Frank McCourt: The Final Days of the Regime Are Finally Here

2 11 2011

It’s no secret that this blog has not been friendly to Dodgers’ owner Frank McCourt. We’ve been the home to the Frank McCourt Death Watch, during which we have compared him to a parasite, insinuated that he may be one of the worst human beings in history, and had noted sports manager Joe McGrath author a definitive take on the sliminess he personifies.  Now that McCourt has announced he is putting the Dodgers up for sale, it is time for us to take what may be a final look at the final days of the McCourt regime.

1) Remember When You Could Shoot Looters?

Here’s the story from last week that had absolutely no “shock” value, other than the use of the word “loot.” That’s a pretty strong verb considering how lawyered-up this whole mess has been. “Looters” conjures images of people scavenging the bones of disaster victims; people who get shot by the National Guard.  But the real hilarity comes when you break the story down.

Dodgers owner Frank McCourt looted nearly $190 million from the Los Angeles team, using the money for non-baseball use in violation of Major League Baseball rules, according to Delaware bankruptcy court documents filed on Monday.

It’s the first time the league has specified an amount, according to a report in a Los Angeles newspaper.

MLB Commissioner Bud Selig wants to oust McCourt.

First of all, no kidding Selig wants McCourt out. That sentence qualifies this story for the “Thank you, Captain Obvious” award.  But the key is that verb “looted.” Just look at the thesaurus entries for “loot” as a verb.

  • Main Entry: despoil
  • Part of Speech: verb
  • Definition: ravage, destroy
  • Synonyms: denude, depopulate, depredate, deprive, desecrate, desolate, devastate, devour, dispossess, divest, loot, maraud, pillage, plunder, raid, rifle, rob, sack, spoil, spoliate, strip, vandalize, waste, wreak havoc, wreck
  • Main Entry: embezzle
  • Part of Speech: verb
  • Definition: steal money, often from employer
  • Synonyms: abstract, appropriate, defalcate, filch, forge, loot, misapply, misappropriate, misuse, peculate, pilfer, purloin, put hand in cookie jar, put hand in till, skim, thieve
  • Main Entry: gut
  • Part of Speech: verb
  • Definition: clean out, strip
  • Synonyms: bowel, decimate, despoil, dilapidate, disembowel, draw, dress, empty, eviscerate, exenterate, loot, pillage, plunder, ransack, ravage, rifle, sack
  • Main Entry: knock off
  • Part of Speech: verb
  • Definition: steal
  • Synonyms: filch, knock over, loot, pilfer, pinch, plunder, purloin, ransack, relieve, rifle, rip off, rob, thieve
  • Main Entry: maraud
  • Part of Speech: verb
  • Definition: pillage and plunder
  • Synonyms: despoil, forage, foray, harass, harry, loot, raid, ransack, ravage, sack

So, let’s look at what brought such a strongly loaded term. Major League Baseball asserts that McCourt broke at least one of the baseball “Ten Commandments” when he diverted team revenue to a non-baseball use.

Allegedly, McCourt misappropriated the following figures:

  • $73 million in parking revenue through Blue Land Co., a non-team related entity
  • $61 million in team revenue to pay off personal debts
  • $55 million from team revenue for personal use

“The Dodgers are in bankruptcy because McCourt has taken almost $190 million out of the club and has completely alienated the Dodgers’ fan base,” the league said.

Major League Baseball asserts this violation is grounds for termination of McCourt’s franchise. Do you think it is a coincidence this story broke last week and a scant few business days later the Dodgers are literally on the auction block?

2) The Last Great Act of Douche-Baggery

Anybody who has been following the McCourt saga knows there have been several layers of lawyers involved in this mess. One of those layers revolves around the Bryan Stow situation.

In case you’ve forgotten,  Stow is a San Francisco Giants fan who, for the cardinal sin of having a few beers during a Dodgers-Giants game on opening day in March, was beaten nearly to death in the parking lot of Dodger Stadium. Stow hasn’t seen the outside of a hospital or rehabilitation center, which obviously has run up some seriously hefty medical bills.

In order to pay these medical bills (which Stow’s lawyer Thomas Girardi has said could head north of $50 million), a civil suit was filed against McCourt; the contention being  “security at the stadium was inadequate and lighting in the parking lot was insufficient, and that the organization did not promote responsible alcohol consumption.”

Naturally, that sort of liability has to factor into any sort of bankruptcy proceeding, which of course McCourt is embroiled in.  This means Stow’s representatives are on the official committee of creditors, which means you can tack on Stow’s medical bills and various damages to McCourt’s, which makes Stow a “wild card” in McCourt’s upcoming critical bankruptcy court hearing.

So what does McCourt do in advance of this hearing? Blame the guy who got his brain spilled all over the Dodgers’ parking lot.

Another controversy around beleaguered Dodgers owner Frank McCourt erupted last week when an attorney defending him against a lawsuit brought by the family of Bryan Stow raised the possibility that Stow might be held partly responsible for the beating that left him brain damaged.

“In 23 years, I have yet to see anything at Dodger Stadium involving any form of altercation that didn’t involve at least two willing combatants,” Jerome Jackson, the attorney, said on an ESPN radio talk show. He cited a report in Sports Illustrated that Stow’s blood alcohol level when he arrived at the hospital was 0.176%, more than twice the legal limit in California for driving. (Not that Stow was driving when he was attacked.)

This is exactly why people hate lawyers. Jackson’s logic is akin to a drunk driver saying to the mother of child he just ran over “You should have kept your damn kid off the road in the first place.” But the douche-baggery gets even worse.

“I find it flabbergasting,” Jackson said, “that there’s this groundswell of animosity if not hatred toward McCourt and the Dodgers, but there doesn’t seem to be any public anger against the guys who did the beating.”  To the contrary, what is flabbergasting is that Jackson doesn’t understand the depth of fan anger at McCourt in general. As Jackson points out, the McCourts did not beat up Bryan Stow. But certainly Dodgers fans feel bruised by McCourt’s woeful stewardship of the ballclub.

That’s a pretty big slice of sophistry if ever I saw one. Not only is that argument intended to make you believe none of this was McCourt’s responsibility, but it is also setting up the ugly, yet all too real legal strategy behind this obfuscation of the facts.

It’s hard to believe Jackson wasn’t posturing when he said he doesn’t understand why the alleged assailants have not been named in the civil suit. The Stow family attorney, Thomas Girardi, says naming them would only delay the suit because their testimony would probably not be available until after their criminal trial. Meanwhile, a civil jury can assign a percentage of responsibility to the assailants, even if they are not named in the suit.

McCourt’s lawyers will surely come out swinging at trial, but they should respect the injured plaintiff. One of McCourt’s problems has been his consistent cluelessness about the public relations effects of his decisions. Neither he nor Dodgers fans need to see his lawyers making a similar blunder.

