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Bud Selig: labor scholar

Nov 19, 2010, 2:04 PM EST

Matewan

Yesterday Bud Selig, when talking about baseball’s recent harmonious relationship with the players’ union, said “In American labor history it’s probably as bad a relationship as ever existed.”

Rob Neyer — who knows a few things about history — wasn’t going to sit for that. He detailed a handful of labor disputes that, with all due respect to Bud “Abner Doubleday, in conjunction with the Great Gazoo and the saucer people, invented baseball” Selig, were a tad worse than the 1994-95 strike.  I won’t spoil it for you because I want you to read it yourself, but here’s a hint:  unless the owners employed Baldwin-Felts agents to crack picketing players’ skulls when none of us were looking, the baseball strike doesn’t make a top 1000 list of ugly labor disputes in American history.

I think history is going to be more kind to Bud Selig than a lot of us are on a day-to-day basis, because he’s done a pretty good job with the broad strokes.  But man, when you think that baseball has been run by judges and senators and generals and comparative literature professors cum Ivy League presidents, it’s kind of galling to be reminded that it’s currently being run by a used car salesman who lacks even a basic grasp on history.

  1. BC - Nov 19, 2010 at 2:08 PM

    Bud Light obviously doesn’t remember all the teachers strikes in the 1970s.

  2. lar @ wezen-ball - Nov 19, 2010 at 2:19 PM

    Especially when you consider that Selig is from Milwaukee, one of the most worker-friendly countries in the nation. We are, after all, the only major American city to have elected three socialist mayors (thanks, Alice Cooper!) – and that wasn’t because they all wanted to be miniature Stalins.

    The Bay View Massacre, in which the National Guard fired on 14,000 workers striking in favor of an 8-hr workday, killing seven, is one example of what made Milwaukee so in favor of workers’ rights…

    • Old Gator - Nov 19, 2010 at 5:18 PM

      Funny how the National Guard is so involved in some of our most egregious domestic massacres, isn’t it? The Bay View unit must have had a few guys left over to second to the Ohio unit that murdered those kids at Kent State, barring a few decades here and there.

  3. Utley's Hair - Nov 19, 2010 at 2:34 PM

    I’m thinking there might be a few 19th century guys called Molly in Pottsville, PA, who might have a problem with that assertion. ‘Cause, ya know, they had a pretty rough go of it themselves, what with them being railroaded and swung and all. And a few people in Chicago—some sort of a hay market or something—who also might disagree slightly.

  4. Jonny 5 - Nov 19, 2010 at 2:59 PM

    If every word that comes from Bud Selig from this point out was to come from the other end of his digestive tract, it would be his face from now on.

    • Utley's Hair - Nov 19, 2010 at 3:21 PM

      Whoa…heavy, Ogre…

    • BC - Nov 19, 2010 at 3:34 PM

      If my dog had a face like Bud Light, I’d shave its a$$ and teach it to walk backwards.

      • Old Gator - Nov 20, 2010 at 12:06 PM

        If my planaria had a face like Bud Light, I’d keep making vertical incisions in it until it had thousands of faces like Bud Light.

  5. yankeesfanlen - Nov 19, 2010 at 4:00 PM

    Since Bud Light was a used car saleman, he must have worked at a Ford dealer, and Henry told him history is bunk.

  6. sdelmonte - Nov 19, 2010 at 4:01 PM

    It is, however, a very adversarial relationship, more so than most others in this day and age. I think that is what he meant.

    Though obviously not what he said.

  7. Richard In Big D - Nov 19, 2010 at 5:17 PM

    To have the words “Bud Selig” and “scholar” appear in the same headline, let alone on the same internet, is an abomination for which one should be severely rebuked. Therefore, I rebuke you, Craig! Severely!

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