Friday, January 5, 2007

Link Du Jour, From England's Channel Four

Sometimes one cannot help but laugh. As Abe Lincoln would have said, it is "necessary and proper". Perhaps not, as a mathematician would phrase it, "necessary and sufficient", but surely we all need more laughter once in a while.

And that's why it pleases me to note that Newsroom blogger at England's Channel 4 has compiled a roundup of bloggers' reactions to the suddenly-finished 5-0 whitewash of England by Australia's test cricket side, concluding with these surprising remarks:
Finally, we all know sport and politics make uncomfortable bedfellows, but it still requires a big conceptual leap to use the Ashes to justify indicting both Tony Blair and John Howard as war criminals. Nevertheless, that's what Winter Patriot manages to do.

"England were last swept in an Ashes series during the summer of 1920-21. This is clear evidence that war criminal Tony Blair must go... Can you imagine being prime minister of a country that would humiliate a fellow war criminal like that? War criminal John Howard must go too!"
G'day, mate! Nah, it's not much of a leap at all. But thanks for the chuckle!

For those readers who don't happen to follow cricket: the basic units of offense and defense are runs and wickets, respectively. The batting side tries to score as many runs as possible while the fielding side tries to take their wickets.

In this series, Australia scored 3114 runs while losing 59 wickets, an average of 52.78 runs per wicket. England scored only 2530 runs while losing 96 wickets, for an average of 26.35 -- less than half the Australian rate.

But it may make more sense to look at it this way -- the runs and wickets are not only divisible but also cumulative: Australia won the series by 584 runs and 37 wickets.

Any way you slice it, it's a stunning defeat, comparable (in American terms) with the most lopsided World Series results ever. Think of the 1927 Yankees over Pittsburgh. Think of the term "epic slaughter". Think of the Charge of the Light Brigade.

You get the idea.

So ... what to do?

Sorry England start Ashes inquest
England cricket chiefs have launched a major review of the team's performances in Australia following their crushing 5-0 Ashes defeat.

England and Wales Cricket Board chief executive David Collier said the series was a "great disappointment" and "a number of lessons must be learned".

He promised that the review would be "comprehensive and broad ranging".
Well, of course. Who would expect anything less?

If only ...

If only our British friends would take war and peace as seriously as they take runs and wickets...

If only we considered electoral integrity as interesting as The Super Bowl...
Imagine all the people, living life in peace