Boomtown Blues Trash Talk

As the kids are wont to say, that was a hell of a week, and I’m only talking about Thursday and Friday. Also, too, there seems to be a second IC whistleblower on the horizon, per the NY Times. Things are happening fast, and in real time.

First up is the collegiate athletics. By the way, I honestly think all the Fair Pay to Play acts are, well, not good. They will give a very select small few rights to earn big money, and be seen as different by all the other college athletes that will never benefit. It is a caste system, and empowerment of the 1% off of Wall Street and onto the NCAA landscape. That is not a good thing.

Here is a piece by Michael McCann at the newly decimated Sports Illustrated, that I actually agree with. If Fair Pay to Play is to be enacted, it is absolutely necessary that it be done on a national basis, not a bogus piecemeal state by state basis, as some over aggressive voices are pushing. If you are going to do it, do it right. Join the national effort, not just try to make a name for yourself in your particular state.

Fair Pay to Play Acts are really ratifying that only a select few will ever profit off of the toils of the many. And the only recipients will be, with very few exceptions, in only football and basketball. The theory is not as evil as the result it will create. Irrespective of that merits discussion though, the siren song of state fame seems to be stronger for some noisy advocates than joining in a legitimate national plan. Shocker!

Alright, back to actual college football. It is a rather weak week for interesting games. Iowa at Michigan may be one of the best,and that is pretty telling. The best game is, arguably, Auburn at Florida. Jim White’s Gators have been a bit of a surprise, while Auburn was maybe larger on the preseason radar. The game is in the Swamp, which is huge for Florida. Auburn seems for real this year though, on both sides of the ball. That is the one game I will be truly watching. Mostly a whole lot of nothing after that this week.

As to the Pros: The Squawks beat the Rams in a great Thursday Night game. Off the top of my head, I think the Thursday Night football this year is already of a better quality than past years. Scribe said Vontaze Burfict should be banned from the NFL. I did not necessarily disagree, because his miscreant conduct goes back to college, and he played a couple of years here for the Sun Devils. He is a bad character, banning was arguably a fair result. Instead he will be suspended for the remainder of the year.

The Patriots have a lot of injuries, but they are playing the Skins, who are simply, and totally, fucked. Washington will be starting Colt McCoy, who may actually be their best option. If the Cards and Kyler Murray cannot beat the Bungles, they may not win a game this year.

The game that may be the most interesting is Tampa Bay at New Orleans. Teddy Bridgewater is no Drew Brees, but the Saints are seriously good, and playing at their home dome. Give Jameis Winston a smidgen of credit though, he is markedly better under Bruce Arians’ tutelage. This could be an excellent game. Vikes at Gents could be interesting, even though irrelevant mostly.

In a nod to Scribe’s coming comments, the Ravens at Steelers should be very interesting. Mason Rudolph did well last week; the Ravens not so much in a blowout loss to Baker Mayfield and the Brownies. Two different styles, and two teams that really don’t like each other. Excellent!

Green Bay at Dallas you would think would be a great game. But, even though I am a lifelong Pack fan, this is a tough road to hoe. Have to favor the ‘Boys. Lastly, the MNF game of Cleveland versus Niners in Santa Clara (yeah, that is still a dumbass location for the Niners to be playing in; what a joke), could be very good. Mayfield versus Garrapolo. Both teams are really looking up this year. Edge to SF though. I think…..

This week’s music is Boomtown Blues by Bob Seger, and it is from an under-appreciated early 80’s album, The Distance. Not sure what made me think of it, I have not thrown that album on the turntable for years, but here we are. Making Thunderbirds is also a truly killer cut on The Distance.

Since blowing the whistle is all the rage currently, I am including a second Seger cut, Let It Rock, this from the much earlier Bob Seger System, and it is an old song originally credited to Edward Anderson. Thing is, Edward Anderson was an early pseudonym for the one and only Chuck Berry. Seger’s version is awesome.

Rock on folks.

167 replies
  1. P J Evans says:

    I can actually understand the desire of athletes to get some of that money that the schools and the NCAA are getting. The contract the NCAA requires them to sign is entirely one-sided: the athlete can’t get anything from whatever is sold with their name on it; the NCAA also severely restricts what they can otherwise earn.

    • bmaz says:

      The average top tier college football team has a roster of 100 to 110 (max allowed) players. So, you are in favor of 3-4 of them raking likely big money while the other 100 or so on the team get absolutely nothing? And when only those 3-4 get it in football, maybe 2-3 get it in basketball, and all other college athletes are stuck and moribund in the current NCAA system to where even relatives cannot give them air fare tickets home for holidays?

      How in the hell is that caste system fair? It is stunning how people that have spent years complaining about the inequities of the “One Percent” think this is a dandy plan. And PJ, that is not aimed at you so much as a LOT of people I have talked to on this issue. I find it all a bit boggling.

      • BobCon says:

        The main argument I see for the California law is that it will most likely spur other states to follow suit, and that is going to force the NCAA and its membber schools to address their many, many problems.

        The trouble, of course, is that the NCAA is unlikely to address its problems well. It’s going to be a big mess because students are always a secondary concern. College sports have gotten much, much too big and there really isn’t a way to fix them without radically rethinking them, and the NCAA doesn’t do radical rethinking well. They don’t do thinking well.

        • P J Evans says:

          If they’re going to be farm teams for the NFL and the NBA, they should acknowledge it. And treat the college players better.

      • P J Evans says:

        I think that the NCAA caused this problem with their we-get-all-the-benefits-forever-and-everywhere contract. Maybe there should be legal limits on the contract.

      • Martin Lydick says:

        Well I predict that those 2 or 3 “big money stars” per team are going to learn some fast lessons about team play.
        They’re going to learn to share the booty or they’re going to have very short college careers & no pro prospects as they go down to injuries.
        Oops – I was supposed to block that guy?

    • Drew says:

      Even if the state by state leveraging was all that was available, it isn’t the tiny number of ultra-premium footbasketball players that anyone should worry about. How about extending the academic portion of all sports scholarships indefinitely past the end of eligibility? Or mandating cash salary all the way down the roster of (at least) the money sports? Requiring $40K per annum for every roster player at Stanford, UCLA, Berkeley, USC, etc. would provoke an NCAA crisis much more effectively.

    • Pete T says:

      Florida is considering similar, but as in all things (usually) in Florida if it is introduced in the next session it will fail. Something usually fails twice and then the third year is the charm. Usually.

