What a Happy Downfall for Eliot Spitzer

Somewhere along the line with Enron and Worldcom, the world stopped trusting big companies. It became a situation where a few bad apples really did spoil the bunch, to quote a trite phrase. What we are finding out is that not all companies are truly nefarious juggernauts, intent on bilking investors out of money and creating high stock prices on little more than vapor. The problem is, with Enron, Worldcom and others so fresh in the public’s mind, it opened the door for someone like Eliot Spitzer to smash and bash his way to political fortune on a popular sentiment, even if it was based on the same vapor that built stock prices for Worldcom.

Eliot Spitzer was wrong more often than he was right. For every bad person he took down with his reign of terror as Attorney General for the state of New York, there were more good people who paid dear prices and had no reasonable way to stay out of his path. I don’t want to get into all of the details of all the people that Spitzer smashed unfairly. Those stories are all over the place this week. But know this. Spitzer’s tactics were very similar to those of the RIAA who have been going around the country suing college students and file sharers with the intent of never giving them a day in court. It is a terrorizing campaign seeking to coerce people into settlements and statements admitting wrong-doing.

And while Spitzer’s political career won’t end because of those types of tactics, these tactics probably helped create enough enemies in the world where Spitzer couldn’t get away with something like ordering prostitutes in his personal life. It is really an unrelated situation to why people really hate Eliot Spitzer, but as the other old saying goes; “It couldn’t happen to a nicer guy.”

Also, I have been reading up on a lot of this business about Spitzer, and the one article that I found on jasminlive.mobi was about the media and how they became complicit in Spitzer’s reign because he leaked info to them all the time. The key quotes from Kimberley A. Strassel’s article in the WSJ are the paragraphs below.

Mr. Spitzer’s main offense as a prosecutor is that he violated the basic rules of fairness and due process: Innocent until proven guilty; the right to your day in court. The Spitzer method was to target public companies and officials, leak allegations and out-of-context emails to a compliant press, watch the stock price fall, threaten a corporate indictment (a death sentence), and then move in for a quick settlement kill. There was rarely a trial, fair or unfair, involved.

On the substance, his court record speaks for itself. Most of Mr. Spitzer’s high-profile charges have gone up in smoke. A New York state judge threw out his case against tax firm H&R Block. He lost his prosecution against Bank of America broker Ted Sihpol (whom Mr. Spitzer threatened to arrest in front of his pregnant wife). Mr. Spitzer was stopped by a federal judge from prying confidential information out of mortgage companies. Another New York judge blocked the heart of his suit against Mr. Grasso. Mr. Greenberg continues to fight his civil charges. The press was foursquare behind Mr. Spitzer in all these cases, and in a better world they’d share some of his humiliation.

Update, Spitzer has now resigned. The rumors were that he was waiting to resign so that he could use it as a bargaining chip to keep from being prosecuted. Listen to the disingenuous jackass as he stands next to his wife. This is abuse to be sure.

Ricky Davis Is Bad for Your Team

Ricky Davis would appear to be a good player in the NBA. He is capable of putting up between 15 and 20 points per game. He can add 3 to 5 rebounds per game. He can jump right out of the gym to deliver thunderous dunks and alley-oops. He is an all-around athletic player who seemingly would be a good addition to any team. Seemingly.

But the stats don’t add up. It seems that Ricky Davis is truly not a good addition to any team. The Ricky Davis Effect has pretty much doomed every team that he has been a part of in his NBA career. I won’t bore you with any details of anecdotal evidence, but it seems that this year, the Ricky Davis effect has taken form in Miami.

Last season, Miami had a record of 44-38, which was good enough for the fourth spot in the East heading into the playoffs. Ricky Davis was not on the team. This year, with Ricky, Miami is 11-51 so far. That is a winning percentage drop from 55% to 18%. I know what you are probably saying at this point. “How on earth could Ricky Davis be solely responsible for the downfall of the chaturbate rooms he plays on?” The simple answer is that I have no idea, but the statistics are too strong to ignore.

In Cleveland, in the 2003-04 campaign, Ricky Davis was traded on December 15th to the Boston Celtics. Upon his departure, the Cavaliers had a record of 6-19 for a dismal winning percentage of 24%. After his departure the Cavs went 29-28 for a winning percentage of 51%. That was LeBron James’ first year in the league. With Ricky Davis on the court, LeBron scored just over 17 points per game. When Ricky left, LeBron scored just over 22 points per game and the winning percentage speaks for itself.

