I don't completely agree with your assertion that track and field "is in the toliet precisely because of BALCO." Is it possible that BALCO is not the cause of our sport's problems, but represents more of a window looking into a history of rampant drug use in track and field? Is it not also possible that instead of BALCO being a cause, it is actually more of a symptom of a much more widespread disease that has stricken not only track and field, but all sports? The issue of doping needs to be brought under control at some point. I'm of the opinion that it may be a mistake for us to collectively take the position that BALCO is solely responsible for the state of track and field. Doping in sports is certainly about more than the athletes associated with BALCO.
Excuse me, I have some news about performance-enhancing drugs. May I borrow your internet site because I need to make a point that there are lies, cover-ups and misleading statements made by some athletes and coaches - information which, if left closed and dust-covered, will do more harm than good to your readers?
I have public-use information, gh, about athletes and coaches who, themselves, have bankrupted fans of their ability to fully celebrate the harmony between pure hard work, willpower, determination and the resulting excellence which ensues from that accord. Shall I leave it up to fate to bind together the past with the future?
These people owe back more than they have been willing to pay, and discussions about their misdeeds - many of which have gone unpunished - keep bringing you down people:s necks - clutching and gripping as hard as you think you can flex. If posters are made aware of these misdeeds, and act upon them, they can be better equipped to enjoy the sport. If that mechanism of communication is silenced - if that channel of influence is broken - fans will lose more than they will gain.
There are a few rotten apples in the basket. Instead of chucking them out and looking through the bunch for better ones, I:m telling folks how to avoid believing certain apples are good to eat so that they won:t bite into them and taste a deep, sour and utterly bitter fruit.
gh wrote:If there are negative developments to be discussed, they should by all means be discussed. Wouldnt' have it any other way. But when there is nothing happening on that front and a small group of zealots decided to hijack the Board with nonstop drug talk, I draw the line. It's doing nothing to clean up the sport and only serves to further depress fans who are already becoming marginalized. We need things to build the sport, not tear it down.
For some reason, gh, you want to be mysterious about the state of affairs as they relate to athletics. Your tight grip on doping talk is what is turning people blue, and nobody thinks you:re doing it just because you:re such a nice guy who:s trying to keep fans focussed on the positives in the sport. So, instead of pretending as though someone is hijacking your board (I:ve spent more time discussing what is great about this sport, its fans, its participants, and the the athletes than anything else), let people here on the true reason why you feel like shutting them out from this topic.
This little big word BALCO doesn:t seem to ever die out or go away. There are steps being taken on this front every single week, and news items which are first-cousins with athletics. A small army is marching toward certain individuals for their involvement with that company, and I:m merely a messenger who sees the footprints, hears the heavy wheels turning, and had never had his head down in the sand.
You don:t have to wallow in the muck, because there are few dirty waters outside your front door, and there is no leak in your roof. There are so many positives being discussed about the wheels which turn this sport forward into a greatly anticipated future full of promise, hope and excellent human potential.
I don:t work at a convenience store, so you must be talking about someone else who is open 24/7 for drugs discussion. As far as having dialogue about drugs with respect to BALCO, this discussion is right where it belongs - in a BALCO thread not initiated by a zealot - or provoker, if you will.
I:ve used the word BALCO in 107 posts of which the great majority involved drugs topics - many of which arose from Michael Johnson stating it would be better if Marion Jones quietly went away. I have posted information on Marion Jones a total of 187 times. These 294 posts represent a grand total of 0,026% of my total contribution to this place. I:ve used the word "doping" in 145 posts between those two aforementioned topics.
(oops - was more chatty than I thought - my math was off -- now up to a whopping 0,026%).
Last edited by EPelle on Sun Dec 31, 2006 1:17 am, edited 1 time in total.
gh wrote:And while these things touched only 0.0001% of anybody who ever visited the island
gh, I agree with most all of what you say in this post (lord knows I am the rose-colored glasses-wearing naive Pollyanna of the board), with the vital exception of the above excerpt. We are ALL - 100% - affected by the PEDs issue. There may be only a few murders on the island, but the killer is still at large and could strike again at any moment.
I totally agree that we should should accentuate the positive and downplay (since we can't eliminate) the negative. Perhaps the obvious solution is to leave the Dope Board open and not allow any PED-related posts on CE. That way those posters who don't want to deal with it can leave that board alone (wishful thinking - some of my 'worst' posts were over there defending Marion . . . sigh).
Anyway, it's almost a new year and let's hope for the best and I will try mightily to leave my reservations behind and 'celebrate the best sport on the planet.'
