Jason Garrett’s Plight (Screed #36)

November 9, 2010…

Okay, so unsurprisingly, assistant head coach and offensive coordinator Jason Garrett was chosen as the interim (possibly long term?) head coach for the Dallas Cowboys. He takes over a dreadful 1-7 team from his predecessor Wade Phillips. But will anything change? Not likely. No offense (pardon the pun) to Garrett but he certainly doesn’t inspire much confidence, along with QB Tony Romo’s prolonged absence, that anything will get better anytime soon. To think the Cowboys will end up with a record any better than 3-13, based on how badly they have been playing this season, is to hope for a small miracle. Garrett’s offense scored only 7 points Sunday night against Green Bay. Phillips’ defense gave up 45 points. Both failed miserably. This is a team that plays like they don’t give a damn. And that is simply unacceptable for America’s Team, especially with the talent that is on this club. Mistakes are made with alarming frequency – and dumb mistakes, at that. There’s been no consistency with the coaching, either offensively or defensively. So why will that all of a sudden change now that Phillips is out and Garrett is in? Don’t believe for a second that it will. Garrett has been an integral part of the ongoing problem.

Still, we feel sorry for Garrett. He will be hamstrung in his coaching decisions by the same meddlesome owner/general manager that his last six predecessors had to endure – the always colorful, spotlight-craving Jerry Jones. And if Mr. Jones thinks that simply changing head coaches is going to right this sinking ship, he is clearly mistaken – as he usually is. He spends a lot of money, gets good talent, clearly wants to win – but he always seems to go about it the wrong way. He doesn’t produce winning teams – at least not since the mid-1990s. He just puts together teams with lots of talent but too much drama and diva-like behavior.

One playoff win in 14 years is simply unacceptable for this billion-dollar, consistently underachieving franchise. And that win finally came last year, after more than a dozen wasted years. Then came 2010 and the wheels finally fell off the cart. And it will continue to stay that way until Jones realizes he needs to hire a real general manager and stay the hell out of the locker room. He needs to hire a head coach like Bill Cowher and let him do his job!

In the meantime, poor Jason Garrett will just be another casualty in the ego-driven universe of Jerry Jones. It’s Jones’ toilet – everyone else just swims around in it. Let’s hope Garrett can, at least, win a few games before being flushed down the proverbial hole.

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The End of Wade Phillips (Screed #35)

November 8, 2010…

We cannot even begin to tell you how embarrassed and disgusted we are at the 2010 season for our beloved Dallas Cowboys. Considering the fact that they were one of the teams chosen to go to the Super Bowl this year, coming off a fifth straight loss last night (a 45-7 shellacking at the hands of the Green Bay Packers), this has got to be the most disappointing season in Cowboys history. It will certainly end up in the top 3 worst seasons ever. We don’t see any end in sight to this losing streak. Next week they face the surging New York Giants, which could very well be another horrible outing for the weak and ravaged Cowboys. This is a team in complete free fall.

They continue to make mistakes that should only be made by high school teams. They are giving up points as fast their opposing teams can score them, and without Tony Romo at the helm, they are done for the season.

Head Coach Wade Phillips was officially fired today, and even though we liked him and don’t feel he is solely to blame for this mess, it was a certainly inevitable and much-needed move. He just seems to have lost all control and respect from his players. They are playing more and more like a team that simply does not care. There is absolutely no fire from any one of their players. They definitely gave up on their coach. 

Phillips, who got Dallas its first playoff win since 1996 last year, is a nice guy who simply does not have the temperament to crack heads and demand respect the way his predecessor Bill Parcells had. Defense, which is Phillips’ specialty, seems to have all but vanished. He clearly had to know his time was finally up.  

We feel, though, that the real reason why Dallas is so horrendous this year is squarely the fault of egomaniacal owner Jerry Jones. His constant meddling and micromanaging, and obvious desire to only surround himself with coaches who will not stand up to him, is the reason why he lost brilliant coaches like Parcells and Jimmy Johnson in the past. His constant poor choices in the draft, as well as trading for troublesome, arrogant players that refuse to play as part of a team, are also factors that have contributed to Dallas’ woes.

We guarantee that Dallas will never return to their Super Bowl glory days as long as Jones remains owner – not unless he finally realizes, like George Steinbrenner did with Joe Torre, that you have to hire the right man for the job, and then allow him to do that job, which is what Jones allowed Johnson to do for a few years. Then, apparently, Jones felt he was the real reason why Dallas was so successful, and started interfering much too often. Until Jones realizes that he is a know-nothing, who needs to hire a real general manager, it will be one disappointing season after another for Dallas fans – with this season being the worst of them all.              

To Wade Phillips, we thank him for what he tried to accomplish with Dallas, and wish him the best of luck in the future. It’s a shame his stint in Dallas started so well and ended so badly.

The Saga of Jammie Thomas-Rasset (Screed #34)

November 4, 2010…

As we reported in previous screeds (#’s 11 and 14) from 2009, the RIAA has been going after individuals for illegal file sharing on the internet. Millions of people are guilty of this crime all across the globe, but for some reason the RIAA has seemingly targeted only a few chosen people to unleash their satanic wrath upon – usually hardworking, poor people, who have, in our eyes (and in the eyes of any sane, rational person), committed nothing more than a minor infraction. To purchase a song on Amazon, Napster, iTunes, or any of the other legitimate MP3 sites, it usually should cost you no more than 99 cents per song. Sometimes it might be as much as $1.29. Therefore, to purchase 24 songs, it should cost the average person somewhere between $23.76 and $30.96.  

The RIAA, due to their unbridled greed and desperate nature, have tried going after people for an amount that would average about $60,000-$80,000 per infraction. Yes, you read that correctly! They want to rape people for tens of thousands of dollars for simply “stealing” a song that would have cost them no more than $1.29, if they had purchased it legally. It’s mind-boggling and ridiculous, to say the least.

That brings us to the unending trial(s) of Jammie Thomas-Rasset, who was charged with illegally sharing 24 songs on her computer. Her first trial, in 2007, reached a verdict of $222,000 for her crimes. It was tossed out of court due to faulty jury instructions. Then, in her second trial, the jury decided to charge her with $1.92 million! District Court Judge Michael J. Davis threw that amount out, feeling it was “monstrous,” and lowered the amount she would have to pay to a total of $54,000 (which is still too much, if you ask us). Ms. Thomas-Rasset, as well as the RIAA, both rejected that amount. Now, she’s just had a third trial for this taxpayer-wasting nonsense, and the jury, once again, has penalized her $1.5 million. The judge simply shook his head and walked out of court disgustedly.

We find it absolutely incredible that these juries keep falling for this garbage. The RIAA has obviously brainwashed people into thinking that this is an extremely serious crime, for which people should have their lives ruined over. “Either pay one dollar for these songs or we will come after you for a sum of between $60 and 70 thousand – for each song!         

Yes, we realize that by “stealing” music, you are taking money that should belong to the artist and recording industry, but, first off, will the artists ever see any of this money, and secondly, how is the amount that the RIAA is dreaming up, and ignorant juries are blindly going along with, based in any kind of reality or justice?  .     

As we have stated before, the RIAA is entering its death throes, and is merely rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic. They are getting more and more desperate to hold onto their shrinking profits any way they can. Thankfully, Jammie Thomas-Rasset and a few others are brave enough to keep fighting back against Goliath. The Federation validates this mother of four, who refuses to give up, and is praying she is victorious in her plight. If she loses, it will ultimately set a dangerous legal precedent that the RIAA can use to start bullying anyone they choose, at whatever amount they feel is “appropriate.” We must not let that happen.