I doubt if the whole truth will ever come out. I remember that after the Ben Johnson fiasco in '88, that all the athletes in the sprints had tests (might have been endocrine levels) that were out of whack with what would usually be considered normal. At the time, they couldn't say it was DEFINITELY from steroids, but it was strange that all the runners were so off at the same time. Quite a coincidence.
Track has unfortunately turned into a battle of chemists, etc. in many events. The situation feeds on itself. I've even been suspicious of the distance events since Dr. Rosa suddenly bailed out of cycling during an investigation, and began working with Kenyan distance runners. Their numbers swelled within a year. Are they all on drugs? No. Is everyone clean? Nooooo. How to approach the problem in a manner that's fair to everyone seems darn near impossible. There is no doubt that different federations, countries, condone the drug use by athletes. How does someone from a country, team, playing fair, compete against a group that says it plays fair, points fingers, yet is hiding around the corner shooting up and laughing up their sleeves at the gullibility of the competition? It's deplorable, and so far off from being fixed that I'm not sure it can be in the near future.
Try this analogy on for size. It assumes that the LA Times story was right (I buy it).
You've had a fun night--but not too fun--in a bar. You get in your car and pull out and the cop notices you have a taillight out and pulls you over (Carl Lewis's tests at the '88 OT).
After the requisite hand-eye tests, cop is undecided, so he asks you to blow in the tube. You score an 0.05 in a state where 0.08 is illegal. (Lewis's below-the-threshold results from OT)
After further consideration, the cop lets you go (USOC's decision on Carl).
A couple of years later you're filling out a job app which has all kinds of detailed questions that you have to answer if you want the job. If it says "have you ever been arrested?" would you say yes or no? If it asked if you "have ever been picked up for DUI," would you say yes or no?
I'd bet that with a clear conscience you'd give a "no" to both those questions.
You had a substance in your bloodstream which is legal in one concentration, illegal in another, just like Lewis did. You've got no record, neither does he.
"After the requisite hand-eye tests, cop is undecided, so he asks you to blow in the tube. You score an 0.05 in a state where 0.08 is illegal. (Lewis's below-the-threshold results from OT)
After further consideration, the cop lets you go (USOC's decision on Carl)."
I liked your analogy until you got to the .05/.08 part. Here's how I see the situation:
In 1988, a state cop pulls you over, thinks you've been drinking, and blah, blah, blah asks you to blow in a tube, and you score a 0.08 in a state in which 0.05 is then (1988) illegal.
In the process, the cop discovers that you work for the state as well - and in a high profile positition. But you are still over the limit, and you are informed of the crime you're being arrested for.
You are prosecuted (secretly) and receive a jail sentence that will keep you from doing your job - which is bad PR for the state. So you & your lawyer appeal, and after some of the top brass within the justice system get involved, they let you off, because you didn't realize that there was alcohol in whatever you had been drinking.
Years later, the state changes the legal limit to 0.10. Then someone finds out about the cover-up and leaks it to the press.
So, this is my interpretation (according to what I've read):
At the time, Carl Lewis (and several others) were correctly punished for ingesting substances on the banned list (intent is quite hard to determine - who is going to say they took it for an illegal edge?). They don't, however, inform the IAAF. At the time, the level of the drug in their systems was over the allowable amount. Later, the "powers that be" (who are in the difficult position of both promoting & prosecuting the sport) decide to throw out all the cases, never informing the IAAF.
Later, the legal limit for these substances changed. However, these 100+ athletes all broke the rules in place at the time. This gave them an advantage over other athletes NOT breaking these rules.
Now, we seem to have proof of a cover-up that many people around the US & world had been complaining about for years. So, even when we have proof (apparently) that people were busted for drugs, many people/ostriches still want to put their heads in the hands and pretend nothing bad happened. That's disappointing.
BDG: please read again. Here's relevant parts from LAT article:
<<In three separate tests conducted at the Olympic trials in July 1988, Lewis registered levels of two parts per million, four parts per million and six parts per million for a combined mixture of three stimulants found in common cold remedies: ephedrine, pseudoephedrine and phenylpropanolamine.
