Wardrobe Malfunction – Nike Fail

30 12 2009

Is that a cold front coming in?

So, I’m obviously thrilled with the Badgers winning their bowl game and getting their 10th win in what was thought to be a rebuilding year, but what has me smiling today really is the very funny images of Miami Hurricane players shivering on the sideline last night huddling by their portable heaters trying to stay warm in their fancy Nike “Pro Combat” uniforms (err, excuse me, “System of Dress”).

Indeed, around the second quarter, the TV broadcast showed a bunch of bewildered Miami players hunched around little mini-heaters on their sideline, while the Badgers were running around sleeveless and having a blast.  I knew then the game was going to go the Badgers’ way.

From Nike’s promo materials:

CORAL GABLES, Fla. — The University of Miami football team will wear the Nike Pro Combat uniform, a new system of dress and the lightest weight football uniform Nike has ever created, when it takes the field for the South Florida contest on Saturday, November 28.

Miami is one of 11 elite programs to debut the Nike Pro Combat uniform during the month of November before it is officially introduced at the start of the 2010 season. The Hurricanes are joined by Clemson, Florida, Florida State, LSU, Virginia Tech, Missouri, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Texas and TCU as the schools debuting the uniform this month.

* * *

Why yes, that is a cold front!

“Nike has been a premier partner of the University of Miami for many years,” commented Director of Athletics Kirby Hocutt. “The UM athletic department is honored to have been selected as one of the programs to debut the Pro Combat uniform.”

Nike designed the Pro Combat uniform to address the evolution of the game and the increase in strength and speed of the student-athletes. The uniform is 37 percent lighter than current designs (673 grams vs. 1,061 grams). Nike utilized a four-way stretch twill that does not hold sweat or water and, as a result, the new uniforms are 46 percent lighter than the current designs when wet. Overall, the Nike Pro Combat uniform is lighter when wet that the current Miami design when completely dry.
* * *
The Nike Pro Combat Deflex shorts are made with Nike Dri-FIT technical fabric to provide superior moisture wicking, helping to keep players dry and cool. With the padding incorporated into the base layer, players gain greater mobility over traditional padding and the outer uniform becomes a lightweight, breathable shell with a sleek, explosive look.

“Players need their uniforms to be as light as possible so they can play the game at top speed,” said Kris Aman, Global VP and General Manager for Nike Athletic Training which includes football. “The Nike Pro Combat uniform is a modern system of dress that is dramatically lighter while providing durability and protection.”

‘Course, when you put these ultra light and cool uniforms on a bunch of kids used to Miami weather and they run up against a big, burly Badger team coming down from the “Frozen Tundra” reveling in the relative balmy-ness of last night’s 40 degree weather in Orlando – maybe the old style heavy and warm uniforms would do?


Illinois GOP Bringing Sexy Back?

29 12 2009

First, a history lesson:  When Obama was first elected to his Senate seat, he pretty much walked into the seat when the campaign of Jack Ryan was scuttled by the Illinois Republican Party going all nuts over stories coming up about Ryan’s particular sexual proclivities.  The stories were pretty racy, but I’ve always thought that they could have been weathered – he was a good candidate for the Republicans and was leading in the polls.

In any event, Judy Baar Topinka got all aghast that there was anything other than “normal” sex going on and drove Ryan out of the primary.  End result: The Repubs came forward with Alan Keyes as their candidate.  He immediately went from Carpet-bagger to crazy rightwing Teabagger – before Teabagging was Sarah Palin approved – and Obama walked in a laugher.

So, today’s news in Illinois is Republican gadfly, nut job, repeat candidate and litigant Andy Martin coming out (pun intentional) in his radio ads calling current Republican polling leader Mark Kirk gay.  Pretty lowly to put someone’s sex into play at any time (seriously, who gives a damn), but especially a cheap shot when Kirk’s currently serving his Naval Reserve stint.

But one paragraph stood out to me:

Illinois Republican Party Chairman Patrick Brady blasted Martin and the ad, saying, “The Illinois Republican Party disavows the statements made today by Mr. Andrew Martin in his statewide radio advertisements. His statements today are consistent with his history of bizarre behavior and often times hate-filled speech which has no place in the Illinois Republican Party. Mr. Martin will no longer be recognized as a legitimate Republican candidate by the Illinois Republican Party.”

via GOP opponent claims front-runner Mark Kirk is gay in attack ad :: CHICAGO SUN-TIMES :: Metro & Tri-State.

I don’t know what the fallout will be of this story – it shouldn’t even be a blip on the radar.  That said, with the Republicans, even being linked with anything stepping past the Missionary position is going to hurt Kirk’s chances in the primary.  Still, it seems to me that Chairman Brady, by mentioning “bizarre behavior and often times hate-filled speech“, just elevated Andy Martin to a national-level Republican candidate.  At least it seems he fits the mold.

Oh, and if you’re wondering, yes, this is the same Andy Martin that was found to be the source of the completely refuted – but still continuing – rumors that Obama was Muslim and was not Barack Obama, Sr.’s kid.  In fact, he’s still beating these drums (and I sure don’t recall Brady – or any other major Illinois Republican calling out Martin when he was spreading these lies – shocking as that may be!)

