Thanks a lot, USADA: Lance Armstrong faces the loss of his seven Tour de France titles

posted at 1:11 pm on August 24, 2012 by Erika Johnsen

And now for something completely different! Well, maybe not completely different — like the many within our festering federal government, this is yet another instance of an unbridled power-tripping bureaucracy run amok — but as a huge cycling fan, this is one of the few sports-related contributions I can make, and the Erika Johnsen Rage Machine is running on all cylinders.

I am all for trying to keep athletics of all sorts clean and drug-free, if the arbiters of the sport so desire (whether or not there’s actually a lot of wisdom in banning supposed performance enhancers is a whole other rich debate, but I won’t go there). It’s a tough job, being the doping police, and trying to keep an even playing field in a world full of ever more innovative doping techniques is a constant battle. Cycling in particular has a long and infamous history of anti-doping crusades — probably because cycling, more than being about hand-eye coordination or other such skills, often comes down to who can simply suffer the longest and the hardest.

There are various international governing bodies that regularly test the riders and enforce doping policies — and again, I’m okay with it. But a years-long, repeatedly meandering witch hunt against a man that never once tested positive on a drug test while active in the sport, borne of stale allegations from vengeful or scapegoating former fellow riders, after a federal grand jury criminal investigation failed to nail him? That is something by which I absolutely cannot abide.

Lance Armstrong has already been retired from professional cycling for a couple years now, but that hasn’t stopped the fishing expedition against him. There are plenty of Europeans who resent him simply for being a stellar American champion (Heh. ‘Murika.), bitter members of the cycling community with axes to grind, and an anti-doping coalition on a mission to prove some stupid trumped-up point. The guy just hasn’t been able to enjoy his retirement. At some point, I’m sure the relentless inquisition starts to take its toll — and last night, Armstrong announced that he would no longer fight the ongoing case against him.

There comes a point in every man’s life when he has to say, “Enough is enough.” For me, that time is now. I have been dealing with claims that I cheated and had an unfair advantage in winning my seven Tours since 1999. Over the past three years, I have been subjected to a two-year federal criminal investigation followed by Travis Tygart’s unconstitutional witch hunt. The toll this has taken on my family, and my work for our foundation and on me leads me to where I am today – finished with this nonsense.

I had hoped that a federal court would stop USADA’s charade. Although the court was sympathetic to my concerns and recognized the many improprieties and deficiencies in USADA’s motives, its conduct, and its process, the court ultimately decided that it could not intervene.

If I thought for one moment that by participating in USADA’s process, I could confront these allegations in a fair setting and – once and for all – put these charges to rest, I would jump at the chance. But I refuse to participate in a process that is so one-sided and unfair. Regardless of what Travis Tygart says, there is zero physical evidence to support his outlandish and heinous claims. The only physical evidence here is the hundreds of controls I have passed with flying colors. I made myself available around the clock and around the world. In-competition. Out of competition. Blood. Urine. Whatever they asked for I provided. What is the point of all this testing if, in the end, USADA will not stand by it?

As Armstrong goes on to say, the USADA (largely funded by your tax dollars, by the way! Yippee!) has been nothing but a bully throughout this entire ludicrous affair. They’ve violated their own 8-year limitation with their 17-year-old charges; the Union Cycliste Internationale and USA Cycling have ordered them to quit their investigation; they’ve done a lot of shady deals with vindictive characters; broken their own rules and willfully operated outside of their jurisdiction; and have obviously made Lance Armstrong into an especial target. Nobody in the cycling world receives more scrutiny than a multi-win Tour de France champion, but once the USADA decided to punish him, they just couldn’t let it go.

U.S. Anti-Doping Agency Chief Executive Travis Tygart said late Thursday he was still waiting to hear directly from Armstrong but added that the cyclist’s decision not to proceed in an arbitration process will leave Armstrong stripped of all of his Tour titles and 2000 Olympic bronze medal and result in a lifetime competition ban. …

Armstrong’s attorneys asked a USADA attorney to turn the matter over to UCI, the international cycling union, but USADA maintains it retains jurisdiction to strip the titles.

Armstrong never tested positive for performance-enhancing use during his decade-plus of Tour races.

I’m not at all sure that the USADA actually has the authority to unilaterally declare that Armstrong is stripped of his titles and banned from pro cycling, but the UCI says they’re going to wait for the detailed case from the USADA before weighing in.