      • bmaz says:

        The guy pushing it in FL is Darren Heitner, Antonio Brown’s attorney. He is good at PR, so we shall see.

    • Dr. Cleopatra Jones says:

      There’s no question that the current system is patently unfair to players and needs to be thoughtfully addressed. But that’s the thing, there doesn’t seem to be much thought put into how to address historic inequities such as this. Solutions tend to be extremely simplistic and shortsighted to boot! I’ve seen and worked with student athlete struggles up close and personal. A significant number come from poor and working class backgrounds. Athletics are a way to pay for a college education including room & board. However, it’s damn hard to balance academics with the rigors of NCAA athletics and let’s be real, most NCAA institutions, college education is a distant second to Worst of all, once the athlete is no longer “useful” to the team because of injury, etc. they find themselves suddenly out in the cold–left to pick up the pieces of their college education on their own. It’s a very difficult transition and I dare say, many don’t make it–not because they’re incapable but because they no longer have the structure, academic guidance and social support. Worse still, some former athletes end up contending with chronic injuries that will haunt them across their lifespan. The schools aren’t footing the bill for those injuries. Further, some student athletes won’t become aware of insidious injuries like PCS until long after their college athletic career is over. What I’d like to see for student athletes:
      1. Guaranteed free college tuition, room & board. Even after career-ending injury.
      2. Emphasis on importance of college education (most athletes will NOT go Pro and many suffer career-ending injuries) and all the FREE academic support needed to ensure that athletes complete their degrees.
      3. Workshops designed for student athletes that’ll help them navigate through college and plan for post-athletic careers. Examples include, budgeting and finance, career exploration, coping with transition from athletics, and so on.
      4. **Free medical and psychological care POST- college athletics and if necessary, vocational rehabilitation.
      5. Advertising and other money-making opportunities for top college athletes AND athletes who are rocking their academics. Why shouldn’t exceptional performance be rewarded?! As long as the basic needs of all student athletes are being addressed (educationally, medically, psychologically, tuition/room/board), this shouldn’t be an issue. However, educational accomplishments of athletes should also be highlighted and rewarded.

  2. Jim White says:

    Dang. I was thinking the Gators had a real shot today, but it seems that Corso picked them, so we’re doomed.

    And come on man, again. Give some love to my Tampa Bay Rays, who beat Rosalind’s A’s in a great wild card game Wednesday.

      • Cloverbell says:

        The Gators beat Auburn at homecoming. Trump and his crew are, well, words escape me, but you get the point. The breeze from the Atlantic has cooled. Life is good.

    • Pete T says:

      Gator elementary school is over. They really need a running game – and not just unbelievable break away 60-80 yard rompers. It’s into LSU’s den next week and two weeks after that the BullDawgs come barkin’.

      I was flipping back and forth between Gators and UofM-VT (doesn’t mean a thing in the grand scheme), but UofM came back from 28 or 21 zip to tie it at 35-35. Except the comeback included a two point conversion making it 35-29 meaning, you guessed it, the 35-35 go ahead PAT clunked off the upright. You could feel the deflation at home as VT fairly easily went for the winning TD late in the 4th – 42-35

  3. BobCon says:

    Endorsement money has the possibility of benefitting some women athletes who otherwise would be shut out, in particular in Olympic sports. The impact on Title IX is somewhat sketchy, though, since it may well give athletic departments angles to shift funding to private sources which presumably may not benefit women’s sports over all. For example, teams may be able to cut men’s scholarships if there are defacto slots sponsored by endorsers, and that can give them an angle to cut scholarships to women.

    Having said that, I think the best approach to college (and high school) sports is to cap athletic budgets radically, so that they return to a much less serious level of competition — maybe three coaches, limited schedules, and small facilities.

    Then, allow any school that wants teams at the caliber of Alabama football or Duke basketball to run their teams as pro sports, with paid players, big coaching staffs, and mega stadiums and arenas — actual minor league systems instead of allegedly amateur sports. They would need to be run as businesses, with separate accounting, and schools on the hook for revenue shortfalls and capital costs clearly described and accounted for.

    The reality is that college sports put unreasonable demands on student players. They are full time jobs with serious health risks, and do not leave enough time for players to be students. Schools and the NCAA do not want to admit that it is insane to demand players travel so much, practice so much, train so much, and play so many games and still focus on their educations. The demands on time are probably 100% more than they were in the 70s, and those demands are only going to increase.

    The Crimson Tide and the Blue Devils can’t realistically be students any more, so they may as well get paid.

    • bmaz says:

      It strikes as much of that is correct. I do not know what the answer is, and there simply is not a perfect one. At the college our daughter went to, four years cost WAY over a $100,00.00, and that is “after” her full academic tuition waiver. Say what you will, but college scholarship athletes get free tuition, supplies and room and board. That is worth a ton of money.

      So most every scholarship athlete will get nothing, and have the age old restrictions. And people are good with a handful reaping giant profit while the others still cannot even get airline tickets from family? I demur.

      • P J Evans says:

        I had the dubious advantage of going to a school that was division II at best, and for a while it demoted its football team to “club sport”. I don’t think that college athletics should have the level of influence they do – have honest semi-pro teams, where the players get paid honestly, and let college be for education instead of being athletic farm teams for the pros.

      • BobCon says:

        I know a professor at a school that went to the final four a couple of years ago and the two guys in his class who were on the team missed three weeks of class — just for the tournament. There are times in season outside of tournaments where they can spend 60 hours a week travelling, in games, training, practicing, and reviewing video.

        Players may be getting scholarships, but they can’t be scholars. A lucky few are bright enough, disciplined enough, and have the support systems to oursue an academic career. But it’s extremely tough.

        At a minimum I think one thing all schools should be forced to do is offer every kid at least two years of scholarships after eligibility is over, either to complete undergrad work or earn a second degree.

        • P J Evans says:

          At the first college I went to (for less than a year) I was recruited to help fill the marching band, which was extremely shorthanded. It was officially three hours a week, but we practiced more like 10 hours a week, plus the game time. (It’s pretty physical.)

      • jo6pac says:

        I was wondering if a college player has a career ending injury do they keep the scholarship? That might be able to get a better job after college?

        Go 9ers 4-0

  4. Peterr says:

    Florida, Alabama, and Texas will quickly follow California’s lead — then take things a couple steps farther by moving their effective date from 2023 to 2022 and perhaps 2021.

