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Drummer Boy

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Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
« Reply #60 on: February 04, 2012, 22:37 »

I have some thoughts and observations to share.

I was in a restaurant last night with one of my very best friends, he is the closest thing I have to a brother. We are both drummers and that's a large part of our bond. He has for quite sometime worn a yellow Livestrong band, but purely as a pop fashion statement, nothing more, nothing less (he's like that). He knows absolutely nothing about cycling whatsoever and couldn't care less. It's just not a part of my life that I ever bother to share with him, and that seems to suit both of us quite well. I have never once said a word about his yellow bracelet. It's completely irrelevant to our friendship.

So there we are, eating dinner, and I see a ticker on the TV say something about the Feds and Armstrong. I asked him to check the web on his phone and find out the details. Within a few short moments he quoted the news that "The Feds have dropped all charges against Armstrong." He looked at me with only the slightest bit of interest and asked, "Why? What did he do?"

I would describe my friend as the average American sports fan. He loves baseball, watches some basketball, follows the NFL, watches ESPN, and is, at best, only vaguely aware that cycling, as a sport, even exists. As previously mentioned, he wears a yellow wrist band only because it is something to do. And his reaction was, "Why? What did he do?" To most people, this is a non-event. I would love for that to be Lance's legacy in general. "Why? What did he do?"

My only reply on the matter was, "Oh, the Feds have been looking at all sort of possible charges from money laundering and tax evasion to the possible distribution of PEDs for some time now. I'm sure there's much more to this story." And that was the end of our conversation on, and his interest in, the topic.

This was the classic example of dumping (burying) a story by releasing not only at the end of the day on a Friday, but on the eve of Super Bowl Weekend. NFL fan frenzy won't be distracted by this for even a second. And then once Monday rolls around, cycling fans will have the (supposed) Contador decision taking up plenty of headline space.

So here I am about 20 hours later, and I have not even been online yet (until just now) or followed a single link, or checked anywhere for any details whatsoever. I have my own problems to sort out for the time being. But it does bring several issues to light.

The debate on this issue around the webz lost any sort of value a very, very long time ago. From one perspective it could be said that there was one side that just wanted a manipulative, narcissistic bully to finally get what was coming to him. The "other side of the 'debate'' simply engaged in the sport of wanting to see the first side implode if things didn't quite unfold that way. The specifics became totally irrelevant. It had turned into nothing more than a dysfunctional dance of desperation, with hyperbole being the ammo of choice for each side. Mortal combat was being waged in the interest of settling personal vendettas. The "topic" had become merely a fenced in compound to wage that war.

I realized a long time ago that regardless of what came from all this, Lance had won, in his own way. He had those victories; his enemies didn't have theirs; he was rich, famous, and had legions of followers that, no matter what, were never going to lose the faith — even if prison became his temporary nesting spot. Even if totally exposed, the past is what it was and we all had to ride that roller coaster. But the truth has also has a way leaving its mark. And slowly but surely many of those who were vilified have been vindicated and have no doubt found more peace in their own lives as a result. To be sure, the real winners in all this have yet to be counted and a final tally drawn.

Countless war criminals have gotten away with things that don't deserve to be spoken of in the same breath as cycling. Financial catastrophe has been wrought around the world by men still wealthy beyond what most of us can even imagine. Is there justice in the world? Some of us were hoping for a glimmer of that, and may still get our wish, but in the tiny, tiny world of professional cycling a polluted decade is slowly fading into the distance without our help. Time tends to do that on its own. I still love to ride my bike and that won't be, and never has been, affected by the courtrooms or the governing bodies. I was doing that long before Lance ever came along.

Now off to watch a bit of the noise from the sidelines, but not for too long.
I am reminded by a comment Obama once made on 60 Minutes when asked if, when channel surfing, he paid attention to the political talking heads. His response was, “I don’t, and I’ll tell you why. I just don’t find the debate to be informative.”

