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Game 49: Habs/Red Wings

  • I love when the Habs play the Red Wings. Don’t get me wrong – the outcome is usually bad for the Canadiens, but there is something so amazing.. so formerly Montreal, about the Red Wings team. They are about as close as you can come to a “Dynasty” as you can get in modern hockey. They don’t win every year like the Habs used to, but they never draft high – and they’re always good. Their players get old, but they never slow down.  I simply can’t get enough of watching Zetterberg, Datsyk, Lidstrom, Franzen, Kronwall, Filppula, Hudler, and Holmstrom (for those keeping score at home that’s seven Euros filled with ‘heart’ who I’d have on my team any day of the week). They are such a good team. They currently lead the Western Conference with 67 points and are once again early favorites to contend for the Stanley Cup. Even if you hate the Red Wings – you have to respect their consistent professionalism. They find value where other teams do not – and they get the most out of the players they have. Its that simple, but almost impossible to imitate as an organization.

    Ok enough Red Wing fondling from me.

    On to some Bruins hate.

    Tim Thomas is a huge idiot for not showing up for his team being honoured at the White House. I’m not talking about him being a bad teammate (which he was), or being a bad patriot (he certainly didn’t protest receiving his full scholarship from the publicly funded University of Vermont, or his Silver Medal at the past Winter Olympics).

    Tim Thomas is an idiot because he got up on a soapbox to make a stand and then didn’t say a damn thing when given the spotlight.

    I believe the Federal government has grown out of control, threatening the Rights, Liberties, and Property of the People. This is being done at the Executive, Legislative, and Judicial level. This is in direct opposition to the Constitution and the Founding Fathers vision for the Federal government. Because I believe this, today I exercised my right as a Free Citizen, and did not visit the White House. This was not about politics or party, as in my opinion both parties are responsible for the situation we are in as a country. This was about a choice I had to make as an INDIVIDUAL. This is the only public statement I will be making on this topic. TT

    I respect your right to have an opinion Tim Thomas. Even though I think your political views are ridiculous – you have every right to live your life as a deluded, evangelical who watches Glenn Beck and thinks to himself: “ya, you know what he’s right”. You have every right to go to on cheering those Tea Party fanatics who practice the politics of fear and division within the United States, following a model of faith and governance that more closely resembles post-Revolution theocratic Iran, than the free and diverse land your Founding Fathers reportedly sought to build.

    But for Christ’s sake Tim Thomas, don’t pretend to be taking a stand on an issue and then simply release one cryptic paragraph on Facebook about defending your rights, liberty and property from some vague Government infringement!

    What do you mean? What are the rights and liberties that you feel are being threatened? In what ways is the Government now out of control? In what ways has the Government become directly opposed to the Constitution or the vision of the Founding Fathers (those elite, super-rich, white, slave-owning Founding Fathers)?

    Tim Thomas – you are entitled to your beliefs and to the freedom of speech (although your Tea Party believes people who don’t agree with them should not be). The only real problem I have with your political stand is that you don’t even have a point. You sound like a high school kid who took his first Social Studies class. Things are wrong in the world – you just have no idea why. The fact that you’re getting your talking points from the likes of Glenn Beck and Bill O’Reiley make that abundantly clear.

  1. There is no place for politics in Sports. Thomas as an olympic athelete should not that better than most people. This visit to the white house nothing else but being recognized as the champion of the NHL. It is not a polical photo opp or anything other than a tradition that was started years ago by the then President of the United States to recognize the world series champion, and then carried forward to the other champions of the various major sports leagues. Shame on Thomas for making it anything other than that.

  2. As for Ovechin he also should be ashamed for his decision to not show at the all star break, this is nothing other than a sulk for being suspended and saying to the NHL if you are going to suspend me then I am not going to support the all star game. VERY UNPROFESSIONAL.

  3. #3 Avatar37 says:
    January 30, 2012 at 5:40 pm

    Naturally, I hold an opposite view to one expressed by both Mats and Senet, and I’ll try and explain why.

    Thomas took a stand on an issue he considers a moral one, knowing it wouldn’t be popular. I respect him for that. I live in the United States, so maybe I have a different perspective on what he’s talking about.

    He’s talking about a government that has become beholden to lobbyists and big business, one that institutes policy and law to favour corporate profits rather than a strong, stable country for the benefit of its citizens. One merely has to watch shows such as The Daily Show, Colbert Report, or if you want something presented in a more serious vein, Moyers and Company on public television, to discover the hypocracy of most of the people who work in government, and the level to which corporate money has corrupted the government as an institution. I’m talking about the President and Congress, of course, the elected representatives, not unelected civil servants.

