Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Something to Keep in Mind When a New Fed Chair is Named

There is an urban legend that the late former major league pitcher Dock Ellis pitched his June 1970 no-hitter for the Pittsburgh Pirates, while he was on LSD. The legend was fueled by Ellis, himself, who was a colorful character and, indeed, was heavily into drugs and drink while playing major league baseball.

However, ESPN's Outside-the-Lines reported:
Tony Bartirome, a former Pirates trainer and longtime friend of the pitcher, is skeptical. "Dock only gave up one hard hit that night [of the no-hitter], on a ball fielded by [Pittsburgh second baseman Bill] Mazeroski," he said. "He might have said that just to jerk somebody off."
Ellis [said Timothy] Leary -- a former Harvard psychology professor who championed the use of psychedelic drugs and once played a softball game in Mexico while tripping -- had been interested in researching the effect of LSD on professional athletes. The professor had approached the pitcher: Would Ellis take a tab of LSD, play, and then report on the experience?[...]Problem No. 1: Leary biographer Robert Greenfield said the anecdote is almost certainly bogus because, in 1970, Leary was locked up in a California prison on a drug conviction and didn't escape until September
But some years after the no hitter, an article in High Times reported that Ellis was,indeed, on LSD during his no hitter and that he saw a comet tail behind his pitches and a multicolored path to the catcher. Not to be outdone by HT, NYT claimed that Ellis saw Nixon behind the plate, calling balls and strikes. .

Thus, when the nomination for the Federal Reserve chairmanship is announced and NYT reports on how brilliant the nominee is and how great that person's ability is, to manage the economy down to the exact number of unemployed homeless in San Francisco's Tenderloin district, keep in mind they have told these kind of LSD fantasy stories before.

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