It’s that last sentence that holds the key. McCourt simply doesn’t get that he continues to make himself look like a complete asshole, and that the court of public opinion has a lot of power.

But, the real question is exactly what kind of douche is Frank McCourt?

3) Finally, A Sale

At long last, baseball’s long national nightmare is over.

Embattled Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt and Major League Baseball reached an agreement late Tuesday to sell one of the sport’s most storied franchises, ending a seven-year run that included four trips to the postseason before recently becoming mired in legal troubles capped by a filing for bankruptcy protection.

A joint statement said there will be a “court-supervised process” to sell the team and its media rights to maximize value for the Dodgers and McCourt. The Blackstone Group LP will manage the sale, which could include Dodger Stadium and the surrounding parking lots.

The announcement came as the Dodgers and MLB were headed toward a showdown in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware at the end of the month as mediation between both sides was ongoing.

No matter what happens, there’s two things that need to come from this sale.

First, I want to never hear the name “McCourt” ever again.  If there were a way to have both Frank and that rat-faced ex-wife of his deported to some sort of leper colony, we need to get that done. Throw in anybody named “Kardashian” on that list as well (but that’s another story.)

Second, and most important, we must never let Bud Selig off the hook for this fiasco. We must never forget it was Selig who created this mess, and we must ensure he is held accountable for that; a trip to that same leper colony would work for me.





Frank McCourt Death Watch: One Legal Ball-Kick Down, Several More To Go

24 10 2011

It’s been a busy week here at the Dubsism offices. without going into great detail, the bottom line is we are a couple days behind a story we’ve been following all summer.  In other words, America’s long national nightmare is over: The McCourt’s have finally reached a settlement in their divorce which kept the Los Angeles Dodgers in ownership limbo.

You read that correctly. The divorce which was baseball’s equivalent of Tiger Woods and Elin Nordegren now seems to have finally ended in a settlement last week. So, now we can get back the regular-scheduled business of heaping scorn and derision on the Dodgers…just as soon as we figure out who is going end up owning this team. Initial reports state Jamie McCourt as part of the deal relinquished any claim to the team.

Frank and Jamie McCourt have reached a divorce settlement under which she would get about $130 million and relinquish any claim to a share of the Dodgers, multiple people familiar with the agreement told The Times.

The settlement would remove Jamie McCourt as an obstacle to Frank McCourt’s plan to retain ownership of the team by selling the Dodgers’ television rights in U.S. Bankruptcy Court. The agreement also would appear to set up a winner-take-all court showdown for the Dodgers between Frank McCourt and Commissioner Bud Selig.

The key phrase in all of that is “winner-take-all court showdown.” While McCourt succeeds in wrestling claim to the Dodgers out of his ex-wife’s rat-like claws, he really is just setting himself up for more legal testicle-kicks.

Here’s the beauty of this…McCourt, having run the Dodgers into the financial crapper, manages to escape from what may very well be the costliest divorce in the history of the state of  California history only to run right back into Osama Bud Selig’s buzz-saw.

Look at Frank McCourt’s situation now. Being rid of the ex-wife and any of her claims to the team is rumored to cost him about $130 milllion.  The divorce itself racked up an additional $20.6 million in legal bills, and the pissing contest over whether the Dodgers were community property chalked up at least another $14 million.

By my finger-and-toe math, that is at a minimum additional $164.6 million down the drain. Why is that important? Because it adds to the total tab it is going to take to excise the butt-nugget known as Frank McCourt from baseball.

Here’s how this works…McCourt’s entire purpose for entering bankruptcy with the Dodgers into bankruptcy was to keep the team…he stated and acted like from Day One that he will give up the Dodgers when his cold, dead fingers are pried from the team. Part of that bankruptcy deal was the court ordered major league baseball to provide a $150 million loans for operating capital.

Now, two things have happened that will kill the viability of that arrangement. First, there is the aformentioned divorce settlement. Not only does it bring up the additional liabilities, it adds the complication that nobody seems to know if the Bankruptcy Court would allow McCourt to use money from any television deal to satisfy a divorce settlement.  Bud Selig wouldn’t allow that, which is one of the main reasons he killed McCourt’s multi-billion deal television with Fox.

The McCourts had reached a tentative divorce settlement in  June 17, but that agreement was contingent upon the approval of the proposed television contract between the Dodgers and Fox.  Selig would not allow the use of funds from a Dodger telelvision to fund McCourt’s divorce; almost half of an immediate $385-million payment from Fox would have been diverted from the Dodgers to satisfying the divorce settlement.

That’s nut-kick number one.

If only McCourt knew how to shut up.

Then there is the issue of the Dodgers’ debt load and tax liability having increased to the point where repaying the $150 million loan assumed as part of the bankruptcy funding and meeting those liabilities could wipe out much — if not all — of whatever profit he would make if he is ordered to sell the team.

That’s nut-kick number two.

While it has been McCourts intention to keep the Dodgers, Bud Selig has asked the Bankruptcy Court to order the Dodgers sold.  Now with his ex-wife out of the picture, there is really only one way McCourt can avoid being forced into a sale. First, he needs the Bankruptcy Court to deny Selig’s request. Then, he needs the same court to grant an auction of the Dodgers’ television rights, a move that would be legally opposed by both  Selig and Fox Sports. After all that, he still needs to come up with $130 million free and clear of any Dodger money to keep the ex-wife from returning to the picture.

That’s nut-kick number three.

Even you have to know the rules, Frank…three nut-kicks and you’re out.





Frank McCourt Death Watch: Dodgers Strike Deal With MLB To Stay Alive For $150 Million More

6 08 2011

The Frank McCourt Saga in Los Angeles is like the psycho-killer in one of those “Slasher” movies who just won’t die. In the latest development, the Los Angeles Dodgers have reached an agreement to accept as much as $150 million in loans from Major League Baseball to keep the team afloat as it works its way through bankruptcy.

The deal announced in court papers Friday, does contain language that would not allow the default on this loan to give MLB the right to take control of the team.

Blah, blah, blah…

While the parties submitted their proposed agreement to Bankruptcy Judge Kevin Gross in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Wilmington, Delaware, the question remains: How long until MLB gets rid of Frank McCourt?

First, the legal aspects…

The proposal (the case is In re: Los Angeles Dodgers LLC, U.S. Bankruptcy Court, District of Delaware, No. 11-12010) was the result of negotiations ordered by Gross after the Dodgers initially tried to accept a loan from a unit of JPMorgan Chase & Co instead of the league.  Gross said it was “unclear” how the Dodgers expected to operate “within the framework of baseball” if they were unwilling to cooperate with MLB, adding that the league’s deal would save the team $14 million.

