2/14/08

Why

Why was congress having a hearing on drug use in baseball? I did not watch it, I was traveling all day, I would not have watched it if had been home. The commentary that I heard on the News Hour last night made it sound like a soap opera, which it is. I could not but help but think that with all the issues that we have in our country today, why is congress wasting their time on this. Don’t get me wrong, I dead set against drug use in sport, but this served no purpose. Who was not lying? There is no solution to this problem that is outside the commissioner’s office, it is amazing how silent the great Bud Selig is on this. I really believe he hopes it will all go away, all he cares about is asses on numbers, selling tickets.

8 Comments:

At 2/14/08, 9:26 AM, Blogger Joe P. said...

To make it even wierder, why are repubs for Clemens, & dems for Macnemae? I hope no other countries are watching this.

 
At 2/14/08, 10:12 AM, Blogger Lucas said...

You probably already know this and I'm just making an ass of myself, but technically congress is looking into it because they're the overseeing body for MLB. Congress oversees MLB to make sure the league doesn't abuse its antitrust exemption. Of course, that's just the technical reason. The real reason is that congressmen would rather talk about baseball and meet famous players than deal with the real issues.

 
At 2/14/08, 12:18 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

In the end I think it will be shown that the parties are not very good at solving baseball's or the country's problems. Then again, maybe they are doing us a favor by not trying to fix the country's problems because some might say they created them.

Mark Day

 
At 2/14/08, 5:35 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm starting to find this whole thing very interesting on a non-baseball level. Roger Clemens is going to be a study for Absolute Truth and Perceived Truth. I think Roger is in complete denial. Integrity is such an issue for him; he can’t see what he has done.
--Kasey

 
At 2/14/08, 9:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Politicians checking for truth? Seriously, politicians checking for truth!?

Jeff
Buffalo

 
At 2/15/08, 1:20 PM, Blogger G-42 said...

Vern,
first off - thanks for your blog. I think it's absolutely valid for Congress to investigate MLB, since there's a legislated anti-trust exemption that is at the heart of the economic viability of that whole franchise. It's also pertinent b/c of the huge counter-productive effect the wink/nudge drug culture in professional sports is having on young athletes.

That said - I agree with your assessment that the way it came down (like most congressional hearings) was pure theater, and ended up being a rather disgraceful display. I guess it's important to recognize that in a representative democracy, the representatives don't just represent the best in us - they are all too human on the ugly stuff as well (and, one might argue, maybe even more so given the tremendous amounts of ego inflation needed to run for office these days).

I'm an amateur athlete with a day job and a family (I race windsurfers - a sport that is probably as clean as anything wrt doping - for a variety of reasons, including the lack of economic incentives). Drugs in sports are a huge disappointment to me. I remember being at a running store with my 7-year-old daughter; there was a life-sized Nike poster of Marion Jones on the wall, and I was about to point it out to her, always grateful for a strong female role model for her - and I had this twinge that made me hesitate - basically, I have a hard time trusting anyone in T&F these days. Sure enough, two days later I'm listening to NPR on my commute and hear Marion Jones confessing tearfully to a history of comprehensive and long-running drug use. Wow - it's getting harder and harder to parent these days.

I can't even begin to imagine how I would deal with it if my kids started following MLB - how would all those lessons about building character that I believe are to be found in sports get through to them if they found that the biggest names in baseball have to be viewed with suspicion?

Maybe it's just a matter of turning sports (a quest for excellence and an outlet for competitive spirit) into mass entertainment. Maybe it's the economics. Maybe it's the fact that society as a whole seems to play fast and loose with its principles and values - after all, as a society we're eagerly selling out the next generation for short-term gain on any number of issues, from ignoring their educational needs (both mental and physical) to mortgaging their future (national debt, neglected infrastructure, non-sustainable energy policies, etc.).

And I still believe that on a small scale, sports and physical achievement, whether it be in our families, our children's soccer teams, our schools and communities - can make a difference by modeling to kids what works; not the hugely dysfunctional, high-end entertainment model of professional sports leagues, but the grassroots pursuit of excellence and health and a life lived fully.

Again - thanks for providing resources for all of us who take our sports seriously, no matter at which level. Your approach is all about building sustainable foundations for long-term growth and progress, and it's refreshing that you show how to make that work in an almost hostile environment that's all about shortcuts and quick fixes. Good on you!

-Andreas

http://g-42.blogspot.com

 
At 2/16/08, 6:31 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

MLB said that they have the toughest drug policy in professional sports.

Can anyone tell me what is the percentage of players at Major League level being tested? or How many players being tested?

Bud Sealig is being mum because he wants all the facts before passing judgement. YEEEAHHHH Rigggght!

Curious Cat

 
At 2/16/08, 7:33 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Andy Petitte lied.
Chuckle Knoblauch lied.
Brian McNamee lied.
Bud Selig fault for not telling Roger about Mitchell investigation.

Everyone lied but Roger Clemens.

Hmmm?

 

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