Friday Open Thread: Money and Baseball

Game action at Ebbets Field, Brooklyn between the Dodgers and Pirates on May 30, 1955

By Bryan Caskey

I figured I would give everyone a new thread to chew on since it’s been awhile since the last one. Here’s some of the top headlines around the state and country.

  1. U.S. inflation: Inflation accelerated last month and remained at its highest rate in over a decade, with price increases from pandemic-related labor and materials shortages rippling through the economy. I know Brad doesn’t do much on financial news. However, this is important. Any person shopping for groceries or filling up a car’s gas tank is already feeling the pinch of inflation.
  2. Dawn Staley: The University of South Carolina agreed to pay Ms. Staley $22.4M over the next seven years. She’s certainly earned it, and this makes her the highest paid women’s college basketball coach in the land. She will keep USC women’s basketball as a force for years to come. If you haven’t had a chance to go see them play, you’re missing out.
  3. The Border: President Biden has announced he’s going to reimplement President Trump’s “Remain in Mexico” policy if Mexico agrees. I guess we’ll have to see what the Mexican government wants to do.
  4. Catch-22 in Congress. Yesterday, Senator Sinema has announced that she isn’t voting for the reconciliation bill until the House passes the infrastructure bill that has already passed the Senate. This is sort of a problem, since some House Democrats have said they aren’t voting for the infrastructure bill until the reconciliation bill is passed by the Senate. Sounds like someone is going to have to back down, or the Catch-22 scenario happens and no money gets spent at all.
  5. Baseball: Dodgers and Braves play for the NL pennant, while the Astros and Red Sox are both on the hunt for the AL pennant. I think it will be Red Sox and Dodgers, but I’d love to see the underdog Braves pull another rabbit out of their hat. The photo above is from the Dodgers back when they were the Brooklyn Dodgers, playing at Ebbets Field.

11 thoughts on “Friday Open Thread: Money and Baseball

  1. Norm Ivey

    Related to #1, I suppose:

    I am fascinated by the labor shortage. There’s never been anything like it in my lifetime. The increased unemployment insurance benefits took the blame for awhile, but those have ended, and the situation is not improving. There’s lots of opinions about what’s going on, but it seems to boil down to this: workers have options now, or at least they are more aware of their options, and they are exercising them.

    While it’s most noticeable to me when I have to wait for longer to get my Egg McMuffin in the morning, it sounds like it’s up and down the job ladder. Some folks left the market permanently or for self-employment. Some discovered they could live with less, so are free to seek out positions that better suit them. Others discovered they have some leverage (if you won’t allow me to work from home, I’ll find someone who will).

    Choice is a good thing. Not a fan of the related inflation.

    1. Brad Warthen

      Personally, I decided I wasn’t ever going to the office downtown again. I can well imagine other people making similar decisions. I mean, all these months have demonstrated that I can do what I do from home. So why not?

      It’s sort of a modified version of Peter’s revelation. Unlike him I’m not complaining about the job, and I’m still going to do the job. I’m just not going to go in

    2. Bobby Amundson

      IMHO Professor SPOT ON! I am developing a college course: “Social Entrepreneurship in the Modern Mobile Economy.” Partly through luck, I’ve been in the right place at the right time and learned how to make money while helping others. That is Social Entrepreneurship; Social Entrepreneurs often use concepts that are called “Enlightened Self-Interest” and/or “Servant Leadership.”

      Brad has a good sense of what it takes to become a naval aviation officer; I suppose it can be described as beating leadership into your head. However, that was just the beginning of my leadership career; as I continue my study of leadership, I realize great military officers practice both. It isn’t easy to make a lawful order that has a high probability of someone for whom you are responsible losing their life.

      Norm, I have a much different perspective then you do simply because I am outside of the system. As I interact with our high school and college seniors, our future leaders, they are very frustrated. My guess is the frustration I’m hearing locally is a nationwide issue, with some areas being winners, and others obvious losers – like so much of rural America.

      Human Capital – resources. The local school superintendent (a good man, originally from Peru), just last week ask me what I saw as the solutions. We were both busy, but he listened for approximately 30 minutes. I told him we need to get back to the basics: Family and Local. I am a Jack Kerouac type wanderer and observer, and as I do both, I see businesses, communities, and of course families succeed when there is that strong sense of family. A sense of family that goes beyond just your biological kin; I remember the days when my mother was home, and if there was some gap that need to be filled, family friends, neighbors would step in to help.

      My conclusion (for now) is that Social Entrepreneurship is just capitalism in a kind way, and as I believe free markets are meant to act. Of course, that is a very optimistic point of view as there is little question humans are not rational. Currently we are in a modern, mobile economy. My time in the Navy confirmed some lessons I learned before joining, and after having served. Be agile. Change is good, and when systems (organisms are systems) do not change, then they fail. Norm understands that loop is multi-dimensional and very complex.

