Archive for the ‘journalism’ Tag

Yes, Stephen Curry Really Is Worth $201 Million | Matthew Doarnberger   Leave a comment

Image result for image of steph curryThe aftermath of an entertainer, especially an athlete, receiving an enormous contract worth more than average Americans will see in their entire lifetimes often causes some pretty opinionated responses. Thus, it was no surprise that this was the case when Golden State Warrior’s point guard Stephen Curry received a new contract for five years totaling $201 million.

Source: Yes, Stephen Curry Really Is Worth $201 Million | Matthew Doarnberger

This is currently the richest deal in NBA history. To earn this type of payday, Curry has won two MVP’s and two NBA Championships over his past three seasons.

Beyond the Bare Necessities

As it turns out, the Charlotte Observer’s Scott Fowler is not so thrilled about Curry’s new deal. A recent article of his is entitled “Is Steph Curry really worth $201 million? Is anybody?” Fowler makes a number of statements in the piece disapproving of the contract. Let’s take a look at these claims in order to debunk the totality of his argument.

Let’s start with this: No human being on the planet needs to be making a guaranteed $201 million over five years, including Steph Curry.

Of course, “needs” is a relative term. If the true necessities of life can be reduced to food, water, clothing, and shelter, then anything outside of basic subsistence is something that an individual does not “need.”

Someone living an impoverished life would view Fowler’s comfortable, middle-class life the same way that he views the life lived by Curry.

Although I don’t profess to know how much Scott Fowler is paid by the Charlotte Observer for his services, I’m quite certain that he makes enough to afford things that he doesn’t necessarily “need” for his survival. Therefore, someone living an impoverished life in a third world nation would view his comfortable, middle-class life in America the same way that he views the life lived by Curry.

So if Fowler can legitimately criticize Curry’s contract on the grounds that it enables him to make much more than he “needs,” then it would also be legitimate for a third world resident to criticize the amount that Fowler is paid given that he is comparatively compensated as a sports journalist to a degree that also enables him to live far above an individual living at the subsistence level in an underdeveloped country.

Fortunately for Fowler, those who make so much less than he does do not have the means to go online and criticize him for his comparatively lavish salary.

Athletes Are the Ones Filling Stadiums

When some public school teachers are fortunate to make $40,000 a year, no athlete needs to average $40 million (which, at that rate, would fund 1,000 school teachers a year).

What Fowler has done here amounts to choosing a popular, presumably underpaid profession that garners sympathy from the public and highlights the massive gap between their salaries and the salary he is demonizing. A closer look at both teachers and star athletes in popular, American sports shows why this gap appropriately exists.If Curry receives a gargantuan contract for his abilities, that doesn’t mean that teachers have less as a result.

After all, the number of people willing to spend money on tickets to watch a teacher perform his/her job would not be enough to fill a sports stadium. In addition, there isn’t a market for televised teaching to the point that advertisers are willing to spend money to put commercials on during a televised teaching session.

Since the athletes are the ones that people are paying to see and advertisers are willing to spend money in order to advertise to those who watch via television, it makes sense that those athletes should be compensated for the revenue that they bring in. In fact, due to the NBA “max salary” format and the league’s salary cap, one could argue that the game’s best players are actually underpaid.

This criticism gets even more absurd when considering that the owner of NBA teams (in Curry’s case it’s Joe Lacob) is worth more than any of the team’s players. If NBA stars like Curry weren’t able to make this much money, then their wealthier owners would get to keep more of it.

In addition, money isn’t zero-sum. Simply because Curry receives a gargantuan contract for his abilities, that doesn’t mean that teachers or other professions have less as a result. In fact, given the amount of taxes that Curry will pay on his new salary, he will be sending more money to the local educational system (not that there is any connection whatsoever between spending on education and student performance).

Just Compensation

Lastly, let’s not succumb to the myth that the state can simply “take” from someone who makes an “unfair” salary and just give it to someone that society feels deserves it. We’ve seen this through anti-poverty programs where it takes the government many times more dollars to actually spend on those programs than what actually reaches the intended target.

NBA players are compensated for the audiences they attract and the value that they create.

So it then looks highly unlikely that this same government could seize a huge portion of Curry’s income and seamlessly distribute it among teachers (despite The Ringer’s Michael Baumann claiming that we would be better off if we did this). Sorry, but the track record of the state strongly suggests otherwise.

