Josh Meredith's Blog

News Comment 8 I think

Posted in News Comments by Joshua on the October 19, 2011

On Sunday, during the IZod Indy Car race at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, a driver’s small mistake on the 12th lap resulted in a 15 car, fiery pile up. One driver, Dan Wheldon, got caught up in the pile up and his car flew through the air and into the safety net that surrounds the track. Unfortunately, he received major head trauma and was rushed to the hospital where he was pronounced dead two hours later.

I know I have gotten into the habit of writing about people who have died with previous post of Steve Jobs, Al Davis, and now Dan Wheldon but this is big new for a couple of reasons. For one, before the race, many drivers were voicing their opinion that the track was unsafe for Indy cars and that the banks were to steep and there were to many drivers on the track. Ill try to explain these valid complaints. Indy cars have the potential of reaching speed of 240 miles per hour on speed ways. Which is 20 mph faster than on a road course or track. Also, on speedways, drivers have the ability to drive three wide. So imagine driving 240 mph with a car on either side of you going equally as fast as all three of you go into a turn with cars in the same formation just split seconds behind and ahead of you. The steepness of the track just make it that much faster. When the drivers said that there were too many cars on the track their complaint made more than a little sense. Every race this year in Indy car had 19 or 20 drivers except for the Indy 500. For some reason, the Indy Car series governing body thought that since it was the last race of the Indy car season, that they should put 34 drivers in the race.

All of these factor contributed to the perfect storm for the already unsafe Indy cars. So on lap 12, one driver got loose and clipped another driver, which started a chain reaction which had 15 cars crash including four that literally flew and flipped over 200 feet through the air. One of those cars that flipped and flew through the air was Dan Wheldon’s.

Now the Indy car is already unsafe as it is. It has an open cockpit and they have it build so low to the ground to make it as fast as possible that they get air born quite easily. Ironically, Dan Wheldon was the main test driver for the new cars that the Indy series will be driving next year. The race was cancelled but the 19 drivers still in the race decided to do a 5 lap salute in honor of Dan Wheldon after they heard the bad news. Dan Wheldon will be miss tremendously by the sport.

My own thoughts the issue:

The Indy Series is trying to hard to catch up to NASCAR in popularity that they are willing to throw safety on the back burner. They probably shouldn’t even race on the speed ways much less put 15 more cars than normal on one. But, the more cars, the more exciting for a TV audience. Dan Wheldon was one of the most recognizable names in Indy racing. If you asked me to name as many people as I can in the series he would be one of the three names that I would have been able to produce off the top of my head. Danica Patrick and Dario Franccini are the other two. Dan Wheldon left behind a wife, and two you boys. They were able to be there in the hospital at his side when he passed when he passed. Indy has a long off season a head of them where they are going to be pushed to make some decisions about speed ways and the type of cars the drivers are driving. It seems that ever 5-10 years another driver is killed. Though I can’t remember their names, I know a driver was killed in 1999 and another one in 2006.

My only source for this news comment is really that I watch ESPN all the time so I don’t really have a web link for you. If you do want to read more on this tragic crash then you can just google Dan Wheldon. I will provide one of the youtube videos of the crash though so feel free to check it out. It hard to make out which car is Dan Wheldon’s, which can be a good or bad thing depending on how you want to look at it, but he is in one of the cars that flies through the air. There are so many videos of the crash on Youtube so I hope this is a good one.



News Comment 7

Posted in News Comments by Joshua on the October 13, 2011

This past week, American Football icon, Al Davis passed away at age 82 after battling many different health difficulties over the past few years. He was best know for being the owner and general manager of the Oakland Raiders who have taken on the image of the bad boys of the NFL which has kinda of hurt the image of Al Davis. Davis though held many different positions in football such as a scout, a position coach at USC, a commissioner of the AFL before the AFL and NFL merger, and the head coach of the Oakland Raiders. Al Davis was a visionary for football. He scouted the first African-American QB to every play at USC. He is also responsible for hiring the first African-American coach in NFL history.