    No way the Good Ol Boys in the legislatures will let those treehugging libruls in CA get a step ahead of them when it comes to football.

    Not saying it’s good or bad, just that it’s as likely as the sun coming up in the east tomorrow morning.

    • bmaz says:

      Florida (throughout two different and somewhat disparate bills), New York and Illinois are already so moving.

  5. Molly Pitcher says:

    My husband played basketball at Cal on a full ride. I competed in amateur sports on an international level; my sport did not exist at Cal. He worked very hard every summer to make enough money to augment what his scholarship provided. Many of his team mates did not have access to jobs that paid as well as his.

    After graduation we both did years of volunteer work for the University, raising money to support the athletic programs. What I do know is that without football and basketball, there are a lot of women’s and men’s non-revenue sports which would not exist without the money generated by football and basketball. I don’t know what the answer is, I see all of the sides.

    I have wondered if student athletes whose image is used to the benefit of, for example video games, should receive payment which is held in a trust until graduation or their departure from college sports. I think any athlete whose career is ended by injury should have full tuition paid till they graduate and all medical expenses picked up by the school, whether they were on full scholarship or not.

    The scholarship value is getting overlooked in this national debate. As someone who is still paying off student loans for our kids I speak from the wallet. But many, maybe even most student athletes compete with no or only partial scholarships. And who is going to benefit at the smaller, non-marque schools ?

    I agree with bmaz that this is going to create a caste system. My hope is that by leading the parade, California can get the whole country pushing the NCAA to reevaluate. I have never been a big fan of Harry Edwards. His has made a big reputation and a nice career as a professional scold. But some of what he has said cannot be disputed. It is hard to look at conferences such as the SEC without thinking of the plantation system. Those schools provide opportunity to their football and basketball players as long as they are useful. The minute there is an injury they are cast aside. There is very little academic guidance and plenty of athletes get shuttled into marginal majors that provide eligibility without a worthwhile diploma.

    It would be nice to see the NFL and NBA making substantial donations to college athletics across the board so that ALL sports benefited. I am enough of a soft-headed romantic that I still believe in the ideal of amateur athletics, even though I know that horse bolted the barn long ago.

    If you want to see 1) the best defensive football player in college football in Cal’s All-American Evan Weaver and 2) a slaughter of epic proportions, tune into the Cal Oregon game tonight, 5pm west coast time. We might have made a game of it with Garbers at QB, but with the backup Modster I think we are in for a long night.

    • bmaz says:

      Not sure I can disagree with much, and maybe not anything, Molly has said. There is really a giant problem.

      The “solutions” to date are not just bad, but arguably exacerbate the problems. Curiously, the discussion here is already deeper and more intelligent that I have seen for the most part out in the wild.

    • Peterr says:

      The only thing I’d quibble with is this: “this is going to create a caste system.”

      There already *is* a caste system. The Power Five conferences hold a lot of the Power, especially in football, and the rest beg for scraps. Between the bowl games and the NCAA basketball tournaments, the major conferences make the rules and rake in the money.

      Will FPTP exacerbate the caste system? Absolutely. But that’s been the direction of college athletics for a long time.

      • P J Evans says:

        maybe they need to rethink the pay scales at the top. There’s no reason why a coach or an “athletic director” should be the highest-paid people at a school, or in state government. They shouldn’t be getting a million or more a year, especially when actual teachers are getting paid by the class (and less than minimum wage).

        • John K says:

          I have to pull for the Bayou Bengals but LSU’s (and the whole state of Louisiana’s) priorities in this regard are seriously fucked up.

      • bmaz says:

        Think Molly right in thought that there is not a single prophylactic fix for the ill of the NCAA on this issue. And it is sure a hell of a lot deeper than just naming and publicity rights for a few. And Peter right that this has been a festering issue for a very long time.

      • Coldie says:

        100% this. The caste system already very much exists. The status quo must be toppled. These arguments are very illuminating for me but the NCAA is a cartel that should cease to exist. Athletics should be forever severed from education. Pie in the sky I know but the NCAA holds all the power. Laws like this are all we are going to get for now, hopefully there are many more torpedos coming soon. College athletes are straight up exploited.

        • bmaz says:

          The question is, should the current system be “toppled” in a methodical and national way, or by stupid, individual states action led by showboaters trying to gain personal publicity? If you believe the latter, sorry, I think that is beyond bogus.

          • Coldie says:

            Fair enough. I try to envision a timeline for that series of events and I’m guessing never. Disruption to further spotlight the inequities of the entire system now is not just a real possibility. It’s moving forward. NCAA will fight it all the way and further ruin their industry and athletes regardless. That’s a gaurantee. Admittedly I go much further than that. I’m not a representative sample for this conversation as I personally will never watch or value professional sports on basic principle. I came to that conclusion years ago when my first child was born. Destroy it all. I’m always sad to see this amazing site give football a moment’s notice but here I am commenting. Giving up sports spectatorship was like giving up my car and cigarettes. Life is better. Nuke these horrible conglomerates from space, it’s the only way to be sure. Headed back outside on this beautiful Sunday. Thanks for the amazing conversations as always.

    • General Sternwood says:

      Modster might surprise — but you’re right he certainly was not ready for prime time last week. I think the earthquake this morning was a sign that Cal will defeat Oregon.

    • somecallmetim says:

      It seems Oregon doesn’t do epic as much these days – even with a swoonworthy QB their offense has trouble getting and staying in gear. The Bears were up 7-0 at halftime in Eugene, and the final was a respectable 7-17 loss.

  6. punaise says:

    Without diving into, you know, actual factual arguments and potential unintended consequences, I totally support the CA legislature and Gavin Newsom taking on the NCAA. Good on him for once again being a trailblazer.

      • punaise says:

        Ouch, that one grates.

        But even the writer kind of gets it wrong: It’s okay to say “build,” Ivanka!

        If only there was a verb for “design”….

      • P J Evans says:

        I’ve seen “architect” as a verb before, and it *does* grate. “Architect” for me is always a noun.

        • punaise says:

          “Architecture” and related terms have snuck into tech (software design mostly), much to the dismay of the state architect boards, I’m sure.

          • P J Evans says:

            I can see “architecture” in those uses – they’re designing a structure, whether it’s physical or software.

