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  1. Old Comment
    Mardigras9's Avatar

    Saints' Kobayashi Maru: Drew Brees Contract

    This year there will be a reckoning and these conversations will not exist.
    Posted 03-05-2013 at 02:22 PM by Mardigras9 Mardigras9 is offline
  2. Old Comment
    xan's Avatar

    Saints' Kobayashi Maru: Drew Brees Contract

    Let's just say that last season should be thrown out due to it's unusual circumstance. It may have happened, but it's not likely to be an issue going forward.

    The circumstances on the ground today is that the offense has a lot of highly paid players, and that relative to performance, they may not really deserve that level of pay. The same can be said of the defense, probably more than the offense. The issue is that, contractually, the team has so little wiggle room it will be near impossible to make the necessary personnel moves to realize the new strategy over the next 2-3 years.

    As fans, we want to field the best team possible. For players, they want to make the most money they can over their limited playing careers. Those two goals only meet when the team has leverage over the salaries. Once the ability of the team to leverage the cap is gone, so too is the likelihood of success.

    Teams who are perennial winners never give up leverage in salaries.
    Posted 03-05-2013 at 07:01 AM by xan xan is offline
  3. Old Comment
    TheOak's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 1-19-2013 Positive Rights

    Xan - if you wish to look at the economic costs associated with guns, dont just focus on where the guns are. Try looking where they are not, at the costs associated with low gun ownership in the UK but having somewhere near a 5x-10x crime rate.
    Posted 03-04-2013 at 03:12 PM by TheOak TheOak is offline
  4. Old Comment
    TheOak's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 1-19-2013 Positive Rights

    Which is why the Bill of Rights should only be amended with positive rights.
    Posted 03-04-2013 at 03:08 PM by TheOak TheOak is offline
  5. Old Comment

    Saints' Kobayashi Maru: Drew Brees Contract

    No one forgot about the defense. But how do you buy a defense with no salary cap room? You can blame whoever you want for the losses, but the Saints made a decision of what was more important, and you can't blame them for wanting to keep their franchise QB. The amount of money it took to keep him is going to put the onus on the coaches to find a way to do more with less, on defense. If we can at least get one impact player on D this off season, be it through the draft or otherwise, that would help.
    Posted 03-03-2013 at 11:09 PM by burningmetal burningmetal is offline
  6. Old Comment
    saintsfan403's Avatar

    Saints' Kobayashi Maru: Drew Brees Contract

    He did throw a lot of picks, but he still threw the most td's last season. But the offense just couldn't make up for how piss poor the defense was, why has everyone forgotten that? Or has all this bull **** about salary caps turned everyone into a stammering idiot?
    Posted 03-03-2013 at 05:52 PM by saintsfan403 saintsfan403 is offline
  7. Old Comment
    saintsfan403's Avatar

    Saints' Kobayashi Maru: Drew Brees Contract

    Stop ****ing blaming brees, we have an overpaid ****ty defense. That's why we lost 7 games last year.
    Posted 03-03-2013 at 05:48 PM by saintsfan403 saintsfan403 is offline
  8. Old Comment

    Saints' Kobayashi Maru: Drew Brees Contract

    Just kills me that they invested all that money into the offense, thinking it would be okay. We saw how that worked out last season.
    Posted 03-03-2013 at 05:05 PM by gvicknair gvicknair is offline
  9. Old Comment

    Sanity Zone 2-6-2013 I Want a New Drug

    Yet again, you refuse to answer a question. I'm not even arguing with you, necessarily. I'm asking what your view is. Should they remain banned? Yes or no will do.

    Again, PED's HAVE been studied for years. Is there more to learn about them? Sure, I would think so. But everyone knows the main risks of these drugs, and there is a reason you have to have a prescription. In the case of athletes, it is seen as an unfair advantage. Whether or not you believe it gives an athlete any advantage, I think in the case of rehabilitating, it should be allowed. If you are being supervised, where your doses are being charted, then you can regulate how much an athlete is using. You're not going to gain an advantage unless you use constantly. That is where the line should be drawn between use, and abuse.

    Doctors would not prescribe these drugs to patients without first testing them for effectiveness. I think you are making a grand assumption by suggesting we don't know enough about these drugs. I think we know plenty. But it has been deemed immoral for athletes to EVER use these drugs. Why, I don't know. That is the issue. And that should be the conversation.