So don’t be upset at Curry, Lacob, the NBA or anyone else for this situation. NBA players are justly compensated for the audiences they attract and the value that they create. Teachers are not undervalued or underpaid as a result of large athlete contracts. The quicker we realize all of this, the quicker we can stop this misguided blame for society’s ills.

Reprinted from Libertarian Sports Fan.


Posted August 10, 2017 by aurorawatcherak in Common sense

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Interview with Lucinda E. Clarke   1 comment

LClarke Author PhotoToday’s interview is with Lucinda E. Clarke, a friend from the Booktrap, and quite the adventuress. Tell us something about yourself, Lucinda. 

Starting with basics, I was conceived and born in Dublin, Ireland (I don’t remember the conception part too well), then taken to England. By the time I got married I had spent years and years in the classroom, then trained to spend the rest of my life in the classroom, so I was not ready for the big, bad world.

That is so true for all of us.School is definitely not real life.

After first wedding, I tried crofting in Scotland (disaster we couldn’t get a spade through the permafrost) – bred small animals for pet shops (disaster, they all died) –  bred dogs (disaster, one took off and killed chickens).

So we took off for Kenya (disaster, husband walked off the job and we were almost stranded). On to Libya (disaster, this time we were thrown out of the country altogether), then Botswana (disaster, husband got fired, and I ran the worst riding school in the world). Then South Africa (finally success!!!) After slogging for a while in the classroom (this time I was fired) I began to write for radio and TV. Eventually I had my own video production company.

LClarke EggshellsWhat was the first story you wrote and how old were you?

You want me to remember that far back? I think it was when I was about 6 and it was written on little scraps of paper and I was so proud of it until my mother sneered at it. I do remember being an avid reader of Enid Blyton and thinking this doesn’t look too difficult, I could do this! (I was a precocious brat).

What are you passionate about?

My writing. Injustices against women. Cutting down trees. Population control.

What can you not live without?

In no particular order – my laptop, my iPad and my iPhone, a good internet connection and I better add my husband in there as well. Peace and quiet to write, beauty around me, that is vital too.

LClarke TLPYou lived in South Africa, have met Nelson Mandela, (scary) had a huge career in broadcast journalism (thank you). Tell us about that.

I am passionate about Africa and her people, but I just wish they would go the mentorship route and stop worrying about skin colour. In my books Truth, Lies and Propaganda and More Truth, Lies and Propaganda I tried to point out that mindsets and tribalism and nepotism are a factor, not race. I want to cry when I see how things are developing now in South Africa, everyone is adversely affected, all races and all people, except for the elite few who are exploiting those who are weaker.

Tell us about Walking Over Eggshells.

Originally I wrote this as a long, long letter to my children, and it stayed in manuscript form for several years. Then after the bombardment from the media about sexual abuse and how terrible it was, I began to get angry. Sure, that is horrific, but emotional abuse is more insidious. It does not stop at maturity, it does not stop if you move away, it goes on relentlessly, even after death. It’s difficult to pinpoint, almost impossible to explain and a nightmare to prove. It robs you of your self worth, your self confidence and your relationships with everyone you meet.

Then one day I decided to publish, in the hope that it might help even a few people who had had the same experiences. The emails I’ve received have been amazing and I have no regrets about sharing my story with the world (well a few people anyway!)LClarke More TLP

But it’s not a doom and gloom book, there is lots of humour there, and I think, an easy read.

Tell us about Amie.

Amie is my first real attempt at a full length novel. Most of my documentaries I turned into short, funny stories as they were aimed at educating and I feel this is best done through humour.

It was much harder than the autobiographies as I had to ‘make stuff up’ and I had to remember who was where and how they would behave in character. I’ve written stage plays, so I had a grounding in that format, but a 108,000-word book was much, much trickier. I just sit down at the lap top and write. I only have a basic storyline in my head and the characters take over and then I have to go back and mop up afterwards in case they made mistakes or contradicted themselves. It’s nothing to do with me, I blame them every time, I’m just on the scene to write down what they tell me.

LClarke AmieOh, I so represent that!

I have just finished the second Amie book – Amie and the African Child – which I hope to publish in August if not sooner.

I have a love / hate relationship with Amie, but she has become more feisty and so I like her a little better now.

I love feisty female characters. Tell us about Truth, Lies and Propaganda 1 and 2. Having been a journalist, I find that most of my former colleagues don’t see themselves as propagandists, but I know they are. So talk about that some.

