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Jim3k
05-04-2007, 01:00 AM
As with the Duke lacrosse scandal, the evidence in Floyd Landis's drug testing is starting to unravel. This CJR article looks at the issue from a journalistic ethics point of view: Did the journalists reach their condemnation too soon? Remember that not even landis knew what the WADA evidence was or what factors go into concluding that the sample tested positive.

http://www.cjr.org/issues/2007/3/Hughes.asp

The article then discusses the so-called Wiki means of getting ideas from professionals in the field just to be able to begin a defense of Landis's rejected claim of innocence. Neither Landis nor his attorney knew where to look until the Wiki contributors stepped up.

Kind of fascinating. There seems to be a hearing scheduled this month, though I don't think the article gave a date.

Jim3k
05-15-2007, 06:11 PM
Landis's hearing began yesterday.

Here is a report form the LA Times:

http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-landis15may15,1,7160664.story?coll=la-headlines-sports

hughgs
05-15-2007, 08:31 PM
Landis's hearing began yesterday.

Here is a report form the LA Times:

http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-landis15may15,1,7160664.story?coll=la-headlines-sports

You can see the Power Point presentation that the Landis team presented at the hearing:

http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/2007/may07/opening.ppt

dukemomLA
05-16-2007, 04:11 AM
I've followed the Tour de France for years. And truly I can't even imagine that Landis took drugs. I hope that he is exonerated completely. This is another witch hunt. Floyd L is not guilty -- but all of this will still taint his accomplishment.

JasonEvans
05-16-2007, 09:41 AM
For the uneducated-- does the final decision come from the USADA or is it some international cycling body?

Call me a cynic if you want, but I think the odds of an American who won the Tour de France getting a fair shake from an international body are pretty slim. Most of the world hates the US right now and international cycling really hates American cyclists.

-Jason "I have though Floyd was innocent all along" Evans

hughgs
05-16-2007, 11:11 AM
For the uneducated-- does the final decision come from the USADA or is it some international cycling body?

Call me a cynic if you want, but I think the odds of an American who won the Tour de France getting a fair shake from an international body are pretty slim. Most of the world hates the US right now and international cycling really hates American cyclists.

-Jason "I have though Floyd was innocent all along" Evans

This hearing is like a district court. Either party can still appeal to the CAS (Court of Arbitration Sportif, or something like that). They're the international body. There may also be additional avenues available after that, probably restricted to the US civil courts.

Jim3k
05-16-2007, 02:44 PM
Lab tech's testimony:

http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-landis16may16,1,7619418.story

hughgs
05-16-2007, 05:51 PM
Lab tech's testimony:

http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-landis16may16,1,7619418.story

Thanks. Jim, do you think that the LA Times is trying to cover the hearing from the Lab's standpoint? It definitely seems that Cyclingnews is covering the Landis presentation. If so, then I'll also start reading the LA Time coverage to get a more complete picture.

Jim3k
05-16-2007, 06:14 PM
Thanks. Jim, do you think that the LA Times is trying to cover the hearing from the Lab's standpoint? It definitely seems that Cyclingnews is covering the Landis presentation. If so, then I'll also start reading the LA Time coverage to get a more complete picture.

I dunno, George. This LAT article seems to be trying to be factual. All it had to report from yesterday was the tech's direct testimony. Cross-examination was to be today. I chose the LAT because it was local to the hearing.

I haven't looked to CyclingNews for any info. Maybe I should. Why don't you track Cycling News and I'll try to keep up with the LAT? Sound like a plan?

Maybe we should get Evans to put CNN on the case. ;)

Cavlaw
05-16-2007, 06:32 PM
I've been reading velonews for all things cycling related for years now. They're an excellent site and have quite a few articles up.

EDIT - BRILLIANT! He's been wearing a yellow tie for the hearing! :)

hughgs
05-16-2007, 07:00 PM
I dunno, George. This LAT article seems to be trying to be factual. All it had to report from yesterday was the tech's direct testimony. Cross-examination was to be today. I chose the LAT because it was local to the hearing.

I haven't looked to CyclingNews for any info. Maybe I should. Why don't you track Cycling News and I'll try to keep up with the LAT? Sound like a plan?

Maybe we should get Evans to put CNN on the case. ;)

I had asked the question before reading the article. That being said I think that following the LA Times articles seem to be the best way to go in terms of the news/facts about the case. Constantly reading Cyclingnews makes me forget what a journalist from a paper like the LA Times can do with a story.

I'll start reading the LA Times coverage and post Cyclingnews articles or links that offer anything new (like the Landis presentation). Thanks.

IUGrad03
05-16-2007, 08:57 PM
Call me a cynic if you want, but I think the odds of an American who won the Tour de France getting a fair shake from an international body are pretty slim. Most of the world hates the US right now and international cycling really hates American cyclists.

-Jason "I have though Floyd was innocent all along" Evans

Jason, I completely agree with you on this. The fact that the powers that be were basically going to let him off with a hand slap if he would implicate Lance pretty much slaughters the credibility of these charges.

By the way, I didn't realize you lived in Atlanta? I do to, but only for the next 9 days :)

Jim3k
05-17-2007, 02:08 PM
LAT headline above

http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-landis17may17,1,78179.story

Looks like Landis's lawyers are making some progress.

Wouldn't it be ironic if the lab's machine has been defective all along? This LAT story has the tech testifying that she has frequently had to get the machine's factory rep out to recalibrate it.


The incorrect or unacceptable results being produced by the machine tended to involve calibrations or verification runs, rather than readings on Landis' samples. But the defense may be intending to argue that the inadequacy of the machine casts doubt on Landis' results.

Mongongu's testimony suggested that the performance of the machine had been erratic for years; under questioning by Howard Jacobs, another lawyer for Landis, she said that she had had to summon a manufacturer's technician roughly 10 times since September 2003 to repair the hardware.

MulletMan
05-17-2007, 02:53 PM
LAT headline above

http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-landis17may17,1,78179.story

Looks like Landis's lawyers are making some progress.

Wouldn't it be ironic if the lab's machine has been defective all along? This LAT story has the tech testifying that she has frequently had to get the machine's factory rep out to recalibrate it.

You all know that I love me some cycling. The admission of Basso has made me sick to my stomach for weeks now, and I wonder if my thoughts on Floyd are colored by my hope that there is still some hope for the sport.

