Monday, September 17, 2007

Ethics v. Ethics

I have listened curiously to the New England Patriots cheating. So much concern, so much emotion, so much real, for true, discussion and analysis. So much focus on the facts.

In this observation I cannot help but notice how much higher our expectations are for a sports team and its coach than the President of the United States and this country's Department of Justice.

It seems as if we now believe the U.S. government to be so perverted and dysfunctional that like East Berliners in 1972 we have given up all hope and expectation.

So like a life ring we cling to Sports as the last bastion of civility and normalcy and playing by the rules that we can expect to not be violated. We do this because we have long given up expecting our elected officials to behaving at the ethical level that we expect from athletes and their coaches.

Hence the recent comment by New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson:

"You know something is wrong when the New England Patriots face stiffer penalties for spying on innocent Americans than Dick Cheney and George Bush.”

Our Public Commons is so poisoned and fetid from being shat upon, that when a Bill Belichick or Barry Bonds gets caught breaking the rules of Sports we get doubly upset. They have burst two of our bubbles.

Sports is the bubble of ethics and fair play we retreat into precisely because our Real World of Laws is tainted and perverted and destroyed beyond repair. Bubble One and Bubble Two.

And when the Sacred Bubble of Sports becomes popped and ulcerated and bilious due to the same greed and corruption that has infected and popped the Bubble of our Public National Weal -- that has us now in an illegal war for nearly 5 years -- our heads blow a gasket. We can't take it anymore. We leak brain fluid.

This post is not about what it seems to be about.

This post is about the Hockomock Swamp in Easton, Massachusetts. The Hockomock is a 6,000 acre swamp that is now celebrating its 15,000th anniversary. It is the wildest, most impenetrable land left in southeastern Massachusetts, the home of Massasoit and his son Pometacom, whom the Pilgrims first met. The Hockomock is the soul of the birthplace of the United States.

The Hockomock Swamp is the tiny crystal galaxy attached to the collar of Orion the Cat in "Men in Black." It has survived 15,000 years and is now dying from the collective paper cuts of strip malls, highways, power lines, malls, condos, golf courses, condominiums. The Governor of Massachusetts, Deval Patrick, wants to kill what is left of the Hockomock by running a high speed rail line through the heart of it, solely because his "aides" do not even know the Hockomock Swamp exists.

To them, the Hockomock is just a swamp.

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