Amen to that.
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  • Zam

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #61 on: February 04, 2012, 23:06 »
    WADA president says he expects US investigators to hand over US Postal files to USADA


    Read more: http://www.velonation.com/News/ID/11070/WADA-president-says-he-expects-US-investigators-to-hand-over-US-Postal-files-to-USADA.aspx#ixzz1lSPdgMhg
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  • Dim

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #62 on: February 04, 2012, 23:48 »
    Its going to be interesting to see how USADA deal with all this. Historically USADA was very supportive (and to an extent controlled) by Lance, but now they seem to be very heavily on the side of WADA and against the UCI. The fiasco in California when USADA were meant to be doing the testing and then suddenly the UCI decided against it and prevented them doing so.

    Theres a lot of very interesting power struggles going on at the moment. WADA on the side of USADA who in turn dont seem to be on the same page as the UCI. Wada working with the Afld and sharing information while not making the UCI privvy to that information.
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  • python

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #63 on: February 05, 2012, 09:01 »

    Theres a lot of very interesting power struggles going on at the moment. WADA on the side of USADA who in turn dont seem to be on the same page as the UCI.
    indeed. imo opinion, some of the power struggle has to do with the personality of tygart. he's a tough dude with principles. as zam's link stated, wada will do everything within their power to help usada get their hands on novi's files. i would not be surprised if richard the pound is still connected and adds to the power struggle, just like another retiree from the uci's end, his old nemesis mr. verbruggen.

    Quote
    ..Wada working with the Afld and sharing information while not making the UCI privvy to that information.
    if armstrong is the usada's aim (which i believe his is), the uci may have far more relevant and damning testing data than the afld. thus, the lack of cooperation unfortunately  may serve the cheat..
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  • just some guy

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    Amsterhammer

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #65 on: February 05, 2012, 14:55 »
    I have some thoughts and observations to share................


    Thank you for that splendid, well writtien contribution! Now something like this, is what this karma lark is good for. Consider yourself applauded! ;)
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  • Rock On and keep the Faith

    just some guy

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #66 on: February 05, 2012, 18:48 »
    http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/usada-may-struggle-to-study-all-evidence-in-lance-armstrong-investigation


    Quote
    On whether the United States Attorney's Office in Los Angeles would provide all evidence gathered, Mrozek added: "No, not necessarily. This comes down to certain rules, and laws and policies at the United States Department of justice. And if they want to request information from us we'll take a look at the request and see what, if anything, we can do to help them out."
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  • Zam

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #67 on: February 05, 2012, 19:28 »
    SSbike Shane Stokes cycling
    WADA's David Howman: If people try to stop something happening..there is something to be hidden"
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  • Zam

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #69 on: February 05, 2012, 19:36 »
    David Howman Interview: WADA’s director general speaks about Armstrong/USPS investigation


    http://www.velonation.com/News/ID/11077/David-Howman-Interview-WADAs-director-general-speaks-about-ArmstrongUSPS-investigation.aspx
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  • blutto

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #70 on: February 05, 2012, 21:30 »
    Thank you for that splendid, well writtien contribution! Now something like this, is what this karma lark is good for. Consider yourself applauded! ;)

    ...and heartedly seconded ...so sane and reasoned, whereas the scene at CN  has now descended into bedlam...and it should get even sillier now that Polish has made his entrance into the food-fight...

    Cheers

    blutto
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  • mew

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #71 on: February 05, 2012, 21:40 »
    haha bedlam is a good word for it.  :)
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  • Dim

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #72 on: February 05, 2012, 21:51 »
    Laurenzo Lapage (DS At Greenedge) and Johnny Weltz (Garmin) busy making minor tits of themselves. Seriously guys, sometimes its better just to say nothing

    http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D9SNBQE00&show_article=1

    to balance it, JV not overly impressed
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  • « Last Edit: February 05, 2012, 22:21 by Dim »

    Dim

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    mew

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    mew

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #75 on: February 05, 2012, 22:41 »
    Laurenzo Lapage (DS At Greenedge) and Johnny Weltz (Garmin) busy making minor tits of themselves. Seriously guys, sometimes its better just to say nothing

    http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D9SNBQE00&show_article=1

    to balance it, JV not overly impressed

    dim you are showing mastery of posting screenshots of tweets....
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  • mew

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    Thoughtforfood

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #77 on: February 05, 2012, 23:34 »
    ...and heartedly seconded ...so sane and reasoned, whereas the scene at CN  has now descended into bedlam...and it should get even sillier now that Polish has made his entrance into the food-fight...

