Hart: Deflate-gate: Crime and punishment
For those late to “Deflate-gate,” let me save you some time: Tom Brady or Patriots coach Bill Belichick did it. They either knew or willfully looked the other way as the underlings they instructed let two pound of pressure out of their footballs. This makes it easier to throw and catch footballs and to avoid fumbles.
The NFL and Roger Goodell said they did not know or see anything. It’s as if the balls were deflated in an Atlantic City casino elevator.
Patriots owner Robert Kraft pointed to Belichick. Belichick pointed to Brady. Brady pointed to the ball boy. Obama instinctively blamed Bush.
Most likely, New England has been doing this for years. Since 2010, the Patriots have lost fewer fumbles per play, by 35 percent, than any non-domed team. Any statistician will tell you that is impossible. The league average is one fumble per 48 plays; in frigid New England, the Patriots fumble once every 73 plays. They got caught in past seasons when defensive backs intercepted Brady and kept the balls for a memento.
Tom Brady is a heart throb, luring many women to watch the Patriots. He married a super-model (which is like marrying two regular models), Gisele Bundchen. Sadly, we live in a society that expects this of a quarterback with movie star good looks, so he had no choice.
Brady is so gorgeous that he does not have to read linebackers at the line of scrimmage; he just weakens their knees with his dreamy, blue-eyed gaze. His rock-hard abs and taut body force defensive ends to confront their own sexuality before tackling him. Michael Sams was released from the Rams because he could not resist the desire to cuddle with Brady after sacking him.
Brady is known for throwing up a Hail Mary pass and seeing who comes down with it. It’s also his philosophy on contraception.
So what should be the punishment? Fearing further risk to its reputation, the NFL will not do much. The League is like the government; it never punishes its own, bows to unions and cowers in the face of tough decisions.
A committee will be formed to "look into it," which means it will stall. The NFL formed a committee to "look into" Ray Rice, Ray Lewis, etc. Its committees still have not reported on Ray Nitschke’s purported use of performance enhancing grimaces when he played for the 1968 Packers.
Then how does society penalize Tom Brady, et. al. for cheating? Our government has laws, rules, regulations, prosecutors, jails, judges, appeals, etc. It reminds us it is always just. Yet the quickest and most punitive way we get justice in America is via the pocketbook and corporate America, run by those “immoral, greedy capitalists” as liberals would have you believe.
Free market capitalism metes out economic justice. Tom Brady, whose reputation was already sullied by past scandals, does few endorsements. Now, Brady will get even fewer endorsements from America’s corporations. My best guess of the present cost to Brady in lost endorsement revenues from being dubbed a cheater: $35 million.
Class act Peyton Manning does 10 times the commercials. The 18-34 year old male demographic loves Peyton so much it makes Rick Santorum uncomfortable.
If you do not think this is true, check post-baseball endorsement deals for sluggers Barry Bonds, Sammy Sosa and Mark McGuire. Pete Rose has baseball’s most hits of all time, 4,256, but can’t get a job as a greeter at an Indian casino.
The best example is Tiger Woods. He was the #1 golfer in the world, with hundreds of millions in endorsement deals until he sped out of his driveway fleeing from his wife, hit a tree with his car, and twenty bimbos fell out. His endorsement deals evaporated and now he can’t play dead in a Western.
Only under pressure from $200 million-a-year sponsor Budweiser did the NFL attempt anything morally righteous in the Ray Rice fiancee beating case. It is a sad day when a booze purveyor has to define the moral high ground for you.
No matter what happens Sunday, New England is lucky to be in the Super Bowl. Under Obama, the Patriots are fortunate to be still sanctioned as an organization. They were almost shut down by Lois Lerner and the IRS several years ago when the “Patriot” in their name was mistaken for a Tea Party organization.
Ron Hart, a libertarian syndicated op-ed humorist, award-winning author and TV/radio commentator can be reached at Ron@RonaldHart.com or visit www.RonaldHart.com.