Public Comment

Super(fluos) Bowl, Super(fluos) Tuesday

By Thomas L. Turman
Friday February 08, 2008

Super: Excellent, outstanding, great,  


Superfluos: Unnecessary, more than what is needed, redundant, inessential… 


OK, we have just been exposed to two superfluous super days within two days of one another. The Super Bowl was an enormously expensive waste of time, which solved nothing and proved nothing in a lasting way. Millions of people were guilted into pretending that the outcome of the game meant something while watching advertisements, which cost more that most cities’ annual budgets. Football players from all over the country, claiming some fealty to a couple of general areas of the country, are playing for two teams ostensibly from New England and New York, so that overweight men with painted, distorted faces could pay exorbitant amounts to sit in the stands like Neo-Romans with distorted faces shouting “Number One” pointing their fingers up instead of their thumbs down. These so-called fans wear jerseys of their favorite player, who wouldn’t give them the time of day if they were to meet on the street, and cheer on “their” team. These beer addled sycophants do this as if they had something to do with the false glory and fleeting success of these gross business playthings owned by a very few privileged white men. Remember, “Give them Circuses and Bread”? Wait until next year, all the other misled camp followers chant, as the circuses and bread are being prepared for next season. 

The other superfluous exhibition was Super Tuesday. This embarrassing display of wealth in place of intelligence brought us millions of dollars spent on each candidate’s profiling and hours of TV coverage tracking the meaningless statistics ending up with a virtual tie and no real decision. In keeping with the wasteful spending on the Stupid Bowl, each candidate is also spent more than many cities’ budgets to end up right where they were before Super Tuesday. All the grim-faced, pseudo-serious, talking heads couldn’t inject any excitement, interest or new information in the plodding, child-like wrangling which passes for Democratic or Republican campaigning. While schools are continuously under funded, Bush squanders billions on an undeclared, un-winnable war and all the sitting senator candidates ignore this glaring failure of government. Instead, the top three candidates trade pity-pat punches about their spouses, gender and race in hopes of winning the 50 percent of the consistently ignorant voter pool who do make the effort to be part of Super Tuesday. At the end of Tuesday night nothing was settled nationally except for the terminally head-in-ass Republicans and their McCain daisy chain. In California, a measure to finally fund community colleges as they should be was defeated, while three measures to allow more Indian gambling passed, providing revenue for four of the 120 tribes in California.  

At the end of these two super days, the American public has demonstrated our ignorance, fear of change and inability to comprehend the problems at hand. All of our politicians have failed us. They hoped that we wouldn’t notice because of the hype surrounding the circus of the Super Bowl. Bush’s solution to the awful economic conditions he has created is to borrow money and give it to the citizens in hopes that they won’t notice that this is a bad loan, which will have to be paid off by my generation’s children. This is also just another “circuses and bread” trick to divert attention from the wars in which this mental midget has involved us. It worked too, as the economy became the number one topic for the pundits to scream at us all last week. 

This is a nation, which proclaims that democracy should be pressed on the world, yet we are presenting a very weak example. We even ran out of ballots! Yes, we haven’t killed anyone at the polling places as in some countries, but this display of weak-willed representatives, myopic ignorant president and lazy, gullible voters is appalling. True, our system is still way ahead of what ever is in second place; see the political flavor of the week in Italy and the arcane British system. The last eight years has been so destructive to America’s status in the world that impeachment is too good for the barbaric criminals who are sill in the White House. The fact that anyone is voting for any Republican is dangerous, short sighted and insulting. 

By the way, there was a Super Bowl in each of the last 30-plus years; I’m sure that you feel the economic boost, the respect of worldwide sports enthusiasts and respect for producing such a meaningful pageant. The only advantage to come of this worthless sports event is that there were less traffic accidents due to the almost empty streets. 

My suggestion is to have both the Super Bowl and Super Tuesday on the same day and you only get to watch the game if you can prove that you have voted (voting booths at the stadium and cable black out for those who haven’t cast their ballots). This would mean millions more voters for those who think that Americans are lazy as voters (a 30 percent-40 percent turnout is considered good). Of course, tying the two events together will mean that we will have quarterbacks and running backs (ring leaders in the circus) for our government and be eating hot dogs (bread) for the rest of our lives. 


Thomas L Turman is a Berkeley resident.