P.S. The best place to start on VC's credibility is the 20/20 piece he did. It's filled with problematic statements, including his famous, "I want to be the guy who cleans up the sport."
gh is trying to run a magazine and has his personal portfolio to consider.
i suspect gh has an abundance of insider information gained through trusted relationships formed over many years in the sport, some of which is not published here or maybe anywhere...
if the information presented on the track and field forum gets too hot that might potentially compromise gh and his relations in the track world?
maybe that's why gh has this over-reaction with drug issues here.
you can't avoid politics no matter what.
maybe gh's saddam iron type grip is why this forum is a distance second to the poorly presented but highly used letsrun site.....actually track and field news is in danger of becoming an internet non-entity given that poor quality competition is beating them up...
could it be gh censorship???
hey, that's not a rock and roll, metallica attitude now is it.
How did VC "twist the truth to benefit himself"? The truth is the truth. VC may know more about the truth than he has revealed publically, but much of what he stated on 20/20 in 2004 has turned out to be correct. I'm of the opinion that the BALCO story is only at half time and it's a bit early to predict how many more athletes will end up being indicted in the case. How many here on this board would have predicted that the female cyclist would be indicted for perjury more than three years after the case started? Who knows if the more than 100 names of MLB players who tested positive in 2003 will be identified before it's all over. tafnut, BALCO may just be a never ending story.
Up until the 20/20 airing, he had vehemently denied supplied giving drugs to athletes - on the 20/20 show he most certainly DID say he supplied drugs to athletes. You tell me; does that sound like a guy who has a problem lying?
His attorney then filed a motion to quash and dismiss following that "testimony" - along with statements he made to Novitsky suppressed as it would incriminate Conte in his legal case.
It was called a motion to dismiss for prejudicial pretrial publicity, believe it or not. He was a man shaking a stick at the judicial system.
Defendants argue that pretrial publicity in this case has made it impossible to receive a fair trial. Defendants renew their claim that the government is responsible for the leaks, and, because of the publicity, ask the Court to dismiss the indictment in order to protect their Sixth Amendment rights. The government argues that the case law supports continuances, careful voir dire, or a change of venue to deal with pretrial publicity, instead of dismissal. As discussed above, the defendants have presented no evidence in support of their claims that the government is responsible for providing sensitive information relating to the case to the media. With regard to pretrial publicity generally, courts have found that defendants may demonstrate actual or presumptive prejudice.
I think the entire "20/20" show was his believing that he was going to get congressional help to stay out of prison, so there were no repercussions to Conte in his mind. No one knows what Jones got - if anything - from him. He certainly didn:t go under, as his company is still making millions for him today, and continued doing so (generating revenue) when he was sent to day care.
Feds went after the wrong people to begin with. They made this a United States v Victor Conte affair, rather than funnel down to Conte and others like him - it would be remiss of one to believe there are not others - from the top, wherever that may begin. BALCO had a small supply of Arnold:s good stuff. Who else did? No one quite knows yet, and may not ever if Arnold says nothing. Right now, the only reason he would do so would be to get back at athletes who made money while he got the rap sheet. That, however, would be bad for business - legit or not.
It's my opinion that you may be wrong. It was NEVER REPORTED that VC said he did not give athletes drugs. What WAS REPORTED was that he said that he did not tell the feds that he gave any athletes drugs on the day of the infamous BALCO raid. In short, what VC said was that he DID NOT SNITCH on any athletes as was written by the agents in their reports. What VC publically claimed was that the agents FABRICATED the alleged confession in their reports. There is a big difference if you really take the time to think about it. If VC had really provided evidence against the athletes, then he would have likely testified against them and the athletes would have been charged as part of the steroid conspiracy. VC apparently DID NOT co-operate in any way with the feds and after three months of his unwillingnes to co-operate, the feds then dragged in all of the athletes involved and gave them immunity to testify against VC. If VC had actually rolled on the athletes, it would have been a much different story. It seems to me that VC fell on the sword, so to speak. tafnut, are you beginning to understand the logic of the facts in the case? If VC had provided evidence against the athletes and been willing to testify, then the athletes would have never been required to testify against him before a grand jury. There would have been a deal from the get go. There would probably never have been a need for a grand jury. The athletes would likely have also been charged with a crime if the feds had received the co-operation of VC. Once again, it seems to me that VC has been congruent with everything he has stated publically.
In federal court, Victor Conte pleaded not guilty. But on national television Friday night, and in a first-person story posted on a magazine's Web site, the alleged mastermind of the BALCO sports doping scandal seemingly confessed to the chief crime of which he is accused - - distributing the undetectable steroids known as "the clear" and "the cream" to some of the world's greatest athletes. In his interview with the ABC program "20/20," and in a bylined story in ESPN the Magazine, Conte claimed he had provided banned drugs to a long list of elite athletes, including track and field superstar Marion Jones, world record sprinter Tim Montgomery, former NFL linebacker Bill Romanowski, British sprint champion Dwain Chambers and sprinter Kelli White of Union City.