Attorneys for the Dodgers said their hesitation was rooted in covenants included in the deal that could allow MLB Commissioner Bud Selig to seize the team. The Dodgers agreed to negotiate with the league after the league promised to remove the that language.

Now for the business end…

This $150 million has to be used for two things – 1) keep the team operating 2) buy time until the Dodgers can sell TV rights, which should put it on a sound financial footing. However, who knows what will actually happen as long as McCourt and his team of lawyers are in the picture?

Well, guess what? There’s all sorts of other ways Selig can flush the Dodger toilet so the turd known as McCourt. Selig’s hand is around the Dodger throat as long as a federal judge says financing can only come from MLB. Oh, and there’s that whole divorce issue yet to deal with as well.

The bottom line…It is time for McCourt to go. Let’s make it happen.





Get To Know ‘Em – Astros’ Probable New Owner Jim Crane

13 07 2011

Yeah, I know it isn’t official yet.  But Jim Crane is set to become the new owner of the Houston Astros; hell, someday we might even officially announce it.

Houston businessman Jim Crane  and current owner Drayton McLane agreed to a $680 million sale in May.  McLane said at the time he expected the deal to gain league approval by mid-July. However, Osama Bud Selig and the geniuses who run Major League Baseball have seen fit to keep Crane waiting in the lobby flipping through old magazines.

The prevailing attitude is the deal won’t be approved until the MLB owners meetings on August 18. Naturally, that could put a pinch on any deals the Astros might want to make in advance of the upcoming non-waiver trading deadline, July 31.

However, Crane and his people have been treated like a President-Elect; they have been given access to documents and have been consulted on personnel decisions including the release of veteran Bill Hall and the firing of pitching coach Brad Arnsberg.  The expectation is they will continue to to be involved in any trade decisions even if the sale has not yet been approved.

This begs a million dollar question: If you are allowing Crane and his people a seat at the Astros’ decision-making table, it seems a safe assumption the sale is going to be approved. So why is Crane being left to idle in Osama Bud Selig’s purgatory?

The problem is twofold.  First, Jim Crane is largely unknown.  Up or down, McLane is known in Houston as “Uncle Drayton.”  That sort of familiarity engenders respect or breeds contempt, which leaves Crane in an awkwardly neutral position.

This guy knows about mustaches and Drayton McLane. Now its time to learn about Jim Crane.

That’s why here at Dubsism have dug up some facts which both will educate baseball fans about this new probable owner and doom his candidacy; it seems Selig may be holding this guy up because he isn’t the usual parasite who has been ushered into ownership under Osama Bud Selig and the rest of the MLB Taliban.

1) Jim Crane is no carpet-bagger

Unlike Frank McCourt, Jeffery Loria, and many other owners who don’t live in the cities in which they own franchises, Jim Crane has lived in Houston for nearly three decades, and has built several monstrous piles of cash there.

2) Jim Crane is a self-made man

Crane arrive in Houston from Kansas City in 1982 towing his whole life in a rented U-Haul trailer.

3) Jim Crane know how to build an organization

Crane’s first company was called Eagle Global Logistics. At it’s inception, it consisted of one employee and one truck. When Crane sold it for $300 million, it was a major player in the world of international freight with 11,000 employees and a client list including Nike, 3M, and Target.

4) Jim Crane has a loyal inner circle of friends

When you don’t know about a man’s character, look at his friends. Crane has a small circle of close friends who didn’t take the opportunity to get some cheap publicity for themselves by dropping the dime on Crane when the media was itching to get the scoop on the Astros’ new owner.

5) Crane is a baseball guy

While he was not a major-leaguer, Crane was a Division II baseball star at the University of Central Missouri in the 1970s. He was an honorable mention Division II All-American as a pitcher, notching a 21-8 record with a 2.42 ERA for UCM.

6) Crane is still a “sports” guy

Tons of high-level executives in this country can play some serious small-ball, but Crane is regarded as the best golfing CEO in the country.  You can buy a bag full of high-tech sticks, you can buy memberships at the best country clubs, but you can’t buy a swing.

If those six facts don’t tell you this guy is no McCourt or Wilpon, don’t forget this guy was in a partnership with the suddenly-popular Mark Cuban on two occasions, once to buy the Chicago Cubs and once to buy the Texas Rangers. Of course, his association with Cuban may be what sticks under Osama Bud Selig’s turban, but the baseball Taliban is running out of guys who can bail out the mess they’ve created.





Frank McCourt Death Watch – Day 25: I’m on the Same Side as Steve Garvey. Wait, What?!

11 07 2011

Frank McCourt Death Watch – Day25: The Day IT Happened

No matter what else happens in the Dubsism coverage of the final days of the McCourt regime in Los Angeles, this will be a day of infamy. Those of you that know me, those of you who have been readers of this blog, you know I have been a life-long hater of the Los Angeles Dodgers.  As such, to this point I have considered Dodger legend Steve Garvey to be a scourge on baseball as horrible as astroturf and those powder-blue, polyester uniforms of the 1970′s combined. Therefore, those of you that know me, those of you who have been readers of this blog may want to sit down before I make the following announcement. Follow this link for a musical interlude while we give everybody time to prepare for what will be a major annoucement.

Ready or not, here it comes.  Steve Garvey and I are on the same side of the McCourt issue. I’ll wait while you catch your breath.

Call it whatever you will, use whichever cliche you need – politics makes strange bedfellows, the enemy of my enemy is my friend, or Frank McCourt is a slimy cocksucker who deserves to be fed to giant flesh-eating cockroaches. In any event, Garvey and I now find ourselves in the same position as Franklin Roosevelt and Joseph Stalin in 1939. We may not like each other, but there is a far greater evil in the world; one so great that destroying it requires the alliance of former enemies.

Steve Garvey, the former iconic first baseman for the Los Angeles Dodgers, on Friday was fired by the team for his aggressive and public attempts to buy out embattled owner Frank McCourt.

Twice in recent weeks Garvey has taken his plans to the media, first to Fox, then to ESPN radio. In April he told the Los Angeles Times he’d formed an investment group that included billionaire Ron Burkle, although later he confirmed a Yahoo! Sports report that he’d overstated his financial relationship with Burkle. He has enlisted former Dodgers pitcher Orel Hershiser as part of his prospective management group.

In spite of heavy debt, an ongoing dispute with Major League Baseball and last week’s bankruptcy filing, McCourt has said repeatedly he would not sell the Dodgers.

Though he drew a regular paycheck from McCourt and had been asked by the club to cease efforts that would undermine McCourt’s ownership, Garvey continued to seek community and financial support.

