Friday, January 30, 2009

Yankeetorial: Is the Stimulus Package Enough?

The Cashman administration has spent more than $400 million this winter to forestall a Yankee collapse that could plunge the world into a depression not seen since 1929, when the famous Murderer's Row finished second.

The administration deserves credit for aggressively attacking the problem, rather than waiting until we're 8 games out in May. Yet key components of the team cast a shadow on the recovery that Americans desperately need.

Alex Rodriguez will return from a winter in which his personal life was transformed into a Federico Fellini movie subplot. Mariano Rivera is coming off surgery and turns 40 in November. Jorge Posada may not be able to throw to second base without yelping like that lead singer in Disturbed. Derek Jeter might be a leftfielder who plays shortstop.

This is no time to halt stimulus spending. The world cannot handle a Yankee collapse.

As Yankeeologists, we have long studied the cause-and-effect relationship between the Bombers and the international financial system.

Since their first championship in 1921, the Yankees have won pennants or averaged 90 wins per season in all but five distinctly rotten periods of American history. You can look it up:

1929 to 1931. During the Great Depression, 11 million workers lost their jobs, and the Ruthian Yanks never rose above second. Only after the New Deal re-energized the economy did the Yanks restore order. In 1932, they won the AL pennant by 13 games.

1944 and 1946. As World War II raged on, the Yankees fell from grace. They placed third in 1944, fourth in 1945, the year Hiroshima and Dresden were bombed. In 1946, labor protests crippled the nation, and the Yanks finished fourth. In 1947, at peace, they won the pennant.

1965 to 1975. In the summer of 1965, Lyndon B. Johnson dispatched 50,000 troops to Vietnam and 20,000 National Guardsmen to the L.A. neighborhood of Watts. That summer, the mighty Yankees fell to sixth. Over the next 11 years, as Vietnam evolved into Watergate, the Yanks averaged just 81 victories per season.

Their prospects began to change on March 15, 1974. That day, a Federal grand jury indicted President Richard Nixon as a co-conspirator in the Watergate coverup. Three weeks later, a Federal grand jury indicted George M. Steinbrenner for making illegal contributions to Nixon’s campaign. By the time the Yankees won their next pennant, in 1976, both Nixon and Steinbrenner had received Presidential pardons.

1982 to 1984. Soon after the Yankees fell to the Los Angeles Dodgers in the 1981 World Series, prompting Steinbrenner to attack an elevator wall, jobless rates soared to their highest peaks since 1968, (Note: That year Mickey Mantle retired a few weeks before the Tet Offensive).

Spurred by President Ronald Reagan’s arms build-up, and Steinbrenner’s increased arms spending, the Yankees averaged 94 victories in 1985 and 1986 but won no pennant.

On Nov. 25, 1986, the White House announced that arms had been shipped to Iran for hostages. The very next day, the Yankees shipped future Cy Young award-winning pitcher Doug Drabek to the Pittsburgh Pirates for Rick Rhoden.

1987 to 1994. On July 30, 1990, Baseball Commissioner Fay Vincent banned Steinbrenner from the day-to-day operations of the Yankees because he tried to buy dirt about outfielder Dave Winfield. Three days later, with the Yanks in last place, Saddam Hussein invaded Kuwait. The ensuing Gulf War led to an economic recession, ousting President George Bush Sr. from office.

In 1995, with the U.S. economy enjoying an Internet boom, the Yankees won their first pennant since 1981. During Clinton’s term, New York won four world championships.

2001-now. Six weeks after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attack, the reigning champion Yanks were stunned in a Game Seven loss to Arizona. They have not won a World Series since and have suffered some of the humiliating defeats in their history.

Last year, mirroring the economic collapse, the team did not even make the playoffs.

Today, our stimulus package is being harshly criticized by conservatives in Arizona, Atlanta and Texas. These Herbert Hoover owners want the Yankees to reign in spending, regardless of the cost to the world.

These greedy fukkin bastards actually want the Yankees to lose... despite the tragic costs to humankind. They want the World Series for themselves.
They love only gold.
Only gold.

We must not cave in to their demands.

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