Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Shank the Sham and His Pharisees

All of us blog boys (and girls) over the age of fifty certainly can identify the above play on words -- based upon the Sixties band Sam the Sham and the Pharoahs (who could forget Little Red Riding Hood or Wooly Bully?).

What brings it to mind is Dan's over-the-top, self-serving, self-imposed appearance on Dan Patrick's radio program on Tuesday. In the words of my DSW compatriot, Dave M. ...

"Shaughnessy was on the Dan Patrick Show ... and man, what an absolute joke ... all the pettiness revealed itself ... First, it was Shaughnessy who forced his way ... on the ... show - calling in to offer his opinion. Unfortunately, Patrick seemed all [too] willing to oblige. All the typical crap [concerning Curt Schilling] - complaints about the blog; complaints about the politics; complaints about being unethical for accepting [$8 million] while injured; and complaints about being … a big lug. Shank claims to be brave enough to call Schilling out on his inconsistencies but that Schilling always picks one member of the local media to pick on and it was poor little Shaughnessy."

What a surprise! First, to don the cape of a super hero! The maligned defender of all thing true and just. Yep, that's our boy!

OK, let's see. Why don't we go through Dave's points sequentially, shall we?

First, imagine Schilling's temerity to establish his own blog so he can offer his own opinion and bypass the media-imposed filters. That, in itself, should warrant a prison term, eh? Oh, and the guy's a right winger who openly, vehemently and vocally supported John McCain? Well, that should warrant the electric chair.

As far as the unethically obtained $8 million? I seem to recall Red Sox general manager Theo Epstein's public pronouncement thereafter that Schilling passed his physical with flying colors before the "big lug" signed his 2008 contract. But, naturally, Shank never bothered to correct his previous scurrilous claim. Guess Theo (backed by his minions, of course!) should've saved his breath.

(Sort of reminds me of Dan's identification of one of the three black Negro League players who tried out for the Sox back in 1945, Marvin Williamson. Uh, Dan, his name was Marvin Williams. Yet, twenty printings later, Dan's fairy tale "Curse" book continues to misidentify the man. Surprise! Surprise! Now that's responsible reporting!)

Inconsistencies? Boy, Dan, you are just such a pillar of integrity. Not!!!

Granted, I think Shank deliberately writes inflammatory columns and makes ridiculous assertions simply to attract attention and generate buzz. I also believe that the CHB goes out of his way to insert himself into the story, to become a play-AH in his own right. That said, I am outraged that the man has so little self-perspective that he constantly perceives himself as a victim.

I don't think I could put it any better than Roger Bournival who posted the following:

"In other words, intentionally pissing off fans and readers (let's assume, for argument's sake, they are one and the same) is a testament to the noble columnist's objectivity and perspective (whatever the latter's supposed to mean). Criticism of said columns by 'basement-dwelling blog boys' (a rough, but accurate portrayal of well, us! by yourself, Shank and other defenders of the ever-shrinking, dying, dead-tree media) is thus minimized and summarily dismissed. Failure to incorporate self-analytical and self-correcting procedures in one's work product results in a recursive process that reduces the eventual answer to zero."
Whatever one thinks of Schilling's faith, politics or outspoken persona, the man is genuine. And without his presence in 2004 and 2007 the Red Sox would still be seeking the Holy Grail of another world championship.

It's deliciously ironic that a Philadelphia Inquirer scribe (who apparently disagreed with much of what Curt vociferously stands for) penned a wonderful column entitled Curt Schilling has a lot of detractors, but belongs in the Hall of Fame reprinted in the Boston Herald. Kudos to the Herald for having the guts to print it. And shame on the Globe editors for allowing this vocal version of Harpo Marx to continue to spew his venom without any constraints!


Anonymous said...

Although columnists are supposed to offer their own opinions, I think CHB should stand for cold hearted bastard. He should be ashamed. Poor maligned Dan. What BS!

Roger Bournival said...

Jerry G - thanks for the snippet!

What's best is that you've now insulated yourself from further criticism from the board's foremost (sorry, I meant only) defender of Shank on the following point:

Never bother with a reader who claims disagreement with a writer is the result of an intent to intentionally (tick) him off.

While it's unclear as to exactly why such claims should not be bothered with, I'll offer my reason - it's next to impossible to refute the bloody obvious.

Thanks for taking that one off the table, OB!

Anonymous said...


"A columnist's job is not to be a fan ..."


But why should a columnist be allowed to instigate friction, manipulate information, humiliate other beings, and propagate paranoia?

Are the (*)uck$ that important to the CHB?

The Shank chose to deal with the devil hoping to trade in his shadowy inferiority complex by promoting for the boss-man. Why shouldn’t we hold him accountable for wasting our time?

We “ain’t” stupid man.

“Rare indeed is the news story that has been broken without someone with an agenda getting a big mouth.”

True again OB.


Paul said...

What bugs me the most is that Shank is considered the "voice" of Boston sports on national outlets like ESPN...probably because he hates Boston sports fans and thinks they're stupid.

Chris said...

CHB's television appearances result from pleading. Shaughnessy needs alternate venues for his voice, face, and commentary. With The Globe nearing extinction for its print edition and finding no pot 'o gold from its on-line version, CHB ought to take up pottery...or something.