SocraticGadfly

June 18, 2021

Needed: Climate radicalism

Joe Biden returning us to the Paris Accords without admitting their actual Jell-o, or "the Squad" accepting his 10 percent of their 10 percent knockoff of the original Green New Deal, while still paying full devotion to capitalism, doesn't get us bupkis on climate change.

Ben Ehrenreich tells the truth, noting that Biden had issued drilling permits before the pause on them, and taken many other half-steps. It's in the larger framework of analyzing a paper co-written by 17 scientists about just how self-screwed we're getting.

Ben even channels his inner Ed Abbey.

As innocuous as it may sound, “growth” should be understood to describe the frenzied ruination of nearly every ecosystem on the planet so that its richest human inhabitants can hold on to their privileges for another generation or two. Rejecting the idolatry of growth means tilting the organization of our societies toward other social goods—health, for instance, and the freedom to exist on a planet that is not on fire. This should not be unimaginable.

Can't be much blunter than that.

He ties this to Biden's pledge of racial "equity" and the issue of long standing of climate justice.

That said, contra "The Squad's" knockoff, Ehrenreich holds zero hope for the future under the current dispensation:

It is of course foolish to the point of derangement to imagine that Joe Biden would consent to any such transformation.

He does end with a glimmer of hope.

(I)t would be just as naïve to believe that current political configurations are any more stable or permanent than the climate, or any less vulnerable to concerted human action. If we do actually listen to the science, then we understand what ghastly futures await us and we know how bold we must be to avoid them.

But, there never was much hope. Ben notes that carbon offset pledges by big companies would require an area more than half as big as the US become entirely forested. (And that ignores that rising temps may lower forests' ability to be carbon sinks.) He also notes that most of the current climate plans rely on aggressive use of the still largely unproven technology of carbon capture.

The original paper is worth its own read. It's "we" is the whole world, including the Global South. Sub-saharan Africa is a ticking time bomb, for example. It looks to face some of the worst problems with climate change, while most of the countries with the world's highest birth rates are there at the same time.

Mass extinctions continue as the nations of the world failed to meet a vacuous 2010 pledge.

That's a vacuous pledge based on UNCC claims that are too conservative. As World Met notes, per Counterpunch, we're almost certain to break 2C. My own prediction is that we've got a 1-in-4 chance of 3C by 2050 and will almost certainly be that high if not higher by 2100. Sadly, though, the author of that Counterpunch piece is a career Democrat bureaucrat at the EPA who claims Status Quo Joe's infrastructure plan is like the Green New Deal.

Biodiversity loss continues, perhaps contributing to COVID-19.

IPCC modeling remains on the conservative side (it DOES, Michael Mann, Katherine Hayhoe and other climate change conservatives), meaning most people don't know how bad it is.

Finally, per Yale Climate, how does equity factor in?

In reality, it makes good talk, but unless Biden's prepared to set aside money to relocate millions of non-rich people who can't do that on their own, especially if they're renters who can't leverage homeowners' insurance in some way, equity doesn't factor in.
 
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At the same time, this is NOT just a US problem. Allegedly climate-woke Europe is not so much; it loves it some biomass burning. I know that Europe doesn't have the same solar power potential as the US, but it's not that far off on wind. And, because of an overall milder climate and other factors, it's less energy-intensive than the US. (We're not the worst, though; that's the Aussies.)

Not only is it not carbon-neutral, but any idiot can see that deforestation affects the environment in other ways. And, there's surely a risk of "better burner" trees that are also relatively fast growers being touted for biomass monocrop reforestation. To some degree, that's already happening, with loblolly pine being planted as a replacement tree in the Southeast. And, it's not "waste wood,"either.

Linked within that piece is another one, from 2015, reminding us that Dear Leader, with his "all of the above" strategy on energy production, came close to going down Europe's road.

Here's your nutgraf, from the main link, about the biomass "harvesting" in the US:

Even if new trees are planted in their place, many studies suggest they will take decades, and in some cases centuries, to absorb enough carbon to “pay back” the carbon debt from burning the older trees. That’s a problem, because scientists don’t believe the world can wait decades, much less centuries, to cut emissions. So at a time when global demand for pulpwood is already rising, the U.S. is already the top supplier, and the world is supposed to be expanding its carbon sinks to avoid climate calamities, the green-sounding technology of bioenergy is pulling even more carbon-rich wood out of U.S. forests.

