberals are in it to win it, year in and year out, and that’s why they’re not wasting time and money on poor or middling talent.

Perhaps most impressive, they’ve beaten their traditional rivals, Social Welfare State, for thirty consecutive years (often in routs), emphatically putting an end to State’s decades of dominance in head-to-head matchups.  Even in years when SW State seemed to gain back some ground, in 1993 and 2009, the Neolibs’ smothering “Third Way” defense managed to hold their opponents to minimal, short-term gains and merely symbolic victories.

Still, they’ve had their setbacks now and then, like any team.  Their deregulation campaign has always featured a strong offense, but occasionally an oil rig will explode or a financial system will collapse or a biosphere will degrade here and there.  Thankfully, after seeing Gasland last night, I’m reassured that the team’s strong bipartisan support will ensure that high-energy players will never again be tied down by pesky nanny-state “holding” and “interference” regulations.  Yes, the player pensions are still too high, and the league probably needs to appoint a blue-ribbon commission to look into alternative, personalized retirement systems.  And the minimum salary and child-labor laws aren’t ideal, since they inhibit franchise growth and recruiting, respectively.  But I have every faith that the Neolibs will overcome these obstacles just as they’ve triumphed over everything else, and find some way to combine 21st-century technology with 19th-century capitalism.

The Neoliberals: because it’s fun to root for a winner for a change.

Posted by on 10/04 at 05:17 AM
  1. Agreed. The NeoLibs make losers out of the rest of us. I think about switching allegiances and rooting for the winner. Here I am on another gray Monday morning with the sour taste of another Sunday’s loss in my mouth. My tattered “Go Reds! Beat State!” jersey lying on the floor next to the bed in a pile. If only I could muster the energy and the excellence to be worthy of the winning side.

    Posted by  on  10/04  at  06:54 AM
  2. Don’t worry about the energy-and-excellence deficit, Chris—it’s true, only two to three percent of Neolib fans actually see any material benefit from being on the winning team, but that doesn’t mean we can’t cheer them on anyway.  The whole point is to grow the fandom, even (or especially!) among those who aren’t really “worthy” of it.

    Posted by  on  10/04  at  07:58 AM
  3. NeoLiberals, pschaw. Out here in Nebraskistan we root for NeoNonLiberal Democrats like Ben Nelson. After surviving a Senate challenge in 2006 from a self-made scion who spent $15 million of his own money garnering 200,000 some votes, Senator Nelson is now foursquare in favor of extending the Bush tax cuts for scions everywhere. Never again should a scion be denied national office because of too little money to spend on a campaign.

    See you east coasters at our upcoming proletariat football and women’s volleyball matches in the new improved Big “Ten”.

    Posted by  on  10/04  at  08:44 AM
  4. Yes, the Scions are a good strong team too, bdb.  It seems like that’s been true for generations ... weird, isn’t it?  It’s almost like some kind of “dynasty” or something.

    Oh, and it looks like we’ll cross ten million sometime this morning.  Not sure how I got 60,000 visitors in one week—probably by asking people to stay away.  Well, I’m not shutting down the blog just yet.  I’ve got a few more things to do around here.

    Posted by  on  10/04  at  09:31 AM
  5. Let’s not forget the innovative partnership the Neolibs have formed with their erstwhile competitors, the Neocons, in forming new leagues overseas. The Iraqi Freedom and Private Enterprise Leage (IFPEL) has surged toward success, and sources tell me the next six months will be pivotal. A temporary slowdown in the Afghan Private Security Contractor League (APSCA) has been reported, but black waters lie ahead for Commissioner Karzai if the teams don’t take the field next season. Poor negotiating with owners in this league can be a real killer!

    Posted by John Protevi  on  10/04  at  09:41 AM
  6. Not sure how I got 60,000 visitors in one week—probably by asking people to stay away.  Well, I’m not shutting down the blog just yet.

    Yes!  My reverse psychology maneuver worked!  I begged the commentariat to minimize their page views, and they responded by posting 862 comments about Fresca.  Such huge money-making traffic inevitably proved irresistible to a humanities professor seeking yet another solid-gold wastebasket into which to ceremoniously discard job applications from qualified conservatives.  (The previous wastebaskets don’t get emptied out very readily, since Penn State’s gay Muslim illegal immigrant janitors are lazy bums, like all minimum-wage welfare cheats.) And now we are granted a reprieve.  Ha-HA-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-haaaaaHACKCHOKEGURGLE

    ("Friend" me on Phlegmbook for the full experience)

    Posted by  on  10/04  at  11:38 AM
  7. For me the problem is choosing who, among the Neoliberal teams, to support.  Do i choose the bottom end of the 2% or the top .5%?  This is very troubling.  For example, the Neoliberal Foosball Leaguers have drawn lines of demarcation between these two extremes in their recent proposals.

    The players currently get 59.6 percent of designated NFL revenues, a number agreed to in the 2006 CBA. The owners say that’s too much, arguing that they have huge debts from building stadiums and starting up the NFL Network and other ventures, making it impossible to be profitable.

    The NFL generates nearly $8 billion in revenues annually, with about $1 billion going to operating expenses. The owners get about 40 percent of the rest, but they want about $1.3 billion more before the players get their cut, and they’d like two more regular-season games to get more money out of the networks for everyone.

