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Saturday, May 22, 2010
On Floyd Landis: What Makes Sports and Sports Law Interesting

What makes Sports and Sports Law so interesting is how its controversies frequently serve as a microscope into the human condition. Take the case of Floyd Landis. The cyclist from Amish country in Pennsylvania’s version of the Bible belt had won the 2006 Tour de France, returned as a small town hero, and then was stripped of his title after accusations of doping. Offering his roots as the best evidence of his integrity, Landis spent hundreds of thousands of dollars contesting the accusations, accusing the French officials of anti-American bias: “All day long I heard him shout so loud, crying out that he was framed.”

Now he admits everything, and accuses everyone else in the sport of doing the same.

I almost always get fooled by these folks. Whether it’s Mark McGuire on Sixty Minutes or Bill Clinton pointing his finger denying he had sex with “that woman,” or Colin Powell showing us where the WMDs are hidden, or Justice Clarence Thomas claiming Anita Hill’s accusations were a “high tech lynching.” I just can’t imagine how someone has the chutzpah to look millions straight in the eye and flat out lie. (Larry Craig I never believed.) What kind of skill does it take to be so convincing when inside they must know they will eventually be hoisted by their proverbial own petards? And when will I learn that human beings are so talented at being deceitful?


No one who watched his performance throughout that tour could have believed him from the start.

The best-seller cycling book of all time should be Johann Bruyneel's How I Got Away with it with Lance.

On a related note, it's not as if the incentives to enhance performance aren't there. After all, this remains more true than not, especially:
"This is a very, very proud day for me," said the 115-pound Kvistik, who lost 45% of his body mass during the event, toppled from his saddle moments after finishing, and had to be administered oxygen, fed intravenously, and injected with adrenaline by attending medical personnel. "They say it is physically impossible to ride all of the Tour without drugs, but we prove them wrong this day."

Of course, the NFL is totally clean.

Blogger Ken Houghton -- 5/22/2010 1:57 PM  


You forgot to add Eric Holder and Janet "from another planet" Napolitano's I haven't read the bill yet, but I read about it in the newspaper and it's clearly discriminatory fibbs... If they didn't lie for a living I may be inclined to buy it...

As far as what kind of skill does it take to be so convincing when inside they must know they will eventually be hoisted by their proverbial own petards.. It seems to be a personality trait shared by athletes, celebs, politicians and lawyers... After all, if we can lie and deny long enough, the public will forget or simply loose interest right?


Of course, the NFL is totally clean.
Great line!
And the most recent example is Brian Cushing, the AP's Defensive rookie of the year, who popped positive for a banned substance. The AP took a second vote and Cushing won again... Clearly, the incentive to stay clean is simply not there anymore...

My guess is that if you really want to watch drug free sports, T-Ball and peewee football may be your only remaining options...

Blogger Jimmy H -- 5/27/2010 10:37 AM  

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