Tn terms of the use of technology during play, there is a balance to be found between getting decisions right and maintaining the flow of the game. Certain calls — such as line decisions — are absolute, and it seems hard to believe technology cannot be developed to determine whether the ball has or has not crossed the line. Indeed, Dr. Paul Hawkins, the developer of the Hawkeye technology used in tennis and cricket, said after Lampard’s non-goal that his system could be implemented in soccer immediately. “Goal-line incidents are the only decisions which are entirely definitive and the answer can be provided to the referee within 0.5 seconds of the incident happening,” he said. “This makes a clear distinction between goal-line and other decisions. Referees want goal-line technology. It would be there to help them, not to replace them.”
Other incidents are rather more difficult, partly because many are down to interpretation and partly because of the lack of breaks in soccer. It has been suggested that a team should be allowed a certain number of challenges — as is the case in tennis and cricket — by which they can ask for a video to be reviewed and a referee’s decision potentially to be overturned, but again the question is when the challenge could be made. It must not become a means by which a manager can cynically check an opposition breakaway.
Still, a simple glance at a monitor would have ensured the two key calls on Sunday were corrected; then again, as
David James pointed out, given Lampard’s shot went about two feet over the line, and given Carlos Tevez was at least three yards offside, those were decisions it shouldn’t take technology to get right.
“Oneida Revere picked at her meal and stared dully across the table at the charismatic charlatan who had seduced her with the illusion of love and tarnished her family’s sterling reputation; she was wise to his bent mind games and though it felt like a knife through her heart, she knew it was time to stick a fork in it and call it done - her days of spooning with Uri Geller were over.”—Another Bulwer-Lytton entry
“For the first month of Ricardo and Felicity’s affair, they greeted one another at every stolen rendezvous with a kiss—a lengthy, ravenous kiss, Ricardo lapping and sucking at Felicity’s mouth as if she were a giant cage-mounted water bottle and he were the world’s thirstiest gerbil.”—
“In his ballsy nine-minute opening statement, Franken demonstrated how Citizens United directly damages democracy and, more importantly, its potential impact on the very bodies of Americans. He used it to mock the notion of liberal justices as “judicial activists” and to show the states’ rights crowd that it ain’t just about abortion or gay marriage. In other words, while Republicans were fretting about truly meaningless designations based on a worthless theory of the judiciary, Franken said, more or less, “Fuck your rhetoric. This is about lives.””—Kagan Hearings: Al Franken Kicks Republican Asses All Over the Hearing Room: The Rude Pundit (via silas216)
Chait protests too much, since if he’s right that Americans don’t care about soccer, why must he go out of his way to demean the sport?* If no one likes it, that ought to be self-evident. Perhaps it’s just an adverse reaction to his colleagues’ soccer mania. Or pain caused by the recent lackluster performance of his beloved alma mater?
In any case, I hope Chait will weigh in on this critical fact: As many people watched the U.S.-Ghana Round of 16 match as did the average World Series game last year. America’s pastime, no less. And the soccer game was at 2:30 in the afternoon, not in primetime. There was, apparently, a 38 percent increase in men 18 to 49 watching the cup.
“Fear and hate are cheap and easy recruiting tools. But they can result in a divided, dispirited and somewhat deranged nation, unable to agree even on a common set of facts when it diverges from a dominant narrative. If someone believes that the government is coming to seize their guns, news of Supreme Court cases seem distant and intellectual compared to emotional appeals by their favorite opinion-anchor. It might not even help to point out that early Hatriot groups like the early-60s Minutemen were telling their survivalist supporters about a plan to “confiscate all private fire-arms by the end of 1965.” But that cold-water splash of perspective should stir a healthy sense of skepticism; people have tried to sell that fear-infused snake oil before, and we shouldn’t start buying it now.”—Supreme Court Ruling: Obama Is Not Coming for Your Guns - The Daily Beast (via apsies)
At a place like Amherst Coffee, when employees sneak breaks I have observed it is often with the excuse of “stepping outside for a cigarette.” Indeed, although the law doesn’t provide for smoke-breaks anymore than it provides for bathroom breaks, many people (not all) seem to feel that their best chance of legitimating a five-minute break from work is to claim they need a cigarette. I have noticed a similar pattern at my workplace – it is smokers in our building who regularly step outside for air and respite.