Exactly. We need radicalism here, too.

Will Status Quo Joe give us that?

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In case you suspected otherwise, Gang Green neoliberal environmental groups aren't going to give us climate radicalism, judging by the Massachusetts chapter of the Audubon Society selling carbon credits to Big Oil companies via the Cal Air Resources Board for trees it (I HOPE) never intended to log in the first place, then getting all butt-hurt when Pro Publica et al started asking questions.

Meanwhile, the CARB itself looks like a gutless wonder in all this. Shock me. California's water sustainability system is almost as loophole-ridden as Arizona regs requiring new residential developments to have a guaranteed 30-year water supply.

And, as the likes of Fancy Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Betty Crocker, Dianne Feinstein, show, California "librulz" are wasted space in national politics, courtesy of a willfully hypercapitalist Cal Democratic Party.
 
===
 
And, while it's nice that a climate-concerned hedge fund has now gotten its candidates on eXXXon's board of directors, remember that the bottom line is the capitalist bottom line for these companies. Engine No. 1 even admits this. Remember, per Einstein, expecting more of the capitalism that got us into this situation to fix it is insanity.

And, per the World Meteorological Organization, that situation, re the target temperature of the Paris Accords' nonenforceable 1.5 C, has a 40 percent chance of arriving in the next five years. Sadly, Michael Mann (along with many of his "climate MSM" fellow travelers) appears to be, not a climate change minimalist, but a climate change "moderate." He, Katharine Hayhoe and others of their ilk are like GangGreen environmental groups. Hayhoe and some others have been political noobs before, including doubling down on attacking those who pointed this out. Like me. Per that link, we could perhaps call them "climate change Obamiacs," who think that singing Kumbaya enough will fix this. It's people like them that lead me to continue to wonder if the James Kunstlers aren't right after all.

June 17, 2021

The shit has hit the fan with the Dallas Mavericks

And, to be honest? The future there is more likely to be fugly than beautiful, IMO, with Rick Carlisle joining Donnie Nelson out the door.

Old NBA fans will remember the old nickname for the team: the MavWrecks. We could be back there, as the shadow of owner Mark Cuban's consigliere, fixer, omerta-whistler, etc. Haralabos Voulgaris, looms in the background.

The implosion has taken all of four days.

To refresh our memory? 

Per the Athletic, and a Dallas Snooze story with the Cuban Sandwich's denial reaction, his analytics guy Bob Voulgaris, a former professional gambler, had pissed franchise player Luka Doncic over the past year and also head coach Rick Carlisle.
 
Now, I had blogged on Monday about how Doncic's dislike of Carlisle was coming out, and how Cuban probably needed to replace him. As for Cuban's rejection of that, I noted the Atlanta Hawks midseason hiring of Nate McMillan. I then tied in that information before doing an update yesterday on where the team stood. That included the Voulgaris meddling.

CBS had a piece with more quotes from the Athletic than the Snooze does. This is the nutgraf:
Multiple league and team sources tell The Athletic that Voulgaris has been the most influential voice within the Mavericks front office since joining the team, either initiating or approving virtually every transaction made over the past two seasons. Those same sources add that Voulgaris has frequently gone as far as scripting the starting lineups and rotations for longtime head coach Rick Carlisle.
So, even beyond his analytics work? Why does he have Bob Voulgaris oing this? Payback? Blackmail?
 
Little did I know then that Carlisle might only be No. 2 on the list of people Cuban needed to fire. Little did I know that Carlisle would NOT be No. 1 on Bob Voulgaris' list of people to fire.

Because next, out, but not by choice? Cuban, at the clear prompting of Voulgaris, shit-canned Donnie Nelson yesterday as Mavs GM. And, per the piece, it's clear that Marky Mark was lying his ass off with his denials of the Athletic piece. Since that piece is behind a paywall, I've not read it, but I wonder if Battlin Bob and the Cuban Sandwich suspected Donnie of talking on background to the website. Or maybe, with his resignation, they thought Carlisle was leaking.
 
And now, today? Carlisle found out he has balls and has resigned. Yes, Carlisle found his balls and went Johnny Paycheck!