However, from the standpoint of a scientist, there is no excuse for the gaps that are decribed in that article. YOU WRITE EVERYTHING DOWN! EVERYTHING. For me, someone who makes thier livelihood at a lab bench, there is no doubt in my mind that, at best, these results are flawed, and, at worst, the gaps in time are from tampering with Landis' samples.

Plain and simple. The lab appears to have totally screwed up and/or falsified results.

tecumseh
05-17-2007, 03:06 PM
It seems to me that in such a huge case, following up on the "B" sample on the leader of the Tour would not it make much more sense to send it to another lab? This could solve all sorts of problems and if the second lab gave the same result it would be much more powerful. In fact perhaps the top leaders should have the "B" samples sent directly to a second lab without delay or additional handling.

Jim3k
05-17-2007, 06:30 PM
One of the lab techs testified she knew the sample was Landis's.

http://www.lompocrecord.com/articles/2007/05/17/ap/sports/d8p6bqd01.txt

So much for the lab's rule about confidentiality and blind testing.

However, Greg LeMond has testified that Landis has admitted he doped up. Worse, he has accused Landis's uncle of witness tampering, threatening to reveal that LeMond had told Landis about being molested as a child, and that the way to break from that was to admit the truth (i.e., that Landis had doped up. Apparently the uncle intended to coerce LeMond so he would not testify.

The article does not quote LeMond's testimony constituting the admission. In fact, what this article recites is more ambiguous. ("What good would it do?") There may be testimony the article did not include, so the issue remains murky from here.

http://www.velonews.com/news/fea/12271.0.html

hughgs
05-17-2007, 07:22 PM
One of the lab techs testified she knew the sample was Landis's.

http://www.lompocrecord.com/articles/2007/05/17/ap/sports/d8p6bqd01.txt

So much for the lab's rule about confidentiality and blind testing.

However, Greg LeMond has testified that Landis has admitted he doped up. Worse, he has accused Landis's uncle of witness tampering, threatening to reveal that LeMond had told Landis about being molested as a child, and that the way to break from that was to admit the truth (i.e., that Landis had doped up. Apparently the uncle intended to coerce LeMond so he would not testify.

The article does not quote LeMond's testimony constituting the admission. In fact, what this article recites is more ambiguous. ("What good would it do?") There may be testimony the article did not include, so the issue remains murky from here.

http://www.velonews.com/news/fea/12271.0.html

The Cyclingnews reports actually have some of the transcript and a report of the LeMond bomb:

http://www.cyclingnews.com/news.php?id=features/2007/landis_hearing_day3_07

http://www.cyclingnews.com/news.php?id=news/2007/may07/may18news

Jim3k
05-18-2007, 03:55 AM
http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-landis18may18,1,536933.story

Looks like that 'confession' LeMond was talking about isn't much of anything at all. It might even get stricken if LeMond won't submit to cross-examination.

LeMond seems like an odd witness to have been called in the first place. How does he add to the USADA's case if all he can cite is something ambiguous? He doesn't really know anything and he doesn't come across as much beyond a busybody who is sure he knows what happened, but has no real knowledge. Kind of a father-confessor wannabe. But why?

Besides, Landis and LeMond don't really know each other. That being so, why would Landis, if guilty, admit anything to LeMond...'implicitly' or otherwise? It doesn't seem likely to me. If LeMond was asking him to confess, regardless of actual guilt, at least one response would be the one Landis supposedly gave: "What good would it do?" That can easily be taken as not any sort of confession, but an 'Isn't that just pointless?' kind of answer. Neither a confession nor a denial, just an observation that LeMond's idea had no merit.

And, the 'threat' against LeMond looks like a severely misguided manager (not uncle) who got himself fired over it. Part of a dishonest culture? Excessive loyalty? Or just stupid? Well, maybe all three...

gus
05-18-2007, 04:04 AM
The Cyclingnews reports actually have some of the transcript and a report of the LeMond bomb:

http://www.cyclingnews.com/news.php?id=features/2007/landis_hearing_day3_07

http://www.cyclingnews.com/news.php?id=news/2007/may07/may18news

two lemond (wow, he's looking old!) questions:

1) How would he know that Landis is doping? It seems like he's assuming Landis is guilty, and just relating a story about encouraging him to come clean about it.

2) Didn't he do essentially the same to Armstrong?

Lavabe
05-18-2007, 04:16 AM
two lemond (wow, he's looking old!) questions:


2) Didn't he do essentially the same to Armstrong?

Gus: That was my first reaction. Here's a link:
http://www.velonews.com/race/int/articles/10099.0.html

Personally, I believe Lemond would not survive cross-examination.
Cheers,
Lavabe

MulletMan
05-18-2007, 09:30 AM
Real quick, the conversation between Greg and Floyd seems eerily similar to the conversation that Greg supposedly had with Lance. How can that be? How can it be that these two dopers came clean to a guy who clearly feels animosity towards them, and yet denied the truth to everyone else?

C'mon.

I will say, however, that this business of the threating phone call from Floyd's manager is disgusting and does not paint the camp in a flattering light. However, if you read about the reactions in court, it certainley appears that he acted on his own without the knowledge of, at the very least, Landis' attorneys.

JasonEvans
05-18-2007, 09:51 AM
Lemond has been angry and jealous of Lance since Lance grew to fame. Lemond could not handle the idea that any American could be better than he was (and he was great in his day) without doping.

I lost all respect for Lemond a long time ago. The notion that Landis confessed to him is ludicrous.

-Jason "I think Lemond wanted Armstrong to acknowledge Greg's contribution to making cycling bigger in the US but Lance was not interested in that-- the two of them do not get along from what I hear" Evans

Jim3k
05-19-2007, 02:19 PM
Yesterday, a lesser cyclist named Joe Papp testified that he had been suspended for using synthetic testosterone and that he used a gel to apply it after having cleared the drug control stand. He had been called to demonstrate how cyclists got away with beating drug control.


Reaching into his jacket pocket to show a packet of the testosterone gel he used, Papp refuted both Landis theories _ saying it was easy to stay below the threshold of a positive test with the gel, and claiming the gel helped him greatly in recovering between stages.

