RUSH: More developments with the situation in the National Football League. Somebody — I forget — no, it couldn’t have been Sports Illustrated that I read. I’ll find it. It doesn’t matter. Somebody has actually come out now and said that it is abundantly clear that the executive leadership of the National Football League is consciously and purposely steering the league toward the left, toward liberalism as an entity and that many of the owners in the NFL are not happy about this at all, including Bob McNair, who, as you know, was raked over the coals for claiming that we can’t let the inmates run the prison.
He claims he was talking about the league leadership, the executive team trying to tell the owners what they can and can’t do and after this story, I tend to believe that that’s probably true. That he wasn’t talking about his team, his own players or what have you.
RUSH: This is Ernie in Hartsville, South Carolina. Glad you called, Ernie. What’s shaking? What’s happening? What’s up there?
CALLER: Well, hey, Rush, really enjoy your show and appreciate what you do.
RUSH: I thank you, sir, very much.
CALLER: Yes. Well, that was a heartfelt story you just told about the book Tanker Pilot and a wonderful flag and the airmen, and I think we got a bit of a contrast. I want to go to the NFL and to the anthem protest, and I think the big brains of the NFL made a big mistake. I didn’t get too involved or incensed about the kneeling until this weekend. The NFL ran some what I consider slick public relations blitz. I don’t know if you saw it or not.
RUSH: Nope. Didn’t watch the NFL this weekend, was on the golf course.
CALLER: Well, they had some kind of an ex-pro spokesperson talking about a USO trip and how the military are the real heroes —
RUSH: Well, they do that every year. The football players, they gather together with the USO tour and some of them go, I forget under which auspices. But that’s not unique.
CALLER: Okay. Well, I took it, first of all, as all true but it did say in partnership with the NFL Players Association.
RUSH: Yeah, that’s right, that’s what I thought, that’s the union.
RUSH: They do this every year. They’re not doing it ’cause of the flag thing this year. I mean they may be hyping it now, but they do it every year.
CALLER: All right. Well, I feel a bit better, then. Because I just saw it as condescending and kind of equivalency of what the kneeling was and not really addressing the kneeling controversy.
RUSH: I understand. See, if you don’t know that this happens every year, that players go on the USO tour and you see it now, it’s the first time you’ve heard of it within the context of all this, I can understand why you’d be cynical about this and think that they are being cynical.
By the way, here’s something else that some of you may not know. And this was just uncovered by stealth discovery last year sometime. But many NFL teams over the course of many years have performed what looked to be like tributes to the military during pregame. Giant flags that cover the entire field, the national anthem being played, military bands and singers.
Guess what? The Department of Defense purchased every one of them. The NFL sold those availabilities. They were not gratis. It was not the NFL inviting the Army or the Marines or the Navy to come participate. Those were prepackaged and sold things the Department of Defense paid for. When that was revealed, there was some noses out of joint. That’s totally unrelated, by the way, to this current story and its iteration. But there’s more to it.
RUSH: Don’t forget, the Wall Street Journal with an editorial over the weekend that it is their opinion (and I don’t think there’s any doubt about this) that the NFL executive leadership — which would be the commissioner, Roger Goodell, and any number of others, the marketing people, the executive vice presidents… By the way, it is such a top-heavy organization. It is stunning to a lot of people how big the NFL headquarters has gotten and how many people there have nothing to do with the actual product on the field, and the owners are paying for all of this.
Well, I say “owners.” The fans pay for everything, but my point is that this income that the NFL’s generating, so much of it is going to top-heavy executives. I mean, the marketing executive is a woman that’s never been involved in football before but she’s got exceedingly left-wing, liberal credentials. But the fear is that this is actually — as an entity, as a corporate entity is actually — purposely being moved to the left, and a lot of people ask, “Why? What’s the point? This game has never been politicized to this point.
“Why do this? It cannot possibly be helping, as the evidence abundantly shows. It’s hurting! This is not what fans want. They don’t want the NFL to be conservative or liberal. They want it to just be what it was: An American classic. And it did have a lot of distinctly unique American cultural values, and they’re being blown up and watered down and taken over. You can feel it. The excitement for the NFL is just way, way down, and it’s been trending in this direction. The NFL advertisers, this is a story that… Where did this run? Da-da-da-da. Well, who’s this?