 
Meanwhile, the Mavs will likely enter this year's draft without having hired a GM to replace Nelson. Bob Forde's Sportsology is working on a search, but it will take time. Shane Battier is among possibilities but would he leave the Heat? Contra "The Smoking Cuban" at Fansided, no fucking way Danny Ainge is coming to Dallas. Nor is Masai Ujiri. Michael Finley as an in-house promotion is most likely, especially if seen as "controllable" by Voulgaris. And, that means Bob Voulgaris to further fuck things up for Luka's future.

Aside from Jalen Brunson, solid and serviceable at his slot, the Mavs have basically sucked about as much over the last couple of years as before.

Then, there's the matter of free agency.

Most names on this free agent list likely aren't happening. And, that sets aside fans wondering how well Cuban and Donnie Nelson are as free agent whisperers. (Frankly, they still strike me as being used as rich stalking horses by agents and little more.) It also now raises issues of how much Voulgaris is involved with that. And, for that matter, how does this affect their resigning of their own free agents? Tim Hardaway Jr. is the biggie, of course. Josh Richardson will almost certainly opt in on his option and Boban Marjanović ain't going anywhere.

Or with trade recommendations. As in the not-so-unicornish Kristaps Porzingis. And, yes, he put his imprimatur on that one, too.
 
And then, there's the new hot plate matter of a replacement for Carlisle. This has to be someone Luka wants, not just someone Bob Voulgaris wants.

Ever since Magic Johnson got Paul Westhead fired, a year-plus removed from an NBA title, different storye. Especially on free agency. LeBron James wouldn't have finalized The Decision to be Miami if Pat Riley ain't there. The best coaches and GMs know that, too. And, the best players know they know that.

Back to the Mavs.

I previously said, why not look at Jason Kidd? But, the question to be asked now, is would a Jason Kidd look at the MavWrecks? And, if Finley is the GM, would they co-exist as two fellow ex-Mavs players? Would other NBA coaches, like Terry Stotts or even retread Stan Van Gundy, want it?
 
Assistant Jamahl Mosley has already been touted by Woj as well as gotten Luka's seal of approval, anyway. Seems like he has the inside track.  

And NO, Dum Fuqs out there, Dirk Nowitzki is NOT going to be a temporary head coach OR a permanent one. Any Mavs fans dumb enough to believe that Dirk is walking in some door to rescue the team deserve the owner you have, and his Kenny Rogers sidekick. And, no, Dirk's "special consultancy" in GM and coach searches isn't a rescue, unless you're counting the Cuban Sandwich's hopes that this will rescue his self-induced PR clusterfuck.

This all said? A diabolical sidebar. What if Cuban didn't want to fire Carlisle but some part of him "accepted" he'd leave after Donnie Nelson got fired, since Carlisle said he and the Sandwich had been talking back and forth for a week?

Coronavirus, week 62: David Corn has teh stupidz

Supporting the natural angle? Chinese scientists claim to have found a new strain of coronavirus in bats similar to COVID-19 in humans. Sounds good; will you be letting WHO et al look at this?

Yay .... Texas is now all the way up to one-third vaccinated.

A federal judge threw out the Jared Woodfill-filed lawsuit against Houston Methodist as well as throwing out a request for a preliminary injunction, calling it "frivolous."

David Corn, still smoking his conspiracy theory crack, co-blames Putin for the 400K or so COVID deaths on Trump's watch. Putin has much to be blamed for (but the imprisonment of Navalny shouldn't lead us into twosiderism toward a character problematic himself), but this is ridiculous. And, of course, the US is now over 615K deaths.
 
California is unmasking, with statewide vaccination at 66 percent. Capital & Main has more, with the read-through being just like in other states with larger and diverse populations, the population groups with the lowest vaccination percentage are poorer minorities and rural white wingnuts, for generally different reasons.

June 16, 2021

Know when to fold 'em, Cuban: Fire Voulgaris, replace Carlisle

On Monday, I blogged about how I thought Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban, to maximize the potential of Luka Doncic and keep him happy, probably needed to fire head coach Rick Carlisle.

Little did I know then that Carlisle might only be No. 2 on the list of people Cuban needed to fire.

Per the Athletic, and a Dallas Snooze story with the Cuban Sandwich's denial reaction, his analytics guy Haralabos Voulgaris, a former professional gambler, has pissed off Luka over the past year at least as much, and likely far more, than Carlisle, and maybe pissed off Carlisle as well.