Unforgivable, USADA. Again, I’m all about doping controls, but maybe you guys should think about a cost v. benefit analysis before you absorb everybody’s time and resources with an inquest that’s thin on evidence and ripe with malice. The world of cycling is always looking for ways to bring in a larger American audience to help grow the sport and keep the industry vibrant, and Lance Armstrong has accomplished more for that goal than anyone else — ever.

Armstrong isn’t even one of my personal favorite cyclists, and I don’t actually buy it that he’s quite the squeaky-clean, innocent victim he’s proclaiming himself to be, but I clearly remember watching him on television, struggling up steep summits and whizzing down tricky descents, through the mountains and over the fields, in wind and rain and scorching sun, for three weeks, over seven separate months of July, with nothing but pain and hard-man focus on his face. As far as I’m concerned, he won those Tours. Stripping him of his titles is only going to disenchant potential fans even more and contribute to the stigmas against cycling.

So congratulations, USADA. I hope you’re feeling really great about yourselves and everything you’ve accomplished right now. Really awesome job.


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No evidence, never tested positive.

Witch hunt.

rickyricardo on August 24, 2012 at 1:13 PM

This is yet another consequence of liberal governance. I’m surprised that the USADA didn’t want to give six of his seven medals to women, blacks or Latinos.

Elections don’t have consequences…electing liberals has consequences.

cajunpatriot on August 24, 2012 at 1:15 PM

It was argued on ESPN this morning that since this decision has come from his home country’s doping agency, it has some legitimacy. How naive. The USADA is virulently political and often desperate to find approval from its European detractors.

mankai on August 24, 2012 at 1:15 PM

I don’t see how they have the authority. The USADA appears to be a creature of the U.S. Olympic Committee. How do they have jurisdiction over the Tour de France?

JayDick on August 24, 2012 at 1:15 PM

Guilty until proven innocent.

Over and over and over again…

Spannerhead on August 24, 2012 at 1:15 PM

Anti-doping rules work. Look at Ryan Braun. Oh, wait,…don’t.

a capella on August 24, 2012 at 1:16 PM

I heard from a very reliable source that he hasn’t paid taxes in ten years.

mankai on August 24, 2012 at 1:17 PM

Leave the titles with Lance. Asterisk the entire race as likely-performance-enhanced. Continually improve testing to sort this stuff out at the time of the race.

dedalus on August 24, 2012 at 1:18 PM

USADA has no such authority to strip his titles, and its completely laughable if they claim to. I’m also really mad that most news sites have been reporting this as if Lance gave up/admitted to wrongdoing, which is nowhere near what happened. Argh.

mythicknight on August 24, 2012 at 1:18 PM

Liberals are losers so they can’t relate to someone like Armstrong. Just like they’re stupid so they can’t begin to understand truly intelligent people because their only point of comparison is their own intelligence.

Lost in Jersey on August 24, 2012 at 1:18 PM

He’s right, this has been a witch hunt from the very beginning. He never failed a drug test, yet they still declare him guilty PLUS decide to strip him of every title AND ban him for life? C’mon.

changer1701 on August 24, 2012 at 1:19 PM

Well the evidence against Armstrong is going to be made public soon so we will see in detail what led their decision.

lexhamfox on August 24, 2012 at 1:19 PM

This is because Lance Armstrong took a Bike Ride with George W Bush.

Don’t think it doesn’t.

portlandon on August 24, 2012 at 1:19 PM

He was clean until they prove he was dirty. And even IF they ever do that, he still mopped the floor with admitted cheaters.

I hope the UCI tells the USADA to take their witch hunt and shove it.

Longing4Lincoln on August 24, 2012 at 1:20 PM

Does the lifetime ban prevent him from participating in triathlons?

pt on August 24, 2012 at 1:20 PM

Those govt bureaucrats have to justify their existence, somehow…

brak on August 24, 2012 at 1:20 PM

How can they strip him of titles awarded by other organizations…?

d1carter on August 24, 2012 at 1:20 PM

EXPLAIN TO ME:
Lance Armstrong gets tested over 500+ times and NEVER fails a single drug test and is proven guilty 12 years later on the testimony of convicted liars and cheats.

John Corzine runs a ponzi scheme and it collapses in front of him so he STEALS a BILLION dollars of his clients money to pay for it and now he is cleared of any potential charges….