    Not more testing.
    Posted 02-15-2013 at 10:09 AM by burningmetal burningmetal is offline
  10. Old Comment
    xan's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 2-6-2013 I Want a New Drug

    To begin, I don't believe any discussion about the role of drugs in regenerative health should be limited to steroids. There are many other classes of immunoregulators that are banned or severely restricted that don't operated on the same pathways. The ultimate issue is the ethics of investigation. How do we study a therapy in isolation without being able to verify its efficacy in the context in which it will be used. One can't tell if a drug improves health but doesn't improve performance without allowing the competitor to engage in the activity that causes the injury. I think that there are a lot of myths about any drug's potential because there is simply no peer reviewed active controlled data to support or refute any claim. What we wind up getting is an underground of misuse and misrepresentation that puts the athlete at risk and derails advancement of potentially viable therapies.

    If we can move beyond the parochialness of willful ignorance, there may be ways to advance the science without compromising the integrity of fair sportsmanship. Until we actually study it and remove the stigmas, we can rely on the same frustrating cycle of masking and evading and "cheating" because the economic incentives are too great to not.
    Posted 02-15-2013 at 07:43 AM by xan xan is offline
  11. Old Comment

    Sanity Zone 2-6-2013 I Want a New Drug

    Well what is your opinion on the use of steroids, as of now, without studying it? Do you think it's good or bad? Or do you believe it can be good if used in proper increments?

    As I said above, I think it's fine to use steroids to recover from injury. I think it should be legal for that use only. The fact that it's totally banned from sports seems rather self righteous of these sports entities. There are negative side effects, and that as already been established. I don't think more research is really necessary to determine whether or not steroids should be legalized.

    If regular citizens can use it, so should athletes. If you take steroids after your rehabilitation is completed, then you deserve to be punished. Aside from advantages, it's just plain not smart, health wise, to use these drugs over an extended period of time.
    Posted 02-14-2013 at 10:33 AM by burningmetal burningmetal is offline
  12. Old Comment
    xan's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 2-6-2013 I Want a New Drug

    For most players, repetitive task injuries and sudden impact trauma injuries are the primary reason for taking steroids. Faster recovery means performing at a higher level longer. Strength training simultaneously builds muscle while tearing it down, which requires a recovery period. The longer the recovery period, the less benefit one gets from the training. The steroids, especially for older players, for whom deterioration of their immune systems has accellerated thereby lengthening the recovery period, minimize the effects of injury so that muscle mass can be retained and/or built.

    The average Joe/Jane experiences the same issues as the professional athlete, but the urgency to address the issues don't arise until later in life, sometimes when it is too late to manage. Dedicating a rational clinical methodology to studying the syndromes rather than "criminalize" them may benefit everyone in the long run and reduce the potential for negative consequences for the professional athlete in the short run.
    Posted 02-14-2013 at 08:52 AM by xan xan is offline
  13. Old Comment
    saintfan's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 1-19-2013 Positive Rights

    I didn't read the whole thread. I can tell from the first post you're leading up to a requirement that those who own guns purchase some sort of liability insurance.

    Well, who's going to buy insurance for all the illegal guns - you know, the ones used in most crime? You idea just added yet another financial burden to "we the people".

    You got anything else? Because this idea is bunk...
    Posted 02-13-2013 at 05:43 PM by saintfan saintfan is offline
  14. Old Comment
    saintfan's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 2-6-2013 I Want a New Drug

    So, is this about recovery or is this about an advantage on the field? If recovery then I think, as you suggest, it's a no-brainer.

    But, if it's about an on-the-field-advantage (think Barry Bonds) then it's different.

    Then again, I'm less bothered by Barry's roiding than I am by his wearing of armor at the plate because he's chicken ****. Personally I would have thrown at his head at least once an at-bat to remind him how owns the inner half.
    Posted 02-13-2013 at 05:30 PM by saintfan saintfan is offline
  15. Old Comment

    Sanity Zone 1-19-2013 Positive Rights

    I'm not speaking about morality of guns, specifically. I have touched on that some, as it pertains to the overall argument used by anti-gun people. As far as your point, you are telling me one minute that you're concerned about social cost, and then it switches to economic loss.

    Circular reasoning will get this discussion nowhere.

    I stated that we cannot accurately measure social cost of guns anymore than we can measure the effects of the internet. There are pro's and cons, and my point is that if we're going to shift the greater burden on the gun owners (which they already do bear the greatest burden, considering they are paying for their guns), then we better go down the line with everything else.

    Like it or not, morality is part of this equation. So please don't repeat to me that you don't care about morality. I get that you don't. The fact of the matter is that while you might be able to look at some numbers that show negative effect, you are ignoring the positive effects. There are not enough police to protect and serve the ENTIRE public at all times. Taking away that security from the those who would like to be able to protect themselves could lead to an enormous spike in crime, should guns be banned. That would certainly be in the category of social cost.

