(I've been running since 7 AM Wednesday, doing all kinds of radio and TV cameos to explain the FIFA scandal. My friend Douglas Logan, the first commissioner of Major League Soccer, did have time to write his take, speculating on how US president Sunil Gulati would vote. Hours later, Gulati told the NY Times that he plans to vote for Blatter's only rival on Friday. Bravo, Gulati.
(Late Thursday night, Logan commented on Gulati's plans:
By Douglas Logan
In less than 24 hours I have to eat my words. I was wrong.
Yesterday, in a post titled “First Shoe Drops”, I expressed skepticism that the US vote for FIFA President would be cast against the incumbent, Sepp Blatter. I wrongly assumed that Sunil Gulati, President of the US Federation [USSF] would avoid making a courageous statement with our vote. Well, I blew it!
In the last hour media sources have reported that Gulati has announced that he will cast our vote for Prince Ali bin al-Hussein of Jordan, the challenger. With this act Gulati has put us in sync with the “good guys”. It sends a clear message that we will not continue to back the regime that has facilitated, fostered and protected corruption in the governance of this great sport. We are standing tall, regardless of the consequences.
At this hour I have no idea what the results of the election will be. It could be that Blatter’s support in the emerging nations of Asia and Africa, together with the steadfast backing of Putin and Russia cannot be defeated. It makes no difference. That there may be retribution is probable. Again, it does not matter. What does matter is that we are taking a moral stand against the corruption that threatens the game.
I have had my differences with Mr. Gulati over the years. Not in this instance. I apologize for my faulty presumption. I commend him for his leadership and courage. I am proud of him.
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(The earlier piece can be found on this link
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(Thanks to Doug Logan. The only thing I can add is that Chapter 18 of my soccer book is entitled: Blatter Scores an Own Goal. Then on Page 267 of the new paperback edition, in the Afterword about the Brazil World Cup last year, I have a long paragraph that begins:
"The biggest loser of all in 2014 was FIFA" and it ends:
"By the end of 2014 it seemed clear that, in some cosmic way, FIFA had been found out."
Your opinions are valuable. I'll get back to this in time for the next coronation of Merrie Kinge Sepp.)
“They may hate the cultural context they now find themselves teaching in, but they love their work. The Achilles’ heel of schoolteachers, one all too easily exploited by politicians, is that they love their students.”
(One of the best reads in the NYT these days is Margaret Renkl, in Nashville. In her latest post, Renkl describes the dedicated core of “born teachers” – the majority, she submits.)
(From Madeleine Albright in one of her final interviews in February):
“Putin is small and pale,” I wrote, “so cold as to be almost reptilian.” He claimed to understand why the Berlin Wall had to fall but had not expected the whole Soviet Union to collapse. “Putin is embarrassed by what happened to his country and determined to restore its greatness.” – Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, recalling her first meeting with the relatively unknown Vladimir Putin in 2000. – The New York Times, Feb. 23, 2022.