This is from our buddies at NewsBusters, but they’ve picked it up somewhere and I can’t… It doesn’t matter. NFL advertisers have said to NBC: Would you please stop showing the protests? It’s killing us! Just stop showing it. Now, of course, the journalists at NBC want to show the protests because anything that makes it look like… Let me just be blunt. Anything that appears to be anti-American is approved. It’s desired by journalists, sports journalists or otherwise. That’s why…
Would you believe, in every case where a team’s quarterback gets injured, everybody in the sports Drive-Bys says, “Colin Kaepernick! Gotta hire Colin Kaepernick!” Colin Kaepernick has filed a grievance against the league, for crying out loud, and he’s issuing subpoenas for depositions to owners and members of the NFL executive group to come testify to his premise that there’s “collusion” involving keeping him out of the game. (interruption) Yeah, it’s Mark Geragos. (interruption) Well, the league’s gonna try not to give that stuff up but the lawyer’s asking for emails and text messages and phone records and all kinds of stuff to try to prove collusion.
It’s all aimed at a settlement. They’re just pressuring everybody here for a settlement. But the Drive-Bys, the sports Drive-Bys love this because Kaepernick, to them, is a symbol of what’s wrong with America. If the NFL is part of what’s wrong with America… It’s senseless here. These people, everybody in this game — one way or the other — is killing it! The players are doing their part; the sports Drive-Bys are doing their part; the executive committee of the NFL’s doing its part. It’s the most amazing thing! The actions that this league is taking are doing great harm to the product.
You know, you can’t watch… You watch NFL Sunday Night Football. I didn’t watch a game last night. I caught the last 10 minutes of it and I watched the postgame, and the interviews with journalists after the game were all about the status of suspensions, the status of concussions, the status of Kaepernick, the status of this legal case or the status of that legal case. I said, “I thought this is a highlight show! I thought I’m supposed to be seeing what happened in the league today that I didn’t see ’cause I was on the golf course; instead of getting updated on every freaking legal case!”
The journalists doing the updating are just eating it up! It’d be like the guys that own the doughnut shop putting strychnine in every doughnut. Not enough to kill you but enough to make you sick over time to where you stop going to the doughnut shop. It’s the most amazing thing I’ve seen. There doesn’t seem to be anybody involved here that’s trying to save this league. Then Vin Scully! Have you heard about this? Vin Scully, who’d broadcast Dodgers games for 70 plus years…
Folks, the last year that Vin Scully worked, he did home games only for the Dodgers on radio, and that last year, sports journalists all over the country were praising Scully as one of the best. He was considered old-fashioned because he didn’t do social media and he didn’t have canned quips for a long foul ball, a long home run. He just described the action and he was a purist. But he was excellent. He was among the best, as 70 years behind the microphone would testify. But during his last year, constant praise.
Over the weekend Scully was somewhere making a speech and in a Q&A fater the speech he was asked about the NFL protest. He says he’s never going to watch another NFL game. (chuckles) Well, the sports media has totally turned on Vin Scully. Now he is a reprobate. Now he’s just an old man. His time has come and gone. He doesn’t know anymore what’s right and wrong. I got to thinking: You know, the whole time all of these sports Drive-Bys are praising Vin Scully, why aren’t they hiring more people like him instead of these cookie-cutter Ken Dolls that bring nothing to it?
But that’s just me. That’s just the radio guy in me asking inside-baseball broadcast questions. But even Vin Scully said (summarized), “I can’t watch anymore. These flag protests, I can’t stand it.” He televised… By the way, he did play-by-play for NFL games on NBC for 10 years or so. He did golf and so forth. I met him once at the Kansas City Royals locker room. He was talking about Juan Valdez and Colombian coffee at the time with one of the coaches. (interruption) Well, Juan Valdez, you know, was the figure in Folger’s coffee.
Jose Martinez was coach for the Royals and they were having this big yuk about Juan Valdez (laughing) who was a character, fictional character, the guy that supposedly was the farmer in Colombia growing the beans. But he was just a prince of a nice person, and it was amazing how one comment and he’s become public enemy number one among people that were stinging his praises just a year or two years ago. Now NFL advertisers are asking NBC to stop showing player protests. Do you think that’s gonna stop this? Don’t show the horrible thing that’s going on and it’s gonna get better?
I mean, people in the stands are still gonna see it — and, by the way, with social media they’re still gonna see it. That’s not the answer. Stop showing it?
RUSH: Here’s Vin Scully from Saturday night in Pasadena at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium. The moderator said, “What are your feelings on the NFL players protesting during the national anthem?”
SCULLY: I have only one personal thought, really, and I am so disappointed. And I used to love, during the fall and winter, to watch the NFL on Sunday. And it’s not that I’m some great patriot. I was in the Navy for a year — didn’t go anywhere, didn’t do anything.
SCULLY: But I have overwhelmingly respect and admiration for anyone who puts on a uniform and goes to war. So the only thing I can do in my little way is — not to preach — I will never watch another NFL game.
RUSH: This was an event called An Evening with Vin Scully at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium. I know what he means. “Sad” is exactly right. That’s exactly the word. When this all started, it just made me sad ’cause I knew it was never gonna be the same, for me. Never was gonna be the same. The genie’s out of the bottle now.