By Eric Schmidt

Anyone watching television in the last few months is well aware of the fact there is a Presidential election looming on the horizon. Then again, that depends what programing you are watching. The Miami Dolphins have suffered local blackout issues in recent years after fielding underachieving teams. The NFL offered up teams a new deal which allowed the blackout restrictions to be lifted with only 85% of their non-premium tickets to be sold prior to kickoff in order to have the broadcast shown in their home team.

Two teams in the southern half of Florida, the Dolphins as well as the Tampa Bay Buccaneers opted into the program. The Buccaneers were still unable to sell out for their home opener. The Dolphins still appear to be well short of meeting the league requirement, but the game against the Oakland Raiders will be shown locally as the team will purchase all of the remaining unsold seats at 34 cents on the dollar.

Dolphins CEO Mike Dee told the Sun Sentinel this afternoon, “As we’ve said many times, keeping the games on local television has been a priority of Steve Ross’ since he purchased the franchise. Any remaining unsold seats will be offered to Dolphins premium seat-holders and season ticket members on a first-come first-serve basis,” said Dee.

On the surface, this appears to be just a move by a franchise in order to allow a home opener of an NFL franchise to be shown in their market. Perhaps, one must did a little deeper and perhaps there is a political motive involved by this move in this election cycle.

I read an article earlier this afternoon from the Freebeacon.com which highlighted a new political advertisement put out by the Emergency Committee for Israel. The article states that the PAC has purchased a “significant ad buy” for the South Florida market for the advertisement which was going to be run during the Miami Dolphins-Oakland Raiders game.Why would the PAC make a “significant ad buy” if they weren’t guaranteed that the local game wasn’t going to be broadcast in the local market when that purchase has to be made in advance?

Dolphins owner Stephen Ross has already endorsed presidential candidate Mitt Romney earlier this year. In January, on CNBC, Ross stated, “This country needs Romney. It’s an extraordinary opportunity for America that we have a candidate like Romney that can come in in these times.”

There is no link to Ross purchasing the rest of the tickets in order to get the home game sold out in order to get it on television just to air a PAC set of commercials, this Dolphins franchise has a lot of issues and is dealing with a jaded fanbase which has been eroding for several years. Ross and GM Jeff Ireland have drawn the ire of the Dolphins faithful in recent years. However, you have to ask questions during this hotly contested election cycle. PAC advertisements have nothing to do with actual candidates, and I am not suggesting the Romney campaign has anything to do with this ad purchase.

Spending money in elections is nothing new. President Obama is holding a fund raiser on Tuesday with Beyonce and Jay-Z, at his New York City nightclub, it’s $40,000 dollars for a ticket in order to attend. While the President rails against the wealthy in the country, how many middle class folks will be at this event? That’s right, you can throw a few bucks in the bucket for the President and you’ll be entered into a lottery for two tickets to gain a chance to attend.

Millionaires raising hundreds of millions of dollars of other people’s money in order to hold a job which pays $400,000 dollars per year. Why can’t we go back to a Lincoln-Douglas style set of debates with no media types involved in order to settle these things? That’s right, it would require citizens to actually pay attention to material matters and actually become engaged instead of watching 30 second ads or 30 second sound bites on the news.

I’m tired of hearing from so many people that their life is so stressful these days. Life was stressful when the ice truck wasn’t on time in order to deliver the block of ice to your house to keep your food cold. It was stressful when you had to collect your own eggs, collect your own milk or wash your own clothes by hand, not when there was some glitch in your latest iPhone purchase or the fact the backup camera in your Lexus isn’t working.

Citizenship is not a spectator sport. You need to wake up in the next 50 days and pay attention, while making a decision for yourself.

 

 

 

 

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