SOUNDS LIKE OBAMA’S AMERICA TO ME!

SDarchitect on August 24, 2012 at 1:21 PM

This is a tragedy. A bureaucratic bully wears down someone who, not only passed more drug tests than any cycler was subjected to DURING the time of the races, but also accomplished something so great that the idiots persecuting him couldn’t even imagine doing it without cheating. Very sad.

Meric1837 on August 24, 2012 at 1:21 PM

Where’s the birf certificate!? Whoops my bad, where’s the evidence!?

El_Terrible on August 24, 2012 at 1:21 PM

Love to watch the Giro d’Italia, otherwise I’m not really a cycling fan, can’t stand Armstrong and agree that he’s probably not squeaky clean as I doubt that many are, but this is one of the most ridiculous inquisitions I’ve ever witnessed. It’s old news, the guy is retired stop wasting time and money on this imbecilic shakedown. Even MLB isn’t this bad and we know they found some big things recently.

stukinIL4now on August 24, 2012 at 1:22 PM

I hope the UCI tells the USADA to take their witch hunt and shove it.

Longing4Lincoln on August 24, 2012 at 1:20 PM

Don’t hold your breath.

Red Cloud on August 24, 2012 at 1:23 PM

Put all of ‘em on a Stingray. Doping or not, I could, at least, kinda respect anybody who finished the Tour de France on one of them.

Sidebar: I used to love watching the Tour de France; but all of this blood-doping has ruined it for me.

Just another bunch of meatheads, who need to get a real job.

OhEssYouCowboys on August 24, 2012 at 1:23 PM

I thought the IOC was the only body that could strip Olympic medals..?

d1carter on August 24, 2012 at 1:23 PM

How can they strip him of titles awarded by other organizations…?

Because no one’s told them they can’t or mustn’t.

Typical of leftist infiltration of organizations such as these. Punish individual achievement, success and exceptionalism. It isn’t fair for an American to have won so many titles in France’s premiere sporting event, now is it.

hawkeye54 on August 24, 2012 at 1:24 PM

Guilty until proven innocent.

Over and over and over again…

Spannerhead on August 24, 2012 at 1:15 PM

Actually, more like guilty until proven guilty.

He passed his test, that’s all you can ask.

rbj on August 24, 2012 at 1:24 PM

Lance Dopestrong faces the loss of his seven Tour de France titles

myth: busted.

sesquipedalian on August 24, 2012 at 1:25 PM

USADA takes giant step in athletic justice; nearer goal of universal “participant” trophies vice recognizing individual effort for all sporting events.

Full disclosre: Until Pete is in the Hall, I couldn’t care less about the operations of any sport sanctioning body. They can all go bugger themselves.

BobMbx on August 24, 2012 at 1:25 PM

But a years-long, repeatedly meandering witch hunt against a man that never once tested positive on a drug test while active in the sport,

If Armstrong never tested positive on a drug test, what evidence is there that he ever took performance-enhancing drugs? If there’s no evidence that Armstrong has cheated, he could be totally innocent and one of the world’s greatest cyclists.

If he was “stripped” of his Tour de France championships by an arbitrary decision of witch-hunters with no supporting evidence, this would discourage other promising young cyclists from pursuing their sport, since they too could be arbitrarily and retroactively stripped of any rewards they win on baseless accusations.

I had read that the charges against Armstrong were based on a single urine sample that some French chemist found suspect six years after Armstrong actually gave the sample. Any fool could realize that an old urine sample could undergo many chemical changes over six years, and contain substances that were not in the original sample when it left Armstrong’s body.

Meanwhile, 50-year-old Roger Clemens, who was convicted of lying to Congress about doping during his major-league career, has recently signed a contract as a pitcher with a minor-league team…

Steve Z on August 24, 2012 at 1:26 PM

The French are behind this.
They hate Lance as much as we hate Obozo.

Rush says they’re coming after his money.
Time to go rogue, Lance and eff ‘em all.

We miss you, Lance on the TourdF.
The Schleck brothers are no substitute for you.

I don’t actually care if you were juiced.
You still won 7X which is amazing in itself.

Typicalwhitewoman on August 24, 2012 at 1:26 PM

Some commenters in the Drudge link say he failed 3 tests which would come out if the case continued. Meh, who knows.

Dongemaharu on August 24, 2012 at 1:26 PM

When it comes to people whose sole job function is to justify their inflated salaries, everybody is guilty until proven innocent if it serves the right purpose. The same principle applies to both the public and private sectors.