Update, later today: Out, but not by choice? Cuban, at the clear prompting of Voulgaris, shit-canned Donnie Nelson. And, per the piece, it's clear that Marky Mark was lying his ass off with his denials of the Athletic piece. Since that piece is behind a paywall, I've not read it, but I wonder if Battlin Bob and the Cuban Sandwich suspected Donnie of talking on background to the website.
 
Update, June 17: Carlisle found out he has balls and has resigned. Yes, Carlisle found his balls and went Johnny Paycheck!

 
(From previous posts, there's signs the "Franchise" has friction, and probably increasing friction, with Carlisle. This Red Satan piece by Tim MacMahon, formerly of the Dallas Snooze and knowing the Mavs, has details.)
 
First, why does Cuban have a former pro gambler in this role? Surely he could have hired someone both better, and with less of an "optics" problem, than Voulgaris. (Well, maybe the NBA doesn't have a problem; see below.) I mean, Cuban was touted nearly a decade ago for being the polar opposite of Phil Jackson and being at the front of the analytics movement. Why does he have Bob Voulgaris doing this? Payback? Blackmail?

Second, on surrounding the franchise with a better supporting cast, supposedly, Voulgaris has been a draft whisperer to both Cuban and Donnie Nelson. Wunderbar. And more. Much more.

CBS has a piece with more quotes from the Athletic than the Snooze does. This is the nutgraf:
Multiple league and team sources tell The Athletic that Voulgaris has been the most influential voice within the Mavericks front office since joining the team, either initiating or approving virtually every transaction made over the past two seasons. Those same sources add that Voulgaris has frequently gone as far as scripting the starting lineups and rotations for longtime head coach Rick Carlisle.

So, even beyond his analytics work? Why does he have Bob Voulgaris, a dweeb with that nerdy Twitter profile pic, doing this? Payback? Blackmail?

Aside from Jalen Brunson, solid and serviceable at his slot, the Mavs have basically sucked about as much over the last couple of years as before.

But, back to point 1. Surely someone in those "multiple league sources" is close enough to Adam Silver that Silver knows the background on Voulgaris and to me, THAT doesn't look good.

Then, there's the matter of free agency.

Most names on this free agent list likely aren't happening. And, that sets aside fans wondering how well Cuban and Donnie Nelson are as free agent whisperers. (Frankly, they still strike me as being used as rich stalking horses by agents and little more.) It also now raises issues of how much Voulgaris is involved with that.

Or with trade recommendations. As in the not-so-unicornish Kristaps Porzingis. And, yes, he put his imprimatur on that one, too.
 
For the man who has said he'd put Luka ahead of his wife, putting not one but two rectal irritants in front of Luka is puzzling indeed. 
 
Maybe it's cheapness, in that a bigger-name new coach might want more money. Ditto for a better, and less tainted, analyitics guy than Voulgaris.
 
Now, Luka's already said he'll sign the full-level extension he's entitled to.
 
BUT —
 
This is a players' league, more than the NFL or MLB. Tom Brady is the rare player who moves on, on his own, and that was only because he insisted that the Patriots couldn't franchise-tag him as part of his last contract pre-Tampa. And, even then, he couldn't get Belichick fired. NO player does that by himself in the NFL.

The NBA? Ever since Magic Johnson got Paul Westhead fired, a year-plus removed from an NBA title, different storye. Especially on free agency. LeBron James wouldn't have finalized The Decision to be Miami if Pat Riley ain't there. The best coaches and GMs know that, too. And, the best players know they know that.

Back to the Mavs.

I said above that the team seems to me to have been used as a stalking horse for leverage by potential free agents. You know, like Albert Pujols allegedly did to the Marlins long ago.

The idea that they'd be taken seriously when they employ TWO people that piss off the franchise? Laughable.

I had suggested, among B-tier free agents, a Will Barton or Paul Millsap since a full season of Aaron Gordon with the Nuggets means one or both of them are expendable. (Barton has a player option.) But would either of them consider the Mavs their first option?

In addition, ESPN points out what many Mavs fans know. His injury history has cut his mobility and

As for coaching?

Beside pissing off Luka, is Rick Carlisle, 2011 ring aside, is the best man to be leading the Mavs in the future. Let's ask it more.

At ESPN, Bobby Marks was handing out receipts on Twitter:
That's why people like me are questioning.

