Mark Cuban, owner of the Dallas Mavericks is an “OG” of Big Tech. He’s also a loud progressive/liberal supporter of Joe Biden and the Democrat Party.
And he makes a lot of money as a result of the NBA’s financial entanglements with the Chinese Communist Party.
Now he’s ordered that the National Anthem no longer be played as part of the pre-game festivities at Dallas Mavericks’ home games.
Cuban doesn’t come out of the “Tech” side of “Big Tech” — Cuban is a salesman who, after getting fired from a PC software retailer in Dallas, opened his own storefront business to compete with his former employer by siphoning off his former customers. Over the course of several years, and after picking up Perot Systems as a customer, revenue reached $30 million a year and in 1990 he sold the business to CompuServe, making about $2 million for himself in the transaction.
Two years later Cuban invested some of that money in a venture with two other Indiana University alums in a business called Audionet, a pioneer in webcasting. By 1998, Audionet had become Broadcast.com. In 1999, Broadcast.com live-streamed over the internet the Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show. During the great “dot.com” market bubble of the late 1990s, with a grand total of $13.5 million in REVENUE, Broadcast.com was acquired by Yahoo for $5.7 BILLION in Yahoo stock — a transaction regarded by some as the worst internet acquisition of all time. Within just a few years of buying Broadcast.com, Yahoo shut the service down.
In 2000, Cuban bought a majority ownership interest in the Dallas Mavericks NBA franchise and has become one of the highest-profile owners in professional sports, especially in politics. Cuban claimed early on to favor libertarian political positions and identified Ayn Rand’s books as having had a significant influence on his political views. But since supporting Barack Obama for President in 2008, Cuban’s public views have been consistently aligned with the liberal/progressive views of the Democrat Party.
So while Cuban is associated with Big Tech from his days as an investor in Broadcast.com, and became a billionaire as a result of the “dot.com” bubble, he has little else in common with the Ivy Leaguers and tech billionaires who came out of Silicon Valley. He’s a salesman without the aesthetic sense of design and functionality as a sales feature like that possessed by Steve Jobs.
His sales persona is pretty much the same guy who yells and screams at the referees and opposition from his courtside seat at Mavericks games. That is the same persona he brought to the table as a vocal opponent of the Trump Administration’s policies, and as a defender of BLM and Antifa during the protests leading to the November 2020 elections.
To top it all off, as the owner of the Mavericks he has now decided that the National Anthem will no longer be played before Mavericks’ home games in Dallas.
Cuban has publicly ruminated over the idea of running for office for many years. During the 2016 election cycle, he made the comment that he thought he could beat both Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump in the upcoming Presidential election. In October 2015, after House Speaker John Boehner had retired and the GOP was split over who should be the next Speaker, Cuban suggested on Twitter that maybe he should run for Speaker since it wasn’t necessary to be a member of the House to hold that position.
Cuban has expressed an interest many times in the idea of running for President, suggesting before the 2020 election cycle that he might do so as either a Democrat or an Independent. In a June 2020 interview Cuban claimed that he had commissioned a poll which showed him with 25% support as an Independent candidate in a three-way race with Pres. Trump and Joe Biden. Cuban ultimately endorsed Biden for President.
So the signs of having an interest in a political career have been there for years, and now Cuban has taken a step to appeal to the woke masses in the Democrat party by banning the playing of the national anthem before games.
This has been going on throughout the season so far but it was never publicly announced. Monday was the first time this season that a limited number of fans were allowed in to watch Mavericks games due to COVID-19 concerns, and the absence was noted in the press. Cuban has publicly supported professional athletes who have chosen to kneel during the playing of the song, telling ESPN last summer:
“If they were taking a knee, and they were being respectful, I’d be proud of them” and that he hoped he would “join them.” He later tweeted, in response to what he called “The National Anthem Police,” that if critics of the nonviolent protest of systemic racism in the United States took issue, then they could “complain to your boss and ask why they don’t play the National Anthem every day before you start work.”
NBA anthem policy states that: “Players, coaches, and trainers must stand and line up in a dignified posture along the foul lines during the playing of the American and/or Canadian national anthems.”
But the policy does not expressly require that the anthem actually be played.
During the NBA’s restart in the Orlando bubble last summer, Commissioner Adam Silver declined to enforce the rule as players began kneeling for the anthem due to protests against police brutality and advocating for social justice.
In the ESPN interview, Cuban said he hoped the league “would allow players to do what is in their heart” when it comes to the playing of the anthem.
“Whether it’s holding an arm up in the air, whether it’s taking a knee, whatever it is, I don’t think this is an issue of respect or disrespect to the flag or to the anthem or to our country. I think this is more a reflection of our players’ commitment to this country, and the fact that it’s so important to them that they’re willing to say what’s in their heart and do what they think is right.
Various reports on Cuban’s decision have all stated that Cuban has declined to answer questions sent to the Mavericks’ Front Office concerning the decision to stop playing the song.
Famously, in a series of charged Twitter exchanges with Texas Senator Ted Cruz, Cuban refused to respond to Cruz’s challenge that he condemn the takeover of Hong Kong by the Chinese Communist Party.
I can say Black Lives Matter. I can say there is systemic racism in this country. I can say there is a Pandemic that you have done little to end. I can say I care about this country first and last and.. https://t.co/URFs41XloY
— Mark Cuban (@mcuban) July 20, 2020
I wonder if he drives a Jeep — the model built in China?