    With this in mind, I think it is absurd to suggest that people who only want to protect themselves, should bear the brunt of the burden when a disaster happens. That is effectively linking all gun owners together as murderers.

    Case in point: I did not ask Barack Obama to give a 750 billion dollar bailout to a failing car company, and I don't know anyone personally who thinks that was a good idea. And yet, we are all bearing that burden, are we not? That's the way the economy works, we all bear the burden for everything, with the top 2 or 3 percent obviously paying more than everyone else.

    So why, then, should JUST gun owners be responsible for bearing the burden of others mistakes? No person who is not personally involved in a shooting is directly paying the price, but yes, there are overall economic impacts. I have not, and would not deny that. But anytime something happens, be it a shooting, a flood, an increase in car accidents, there is always economic backlash. Insurance rates go up, there are more laws added for safety and you have to pay for various courses, etc. The theme with all these instances is that they effect everyone in some way, and we all know that.

    The problem I have is the implication that gun owners are somehow different. Why should they be singled out for something that for something that they didn't cause? Why should the burden not be balanced out? On the surface, it seems wrong that we should ever have to pay for anything that doesn't directly involve us, but it unfortunately has to, otherwise there would be widespread poverty.

    Theoretically, You could force gun owners to pay insurance, but that would penalize far too many people who don't deserve it. More people own cars than those who own guns. The vast majority of those who own guns are well versed in the laws and keep their guns hidden and often unloaded. There is a reason you are not allowed to carry a concealed weapon. It's not something you just tote around. Whereas with cars, every time we get in our vehicles we have a possibility of causing a massive amount of damage and/or death. Regardless of our intentions. That is why insurance is necessary for car owners.

    If you try to quantify the risk of owning a gun to that of car owners by simply looking at the numbers of deaths, then you would have to pay even higher insurance rates than you do for vehicles, simply because there are less gun owners to bear the burden. Hundreds of dollars for a little piece of metal?

    Here is the point I would most like for you to take from this: Guns do not bear near the risk of vehicles. It is the person owning it who can make it dangerous. They don't fire themselves sitting on a shelf or in a case, and accidents are far more rare. One does not randomly fire, and HIT an innocent bystander on accident very often. Almost never. Cars are an immediate risk every single time they are used. There are countless ways of being distracted and accidentally hitting someone.

    This is why I believe it is ridiculous to suggest insurance on guns. And without insurance, there is no way to shift the burden. We don't have to agree with everything in this country, and we certainly don't, but we either share our economic burden (without socialistic tax hikes on the wealthy, bringing down the job market), or we can watch ourselves implode.

    I get your point, and I can see that you are apparently of the belief that if you don't purchase something, you shouldn't bear any consequences from it. I am simply saying that we have always had to bear the burdens of things that we maybe didn't condone, or simply had no personal stake in. To change that now, would cause consequences that I'm not sure anyone is ready for.
    Posted 02-08-2013 at 09:25 AM by burningmetal burningmetal is offline
  16. Old Comment

    Sanity Zone 2-6-2013 I Want a New Drug

    In my opinion, there should be limits to the use of steroids, but not all out bans. Because I agree that steroids have been proven quite useful in speeding up recovery, as well as aiding in a more complete recovery. But they have also been proven to have negative effects when used for the wrong reasons over the long term.

    Drugs should not be used to build muscle, period. Don't care if you're an athlete or not. It can degenerate cartilage, cause heart problems, massive mood swings and much, much more. Using anabolic steroids strictly for growing muscle means prolonged use, and potentially major consequences.

    In sports, you see people suspended for ABUSING drugs, and then you have those who use them for health reasons, and they are treated exactly the same. I see no reason why all sports can't simply ban recreational use, and allow medical use. This can be done by allowing athletes to request permission to use for medical treatment, have the athletes present signed medical documents to their respective league offices, showing proof of use, time frame of each usage, along with the athlete's signed consent and knowledge to whatever treatment he or she received.

    With all athletes having these same rights and guidelines, there would be no competitive advantage, no excuse in court of saying "I was trying to rehab from surgery, and didn't know I was receiving a banned subtance", no confusion as to the reason of use from a fan's perspective, and they would have the opportunity to heal in the same way that any average citizen does without the worry of being penalized.