"You can compete in UCI-sanctioned stage races like a 2,000-kilometer-long race with drug testing every day, and you can race and win and be on drugs and not test positive," Papp said in interviews after his testimony.

He said it was easy to get away with having allowed amounts of testosterone in his system if he timed it right. After leaving doping control, he could simply go to a private place and rub the gel into his chest.

http://www.lompocrecord.com/articles/2007/05/18/ap/sports/d8p7a5oo0.txt
(scroll down for report on Papp's testimony)

This testimony seems odd to me. I've never heard of a drug that can be successfully entered into the body via the skin. Sure, there are some pain and muscle relaxers that can be affected by skin application, but I'm not aware of any stimulants. Moreover, testosterone is not regarded as a restorative that I'm aware of (given my lay background in the field).

Any hormone specialists out there that can intelligently comment on this guy's claim? Assuming Papp did such a thing, why would it serve to refresh strength?

Besides, what was it that Papp was showing the reporter? Does anyone know for sure that the packet of gel was testosterone? It sounds like a commercial product if it comes in its own packet. Can it be obtained from a health food or vitamin retailer? And if so, maybe there is literature on its efficacy.

And, of course, there is always the question of whether the product can be tied to Landis.

MulletMan
05-21-2007, 09:29 AM
Any hormone specialists out there that can intelligently comment on this guy's claim? Assuming Papp did such a thing, why would it serve to refresh strength?



Answering only this question specifically, the answer is yes. There are a number of hormone / steroid treatments that are applied topically in order to treat various conditions. A number are used to treat skin conditions that invovle hyperactive inflamatory response. Usually the steroid is contained in a petrolium jelly or something of the sort.

Jim3k
05-22-2007, 01:58 AM
The story on Monday's testimony is mainly about Landis's expert attacking the French labs procedures.

http://www.latimes.com/sports/olympics/la-sp-landis22may22,1,5621382.story


[The expert said] the laboratory work underlying the doping charge against the cyclist was so poor that the lab's findings amounted to "speculation."
* * *
Dr. Wolfram Meier-Augenstein, an associate professor at Queen's University, Belfast, precisely outlined all the errors and false assumptions he said were made by the Paris-based Laboratoire Nationale de Depistage du Dopage, or LNDD, in examining Landis' urine sample from a late stage of the 2006 race.

Most critically, he stated that LNDD's measurement of certain key metabolic ratios in the sample violated standards of accuracy laid down by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) in technical specifications.\

Jim3k
05-22-2007, 02:13 AM
citing a U Dub prof and doctor who says he is puzzled by the results of the 17th stage urine tests, asserting they make no sense. He is also dubious about testosterone as a performance enhancing drug, casting doubt on Joe Papp's testiomony from last week.

http://www.velonews.com/news/fea/12293.0.html


"It doesn't look like anything we've seen in men who have been administered exogenous testosterone," explained Amory, a professor at the University of Washington in Seattle who works with testosterone deficient patients. "I don't think [Landis's test results] confirm that doping occurred. I can't say there is a physiological process that would give these results. It's quite puzzling to me what exactly is going on here."

Amory wasn't being paid for his time (40-50 hours, he estimated). And for the last two and a half years, he's been a member of USADA's independent anti-doping board, a panel of experts that decides whether there is enough evidence to move forward with individual doping cases. He was recently reappointed for two additional years on the board.

Amory also questioned testosterone's legitimacy as a performance-enhancing drug for endurance athletes, saying that the kind of micro-dosing pro cyclist Joe Papp described in earlier testimony might allow an athlete to elude detection, but it wouldn't provide any noticeable benefit.

"There's no evidence that testosterone plays a role in augmenting endurance," Amory said, pointing to one scientific study that found testosterone had no more benefit than a placebo and that it did not aid in recovery.

g_olaf
05-22-2007, 03:48 PM
And, the 'threat' against LeMond looks like a severely misguided manager (not uncle) who got himself fired over it. Part of a dishonest culture? Excessive loyalty? Or just stupid? Well, maybe all three...


However, Landis was fully aware of the call (http://www.cyclingnews.com/news.php?id=features/2007/landis_hearing_day3_07)... Even if he didn't condone it, why wait until the next day to deal with the issue? He obviously did not take responsibility in this particular episode, so why should I assume that he would take responsibility when it comes to saying no to doping?

Jim3k
05-22-2007, 09:35 PM
However, Landis was fully aware of the call (http://www.cyclingnews.com/news.php?id=features/2007/landis_hearing_day3_07)... Even if he didn't condone it, why wait until the next day to deal with the issue? He obviously did not take responsibility in this particular episode, so why should I assume that he would take responsibility when it comes to saying no to doping?

I think Landis agrees that he was in the room when Geoghegan made the call, but occupied with something else. He says he only heard a portion of the call and didn't quite understand the context until the blow-up. I could chase a link for this, but I think Landis already testified about it on direct.

Cross was held until today. Awaiting the reports.

hughgs
05-22-2007, 11:16 PM
However, Landis was fully aware of the call (http://www.cyclingnews.com/news.php?id=features/2007/landis_hearing_day3_07)... Even if he didn't condone it, why wait until the next day to deal with the issue? He obviously did not take responsibility in this particular episode, so why should I assume that he would take responsibility when it comes to saying no to doping?

There is absolutely no reason to assume that Landis would take responsibility for not doping.

However, the decision regarding Floyd's doping will be based on the whether the discrepancies pointed out by his lawyers can be shown to be irrelevant to the positive finding. If the arbitration committee thinks the discrepancies didn't matter then they hopefully rule him guilty. If they think that the discrepancies are large enough then they hopefully find him not guilty. I see no reason that the arbitration committee should care about Floyd's character. A good decision in this case has to be based on the presented facts, not on how responsible Floyd is.

Jim3k
05-23-2007, 12:15 AM
http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-landis23may23,1,6832982.story

If the LAT story is accurate, then I think the USADA attorneys have made a mistake. Concentrating on the Geoghegan matter is worthless as attempting to discredit Landis. Why did you wait? Why did you wear black? All dopy questions and somewhat insulting to the intelligence of the arbitration panel.

The panel is not a bunch of yokels and probably don't care a whit about what Geoghegan did or didn't do, now. They already know and Landis is not defending Geoghegan's conduct. Plus, in the final analysis, it means nothing, because the issue which makes or breaks this case is the validity of the tests run by the French doping lab.