      • Valley girl says:

        Thanks for the link Peterr. If you see me using any of those words in the comments… well… they are so tempting to utilize to empower me to architect and execute an effectual comment. ;)
        p.s. I particularly liked “executing women’s economic empowerment”

        • somecallmetim says:

          Is Ivanka a feminist, or is “executing women’s economic empowerment” a Freudian slip?

          • P J Evans says:

            She’s only a feminist in her family’s eyes. The rest of us see her as just another rich kid playing with toys the rest of us can’t even get close to affording.

    • P J Evans says:

      That’s what I’ve been seeing. I don’t know if it was already in his plans, if he’s trying to avoid the oncoming impeachment train, or if he has plans on running for office in Texas again.

  7. Rapier says:

    For all you Bob Seger completists, from his little known folky troubadour days between his first rock career and his second. (it’s horrendous)

    The Lions, what can you say? The football gods will not relent.
    The Bears. Matt Nagy’s mind and body have been taken over by whatever it is that has taken over every Bear coach for 55 years and the dawn of the modern NFL, begging the offense to do one thing; not screw up. I posited that one man could alone couldn’t overcome the pull of those dark waters flowing under Halas Hall. I hope I’m wrong.
    The Cubs? Anthony Rizzo should tell the Rickett’s he ain’t going to work for them no more. Baez too. What a great thing that would be.

        • bmaz says:

          Heh. Jim and I have been clacking at each other like this for a very long time now. Marcy too, although she doesn’t even seem to try to defend Harbaugh and the Wolverweenies any more.

        • Jim White says:

          I thank all those mentioned in this thread, except, of course, for the scurrilous way bmaz inserted the Seminoles! Although I do thank the Seminoles for hiring Taggart…

          • bmaz says:

            “….except, of course, for the scurrilous way bmaz inserted the Seminoles!”

            Whaa?? Me? I haz no idea what you are referring to.

  8. scribe says:

    I had a great comment written and then, for some reason, got a 404 not found when I tried to post it.
    I’m typing with a splint on a finger and it’s too much of a pain in the ass to lay out all my arguments again. The conclusion remains:
    It is the fundamentally exploitative nature of major college sports, where everyone profits except the kids playing, and they are used and discarded without so much as a by-your-leave, that has to change.
    Will the California law do that? No.
    Will it freak the grey heads who run the NCAA? Yes.
    Disruption is fun.

  9. Molly Pitcher says:

    Well, bamz, here is the Pac 12 rumor of the day, Urban Meyer to USC. I think it would be great for the Pac 12. Might help stem the recruiting flow from the West to the South and MidWest.

  10. Peterr says:

    US Ambassador to the Court of St. James (i.e., the UK) and owner of the J-E-T-S JETS JETS JETS! Woody Johnson has a real problem on his hands:

    The wife of a US diplomat has left the UK after becoming a suspect in an investigation into the death of a motorcyclist involved in a fatal road collision, police said.

    Harry Dunn, 19, died after his motorbike and a car collided near RAF Croughton in Northamptonshire on 27 August.

    Northamptonshire police said a 42-year-old American woman who was being treated as a suspect in their investigation had left the UK.

    The foreign secretary, Dominic Raab, said he had called the US ambassador to “express the UK’s disappointment that she had left the country. . . .

    The US embassy in London said it offered its “deepest sympathies” to Dunn’s family following the accident “involving a vehicle driven by the spouse of a US diplomat assigned to the United Kingdom”.

    It said embassy officials were in close contact with the appropriate British officials. “Due to security and privacy considerations, we cannot confirm the identity of the individuals involved, but we can confirm the family has left the UK.”

    Apparently “deepest sympathies” do not include assistance in seeking justice. Can you say “thoughts and prayers”? Sure you can.

    Meanwhile, I wonder what kind of reaction will come up at the NFL game in London between Da Bears and the Raiders tomorrow (as well as the next three games over the following four weeks if nothing changes).

    Johnson’s prayer has to be that this gets lost on all the Brexit drama. His nightmare is that UK folks are already pissed off about Brexit and decide to channel their anger in this direction. Accused murderers fleeing the country rarely goes down well, and even moreso when their fleeing the country is enabled by officially accredited diplomats.

    • P J Evans says:

      The story I saw didn’t say she was the ambassador’s wife, but I wondered, as she apparently claimed “diplomatic immunity”. I don’t think it should apply when you flee a country to avoid legal consequences. (It certainly shouldn’t apply when you flee because you committed a crime.)

      • Peterr says:

        No, she’s not the ambassador’s wife, but the wife of a lower-level accredited diplomat. (Woody’s wife is not 42 years old.) Diplomatic immunity applies to a fair number of folks at an embassy, not just the ambassador.

        Woody’s problem is that he has to field all the questions, reply to all the demands, and take all the crap for abetting a suspect in fleeing the scene of the crime.

        • P J Evans says:

          You would think that he’d have legal advisers who could tell him it’s a bad idea to aid and abet.

          • Peterr says:

            On legal grounds, he’s just fine. Diplomatic immunity is a very well accepted principle of law, and the US is under no requirement to turn over someone with such immunity.

            Woody’s problem is on moral and public relations grounds. All the talk of “deepest sympathy” and “the special relationship” won’t change the fact that a woman accused of killing someone has fled the country and Woody (as the representative of President Donald Trump) will not allow her to be questioned, let alone put on trial.

            • P J Evans says:

              That’s the kind of thing that advisers should have told him, with yelling if necessary. (How would he feel if it had happened in the US, with one of his underlings fleeing the state or the country?) This really isn’t rocket surgery.

    • earlofhuntingdon says:

      Normally, a state would negotiate a confidential, non-precedential voluntary payment, depending on circumstances, without admitting or denying liability, but rather reaffirming immunity.

      It would resist formal cooperation in an inquiry, but would conduct its own internally. It needs to know what happened, in order to avoid it in future, to decide the obvious personnel issues, and to protect all its foreign service personnel going forward.

      The diplomat’s career is likely to be toast. Diplomats need to be accepted by their host state. Depending on how egregious the facts, and how egregious the US response to them, few host states are likely to accept this diplomat in future.

      But neither Trump nor Pompeo believe in accountability or the rule of law.

      • Peterr says:

        In the BBCs story about this, they include this nugget I had not seen elsewhere: “The diplomat’s wife, who has diplomatic immunity, left the UK despite telling police that she had no plans to.”

        If true, that pretty much puts a nail in her husband’s career.