Let’s be honest here, Garvey is the perfect owner for the Dodgers. I can’t have a guy like Mark Cuban own a team I hate; he might commit the cardinal sin of rescuing the Dodgers from their two-decade long funk.

First of all, just look at that picture of the Garv-ster. A 62-year old guy hanging on to 35 through cosmetic surgery and hair dye is perfect for the plastic, fantastic world that is Los Angeles.  Secondly, he allows me to continue hating him and this franchise all in good fun; Dodger fans love him and I love to hate him – its a match made in heaven. He’s another one of those “bleed Dodger Blue” types; Garvey’s affiliation with the Dodgers goes back 55 years when he was a batboy at the age of seven.

More importantly, Garvey has the most important quality for ownership under Osama Bud Selig’s regime; he has a shady financial past. Through divorces, lawsuits, and other entanglements,  Garvey has had a series of financial setbacks and left behind a trail of unpaid bills.

With the news of Garvey’s firing by the Dodgers, it is time to mount the campaign for Steve Garvey to be the new owner. With the qualities I’ve listed, her simply perfect. Not to mention, Garvey in the Dodger’s corner office ensures years upon years of fodder for Dubsism, and let’s face it, it really is all about me.





Five Current Events That Piss Us Off and Their Sports Equivalents

7 07 2011

Editor’s Note: This article is a collaborative effort between Dubsism and Ryan Meehan from First Order Historians. Ryan also has his own blog, East End Philadelphia, which is featured in our BlogRoll and it is well worth the read.

Today’s world gives us no shortage of things which make us want to stab ourselves in the eyes. Many of us retreat into the world of sports to escape the fetid sewer that is current events. The trouble is that if you think about it, the world of sports is simply a reflection of that sewer; as if ESPN were a constipated horse who has been fed nothing but Taco Bell for a month finally letting loose on a big mirror.

Yeah, it sounds like a far-fetched concept until you consider the following:

1) People who believe we were wrong for killing Osama Bin Laden

We only have two words for you Prius-driving sanctimonious assholes who think your diet of tofu and sticks gives you the right to opine on a war in which your very own tree-hugging ass has a stake; those of you who believes there is a justification for having a moral, ethical, or tactical disagreement with how we went about killing the world’s moist infamous terrorist.

Fuck you.

Let’s break down your arguments; doing so opens a veritable Pandora’s Box of stupidity clad in Birkenstocks wrapped a sheath of completely hypocritical pussification.

First there’s the moral – this was a military mission to kill the world’s most dangerous terrorist, one who got that distinction by killing tens of thousands of innocent people of various cultures in hundreds of terrorist attacks against various targets in various countries. However, just because America is amongst the list of countries upon which these atrocities were inflicted, and because you happen to hate America, somehow your education consisting of three semesters of community college allowed you to justify the evil of Osama Bin Laden. In other words, your “morality” allows for the slaughter of innocent people just because you think Wall Street is responsible for your inability to get a “real” job. Wall Street isn’t what is keeping you a 35-year old guy waiting tables; the fact that you spend all day smoking dope and whining about shit you are never going to get off your ass to change is.

Then, there’s the ethical.  Bartender, set up a shot of 190-proof Truth – sometimes, there is no other way to deal with bad people than to turn them into dead people. That’s why the goal of the mission wasn’t to put Bin Laden into a “time out;” the goal was to kill him.

These people are our enemies for a reason: They dedicate their entire lives towards making sure that we live in fear by killing innocent people. Not to mention, you can’t negotiate with somebody who is willing to die in the process of killing you; fanatics don’t believe in peace, they believe in death.

Now for the shot of 190-Proof Irony – all you dumbfucks who think this war is somehow America’s fault and love to spend all your time protesting don’t understand that if America were to lose it’s freedoms to these kind of people, your Birkenstock-wearing asses would be the first ones to get marched down into a gravel pit and machine-gunned. Go wave your hippie protest signs on a street corner in Teheran and see how long it takes you to end up with a rope around your fucking neck.

See, the dirty little secret is that democracies rarely lose their freedoms to military conquest; rather they tend to give them away because we allow people who contribute nothing to society to have an equal say about matters of common concern. Chowski had a great thought about this: “If you’re a dictator that holds people in oppression your entire life, the chances that you will die peacefully in your sleep are very slim.” Truer words were never spoken, but the converse is equally true: A democracy which does not defend its freedoms against all threats both foreign and domestic is destined to lose them.

In other words, you need to understand these people want to kill you just as much as they want to kill us. If you want to wait like cattle for the slaughter, that’s fine; nobody needs you. But stay the fuck out of the way of those of us who value our lives.

The Sporting Equivalent: Now that Bin Laden is gone, can the Navy Seals take out Bud Selig?

Let’s look at the similarities between the late uber-terrorist and Osama Bud Selig: Bin Laden has led a decades-long war against the West, Selig has spent decades destroying baseball from within. Look at some of Selig’s shining accomplishments:

  • Ushered into the ranks of ownership lowlifes like Frank McCourt, Fred Wilpon, and Tom Ricketts
  • Defaulted the real seat of power in baseball from the Commissioner’s office to owners like the late George Steinbrenner and Jerry Reinsdorf
  • Oversaw the explosion of salaries due to the irresponsibility of the owners, and blamed in on the players
  • Allowed a work stoppage that cancelled a World Series and shortened two seasons
  • Nearly allowed another work stoppage after the first fiasco
  • Got rid of a bunch of terrible umpires, only to replace them with worse ones
  • Threatened contraction – again blaming fans for the stupidity of owners
  • Ignored the whole steroid problem, then tried to act like some pretentious defender of virtue once he got off his pock-mark ass

Show me a bigger threat to his sport than Selig, and we can call off the Seals. Until then, I want the Seals to bring me his hollowed-out skull.

2) The Casey Anthony Trial

Thanks to the NFL Lockout, you would think that infant killing became our new national sport. You would think the gruesome details of the malicious, intentional death of two-year old girl would be anything that you’d want to hear about. Yet, you can’t turn on your TV without hearing more minutia about how some high school dropout couldn’t take the pressure of changing a diaper, so she killed her baby.

Sorry, but it’s not fascinating; it’s horrible. The problem is there are people out there who have this kind of dysfunction in their real lives, and if you happen to know these people, you see the kind of suffering the sort of selfish sociopathic bitch like Casey Anthony can inflict. J-Dub happens to know somebody who wanted grandchildren more than anything else in this world, then had her daughter threaten to get an abortion if she wouldn’t provide free day-care. What do you think the odds are of that kid ending up duct-taped in a Hefty Cinch-Sack the first time “Mommie Dearest” wants to hang out with her lowlife, druggie friends?