    Well that “everyone” is a little disingenuous.  They don’t want rookies to be paid any bonuses for two years, they do want a standardized rookie salary, they are not sure about paying for the long term health of the teams unless the individual plays three seasons (what is a concussion anyway).
    This makes it very difficult to decide for whom to cheer: the multi-multi-millionaire owners with the billion dollar stadiums, or the multi-millionaire players with so many hot cars?

    Phlegmbook, the social network with only one box of kleenex.

    Posted by  on  10/04  at  02:28 PM
  8. This makes it very difficult to decide for whom to cheer: the multi-multi-millionaire owners with the billion dollar stadiums, or the multi-millionaire players with so many hot cars?

    Since the vast majority of players are multi-thousandaires, that makes it easy for me. And besides, it makes Al Michaels cry, and his tears are nigh unto ambrosia for me.

    Posted by John Protevi  on  10/04  at  03:16 PM
  9. and find some way to combine 21st-century technology with 19th-century capitalism.

    If it weren’t for shock doctrine, I’d have no doctrine at all.

    Actually my gloss on Bush the Lesser was that his only personal agenda was to look after the interests of the incompetent sons of rich people.

    Posted by  on  10/05  at  09:09 AM
  10. Well personally I blame the revelation of massive doping on what I like to call the StateCap team at their XX. Congress for the NeoLibs winning streak. It just demoralized the SW State Ultras and that led to the collapse of the team.

    Posted by  on  10/05  at  01:12 PM
  11. When i consider that the Neoliberal Bocci Association world champions has the same team salary as most of the Neoliberal Foosball teams, me thinks that it is better to play Bocci ball than Foosball.  Solid gold wastebaskets are a dime a dozen in the front offices for those guys. 

    It is clear that female Neoliberal officials know their place by standing far behind their men in most leagues.  This is not to be confused of course with the Woefullyinadequate Neoliberal Bocci Association, with team salaries set purposefully low (at middle class levels), thus making sure that labor must work two or three jobs.  Such an environment insures that Neoliberals can feel good knowing that the professoriat is being paid well (regardless of reality).

    Posted by  on  10/05  at  04:19 PM
  12. Since the vast majority of players are multi-thousandaires, that makes it easy for me. And besides, it makes Al Michaels cry, and his tears are nigh unto ambrosia for me.

    Boy howdy!

    Because I’d like to experience actual victory at least every rare now and again, I sometime do wish I could simply flip a switch in my brain and get on board with Team Neolib. But I just...can’t...do it. I attended one of their evening pre-game “pep rallies” once, and it was an absolute horror show. Literally. I guess no one told them they were supposed to burn effigies, not actual community activist, union organizers, and womens’ rights advocates. And how come the universities never crack down on that kind of behavior?

    Posted by  on  10/05  at  05:07 PM
  13. They even survive when their point-quarterforward Matt Yglesias keeps seeming to cut his hand on some glass, or fall out of bed, or trip on the stairs with some groceries.  He always makes it back for the playoffs.

    Posted by Capt. Trollypants  on  10/05  at  11:35 PM
  14. Christian, it’s always about the XX Congress, isn’t it?  Look, mistakes were made.  There was doping, and then there were purges.  But the important things is that State needs to get back in the game now.

    And what “universities” would be cracking down on Neolib pep rallies, O. Girl?  You mean the ones that used to be funded by State?  They’re all closed now, but a Phoenix has arisen from their ashes.  Neolibs FTW!

    Posted by Michael  on  10/06  at  11:18 AM
  15. Phoenix: ITT Tech for the middling classes.

    XX Congress: as differentiated from the XIX Commonwealth Club meeting, wherein the alleged masses made a mess of the matter.

    Posted by  on  10/06  at  02:38 PM
  16. I’m a Reds fan, so, you know, not well.  Or the Bengals, either.

    Posted by  on  10/11  at  05:00 PM
  17. Who knew that the Neo-Liberal Bocciballers would decide that they pay out too much money in salaries and would choose to decimate both, or and either, those salaries or whole teams?

    Posted by  on  10/23  at  03:43 PM
  18. Root all you like, but they’ll never draft you. You ain’t got what it takes.

    Posted by  on  10/31  at  11:32 PM
  19. They are all over paid anyway....

    Posted by Pressure Washing Tampa Florida  on  05/18  at  10:59 AM
  20. yes they paid all

    Posted by Sexo  on  06/30  at  04:29 PM
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  25. Neoliberals wanted to limit government, but the upshot of their policies has been a huge expansion in the power of the state. Deregulating the financial system left banks free to speculate, and they did so with reckless enthusiasm. The result was a build-up of toxic assets that threatened the entire banking system.

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  29. We have a similar situation here in Germany. It’s all about the money in sport.

    Posted by Strategic Web Design  on  09/10  at  04:30 AM
  30. Haha! Good old politics.

    Posted by Sean  on  09/18  at  04:40 AM
  31. How did your team do this weekend? My Fulham got over their travel sickness with an away win and all of our divisions had some lively action .

    Posted by Nancy Malhotra  on  10/23  at  02:47 AM
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