Rope-A-Dope and the Slippery Slope

Where did the term Rope-A-Dope come from?

Rope-a-dope is a boxing term that is associated with Mohammad Ali since his 1974 fight with George Foreman in what was called “The Rumble in the Jungle”.   The boxing match took place in Kinshasa, Zaire, which is now called the Democratic Republic of the Congo. This was one of Don King’s first professional ventures as a promoter and he was able to represent both Ali and Forman for the same fight, which was certainly a slippery slope for the boxing world.  Rope-a-dope is a method of tiring our a boxing opponent by leaning on the ropes as if trapped and the opponent in thinking that he has the upper hand uses up excess energy as most of the punches are blocked.   It was a strategy that worked quite well for Mohammad Ali, who lured George Forman into attacking him relentlessly for the first seven rounds of the fight.   Forman spent all of his energy as Ali lay on the ropes and in the 8th round, Ali knocked out Forman.

Rope-a-dope has become a common term in other sports like hockey and is also used as a sex term, as slang for pot or crack cocaine, as an expression of stupidity and even used to describe political and business strategies. What I don’t like about the overall strategy is that it actually means taking devastating blows in an effort to outlast an opponent.   It didn’t work for Ali when he met Leon Spinks who didn’t tire and went on to defeat Ali. Did “rope-a-dope” hasten Mohammad Ali’s Parkinson’s disease, which can happen from blows to the head?  Ironic that boxing is known as the “Sweet Science”.

US Government on a slippery slope

If we make any use of the strategy known as “rope a dope”, the downside seems to vastly out weight upside, because people get hurt and it doesn’t always work. Mitt Romney was accused of taking a rope-a-dope strategy in the Presidential debates against President Obama.   You have to beat the champion and Romney should have taken the fight to Champion Obama.   Nokia used the rope-a-dope when it dumped its unprofitable mobile handset business on Microsoft in 2013 and now Microsoft has to make it profitable, which translates to higher consumer costs.

It has been said that the Government has been trying to create an economy by giving bailouts and handouts and a recent blog that I read was titled, “Heading down a Slippery Slope and Government Rope-A-Dope.

Related Article: Headed down a Slippery Slope and Government Rope-A-Dope

The Government is competing with the private sector and winning.   Investors are not putting their money in banks, but in safe places that have higher yields leaving banks with less money and stricter lending requirements. It is more difficult for companies like Static Clean to source the capital needed for expanding its business and thus creating more jobs.  There are many small businesses like Static Clean that have the technology to compete on the world’s stage who don’t want a handout from the government, but want to see the free market systems work. We are on a slippery slope when the size of government continues to grow as the private sector shrinks.

What does the Lone Ranger, the Lone Star State and the Lone Wolf Have in common?

Texas Rangers

Manuel Gonzaullas was born in 1891 in Cádiz, Spain to a Spanish father and a Canadian mother who became naturalized US citizens and decided to settle in Texas. When Manuel was 15 years old he witnessed his only two brothers murdered and his parents wounded when bandits attacked their homestead.   Fourteen years later he became a Texas Ranger. He was one of the most respected peace officers in Texas, which is also known as the Lone Star State. In the 1930’s, the discovery of the Texas Oil Fields create many lawless towns including Pecos and Kilgore. Manuel was often sent alone to tame these lawless towns.   He became known as “El Lobo Solo” or in English, the Lone Wolf.   When news spread about oil being discovered, Kilgore’s population exploded from 700 to over 10,000 residents in just two weeks.

The Lone Ranger was created

Maybe in part due to the popularity of Texas Rangers and the Lone Wolf, a radio show about a fictional character called the Lone Ranger first The Lone Rangeraired in 1933 and it went on to be an enduring icon of American culture. The masked man and his faithful sidekick Tonto rode to right injustice and they operated on a strict moral code. The radio show morphed into a long running television series that lasted until 1957 and was actually ABC’s first bit hit.   In 1983 a new television show called Lone Wolf McQuade made its debut and it was about a renegade Texas Ranger who didn’t necessarily follow the rules as he battled drug kingpins with automatic weapons.   It was a long way from the days of the “Old West”.

Plastics rely on Texas Oil

Today Texas is still known for its oil industry. In February it hit a 34 year high with production at 2.9 million barrels per day and Texas at times has been the second biggest oil producer in the world behind OPEC. Texans can’t refine the oil as fast as it is coming out of the ground.   Many industries flocked to Texas to be close to the oil. The plastic industry depends on oil in the manufacturing of all things plastic.   Many of the plastic bags that you see in grocery stores and department stores come out of factories in Texas.  Many industries flocked to Texas to be close to the oil. The plastic industry depends on oil in the manufacturing of all things plastic.   Many of these factories require static eliminators and static generators to keep the plastic from sticking or jamming in the process and Static Clean provides the static bars and static generators are vital to keeping static under control and machines moving.

The Texas Rangers are still in operation with 150 officers that handle unsolved crimes, public corruption and border security operations. In honor of the Texas Rangers their national baseball team shares the same name. In 1930, the population of Texas was 5,824,715 and today it is more than 26,500,000 residents. You have to wonder if the Texas Ranger known as Lone Wolf ever thought that the Lone Star State would explode as it did to become one of the strongest economies in the United States and the world.

Call Me Crazy!

How many ways can you call someone crazy?   “What are you nuts, kooky, mad, silly, wacky, ape, psycho, bonkers, cracked, delirious, berserk, daft, demented or deranged and I really like fruity and out to lunch”?    While the Oxford Dictionary describes it as a noun meaning: Mentally deranged, especially as manifested in a wild or aggressive way, we really don’t have the same intent when using crazy in conversation with friends and family.

The opposite to crazy is, calm, collected, rational, responsible, realistic, reasonable, sound and balanced. Can we be honest and agree that most of the time we are somewhere in the middle between these two extremes.   Nobody can be totally calm, always rational, completely realistic, always responsible or perfectly balanced, but a happy medium makes life more interesting.   Wouldn’t you agree?

When it comes to ionization, especially in electronics manufacturing, the goal is towards perfectly balanced static eliminators. There is no room for an ionizer to be out of balance or to produce more positive than negative ions. Such a state of imbalance can cause early failure of electronics boards or assemblies or create a situation called “walking wounded”.   This simply means that harm has been done in the form of static electricity discharge (esd) to the device that may cause a latent product failure.   It could be a TV, stereo or any electronics widget that uses sensitive electronics components in it design that is impacted by the esd event. Many Static Clean ionizers such as our Sentinel Blower meet or exceeds the ESD standard for balance.

In life it is also good to strike a happy balance. Call me crazy, but then again aren’t we all?