It all comes down to this. It is a genuinely terrible thing it took those kids for everybody to realize what worthless pieces of shit their mothers are. It’s hard to tell which is the bigger crime, a mother who fucks up her whole life with bad decisions, covers herself in tattoos, and finally loses the respect of her family whom she used and abused her whole life, then tries to opt out of her responsibility by killing her own child, then acts shocked when she is hauled in front of a jury to answer for it, or that same jury deciding that her long list of manipulative lies are a good enough reason to let a murderer take a hike.

Regardless of whether you are a baby-killer or a sucker juror, did you really think we all wouldn’t notice what was really happening here?

To that end, here’s the letter Meehan sent to America’s new sweetheart:

Dear Casey:

You a misanthropic bitch whom no one should feel sorry for and you sincerely deserve all of the psychological torture that you have endured. It is truly a shame that you will miss the chance to be repeatedly raped with a mop handle before eventually being beaten to death with a tube sock full of batteries in prison.

Warmest regards,

Ryan Meehan

Of course, he fucked up by accidentally mailing the letter to Elizabeth Smart. Boy, was his face red!!!

The Sporting Equivalent: O.J. Simpson

Americans really have trouble with stereotypes.  Murderers aren’t supposed to be sports stars or the “girl next door.” Maybe this is why two clearly guilty people like Anthony and Simpson got away with murder. Or it could be because both cases had prosecutors who couldn’t convict a ham sandwich.

In either event, what matters is that the more you shine a camera on something, the more confused the picture gets. With Anthony, it all became about whether or not she was a “good mother” and “accidental death;” with Simpson it was all about “if it doesn’t fit, you must acquit.” It was all enough to make people forget about the victims, which is a crime in and of itself.

3) Anybody whose last name is “Kardashian”

First of all, why the fuck are these wastes of oxygen famous in the first place? Beside the facts their father was one of those scumbag lawyers that allowed O.J. Simpson to get away with murder, and their step-father is some ex-Olympic hero who has had enough bad plastic surgery to make him look like the wife of a Romanian goat farmer, we both have become convinced they exist only for those times when you are stuck standing in line at the supermarket where they assail you from the cover of every one of those brain-softening tabloids.

It's only takes 4.7 Rebounds and 5.6 Points Per Game to tap that ass.

For the unpardonable crime of trying to buy a gallon of milk, I have to live through the “news” that one of these multi-talentless bimbos is pregnant, one of them is tired of being called fat, and another one is getting yet another series of spooge injections into her ever-widening ass which has become little more than a dick pin-cushion for every 2nd-rate pro athlete. Stop wasting my time with these stupid bitches until the “news” is about a fatal car accident, complete with photos of their corpses impaled on a guardrail.

Oh, and a hearty “Fuck off and die” to every one of you late-night talk show hosts who perpetuate this plague by giving these morons a forum in which they are allowed to speak like they are some sort of role model. Anybody who thinks a Kardashian has anything meaningful to offer should have their genitalia removed with a hedge-clipper to save future generations from this mental gonorrhea.

Since they want to eye-rape all of us with their reality-show bullshit, here’s how we really give it some spice. We turn the show into a game-show style contest, where these three compete with each other doing what they do best, exploiting their own alleged sexuality. The stunts they have to pull become increasingly difficult as the game goes on, with the ultimate goal being like a “snuff” film; all three of them choking to death on a flaming railroad tie.

The Sporting Equivalent: Danica Patrick

Yeah, I know we’ve beat on her before, but she representative of the same problem. She exploits her supposed sexuality, which covers for the fact she’s never won a fucking thing, which covers for the fact she is about as important to racing as a quart of engine sludge.

Not to mention, I wouldn’t mind seeing her get the flaming railroad tie treatment.

4) The “Angry Birds” app

Meehan works in the cell phone industry, which explains why the mere mention of this app causes him to turn purple and lose control of his body functions. For those of you who aren’t familiar, it consists of a slingshot on the left hand side of the screen. A bird is in the slingshot, and when you press the screen the bird flies across the screen and knocks bricks out of different structures.

That’s it. No explosions, no real mayhem, no large breasted comic-book style heroines flashing their wares. Just fucking birds.

Bea Arthur and Sam the Eagle -The original angry birds.

First of all, I’m shocked the ASPCA or PETA hasn’t gotten their collective tampons in a knot over this. They’d have no case, but neither do any of their other claims; but this is the perfect sort of meaningless shit they love to get all worked up over. If someone designed an application where you shot kittens out of a cannon, even if they landed on giant white fluffy pillows we’d never hear the end of it from either of those two groups.

So, basically Arkanoid wasn’t good enough, so we killed it, but people had the desire to shoot bird-like characters across the screen and to fill that need, we got this shit. Fuck that noise, Arkanoid was awesome.

The Sporting Equivalent: ESPN3.com

If you wanted proof ESPN really doesn’t get what its viewers want, just look at ESPN3.com, the World Wide Leader’s attempt at streaming sporting events on-line. Your viewing selections include (whenever the site isn’t locking up your browser) such exciting events like AAU basketball, FIFA’s Under-17 World Cup, the American Le Mans Series Northeast Grand Prix (Qualifying Rounds Only), and the World Netball Championships, whatever the fuck that is.

Show me Danica Patrick and Hannah Storm doing a guest spot on the new and improved Kardashian Flaming Railroad Tie Hour and I’m totally there.

5) Bruno Mars and that awful “Grenade” song

Exaggerating is something that even I find myself doing quite a bit, but Bruno Mars does it to a level that is just over-the-top dopey. The perfect example lies in this cocksmoking tool’s song “Grenade.” Basically, he is using this song to tell the world he’s just another guy who has fallen in love, and therefore relinquished any claim to his balls. In short, he dick-fucks your eardrums for three minutes regaling you with tales of all the shit he would suffer through would suffer through for this girl. To be quite honest, I wish these weren’t figures of speech because I’d love to see this guy do any of this stuff he mentions in the song.

“I’d catch a grenade for love”

This is just stupid. Nobody catches grenades. Nobody expects anybody to catch grenades. Not to mention, since when does a gesture of love require A) a third party and B) military-grade explosives. Ladies, if you are dating Bruno Mars, this line likely means he thinks it would be the “bomb” to have a three-way with you and his buddy who also couldn’t get laid in a women’s prison even if he had a fistful of keys. So, unless you want to end up on the old “spit-roast,” you need to ditch this clown. Face it, only a guy who can’t get laid would go to the extreme of grenade-catching.

“I’d jump in front of a train for love”

That actually sounds pretty hardcore, until you stop to think about the logical extension. The whole point of some sort of “Grand gesture of love” is to get some chick to come across with some action. Even if your “gesture” moves her so much to give you the best head you’ve ever had in your life, the exercise is a bit pointless if your junk ends up floating in a jar down at the County Hospital.

