I don't buy the everyone was cheating thing. I'm sure there were some who weren't. Or perhaps there were some who quit the sport because they didn't want to be part of the cheating.
As for the death penalty stuff, I don't know about how it's perceived in other countries, but I suspect that a lot of American sports fans might associate the expression, in a sports context, with bans in college sports. As I said earlier, my first association was SMU football, and I'm not that big of a college football fan. The few college programs that were given the death penalty deserved it - but it is still considered a severe punishment.
Barry Bonds was convicted of in the BALCO case). The statute of limitations has run out on a lot of it anyway. But I think it would be better if he faced civil lawsuits, and there's certainly no shortage of people who could sue.
Barry Bonds case is extremely sad. Armstrong never won anything without those drugs. But Bonds it seems clearly had a period in his career when he was this skinny guy ripping out home runs and stealing bases. Many say he was the greatest ever. But he got jealous over guys like Mark getting attention when he knew they were juicing and so made that decision.
So now this guy who could have gone down without drugs as one of the greatest ever, has this kind of rep...What an idiot.
Re Bonds, a lot of baseball players got sucked into the steroid era. It is sad. A key difference is that in baseball, there was basically no testing so considerably fewer players were caught. As for the HoF, eventually they will have to decide what to do with the steroid era players. I think there will be more willingness to vote them a few years down the line and not as first ballot hall of famers, since that is something of an extra honor. Especially if they did have strong careers pre-PEDs, and/or if there's no hard evidence connecting them with PEDs (e.g. people like Piazza and Bagwell). As I said on the baseball thread, what we know now does put a different spin on this commercial, doesn't it?
For all that Bonds is considered a jerk, I don't believe he ever went after people the way Armstrong did.
For many years I actually believed that Armstrong was clean because he so vehemently denied it. Now I know he was just acting and he is still acting.
The biggest problem I have with Armstrong is the way he destroyed people who questioned and even told the truth about his doping. He destroyed their careers and caused a lot of mental anguish to them. He even pressured his teammates to take drugs. They guy is almost a criminal in my mind.
Ita Vash: Regarding the doping in cycling: I want to know the thought process involved in stripping him of his titles but not awarding it to the cyclist who took second place in each race. The report I heard on ESPN was there was so much of this crap going on that they decided to leave the titles vacated. If I was the person who took second place I would certainly want my name to be in the winner's circle.
Not a defense, but I believe that Emma O'Reilly has stated that USPS was not running a clean operation even before Armstrong's arrival, with cyclists complaining that the team wasn't sufficiently aggressive in its commitment to doping . Looks like he simply extended the tradition and took it to new lows; for many cyclists, I doubt much pressure was required.
not so fast. Take a look at the other top finishers in Armstrong's wins and the reasoning becomes clear. And these are just the guys against whom there is concrete proof; others have been implicated in various doping offenses, but do not appear in the graph.
Given that the US Postal Service, a government organization, was a sponsor of Armstrong's team, are there any actions the government can take in regards to this whole mess, aside from perjury or obstruction of justice?
Well investigators are claiming he is still lying about his races in 2009 and 2010, so maybe they can get him for that? They claim the test results from those races show obvious manipulation of his red blood cell count. Would perjury be a potential possibility?
I just want him to hit such a low point that maybe he'll finally realize what a despicable person he is. It's doubtful that'll ever happen, but I can hope.
He pressured his teammates to start taking drugs, and if anyone disagreed with him, he would do everything in his power to destroy that person.
If the #2 guy checked out clean, I don't see why he should not get the title vacated by Lance.
You appear very defensive of Armstrong. Somehow trying to reduce the seriousness of what he did over 10 years.
In contrast Barry Bonds/Roger Clemons its clear they were great, great well before the Performance enhancers.
I would have been here sooner, but the bus kept stopping for other people to get on it. - Sheldon Cooper, The Big Bang Theory
Bek - I'm basing this on the fact that he has not been stripped of that specific title, and also because most accounts I've read don't suggest that he was doping back then. This does not mean that he wasn't, but I'll defer to the experts and the officials on this matter, and until it's confirmed otherwise... he does still have that title. FWIW, he probably couldn't have afforded the best money can buy in banned substances that far back.
I feel that I've been consistent in this thread and earlier, in the cycling thread: I think Armstrong is a jerk. I think he owes apologies and restitution to a lot of people, because his actions in covering up his doping were shameful. I think he has his own agenda that's led to this confession, its content and its timing. I don't think he is the source of all evil and I believe that he has done a lot of good outside of cycling. This does not excuse his actions. But this is more complicated than "Armstrong is responsible for everything that has ever ailed cycling", and there have been worse scandals and behavior in sports.
According to the graph I posted earlier, so many top riders were doping during the Armstrong era (and before it, and after it) that trying to work out who should be the TdF champion for those years is probably an exercise in futility. Therefore, I believe that keeping the titles vacated is a powerful statement and the right thing to do.