Random Roger’s House of Hypocrisy
Commentary by PalmerSucks
July 27, 2014
Well, the verdict’s in for Ray Rice, and the league’s laid down the law: he’ll miss the first two games of the 2014 season.
Keep in mind this is the same Ray Rice who’s been: a)charged with assaulting his girlfriend and; b)caught on camera dragging her nearly unconscious self out of an elevator.
Congratulations Ray! You’ve just gotten off easy compared to Ben Roethlisberger – aka “the guy who’s never even been charged with jaywalking.” Big Ben, if you recall, got a big fat six-game suspension (later reduced to four after he agreed to a kiss-the-ring meeting with the commissioner.)
Final score: booked and charged 2, not booked and never charged, 4.
Welcome to Random Roger’s House of Hypocrisy, where double standards rule, and justice depends on what mood the man’s in that day. You’d think that what Rice did might tend to violate the league’s hallowed personal-conduct policy a bit more than, say, whatever the heck Ben supposedly did -- but no. In Goodell World, Rice’s proven bad conduct somehow isn’t quite as bad as Roethlisberger’s alleged bad conduct.
You think that’s unfair? Well then, you probably haven’t heard the one about the NFL owner whose company recently got busted running a phony coupon scam:
“Pilot Flying J, whose chairman and CEO is Cleveland Browns owner Jimmy Haslam, has agreed to pay a $92 million fine as punishment for the company's role in a scheme to withhold rebates from some of its customers. According to federal prosecutors, Pilot Flying J acknowledged it had defrauded customers of more than $56 million and that its employees had fabricated documentation.”
Wait til the commissioner gets a load of this one! Why, if he suspended Roethlisberger for six games, then what will Haslam get: six years? I mean, here we have both a federally charged crime, and, at least, a de facto admission of guilt. Oh this is gonna be good!
And you can bet it will be good, because you know what will happen to Haslam? Absolutely nothing. I know, because the NFL has pretty much said so.
Tell us, NFL spokesman Greg Aiello, just how the league feels about Jimmy Haslam and his fraud follies:
“There have been no allegations of any personal conduct that is in violation of NFL policy.”
Why, of course there aren’t, Mr. Aiello. Because nothing says “good personal conduct” like having to pay a massive fine for your company’s fraudulent activities. Nothing to see here, folks, move along, and while you’re at it, stop reading the goddamned newspaper! (Keep this in mind, though, the next time you hear Mr. Haslam tell Johnny Manziel how “disappointed” he is in the young QB’s own personal conduct.)
Now I realize it’s kind of a joke to think that the NFL, made up of team owners, would actually hold one of its own to the same standard as its rank-and-file. But if you look up what that hallowed personal-conduct code says, you’ll find it claims to apply to everyone who works in the NFL, including its owners. At least have the decency to change that rather hard-to-swallow language, if nothing else.
And by the way, if the crime of fraud isn’t one of those “allegations of personal conduct… in violation of NFL policy,” then maybe you want to take another look at said policy? ‘Cause I’d say your moral compass is just a wee bit off these days.
Of course, the league will likely hide behind the fact that Haslam’s company will pay the fine and avoid criminal charges. Or that Haslam himself may never face any charges. Which again would be bullshit, since, to use the line Goodell did when he bestowed upon Roethlisberger the honor of being the first player in league history to get suspended without being charged with any crime: “sorry, pal, but the conduct policy allows me to bust someone any time I think the league's integrity and reputation are at stake, period, end of story.”
You know things are getting bad when even league-lackey ESPN is commenting publicly (“Is Roger Goodell getting soft?” http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/id/11261498/ray-rice-suspension-continues-trend-softer-roger-goodell) The article even suggests an ulterior motive for Goodell’s recent adventures in double-standardness: namely, to soften the future blow for Colts owner Jim Irsay, about to face his own adventures in personal conduct.
But should we be surprised? After all, this is the same guy who meddles with the rules in the name of “player safety,” while campaigning for an 18-game season, and more concussions than ever. Of course, the reason for such both-sides-of-the-mouth talk is obvious. Just like the commissioner’s double standards, it’s all about the Benjamins, baby!
In the papal regime of Pope Hypocritus I, aka Random Roger Goodell, the message is clear: get busted for fraud, and you’re fine. Get charged with assault, and, well, you’re not fine, but don’t worry, you’ll only have to miss a couple of games. Just don’t let me catch you NOT doing anything wrong, because then you’re in real trouble, buddy!
Recently I received an email from a buddy with his own take on the Rice suspension: “The moral of the story is – Ben shoulda knocked the bitches out on camera!” Maybe, but I wouldn’t put it past Goodell to have suspended him anyway – then auctioning off the broadcast rights to the highest network bidder.