“I’d do anything for love”

If you’d catch a grenade or jump in front of a train for her love, by this point she knows you’re desperate. Saying “I’d do anything for love” just means she can’t wait to hear the next dumbass stunt you’re about to propose; meanwhile she’s thinking about all the practical stuff you will be doing for her just for the promise of a little trim. Next time she moves, guess who is going to get a fucking hernia lugging her shit up three flights of stairs? That would be you, “Mr. I would do anything for love.” Besides, Meat Loaf already covered this.

“I would die for you baby, but you won’t do the same…”

Well, not after that she won’t…You want to know why? You’ve already shown you aren’t worth dying for. Know what people die for? Things that matter, like the honor of duty for your country, or to save the life of another human being, not for some crybaby raisin-sac whose whole life seems to revolve around getting a piece of ass and making a complete douche-nozzle of himself in the process.

The Sporting Equivalent: Pay-Per-View Sports

This all starts back in the late 80’s, but it continues to this day. Today, it’s all that UFC, wrestling, and monster truck shit, but back in the day there was no better way to fleece the guy “who would do anything for sports” then to get him to pony up $50 for a Mike Tyson vs. Insert Future Corpse Here fight; one that inevitably only lasted 80 seconds.

See, the problem is since the guy “who would do anything for sports” is also “the guy who would do anything for love,” he’s blown all his dough romancing that chick who works at McBurgerQueen who has pimples and kind of a big butt, but has a first-class set of knockers. This means he’s invited all of his buddies over to watch the fight if they chip in on the cost.

It gets worse when the aforementioned lack of funds means he has to pass the hat for beer money, and while he’s hustling down to the Kwik-i-Mart in order to get back before the fight, the guy in line in front of him at the store is trying to buy something with a check, and by the time he gets back, Tyson’s opponent has long since been hit by the train, caught the grenade, or whatever other sort of analogy you wish to use for Tyson’s patented brand of “I’m gonna fuck you ‘til you love me”  prison violence.

Here’s the deal…Let that moment where you realize the replay just doesn’t have the same effect and you know it never will; let that moment be the one of clarity where you realize Pay-Per-View isn’t worth it, and neither is that chick at McBurgerQueen.

Stay tuned to Dubsism and East End Philadelphia for more up to the the minute advice on how to be undeniably awesome.

-J-Dub and Meehan





Frank McCourt Death Watch: Chapter 11

27 06 2011

Frank McCourt Death Watch: Day 6

Los Angeles Dodgers owner Frank McCourt filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy in an effort to prevent a takeover by Major League Baseball, Fox News reported Monday.

Color me shocked.

The guy’s been hemorrhaging money for years, he’s in the middle of the ugliest divorce in the history of divorces, and even an idiot like Bud Selig has turned on him.  One would think this might mean McCourt has had a moment of clarity; that he realizes the gig is up. Nothing could be further from the truth.  Look at the quotes in the following piece and you see the delusion level in McCourt’s head is still off the charts.

The Los Angeles Dodgers filed for bankruptcy protection in a Delaware court Monday, blaming the refusal of Major League Baseball to approve a multibillion-dollar TV deal that owner Frank McCourt was counting on to keep the troubled team afloat.

The Chapter 11 financing permits the Dodgers to use $150 million for daily operations and buys time for the team to seek a media deal, the team said in a news release.

“There will be no disruption to the Dodgers day-to-day business, the baseball team, or to the Dodger fans,” the statement said.

Uhh, Frank, did you notice that a guy who doesn’t get his paychecks from the Dodgers is now running the team, and has been for close to three months? Did you notice that the coverage of your franchise revolves more around legal briefs than box scores? Did you  notice three of the worst human beings ever to walk the face of the earth are in the following photo?

Stalin and Bud Selig were out getting a Dodger Dog.

See, the working theory here is that bankruptcy protection will provide the Dodgers with a process to address its immediate financing requirements by giving the team a chance to obtain the capital necessary to ensure it’s long-term financial stability.

Uh huh…and right after that happens, we can all go visit the Fairy Princess together.

McCourt said the Dodgers have tried for almost a year to get Selig to approve the Fox transaction. The deal would have provided him with $385 million up front and was vital to a binding settlement reached between him and his ex-wife and former Dodger CEO Jamie McCourt last week. McCourt now faces the potential of missing a June 30 team payroll without the TV funds and that could lead to a MLB takeover.

The McCourts have been embroiled in a contentious divorce where their lavish spending habits were detailed in court documents. The former couple took out more than $100 million in loans from Dodger-related businesses, records show.

In April, MLB took the extraordinary step of assuming control of the troubled franchise. Former Texas Rangers President Tom Schieffer was appointed to monitor the team on behalf of Selig, who said he took the action because he was concerned about the team’s finances and how the Dodgers are being run.

McCourt has maintained he met the criteria set forth by baseball officials in order for the TV contract to be approved and would amend the conditions if need be. The Dodgers’ current TV deal with Fox expires in 2013.

You see Frank, somehow for once Bud Selig has managed to not be an idiot. Everybody in the world can tell if you were to get that cash infusion from Fox, you would simply blow it on something not related to baseball…that’s what you’ve been doing all along.

Not to mention, there’s the whole problem of the deal that was rejected to pave the way for you to join the ownership ranks.  The McCourt’s paid $430 million, of which $9 million was in cash; the rest being assorted bits of string and magic beans.  Meanwhile, Eli Broad’s nearly all-cash bid for the same amount was rejected.

Then there’s the matter of your divorce…

The divorce settlement, now voided because of Selig’s decision, called for a one-day “characterization” trial Aug. 4 to determine if title to the Dodgers is in Frank McCourt’s name or if the team should be considered community property and sold. Sacks said the trial may be shelved and Superior Court Judge Scott Gordon could decide how to handle the former couple’s assets at a later date.

Gordon ruled in December that a postnuptial marital agreement that gave Frank McCourt sole ownership of the Dodgers was invalid. That cleared the way for Jamie McCourt, who served as the team’s CEO and was fired by her ex-husband two years ago, to seek half the team under California’s community property law.

Let’s be honest…you’ve fucked this up so badly you’re not even paying Vin Scully.  It is time for you to go away; even Hitler had a more gracious exit.





Dubsism: Your Home For The Frank McCourt Death Watch

21 06 2011

Frank McCourt Death Watch: Day One

It is time to start the countdown until Frank McCourt no longer owns the Los Angeles Dodgers. Everything seems to be closing in on him; there’s the divorce settlement which hinged on the TV deal, which Commissioner Bud Selig just rejected, which means we are headed for a one-day trial in August which will likely result in an immediate sale when the Dodgers are declared to be community property.

McCourt pondering if this is the suit he wants to be buried in.

