[posted 1/19/11 to http://wrestlingbabylon.wordpress.com]
As Linda McMahon contemplates a run for Joe Lieberman’s vacant Senate seat in 2012 – after blowing through $50 million of her World Wrestling Entertainment fortune in a futile run for Chris Dodd’s vacant Senate seat in 2010 – I can imagine this conversation behind the gates of Hurlingham Drive in Greenwich, Connecticut:
VINCE McMAHON: Jesus Christ, Linda! Another run for office and we won’t even have enough money to pay for our son-in-law’s next triceps-tear surgery. Do you know how much it cost me to get Mashable’s “Best Social Network Campaign” for “Stand Up For WWE”? Before you know it, I’ll have to cut back on my tanning parlor visits and postpone my next facelift. And now look what you’ve started: a state audit of our classification of the talent as “independent contractors.” Give it a rest.
LINDA McMAHON: Save it, genetic jackhammer. Sixty is the new 40, and this is my turn. I never had so much fun in my life having microphones thrust in my face and being taken seriously. I’m going for it. The consequences of a campaign is a very sad thing when that happens.
In my opinion, Linda had one chance – slim – in a three-way race including Lieberman. In a two-way race, she also has one chance: none.
But that doesn’t mean that the state Republican Party, under the Yoda-inspired tutelage of its chairman, Mr. Suzan Bibisi, won’t put its next Senate nomination up for auction. Nor does it mean that a Linda McMahon race would not be colorful or even occasionally, if almost accidentally, enlightening. There are more “marks” in politics than there are in wrestling, because there are more voters than wrestling fans.
From my standpoint, the prospect of continuing high public visibility for Linda is musical. In case Connecticut’s new governor, Dan Malloy, had any thoughts of derailing the Labor Department probe of WWE misclassification, he should abandon them at once. In case Connecticut’s new U.S. senator, Richard Blumenthal, had any thoughts of mumbling a few sound bites about the evils of “steroids” and calling it a day, he should be motivated to get back “on message”: the message of the need to investigate the billion-dollar pro wrestling industry’s culture of death.
On this blog, I’m trying to tie it all together: not just steroids, but also prescription pharmaceutical abuse and serial untreated concussions. It’s a sports entertainment issue, and as we are finding out from the Federal Trade Commission-examined activities of Dr. Joseph Maroon – a consultant to both WWE and the National Football League – it’s a larger sportsworld issue.
Above all, it’s an American issue. Professional athletes might be entitled to take crazy health risks in pursuit of glory and riches, but the ages of initial steroid abuse and life-shortening and –destroying head trauma reach all the way back to our youth, well before informed consent. That is dumbing down the national IQ much worse than a misogynistic skit on Raw.
Senator Blumenthal – you and your colleagues in the 112th Congress proceed to do your jobs.
Linda McMahon – bring it on.