These days – some three years into the life of this great organ of the internet – it is sometimes worthwhile reminding ourselves of the speed at which the world is moving ever onwards into an uncertain future as we oldies fight our continuing and losing battle to keep up.
[When I paused for a breather and re-read that opening paragraph just now it suddenly dawned upon me that it might in fact be four years since the Rust first saw the light of day. You can put it down to my increasing old age and senility that I then reassured myself that in succession I then couldn’t remember … wasn’t fussed about the fact I couldn’t remember … and finally … that it didn’t actually matter anyway!]
I mention that this morning because of two news developments this week which – if either of them had been pitched as part of the basic ‘scenario idea’ behind a feature movie script being considered by the proverbial Hollywood mogul ten, or even thirty, years ago – would have been consigned to the ‘reject’ bin within the first five minutes for being far too weird and bizarre ever to be believable or indeed commercially viable.
Given his performance since the 2016 US presidential election campaign, not least thereafter as the 45th President, Rust readers might dismiss my first exhibit (Donald Trump) as too obvious and easy a target (facile even), tantamount to ‘shooting a fish in a barrel’.
Nevertheless, I did regard President Trump’s dismissive – one might add ‘typically hypersensitive’ – public reaction to a rash of internet and social media chit-chat speculating that, with the plea-bargaining of Michael Cohen (Trump’s personal lawyer) and the guilty verdicts handed down to Paul Manafort (Trump’s election campaign chairman) in his bank and tax fraud trial, the prospect of him being impeached was growing ever nearer because the signs of things going serious awry on this planet.
See here for a report upon and extract from Trump’s extraordinary interview on EuroNews, courtesy of – YOUTUBE
Do please tell me if I’m completely barking up the wrong tree and/or deluding myself, but surely the President of the United States claiming that if he were to be impeached the stock market would crash – as if this is somehow a reason that it wouldn’t be a wise move for his political opponents, still less the American people, to make – is a clear signal of mental instability and/or an inability on his part to think, or is it articulate his thoughts, in a rational or logical manner?
I’m suggesting that solely because – one would have thought – anyone in proper command of his faculties could have dealt with the subject in tens of different ways that would have ‘evaded’ the impeachment issue with humour, grace, style and/or by moving on to something else to indicate in one way or another than the very suggestion is too unworthy of consideration for him to answer directly.
That’s how politicians the world over throughout history would have dealt with such an ‘elephant in the room’.
Not by attacking or addressing the substance of any allegations behind the growing clamour causing the subject of impeachment to go viral on the internet, but by pointing out (probably, if he’d actually thought about it or taken anyone’s advice about it – that is if anyone is giving him advice these days – for the benefit of those who voted for him in 2016) that impeaching him would not be a smart thing for anyone to do, supposedly because of its likely impact upon the stock market.
And you’ll have also noted that President Trump is saying this – irrespective of whether or not the act instigating impeachment proceedings against him would be the right thing to do … under the American constitution, American federal or state laws, or even American morality and/or ethical principles.
Secondly, and on a completely different subject altogether:
Midway through the bulletin I watched with fascination an item by Colin Paterson, reporting from Manchester, upon the ‘weigh-in’ in advance of a ‘white collar’ boxing bout that is taking place tonight (Saturday 25th August) between two individuals of whom I had never heard: Logan Paul and KSI.
See here for a report by Ian Youngs (entertainment reporter) on this ‘sporting’ mega-story, as appears this morning on the website of – BBC NEWS
What struck me like a thunderbolt about this story – well, apart from the fact that I literally knew nothing about it beforehand – was the realisation of how the world of sport, and indeed the world generally, must be going forward 24/7 … whilst I – and people like me – have our backs turned and/or are blithely carrying on our existences assuming that the world as it is when we wake up this morning is pretty much going to be identical with the world as it was when we went to bed last night.
[Well, perhaps not as it was when I went to bed last night, which was about 8.20pm, but you know what I mean …]
Forty years ago, boxing was largely split along the lines of countries, continents and individual boxing promoters and whichever TV broadcasters, advertisers and sponsors they could attract.
These days the world of professional boxing is much changed.
Bigger and brasher promotions and marketing machines. Alliances between big promoters and big broadcasters straddling the globe. Pay-to-watch TV. Stiff new competition from the worlds of professional (albeit still theatrical) wrestling, UFC and martial arts to which the boxing promoters have to respond or die.
And then, of course, the world of the internet and social media. It’s almost better (from a publicity and commercial point of view) for elite boxers and boxing promoters to have popular Twitter, Instagram and WhatsApp accounts and their own YouTube channels than it is to be tied in to any particular broadcast or – God forbid – newspaper.
Hell, if one day a boxer and/or his connections were able to control – or get in with someone who does control – the entire means of communicating with the public, or even better (on top of that) the means of watching their boxing promotions ‘live’ right around the world, one day they could probably be making between ten and one hundred times the amount of money they’d have made from a single bout only three or four years ago, let alone fifteen.
In this world money talks.
To hell with those allegedly sleazy and/or corrupt Mickey Mouse world boxing associations with their ticker-tape world titles flying around like confetti – why not concentrate upon the purest form of relationship of all in showmanship, indeed in any industry or walk of life – that between (returning to boxing terms) ‘the man in the ring’ and the ordinary spectator in the event hall, in the street, or even at home watching proceedings on his television screen?