    All abuse of drugs (any usage without the previously mentioned documents of consent and legality) would continue to carry the appropriate penalties, without so many of the long and unnecessary legal battles. Because players often use the "logic" that they were unaware of what they were taking. In truth, anything that can help you heal faster should not be banned, but it is, and athletes should always be aware of what is or is not legal. Giving medical rights, and taking away excuses from those who abuse drugs should really speed up the legal process, and (maybe) deter them from future violations. It would at least draw a line between the cheaters and those who honestly aren't looking for an advantage.

    I have no sympathy for people like Lance Armstrong, Barry Bonds, and Roger Clemens. They used steroids for advantage, and knew it was illegal. Armstrong may have needed some help getting into shape after cancer, but we now know that he used well beyond his rehab.

    As for players who took steroids before they were banned; I think they showed a lack of character, but they are not technically cheaters. For this reason I think it's stupid that you have sportswriters standing on their high horse 25 years later, talking about morality of players, when they had good reason to believe this was going on back then and yet said nothing about it. The hypocrisy bugs me.
    Posted 02-07-2013 at 05:38 AM by burningmetal burningmetal is offline
  17. Old Comment
    xan's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 1-19-2013 Positive Rights

    To those who don't understand externalities, we'll start with something simple. Coal powered electric power generating plants produce AC current distributed over power lines for private and public consumption. The plants burn coal for the heat to boil water, which moves through pipes turning turbine engines. Coal is mostly carbon, but contains various other elements and compounds, including mercury, sulfur and nitrogen. Coal is burned, producing carbon dioxide and water, but the other elements also burn, producing sulfur dioxide (acid rain), mercury oxides (known carcinogens), and also produce particulate discharge (soot). Acid rain kills crops ($), damages metal (cars, buildings, bridges, $). Mercury levels have a direct relationship to birth defects (no arms, brain underdevelopment, etc). Soot levels increase respiratory distress, causing increase in drug usage and hospitalization. These are classic examples of negative externalities, all of which are measured as a byproduct of producing electricity, and have costs associated with them. None are "theoretical." All of these costs are borne by the society at large, and are not paid for by the producer of the pollution nor is it paid for in the market price of the electricity consumed. It is borne entirely by the person affected or, in the case of public property, by the tax base. Many strategies have been implemented to shift the burden of the externality costs directly to either the consumer of power or to the producers (which ultimately gets passed on to the consumer of the power in the form of higher rates.) These include taxes, limits and unilateral mandatory prevention.

    So, now focus on guns. Let's take the example of the Aurora massacre to identify "negative externalities" of gun use. It is an extreme example, but, nonetheless captures the categories that policy makers use to frame appropriate legislation, as non-legal use of guns carry the same potential externalities regardless of scale. The assailant used a 12 gauge shotgun, an MP-15 semiautomatic with a 100 clip cartridge and a standard Glock 22 handgun. So any use outside of the target range of any of these is likely to have negative consequence, or externalities.

    70 people were shot, killing 10, and one woman's injuries led to a miscarriage. The following is a partial list of costs to society which were/are being incurred:
    • There is a loss of productivity of all of those injured or killed,
    • The healthcare system used resources to treat the injuries, including blood, devices, services and drugs, not to mention the psychological services for PTSD of the victims,
    • The judicial/penal system uses resources to prosecute, including incarceration at an average in CO of $32,000 per year,
    • There was a loss in the Aurora tax base due to the deaths, as well as departures of some families in the aftermath,
    • The movie theatre was closed for 6 months, which also caused a decrease in patronage of the stores in the mall. (there was significant damage to the theatre)

    The Harvard School of Public Health has studied gun ownership as a function of public health, much like they study any cause of mortality/morbidity. Their site captures the analysis of decades of data. They also include statistics on what I call "defensive morbidity" or the use of gun weapons in instances of self defense which cause harm (also known as defensive gun use or "DGU"). Annually, there are about 200 instances of such in the US, resulting in 69 deaths in 2011 (latest figures). It should be noted that the NRA has blocked the CDC from doing a more extensive study in coordination with state and local authorities, as many questions about gun use persist.

    Finally, I am not interested in the morality of gun ownership. I am only interested in characterizing the economic cost of gun ownership beyond the direct private cost and how one might shift the costs so that as much of the burden of the costs are borne by the direct consumer. Any other non-gun factor (e.g., drones, nukes, knives) has no bearing on the analysis. Policies directly related to the costs shifting cause behavioral changes, some anticipated, some not, and can alter the effectiveness of certain policy initiatives.
    Posted 01-23-2013 at 05:59 PM by xan xan is offline
  18. Old Comment

    Sanity Zone 1-19-2013 Positive Rights

    In other words you don't want to answer any of my questions? That is not a form of critical thought. I use facts and common sense, not an internet list of ideas, for my own critical thinking.