    Cheers

    blutto

    Just lurked there.  Full retard has broken out.
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  • "There are a thousand hacking at the branches of evil to one who is striking at the root." ~ Thoreau

    Drummer Boy

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #78 on: February 06, 2012, 00:32 »
    How is it possible that Anthony Tan actually gets paid to "write" for an established website?

    http://velonews.competitor.com/2012/02/news/opinion-armstong-case-a-perilous-precedent_205562

    Quote
    Note the reasons for their decision to shelve the investigation – read the statement: “The United States Attorney determined that a public announcement concerning the closing of the investigation was warranted by numerous reports about the investigation in media outlets around the world.”

    In other words, the federal probe was ostensibly closed, not because there was no evidence, or too much taxpayers’ money had been wasted, or Novitzky, as Armstrong’s defense team repeatedly claimed, had an axe to grind, but due to the number of leaks to the press.

    The majority of these leaks emanated from the federal grand jury established in Los Angeles,...

    How could he possibly have extrapolated what he wrote from the very line he quoted in his own article?  :-\

    So this is what it comes down to. Even when it's spelled out for them and spoon fed, the cycling media still gets it totally wrong.

    I hardly ever bother with velonews, especially with their atrocious web design as of late, but I don't see any reason to ever view that site again. This is sophomoric beyond belief. He honestly can't separate the reason for the "announcement" itself from the (unnamed) reason for the "closing of the investigation"?

    When the cycling media handles what little details there are so poorly, I don't even want to imagine how the mainstream media will butcher this. The blurring of the truth is now complete. Just sad.
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  • python

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #79 on: February 06, 2012, 08:47 »
    Quote
    Several riders, including world sprint champion Mark Cavendish and former Armstrong teammate Yaroslav Popovych refused to discuss the Armstrong matter

    being himself part of the investigation, popo's reason is obvious, but cav....cav ? :-X yep, he's matured on me and i like it.
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  • L'arri

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #80 on: February 06, 2012, 09:58 »
    Laurenzo Lapage (DS At Greenedge) and Johnny Weltz (Garmin) busy making minor tits of themselves. Seriously guys, sometimes its better just to say nothing

    Weltz survived five seasons under Saiz at ONCE. No wonder he's nostalgic.  :)
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  • Cycling is a Europe thing only and I only watch from Omloop on cause I am cool and sh*t
    RIP Craig1985 / Craig Walsh
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    Damiano Machiavelli

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #81 on: February 07, 2012, 05:19 »
    Weltz survived five seasons under Saiz at ONCE. No wonder he's nostalgic.  :)

    I think it says a lot about Team Garmin.  Millar called Landis disgusting for talking.  Weltz says it is all about jealousy.  Vaughters told Landis to not name any names.  It is a bit of a pattern.  I think it is a good indication of the true culture of Slipstream.
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  • Just remember what ol' Jack Burton does when the Earth quakes and the poison arrows fall from the sky and the pillars of heaven shake. Yeah.  Jack just looks that big ol' storm right square in the eye and he says, "Gimmie your best shot, pal, I can take it."

    Damiano Machiavelli

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #82 on: February 07, 2012, 06:20 »
    As you all know, you never saw me in this topic over there. I very occasionally read a bit, shook my head at what was going on, and sort of came to the conclusion that 99% of posters seemed to expect something substantial, if not devastating, in the way of charges against LA to ensue from what the Feds have been doing for ages. No?

    I don't want to get deeply involved and I won't be arguing with anyone, but I'm curious: wtf happened? I thought his guilt was beyond doubt?

    Don't be disingenuous.  You were a true believer before you took your long vacation from CN. 

    Fraud is hard to prove.  After a decade has passed it is even harder.  It comes down to proving who knew what and when.  Often intent is a factor.  As the prols have discovered since the financial meltdown, even flagrant fraud on a massive scale is often impossible to prosecute criminally in America.  The U.S. has pee poor laws for prosecuting white collar fraud by organizations where culpability can be diffused through the enterprise.  That is why the prosecution of large criminal schemes are often boiled down to a few counts of easily provable mail or wire fraud, which are often minor acts in the grand scheme.   
     