Blacklake on August 24, 2012 at 1:26 PM

I am all for trying to keep athletics of all sorts clean and drug-free

Why?

lorien1973 on August 24, 2012 at 1:27 PM

defund/Disband the USADA NOW!!!! I personally have no interest in cycling but the idea thata government agency ignores the facts and threatens to strip Lance Armstrong is beyond the pale…who do they think they are the EPA?

JKotthoff on August 24, 2012 at 1:27 PM

Leave the titles with Lance. Asterisk the entire race as likely-performance-enhanced. Continually improve testing to sort this stuff out at the time of the race.

dedalus on August 24, 2012 at 1:18 PM

Not just no, but hell no. Innocent until PROVEN guilty. There is ZERO evidence to indicate that Lance Armstrong is guilty of anything. Travis Tygart=Mike Nifong.

SWalker on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

He bikes with GWB.

Until I see concrete evidence to the cotrary, I’ll believe this is what did him in.

I don’t care if anyone thinks it’s ridiculous. All around us is ridiculous and surreal any more.

I don’t blame the good man for giving up. He should starve the machine.
—————–
Mitt needs to threaten Gawker and the Obama machine with a law suit for releasing all that information, alas.

Degenerate thugs run the land.

Allow them to continue and enjoy what the stupid people have broght upon the land.

Schadenfreude on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

I propose the USADA next set their sights on Joe Biden!

I mean, if there is ANYONE who is obviously doping up big time these days…..

pilamaye on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

Sorry have to disagree with Erika here. Armstrong is as dirty as sin, and I’m glad they finally nailed him!

Besides let’s not forget Lance’s Armstrong is also a far left zealot, and a massive tool bag who left his loving wife and family for Sheryl “one tissue of toilet paper” Crow.

And at the height of the Komen vs Planned Parenthood battle his foundation donated $1 million dollars to Planned Parenthood.

Glad they finally nailed the douche!

Raquel Pinkbullet on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

contrary

Schadenfreude on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

I’m a huge cycling fan as I have admitted before. And yes this does look like a witch hunt but if you know anything at all about pro cycling you know everyone is on drugs. Drugs that are so far ahead of the curve that it takes years for the testers to even understand what they are dealing with. There is a whole pharma industry subculture devoted to creating designer drugs that will not show up in your pee test tomorrow.

I hate to pre-judge but my instincts and knowledge of the sport say the guy (along with EVERYONE ELSE) was using performance enhancing chems…

CorporatePiggy on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

It worked with Sarah. Push, push, make accusations, force the”victim” to defend and defend, distracted from his/her duties and desires.Force them to go broke paying lawyers.

Then crow when the targets finally realize they are in a no-win situation and give up.

Sounds like Alinsky to me.

FOWG1 on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

Nothing a li’l donation to USADA’s list of pet causes from a sponsor couldn’t prevent.

Archivarix on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

Will the USADA come after Michael Phelps next and strip him of his 18 gold medals, including some from 8 years ago?

Steve Z on August 24, 2012 at 1:29 PM

So the list of federal agencies to eliminate grows to Dept of Education, Department of Energy, IRS, and now USADA…

VastRightWingConspirator on August 24, 2012 at 1:29 PM

brought upon the land, alas.

Schadenfreude on August 24, 2012 at 1:29 PM

Never.
Tested.
Positive.

And that, in the midst of a massive attempt to find him guilty. Either he executed a multi-year coverup of epic proportions while passing hundreds of drug tests. OR, he is a physical freak of nature that worked his butt off to be the best.

As for me, he’s still the only 7-time winner of Le Tour.

Tar Heel Sooner on August 24, 2012 at 1:30 PM

I hate to pre-judge but my instincts and knowledge of the sport say the guy (along with EVERYONE ELSE) was using performance enhancing chems…

CorporatePiggy on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

Even if you are right – without evidence, other than circumstantial who siad what in his enemies camps, it’s all nothing.

Schadenfreude on August 24, 2012 at 1:31 PM

I am all for trying to keep athletics of all sorts clean and drug-free

What about Wheaties? While in no way can a box of Wheaties be labelled a drug, it is advertised as a performance-enhancing food. GatorAde, Red Bull, anything at a GNC store with “Joe Wieder” on the label.