      I remind Brad we are in a VUCA’d world: Volatile, Uncertain, Complex and .Ambiguous. Human’s are Heuristic, and I believe education is the only way out. Let’s LISTEN TO THE CHILDREN. #classof2022 #listentothechildren #listeningtothechildren #wewantbarneysbullet #unicornstrong

      Norm, you may share. These young adults are smart and want change. Let’s help them sir. Lead, Follow or Get Out of the Way.

      1. Bryan Caskey Post author

        Gen. Powell had previously been treated for multiple myeloma. People with multiple myeloma have compromised immune systems and are thus at greater risk of developing severe Covid-19. Vaccines are also likely to be less effective in these patients.

      2. Barry

        Some news from Fake News promoter- the Conservative’s go to source- Fox News

        Yesterday, John Roberts of Fox News – they advertise him as a “straight news anchor from their news division” posted a misinformation tweet about Powell and his vaccinated status. Those that have watched Roberts know he spreads misinformation and half truths per Fox News protocol to the mostly geriatric Conservative Fox audience.

        Roberts posted “”The fact that Colin Powell died from a breakthrough COVID infection raises new concerns about how effective vaccines are long-term,”

        Roberts intentionally misled the Conservative audience (Many Conservatives repeated the misleading info from Roberts’ yesterday) by not revealing Powell was also being treated for myeloma and was 84 years old.

        Roberts was immediately met with very strong pushback from other media members- some very well known- as well as many medical professionals including a Fox Medical contributor who appeared on Fox yesterday and pushed back on the misinformation Roberts pushed with Roberts on the screen at the same time. The doctor, Nicole Saphier, obviously didn’t seem to be aware that Roberts was one of the ones promoting the misinformation when she called out “those that are” misleading people then she pointed to Powell’s other medical problems made any vaccine unlikely to produce antibodies due to his compromised immune system.

        Howard Kurtz, the “media critic” for Fox who is also known to almost never critique Fox and is pretty famous for spreading his own brand of lies and misinformation over the years also pushed back on the claim by Roberts, without using his name.

        Roberts eventually deleted the tweet -and as The Hill reported, tried to walk back his comment by issuing more tweets trying to explain himself- admitting in one that he knew Powell had myeloma (but Roberts had not said that earlier when trying to undermine the COVID vaccine).

        It was pretty fun to watch so much condemnation of such an obvious misinformation effort by a Fox News “straight news anchor” and then watch him tuck his tail and run.

        of course Fox regulars like Tucker Carlson and Will Cain still promote vaccine misinformation every day – without being called out by Fox News “news anchors.”

    3. Barry

      I’ve mentioned this before- and I don’t know the answer

      My 18 year old applied for 2 jobs this past summer- both places were supposedly in bad need of workers.

      I helped him with his applications to make sure they were completely filled out, no slang, etc..

      Neither place called him to even talk to him.

      He’s 18, works out and is in very good shape, looks the part of an eager, enthusiastic young person. His hair is styled neatly but of course in the style of an 18 year old. He’s very polite and friendly. He has his hang-ups like anyone else but I’ve told my wife many times, he has it together much better than I did when I got my first job at age 15 and he’s more friendly than 75% of the employees we encounter at local stores, etc.

      He’s now applied for another position. I completed the online application for him with his assistance, and I created what my teacher wife said was a very professional looking resume (took me almost 2 hours) – something that isn’t easy to compile for someone looking for their 1st job. Haven’t heard from them yet- but it’s been less than a week even though they advertise that they are “hiring on the spot.”

      One of his best friends is in the same situation – he applied at several retail and restaurant locations over the summer and never received as much as a return call. He finally just gave up as the school year got closer and closer.

      So something just doesn’t add up.

  2. Brad Warthen

    Anyway, thanks, Bryan.

    As Bryan said, it had been awhile since a post — or it looked like it, anyway. I thought I had posted this one last night, but when I came here to look at what Bryan had written, I realized… uh, where’s my post?

    But you can read it now, if you’ve got enough time for War and Peace…

  3. Bobby Amundson

    2. Dawn Staley may “save” the U of SC. Coach Staley is invaluable.
    3. Joe, Joe. Politicians …
    4. REALLY – a constant circular firing squad. At times I wish that was not a metaphor. JUST KIDDING; REALLY!!
    5. Sports – and music soothe me. Great win for the Gamecocks; is the tide going to turn? Loving the World Series.

    My heart is in Utah, as I am a very proud U of U graduate. The Utes have lost two key players to gun violence; they were teammates in high school (Texas) and at Utah. Ty Jordan (September 26) and Aaron Lowe (last December). 28 unanswered points against a good Arizona State team – the team went to TJ’s funeral Monday and his mother told the team to go out and win for her son TJ and his lifelong friend Aaron (AL).

    The U of U Fight Song ends proudly “I’m a Utah Man.” I think I may be a Utah Unicorn (not a Latter Day Saint).


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