Al Davis didn’t care who you were or what color your skin was, all he cared about was winning. His favorite quote, “Just win baby!” can be seen all over the Raiders practice facilities. And winning, for a long time, was what Davis’ teams did, including three super bowls in four attempts the with the Raiders and one AFL championship before the merger.

Before every NFL game this past weekend, a moment of silence was held in memory of Al Davis, who was survived by his wife and son.



If you want to read about Al Davis Career, go to wikipedia here

News Comment # I don’t know but it is this weeks

Posted in News Comments by Joshua on the October 6, 2011

Yesterday, Steve Jobs, passed away after many battles with a variety of sicknesses including a couple of cancers. He passed away with undoubtedly many more innovative ideas still brewing in his head. Apple, the brainchild of Mr. Jobs, released this statement yesterday, “We are deeply saddened to announce that Steve Jobs passed away today.Steve’s brilliance, passion and energy were the source of countless innovations that enrich and improve all of our lives. The world is immeasurably better because of Steve. His greatest love was for his wife, Laurene, and his family. Our hearts go out to them and to all who were touched by his extraordinary gifts.”

We all know about all the amazing ideas and inventions of Mr. Jobs, but the question now is, “What does the future of Apple look like.” Apple will still continue to be one of the most valued companies in the world thanks to their Mac computers, ipods, iphones, and ipads. But jobs was always looking past his creations that are a success now, and looking towards an innovated future. No, Apple’s competition is overall not too close, but they will continue to put pressure on Apple to continue to come out with the next generation of technology. Only time will tell if Apple will use the pressure to rise to new heights, but personally I feel that they are still going to be just fine. As yahoo put it, “They are still in good hands. Apple certainly has talented engineers, product managers and executives. CEO Tim Cook has been steering the ship for the last several years as Jobs battled his health issues. The company has excelled during this time. Another integral piece of the puzzle, Jonathan Ive remains. Ive is the lead designer behind just about every great product Apple developed in the last decade and half.In the end, the only thing we know is: things will be different. And, as Steve Jobs proved, different has the potential to be much better.”

News Comment 5

Posted in News Comments by Joshua on the September 29, 2011

There is no better way for a city to make money than to fine people because they wear their pants to low. In places all over the United States, people, generally young males, like to wear their pants way below their waists. Some people find this to be a fashion statement, while other find it to be flat out disgusting. My brother told me a story once where he was in Iowa City at a Kentucky Fried Chicken eating a delicious meal of fried unhealthy food, when a man walked up to the counter to order. According to my brother, his whole bare ass was hanging out of his pants because he probably thought he looked cool.

Last November, the city of Albany, Georgia decided to do something about the young people who wear their “Saggy Pants” like this. They decided to fine first time offenders $25, and multiple time offenders $200 if their pants were worn “three inches below the top of the hips exposing skin or undergarments.” Albany officials have given out 187 citations and collected over $4000 since last November. Other cities are probably taking notice to see if Albany is successful with their new law. Skateboarders, ballers, and rappers beware, your dress habits may start to cost you.

News Comment 4

Posted in News Comments by Joshua on the September 23, 2011

If you are on death row and your date for execution is coming up fast, don’t expect the last meal of your dreams the night before your execution. After Lawrence Russell Brewer, who was executed Wednesday for the hate crime slaying of James Byrd Jr. more than 10 years ago, asked for “two chicken fried steaks, a triple-meat bacon cheeseburger, fried okra, a pound of barbecue, three fajitas, a meat lover’s pizza, a pint of ice cream and a slab of peanut butter fudge with crushed peanuts” and then didn’t eat any of it. After a few letters and comments back and forth, Texas officals aggreed that the men and women on death row do not deserve special treatment on their final night. They will get to eat what everyone else in their unit is served. Brewer, was a white supremacist gang member. He was put on death row because he was convicted of chaining James Byrd Jr, 49, to the back of a pickup truck and dragging him to his death along a road. “Mr. Byrd didn’t get to choose his last meal. The whole deal is so illogical.”