All performance enhancing stuff. If the desire is to have a level playing field, then go all in. Everyone who considers themselves to a an athlete in competition must eat a prescribed diet without deviation.

Otherwise, if I eat a bowl of Wheaties and nobody else in the race does, then I have availed myself of a performance-enhancing substance and should be disqualified.

I think I’ll place bets on baseball instead.

BobMbx on August 24, 2012 at 1:32 PM

…Armstrong is as dirty as sin, and I’m glad they finally nailed him!

Besides let’s not forget Lance’s Armstrong is also a far left zealot, and a massive tool bag who left his loving wife and family for Sheryl “one tissue of toilet paper” Crow.

And at the height of the Komen vs Planned Parenthood battle his foundation donated $1 million dollars to Planned Parenthood.

Glad they finally nailed the douche!

Raquel Pinkbullet on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

So he’s guilty of doping because you disagree with his politics? Gotcha.

Longing4Lincoln on August 24, 2012 at 1:32 PM

Funny, Travis Tygart doesn’t sound French…

d1carter on August 24, 2012 at 1:32 PM

After they take the titles from him, if they actually do, he needs to sue their tight little shorts off! I should think that he would have a case on a number of points.

Otherwise, they’ll probably go after Eddie Merckx’s corpse for winning while smoking…. Gitanes even!

TBinSTL on August 24, 2012 at 1:33 PM

Nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition.

But eveyone expects the Holder Inquisition, unless you’re in Obama’s Degenerate Camp.

Who reported the 19 dead in the Chicago district? No one. No one ever will. They die like rats, every night, and no one cares.

Schadenfreude on August 24, 2012 at 1:33 PM

Even if you are right – without evidence, other than circumstantial who siad what in his enemies camps, it’s all nothing.

Schadenfreude on August 24, 2012 at 1:31 PM

I wonder why he would surrender 7 tour wins. That’s a big deal.

And I wonder if he didn’t want to go through the full dress-down if the agencies have finally worked out what he was using.

CorporatePiggy on August 24, 2012 at 1:34 PM

Never.
Tested.
Positive.

Never
Charged
With
Tax
Evasion

According to Harry’s Law, Lance is guilty until he proves he didn’t take drugs, and two decades of drug test results don’t count.

BobMbx on August 24, 2012 at 1:35 PM

“Lance, you didn’t win that (7 Tour de France titles)”
/Obama’s USADA

Bitter Clinger on August 24, 2012 at 1:35 PM

According to wikipedia:

Travis Tygart became Chief Executive Officer of the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency (USADA) in September of 2007.[1] In his nine years at USADA he has also served as the Director of Legal Affairs and as Senior Managing Director and General Douche;…

Patrick S on August 24, 2012 at 1:35 PM

Good grief. How is it that people are saying they think he’s not quite squeaky-clean, but he passed over 500 tests?! That’s a ridiculous amount to pass and still be found guilty, I’d say.

robertlbryant on August 24, 2012 at 1:35 PM

who do they think they are the EPA?

Well, since its a quasi-government bureaucracy largely funded by our tax dollars, yes. They do.

hawkeye54 on August 24, 2012 at 1:37 PM

Sorry have to disagree with Erika here. Armstrong is as dirty as sin, and I’m glad they finally nailed him!

Besides let’s not forget Lance’s Armstrong is also a far left zealot, and a massive tool bag who left his loving wife and family for Sheryl “one tissue of toilet paper” Crow.

And at the height of the Komen vs Planned Parenthood battle his foundation donated $1 million dollars to Planned Parenthood.

Glad they finally nailed the douche!

Raquel Pinkbullet on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

You may not like his politics, but what evidence do you have to say his is “dirty as sin”?

Bitter Clinger on August 24, 2012 at 1:37 PM

Raquel Pinkbullet on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

From you I expect so much better/more.

His politics are not quite as you describe them, no matter the individual donations/preferences/idiocies, and should have nothing to do with this.

This is not France of yore…in the U.S. one is not guilty until proven otherwise.

France just changed their laws – neither guilty, nor innocent, until proven. They couldn’t quite admit that the Brits are right.

Schadenfreude on August 24, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Raquel Pinkbullet on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

I agree that he’s a scum bag, but it still looks like a witch hunt if he’s passed all of his drug tests. I don’t want people to throw out the innocent until proven guilty rule just because they’re going after a guy I can’t stand.

pannw on August 24, 2012 at 1:38 PM

It’s not over Lance………you just threw fresh chum to the sharks.

