a riposte to Fred: criticising Armstrong a necessity

by crankpunk

Fred sent us a message, under Betsy Andreu’s great article on LA and his ‘Tour of Redemption’ – a phrase that you may have noticed popping up all over the place since she coined it.

anyway, Fred writes:

“Jesus, you sound like a Tea party, it’s just sports! This happens every hour, every day in business, in banking, in politics, in the army, in almost every gym,  24/7, he did it, got banned, just forget about him, do not keep the flame burning, let him slide in to ambliviance!”

ok, not sure what ‘ambliviance’ is but if it’s anything like an ‘ambulance’ i’d happily let LA slip into it.

but the thing is Fred, is that LA is NOT slipping anywhere. Betsy, me, all the people who still have to go banging on about this sociopath have to do so because others keep letting him back in. you see?

CyclingNews and Darren Benson did it. Emma O’Reilly did  it. Cristophe f&*%#@g Bassons did it.

he’s riding in events wearing a Mellow Johnny jersey with World Champion rainbow sleeves. he’s saying ‘well do i deserve the death penalty?’ and boo hooing to anyone that’ll listen. and he’s complaining about being financially crippled.

and no, we’re not just ‘picking on’ LA. get Levi out too, George, Hesjedal, the lot.

if it wasn’t for Betsy and others now pointing out the hypocrisy of LA, the selfishness, the madness, and the fact that this is indeed very much a Tour of Redemption – then where would the counter balance be? you’d just have LA using his still-massive media influence to contaminate the minds of people who lack the faculty necessary to think beyond the daily shopping list and what’s on tv tonight, into thinking ‘gee ya know what? that Armstrong cancer guy ain’t too bad after all…’

here’s something i wrote earlier in the year that i think is pertinent now (written before MacQuaid was deposed, in April):

…regarding Lance Armstrong:  it’s not about crucifying, what happened to him was not the result of a bunch of goodie-two-shoes whingeing and whining and gleefully getting their way in the end, not at all. it’s about penalising those who break the rules and – and this is so critical to the future of racing – about stopping young riders from following them. (damn, i’m so cranked i went into bold!).

where right now is the guiding light in the peloton? in the UCI? in the management? it’s all still full of ex-dopers, current dopers and a governing body that is more concerned with sticking around for a pension and milking the golden teet than anything else.

‘but hey,’ people say, ‘let it go.’ why? so they can win? so the sport becomes their plaything? who is going to push for the real changes we need implemented to rescue the sport? sadly, it seems to be laying right now, that responsibility, on sidelined and isloated cycling bureaucrats, and a poorly organised and rather muddled bunch of normal cyclists, journalists and bloggers (and yes, i am calling myself muddled too, because i do not have all the answers as to what happens next, i just know that something must. and yet nothing is).

so yes, it was right also to go after the biggest cheat of them all – although the biggest, in reality, is up for re-election soon. and yet the sport stands by and twiddles its thumbs, because so many say ‘let it go.’ ‘stop whining.’ ‘shut up.’

and the riders? ‘well, the pressures of being a pro are terrible.’

no really, it's so terrible being a professional athlete...

give me a break.

Nicole Cooke had bigger balls than 90% of the male peloton. Inga Thompson too. on the male side, Graeme Obree, Pinotti, and erm… wait, all those names… escape me…  there may have been more but they may have been too terrified to speak. then all the Cat 1 and other ‘mediocre’ pro guys who were seriously good but refused to cheat to get up a level. all the kids who walked away. balls like KingflippingKong, cos they left the sport they loved or had to opt for a career without the rewards their talent warranted. those that still rode did so because they loved it, but the dopers attempted to humiliate them because they didn’t cheat.

they were derided and forced out.

i don’t like Armstrong the cyclist, Armstrong the public figure, because he cheated, because he destroyed other riders’ careers and those of anyone who challenged him, and because he is the sporting Nixon.

good ol' Lance... i mean, Dickie...

lying, cheating and screwing over anyone in his way is so ingrained in him that he saw nothing wrong in it. his truth was The Truth. any means whatsoever was justified by the end. watch Nixon’s resignation and then LA’s speech on the Champs, and it’s just a mask the Texan needs and Dick is resurrected.

did he warrant ‘destroying’, as many have put it?