The fact is, however, that the USADA lawyers don't have all that much to work with concerning Landis's credibility. He told his story, denied the doping, claiming he would never have done anything illegal and that's that. Cross-examination can't crack that if they have no evidence to counter his testimony. It appears they don't. Relying on the Geoghegan incident is a dead end for them in a case where they can't crack Landis's fundamental denials. They should have let well enough alone.

Moreover, in the morning, accoring to the SF Chron, Landis found another witness to trash the lab's performance. (Scroll down)

http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2007/05/22/sports/s180917D68.DTL


LAB WORKERS GONE WILD: Davis ripped lab technicians Cynthia Mongongu and Claire Frelat, saying they "clearly did not understand the instrument" they used to manually reprocess data and claiming that some of their testimony "shows a complete lack of understanding of the instrument."

Jim3k
05-23-2007, 10:02 PM
SF Chron: http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2007/05/23/sports/s182352D56.DTL

Now the wait.

Jim3k
05-24-2007, 02:08 AM
http://www.latimes.com/sports/la-sp-landis24may24,1,7291736.story

JasonEvans
05-24-2007, 12:23 PM
Does anyone think Landis is guilty?

Does anyone think the panel will find him innocent though?

-Jason "I thik Floyd conducted a horrid PR campaign in all this-- he could have a lot more public opinion on his side" Evans

cato
05-24-2007, 01:37 PM
Does anyone think Landis is guilty?


Yeah. I haven't followed this closely, and it wouldn't really matter if I did, because I don't know anything about the technical side. But Landis sure acted like he was guilty, and absent further evidence, that's enough for me.

hughgs
05-24-2007, 03:00 PM
Yeah. I haven't followed this closely, and it wouldn't really matter if I did, because I don't know anything about the technical side. But Landis sure acted like he was guilty, and absent further evidence, that's enough for me.

OK, so they have this big hearing where they present a bunch of evidence but because Landis "acted" guilty he's guilty. How about posting something useful to the thread, rather than bogging it down with naive comments.

hughgs
05-24-2007, 03:04 PM
Does anyone think Landis is guilty?

Does anyone think the panel will find him innocent though?

-Jason "I thik Floyd conducted a horrid PR campaign in all this-- he could have a lot more public opinion on his side" Evans

I don't know if Landis is guilty, but given what's been reported I don't think USADA has shown the burden of proof necessary to say Landis doped. I think it will be quite interesting to see the arbitration committee report. Which "facts" were seen as credible, etc.

cato
05-24-2007, 03:31 PM
OK, so they have this big hearing where they present a bunch of evidence but because Landis "acted" guilty he's guilty. How about posting something useful to the thread, rather than bogging it down with naive comments.

Ah. Back to the welcoming arms of DBR, where a simple answer to the question, "how many people think Landis is guilty" is met with a condescending and belittling post from someone who thinks he's an expert, and wishes the unwashed masses wouldn't mess up his nice little thread. It is nice to have a reminder of one of the reasons that the boards are so much less interesting than they were 5 years ago. Thank you, hughgs.

I've probably already spent too much time responding to your pot shot, but would you care to share whether you think he's guilty or not? And why? I'm not asking whether you think that the burden of proof has been satisfied. The arbitration panel can decide that.

I'm asking you whether you think that Landis is telling the truth.

Call me naive all you want, but in everyday situations, when I'm trying to figure out if someone is telling the truth, I look at their actions. Someone who starts spouting excuses that make no sense immediately after being accused of cheating is, well, acting like they cheated. And someone who sits by idly (at best) while a key member of their team engages in the most despicable type of intimidation is, well, acting like they cheated. How would you characterize those actions, hughgs?

feldspar
05-24-2007, 03:36 PM
It is nice to have a reminder of one of the reasons that the boards are so much less interesting than they were 5 years ago.

You are correct, but in all fairness, the boards (OT and PPB) are certainly more interesting than they were two years ago, so we've got that going for us.

cato
05-24-2007, 03:46 PM
You are correct, but in all fairness, the boards (OT and PPB) are certainly more interesting than they were two years ago, so we've got that going for us.

Ah, but the main board. How the mighty have fallen. Oh for the bygone days of game previews by Carlos, analysis by stickdog . . .

feldspar
05-24-2007, 03:46 PM
Ah, but the main board. How the mighty have fallen. Oh for the bygone days of game previews by Carlos, analysis by stickdog . . .

Cruel...you're just cruel for bringing that up. :(

hughgs
05-24-2007, 10:15 PM
Ah. Back to the welcoming arms of DBR, where a simple answer to the question, "how many people think Landis is guilty" is met with a condescending and belittling post from someone who thinks he's an expert, and wishes the unwashed masses wouldn't mess up his nice little thread. It is nice to have a reminder of one of the reasons that the boards are so much less interesting than they were 5 years ago. Thank you, hughgs.

I've probably already spent too much time responding to your pot shot, but would you care to share whether you think he's guilty or not? And why? I'm not asking whether you think that the burden of proof has been satisfied. The arbitration panel can decide that.

I'm asking you whether you think that Landis is telling the truth.

Call me naive all you want, but in everyday situations, when I'm trying to figure out if someone is telling the truth, I look at their actions. Someone who starts spouting excuses that make no sense immediately after being accused of cheating is, well, acting like they cheated. And someone who sits by idly (at best) while a key member of their team engages in the most despicable type of intimidation is, well, acting like they cheated. How would you characterize those actions, hughgs?

It makes no difference whether Landis is guilty or not, only he knows that and no amount of debating will change that fact. The real question should be, and I've alluded to this above, is whether the arbitration panel thinks he has shifted the burden of proof.

The reason I took issue with your post is that you made it seem that you hadn't read any of the posts "I haven't this closely ... ", you obviously weren't interested in reading the material "... and it wouldn't matter if I did ..." and then proceeded to pronounce Landis guilty because he "... sure acted like he was guilty ..." You then quashed further debate by insinuating that you wouldn't even bother to look at the material that was presented "... and absent further evidence ...". So, there innumerable articles on the trial but you make it quite clear that you aren't interested in reading the material but will decide guilt based on your feeling. That to me is naive.

gus
05-25-2007, 07:26 AM
It makes no difference whether Landis is guilty or not, only he knows that and no amount of debating will change that fact. The real question should be, and I've alluded to this above, is whether the arbitration panel thinks he has shifted the burden of proof.

