Thursday, October 25, 2012

The NHL Lockout is not... Logical

This lockout thing has us doing things we shouldn’t do.  I mean, here we are at “the deadline” to save the season, and there looks to be the makings of a deal on the table.  But no one who needs to be talking is talking, no one is talking about talking, and the only ones talking are reporters talking about no one talking.

It makes no sense.  It is utterly illogical.  And it drives us to our guilty pleasure, that pepperoni, anchovy, and marshmallow fluff pizza.  I can hardly take a bite thinking about how illogical all of this is… how illogical… how ill… zzzzzzzzzzzzz…



“You humans have an inordinate propensity to consume what is not good for you…”


“Who else would I be?”

What are you doing here?

“To whom would you rather turn to discuss logic?”

You have a point.  OK, maybe you can help.  The National Hockey League locked out its players last month when the collective bargaining agreement between the league and the players expired.  Ever since, the league and the player’s union have had sporadic meetings and talks to try to hammer out an agreement.  Where we are is that anyone with half a brain can see where this is going to end up in terms of how the players and the owners split revenue – 50-50 – but they seem to be worlds apart on how to get there.  It’s an impossible situation.

“An ancestor of mine maintained that once you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.”

Yeah, well, it just seems that this thing is turning into the Gary versus Don show… the league Commissioner against the head of the players’ union.  There doesn’t seem to be a sense of a governing principle for what should drive the outcome.

“The needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few, or the one.”

Makes sense.  But what some folks can’t understand is, if the last agreement was such a win for the owners, why are they trying to claw out an even larger share of the pie this time around?  Why is the agreement they liked then the one they don’t like now?

“After a time, you may find that having is not so pleasing a thing, after all, as wanting. It is not logical, but it is often true.”

So how should the players respond to that kind of argument?

“If I were human, I believe my response would be: 'go to hell'. If I were human.”

As you can see, you’re not exactly catching these guys at their best.

“That much is certain.”

So, have you ever seen anything like this before?

“Some years ago, a Federation starship monitored an explosion on the Klingon moon, Praxis. We believed it was the result of overmining and insufficient safety precautions. The moon's decimation meant a deadly pollution of their ozone: They would have depleted their supply of oxygen in 50 Earth years. Due to the enormous size of their military budget the Klingons did not have the means to deal with this catastrophe. Then, at the behest of the Vulcan ambassador, I opened a dialogue with Gorkon, Klingon chancellor of the High Council. He proposed to begin negotiations at once.”

Negotiations for what?

“The dismantling of our starbases and outposts along the Neutral Zone, an end to nearly 70 years of unremitting hostility which the Klingons could no longer afford.”

I’m not sure this is quite that serious.

“It might be to a hockey fan.”

Again, good point.  It seems, though, that just like the last time the only peep we hear from the league’s side of the table is from Gary Bettman.  Bill Daly pipes up from time to time, but other than that it’s all Gary all the time.  There is supposed to be a gag order on the owners, but one has to wonder if all of them are following in lock step with the Commissioner.

“Without followers, evil cannot spread.”

I don’t know about that…

"Evil does seek to maintain power by suppressing the truth."

Scary when you think about it, but look, both sides seem to be in their own little world.

“I find the checks and balances of this civilization quite illuminating.”

You would.  But we’re at a desperate point in the process if there is to be a season.  Now we all know that desperation is a highly emotional state of mind. So how does your well known logic explain that?"

"Quite simply captain…"


“My apologies… Quite simply, Peerless, I examined the problem from all angles, and it is plainly hopeless. Logic informed me that under the circumstances, the only logical action would be one of desperation. Logical decision, logically arrived at."

And we are to take some wisdom from this?

“Logic is the beginning of wisdom; not the end.”

Yeah, well with these guys the end seems to be madness.

"Madness has no purpose. Or reason. But it may have a goal."

A goal?  Does either side look like it has a goal?  Is this the best they can do?

"May I point out that I have gotten a chance to examine the counterparts closely. They are brutal, savage, uncivilized and illogical. They are in every way examples of homo-juris, the very flower of the legal profession."


“I see I am not going too fast for you.”

So… do you think there will be any movement soon?

"It would be illogical to assume that all conditions remain stable."

But you’re not sure…

“Insufficient facts always invite danger.”

You’d never make it as a hockey columnist.


I see I’m not going too fast for you…



“I beg your pardon... Vulcan for 'touché.'”

But back to the NHL lockout… Can Bettman’s plan of controlling all the information from his side work for the owners?

“Terror must be maintained or the Empire is doomed.”

That sounds rather extreme.

“My apologies, that was my ‘Mirror Spock’ coming out for a moment.”

It’s been happening to a lot of hockey fans lately.  That’s why we need a dose of logic.

“Logic and practical information do not seem to apply here.”

You admit that?

“To deny the facts would be illogical, Peerless.”

Today is a big day.  With no talks scheduled, the league might cancel a large block of games.  Does that signal that the season is likely to be cancelled?

“It is more rational to sacrifice one month than six, Peerless.”

I'm not talking about rationality.

“You might be wise to start.”

I think the league and the players could use a start; they are acting like children holding their breath until they get their way.  “These "children" are about to wipe out every game in the NHL season.  Now, what do you suggest we do? Spank them?

“They know only that they need, Peerless.  But, like so many of us... they do not know what.”

Then I guess we’re stuck.  Not even logic seems able to break this logjam.

“Logic is a little tweeting bird chirping in a meadow. Logic is a wreath of pretty flowers which smell BAD.”

You’ve been quite helpful, Spock.  Is this where you give us the finger thing and the “live long and prosper” speech.

“I have a finger for the league and the players, although not the one you anticipate, I suspect.  And as for ‘live long and prosper,’ they shall do neither.  They have killed the fans’ joy of hockey and hope that any solution will be found soon.”