These two books follow my writing career from the beginning to when I left South Africa. I had dreamed of writing for a living ever since I could remember, but was told to ‘get a proper job’ (hence the teaching).

It’s almost impossible not to play the propaganda game. Every newspaper has an agenda or supports one political party or another, or the views of the proprietor. If you are paid to write, then you write what the client wants, and I had my share of the clients from hell! You soon learn to take criticism (the customer / client is always right even when they are wrong), hone your tact and diplomacy and I guess lifting the lid on the few blatant examples in the books, I was getting my revenge!

Sure, you can starve in a garret and hold fast to your principles, but if you want the luxuries in life, such as food, a roof and clothes to wear, then you toe the line. I worked with some amazing people and many of the stories I reported and filmed were true to life, but of course it is the ones which tell lies, which tell the funny stories.

I feel very privileged to have been welcomed into rural huts, township shacks, Chief’s councils, had my fortune told by a witch doctor, visited AIDS patients, there are just too many incidents to mention here. I believe I saw Africa as few others have. I’d ask my crew to take care of me as I was probably the only white person for miles in any direction. I have to read my books to remember it all.

Every incident in both books really happened without exaggeration.

What are your literary plans for the future?

This is going to sound so pompous, but you asked? OK, so I’m not going to win the Nobel Prize for Literature, they don’t go for the kind of books I write. One of my heroines is Dorothy Parker and I would be in my seventh heaven (or the other place) if any of my phrases or sayings were to be printed in a book of quotations, that would be great!

Of course I’d love to be on all the bestseller lists, and write the screen play from one of my books. On a more practical level, I’m hoping they will put up a shelf for me in the local old folks home, so I can gaze at my books when I can no longer get out of bed. I’m almost up to 5 now and I plan to write a whole lot more.

Anything else you would like to say.

Since I have been a lecturer in script-writing, I can’t help be honest, so if anyone asks me for a review, or comments they will always get the truth. I still have grave doubts about my own writing, I’ve always been the same and never believed all the awards even when I walked up to collect them. The only advice I can give any new writers is to sit down and write, do it and then get ready to change it again and again until it is right. It’s worth it.

I am happy to be self published, and I’ve been approached by a publisher and refused. It’s much harder on your own, but more rewarding. I’ve been published by two of the Big 5 way back in the 80’s and so far (I could be bribed) I’m happy to continue being self employed.

There are two amazing moments in life – when you hold your baby in your arms and when you hold your first book in your hands.

Links, websites, cover art, author pic, etc.

Walking over Eggshells

Amie an African Adventure

Truth, Lies and Propaganda

More Truth, Lies and Propaganda

Blog link

Web page


twitter name   @LucindaEClarke


Facebook             My page


 Walking over Eggshells page

Amie page   Amy page

Further links for Walking over Eggshells

Barnes & Noble

Apple itunes




iTunes store

amazon author page Lucinda…/B00FDW…/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_3…

Interview with RJ Askew   2 comments

Today’s interview is with RJ Askew, author of One Swift Summer (previously titled Watching Swifts).

Tell us something about yourself, Ron.

Ron AskewI am from Lancaster in Lancashire in the North-West of England. I did a law degree, but was destined for a career in words, and so moved to London where I got a job as an assistant with a firm that published a book called GO – Graduate Opportunities. It was a start.
So, you became a writer?
I segued into selling advertising space for a couple of national newspapers, but was better at writing adverts than selling space and so used this knack to talk my way into a copy-writing job with a small-time advertising agency.Several copy-writing jobs later, I wormed my way into a reporting job with an American news agency’s London office on Fleet Street. They let me loose on the coffee, sugar and oil markets. It was a great job. I’d made it. I even had one of those early mobile phones the size of a clog. And they used to send me to Geneva and Vienna to chase OPEC oil minsters around, or up to Orkney to check out oil terminals. But all good things must end.

No! That sounds like a dream reporter job. I was a journalist myself and the farthest I ever got was Anchorage, Alaska! You were in the hotspots of Europe.
The mighty Reuters was about five doors down Fleet Street in an imposing Lutyens edifice of imperial grandeur, and they paid a lot more. So I talked my way into the world’s greatest news agency as a reporter. I put down roots and spent the rest of my glorious career in the arms of The Baron, as Reuters is known to insiders.I edited millions of words written by hundreds of reporters from all points of the globe. I loved fooling around with their words, supposedly honing them into things of beauty, mostly just hacking them about. Still, it was great fun.