    Perhaps you’ve heard of the occupy Wall Street movement? There is an upswell of protest in this country and more and more people become aware of the fact that their government no longer represents them, but represents the corporate interests that can afford the lobbyists and unlimited corporate campaign contributions which now no longer have to be disclosed. If you wish to learn more on your own, I’d suggest watching the Daily show for awhile, and also heading over to:

    http://billmoyers.com/

    I’m sure there are many other resources out there should you be so inclined to learn more about what Thomas is protesting, but to write it off simply as a Glenn Beck or Bill O’Reilly fantasy ignores the real issues.

    Oh, and Thomas’ point? That he wasn’t going to participate in an event with a corrupt institution unrelated to hockey in any way. He is protesting a government so corrupt that it lead to the Citizens United ruling. Or perhaps you are one of those who believe that corporations really are people and entitled to all the rights of an individual, and that money really is speach and to limit corporate campaign donations equates to infringing free speech, and that corporations should be allowed to spend millions of dollars lobbying the goverment to keep capital gains income tax at 15%, so that someone who earns $57,000 a day pays the same, or less than, income tax rate as someone who earns $55,000 a year (I’m referring to Mitt Romney’s recently released income tax statement for 2011). Or a government that allows a corporation like Wal-Mart to import directly from China goods manufactured at $0.30 an hour either without tariffs, or virtually non-existant ones, leading to a company that pays its workers so poorly they train them how to apply for foodstamps meanwhile the Waltons comprise 30% of the top 10 wealthiest people in America, with a combined net worth that exceeds Bill Gates.

    No, perhaps if you all were aware of how bad things really have gotten in the United States, you might not be so quick to judge Thomas’ choice. After all, our biggest corruption in Canada that I can remember was Shawinigate, and that was back in the early 90s, although admittedly living in the US has limited my exposure to what is going on back home. From what I hear, the Canadian economy is doing much better than the American one, so perhaps it’s hard to understand for people who aren’t living here.

    Personally, I applaud mr. Thomas for his choice and wish more people would stand up for what they believe in.

  4. To me there are ways to protest your argument without mixing the argument with sports, to me this is what we have been attempting to get rid of in the Olympics for years. Keeping politics out of sports is the only thing we have left that government does not screw up so No do not support Mr. Thomas in the way he protested. I believe in his political argument to a certain extent, and if ever there was a President who seems to get it Mr. Obama is at least attempting to reduce the corporate give aways and raise the taxes on the rich. If there is on president that Mr. Thomas should support because he is attempting to change things but keeps getting shut down by people like Romney and Neut and the rest of the Republicans. So although I support his political agenda not at the expense of the GAME and what the Stanley Cup stands for, team play and not politics, to me he should have been with his team. Sounds like most of the Major Radio and TV people think he made a mistake too.

  5. #5 Mats Naslund says:
    January 31, 2012 at 12:13 pm

    Avatar: I do not currently live in the US, but have lived there in the past. I’m fully aware of what Tim Thomas was “allegedly” talking about. I say “allegedly” because making a vague reference to “a government out of control” and not expanding on that point is NOT a statement.

    Like I said – Tim Thomas is entitled to his opinion. What I found absurd about the situation is that Thomas never expressed an opinion. He never once gave a real reason for why he was avoiding the game other than the infantile “I don’t like the government”.

    You’ve inserted your own assumptions of what Thomas was eluding to when he talked about “a government out of control.” His vague response allowed you to assume he might be talking about the Occupy movement – when in fact his personal politics are widely known to be those of the Tea Party Movement who see the “Occupiers” as enemies.

    I find it hilarious that you’ve filled in all of the wrong blanks within Thomas’ “protest”. He never once made any mention of any of that which you have brought up. If he had – I would have had no problem with him.

    In fact, what is more funny is that I completely agree with your sentiments of a government that has turned its back on people with regard to protecting the wealth of only the richest Americans while allowing the lower and middle classes to regress further than many ever though possible.

    No one in the Tea Party Movement has ever advocated for the raising of capital gains taxes. You will never hear Newt Gingrich advocate the redistribution of wealth from the upper 1% to those who desperately need help within America. Tim Thomas is receiving your applause for standing up for what he believes in – but at no time did he ever reveal what he believes in.

    He believes in Fox News, Newt Gingrich, Sarah Palin and Glenn Back. There is no connection between Tim Thomas and the kind of injustice that you spoke about (which again – I completely agree with you). His reputation as a “Birther” – those who do not believe that Obama is an American born President, as a global warming denier, as someone who openly opposes union labor, and someone who holds extreme libertarian views – betray all of the supposed virtuous moral beliefs you have described above.