Sadly, the Cuban sandwich has already said "he stays."
 
And, he's wrong. The Hawks, dead in the water a few months ago, replaced Lloyd Pierce with Nate McMillan midseason — and they're not only in the playoffs, they're still playing.

Again, why not look at Jason Kidd?
 
Plenty of Mavs ties. Skill set that might bring new things out of Luka. Could do worse, like staying with Carlisle. 
 
I know luck is a large part of why he's a billionaire, but it amazes me how much stagnancy Cuban allows with his team. It IS a business, after all, and the business is winning. 

One final question, a rhetorical one. Actually, no, it's two.

IF the Athletic story is true:
1. Carlisle, have your balls shriveled so much that you actually put up with Bob Voulgaris essentially being your super-head-coach?
2. Cuban, if Carlisle's balls HAVE shriveled that much, why would you want him?

June 15, 2021

Texas Progressives: Harris, Blinken and Not ... a lot of love for some people

As Strangeabbott still hasn't vetoed a Lege staff pay bill he claimed he would, and we're still wondering if there will be two separate special sessions of the Lege, there's plenty of news in Austin, around the state and beyond for this week's Roundup, so let's dig in.

The Lege

Rethuglicans claim their SB7 Christmas-treed proposal to let judges overturn elections on dubious grounds "just got there by accident." Suuuure. And, beyond thinking Texas Dems and indy voters will buy this, I guess they think their own wingnut backers like them more as anonymous shitweasels.

A Black Republican is looking at running for statewide office. Sit down, Allen West, and no, it ain't him. State Rep. James White says he won't run for for the Lege again but is eyeing other things.

I missed this: Bills to extend the Chapter 313 tax break never cleared the Lege. The Observer has more. Per that piece, I suspect that extending it from the petroleum world to wind farms drew a backlash.

Off the Kuff gives you even more State House electoral data to ponder.

Reform Austin tries to shine a light on the Legislature's lack of transparency.

Texas

Chris Tomlinson et al's tri-authored new book about Alamo legends gets solid, but not uncritical, review praise from the Observer.

Dallas: The vegan capital of Texas. Black Americans and Black Texans. More vegan than you might think. More here.

The real reason Strangeabbott wants to build a Texas wall? The Dreamy Don Huffines, of course.

Trump Trainers tried to drown out Beto in Denton. The Dallas Observer can't stop there, though, and instead fellates his 2018 run against Havana Ted, even though the numbers show Justin Nelson did better against indictee Kenny Boy Paxton, while Danny Goeb and Jeebus Shot Sid Miller had races almost as tight. Otherwise, Strangeabbott had a big win because of Loopy Lupe Valdez and Texas' closest statewide equivalent to a Joe Straus Republican, Glenn Hegar, had an easy win, as did Pee Bush and Christi Craddock. See a pattern? It wasn't Beto being good, it was the clearest wingnut Rethuglicans struggling.

Sanford Nowlin has the Louie Gohmert news you need. 

Grits for Breakfast wonders what will happen to all those old convictions for unlicensed carrying of a weapon.

Catherine Wendlandt disputes a map that claims Houston is not in the South.

Parents of binary children celebrated the use of pronouns.

National

SocraticGadfly offers up his latest installment on what you didn't know you didn't know about Glenn Greenwald, with the still-needed reminder that Glenn never has been, is not today, and never will be, a leftist in any way, shape or form.

I'm sure that Dems will bitch about a Charlie Kirk / Turning Point front group astroturfing for Greens in 2018. To mash up Clauswitz and an old cliché? Politics is war by other means. All's fair in love and war. Ergo, all's fair in politics, so Dems / Dem-tied activities, go astroturf for some Libertarians in 2022.

Will some Rethuglicans, per a Borat song, and per the Jared Sexton backstory on critical race theory being "Marxist" in the end, find a Jew to throw down a well?

The Fed is seriously eyeing a digital dollar to battle cryptocurrencies. Opposed include the American Bankers Association, which calls it an unnecessary panic move. Agreed.

Looks like the New Hampshire Libertarian Party is in the middle of a massive implosion led by Trumpy-thinking types who think Libertarians should support Jan. 6 type movements.

World

Biden and Blinken continue to hate Palestinians.

Saudi Arabia is trying to undercut the UAE as the Gulf's business hub.