Criminal charges against Armstrong in 5…….4…….3…..

ANYTHING they can find.

PappyD61 on August 24, 2012 at 1:38 PM

I’m a huge cycling fan as I have admitted before. And yes this does look like a witch hunt but if you know anything at all about pro cycling you know everyone is on drugs. Drugs that are so far ahead of the curve that it takes years for the testers to even understand what they are dealing with. There is a whole pharma industry subculture devoted to creating designer drugs that will not show up in your pee test tomorrow.
I hate to pre-judge but my instincts and knowledge of the sport say the guy (along with EVERYONE ELSE) was using performance enhancing chems…

CorporatePiggy on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM

This is why the Olympics are such a joke, and always have been. Can you imagine the amount of money that the Chinese have thrown into performance enhancing drugs … and how to mask them?

I bet that it’s in the billions of dollars. It’s a matter of Chinese Commie prestige … and they would stop at nothing.

Didn’t I hear that a female, Chinese swimmer BROKE [in 2012] what WAS [in 2008] a record time for a male, in the same event distance?

OhEssYouCowboys on August 24, 2012 at 1:38 PM

pannw on August 24, 2012 at 1:38 PM

Indeed. If you don’t protect them, there is no justice, freedom or liberty, none.

Schadenfreude on August 24, 2012 at 1:40 PM

There was a controversy over a 2003 test of Armstrong’s frozen 1999 Tour de France sample. The sample tested positive for EPO. In 1999, tests could not detect EPO, hence the 2003 re-test. Armstrong claimed the lab was wrong and caused such drama that cycling dropped the issue at the time. Now comes the news that several 2009 & 2010 blood tests showed unusual spikes in his hematocrit, which is the main thing improved by designer drugs that are so new they don’t show up yet in testing. And that 10 of Armstrong’s teammates were prepared to testify under oath that they personally witnessed him taking performance enhancing drugs.

To say that there is no evidence against him is ridiculous. People defended Floyd Landis to the end, too, and he was guilty as sin. Landis has also said that he injected literally right next to Armstrong.

AngusMc on August 24, 2012 at 1:40 PM

Continually improve testing to sort this stuff out at the time of the race.

Or don’t, because the whole idea is stupid. The only reason to ban a particular training regimen–whether it’s weightlifting, or nutrition, or painkillers, or blood spinning, or steroids–is if it harms the long-term health of the athletes. It is unethical to force someone to ruin his health to be competitive. For example, steroid use at the level found in modern bodybuilders clearly has very bad long-term effects on the liver, so that should be banned. But Lance Armstrong is likely the healthiest man on the planet, and certainly the healthiest survivor of metastasized cancer on the planet. Whatever drugs he was taking are manifestly not harmful.

Fabozz on August 24, 2012 at 1:40 PM

Defend the indefensible because he’s one of us? He just got caught once? Call Pete Rose.

It’s called choice and he made the wrong one.

Don L on August 24, 2012 at 1:41 PM

He can keep his titles as long as he keeps his Leftwing, sanctimonious ass out of my pocket, i.e Cali Cig taxes, AGAIN,I didn’t hurt anyone, why am
I being stripped of my $ Lance?
Hypocrite liberal is all he is,
Bob

Bobnormal on August 24, 2012 at 1:41 PM

Just one more place that our tax dollars should not be spent…sports should be allowed/required to regulate themselves without a bottomless bucket of taxpayer money.

Fact – Lance Armstrong brought more attention to cycling than any other rider in the history of the sport…and passed drug test after drug test along the way. So now they want to destroy him. I may never watch another Tour.

tnarch on August 24, 2012 at 1:42 PM

He didnt do it by himself, and spread the wealth…

anikol on August 24, 2012 at 1:42 PM

I’d suggest reading the full story. It’s very damning. I realize it’s the NY Times, but the background, corroborative witnesses and those agreeing to testify present a substantial case of cheating and a continuous effort at cover-up.

http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/a/lance_armstrong/index.html

rrpjr on August 24, 2012 at 1:43 PM

They’ll be going after Michael Phelps next. Already some jerk claims Derek Jeter uses steroids. No one is allowed to be a long-running winner in the People’s Republic of America. Wouldn’t be fair to the others. The original “Rollerball” movie was a bit prophetic.

hadsil on August 24, 2012 at 1:43 PM

Cycling is a dirty business where almost all cheat in some way at some time. Lance may or may not have always been clean, and may or may not be a total jerk. But how do you convict with only the words of other known cheats as evidence? And since when does a U.S. agency assume control over an international governing body? A disgrace for all involved.

