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I punted for our high school football team.

Punting was a very strategic part of our offense.

Back then; you know, in the "leather helmet" days, there were no fair catches. You either took the chance of catching the ball or letting it hit the ground and bounce until it was downed by the punting team.

My punts might average 35-40 yards-not very long-but they were extremely high.

The coach at the time taught me a soccer-style of punting that allowed me to kick very high, tight spirals.

The idea was that, when the punt returner saw many of my teammates surrounding him, just begging for him to catch it, he would let it bounce and since the ball would hit flat on the ground, it would bounce and then roll a long ways; pinning the opponent deep in their own territory.

It was really a thing of beauty.

Which is why you CANNOT compare what the Super Committee did today as "punting".

Lately, we seem to find ourselves searching for cute, little analogies for failure-utter and complete failure.

Failure is not punting.

Failure is not getting the punt off at all.

And the truth is that punting is more complex than what we are seeing out of our government.

So; I am tired of that analogy.

How much practice and hard work would you guess that it took me to punt the football accurately?

I worked the entire summer before my senior year to completely change my punting style-so much so that I beat out the guy who had punted the three, previous football seasons.

THAT is the sweet science of learning the skill, improving it and then executing it at game time.

If you want to compare this current crop of legislative losers who are supposed to be "leading" our country to my football team of 1969, then there is no comparison.

My team is in our high school's hall of fame and Obama & Company are walking the halls of shame!

At a time when we need hall of fame efforts out of our government, we find ourselves with a group that couldn't even carry the water for this country.

And I apologize to all of the hard-working trainers and assistants for that remark. I have tons more respect for them than I do for our Congress at the moment.

It's time to clean house and put a new team on the field.

At least if they punt, it will actually have an impact on the outcome of the game.

For the record; what we are witnessing in this country is not some game or sporting event.

Our elected officials need to stop reaching into their bags of cliches, stop making excuses, suck it up and GOVERN.

You know; give us something to cheer about.

Sorry; they have me doing it, too.

But, the clock is running down and there are no more time outs.

Crap; I did it again.

You get my meaning, though.


The opinions and views expressed are those of the article’s author, Art Goodrich, who also writes as ChiefReason. They do not reflect the opinions and views of, Fire Engineering Magazine, PennWell Corporation or his dog, Chopper. This article is protected by federal copyright laws and cannot be re-produced in any form.

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Comment by Art "Chief Reason" Goodrich on November 22, 2011 at 9:30am

Oh and just one other thing:

If you don't think that this inability of our government to control spending and to produce a budget isn't going to affect fire departments, then you haven't been reading firefighting stuff.

Politics, as you well know, has tremendous impact on the fire service.

It's not all about "why we search".

Many other dynamics at play.

Comment by Art "Chief Reason" Goodrich on November 22, 2011 at 9:27am

Yeah, Rhett. I used to write about fire stuff.

But this website has plenty of that from more formidable pros.

So, I write about other stuff.

Gives the website a more diverse product, you know.

Aren't you in the wrong sandbox?

Stay safe.

Comment by Bill Carlisle on November 22, 2011 at 8:12am

Great article Chief , I have to agree with you wholeheartedly on this issue , Very well written as always

Comment by Rhett Fleitz on November 21, 2011 at 8:39pm

Didn't you used to write about firefighting stuff?

This is still a firefighting web site right? 

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