The whole last meal before execution thing has been going on for quite a long time. In my opinion, if a state wants to offer a last meal, they should set a cap on how much money the meal cost. In this case, $15 should be enough. Tax payers should not be happy about this Brewer guy who probably ordered over $100 of food. It will be interesting to see if other states follow suit or if they continue to keep their last meal for people about to executed the same that they have always had it.


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News Comment 3

Posted in News Comments by Joshua on the September 15, 2011

This week on Monday Night Football, Tom Brady passed for a New England Patriots record 517 yards. Though that was very impressive, that is not what I am writing about. During the game Chad Ochocinco, Patriots wide receiver, was only involved in 18 plays and only had one reception for 14 yards because he dosen’t understand the play book yet. The day after the Patriots win, Chad Ochocinco tweeted this, “Just waking up after a late arrival,I’ve never seen a machine operate like that n person,to see video game numbers put up n person was WOW”. Later that day, Ochocinco got torn into by Tedi Bruschi (former Patriot line backer). Basically Tedi said that instead of waking up late, he should be at the stadium watching film and going over the play book. Instead of being in aw on the sideline, Chad should have been a part of the game. Then, NBC Sports reported that Rodney Harrison, former Patriot and teammate of Tedi Bruschi, agreed with Bruschi by saying many of the same statements. The next day, Chris Carter went on the Mike and Mike show on ESPN radio and said the “Chad Ochocinco is not a smart football palyer…He had better put something on twitter because his game didn’t speak for himself.” Since these former football stars have bashed Chad, he has only sent out one tweet in the last three days. Before this incident, he was sending over 20 tweets a day. To pose a quick question, should professional sports teams be able to out law tweeting for their players like many college programs have. Twitter eventually gets athletes into trouble one way or another but fans love staying connect with their favorite athletes and celebrities.!/ochocinco

News Comment #2

Posted in News Comments by Joshua on the September 8, 2011

With the NFL kicking off its season tonight, I decided that and NFL news comment would be appropriate.

According to the NY Times, ESPN and NFL have reached an agreement to extend their Monday Night Football deal. The deal also includes an option for the NFL to put a wild card playoff game and possibly a Super Bowl on the mother-ship (Dan Patrick of Fox Sports Radio calls ESPN the mother-ship to describing how ESPN dominates sporting news).

The deal means that MNF will be held on ESPN through the 2021 season. ESPN is not getting the show for cheap. It will cost the 1.9 billion a year, but in the minds of the top men at ESPN “We do not have a more important deal than the N.F.L.” The Deal also provided ESPN the right to show 500 more hours per year of NFL shows, including NFL LIVE and NFL Sunday Countdown. Only NFL Network will hold more air time for the NFL than ESPN.

News Comment

Posted in News Comments by Joshua on the September 1, 2011

For my news comments I went to the New York Times website and found an article about how the White House wants to observe 9/11. In the article it said that Obama wanted the media to minimize references to Al-Qaeda. The article said that Obama thought that the killing of Usama bin Laden is evidence that the terror group that plotted and executed the 9/11 attacks is becoming “increasingly irrelevant.” The article also stated other things that the White House wants done on the anniversary but this was the one that caught my eye. The article didn’t go into why he didn’t want references to Al-Qaeda. I just considered this pretty interesting because it seems we are not too shy about talking about Japan when the attacks on Pearl Harbor are mentioned even though the militaristic government that Japan had during WWII is much more irrelevant than Al-Qaeda is. This will probably be something that the media does not pay attention to for I feel Al-Qaeda and Usama bin Laden will probably be mentioned a lot in the coming weeks. None the less, it will be interesting to see how the media handles this.