Charlie Hustle Agonistes


Forget the Code Orange alert.

The real specter haunting the US is the Code Reds threat figured by the nation's second-most famous compulsive gambler: Pete Rose.

As Charlie Hustle brings his trademark hyperactivity and Moe Howard haircut to the press tour for My Prison Without Bars, the real question is not whether Pete belongs in Cooperstown (of course he does). No, the real question is how can we conclude the situation equitably and get on with the rest of our lives? (The Rose case is like a sports version of the Israeli-Palestinian issue.)

Here's a solution proffered by an old friend, Marty Conte of Bloomberg. It has the virtues of workability and it should leave everyone involved happy with the outcome: Tell Rose he will automatically make the Hall of Fame at the time of his death, and then hopefully he kills himself. If that doesn't push him over the edge, bet him he can't kill himself.