        In the same piece, their diplomatic correspondent adds this as he explain diplomatic immunity:

        In a written Parliamentary answer in October 2017, then Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said: “The FCO [Foreign & Commonwealth Office – the British counterpart to the US State Dept.] does not tolerate foreign diplomats breaking the law.

        “When instances of alleged criminal conduct are brought to our attention by the police, we ask the relevant foreign government to waive diplomatic immunity where appropriate.

        “For the most serious offences, and when a relevant waiver has not been granted, we seek the immediate withdrawal of the diplomat.”

        The problem here is that the US do not appear to have granted a waiver for this particular diplomatic spouse.

        Instead, they have removed her from the UK before the British government could threaten to remove her itself if she did not submit to questioning.

        As such, the US appears to have calculated that protecting the woman from identification, questioning and possible prosecution was more important than the potential risk to UK-US relations.

        This is further evidence the adjective “special” should rarely be used to describe the alliance between both countries.

        That, my friends, is why Trump’s approach to foreign policy is so dangerous. The US will be decades in rebuilding the loss of trust with out allies that has taken place over the last three years.

        • Eureka says:

          Ouch, that’s quite a kicker there:

          This is further evidence the adjective “special” should rarely be used to describe the alliance between both countries.

    • Eureka says:

      *pulls up stool, sits to listen*

      The actual story is probably better than what one might imagine from vivid+ Corinthian leather+ Stones/Santana.

      add: oh this would make a great game of Mad Libs

    • Savage Librarian says:

      Did somebody say Córdoba?

      PACO IBÁÑEZ: CÓRDOBA, LEJANA Y SOLA (Federico Garcia Lorca)

      The Horseman’s Song

      Distant and lonely.
      Black steed, big moon,
      and olives in my saddlebag.
      Although I know the roads
      I will never reach Córdoba.
      Across the plain, through the wind
      Black steed, red moon.
      Death is staring at me
      from the towers of Córdoba.
      Oh, how long the road is!
      Oh, my valiant steed!
      Oh, death awaits me,
      before I reach Córdoba.
      Distant and lonely.’

  11. Bay State Librul says:

    Sports Illustrated and Sidd Finch are dead.
    The SEC and PAC 12 are Triple AAA farm clubs of the NFL and should be paid at
    $240,000 which is 50% of a rookie who plays the entire season.
    The NCAA will eventually be bought out by the NFL in a funky stock exchange deal.
    Halftime at the Super Bowl will be the highlights of the College Football Playoff Championship game.
    Fans in the northeast, for the most part, could give a shit about this law. High school football ranks higher.
    The California law will eventually hit the Supreme Court though, and Justice Roberts will be the ump. Amicus Brief will be filed by Goodell.

  12. earlofhuntingdon says:

    Contra the MSM, the US is not “ensnared” in impeachment, keeping its government from tending to any other matter. For the House, an impeachment would be conducting business so normal, it is specifically contemplated in the Constitution.

    Moreover, there is no other business to conduct. Moscow Mitch and his GOP-controlled Senate refuse to deal with legislation – over two hundred bills to date – coming from the House that does not come to them already wrapped in a GOP majority.

    The president refuses to deal with normal business. He does not know what that is. Since entering office, he has dealt only with his own business. That includes making money from his and other government spending, hiding the crimes that put him in office, and repeating them to keep him there.

    Conducting an impeachment inquiry, or voting on articles and having a trial in the Senate, would not interfere with other business. In fact, everything going on now is foreplay for that outcome.

    Separately, the WaPo’s editors do Joe Biden no favors with their title to his Saturday night OpEd: Trump won’t destroy me, and he won’t destroy my family. His text is better and his response is fine as far as it goes. But I found it defensive, and too much like bringing a handshake to a knife fight.

    • BobCon says:

      If anything, keeping the idiots afraid of being forced to testify helps keep them from interfering with the regular work of government. Congress really should have started sooner and covered more ground.

  13. rosalind says:

    and i picked a good night to watch Stanford. go Tree! a bright spot during a rebuilding year. waiting to hear an update on the 3rd string QB who left late in the game w/calf injury. (do they have a 4th string?)

  14. jhand says:

    It is interesting to note that most elite athletes aren’t that much different from the elite in other corners of our society. They tend to believe that they are entitled to the wealth and rewards that stardom brings, and see no problem with those in their “class” receiving the same benefits. Yes, there have been exceptions–Jim Brown, Bill Bradley, and LeBron James come to mind– but most elite athletes hang out with elite business people and vote for, and play golf with, other folks at the top of their game. From their perspective, there is nothing wrong with paying the college superstars a little extra. To them, if you want to get in on the action, become a superstar in college football or college basketball..

    • Jim White says:

      I would add to your list of exceptions Curt Flood from the 60’s Colin Kaepernick currently. Both could have carried on as elites and enjoyed the spoils but chose to speak up against the billionaire owners who employed them (and in favor of those with less of a voice) and were cast out completely.

      • jhand says:

        Thanks for mentioning them; they are heroes and trailblazers, as were Tommy Smith, John Carlos, and RFK supporters Rafer Johnson and Rosie Grier. I doubt that we will find any of these, who are still alive and able, on a Trump golf course.

  15. BobCon says:

    It depends on the sport. Most of the NBA has been solidly anti-Trump and has made it clear they would boycot ring kissing ceremonies. The Eagles were disinvited from the White House when it was clear almost nobody was going to show up. The Women’s World Cup team made their views known loudly.

    Other sports have accepted invitations — Tiger Woods is a notorious example — but there are a lot of athletes who are not on board. And while many have disappeared into the upper class, a lot of them don’t run away.

