By any chance, did you catch the annual NFL draft extravaganza on ESPN? The NFL draft has evolved from a handful of men in a cigar-smoke filled room making player selections to an over the top live primetime TV spectacular. This year’s draft featured first round picks in slick suits walking down a long flight of stairs after being selected, which oddly made the players look like they had just been named prom king.
Between each of the first round selections the NFL allotted 10 minutes, which made the night interminably long, leaving the TV personalities with not much to do but feverishly critique each selection. This critiquing is the real star of the NFL draft show, and it seems every sports journalist in America has to get a piece of the action as he rushes to post or announce his report card and grade each team’s draft success or lack thereof on draft night. For instance, it was conventional wisdom that the Chicago Bears got a D for their first-round pick, and the Jets an A-minus.
Of course, this is all speculative nonsense as the players haven’t played a down yet, and it may take up to five years to actually get a real perspective of how teams did on draft day. So what is there to grade? In the world of entertainment, facts don’t matter, as speculation, excitement, and controversy help sell the product, which in this case is football.
To the media, politics has also become nothing more than entertainment, no different than the NFL, the movies, or rap music. They even build story lines to help build the drama. Republicans are starving the poor and banning Muslims, stay tuned at 11 to see if Elizabeth Warren can swoop in and save the day!
Not to be outdone by sports journalists with their meaningless grades on draft picks, political pundits of every stripe have been in a frenzy, giving meaningless grades to Donald Trump’s for first 100 days in office. These grades and critiques are just as pointless and as speculative as the grades given on draft night.
Of course, there is no real significance to a president’s first 100 days in office, other than it is a round number. Unless you’re William Henry Harrison, 100 days does not a presidency make. Can you imagine how CNN would have graded Republican Abraham Lincoln’s his first 100 days had it been around after the fall of Fort Sumter? A double-F minus?
We knew what Trump’s grades would be before they were posted. Those few in the media who supported Trump in the past gave him a decent grade, and those many in the media who have gone after him with everything they’ve gave him an F if not an F-minus. They bolstered their case by quoting an opinion poll confirming that Donald Trump is more unpopular than Hitler and telemarketers combined. Why anyone would care what the pollsters say about something as abstract as Trump’s first 100 days, when their own polling earned them an F last fall is beyond me.
It is also a given that come November 2020, when Trump stands for reelection, 99% of the American voters won’t even remember what happened during the first 100 days of his presidency. so why worry about it?
So, for the record, how has President Trump done so far? He can point to some successes like Neil Gorsuch and the rescinding of several banana republic-like Executive Orders by President Obama, but for the most part his presidency is in the future. What will Iran and North Korea do, and how will we react? Will the stock market continue to climb or will it crash? Can he end the sanctimonious Sanctuary Cities and rogue federal judges? Will Obamacare still be the law of the land? How many unforeseeable problems will come up and how will he handle them? Only time will tell.
Last year the most impactful rookie in the NFL was Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott, who wasn’t selected until the fourth round. If you go back and read last year’s first round draft grades you won’t see any team’s grades suffer for not selecting Dak in the first round. All the so-called experts misjudged how good Dak would be.
Keep that in mind when reading about this year’s draft grades and Trump’s first 100 days. None of it means anything at this point.