Here is MLB’s “official story” on the matter.

“This decision was reached after a full and careful consideration of the terms of the proposed transaction and the club’s current circumstances,” commissioner Bud Selig said in a statement. “It is my conclusion that this proposed transaction with FOX would not be in the best interests of the Los Angeles Dodgers franchise, the game of Baseball and the millions of loyal fans of this historic club.”

The translation:

“We know killing this TV deal should drive the last nail in this asshole’s coffin, and the sooner we get rid of this guy, the better because once McCourt is gone, no one will ask questions as to why Selig approved this turd-loaf as an owner in the first place.”

Then, there is the matter of McCourt’s repsonse.

“We are extremely disappointed with the Commissioner’s rejection of the proposed FOX transaction which would inject $235 million into the Los Angeles Dodgers,” the statement read. “As Commissioner Selig well knows, this transaction would make the Dodgers financially secure for the long term and one of the best capitalized teams in Major League Baseball.

“Commissioner Selig’s letter of rejection is not only a disappointment, but worse, is potentially destructive to the Los Angeles Dodgers, and Major League Baseball. Accordingly, we plan to explore vigorously our options and remedies with respect to Commissioner Selig’s rejection of the proposed FOX transaction and our commitment to protect the long-term best interests of the Los Angeles Dodgers.”

Of course, it has a translation all of its own.

“Oh man, I’m soooo fucked. If it isn’t that bitch wife, it’s that cocksucker Selig. Why does everybody have to make being a lying, cheating scumbag so hard?”

Frank McCourt has already struggled to make payroll, and now that his last means of revenue has been strangled, there is a very real possibility that once he fails to meet his obligations on June 30, MLB could seize the team and force a sale.

Even if McCourt somehow manages to survive into August, the terms of the McCourt’s divorce settlement had set a one-day trial for Aug. 4 to decide if the Dodgers are solely the property of Frank McCourt or if the team is a marital asset to be split.

No matter how long McCourt survives, the minute the plug gets pulled, it seems McCourt is girding his loins for a protracted legal battle over MLB’s right to take over the team and/or to force Selig to approve the FOX deal.

As he runs out of options to stave off a complete MLB seizure, McCourt also digs in his heels for a protracted confrontation on baseball’s authority to exercise control on anything beyond the team itself.

Sources familiar with McCourt’s strategy indicated Monday that significant sources of Dodgers revenue would not be available to Major League Baseball or another owner without McCourt’s consent. These are said to include a $21 million annual lease obligation owed from the team to a McCourt entity for the club’s use of the parking lots surrounding Dodger Stadium and any ticket revenue in excess of the $6-7 million per year of service on certain McCourt debt, according to the sources. This year’s figures were not available, but the surplus cash after debt service exceeded $60 million in 2005. Both of these revenue streams are slated to stay with McCourt for at least 20 more years.

The lease payments and ticket sales revenue could act together as a poison pill discouraging what would be called in the corporate world a hostile takeover. Baseball’s recourse would most likely be legal action seeking a determination that such revenue cannot be diverted from team operations. McCourt’s counter could be that baseball has always had knowledge of these practices and, indeed, approved the separate sale of the team and surrounding land when McCourt purchased the Dodgers before the 2004 season.

The takeaway for fans is that McCourt likely will make a complete MLB takeover as painful as possible. After all, any money baseball spends running the Dodgers until a new owner is identified ultimately comes from the league’s other 29 team owners. Furthermore, the team is likely much less marketable to potential ownership groups if such significant revenue streams do not flow back to the team, but to McCourt entities.

While McCourt struggles to retain control of the foundering franchise, the contractual disposition of Dodgers revenue may indeed be a negotiating position aimed at extracting as much blood from baseball as he can while he still has some leverage. His camp is concerned that baseball will not get sufficient value in a sale of the club, and it is by far the most significant asset he has left.

Rejection of the deal signals both baseball’s desire to force Frank out of the game and its willingness to take high risks in doing so. Running the Dodgers without tens of millions of dollars of revenue and subjecting the sport to a potentially damaging lawsuit on the eve of a renegotiation of its labor deal are great costs, but ones Selig is evidently willing to bear.

The next step in this developing saga may be the commencement of that very litigation. McCourt may seek an emergency order barring Major League Baseball from denying the Fox deal and ultimately seizing the Dodgers. Such a lawsuit has likely been on the desks of McCourt’s attorneys for weeks, ready for just this sort of occasion.

At the end of the day, ultimately McCourt will soon not own this team for one simple, honest reason that no lawyers can change. The guy simply is out of money.





Guest Column: Joe McGrath on Frank McCourt and The Los Angeles Dodgers

6 05 2011

Editor’s Note: Mr. McGrath has long and storied history in the management of professional sports franchises, most notably as the general manager of the Charlestown Chiefs of the now-defunct Federal League. Oh, and this is probably a good time to mention that Mr. McGrath’s views are his own, and do not necessarily reflect those of Dubsism, our staff, or anybody else whose house you might want to burn to the ground.

For the love of God, I just don’t understand this. The shit happening with the Mets, that’s easy to understand. All that happened there was a few guys got greedy, now they are going to be broke. That story is more prevalent than pee smell in a bus station bathroom. But this McCourt guy must be the dumbest guy on the planet. I mean, the Dodgers were a great franchise once, but through a series of stupid decisions, he’s turned them into a Double-A team with a 60,000 seat stadium. Don’t get me wrong, there is nothing wrong with the minor leagues, there’s some great people in places like Charlestown and Peterborough. But Los Angeles has what, like 20 million people? That’s not a minor league market. It would take me fifteen home games in Charlestown to sell 60,000 tickets, and the goddamn Dodgers can do it anytime the Giants come to town.

Not to mention, this asshole McCourt owns the stadium, which means he controls the parking, the concessions, and all the other revenue streams. It also means he doesn’t have a landlord trying to bang him out of all that revenue. Back in Charlestown, I had a landlord that used to screw me out of every dime he could, and he never once tossed one of those dimes toward lube, if you know what I mean.

And on top of that, this guy had the commissioner of the goddamn league escort him into the ownership ranks, and it is that very same commissioner who is clipping his wings. This is why I keep asking myself how did McCourt fuck this up as badly as he did?

To me, the first mistake he made was making his wife the CEO of the team. Who in the hell wants to go to work every day and see their goddamn wife? Not mention, he didn’t make her the secretary or some other job fit for a woman, he makes her the goddamn CEO! Now, he has to listen to all her bullshit, from what flavor the urinal cakes are to which players you think she wants to fuck. Worse yet, when the marriage is over (like when he caught her banging her chauffeur) he not only has to divorce her, but fire her as well. And better yet, making her an officer of the organization punched a nice, fat hole in any pre-nuptial agreement they may have had.  This is exactly why all of us got to hear the accusations from Frank, in  a public letter no less,  about Jamie’s “insubordination, non-responsiveness, failure to follow procedures, and inappropriate behavior with regard to a direct subordinate (that’s the ‘fucking the chauffeur’ part).”