  16. scribe says:

    There is a certain thing about the twice yearly matchups between the Crows and my Stillers. This goes back to when they were still the Browns, before Modell moved them to Baltimore. Unlike the Colts he was even more brazen. He did it in broad daylight and not in the middle of the night. And long before a disappointed Brahns fan, disconsolate some 15 years later, would get busted for pissing on Modell’s grave. Charges were later dropped. (There’s video. Ain’t the internet grand?)
    Bill Cowher, Pittsburgh native, in his relatively-short NFL career played for the Brahns among others. It is said the aerial on his parents’ car was found bent in the shape of a letter “P” (as in Pittsburgh) during Brahns Week.
    And this translated to the Ravens. They’ll always be Brahns to us. Every year, there is Purple Week in Stillertown, when the intensity goes even higher. The players hate them. We fans hate them even more.
    This year, the Crows are something of an offensive machine. But, the retirement of Ozzie Newsome has manifested itself not in the O, but in the deficient D. The Crows can move the ball and they can’t (or haven’t yet shown the ability to) stop the other team’s O. In today’s NFL, where King Roger the Clown has turned a dignified game for strong men into a pinball machine played by preening prima donnas (Antonio Brown, I’m looking at you and hoping your deposition was on videotape) this passes for good football.
    And good entertainment.
    I happened on a YouTube someone posted of a Nonday Night Football game from nearly 40 years ago. Howard, Frank and Danderoo calling the game from 10/22/79 featuring the Broncos visiting the Steelers.
    The sheer joy of seeing Bradshaw, Harris, Bleier, Webster, Stallworth, Swann, Lambert, Ham, Greenwood, Greene, Shell, Blount in their prime, playing football at a very high level against Craig Morton, Randy Gradishar, Haven Moses and friends is indescribable. But I would ask you to go watch the video and note a couple of my takeaways:
    1. pace of play. This game moves along. Compare it to today’s game (I have one of the early games on now) where there is time for both a replay of the prior play and some closeups of the stars between plays, not to mention officiating calls and the like. The ’79 game, snap, play, player tackled, everyone gets up goes back, huddles briefly, sets up and moves on to the next play. To be fair, part of the seemingly fast pace stemmed from excising most of the commercials
    2. less officiating. The ’79 game had a goodly number of penalties, more than a few Denver false-starts likely caused by the sight of flames coming from the nostrils of Jacks Lambert and Ham lined up while staring down the Broncos. A roughing-the-passer on Denver for a defender dropping his head and launching into Bradshaw after he’d thrown the pass. But the officials got in, separated the combatants as needed, decided the penalty signaled it and stepped it off, then turned on the mike and announced it. Boom-boom, and done. A good part of it was the officials seeming more experienced, contrary to the latest push out of King Roger’s courtiers to force retirement of older officials (who, presumably, aren’t as on-board with the courtiers as younger, more malleable upstarts). They knew what they were doing.
    3. no replay. There was at least one dubious touchdown – Howard and Frank both noted it – and some other instances where we would have minute upon minute of replay analysis and “checking with New York” today.
    News flash – the Redskins just scored a 65 yard offensive rushing TD on Cheatin’ Bill’s Cheating Cheaters, per the announcers the first time the Cheaters have trailed all year. I get the feeling the Cheaters and Cheatin’ Bill may have taken the ‘skins a little lightly and may wind up paying the price for it. We now return you to your regularly scheduled trash.
    But the absence of replay didn’t adversely affect the game. Howard and Frank noted the dubiety of the call, Danderoo disagreed, and then everyone moved on. Just like life. Coaches and players were not working the refs with argument, nor were the refs coming over to explain the call. They might consult with the on-field captains (Stillers Greene and Bradshaw) to decide accept or decline, but that was about that.
    4. empty sidelines. Watch a game today and see how many people are on the sidelines. A player goes out of bounds and is almost guaranteed to run into someone. Not so at Three Rivers. There were cars and vans parked back against the wall, a polka band in an end zone corner. The local high school band getting ready for halftime congratulating the Stiller who’d just scored. (When was the last time a high school band performed at halftime of an NFL game?)
    5. ordinary people in the stands. Back then, regular people could afford to attend pro football games. And they did.
    6. stuff that would be game-ending penalties today being wholly legal. I saw a good number of horsecollar tackles. There was a pretty violent collision between a Denver defender and a Stiller WR where the receiver got pasted just as the pass got there. A flag went down and then the ref picked it up saying there was no penalty on the play. A good number of plays that would be pass interference today. Players did, to some degree, lead with their helmets.
    7. the players were closer to normal-sized people.
    8. Jack Lambert was in the middle of everything.
    You should watch the video. See what we had. Was losing it, for what we have today, worthwhile?

    Last week, my Stillers’ D turned Andy Dalton into smoking rubble, sacking him 8 times. I don’t see it playing out that way this week, but if they come through, I can see the Crows coming up short. I would love to see a Stiller win but won’t be heartbroken if they don’t. I have history to enjoy.

    • BobCon says:

      Football broadcasts are so much worse, in large part because they are so artificial. They can’t just show a wide angle shot of the play, they need to show a series of quick cuts between players, coaches and the stands before each play, followed by a series of narrow focus shots on different aspects of the play, followed by a series of replays. That doesn’t draw you into a game, it just kills the flow.

      Announcers are divorced from on screen images because of all of the cuts, making it even harder for viewers to make a connection to the game, and the lack of discipline in announcers mean that they are talking far too much for the natural pauses in the game.

      Producers clearly just throw technology at the screen and put guys in booths without meaningful training, and a result everything is busier but nothing is clearer.

    • Eureka says:

      We got the last 2 mins & OT for Stillers, so…

      The one call I saw from Tomlin to kickoff was a good one. I did however see this (I assume that hating these kinds of ads is part of the gag):

      “Attention Steelers fans… You may be entitled to compensation!… ”

      (couple of funny elements: save for later– or maybe it would have been better for seasons past– )

      Hope Rudolf is ok, he did not look good in that after-the-hit melt-to-the-field.

      Eagles-Jets was just a stats-building day for the defense, as anticipated. Ten sacks, two defensive touchdowns, etc., possibly the most depressing win ever. 31-6 Eagles– should have been a shutout but for a special teams snafu (Sproles was injured, not on the field to receive) that set up Jets for a 19 yard TD. (Also should have been a 35-0 shutout: there was a really odd failed (as I call it) drive that led instead to a FG.)

      I did have more (funny) anecdotes to share, but the post-game set-in was a real downer: offense wasn’t dialed in as much as they need to be, we face tough teams and on the road coming up. At least Pederson didn’t shine on it, though to some degree it may be attributable to the level of opponent (heard similar comments about Brady/NE today). Plus Kelce has a newborn daughter this week (Wentz saved *a lot* of yards and possibly worse by recovering and spiking a bad pass from Kelce).

      They had a fan feature from the tailgate, including the catchin’ babies hero. In observation of same, there were a couple of nice opportunities for Nelly on long passes but he got pulled-off some via illegal contact both times. This is where Pederson is a smart coach with his challenges, too– he called for a review of DPI the first time around, they recognized (but couldn’t retroactively call) an illegal contact, and caught and called the contact the next time.

