op-ed

Things that pissed me off in 2010

Rick Robinson Author, Writ of Mandamus
Font Size:

Wow, what a year.

When historians look back at 2010, they will write that it was the year when people were exasperated. Voters were angry at politicians. Politicians were angry at each other. Countries fought wars — and I wasn’t too damn happy myself.

First, I am royally pissed that President Obama appointed a carp czar and never once asked for resumes from residents of Ludlow, Kentucky. The town of my youth is located on the Ohio River and, according to the US Bureau of Such Things, has more carp fishermen (per capita) than any other town in America.

Yet President Obama hired an Illinois bureaucrat, Joe Goss, to control the — get this — $80 million budget used to fight carp. Specifically, Mr. Goss will be czaring against the dreaded Asian Carp.

Southerners brought the Asian Carp here in the 70s to clean retention ponds. The species quickly became the kudzu of fish, spreading across the Midwest faster than newly constructed Bass Pro Shops. Now, after the Asian Carp have done the menial labor that other fish wouldn’t perform, the America government wants to get rid of them. Meg Whitman’s housekeeper should find this story vaguely familiar.

After his historic appointment, Czar Goss jumped feet first into the carp battle and announced that he isn’t going to do anything until the federal government releases a study in 2011. After People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals file their response to the study, Goss will get right on that carp thingy.

The river fishermen of Kentucky’s north shore would never waste good fishing time with such inaction. In fact, Ludlow’s Gaither brothers would handle the carp issue with immediate dispatch, but it would probably involve a case or two of beer and a lot of dynamite.

ABBA in, Zevon out

Fish weren’t the only things that pissed me off this year. 2010 marks the year that ABBA was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

In and of itself, ABBA’s ascension to rock immortality doesn’t piss me off. But, the fact that ABBA is in the Hall of Fame, and the late Warren Zevon can’t even get a nomination, demonstrates how meaningless the iconic trip to Cleveland has become.

Known as one of the great singer/songwriters of our generation, Zevon tragically died of cancer in 2003. His final album, The Wind, won more hardware and critical acclaim than some in the Hall gathered in their entire careers.

And knowing that the Beastie Boys are nominated on the 2011 Zevon-less ballot only pisses me off more. Now, I realize that lines like “Fight for Your Right to Party” are significant lyrics for some, but come on…

Shane MacGowan, the front man for the Pogues, has a Wikipedia bio that includes the heading “Self-destructive behavior.” MacGowen’s liver will likely get into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame before Warren Zevon makes it in. In fairness, based on what it has been through over the years, MacGowan’s liver may actually be more deserving of rock recognition than ABBA and the Beastie Boys.

People who agree with me on this (Zevon, that is — not MacGowan’s liver) can go to the official Warren Zevon website (www.WarrenZevon.com) and sign an electronic petition to the knuckleheads on the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Nominating Committee encouraging Zevon’s nomination and induction.

And I could go on and on about 2010

It’s not as if I tried to spend the year pissed off. My hometown Cincinnati Reds made it to the National League playoffs, but then Larry King went and announced that Hugo Chavez was a Reds fan. I wonder if Chavez turns the games off when Cuban defector Aroldis Chapman closes out the ninth inning with his 106 mph fastball.

We spent billions to get to Mars but we still haven’t mapped the bottom of the oceans on earth.

Elliott Spitzer and David Vitter were punished in 2010 for hiring hookers. Their punishments were a television show and reelection, respectively.

I’m so pissed off about 2010 that, maybe — just maybe — I could sit in for Keith Olbermann the next time he gets suspended.

Rick Robinson is the author of political thrillers which can be purchased on Amazon and at book stores everywhere. His latest novel, Manifest Destiny has won seven writing awards, including Best Fiction at the Paris Book Festival.