Nixon on the Champs…

let’s phrase the question differently – did he warrant having his public persona being exposed for what it was, a charade? did he warrant being stripped of his 7 Tour and other titles? did he warrant a ten year ban from WADA/IOC sanctioned sports? did he warrant having the fortune amassed through committing fraud taken back?

if that’s want you meant by destroying, then yes. without a pause, yes.

it would be great if LA went away and sorted himself out, repaired whatever damage has been done to his loved ones, especially his kids, and if he reached out genuinely to those he attacked so vociferously or donated half his millions to an independent drug test research facility, or something that would just do some good for the sport. but no, he’s knocking on the door again, glibly saying on Oprah that he didn’t call Betsy fat and that he doesn’t deserve a life sentence. hmm.

speaking of 'destroyed'...

go, be good, get healthy, move on, best of luck to him. i wish him as a human no ill will, but his time here is over. along with The Others.

has to be.

________________________

‘has to be’. and yet there he is, on big time TV, still peddling his dope…

 

9 thoughts on “a riposte to Fred: criticising Armstrong a necessity

  1. I think we’ll be on the right side of history when all Lance’s dirty laundry gets strung out on the line. Now, when will hear from the judge re: the Qui Tam? It’s like waiting for Christmas…

  2. Crankpunk,

    Nice post, but I´d appreciate it if you´d give your thoughts on a few things? Your call to kick them ALL out of the sport is a good one, and heard loud and clear.

    Thanks in advance for your time answering these:

    1.) Lance banned for life while the 2014 Giro is going to honor Marco Pantani.

    2.) We go back to get Lance as far back as 1996 or earlier, but leave Indurain alone and refuse to dig up that rock. Is that just?

    3.) Tyler hid behind his MS foundation and yet people generally consider him a good guy and liked his book.

    4.) Floyd Landis potentially earning a TON of money for turning in Lance.

    5.) Betsy Andreu´s husband making money from the US Postal Regime, and then having no problems taking Mancebo on his team and dominating while Mancebo was clearly involved in Puerto, which was every bit as bad as Lance.

    6.) Lance kicked out of the sport, and Johan too (cause USADA can go after Europeans), but then why not go after Riis? Why stop with Johan? Did Bjarne have a Postal-style system or did his teams race clean, but crush other doping teams?

    7.) Many ex-Postal riders continuing to do Gran Fondos and camps and rides and make clothing when they too cheated?

    8.) Where are all the “clean” pro riders from that era and why aren´t they more upset and demanding their prize money back?

    I understand your ire and share it, most of it, save for you being okay with Betsy Andreu or anyone that had anything to do with Postal and making money from that. But given the current climate, don´t you think there is a case to be made for Lance and Johan getting a second chance? And if you don´t think so, then how can we all not clamor for them to ALL be kicked out? My own opinion is to make sure no dopers ever have anything to do with cycling again…but if not, I think Lance deserves what the Puerto guys got..2 year ban, reduced public opinion, but that´s it. If it was fair for them, then it is fair for them. And Tommy D, Zabriskie, Frankie Andreu, Tyler and Floyd and the like can all rot in hot climates below the earth´s crust.

    I really do appreciate your time and enjoy your blog. Best of luck. And thanks again.