It seems like your issue is with Jason, who asked the question, and not Cato who gave a response.


...you obviously weren't interested in reading the material ... You then quashed further debate by insinuating that you wouldn't even bother to look at the material that was presented

I guess Cato edited out those parts?


"... and absent further evidence ...". So, there innumerable articles on the trial but you make it quite clear that you aren't interested in reading the material but will decide guilt based on your feeling. That to me is naive.

Do you think OJ is guilty?

cato
05-25-2007, 11:27 AM
It makes no difference whether Landis is guilty or not, only he knows that and no amount of debating will change that fact.

So, you don't have any opinion on whether he cheated?




The reason I took issue with your post is that you made it seem that you hadn't read any of the posts "I haven't this closely ... ", To be clear, I read all of the posts, a number of articles, and have listened to chattering on the subject. So this is incorrect:


you obviously weren't interested in reading the material

However, while I have followed the topic, I have not followed it closely -- at least, not compared to people like (a) Mullet, who is passionate about cycling, and knowledgeable about the subject at hand, (b) you, also passionate about cycling, (c) Jason Evans, who closely follows something like 100 different subjects at any given time, and (d) Jim3K, who has obviously spent a lot of time on this subject.


"... and it wouldn't matter if I did ..."

Hey, I'm just a simple country lawyer. I have no technical background, and do not understand the science involved. I can't judge the value of the various experts' testimony. Besides, most of this information is being filtered through different journalists. I do not implictly trust journalists to get it right, or explain it in a way that I can understand.


and then proceeded to pronounce Landis guilty because he "... sure acted like he was guilty ..."

I did not pronounce the guy guilty; I shared by opinion. I'm neither judge nor jury, so am not bound by evidentiary standards or burdens of proof. My opinion will have no effect on whether or not Landis gets to keep his title, or is the first to be stripped of it.


You then quashed further debate by insinuating that you wouldn't even bother to look at the material that was presented "... and absent further evidence ...". So, there innumerable articles on the trial but you make it quite clear that you aren't interested in reading the material but will decide guilt based on your feeling. That to me is naive.

I didn't quash further debate. I noted the basis for my opinion, and specifically stated that I could change my opinion if additional information was presented. If anyone tried to quash debate, it was you, telling me to get off your nice little thread.

By the way, you didn't answer my questions. What do you think about Landis' actions? You keep throwing around the word "naive", but in the real world you have to make decisions based on the information presented. Based on these sets of facts, do you think he's guilty or not? Did Landis act how you would expect an innocent man to act?

MulletMan
05-25-2007, 02:38 PM
Hey, I'm just a simple country lawyer. I have no technical background, and do not understand the science involved. I can't judge the value of the various experts' testimony. Besides, most of this information is being filtered through different journalists. I do not implictly trust journalists to get it right, or explain it in a way that I can understand.


Sorry... this just reminded me of The Unfrozen Caveman Lawyer from SNL.

So I think that these last few responses are pretty interesting. I really don't think that the arbitration hearing changed anyone's opinion of what hapened. Now I haven't thought Landis' doped from about three days after the story broke... up until that point I wasn't sure... but all the last 10 days have done is shore up my beliefs that the science in the lab was horrendously flawed. Unfortunately, as George mentioned above, there are likely only a few people who know the real truth, and they will probably take it to thier graves. (Of course, I suppose Bjarne Riis thought that as well.)

What's interesting to me is that the evidence or lack thereof in this case was never going to change anyone's opinion at this late stage (I mean hell, its almost been a year!). All this hearing was going to do was say whether or not USADA/WADA is able to follow procedures correctly in order to figure out if people are doping or not.

I think Landis had it right though... the damage is done, and he is pretty much going to be through. He will never be able to race again. The only thing he's got left is the inevitable book deal. I hope he makes his money off that because sponsorships, etc. are out the window.

cato
05-25-2007, 03:05 PM
So I think that these last few responses are pretty interesting. I really don't think that the arbitration hearing changed anyone's opinion of what hapened.

Actually, I was begining to think that Landis might have a point, that he was being railroaded . . . and then the LaMond thing came out. After that, you either have to believe that (1) Landis is a dirty bastard who will do anything to save his title, or (2) he deplored what happened, but stayed silent out of hope of saving the reputation of his friend. I find it very difficult to believe the second choice. Am I missing something here, Mullet?

hughgs
05-25-2007, 03:06 PM
It seems like your issue is with Jason, who asked the question, and not Cato who gave a response.



I guess Cato edited out those parts?



Do you think OJ is guilty?

No, my issue is with Cato's response and I think I have clearly stated what my reactions were to his entire post.

And, I've thought quite a bit about the question of guilt or innocence lately. I've come to the conclusion that the judicial system isn't about actually finding guilt or innocence. Guilty is demonstrating that it is "very likely" (replace that phrase with your favorite legalese) that the person committed the crime. Innocence is not meeting that standard. And while there are always those circumstances where you have a film of someone robbing a store and he can be identified 100% I don't believe that those types of crimes are prevalent.

And so, to bring this back on topic, the guilt or innocence of Landis is determined by whether one side has met the necessary burden of proof. Whether Landis is truly guilty or innocent we'll probably never know.

For the record, at the time of the Simpson case I thought he was guilty. But, that was based on my naive understanding of the facts that were presented to the jury. As far as Landis is concerned I'm withholding judgment until I see what the arbitration committee presents.

cato
05-25-2007, 04:11 PM
No, my issue is with Cato's response and I think I have clearly stated what my reactions were to his entire post.

So, you're standing by this: "How about posting something useful to the thread, rather than bogging it down with naive comments"? Classy.

By the way, how can you reconcile these two statements?


And, I've thought quite a bit about the question of guilt or innocence lately. I've come to the conclusion that the judicial system isn't about actually finding guilt or innocence.

and:


As far as Landis is concerned I'm withholding judgment until I see what the arbitration committee presents.

If the judicial system isn't about actually finding guilt or innocence, why are you going to wait for their findings? Do you really not have any feelings one way or the other?

