First Cupcakes, Now Ice Hockey

I labor long and hard to shine a light of reason on Pittsburgh's technology economy, and what gets traction? Cupcakes, and now ice hockey.

Check out Michael Berube's comment on Siva's post, crediting me with inspiring the Rangers' win over the Sabres in Game 3 of their series. Above all other things, academics live to be cited, but to be cited *and* to be credited with influence -- especially in a field in which I have ackowledged in print that I'm a complete neophyte -- this is incredible. Believe me: I'm going to tell my Dean!

Since my status as an Allegheny County resident compels me to conclude that that the Rangers win was an aberration, I might as well also point out that Pittsburgh, home of Jagr's former employer, all but invented the industrial proletariat. One might even say that but for brief interruptions occasioned by the Steagles (NFL, 1943), and the premiere of Striking Distance (Columbia Pictures, 1993), western Pennsylvania, like western New York, has been a locus of a continuous and authentic class struggle since the latter part of the 19th century. Professor Berube attempts to distinguish the Sabres (and, by implication, the Penguins) by situating the Rangers in modern critical Marxism, citing their authorship of a recent study of the 1980 Soviet hockey team. Yet that study overlooks Jagr's complicity in the decline of a Pens team coached by Herb Brooks, the same Brooks who led the Americans to their triumph at Lake Placid. The implication should be clear: Tretiak or no Tretiak, the triumph of the proletariat was historically inevitable. (The commentary attributed to Al Michaels was, accordingly, unjustified hyberbole.) The attempt to displace responsibility onto the shoulders of the Soviet bureaucracy is inaccurate. Sabres in 5, but of course I'm pleased to have made Professor Berube's blogospheric acquaintance.


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Pittsblog 2.0 is written by Mike Madison, a law professor at the University of Pittsburgh. Send email to michael.j.madison[at] Mike also blogs at, on law and technology. Chris Briem of Null Space drops by from time to time.

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