    I also think that the Barry Bonds result had an effect.   It will be interesting if a newspaper publishes insider info about the decision process.

    The qui tam case might be interesting.  The lawyers were probably waiting for a criminal prosecution, knowing that it would make their case a slam dunk.  Now they have a much harder job.  Maybe they drop it altogether.  Maybe with nothing to wait for anymore the suit kicks into high gear.  Just because the feds did not prosecute criminally does not mean they won't join the qui tam suit.  A lot of fraud that should be criminally prosecuted in the U.S. ends up handled with civil penalties and settlements.
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  • just some guy

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #83 on: February 07, 2012, 15:01 »
    http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/concerns-over-closure-of-federal-investigation-into-armstrong-and-us-postal

    Quote
    Cyclingnews spoke to a source who had co-operated with the federal investigation. They indicated that the NPR reports held weight.

    “I talked to someone within the investigation but the reason why the case was shut down was due to a one man decision. The evidence against those involved was absolutely overwhelming. They were going to be charged with a slew of crimes but for reasons unexplained he closed the case saying it wasn't open for discussion,” the source said.
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  • barrus

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #84 on: February 07, 2012, 15:11 »
    http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/concerns-over-closure-of-federal-investigation-into-armstrong-and-us-postal

    Also as much as I want this saga to be over and Armstrong to fade into obscurity, something tells me this will not be the end. Also anyone who does not follow RR his twitter he alluded that something is coming, I don't know what, but considering the history of RR I believe that he is in the know on this and that some sort of sh*tstorm will occur in the future
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  • DinZ

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #86 on: February 07, 2012, 21:16 »
    Don't be disingenuous.  You were a true believer before you took your long vacation from CN. 

    Fraud is hard to prove.  After a decade has passed it is even harder.  It comes down to proving who knew what and when.  Often intent is a factor.  As the prols have discovered since the financial meltdown, even flagrant fraud on a massive scale is often impossible to prosecute criminally in America.  The U.S. has pee poor laws for prosecuting white collar fraud by organizations where culpability can be diffused through the enterprise.  That is why the prosecution of large criminal schemes are often boiled down to a few counts of easily provable mail or wire fraud, which are often minor acts in the grand scheme.   
     
    I also think that the Barry Bonds result had an effect.   It will be interesting if a newspaper publishes insider info about the decision process.

    The qui tam case might be interesting.  The lawyers were probably waiting for a criminal prosecution, knowing that it would make their case a slam dunk.  Now they have a much harder job.  Maybe they drop it altogether.  Maybe with nothing to wait for anymore the suit kicks into high gear.  Just because the feds did not prosecute criminally does not mean they won't join the qui tam suit.  A lot of fraud that should be criminally prosecuted in the U.S. ends up handled with civil penalties and settlements.

    thanks for these updates, makes it all easier for someone like me to understand.  :D
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  • Zam

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    Dim

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #88 on: February 07, 2012, 21:41 »
    Also as much as I want this saga to be over and Armstrong to fade into obscurity, something tells me this will not be the end. Also anyone who does not follow RR his twitter he alluded that something is coming, I don't know what, but considering the history of RR I believe that he is in the know on this and that some sort of sh*tstorm will occur in the future

    I think that fridays news caused four kinds of reaction
    1) Yeah, Lance is innocent, told you so haters
    2) Christ, I dont beleive it, well thats the end of that then
    3) Im not saying too much because this is far from the end of things.
    4) Above, but im going to let all the lance fans get all excited and then watch them crash

    The majority of people I talk to fit in the option 3 or option 4
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  • Damiano Machiavelli

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    Re: The official Lance Armstrong thread
    « Reply #89 on: February 07, 2012, 22:03 »
    Can someone post the tweets from RR referred to above?  I don't follow RR's twitter because I think that a communication method where everything is reduced to sentence length, leaving the readers to pick through the meaning like a palmist reading the lines on a hand, is basically stupid.

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