  6. #6 Avatar37 says:
    January 31, 2012 at 2:19 pm

    Senet – In what way has Obama attempted to reduce corporate influence and government benefits towards them? Bank profits have nearly doubled under his adminstration, GE, the largest company in the world, not only paid $0 in taxes but received BILLIONS in government subsidies, Obama has been great at telling us all about the need for change and how he stands against corporate entitlement while he continues the feeding frenzy at the trough.

    Don’t kid yourself, there is nothing more than cosmetic differences between the Democrats and Republicans, between Bush and Obama and Romney. This is what Thomas was protesting, this is what Occupy Wallstreet is protesting, and this is what most Americans, indeed the world, are fed up with. They’re very good at pretending to understand and sympathize with public concerns, while keeping the status quo and forwarding a corporate profit agenda behind the scenes.

    Keep in mind, this isn’t an NHL fundraiser for sick kids that Thomas elected to not attend. This was a White House invitational, and he should have every right in a free society to decline for moral reasons, and given the current state of politics in the US, I fully agree and support his choice.

    Do you know the origins of the word politics? It comes from the merging of two words, poly meaning many, and ticks, which are blood sucking parasites. =)

  7. #7 Avatar37 says:
    January 31, 2012 at 3:55 pm

    Mats – Perhaps Tomas didn’t expand on the statement because, with all the current attention in the media to the issue, he didn’t feel it required further expanding upon by him. There certainly are enough resources out there and people beating the drum if there are still people unaware of what is going on in Washington currently. Maybe Thomas isn’t that well spoken and thought his statement was enough, I certainly thought it was.

    Given the fact that Tim Thomas is the only American born player on the roster, I think it’s well within his rights to refuse to visit the White House.

    http://vigilantcitizen.com/latestnews/nhl-champ-tim-thomas-declines-white-house-invitation-due-to-out-of-control-government/

    Obama, just before New Year’s eve, signed into law a bill that would allow for the detention of US citizens indefinitely without trial, called the National Defense Authorization Act. This is a violation of the US constitution.

    I also think Tim Thomas’ statment was clear. He didn’t specify exactly why he thought the government is out of control, and in what ways the are threatening the liberties of all American citizens, because such an explanation could take pages of argument. I assume he didn’t want to turn his choice into a debate, he was merely explaning WHY he chose his actions.

    I think that if you agree that this is really going on, then saying you condemn Thomas for not being specific enough in his statement about it is picking too fine of a point.

    You’re right, I’ve inserted my own assumptions behind the why of it, but the why is almost irrelevant. Thomas has an opinion of the government which I agree with, perhaps for the same reasons or perhaps for different ones, but in a free country, he has the right to choose what he does on his own time. Aren’t you inserting your own assumptions about his support of the Tea Party and their agenda? After all, he was non-specific, so my assumptions could be just as valid. But really, does it matter? I think we all agree something is rotten in the state of Denmark, so to speak. He’s receiving my applause for standing up for what he believes in, regardless of how unpopular that would be, instead of being a hyporcrite by choosing the popular path rather than the one he believes in. I’m not sure about his belief in non-union, he grew up in a poor family where his dad was an auto maker. If you have any references that support what you’re saying about Thomas’ beliefs I’d love to read them.

    It’s not like Thomas refused to play in the Stanley Cup final because the president would be in attendance. He refused to participate in attending the White House in recognition of already having won the cup, and I believe he has that right. If he believes what he does and had gone anyway, it would make him as much of a hypocrite as those he’s protesting.

    For the record, I agree with you about Fox news (it’s not so much news as propaganda). I hate Fox as a network (how could anyone like a network that cancelled Firefly?). Sarah Palin is an idiot, as are the rest on your list. They’re all part of the system of what is wrong with this country. In fact, the only politician I can tell who might have any honesty at all is Ron Paul, and that’s just scary, but I’d still pick him over any of the bunch. At least with Ron Paul, I know what face I’m being talked to by, because he only has one. But I digress, this was about Thomas and his choice, and I agree with what he did because at least it doesn’t make him a hypocrite, which going would have, regardless of the why behind his choice.

  8. #8 Mats Naslund says:
    February 2, 2012 at 5:56 pm

    The thing is – all those that you said were ruining the country are those that Thomas has openly supported in the past.. so which is it – is Thomas standing up against people who are ruining the country or for them? Thomas never gave his reasons – so you don’t know. He didn’t stand up for anything at all. If I tell you that I’m holding a benefit dinner – wouldn’t you ask for what before you jump on board and give me your money?

    Same deal here. Thomas is entitled to not go – but he’s an idiot for pretending to stand up for his beliefs while completely shadowing what those are? He didn’t stand up for anything – because he gave none of his political beliefs any kind of promotion.

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