April 13, 2003
Before the 2000 Election, Republican Head of Baseball Hall of Fame Invited GOP Operative to Speak on Upcoming Presidential Election. No Democrat Spoke.
BuzzFlash Unearths Second Hall of Fame News Release That Indicates the Head of the Baseball Hall of Fame is a Republican Partisan.
(Before reading this expose on the head of the National Baseball Hall of Fame, read http://www.buzzflash.com/analysis/03/04/12_baseball.html)
A BUZZFLASH BREAKING NEWS ANALYSIS
Third in a Series on the Emerging Partisan Scandal at the National Baseball Hall of Fame
As most sports fans know by now, a Cooperstown celebration of the legendary "Bull Durham" film -- featuring stars Susan Sarandon, Tim Robbins and Robert Wuhl -- was abruptly deep-sixed by Baseball Hall of Fame Honcho Dale Petroskey, a former White House assistant press secretary under Ronald Reagan and perhaps a Karl Rove protégé.
We noted in our last BuzzFlash.com breaking news analysis that Petroskey, who claims he is a neutral museum administrator, had no compunction about having Ari Fleischer speak about politics at a 2002 lecture series sponsored by the National Baseball Hall of Fame (See: http://www.buzzflash.com/analysis/03/04/12_baseball.html).
Now we have been alerted that Petroskey also had Ken Duberstein, a Chief of Staff to Ronald Reagan, speak at a National Baseball Hall of Fame lecture series in 2000. Duberstein's topic: the 2000 elections. Here is the description of the Duberstein lecture from a late 1999 National Baseball Hall of Fame news release: (Link to Press Release)
In fact, Petroskey has not had any Democrats appear at his National Baseball Hall of Fame sponsored lectures. But he has had Duberstein and Fleischer appear at key times that they could influence public opinion. In short, Petroskey seems to be taking the National Baseball Hall of Fame for a bit of a partisan excursion, while canceling an April 26-27 "Bull Durham" celebration abruptly and unilaterally in an outburst of pro-Bush pique.
And Petroskey isn't backing down on his Anti-free speech squashing of the "Bull Durham" festivities, according to an April 12 Associated Press Story:
Petroskey is also claiming that he is being unfairly labeled a Republican partisan, because he worked for the National Geographic for some time. But look at the press release from the National Baseball Hall of Fame announcing his hiring:
In a bizarre irony, just before Petroskey assumed his position at the National Baseball Hall of Fame, the jersey Tim Robbins wore in "Bull Durham" was "retired" to the Baseball Hall of Fame. According to the 1999 Hall of Fame News Release, "The National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum announced today that it has acquired the baseball uniform worn by internationally recognized film actor and director Tim Robbins in the 1988 baseball film classic, Bull Durham. The jersey, pants and stirrups were placed on permanent display in the Hall of Fame's exhibit, Baseball at the Movies, on May 28th."
The news release went on to praise Tim Robbins: "We are delighted that Tim Robbins has made this significant donation to the Museum," said Hall of Fame Chairman Edward W. Stack. "Tim is a world-class actor whose performance in Bull Durham helped to establish that film as one of the all-time Baseball classics. In making this donation, Baseball fans of this and future generations will be able to recount first-hand his star performance as Nuke LaLoosh. It also permanently perpetuates his legacy as a baseball film star."
Of course, as a loyal Republican, Petroskey thinks otherwise.
Petroskey is another Republican operative turning national institutions into vehicles for partisan politics.
If the board of the National Baseball Hall of Fame Board of Directors had any sense of respect for the American Constitution, they should fire the guy right now. But we expect the White House is working the phones to make sure that doesn't happen, as we speak.
A BUZZFLASH BREAKING NEWS ANALYSIS
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See the Following Web Articles:
Bombard the Baseball Hall of Fame
Cooperstown Muffs One
Reagan/Bush Surrogate at Hall of Fame Makes a Non-admittance of Mistake
Sort of PR Meaningless Acknowledgment
Robbins, Sarandon get Rose treatment from Hall of Fame
National Baseball Hall of Fame Welcomes Ari Fleischer
otherwise noted, all original