DeLoach, tested once, registered a combined level of seven parts per million.
Under International Olympic Committee rules in place then, any level between one and 10 parts per million was subject to further investigation. Under U.S. Olympic Committee rules, that meant evidence proving "sole intention" to dope. The USOC's executive director at the time, Baaron Pittenger, who conducted the investigation, said Tuesday he found no such intent, thus exonerating the two athletes.>>
the key is the 10ppm threshold; if they were over it they would have been automatically charged with doping; under 10ppm they got further scrutiny then were released; jut like the DUI analogy.
You said they were over the limit; they clearly were not.
No matter what anyone writes, and no matter how convoluted the reasoning to absolve King Carl, it's obvious that something was going on. No, wait, nothing was going on. It's just that all of our sprinters get colds when big meets come around, and all at the same time.
I don't know where she got the numbers, but in Sunday's San Francisco Chronicle Gwen Knapp tackles the Lewis issue and reminds us that Linford Christie was busted by the IOC for pseudoephedrine after the Olympic 100 in '88, but was cleared.
The relevant fact, if she's right, is that Christie had twice the pseudoeph. level that Lewis did in his OT test.
So if you're going to keep insisting that Carl's case was somehow a miscarriage of justice, note that Christie needs to be right in there with him. We probably won't read that in any English papers though.
I apologize - based on what's in THAT article, you did indeed make a solid analogy.
However, like many others, I see what's coming out now from USOC, Carl Lewis, and the pro-denial side of things as SPIN. And it's working.
The way they would have us see it (and my smart-ass comments):
-Americans are naturally superior - we don't need drugs for an edge as we've already got it (wait -except for the events where we don't).
-The people who ARE using drugs are the inferior ones - that's why they're taking drugs! (why would anyone expect that the gold medalists & world record holders would be using drugs).
>you're going to keep insisting that Carl's case
>was somehow a miscarriage of justice, note that
>Christie needs to be right in there with him. We >probably won't read that in any English papers >though.
Exactly. Christie is a convicted cheat. Here's one UK writer, while stating who he thinks should actually get the various medals now, doesn't exactly treat Christie with kid gloves. Interesting point about a 3 year rule.
""The rules of the IOC stipulate that no decision taken in the context of the Olympics can be challenged after a period of three years from the day of the closing ceremony," said Giselle Davies, the IOC spokeswoman."
were relevant levels the same under the iaaf/tac rules as they were under the ioc/usoc rules in 88?
>BDG: please read again. Here's relevant parts
>from LAT article:
<<In three separate tests
>conducted at the Olympic trials in July 1988,
>Lewis registered levels of two parts per million,
>four parts per million and six parts per million
>for a combined mixture of three stimulants found
>in common cold remedies: ephedrine,
>pseudoephedrine and phenylpropanolamine.
DeLoach, tested once, registered a combined
>level of seven parts per million.
>International Olympic Committee rules in place
>then, any level between one and 10 parts per
>million was subject to further investigation.
>Under U.S. Olympic Committee rules, that meant
>evidence proving "sole intention" to dope. The
>USOC's executive director at the time, Baaron
>Pittenger, who conducted the investigation, said
>Tuesday he found no such intent, thus exonerating
>the two athletes.>>
If your American or Canadian, If its in your system ... its in your system. Pay the price. To determine intent means the governing body, COA Canada , must have mind reading powers. Just because Laumann calls a press conference and burst into tears, says she had trouble navagating through a drug store and gets a reduced sentence from the COA, I don't buy it. It's like every sport where reaction time needs "enhancing", a lot of the athletes have "colds" when its time to compete. Just stay clean.
>If your American or Canadian, If its in your
>system ... its in your system. Pay the price. To
>determine intent means the governing body, COA
>Canada , must have mind reading powers. Just
>because Laumann calls a press conference and
>burst into tears, says she had trouble navagating
>through a drug store and gets a reduced sentence
>from the COA, I don't buy it. It's like every
>sport where reaction time needs "enhancing", a
>lot of the athletes have "colds" when its time
>to compete. Just stay clean.