Finally, here's something you might find useful. You are incorrect when you say:


Guilty is demonstrating that it is "very likely" (replace that phrase with your favorite legalese) that the person committed the crime. Innocence is not meeting that standard.

Courts are not in the business of pronouncing people innocent -- they merely decide whether someone is guilty or not guilty.* There is a big difference.




*In a non-criminal context, courts and arbitration panels simply deal in the world of liable and non-liable, and similar findings.

g_olaf
05-25-2007, 06:23 PM
I really don't think that the arbitration hearing changed anyone's opinion of what happened.

However, the near daily confessions from other riders (http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2007/05/25/international/i120228D31.DTL) are almost certainly swaying peoples opinions.

hughgs
05-25-2007, 09:23 PM
So, you don't have any opinion on whether he cheated?

To be clear, I read all of the posts, a number of articles, and have listened to chattering on the subject. So this is incorrect:



However, while I have followed the topic, I have not followed it closely -- at least, not compared to people like (a) Mullet, who is passionate about cycling, and knowledgeable about the subject at hand, (b) you, also passionate about cycling, (c) Jason Evans, who closely follows something like 100 different subjects at any given time, and (d) Jim3K, who has obviously spent a lot of time on this subject.



Hey, I'm just a simple country lawyer. I have no technical background, and do not understand the science involved. I can't judge the value of the various experts' testimony. Besides, most of this information is being filtered through different journalists. I do not implictly trust journalists to get it right, or explain it in a way that I can understand.



I did not pronounce the guy guilty; I shared by opinion. I'm neither judge nor jury, so am not bound by evidentiary standards or burdens of proof. My opinion will have no effect on whether or not Landis gets to keep his title, or is the first to be stripped of it.



I didn't quash further debate. I noted the basis for my opinion, and specifically stated that I could change my opinion if additional information was presented. If anyone tried to quash debate, it was you, telling me to get off your nice little thread.

By the way, you didn't answer my questions. What do you think about Landis' actions? You keep throwing around the word "naive", but in the real world you have to make decisions based on the information presented. Based on these sets of facts, do you think he's guilty or not? Did Landis act how you would expect an innocent man to act?

So, you'll change your opinion "... if additional information was presented ...", but you're going to ignore the information that was presented at the arbitration panel because you don't understand it or you don't trust it. How does that view further the debate? That's my problem with your initial post and I don't see where you've addressed that here. It's fine if that's what you want to do and think, I'm not your wife/SO, but it seems that following that line of reasoning doesn't allow anyone to ask questions about your opinions. And that quashes debate.

I've given my opinion on Landis' guilt or innocence below. I'd prefer to answer any questions about that there. I'm having a hard enough time trying to keep things straight as it is. If you want to cut and paste the last paragraph there I would be more than happy to answer any questions or contradictions that you see.

hughgs
05-25-2007, 09:32 PM
So, you're standing by this: "How about posting something useful to the thread, rather than bogging it down with naive comments"? Classy.

By the way, how can you reconcile these two statements?



and:



If the judicial system isn't about actually finding guilt or innocence, why are you going to wait for their findings? Do you really not have any feelings one way or the other?

Finally, here's something you might find useful. You are incorrect when you say:



Courts are not in the business of pronouncing people innocent -- they merely decide whether someone is guilty or not guilty.* There is a big difference.




*In a non-criminal context, courts and arbitration panels simply deal in the world of liable and non-liable, and similar findings.

I have no feelings either way about Landis. If he's guilty I'm not going to stop riding my bike, and if he's innocent then I'm not going to buy a ton Phonak stuff. His guilt or innocence has no bearing on my life other than it's in a sport I follow.

As far as the guilty or not guilty statement. You've taken my words a bit out of context. I stated that it was my conclusion and (hopefully) did not present it as a fact. Besides all you've done is substitute "not guilty" for innocent. Maybe in a strictly legal sense you're correct, but I didn't present my conclusions as a legal argument or myself as a legal expert. Since I don't expect to spend any time in court arguing with a judge about guilt or innocence I suspect that I can freely interchange the words.

Sorry I couldn't intersperse our comments. I realize that may make things hard to follow, but hopefully you can see which statements I'm answering.

Lavabe
06-01-2007, 01:25 PM
The Int'l Cycling Union is now considering granting amnesty to admitted dopers:
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2007/more/06/01/bc.cyc.uci.doping.ap/index.html

Cheers,
Lavabe

hughgs
06-02-2007, 06:20 PM
The Int'l Cycling Union is now considering granting amnesty to admitted dopers:
http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2007/more/06/01/bc.cyc.uci.doping.ap/index.html

Cheers,
Lavabe

I'm kind of torn with this decision. First, off what does it really buy anyone? It's a given that most people think that doping was pervasive in the past, so this decision would only affect current cyclist. Then, what would admitting that you doped in a previous really do for you? Would it stop other cyclists from doping? What about the results (and money) from those races in which cyclists admit to doping? I just don't see it changing anything.

Another issue is if you have an amnesty, does this mean that those with positive tests would be punished more? Until we see what the Landis arbitration committee says I'm not sure that the confidence in the laboratories are high enough to be accepted by cyclists.

On the other hand, I'm all for admitting one's mistakes and suffering the consequences. Thanks for posting the news.

MulletMan
06-04-2007, 09:39 AM
Actually, I was begining to think that Landis might have a point, that he was being railroaded . . . and then the LaMond thing came out. After that, you either have to believe that (1) Landis is a dirty bastard who will do anything to save his title, or (2) he deplored what happened, but stayed silent out of hope of saving the reputation of his friend. I find it very difficult to believe the second choice. Am I missing something here, Mullet?

Sorry, I haven't looked at this thread in a while. Knowing what I know of Landis' upbringing and background, I find it hard to believe that he was fully in the know about that call. And by that I mean that he knew what had been said. Perhaps he wanted to save his friend's hide, but in reality, I feel like he'd have cut him loose if he really knew everythign that had been said. Maybe not. Maybe he is a dirty bastard, and maybe he did dope.

Or maybe the French were so f888ing ticked that they never got Lance that they figured Landis was the next best thing.

