Angelo Cataldi has a feature every Friday morning on his talk show on 94WIP, in which he names his choice for the winner of the week and the weasel (or loser) of the week in the local and national world of sports. For example, this week the winner was an Swedish LPGA golfer who was bitten by a black widow spider while golfing. Instead of quitting the tour, and the game, she took a golf tee, but punctured the bite wound on her ankle to release the poison, and then she completed all 18 holes. The weasel of the week was new Philadelphia Eagles coach Chip Kelly, who hired lackluster assistant coaches and re-signed failed QB Michael Vick. Then, for the rest of the Friday show, callers call in to offer better choices than Angelo’s for the winner and weasels of the week and Angelo’s cohosts vote on which is better.
I am wholly stealing this idea for a new Saturday morning column outlining my choices on who is the winner and loser of the week. I can’t call the loser a weasel, because I am told the conservative blowhard Rick Jensen already awards a weasel of the week. Rick must have stole from Angelo too.
Candidates for each can be from local Delaware or national politics. I will select my winner and loser based on something they did or said during the previous week (Saturday, February 9 to Friday, February 15), and then our wonderful commenters will debate my choices, and offer what they think are better options for each. And my fellow contributors can judge whose choices are better. My choices, and yours, are relegated to the world of politics and government. I can’t chose that Blade Runner guy from South Africa for allegedly murdering his model wife, because he is not in politics or government.
For my Loser of the week, I offer Wilmington Mayor Dennis Williams. As all local political officials are wont to do, Mayor Williams rushed down to the New Castle County Courthouse on that horrible Monday morning. He was seen in early TV reports from the scene, and gave interviews that, as reflected in the early news reports, offered only either false or incomplete information.
Wilmington Mayor Dennis Williams said Monday in a telephone interview that the shooter was killed by police. Williams said he was told the man shot and killed his wife and wounded two other people about 8:10 a.m. Monday. Williams said the two were estranged.
As we know now, after a complete police investigation, that it was not the husband, David Matusiewicz, that was the shooter, but rather his father. And we know that the Police did not kill him, but rather Thomas Matusiewicz took his own life. I don’t blame Mr. Williams for getting the information wrong, because, as we saw in Newtown, Connecticut, the fog of war in early reports from the scene are often incorrect. Indeed, I am sure Mr. Williams was given that false information by the police. What I blame Mr. Williams for is negligently offering that early information to the press in an official capacity. Public officials need to let the police speak as to the details of the crime once the police have assembled all the information of the crime, for precisely the reason that early reports are often wrong. Instead, perhaps because the new mayor wanted to be seen as in charge during a massive crisis early in his term, he sought the press’ attention.
The mayor would have been better served comforting those at the scene, for that is good press, and let the police do their job and speak for themselves.
For my winner of the week, I offer President Barack Obama, who gave a well received and powerful State of the Union address that masterfully championed very popular policies and programs that the Republicans are steadfast against, wedging them into a difficult corner, all with the eye towards 2014 and 2016. Very well played Mr. President.