Posts Tagged ‘what is the NHL lockout about?’

First, click on the following link as you read this article:  Alex Ovechkin’s earnings by the second

I apologize to those returning to this site expecting some form of current affair in the NHL. I know you’re starved for anything related to the sport we love to watch, play, and comment on.  But over the months I thought for a long while, as I’ve listened to the bickering between owners and players, about all the things the NHL’s $3 billion dollars of revenue can assist with other than men skating around chasing a frozen rubber puck and smiles on owners’ faces.

Let’s put things in perspective, shall we?

  • A new recruit on the police force makes $45,000 a year in Ontario.  He/she is expected to protect the peace, save lives, and put his/her life in the way of danger for you and me.
  • A down and out person needs $175 weekly to live in the worst areas of the Downtown Eastside .  Compare this to the $375 monthly stipend afforded by the BC Government and you get the picture.
  •  According to Lisa Kristine, a modern anthropologist and humanitarian, there are over 27 million people enslaved in 2012, or, twice as many people as were taken during the trans-atlantic slave trade during the colonial and post-colonial era.  Don’t believe me? Listen and watch this TED talk and you’ll be haunted forever.
  • Public education budget cuts are now a  silent but global concern.  In BC over alone, over $70 million dollars is being cut from post secondary subsidy, and public secondary and elementary schools are not being additionally funded despite inflationary costs. It is estimated that school in BC are going to be short some $100 million dollars in 2013.
  • 10 million people suffered and died from communicable diseases this year.
  • 1.5 million people died from water related illnesses this year.
  • There are 1 billion undernourished people in the world
  • 30,000 people died of hunger today alone.

So, forgive me for my cynicism during this labour dispute. I am all for worker’s rights, but when the NHLPA speak about “fairness” and “going to work”, as in this video released by the NHLPA, I can only react with a sense of understanding.  Meanwhile, locked out players aren’t really giving off the image that they’re contributing to their hockey communities in meaningful ways as they flee for Sweden and Russia to earn money there.

My understanding, however, is not for the players or the owners who are negotiating a privately settled contract in a publicly appreciated and supported industry.

In a world where the divide between rich and poor has, perhaps, never been as stark, the message to both is: it’s time to shut-up and play, because there are other injustices in this world which bear more worth mentioning when it comes to money.

Now ask yourself how many seconds went by as you read this and go back to Alex Ovechkin’s by the second earnings.  Ask yourself, how many groceries would this buy you? Which bills would be taken care of?  And, perhaps more importantly, who might it help in this disparate world of ours?

In the thirty or so minutes it has taken me to write this, Alex Ovechkin would have earned more than an average two-week pay-day of a nurse who is taking care of our loved ones in under-funded hospitals. What do you think the NHL earns per second?  Cut the integer: 3 000 000 000 and paste here.

Still care about the negotiations?


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