Scotsman on August 24, 2012 at 1:44 PM

And yes Lance is no angel.

All you great sports gods out there……..take note. (Tiger Woods, Clemens, Rose, Lance, etc.)

All those years of training, all the pride, honors, millions, praise from the masses……..POOF GONE.

PappyD61 on August 24, 2012 at 1:45 PM

It seems that all of the top cyclists were doping. Lance was the best of them, so let him keep his medals.

mydh12 on August 24, 2012 at 1:45 PM

When the rightis yahoos align themselves with sequipedalian the end of times are near, good thing.

———
Heh, portlandon :) I hadn’t seen your comment until now.

Schadenfreude on August 24, 2012 at 1:45 PM

As Armstrong goes on to say, the USADA (largely funded by your tax dollars, by the way! Yippee!)

Armstrong’s team was largely funded by tens of millions of your tax dollars (USPS).

JStew on August 24, 2012 at 1:45 PM

rightist yahoos

Schadenfreude on August 24, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Just one more place that our tax dollars should not be spent…sports should be allowed/required to regulate themselves without a bottomless bucket of taxpayer money.

Fact – Lance Armstrong brought more attention to cycling than any other rider in the history of the sport…and passed drug test after drug test along the way. So now they want to destroy him. I may never watch another Tour.

tnarch

Here, here. +10

Typicalwhitewoman on August 24, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Armstrong’s team was largely funded by tens of millions of your tax dollars (USPS).

JStew on August 24, 2012 at 1:45 PM

Maybe that’s why they are bankrupt…they found their “what to blame”.

Schadenfreude on August 24, 2012 at 1:47 PM

But how do you convict with only the words of other known cheats as evidence?
Scotsman on August 24, 2012 at 1:44 PM

Those coming forward to testify are NOT cheats. Read the story.

rrpjr on August 24, 2012 at 1:47 PM

And lest we forget……if he did it…..HE should be held responsible.

The Age of No Personal Responsibility in the West is in full bloom. Witness the Brits blaming the media, the girl taking the pics, everyone but Prince Harry.

If he did it, make him pay.

PappyD61 on August 24, 2012 at 1:48 PM

Geesh, pass every hoop they give you and seven years later they can still do this without evidence? I guess guilt by bankruptcy is going to become SOP now.

Cindy Munford on August 24, 2012 at 1:49 PM

rightist yahoos

Schadenfreude on August 24, 2012 at 1:46 PM

Doping is also common in amateur cycling.

You can call it yahoo or whatever but the thing is cycling is incredibly dirty. And there is a point – if you log big miles over a sustained period of time your entire body starts to shut down. You lose weight through muscle damage and atrophy. Your brain starts to frazzle.

To be competitive at the higher levels you WILL use everything you can lay your hands on. Or you will not be competitive.

It is one of the most extreme endurance sports out there. Even with drugs you need the mental fortitude to accept that you are willingly destroying your body.

CorporatePiggy on August 24, 2012 at 1:51 PM

Sorry have to disagree with Erika here. Armstrong is as dirty as sin, and I’m glad they finally nailed him!

Besides let’s not forget Lance’s Armstrong is also a far left zealot, and a massive tool bag who left his loving wife and family for Sheryl “one tissue of toilet paper” Crow.

Every word of this is complete and utter bs. First, Lance’s only known political leanings have been Republican.

Yes, he dated lefty loon Sheryl Crow but absolutely did not ‘leave his loving wife and family’ to do so. He’d been divorced for some time before he started dating Crow.

kit9 on August 24, 2012 at 1:52 PM

Next they’ll try to take away his birthday. No matter they say and do he’ll always be a 7x champion.

Buttercup on August 24, 2012 at 1:52 PM

Some commenters in the Drudge link say he failed 3 tests which would come out if the case continued. Meh, who knows.

[Dongemaharu on August 24, 2012 at 1:26 PM]

I think those tests are actually retests of earlier samples, so what they are saying is that the first tests failed for some unspecified reason or reasons.