    You evade nearly every question I ask with another question. I am specifically speaking to you, not anyone else. If you are offended by the directness of my replies, then perhaps debate is not for you. But I digress.

    Your social cost theory is exactly that, a theory. It goes back to the "negative externality" argument. You can not rationally make a distinction between the negative affects of a gun, without being able to prove what a person would do without one. I'll go back to the car reference. Cars are very positive in that they get us where we need to go, and they are much more convenient than traveling by horse or foot. But there are so many cars on the road that a lot of bad accidents happen. That is certainly a negative. I'm not lobbying to get rid of cars. It's simply an illustration. But if we are to make economic arguments based on things outside of upfront money, then we better go down the list of things that have negative social impact.

    I don't hear any arguments that we should get rid of prescription drugs, which people use to commit suicide by overdose at times, or people become so dependent on them that they can not function rationally without them. Or the internet which is used in negative ways, such as stalking, bullying and generally dumbing down society with all the false information and rumors circulating. There are those who use it for positive things however. So how do we determine how much positive vs. negative impact any of these things have? It's hearsay.

    You're asking me how we manage these "social costs" and who should bear the burden. How in the world do I answer that question when there is no direct evidence of the overall impact on society, as opposed to those who are personally affected by either owning a gun or being a victim of tragedy. I don't argue in theory.
    Posted 01-21-2013 at 10:40 PM by burningmetal burningmetal is offline
  19. Old Comment
    xan's Avatar

    Sanity Zone 1-19-2013 Positive Rights

    For easy reference:

    A List Of Fallacious Arguments

    Critical Thinking vs Specious Arguments

    I find these concepts useful when I construct my critical thinking. Bad thinking = bad results.

    Nothing personal to anyone engaged in this discussion, either active or passive.

    To go back to the original thesis, PRIVATE gun ownership and use that is not for hunting or recreational target practice carries a social cost beyond the private costs of acquisition. How do we manage those costs and who should bear the burden of those costs?
    Posted 01-21-2013 at 01:47 PM by xan xan is offline
  20. Old Comment

    Sanity Zone 1-19-2013 Positive Rights

    I gave you the reason for no gun insurance already. Insurance is meant to cover for damage/losses/medical. It's not a means to make up for any economic loss for the price of manufacturing anything. Where do you get the idea that's what insurance is for? The true cost of misusing a gun, is prison. That's as strong a deterrent as you can get.

    Also, I am not near dumb enough to believe your blog isn't intended to further demonize gun owners. You are trying a different angle, and it is not adding up.

    Your numbers on murders and suicides fell far short of the number of car accidents and deaths. And also, the suicide stat is meaningless. When someone is prepared to take their own life, they will do it. It would be just a easy to overdose. Would you like to talk about the negative externalities of prescription drugs? Should we not have medication because someone might commit suicide? I well stated in my previous reply that it doesn't matter what people use. They'll use what is available to them. What is the productive value of a bow and arrow? Nothing. But if there were no guns it would be used as a primary weapon. Once again, people like to hunt and also like to be protected. That sounds pretty valuable to me.

    You continue to ignore the numerous positives that come from guns. Your argument is that they are either unproductive or used to destroy or kill. But what about cops who use them to defend citizens? What about soldiers who use weapons to defend our country, or people who just want to have some peace of mind? If people are buying guns, then profit is being made. What makes you think those who don't want guns are somehow being burdened by this?

    Tell me, how can guns not provide wealth, when people buy them? Does it make you angry every time someone makes a purchase if it does not put money in your pocket? Comic books don't bring wealth to the general public, but they make money for those selling them. Isn't that the point of business? Nothing continues to pump money into the economy after it is already paid for, with the exception of service charges on our phones, and paying utilities. The main source of money for the economy is our income tax dollars. When you purchase a gun, you do pay a sales tax. Do you think we should be taxed monthly for something we've already paid for?

    The only things that hurt our economy are: 1) Businesses being so incredibly overtaxed that they can't retain enough employees to be productive, and eventually fail, causing even more jobs to be lost. 2) Those tax dollars are then used to subsidize businesses that have ALREADY PROVEN to be unproductive, and NOT used to bring down the debt. Or any form of wasteful spending by our government. If people buy guns , who cares if they ever use them? They PAID for it, didn't they?
    Posted 01-20-2013 at 06:40 PM by burningmetal burningmetal is offline

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