    Johan (har har)

    1. hi Johann, thanks for the comment. well on just about all of this, i’d suggest you trawl through the ‘dopepunk’ category on here and you’ll fond that i do comment on just about everything you mentioned. i do believe Riis should be out, JV, anyone that doped, think that Levi and George should not be around making $, was not happy with Tyler and his book nor his speech at that American bike store, am tired of ex-dopers turning up on PT and Pro-Conti teams, i do think that the sport needs to go right through its history and deal with cases like Big Mig’s and others, can understand the love for Marco but think it is a reflection of the lack of education and the terrible history of the UCI and indeed just about every nation’s cycling authorities in regards to tackling this crucial issue, bemoan the fact that these old ‘star’ are still lauded as heroes, am very much on the side of non-doping former riders who get no attention and think it is they who should be giving talks on doping and be brought back to manage teams and coach, and as far as Betsy and Frankie are concerned i can separate the two because of Betsy’s continued stance against LA, and Frankie and what he got up to is another matter. Floyd should not be making a bean either.

      i am currently looking into the viability of a non-doper Gran Fondo to help raise the issues concerned here too.

      the problem with writing articles about these issues is that it is impossible to mention all these points every single time, i do have a day job and am also training. but the body of work that is on this site responds to just about everything you mentioned. hope that helps.

      1. and as for the clamor to get them all kicked out – this is my little contribution to that. i’m not a bureaucrat, nor a team manager, not a Pro Tour professional, just a guy who loves this sport and wants to see education being offered to young cyclists and mechanisms put in place to more effectively deter those who might cheat, and to effectively punish those who will cheat anyway and are caught. right now we have none of that. and either we listen to these people who say ‘get over it’ and ‘move on’, or we keep up with this rather dull and monotonous task of calling for change and reminding people why this matters.

        the motivation to do this comes not from bitterness nor a pettiness of the mind, but from passion, from a love for what sport is meant to be. cos when you do it right and when you do it clean, it is one of mankind’s greatest contributions to this thing we call ‘us’. evolution does not end with the physical, it continues with the mental.

        and right now, to all intents and purposes, looking at a world in which bankers and chancers can cripple a society and escape scot-free, in which talentless celebrities and talk show hosts are paraded as the philosophers of the age, and in which, looking at professional sport, it seems that cheaters do in fact win, what else can you think but that our collective mental development has ground to a profound halt…

      2. Thanks for taking the time to respond, CrankPunk. I will check out those posts. In the meantime, great blog. And keep up the anti-doping spirit. I hope people keep reading what you have to say.

        Cheers,

        Johan

    2. 1.) Lance banned for life while the 2014 Giro is going to honor Marco Pantani.

      Marco was banned for life. Now he’s dead and may return to competition.

      2.) We go back to get Lance as far back as 1996 or earlier, but leave Indurain alone and refuse to dig up that rock. Is that just?

      Indurain has the IQ of a lost goat, but is a sweet guy and everyone feels sorry for him.

      3.) Tyler hid behind his MS foundation and yet people generally consider him a good guy and liked his book.

      Tyler had an MS foundation? News to about 99.9% of humankind,

      4.) Floyd Landis potentially earning a TON of money for turning in Lance.

      Lance fucked him first.

      5.) Betsy Andreu´s husband making money from the US Postal Regime, and then having no problems taking Mancebo on his team and dominating while Mancebo was clearly involved in Puerto, which was every bit as bad as Lance.

      Yeah right. Like some kid steals a loaf of bread in depression-era Chicago is a criminal the same as Al Capone.
      6.) Lance kicked out of the sport, and Johan too (cause USADA can go after Europeans), but then why not go after Riis? Why stop with Johan? Did Bjarne have a Postal-style system or did his teams race clean, but crush other doping teams?

      Not many people know Bjarne is part of the Danish Free Masons, who run the world.

      7.) Many ex-Postal riders continuing to do Gran Fondos and camps and rides and make clothing when they too cheated?

      Again, someone can steal a loaf of bread, but they are not the same as Al Capone. Not “same-same.”

  3. Crankie, I am no LA apologist, but I think something was misunderstood. Lance muffed his words, but if you play it again I think you will see he tried to make an analogy. He did not want to refer to the hospital itself, but said ( iforget hus exact words) “she says I called her lazy fat bitch, where I actually said fat bitch”, – an extremely ill conceived analogy which meant ” some of what she said may be true, but not all” . He should not have used an analogy based around her which risked confusion but he muffed his words I think, and did not intend calling her fat, only illustrating the difference between things said and remembered.

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