So, in a way, he’s already a national fixture of the Frightwing.  Welcome to the big game Andy Martin!

GOP Budget Hypocrisy Finally Noticed?

28 12 2009

Nice to see some of the press finally addressing the clear hypocrisy of the GOP in its unified opposition to the pending healthcare reform efforts.

WASHINGTON — Democrats are troubled by the inconsistency of Republican lawmakers who approved a major Medicare expansion six years ago that has added tens of billions of dollars to federal deficits, but oppose current health overhaul plans.

All current GOP senators, including the 24 who voted for the 2003 Medicare expansion, oppose the health care bill that’s backed by President Barack Obama and most congressional Democrats.

The Democrats claim that their plan moving through Congress now will pay for itself with higher taxes and spending cuts and they cite the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office for support.

By contrast, when Republicans controlled the House, Senate and White House in 2003, they overcame Democratic opposition to add a deficit-financed prescription drug benefit to Medicare. The program will cost a half-trillion dollars over 10 years, or more by some estimates.

* * *

Some conservatives have no patience with such explanations.

“As far as I am concerned, any Republican who voted for the Medicare drug benefit has no right to criticize anything the Democrats have done in terms of adding to the national debt,” said Bruce Bartlett, an official in the administrations of Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush. He made his comments in a Forbes article titled “Republican Deficit Hypocrisy.”

Bartlett said the 2003 Medicare expansion was “a pure giveaway” that cost more than this year’s Senate or House health bills will cost. More important, he said, “the drug benefit had no dedicated financing, no offsets and no revenue-raisers. One hundred percent of the cost simply added to the federal budget deficit.”

The pending health care bills in Congress, he noted, are projected to add nothing to the deficit over 10 years.

GOP lawmakers change tune on costly health plans | General News | Comcast.net.

Crooks and Liars has a very detailed analysis, worthy of a link (below).  The end quote aptly sums up the recent wave of articles calling out the GOP on their blatant hypocrisy:

“The health-care reform bills currently under consideration in both the Senate and the House actually cut money from the deficit, but they are being criticized as fiscally irresponsible by many of the people who voted for Medicare Part D. It’s like watching arsonists calling the fire department reckless.”


Can we finally put to rest the idea that the Republican Party is the party of fiscal responsibility?  Please ?

Golf and Terrorism

28 12 2009

Astute analysis today of the calm “non-response” to the latest failed terrorism in The Atlantic today:

There is a reason why Obama hasn’t given a public statement. It’s strategy.

Here’s the theory: a two-bit mook is sent by Al Qaeda to do a dastardly deed. He winds up neutering himself. Literally.
Authorities respond appropriately; the president (as this president is wont to to) presides over the federal response. His senior aides speak for him, letting reporters know that he’s videoconferencing regularly, that he’s ordering a review of terrorist watch lists, that he’s discoursing with his secretary of Homeland Security.

But an in-person Obama statement isn’t needed; Indeed, a message expressing command, control, outrage and anger might elevate the importance of the deed, would generate panic (because Obama usually DOESN’T talk about the specifics of cases like this, and so him deciding to do so would cue the American people to respond in a way that exacerbates the situation).


Now imagine the fear-mongering that would be going on if McCain/Palin were in charge.  We’d be on Def-Con Hot Lavender.

But it gets better folks!  The same Repubs that are aghast at Obama’s calm, are the ones with dirt on their hands for not providing TSA funding to enhanced screening!

Republicans have cast votes against the key TSA funding measure, the 2010 appropriation bill for the Department of Homeland Security contained, which included funding for the TSA, including for explosives detection systems and other aviation security measures. In the June 24 vote in the House, leading Republicans including John Boehner, Pete Hoekstra, Mike Pence and Paul Ryan voted against the bill, amid a procedural dispute over the appropriations process, a Democrat points out. A full 108 Republicans voted against the conference version, including Boehner, Boehner, Hoekstra, Pence, Michelle Bachmann, Marsha Blackburn, Darrell Issa, and Joe Wilson.

The conference bill included more than $4 billion for “screening operations,” including $1.1 billion in funding for explosives detection systems, including $778 million for buying and installing the systems.


Kos ends his blog post on this asking why “the Party of No hates America?”  I think this is an overstatement.  More apt is to ask why “the Party of No makes it so darn easy?”

Max Baucus – Driven to Drink?

28 12 2009

Yeah, I suppose if I had sold my soul to the healthcare insurance industry and subverted efforts to really pass meaningful healthcare reform in my country, I might want to drown my guilt.  Or maybe all the tension caused a mini-stroke?

I dunno, but he really seems out of it in this video:

Michele Bachmann: Welfare Queen

23 12 2009

Reading this today was like Christmas coming early for me.  Once again the hypocrisy of the Frightwing shines!

Michele Bachmann has become well known for her anti-government tea-bagger antics, protesting health care reform and every other government “handout” as socialism. What her followers probably don’t know is that Rep. Bachmann is, to use that anti-government slur, something of a welfare queen. That’s right, the anti-government insurrectionist has taken more than a quarter-million dollars in government handouts thanks to corrupt farming subsidies she has been collecting for at least a decade.

via Michele Bachmann: Welfare Queen – Truthdig.

Want To Feel Small And Insignificant?

19 12 2009

This will probably do it…