Biden and Harris continue to hate Ill Eagles on the one hand more than they're nice to them on the other. Team Biden continues to keep up the Title 42 bullshit, for example.

Kind of like "Florida Man"? Career Man Putin calls Biden a "career man," while slathering praise on Trump. Reality is that both Trump and Biden were/are largely craptacular on foreign policy. Trump a weathervane who pretended to be knee-jerk anti-establishment but wasn't always that much. Biden? The establishment.

This is why capitalism as usual won't address climate change — corporate greenwashing in net-zero pledges.

June 14, 2021

More on the idea of the Mavericks replacing Rick Carlisle

Despite a great effort by Luka Doncic in Game 7, the Dallas Mavericks lost Game 7 to the Clippers and have another first-round playoff exit.

So, what's needed to upgrade?

To go beyond my original post about this, of a week ago? Probably head coach Rick Carlisle.

First, there's signs that the "Franchise" has friction, and probably increasing friction, with Carlisle. This Red Satan piece by Tim MacMahon, formerly of the Dallas Snooze and knowing the Mavs, has details.

First, part two? This is a players' league, more than the NFL or MLB. Aaron Rodgers, no matter how much he wants out of Green Bay and no matter how much he thinks Matt LeFleur made a dumb play call in last year's playoffs, isn't getting management to can his coach. Or his GM. In baseball, yeah, the Rockies GM resigned, but that was six months after trading Nolan Arenado. And Bud Black is still there in the dugout, whether or not he bears any blame for the Rockies slump last year, or 2019.

The NBA? Ever since Magic Johnson got Paul Westhead fired, a year-plus removed from an NBA title, different story to some degree. Especially on free agency. LeBron James wouldn't have finalized The Decision to be Miami if Pat Riley ain't there. That's of course the Riles who replaced Westhead in Westwood.

Back to the Mavs.

First, while Kristaps Porzingis is a fine 2A player, would he a be a full No. 2 on an elite team? Probably not, and that's putting it mildly. He's NOT "The Unicorn." To put it another way, when your coach is praising your "floor spacing," that's a tell. 

In addition, ESPN points out what many Mavs fans know. His injury history has cut his mobility and made him a liability on D.

Tim Hardaway Jr.? A probable keeper, and per many Mavs fans, the actual better piece of the Zinger trade.

But, no real No. 2.

Can you get a more well rounded additional No. 3 in the free agent market?

Like a Will Barton? Or Paul Millsap? A full season of Aaron Gordon with the Nuggets means one or both of them are expendable. (Barton has a player option.)

Now, does Luka plus three or more No. 3 options, BY ITSELF, put this team over at least the first-round top, and preferably, at least a real chance of getting over the conference semis top?

I doubt it.

Most other names on this free agent list likely aren't happening. And, that sets aside fans wondering how well Cuban and Donnie Nelson are as free agent whisperers. (Frankly, they still strike me as being used as rich stalking horses by agents and little more.) 

It also sets aside whether or not Rick Carlisle, 2011 ring aside, is the best man to be leading the Mavs in the future. Let's ask it more.

At ESPN, Bobby Marks was handing out receipts on Twitter:
That's why people like me are questioning.

Sadly, the Cuban sandwich has already said "he stays."
 
And, he's wrong. The Hawks, dead in the water a few months ago, replaced Lloyd Pierce with Nate McMillan midseason — and they're not only in the playoffs, they're still playing.

Or, here's another name, a gent who knows the Mavs, is still semi-friendly with Cuban at least, and who removed himself from TrailBlazers consideration so as not to appear the pet (or a possible tampering investigation focus) of Damian Lillard.

I'm talking Jason Kidd, of course.

IMO, as far as who is realistically on the market, if Cuban swallowed his pride, he's the best realistic option. He WOULD be a change. And, he might get even more out of Luka that Carlisle probably never will. Kidd himself wasn't fast, but he was sneaky fast and had his own change of pace skills.

Donnie Nelson? Not great as a GM, but, in many ways, we know who the real GM is. And, contra the header, he's not selling.
 
==
 
Update: Per the Athletic, and a Dallas Snooze story with the Cuban Sandwich's reaction, why does Cuban have a former pro gambler as his analytics guy? Surely he could have hired someone both better, and with less of an "optics" problem, than Haralabos Voulgaris. 

Oh, and to be snarky, is Porzingis a "non-fungible token"?