      Wentz had a nice duck move to avoid a sack and got off a completion to Ertz (who was called Mr. Julie Ertz at one point in the game)– he is delivering the moves this season (others more spectacular than this, but it was a nice one):

      “It’s crazy how these plays just feel routine for Carson Wentz. Just, wow. #FlyEaglesFly”

      Jeebus I can’t stand the sound of my own typing voice: I was not kidding about the wah-wah Debbie Downer post-game after this clock-puncher.

    • Eureka says:

      (*Rudolph @ 716p)

      I’m so glad I checked out that 1979 video– it’s a font of the most unexpected recall cues.

      There’s even a *1980 Winter Olympics* commemorative coin featured ca. the opening sequence. Great memories: the torch relay…The Miracle on Ice…

      Playus interruptus is here to stay, though, and– as relevant parts intersect with (or rather create ever-growing duties for) game management– I tip my hat to Pederson (as above) for negotiating them pretty well.

      • scribe says:

        Wait until you get into the second half (after the Willie Stargell interview at halftime) and see commercials for the Datsun 310 and the 280ZX and Lowenbrau. I have to assume the guy taping it got tired of blanking out the commercials or something, for which I am grateful.

  17. Valley girl says:

    Not trash talk but this thread on narcissistic sociopaths e.g. Trump !!!!!
    ~I don’t know who needs to hear this, but back in the day, when I was a lawyer, over 30 years, I represented 2 high-functioning narcissistic sociopaths.
    So I know how the endgame is going to be played out:
    Bail out now, enablers. Quit. Cut your best deal. 1/x~~

    • P J Evans says:

      I’ve seen the same kinds of comments elseweb, from people who have dealt with similar situations. Some of them no longer speak with one or another (or both) parents, because of it.

      • Valley girl says:

        I’ve also seen such comments about narcissists & their effects (long time interest) but nothing before from lawyer’s perpective about combo of malignant narcissism and sociopaths. Trump is special.

  18. rosalind says:

    at the risk of jinxing things: the Rayduhs are playing very very well, curently up 14-0, and just got the ball back. *fingers crossed*

          • scribe says:

            It’s called “building the international game” or “building the international audience”.

            Go to some of the more-commercial German newspapers and there are banner ads for NFL jerseys in the sidebars. (E.g. Bild Zeitung) Even the more erudite among them (Suddeutsche Zeitung, for example) run real articles about the NFL, as well as about German or German-extraction athletes in the US leagues. E.g., Theiss, who played for the Celtics last season, got a couple nice articles in the SZ, Moritz Wagner got good continuing coverage, and some guy who hit a lot of dingers for the Twins, also German-born, similar SZ treatment. Super Bowl and World Series get coverage, too. I know I’ve sent EW any number of articles from German papers wherein they give Biebs warm, friendly treatment prior to Cheatin Bill and his Cheaters winning or losing another SB. She’s liked the articles and the way they fawn.

            The days of Michael Jordan tourguiding Derek Jeter in Europe during the MLB offseason, where they could enjoy relative anonymity, (it happened) are pretty much over.

            In China, hoops is huge – in the last year or so there were a couple American players who signed some very nice deals to play there. Sorta like how Americans would play baseball in Japan (which still goes on).

            Hockey is perhaps the most-internationalized of the major sports with US, Canadian and Euro players trading back and forth regularly. A couple NHL teams played exhibitions and then regular-season games in Europe within the last couple weeks. I think the Flyers opened their season in Prague this year.

            The world track and field went off this past weekend in Doha.

            Sport is international. It’s just another example of money follows talent follows money.

      • Peterr says:

        And Da Bears choke, allowing Chuckie a win. I need a beer. Maybe several of them.

        Now I’m forced to decide whether to root against the Cheese or against my brother’s favorite team, Jerry’s Owboys.

        One of these days, someone has to invent a new rule that allows for both teams in a game to lose.

  19. Bay State Librul says:


    Wowser — Holy shit, you are turning into a real asshole.
    Your hatred of the Patsies is indicative of the Trump base.
    Your Stiller’s blew the game and the Patsies kill the Skins.
    What the fuck is wrong with you?
    I’m sucking down a Mountain Ale from Vermont (7.4% ALC by Volume) and waiting for an apology

  20. Bay State Librul says:


    In other words, your analysis are not credible but based on bias.
    I guess that’s okay on Trash Talk.
    Any comment from the peanut gallery?

    • bmaz says:

      Scribe is fine, he has loved the Steelers and loathed the Pats as long as we have all been around this blog and its progenitor. There is nothing new here to be mad at.

        • bmaz says:

          Offense, especially the O-Line, is shaky. And they have not played anybody worth a damn yet. And their next two are against the Giants and Jets. They could easily be 7-0 before ever playing a decent team. In other words, it is hard to tell.

    • scribe says:

      If that’s all the better you’ve got, I’m avoiding that Vermont piss-water. I’ll stick with Czechvar and Penn Pilsner, the former known everywhere outside the US as Budweiser (from Budweis, Czech Republic) and the latter a proud product of the mighty Penn Brewery of Pittsburgh, as good as any echt deutsches Pils.
      I was pretty clear about not holding any great hope for a Stiller victory, though admitting it was possible if the D stepped up. The fact of Rudolph getting knocked out cold by an unpenalized hit to the jaw and the D not stopping the Crows O, and a third-stringer trying to move the Stiller O pretty much absolves the loss, except for being another nail in Tomlin’s coffin. Any boxer would have been proud of the quality of that knockout, where the instant replay showed clearly that Rudolph’s eyes rolled back and his face went blank instantly upon impact and he collapsed like a bag of potatoes. The stupid grin on his face as they walked him off the field (the meat wagon broke down) merely confirmed another job opening in the QB line for next week, for which Kaepernick will not be considered.
      I’ve pretty much written off this season.

      • Bay State Librul says:

        Thanks for your reply.
        Yes Tomlin sucks.
        Yes, your excuses are pathetic.
        No penalty. I saw the play, maybe others will weigh in.
        Perhaps, I missed something?

  21. Bay State Librul says:


    Let me remind you to what he said:

    “News flash – the Redskins just scored a 65 yard offensive rushing TD on Cheatin’ Bill’s Cheating Cheaters, per the announcers the first time the Cheaters have trailed all year. I get the feeling the Cheaters and Cheatin’ Bill may have taken the ‘skins a little lightly and may wind up paying the price for it. We now return you to your regularly scheduled trash”

    His feelings are out of whack and deeply prejudicial. He is entitled to his opinion, I’m just calling him out, and would like a reply?