I don’t know why they hold back on their results; just put the evidence out there and not play games with coercing Armstrong on Arbitration. Offhand, it sounds like blackmail to me, which seems like a nice time to link this from Volokh Conspiracy.

Like you said. Meh.

Dusty on August 24, 2012 at 1:53 PM

This is because Lance Armstrong took a Bike Ride with George W Bush.

Don’t think it doesn’t.

portlandon on August 24, 2012 at 1:19 PM

..did not see a sarc tag and this might be a little extreme but NOT BY MUCH. If you want to see how much these folks (USA and International) can be assh*les, watch the movie “The Flying Scotsman” about Graeme Obree’s attempt to get the one hour time trialing record.

The War Planner on August 24, 2012 at 1:53 PM

Again, I’m all about doping controls, but maybe you guys should think about a cost v. benefit analysis before you absorb everybody’s time and resources with an inquest that’s thin on evidence and ripe with malice.

It really doesn’t sound like you are. The US is by and large quite lax when it comes to doping – getting caught in the MLB gets you suspended for about 1/3 of one season. In Europe the penalty in soccer is for 2 full years. Cheating ruins sport, end of story. I’m not about to get all nationalistic and throw away the rules. Keep that petty emotional crap out of doping regulation.

ernesto on August 24, 2012 at 1:54 PM

I hope the UCI tells the USADA to take their witch hunt and shove it.

Longing4Lincoln on August 24, 2012 at 1:20 PM

They already have. UCI has ordered USADA to stop their investigation into this matter. USADA doesn’t care and is continuing.

Shump on August 24, 2012 at 1:54 PM

Every word of this is complete and utter bs. First, Lance’s only known political leanings have been Republican.

Wrong, he’s a huge liberal.

Why are Republicans defending this Planned Parenthood donor(during the Komen crisis even)… you guys have to be the biggest bunch of goobers to 1) believe him 2) take his side after donating to PP during the Komen brouhaha.

ninjapirate on August 24, 2012 at 1:54 PM

Had the case gone to arbitration, all the testimony against him by his teammates would have become public record. By ending his claim and refusing arbitration, all the testimony remains sealed. Helps explain why Armstrong rejected arbitration…

AngusMc on August 24, 2012 at 1:55 PM

[Raquel Pinkbullet on August 24, 2012 at 1:28 PM]

So, you’re into persecution and prosecution for political crimes? Good to know.

Dusty on August 24, 2012 at 1:56 PM

As I remarked last night on an Althouse thread, I am a fan and have been since the early ’70′s, and this is just total bullshit.

Total. Effin’. Bullshit.

We watched those races. And we know who won.

…the USADA should be defunded and banned.

davisbr on August 24, 2012 at 1:58 PM

No evidence, never tested positive.

Witch hunt.

rickyricardo on August 24, 2012 at 1:13 PM

Not true, he used a cream that cyclist use for “saddle sores” and traces of it showed up on his skin, he tested positive and it has a trace steroid in the product.

That’s it, that is the only proof they have…good grief.

right2bright on August 24, 2012 at 2:02 PM

davisbr, there were 10 or so people willing to testify against him… do you honestly think they’re all lying?

ninjapirate on August 24, 2012 at 2:02 PM

Call me when bicycle racing starts puting 40,000 plus paying fans in the stands on an August Tuesday afternoon or when Jerry Jones builds a 1.2 Billion Dollar velodrome.

Wallythedog on August 24, 2012 at 2:03 PM

If you disapprove of what the USADA is doing to Lance, write them a note expressing your displeasure to: athleteexpress@usada.org. Taxpayer money is funding this ridiculous witch hunt. We all need to speak up and tell them to stop the persecution of this fine athlete, father and cancer survivor. Let Lance compete. If he is cheating, produce the test results that prove it.

NuclearPhysicist on August 24, 2012 at 2:04 PM

The amount of money, the time, the angst, none of us could ever imagine.
Being hounded…

What was Reagan’s famous line about the worst words?

“I am here from the government to help” are something similar…

right2bright on August 24, 2012 at 2:05 PM

We know these tests work, just ask Melky Cabrerra and Bartolo Colon. So if Armstrong hasn’t been caught in 300-600 tests (depending on whose numbers you use) its crap. This is some Fraco-phile’s attempt to delegitimize Lance so the French can have the top title back.
And let’s not forget this is the sport where guys hide electric motors in their bikes.

Iblis on August 24, 2012 at 2:06 PM

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