Oh, and for good measure, he changed the locks on her office.  Now, I’m no Dr. Phil, but shit like that tells me there were problems long before Frank found the chauffer’s dick in his wife. So, what could have possibly been wrong before the eve of the 2009 NLCS when Frank McCourt filed for divorce?

The first hint there was some crazy shit going on was when it came out the pair had hired a faith healer in Boston to watch Dodger games on TV and send “positive vibes” their way. I don’t even know what to say about that.

Then there’s Jamie, who while she refused to accept her firing, sent her chauffeur/fuck-buddy to Taiwan as an “Official Dodger Ambassador.” What the hell is that all about? Does she feel the need to make sure the Dodger disabled list never runs out of guys like Hong-Chi Kuo? Or is she worried about the future of the organization now that they let a talent like Chin-Lung Hu to escape to the Mets?

Then there’s the ownership of the stadium.  Frank McCourt owns the stadium, but he is playing a financial shell game by charging his own team big-time rent. The whole reason he is doing that is it somehow allows him to hide money from his ex-wife.  I understand not getting rooked on a divorce, but how much work do you have to go through to hide a roll of dimes? The  guy is broke, the Dodgers do not have the cash to meet their May 31 payroll, and this guy is telling me “everything is just fine.”

Here’s the part I really don’t get – what the hell is this deal $3 billion dollar deal with Fox all about? McCourt keeps saying all these problems go away if we could just get the trigger pulled on that deal. So, then why the hell isn’t that happening? Probably because nobody trusts McCourt’s book-keeping, and when you consider that Fox has already loaned McCourt a ton of cash, I’d be willing to bet there is some sort of “secret deal” between McCourt and Fox that  Selig wants no part of.  This is exactly why Selig made the move he did; he wants an honest accounting of the Dodgers’ finances, and it was clear that was never going to happen until he had McCourt’s balls in a vice.

So, after all that shit, McCourt still doesn’t get that the guy who brought him into the league can sure as hell kick him out? For that alone, this guy is the stupidest man on the planet.





Frank McCourt Needs a Minister of Information

4 05 2011

Do you remember this guy? His name is Mohammed Saeed al-Sahhaf, but you likely know him as “Baghdad Bob.”   We all came to know him during the 2003 invasion of Iraq, during which he was the Iraqi Information Minister under Saddam Hussein.

Realistically, he was a comical figure as a mouthpiece for Saddam’s regime; his specialty was laughably myopic and propagandized malarchy, extolling the invincibility of the Iraqi Army while the 3rd Infantry and 1st Marine Divisions were “Doing the Dougie” down main street Baghdad. The lies he spread were intended for an Iraqi domestic audience subject to Saddam’s cult of personality and total state censorship, but once they made it into the Western media, they were met with widespread howls of laughter and derision.

Frank McCourt should hire him immediately.

If you’ve heard any of McCourt’s recent appearances on sports radio, it is clear he is unable to sell his own bullshit; he clearly needs a professional.  McCourt continues to spout the Dodger party line that Major League Baseball’s seizure of the club is “Un-American” and that “nothing is wrong with the Dodgers” even in the face of reports that the Dodgers don’t have the cash to make payroll this month.

NEW YORK (AP)—Major League Baseball believes the Los Angeles Dodgers do not have enough money to make their end of May payroll, a person familiar with the team’s finances told The Associated Press. The person spoke Wednesday on condition of anonymity because MLB’s investigation of the team’s finances under owner Frank McCourt is ongoing. The Los Angeles Times first reported that the Dodgers lacked the cash to make their May 31 payroll. The person said that if the Dodgers don’t have the money, MLB would step in and make payroll.

“The fact that we had obligations coming due in 2011 was no surprise to us and no surprise to Major League Baseball,” Dodgers owner Frank McCourt said in a statement to the AP.

“We developed a plan which eventually became the Fox transaction. We’ve been working on that plan, in different versions, for the last six months,” McCourt said. “That is a transaction that is now completely negotiated, ready to be signed, and ready to be closed. It’s the series of delays in allowing us to close this transaction that has created the problem here. Otherwise, there would be no problem here. My recent investment into the club was necessitated by the delay.”

McCourt has publicly complained Selig has refused to approve a 17-year contract with Fox that could be worth more than $3 billion, a deal that would include a front-loaded payment of about $300 million.

The commissioner’s office effectively took control of the team on April 20, and former Texas Rangers president Tom Schieffer was appointed the team’s monitor six days later by baseball Commissioner Bud Selig.  Schieffer must approve any transaction over $5,000.

Based on its opening-day payroll of $103.8 million, the Dodgers’ payroll for its major league roster in the second half of May will be approximately $8.25 million. The figure includes 16 days salary, but not any signing bonus payments that happen to fall due.

McCourt, involved in a contentious divorce, took a $30 million loan from Fox, the team’s television partner, in the weeks leading up to Selig’s decision to appoint a monitor. Baseball was concerned that McCourt was removing assets from the franchise, once considered one of the premier teams in the sport.

Let’s imagine that instead of saying shit nobody believes himself, let’s say McCourt has hired the Minister of Information to do the bullshitting for him…

REPORTER: Is it true the Dodgers don’t have the money to make payroll this month?

MINISTER: Absolutely not. In fact, not only do we have the money for this month’s payroll, we actually have enough money to pay every salary of every employee on the planet for the next 5o years. We have deliberately portrayed ourselves in a financially weak manner to lure our enemies into a false sense of security.

REPRORTER: If that’s true, then why did McCourt take that $20 million loan from Fox.

MINISTER: Again, that was part of our deception. We have actually already repaid that loan in full, in cash wired into an off-shore bank account, and the Fox people trust us implicitly, so there was no need for such bothersome details like receipts.

REPORTER: Uh-huh…So then why such urgency to get the deal with Fox, and it’s front-load of $300 million.

No matter what Saddam McCourt says, his regime is over.

MINISTER: When you have as much money as we do, it is essential that you maintain a certain level of liquidity in all the important currencies – Deutschmarks, Francs, Pound Sterling, Japanese Yen, Monopoly, et cetera…One of our advisors, one who is no longer with us, gave us some erroneous advice that the stone currency used on the island of Yap was an excellent hedge against inflation, and once we invested $500 billion in that currency, we found it was nearly impossible on a near-term basis to trade back out of that platform.

You get the idea…and if the Minister of Information isn’t available, may I suggest Jon Lovitz?








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