The United States Department of Agriculture
Lance Armstrong and President Bush Riding Together at Bush's Crawford Texas Ranch
Ending world hunger sure sounds noble. But sorry; SOCIALIST POLICIES and huge bureaucracies are never going to end world hunger (just look at Stalin's Collective Farming Program). Ultimately, they are going to make the problem worse! But I regress. The purpose of writing today's column is not to discuss America's "Creeping Socialism", but to discuss the role of the USDA spending your hard-earned tax dollars on searching out professional athletes who may or may not have used PED's (Performance Enhancing Drugs) during their athletic careers.
Unless you live under a rock, you have heard that Lance Armstrong was stripped of each and every one of his record seven (7) Tour de France titles. If you know anything at all about cycling, you know that it's rife with cheaters ---- a sport where virtually everyone who is anyone is doping. Armstrong, who "passed" all of his drug tests over his illustrious career, was supposed to be the sport's vestal virgin --- an angel of light in a sport full of liars, cheaters, and darkness. Yeah, these guys can lie alright. I remember falling for Floyd Landis' schtick ---- and then proof came out that he doped like everyone else.
But Lance is not the first to feel the wrath of our federal government concerning PED's. They also went after Barry Bonds (they lost), Roger Clemens (they also lost), as well as Marion Jones and Victor Conte (they won --- sort of). And in the process they spent tens of millions of your hard earned dollars. For what, and to what end? This whole thing is ridiculous! What the heck is our government ---- particularly the branch of government that deals with agriculture ----- going after professional athletes for? In light of the terrible drought that half of America's farmers are suffering under, and the subsequent skyrocketing of food prices that consumers are surely going to feel next year, the USDA needs to stick to what it knows; stick to what is useful. They need to be working in the ag field! They should be shuffling corn away from ethanol plants or at the very least, doing something useful to help farmers ------ not parading around the Dan Patrick show talking about how they finally got Armstrong and this time they are really going to make him pay for his sins.
For Pete's sake, Armstrong doped. We already knew he doped. Despite the fact that he passed 500 drug tests, in our heart of hearts we all know that he cheated. Who cares? They cannot even figure out who to give his gold medals to because everyone who finished behind him are also known dopers / cheaters as well. Oh, and by the way; Lance is more popular today than he ever was. I am not sure that most people love or respect him any less because the government took away his medals and replaced them with asterisks. And how does that "stripped medal" thing work anyway? Are we supposed to somehow forget that Lance was history's greatest cyclist or that he really did finish first in those seven races? What the USDA did was make Lance a bigger hero than he already was. The asterisks have turned him into a living legend.