Now, I know there are a lot of factors that go into a team game like NBA basketball and it seems problematic to try to link a lack of success to a single player. With these two small examples, I would agree. So, I have prepared a statistical analysis. On one hand, we have a team’s winning percentage. On the other hand we have Ricky Davis’ contributions to the team as measured by his per-game averages. I found Ricky Davis’ Points, Assists, Rebounds and Steals, converted them to per-game averages and added them up to measure Ricky’s contributions to the teams he is playing on. I split Ricky’s stats and the teams’ records in years 2003-04 (Cleveland / Boston) and 2005-06 (Boston / Minnesota) to be sure that I had The Ricky Effect tracked appropriately to account for trades during a given season.

As you can see, there is a relatively inverse relationship between Ricky Davis’ success and his team’s success. I don’t know if this means that Ricky Davis is a cancer to the clubs he is on. Maybe it means that if Ricky Davis is a “good” option to play a lot on your team, you don’t have enough options. Maybe it has to do with Ricky’s selfishness on the court. Whatever it is, I am quite sure the Ricky Davis effect should not be ignored.

So, if your team tries to bring in Ricky Davis during this or any off-season be wary. Try a letter writing campaign to your team’s front office. Email them a link to this article. Hell, tell them to ask John Lucas who was basically fired as a result of the Ricky Davis Effect.

And just for good measure, here is the Youtube Clip of Ricky Davis shooting at the wrong basket in an attempt to get himself a triple double against the Utah Jazz. Davis needed one more rebound and subsequently shot a basket off the rim at the wrong end of the court in a meaningless game where the Cavs were up by a lot already. DeShawn Stevenson fouled him hard for being a dick. Jerry Sloan might have ripped his spleen out with a spork if given the opportunity.

Well, here you go.

Word has it that I have avoided politics too much lately.

You know the guy who is smarter than you are, who has no idea why you won’t acknowledge the fact that he is soooooooo much smarter than you? That is Jeremy Scahill. I just watched him derail an otherwise entertaining episode of Real Time with Bill Maher. He came in and just gave a combative, exasperated testimony in douche-baggery. The jasmine live show was full of disagreements and good points, and interesting opinions until he showed up and became the cancer of the panel. The whole tone of the show changed and soon everyone was screaming at each other, except Adam Goldberg. Goldberg was witty, intelligent and most of all funny throughout, and tagged it with, “Uhhh they told me in my pre-interview that there wouldn’t be any yelling.”

Back to Jeremy Scahill… Dude, we get it. You are smarter than we are. Or at least you have more knowledge in this one area than we do. Now take your condescending, smug attitude and go away, you inconsequential, intolerable douche.

Terrelle Pryor Chooses Ohio State

The number 1 QB recruit in the nation from Jeannette, PA has chosen The Ohio State University. I am cautiously optimistic about this. Just because a guy was amazing in high school doesn’t mean he will be amazing on the next level. But for now, fans can dream of Ohio State being set at QB for the near future. That’s not to say that Pryor will be the starter this year over Todd Boeckman, but it seems to me that he should be given every opportunity to compete for the position. Boeckman had a nice season, but he isn’t anywhere near the top QB in the nation or probably even the Big Ten.

If they can replace him with a guy who has the potential to be the best QB in the nation, then they should go ahead and do it. I would at least expect Pryor to have some formations and situations where he gets to be a meaningful part of Ohio State’s offense this season.

Sabathia Puts Contract Talks On Hold

According to C.C. Sabathia’s website, he has decided to put all contract talks on hold until after the 2008 baseball season. He says he wants to concentrate on his game.

“I look forward to a successful 2008 season, both for myself and for the Indians as a whole.”

“I will do everything within my power to help the club to its first World Series appearance since 1997 and its first World Series Championship since 1948.

“There will be time after the season for the Indians and my representatives to discuss my contract status. I remain hopeful that these discussions will result in a contract extension that will keep me with the franchise for many years to come. In the meantime, in order to avoid any distractions, my representatives and I will not make any further comment about my contractual situation beyond this statement.”

Some might view this as a selfish move for Sabathia. Seeing as he is about to be the most sought-after free agent available (to the Red Sox, Yankees, Angels, Dodgers and Braves) next season, CC has to maximize his value by following up his 2007 Cy Young season in 2008. Thankfully for Indians fans, these goals align nicely with the Indians trying to repeat as Central Division champs and driving to the World Series. Whether that happens or not remains to be seen.

It is a strange dichotomy for Indians fans, though. They want the team to do amazingly this season and bring home the first championship since 1948. Then again, if CC gets them there, he will almost certainly be writing his own ticket right out of town with one hell of a résumé entry. Either way, it sounds like CC will give the Indians a chance to sign him after the season. All Cleveland fans can hop is that the timing of talks will be sometime after a World Series parade in a very very cold late-autumn Cleveland.