  22. Bay State Librul says:

    Look, the Pats are 5-0, but they have a really easy schedule.
    I hate Belichick and Kraft just as everyone else does.
    But, the team is good, at least defensively, and if they procure another tight end, they may just make it.
    Brady and Edelman are pros, give them some credit, instead of cheap innuendos
    If they falter, you can shove it up my ass, but until then….

      • Bay State Librul says:

        Appreciate your reply, but let me know how you really feel?
        Will they make it?
        Are they cheaters?

      • scribe says:

        A week or so ago I heard about an interview in which Gronk said he was having entirely too much fun and, more importantly, feeling more healthy than in years, since he retired. The interviewer concluded the chances of Gronk returning were nil, amplified by how Gronk has stopped the intensive workout regimen of active players and gone into a much less intense mode, and has dropped a good bit of weight, too.
        He done.

  23. Bay State Librul says:

    Question: why is everybody so silent about the Patriots.
    Do we have a bunch of Republican Senators sitting by?
    Someone weigh in, please….

    • scribe says:

      I saw some Patriots’-logo car floormats in the store the other day. Seems like an appropriate use for the logo – rest boots, all filthy with mud and horseshit, on itso you don’t get your carpet dirty.

      • Bay State Librul says:

        The legend of Scribe:
        You are pivoting, just answer the question.
        Did Brady and Edelman cheat today?

  24. scribe says:

    Mount Jerry, building to a major eruption.
    Coach Garrett can’t keep the truth from breaking through, his face letting his eternal cluelessness come out.
    Dak is playing like shit.

    I love this. Go Cheese!

    Is Ezekiel Elliot still on this team?

  25. Peterr says:

    Bmaz, I’m very disappointed in you. This happens on Wednesday, and no mention of it in this week’s Trash Talk?

    This part of the Bidwill legacy with St. Louis is not one I had heard before in the behind the scenes negotiations to keep the Cardinals in St. Louis:

    The mayor then devised a scheme to buy the New England Patriots and sell them to Mr. Bidwill in exchange for the football Cardinals. [Mayor Vince] Schoemehl claimed to have bought a $10 option to buy the Patriots from a group that held the option to buy.

    But Mr. Bidwill wasn’t interested in selling or trading the Cardinals.

    Thank God for small favors. The notion of BillBel and Brady in St. Louis . . . *shudders*

    Sure, Bidwill isn’t quite in the same league with Jerry Jones, Robert Irsay or Stan Kroenke when it comes to hateworthy owners, but he was definitely close. I think Kroenke would top that list in St. Louis, but Bidwill would be a very close second.

  26. Bri2k says:

    I’ll add a bit of Canadian spice so you can have a good laugh. I like to follow the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. Never been to Winnipeg, just like the name. For those of you who’ve never seen it, Canadian football is a much more wide-open game and I enjoy it more than the NFL when I get a chance to watch it.

    I think my favorite Blue Bombers moment was when instead of shaking hands with the other team’s coach after a tough loss, the Blue Bombers’ coach gave him the finger instead. Close runner up is when the team went after each other with snow shovels during practice.

    They are doing far better this year, to Winnipeg’s great relief no doubt.

    I wear a Blue Bombers cap and I was at the store and someone asked me who the team was so I told them. They asked if I was Canadian. I said, no I just like pulling for a team I could care less about.

    (Recovering Steelers fan who saw the glory days back in the 1970’s)

    • bmaz says:

      This is so totally awesome. It is wonderful. I may have to go find a Blue Bombers lid to go with my Cheesehead our friend Phred sent me years ago. During football season, much to Mrs. bmaz’s consternation, the Cheesehead is always out and on display in the main living room.

    • NorskieFlamethrower says:

      ROFLMAO!! As a recovering Vikings fan I hafta say that the Vikings got the best the Blue Bombers ever had and will ever have when they stole Bud Grant from Winnipeg lo those many years ago. But really, I am a recovering sports fan and have finally cleared my head of the horrible headaches I used to get when thinking about my abhorrence for every form of human slavery including capitalism and at the same time obsessing about pro sports drafts and trades. Go Blue Bombers!!!

  27. Bay State Librul says:

    Memo to: The Pivoter, a/k/a Scribe,The Sadducees a/k/a hypocrites/Patriot haters, BMAZ, Peterr, et al.:

    Seven take-a-ways

    (1) My Vermont favorite, Mountain Ale, is a rugged brown ale, steeped in “Vermont Lore” . However, my all-time brew is the Italian Peroni. I wouldn’t touch a Bud if it was wrapped up in a million-dollar winning scratch ticket. See St. Louis below.
    (2) The Patriots are 5-0. According to the Globe’s Chad, “Brady (71,923) passed Brett Favre (71,838) for third place on the all-time passing yardage list. He’s just 17 yards behind Peyton Manning (71,940) , which with the Patriots playing Thursday gives Manning three days to announce his comeback and try to prevent Brady from surpassing him.”
    (3) The move to St. Louis was the brainchild of the former dickhead – Orthwein, owner of the Patriots. The article below gives you all the sordid details
    (4) Kraft is dickhead #2 when he tried to move the team to Hartford. (fucker).
    (5) “Win at all costs” Belichick will end up in the Hall of Shame. He reminds me of Trump. Don’t get me wrong, I always root for the Pats, Red Sox, Celtics and Bruins. Over the years, I’ve tried to be more charitable to the Yankees but only after we won the Pennant. However, I still abhor Clemens, that lying sack of shit, and Schilling, who lost his mind after he bloodied his sock.
    (5) My plea to all you Patriot haters, you can hate all you want but “give some love to the team”
    (6). If the Patriots lose their next 11 games, you can drag me to Gallows Hill, string me up as a witch, and “shudder” the shit out of me.
    (7) I miss PHRED, she was familiar with my neurosis.

  28. scribe says:

    There is a video of the Antonio Brown deposition debacle. He wants to suppress it; he says he’s willing to redo the dep.
    I want to watch him chant his mantra.

    In other news, Baker Mayfield is Young Mr. Football Manziel but without the girlfriend drama, alcohol problem and partying in Vegas instead of practicing. I love what Bosa (whose great-grandfather, we’re told, ran the Chicago Outfit after Capone and Nitti checked out) did with planting the flag.

    More on this … Next Week!

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