Reuters is the elephant for journalist. So how’d you get from journalist to novelist?
Meanwhile, I was quietly working away at my own writing for the joy of it, biding my time. Reuters was a news factory where words hurtled at you like trucks on a multi-lane highway. It made me yearn for more poetic forms of expression. That said, without a telling story even the most elegant of writing is as – nothing.I wrote ONE SWIFT SUMMER in 2001, touted it around a few London literary agents, to no avail, after which I forgot about it for a decade. Enter Amazon. I got some feedback for the story, which I then re-edited and self-published in Nov 2011. I had no idea what to do next. And so did nothing.

The story sold a fair few copies in its first eighteen months or so, winning some supportive reviews along the way. Then it stuck.

In for a decade, in for life – I changed the title from WATCHING SWIFTS and ditched my DIY cover in favour of something a little more professional.

Meanwhile, I wrote a series of collaborative stories to keep my hand in. I also wrote a second story of my own – IN THE ROOM WITH THREE DOORS – a short tale of three twenty-somethings escaping the succeed-or-die pressures of London for the watercress beds and nightingales of Hampshire.

ONE SWIFT SUMMER also has a London theme, being a story of redemption set in Kew Gardens, where a jaded young war-photographer finds herself drawn into a wistful relationship with an enigmatic guy who can’t stop smiling and glancing at the sky.

While not a long story, ONE SWIFT SUMMER has had a long maturation and, in spite of its title, is not a story to dash through, being unconventional and gently challenging. I hope you will find the outcome artfully enlivening, a nourishing read that will earn and deserve your enduring regard.


What are you passionate about in life?



One Swift SummerAh! Hence … poets rule! The main female character in One Swift Summer is a photojournalist who has worked in war zones. Do you have a similar background or know someone who does?


Yeah, I’ve met people a few people like Emma Saywell, excitement junkies who like riding tanks into dangerous places. War rocks. People love it. It draws many like flies to its total nastiness. It’s the drama, the danger, the excitement, the buzz of death. Some people feel compelled to get up close to smell death, to know war. It’s such a human thing, killing. We have a complex relationship with killing. I was never tempted to seek out bloody doings myself. Tom in ONE SWIFT SUMMER has known blood and death. But he has changed and turned from them. It is no surprise that he finds himself in a garden. In a way he’s an ancient man, a green man like the one the medieval craftsmen carved high up in the fabric of dreams in stone like St Albans Abbey. Emma is a very modern woman with her go-places career and her hi-res camera eyes.


Tell us about the book.

ONE SWIFT SUMMER – formerly called Watching Swifts – is an allegorical novella of about 40,000 words set in London’s Kew Gardens. Nature is the silent voice in the story. She is the ultimate creator, the poet-in-chief, god if you will. She is limitless in her creativity. In ONE SWIFT SUMMER two of her creations are contrasted, the dynamic swifts which spend all their lives on the wing in the blue, positivity in  motion, and the static, defensive monkey-puzzle tree, a violence of vicious daggers. Tom aka Leonardo is the human equivalent of the swifts, while his foil, Parker, the jobs worth who baits him is the equivalent of the dagger tree. On a deeper level there are 14 sonnets stitched into the seams of the story – perhaps they are swifts, too, albeit of a metaphorical swiftness.


Talk a little bit about your experience as an indie author? What got my attention on you was that you had a highly successful giveaway on Amazon recently. I want to know how you did that.


My experience as an indie is a work in progress. I am lousy at all the social media flimflam. I’m a natural born thread killer. I leave a comment. Instant death. You can sense the life drain from the screen. I’ve been on several sites — Authonomy, Writerscafe, Goodreads. And I have two zombie webbies of my own, presently being galvanised back into life, and which has all sorts of radical junk on it. The best aspect of being an indie author to date has been finding some cracking stuff to read, stuff that is really, really good, strong writing, yet writing that will never get an audience because, because, because… We are living in a golden age of creativity. Never in the whole of human history have so many people been able to turn their hands to writing. There is a massive and marvellous outpouring of talent and beauty going on and we are all part of it. Where it will go no one knows. But it won’t be stopped now — of that I am certain. Yes, there is a lot of deadwood in the jungle. But the jungle is a wonderful and beautiful place in which to find oneself, quite magical. Because we are all little synapses in a larger human soul and that soul’s finest instinct is to create. Can we really be part of the same species as warlords and those of a more petty destructivity we are liable to encounter every day of our lives?

Lyndell Williams

Author * Writer * Stoker of Flames


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