Here's my problem... eventhough there seem to be inconsistencies with Landis' story, there is no doubt in my mnd that the lab screwed with the test results. They didn't follow the protocols, there's significant differences in the samples from test to test, and MDs can't even figure how one by-product can be so elevated while others are not... this also varying from sample to sample. The science is so bad that it seems to tell me that he DIDN'T use testosterone.

Now... something else? We'll never know. Ever.

cato
05-20-2010, 01:01 AM
It makes no difference whether Landis is guilty or not, only he knows that and no amount of debating will change that fact.

No more ducking it: Landis was a cheat (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703691804575255410855321120.html?m od=djemalertNEWS).

gus
05-20-2010, 10:21 AM
No more ducking it: Landis was a cheat (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703691804575255410855321120.html?m od=djemalertNEWS).

Simple country lawyer my donkey. You're Paul Ekman, aren't you?

roywhite
05-20-2010, 10:33 AM
No more ducking it: Landis was a cheat (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703691804575255410855321120.html?m od=djemalertNEWS).

How much credence do we give his accusations about others? He could be right, but Floyd's level of credibility ain't much these days.

JasonEvans
05-20-2010, 11:25 AM
How much credence do we give his accusations about others? He could be right, but Floyd's level of credibility ain't much these days.

The International Cycling governing body (whatever they are called, I forget) is dismissing him and saying his accusations have no evidence and no cred.

--Jason "I have a hard time trusting him now after how hard he protested his innocence" Evans

A-Tex Devil
05-20-2010, 12:01 PM
The International Cycling governing body (whatever they are called, I forget) is dismissing him and saying his accusations have no evidence and no cred.

--Jason "I have a hard time trusting him now after how hard he protested his innocence" Evans

This all reeks of someone who is broke and has a book coming out...... just saying.

g_olaf
05-20-2010, 12:58 PM
The International Cycling governing body (whatever they are called, I forget) is dismissing him and saying his accusations have no evidence and no cred.

--Jason "I have a hard time trusting him now after how hard he protested his innocence" Evans

My guess is that given the rumblings over the years, he is probably correct. However, like everyone else, a cyclist is innocent until proven guilty. Lance hasn't failed a test, so it's all just idle speculation.

brevity
05-20-2010, 01:00 PM
How much credence do we give his accusations about others? He could be right, but Floyd's level of credibility ain't much these days.

Well, people can choose to believe one of the following:

1. One guy in an entire sport known for rule breaking and bending acted alone.
2. One guy gets all the headlines, but is just an example of a greater problem.

I see competitive cycling, like baseball, in a weird limbo state right now because fan enjoyment is tempered with a deep distrust. Maybe one problem is that the rapid advancement of medicine conflicts with the (legal-oriented) slow process of rule making. Where does a sport stand when it makes the most sense to redefine the concept of purity?

Oh, and I'm not excusing Floyd Landis in any of this. Maybe his allegations are true, but he doesn't deserve to be believed.

gus
05-20-2010, 01:31 PM
My guess is that given the rumblings over the years, he is probably correct. However, like everyone else, a cyclist is innocent until proven guilty. Lance hasn't failed a test, so it's all just idle speculation.

I think Armstrong was clean. My reasoning is simple: the French hated that he kept winning, and were desperate to prove he cheated. And they failed. Repeatedly.

Just like with the scientific method, you can't prove a hypothesis, but numerous (and sometimes unethical) tests have utterly failed to prove its inverse.

Udaman
05-20-2010, 01:40 PM
I like Armstrong, but personally I think he cheated. Why? Because as one cyclist put it (can't remember his name, but I think it was that great guy from Spain who kept barely losing to him)

(paraphrased)

The guy has to be cheating, because we're all cheating and he's beating us.

g_olaf
05-20-2010, 02:02 PM
I like Armstrong, but personally I think he cheated. Why? Because as one cyclist put it (can't remember his name, but I think it was that great guy from Spain who kept barely losing to him)

(paraphrased)

The guy has to be cheating, because we're all cheating and he's beating us.

Armstrongs response: "He has no proof, Its just our word against theirs and we like our word. We like where we stand.


Like all sports, cyclists played within the framework of the rules, enforcement mechanisms and the punishment for breaking those rules. As others have opined, it really doesn't matter what Armstrong or Hincappie, or Indurain took or didn't take. They weren't caught. End of story.

In basketball, is the "hack-a-Shaq" defense unethical because you are purposely breaking a rule? No, it is a calculated act within a framework. If you don't want players intentionally fouling someone, you change the rule (3 freethrows instead of 2, free-throw plus ball out of bounds).

In cycling and baseball the same thing happened. The solution isn't a witch-hunt. The solution is to tighten testing and increase punishments. To the extent that this has occured, both sports are now cleaner.

allenmurray
05-20-2010, 02:14 PM
In basketball, is the "hack-a-Shaq" defense unethical because you are purposely breaking a rule? No, it is a calculated act within a framework. If you don't want players intentionally fouling someone, you change the rule (3 freethrows instead of 2, free-throw plus ball out of bounds).


Not so sure that is a fair comparison to the illegal use of PEDs. In the "Hack-a-Shaq" example the defensive team wants to get caught. Getting caught, and having the prescribed penalty imposed, is better than the other possibility (a sure dunk). It is like the intentional walk in baseball - you'd rather give up the small risk (runner on base) than the larger one (extra base hit)

In a doping case you are hoping not to get caught. You are not breaking a rule (fouling the offensive player) and accepting the penalty - you are breaking a rule and doing everything possible to hide it.

g_olaf
05-20-2010, 02:21 PM
Not so sure that is a fair comparison to the illegal use of PEDs. In the "Hack-a-Shaq" example the defensive team wants to get caught. Getting caught, and having the prescribed penalty imposed, is better than the other possibility (a sure dunk). It is like the intentional walk in baseball - you'd rather give up the small risk (runner on base) than the larger one (extra base hit)

In a doping case you are hoping not to get caught. You are not breaking a rule (fouling the offensive player) and accepting the penalty - you are breaking a rule and doing everything possible to hide it.

OK... but I think that we could certainly agree that parallel examples exist... Palming the ball, clearing out, moving picks, hooking, pulling on someones jersey when the ref isn't looking. As a player, you recognize the risk of being caught, the penalty if you are versus the advantage you gain if you get away with it. Same thing with doping. In an imaginary world where 100% of dopers would be caught, and if the penalty were a lifetime ban, no one would attempt it.