All this has raised two questions in my mind. First, is there a connection between the lack of mandated employee breaks and smoking patterns? I don’t know about food service workers, but a study has been done among nurses that shows that those who smoke are much likelier to take (be allowed to take?) breaks than those who do not. (There are also some interesting gender dynamics at play when it comes to smoke-breaks.) What an irony if cigarette smoking, known for its ill-health effects, turns out to be the predominant means by which employees can reap the health benefits of regular, short work-day breaks. Perhaps if we want to truly address tobacco addiction in this country we also need to do something about workers’ rights to breaks in general.
Which leads to my second thought: why the heck shouldn’t we have laws mandating shift breaks in this country? It’s true that such breaks are already common in some industries, but the problem with leaving this up to employers’ discretion should be obvious. By not treating this as a basic workers’ rights issue, we are also missing an opportunity to utilize shift breaks to promote public health more generally.
The key thing to bear in mind about calls for harsh austerity in the face of a a depressed economy is that such calls depend on two propositions, not one. Not only do you have to believe that the invisible bond vigilantes are about to strike — that you must move to appease markets, even though right now bond buyers are willing to lend money to the United States at very low rates; you must also believe that short-term fiscal cutbacks will in fact appease the markets if they do, in fact, lose confidence.
That’s why the Irish debacle is so important. All that savage austerity was supposed to bring rewards; the conventional wisdom that this would happen is so strong that one often reads news reports claiming that it has, in fact, happened, that Ireland’s resolve has impressed and reassured the financial markets. But the reality is that nothing of the sort has taken place: virtuous, suffering Ireland is gaining nothing.
Of course, I know what will happen next: we’ll hear that the Irish just aren’t doing enough, and must do more. If we’ve been bleeding the patient, and he has nonetheless gotten sicker, well, we clearly need to bleed him some more.
“But while a Youtube video of a man tripping over a dog and falling headfirst into a toilet can become wildly popular, carefully orchestrated and well-funded online advertising campaigns for politicians or Hollywood movies can fail outright – making it seem impossible to predict what will get traction in the wilds of cyberspace.”—
England and Mexico’s misfortunes prompted a previously recalcitrant Sepp Blatter, the president of FIFA, to apologize on Tuesday for refereeing errors and to announce he would reopen the discussion about the use of goal-line technology in soccer.
“I deplore when you see the evident referees’ mistakes,” Blatter told reporters. “It has not been a five-star game for referees. I’m distressed by the evident referees’ mistakes.”
The two teams paid the price for FIFA’s resistance to upgrade its officiating at this World Cup when they were eliminated in the round of 16 after obvious mistakes by the referees.
England was denied an obvious score against Germany when Frank Lampard’s shot rattled off the crossbar and bounced well beyond the goal-line. Television cameras showed clearly — in real time — what the referee and his assistant were not in position to spot. Later that same day, Argentina was erroneously awarded a goal against Mexico when forward Carlos Tevez’s score was allowed to stand despite that the Argentine was clearly offside.
…“I apologized to England and Mexico,” Blatter said. “The English said ‘thank you’ and accepted that you can win and you lose, and the Mexicans bowed their head and accepted it.”
He also said he would renew discussions about technology to determine if a goal was scored, as was the case in the England-Germany game, not video replay that would have ruled out the Argentina goal against Mexico.
“The only principle we are going to bring back for discussion is goal-line technology,” Blatter said. “For situations like the Mexico game you don’t need technology.”
“My city feels like a crime scene and the criminals are all melting into the night, fleeing the scene. No, I’m not talking about the kids in black who smashed windows and burned cop cars on Saturday. I’m talking about the heads of state who, on Sunday night, smashed social safety nets and burned good jobs in the middle of a recession. Faced with the effects of a crisis created by the world’s wealthiest and most privileged strata, they decided to stick the poorest and most vulnerable people in their countries with the bill.”—Naomi Klein, Sticking the public with the bill for the bankers’ crisis - The Globe and Mail (via silas216)