Conte's alleged truth-telling made for interesting television, but it was contested by Jones, winner of five medals at the 2000 Olympics in Sydney. In public statements, Jones insisted that she never used banned drugs; on Friday, she released a statement suggesting she would sue Conte for defamation over the "20/20" show.
Dick Pound, head of sport's World Anti-Doping Agency, told the Associated Press he would work to take away Jones' medals if Conte is telling the truth.
Conte's televised confession could undercut his legal defense to the 35 federal charges he faces, which include conspiring to distribute steroids, money laundering, fraud, possession of human growth hormone and steroids for sale, and possession and delivery of misbranded drugs. If convicted he faces a prison term and hundreds of thousands of dollars in fines.
Up to now, Conte has contended he is not guilty of the crimes, claiming government investigators lied when they said he had confessed to giving drugs to elite athletes.
You (or he) can try to spin it any way you want, but his version of The Truth adapted to his circumstances. Do you think there's anyone in this mess that thinks that VC has 'told the truth, nothing but the truth'? No.
tafnut, Conte stated the government lied about him confessing to them.
I believe he is telling the truth in the matter only to the exact degree of which his deal was considered lawful, agreed upon and signed by Judge Illston - in addition to CAS rulings based upon Conte:s statements and others statements in concert with his own.
Marion Jones lack of action on the ESPN story - which was as damning if not more due to its re-usability as a printed material - can be construed as a silent telling sign that Conte was right...she never challenged that story, and she sued him for defamation only for the "20/20" story! She couldn:t have run out of things to argue - her defamation case was against his "lies and character assasination" brought forth by the "20/20" show - something which her attorny Nichols re-itered to Miles O:Brien on CNN the day following their public disclosure to go forth with the lawsuit. Nothing on the ESPN article, and it has never been retracted, no mention of it by anyone in her party... it:s as if it was magically overlooked - not even there.
Conte had his Marian (sic) Jones v Victor Conte case rescheduled until after USA v Victor Conte could conclude, as he didn:t want testimony in her case to make its way to his case whereby he could incriminate himself. Everyone thinks Jones walked off easy, and no one thinks about the fact that Jones had just as much at stake with Victor settling: Testimony used against him could also, if it were found to be true, could cause her to take the stand in a USA v Jones perjury case.
There are two issues here: whether Conte admits to providing drugs, and whether or not he felt the need to tell the feds about - despite the attention he brought on himself.
The New York Times posed the question to Conte:s attorney:
''Victor Conte adamantly denies giving up any names of any athletes, period,'' Robert Holley, a lawyer for Conte, said in a telephone interview.
Asked whether Conte had admitted or denied providing prohibited performance-enhancing substances to athletes, Holley declined to comment.
Giambi said, ''I'm not worried about it.''
We know what later happened to Giambi.
From that ESPN article:
It's been widely publicized that I confessed.
I want to say, straight up, that's a lie. The lead IRS agent, Jeff Novitzky, divided a page into columns and wrote "Track," "Baseball" and "Football" across the top of each. Then he mentioned some names. I said something like, "Yeah, I worked with that person." I even mentioned a few he'd missed.
But what came out in the press? "Victor Conte said he gave The Clear and The Cream to all 27 of these athletes." An absolute lie. I've never met Jason Giambi or his brother, Jeremy. I've never shaken their hands. I've never talked to them on the phone. Why would I tell a police officer I gave drugs to somebody I've never met?
Then Novitzky asked me, "Victor, would you be willing to wear a wire and help us collect evidence on other people, like physicians, coaches, chemists, athletes, etc.?" My answer was, "Absolutely not." That interview is not in any police report, anywhere. Isn't that amazing? It's like it never happened.
He actually didn:t, because he settled a defamation lawsuit. What did the feds have on him then? The whole circus show turned into a he-said, she-said, with him saying too much, and none of it being truthful according to Jones team. Illston never heard the case, and no law was broken insofar as the interview vanished with the settlement. Feds had nothing to go off of by the television show.
We must obviously be talking about two different things, becauser he pled 'not guilty' to 'everything', which including supplying PEDs to athletes and then he went on nationwide TV and said he DID provide PEDs to Marion and others. Here's my favorite part:
Conte asserts the use of performance-enhancing drugs is essential to level the playing field. "It's not cheating if everybody is doing it. And if you've got the knowledge that that's what everyone is doing, andthose are the real rules of the game, then you're not cheating," he tells Bashir in the "20/20" interview.
a. completely amoral - and simply doesn't know any better. Most habitual liars are amoral.
b. Knows it's against the rules and decided that he was above the rules (delusional). In this case he's dangerous, because he has no problem breaking the law.