Acymetric
05-20-2010, 02:23 PM
My guess is that given the rumblings over the years, he is probably correct. However, like everyone else, a cyclist is innocent until proven guilty. Lance hasn't failed a test, so it's all just idle speculation.

That is only true in US courts, individuals are free to set their own threshold for what is enough to consider someone "guilty."

I give Lance the benefit of the doubt because he's never been caught, but if I had to bet money on what the real answer is I would bet that he had cheated at least once.

Either way, his story is inspirational and his work with Livestrong has been great.

allenmurray
05-20-2010, 02:49 PM
OK... but I think that we could certainly agree that parallel examples exist... Palming the ball, clearing out, moving picks, hooking, pulling on someones jersey when the ref isn't looking. As a player, you recognize the risk of being caught, the penalty if you are versus the advantage you gain if you get away with it. Same thing with doping. In an imaginary world where 100% of dopers would be caught, and if the penalty were a lifetime ban, no one would attempt it.

Agreed. I just thought the Shaq example wasn't a good one.

In all sports players do what they can get away within the context of the game. PEDs are done outside of the game, while hiding (and sometimes involve not just violations of rules, but violations of law - there are many medications used for doping that are only legally allowed to be administered by or under the supervision of a phsycian).

RPS
05-20-2010, 05:25 PM
The guy has to be cheating, because we're all cheating and he's beating us.My view is close to this one. I am pretty sure Armstrong cheated and cheated routinely, consistent with the ethos of the sport. That ethos is largely why I pay so much less attention to cycling than I used to.

Olympic Fan
05-20-2010, 07:17 PM
I don't know whether or not to believe that Lance Armstrong cheated or not -- but I do know that I will never believe a word out of the mouth of Floyd Landis.

When I saw this thread and saw the 2007 posts defending him, it makes me ill (although all those posts represent is our natural inclination to give people the benefit of the doubt).

But check out this article by Dan Wenzel:

http://sports.yahoo.com/sc/news;_ylt=AvC4gn4KXDGAaMO36X9H7P85nYcB?slug=dw-floydlandis052010

Just to summarize: Floyd Landis knew a dark secret about anti-doping activist Greg LeMond -- that LaMond had been sexually abused by his uncle when he was a boy. Landis told his agent that secret and just before LeMond was to testify against Landis, the agent called LeMond and pretended to be the uncle who abused him and threatened to be at the hearing it LeMond appeared.

Landis knew about the attempt at intimidation and did noting -- until LeMond responded by revealing the secret ... and vowing to testify.

Frankly, the evidence is that Landis will do anything and say anything to protect himself. There may be reasons to believe Armstrong is a doper, but as far as I'm concerned, Landis' self-serving statements are not among those reasons.

hughgs
05-20-2010, 07:33 PM
I think Armstrong was clean. My reasoning is simple: the French hated that he kept winning, and were desperate to prove he cheated. And they failed. Repeatedly.

Just like with the scientific method, you can't prove a hypothesis, but numerous (and sometimes unethical) tests have utterly failed to prove its inverse.

A small correction, you can (dis)prove a hypothesis, you can only disprove a theory.

But, your overall point is correct. Tests haven't proven that he's taken drugs and therefore Armstrong should have the presumption of innocence.

hughgs
05-20-2010, 07:47 PM
No more ducking it: Landis was a cheat (http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703691804575255410855321120.html?m od=djemalertNEWS).

Given the history of this thread why would you think I was ducking the question of whether Landis doped?

As I responded to you before:

"I have no feelings either way about Landis. If he's guilty I'm not going to stop riding my bike, and if he's innocent then I'm not going to buy a ton Phonak stuff. His guilt or innocence has no bearing on my life other than it's in a sport I follow."

I'm not ducking whether Landis doped or not, I simply don't care if he's guilty or innocent.

hughgs
05-20-2010, 07:50 PM
The International Cycling governing body (whatever they are called, I forget) is dismissing him and saying his accusations have no evidence and no cred.

--Jason "I have a hard time trusting him now after how hard he protested his innocence" Evans

The UCI has been accused of (and denied) hiding a positive doping test:

http://www.cyclingnews.com/news/uci-rejects-landis-accusation-about-a-concealed-doping-test

PumpkinFunk
05-21-2010, 09:26 AM
My view is close to this one. I am pretty sure Armstrong cheated and cheated routinely, consistent with the ethos of the sport. That ethos is largely why I pay so much less attention to cycling than I used to.

That ethos also disappeared in the early 2000s when drug testing improved and people got caught. Did Lance dope? Yeah, I'd bet on it. Did he do anything that his competitors weren't doing? Eh, probably not. That's the thing about it that you have to remember - everyone else did it, too. Only one other person who was also on a podium with him was neither suspected of nor caught for doping, Andreas Kloden. That alone is damning evidence.

RPS
05-21-2010, 10:04 AM
That ethos also disappeared in the early 2000s when drug testing improved and people got caught.Or maybe they improved their ability to cheat undetected.


Did Lance dope? Yeah, I'd bet on it. Did he do anything that his competitors weren't doing? Eh, probably not. That's the thing about it that you have to remember - everyone else did it, too.So? I'm disgusted by the baseball steroid guys and D1 college coaches who cheat, even though MLB, college football and college hoops all have an ethos of dishonesty.


Only one other person who was also on a podium with him was neither suspected of nor caught for doping, Andreas Kloden. That alone is damning evidence.And is why the sport has lost its appeal for me.

Ping Lin
05-21-2010, 12:35 PM
Alex Massie (http://www.spectator.co.uk/alexmassie/6015935/is-lance-armstrong-a-cheat.thtml) has more on the issue, although it's not as interesting as his estimation of where Armstrong would rank in terms of the all-time cyclists. (The tl;dr version: good but not the greatest.)

My personal take is that he almost certainly did dope, but then everybody else was at the time as well and he still managed to beat them consistently.

I used to not think very much of Armstrong, but I admit my opinion of him has softened with his relatively graceful support of Contador in last year's race.

g_olaf
05-21-2010, 02:39 PM
"You cannot compete in the Tour de France on mineral water alone" -Jacques Anquetil