Officials should carry their own red cards 

Perhaps we can look forward to a day when leadership owns up and removes itself from further service. And for once, I'm not referring to the San Francisco Board of Supervisors.

You could take the executives at BP or AIG or even the alleged watchmen over at the SEC who snoozed while Bernie Madoff made off with tens of billions of people's money. But since we're playing alphabet soup here, how about the officials who control FIFA, which runs the World Cup, and those running the French Football Federation?

For those keeping score at home, FIFA refused to comment on the referee who blew the call that cost the USA a win over Slovenia, and then had the audacity this past weekend to say that the officiating in the World Cup has been successful. Successful in what - sending players off the pitch with unnecessary red cards and then defending horrible calls?

French newspapers are calling national team players ''mutineers'' after they refused to practice Sunday following the ejection of star player Nicolas Anelka for his tirade against coach Raymond Domenech in the previous loss to Mexico. But it's worth a reminder that Domenech was not the person of choice by players, former or present, or the France fans at home, and only the arrogance of the football federation insisted on putting the round peg on the rectangular field.

The results were predictable. France played uninspired football, many team members blamed the coach, the federation pointed at the players and the whole thing unraveled.

The entire country is now in misery. You can follow the bouncing ball to see if another will join it tomorrow.

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Ken Garcia

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