27 June 2012
Death to the BCS, Washington DC and a small quibble with Yahoo Sports' Dan Wetzel
First, I live in Washington, D.C. Inside the Beltway, in fact. (Cue ominous music). And I happen to like it here. Despite the political partisanship and dysfunction. (Which, sorry America, is simply a reflection of your own contradictory beliefs and desires). Despite the lobbying and grifting and general special interest-ing, too. (Which, again, is an outgrowth of actual representative government. Look in the mirror, America: you are all special interests. Unless you're too apathetic or ignorant or blithe to participate. In that case: enjoy "Dancing With the Stars!")
As such, I'm defensive.
Second, I think Yahoo's Dan Wetzel is just about the best sports columnist in the country. When he's great, he's really great; when he's bad, he's still really good. Smart. Provocative. Finds angles others don't. Sees the bigger picture. Minimum fluff, maximum effort, never peddles half-baked bulls__t for the sake of clicks and/or trolling.
I admire the guy. So it pains me to say this.
He took the easy -- and lazy -- way out.
In an otherwise terrific column on the Death of the BCS -- a death he helped bring about, and kudos! -- Wetzel wrote the following:
Fittingly, they held the meeting that killed off the BCS in Washington, D.C., at the Dupont Circle Hotel, right in the heart of a city built on graft, special interests and absolutely terrible ideas.
The ol' DC IS SO CORRUPT CONGRESS IS FOR SALE 12 FAT CAT LOBBYISTS ON K STREET CONTROL EVERYTHING EVEN THOUGH WASHINGTON CAN'T DO ANYTHING RIGHT trope?
Lame. So lame.
Look, Washington was built on a swamp. Get it straight. And, occasionally, the city manages to come up with some not-so-absolutely-terrible ideas. Like the highway system. Or clean air and water. Or the Marshall Plan. Or putting a man on the f__king moon. Or Social Security and DARPA. Or that bullet in Osama Bin Laden's face.
Those worked out pretty well, didn't they?
More to the point, the whole thrust of Wetzel's cheap put-down -- which, I know, was really just using a thoughtless jab at DC to land a right hook on college football -- is nonsensical. Wetzel says Washington was built on graft, special interests and bad ideas, as if that makes Washington unique.
With that in mind, here's an open challenge for Dan: name a city or country or organization that wasn't constructed on a foundation of the same.
Excluding Narnia, of course.