This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sun Oct 14, 2012 7:57 am

il padrone wrote:So, amongst other tests, all winners are tested? As in cycling. That'd mean about 50% of active players are tested every week.



I doubt that this is done.

There are over 500 AFL players and about 200 games per season. A lot to cover with in and out of competition testing just for AFL, let alone all other elite sports in Australia.

ASADA conducts around 6,000 tests per year* for all sports.

You do the maths.


* Split between those funded by their own govt provided resources and those that are contracted to them by sporting bodies and individuals.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby find_bruce » Sun Oct 14, 2012 8:33 am

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:Marijuana is not a banned substance out of competition. Just ask Michael Phelps.

There are many things on the WADA list that are not performance enhancing, but then that is not the one and only criteria for substances or methods to be included on the list. And nor should it be, otherwise food and water would be on the list.

I wish people would actually read the WADA code before commenting on it.

Yes I know marijuana is not banned out of competition & that reinforces the point. The other drugs banned only for in competition use, stimulents, narcotics and glucocorticosteroids all have an element of performance enhancement.

& what makes you think I have not actually read the WADA code Alex ? :roll:
World Anti-Doping Code wrote:A substance shall be considered for inclusion on the Prohibited List if the substance is a masking agent or meets two of the following three
criteria:
(1) it has the potential to enhance or enhances sport performance;
(2) it represents a potential or actual health risk; or
(3) it is contrary to the spirit of sport.

It clearly does not meet 1 & I struggle to see how it meets either of the other 2 - while there are health risks, there is nothing to indicate that they are worse than tobacco products.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby ColinOldnCranky » Sun Oct 14, 2012 8:59 am

The IOC banned marihuana (or signaled intent to do so) late last century. Tat got me to thinking, what about when the Olympics are held in a Muslim country? Shouldn't alcohol be similarly listed?

Marihuana shouldn't be relevant unless there is some net benefit to taking it. Issues like that should be between the athletes, their adoring public, their sponsors and, maybe, their national bodies.

(I don't know it ever did did get listed in the end or what the IOC's stand is now.)
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby Chris249 » Sun Oct 14, 2012 9:00 am

Xplora wrote:
high_tea wrote:....even cooking meat.

You cook your steak? :shock: SOFT :roll:

I think your post sums up my opinion, it's all technology, and if they have no way of enforcing these rules about drugs (especially within the statute of limitations) then it is a fool's errand to make these substances illegal.


The fact that you cannot entirely prevent something, whether it is murder, cannibalism, running down cyclists, taking the neighbour's milk money, changing your line in a sprint or taking PEDs, does not mean that you do not try to reduce the extent to which it happens.

If you allow EPO etc because you cannot 100% prevent the possibility that it is being used, then on the same basis you would also have to allow riders to take much more dangerous drugs. So what is a promising and impressionable 19 year old neo-pro to do? Do they give up their dream of racing as a pro, or do they take drugs that could come with a high chance of nasty death?

Drugs controls aren't the only technology controls. In many "equipment sports" people can substitute illegal gear after measurement checks have been done, or stretch the rules on design. Does the fact that you cannot stop it mean you throw away all measurement rules for cycling and therefore make every competitive racer use a streamlined recumbent, with all the havoc that vastly increased expense and logistics that could impose on the sport?
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sun Oct 14, 2012 9:09 am

Racing with someone on MJ is not fun. It is clearly dangerous to do so.

IMO MJ use in competition breaks two of three criteria (it IS against the spirit of the sport and poses a health risk).
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sun Oct 14, 2012 9:12 am

find_bruce wrote:& what makes you think I have not actually read the WADA code Alex ? :roll:

Glad to find you have, but then if you have, then why do you say performance enhancement is the only reason a substance or method should be prohibited, when that's not the case?
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby find_bruce » Sun Oct 14, 2012 9:16 am

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:
find_bruce wrote:& what makes you think I have not actually read the WADA code Alex ? :roll:

Glad to find you have, but then if you have, then why do you say performance enhancement is the only reason a substance or method should be prohibited, when that's not the case?

Go back & read what I said - as far as I can tell it is the reason for every other substance that is banned in competition only.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sun Oct 14, 2012 9:32 am

ColinOldnCranky wrote:The IOC banned marihuana (or signaled intent to do so) late last century. Tat got me to thinking, what about when the Olympics are held in a Muslim country? Shouldn't alcohol be similarly listed?

WADA is not a legislative body determining the laws of countries/states, only those rules related to doping and sport.

Prohibited by WADA and being (il)legal are totally different issues.

In the same way that something being (un)ethical is another consideration, as are the rules of competition.

IOW, there may be a substance or method that's legal (laws of state) and not prohibited by WADA, but may be unethical or against the rules of competition/sport.

Alcohol is usually dealt with by the rules of the sport, or in a sport Code of Conduct policy as it is with Cycling Australia.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sun Oct 14, 2012 9:36 am

find_bruce wrote:
Alex Simmons/RST wrote:
find_bruce wrote:& what makes you think I have not actually read the WADA code Alex ? :roll:

Glad to find you have, but then if you have, then why do you say performance enhancement is the only reason a substance or method should be prohibited, when that's not the case?

Go back & read what I said - as far as I can tell it is the reason for every other substance that is banned in competition only.

Then your understanding is incorrect.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby ColinOldnCranky » Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:08 am

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:
ColinOldnCranky wrote:The IOC banned marihuana (or signaled intent to do so) late last century. Tat got me to thinking, what about when the Olympics are held in a Muslim country? Shouldn't alcohol be similarly listed?

WADA is not a legislative body determining the laws of countries/states, only those rules related to doping and sport.

Prohibited by WADA and being (il)legal are totally different issues.

In the same way that something being (un)ethical is another consideration, as are the rules of competition.

IOW, there may be a substance or method that's legal (laws of state) and not prohibited by WADA, but may be unethical or against the rules of competition/sport.

Alcohol is usually dealt with by the rules of the sport, or in a sport Code of Conduct policy as it is with Cycling Australia.


I am not too sure what point you are making.

WADA is not a legislative body determining the laws of countries/states, only those rules related to doping and sport. Agreed. But not the issue.

Most of the drug limits imposed for international sport did not involve breaking national laws until recently. It is only recently that there has been consistency across different sports in what you can and can't take as the various sporting codes made their own choices, despite all operating under the same national laws. Now however IOC and others fall into lockstep and require signing up to various conditions making them subject to agreements.

National laws were ever the issue for international sport at the elite level. If you wanted to roll up to the olympics (for example) then the IOC could and did impose conditions like accreditation dependent on signing up to various codes. And those bodies have to sign up in turn to WADA in order to satisfy the IOC. The UCI is now falling into line with USADA's as, if they decide not to then UCI is breaking agreements with WADA and, as night follows day, the IOC will turf out cycling. Far more effective than relying on local laws (as i crudely understand it). Everyone everywhere along the chain is subject to terms not of their own.

The International Olympic Committee, with emphasis on INTERNATIONAL, chose to take a stand against one drug that is illegal to use in many countries and consumed in public in others while the legality of those same drugs is exactly reversed in another set of countries. But then, the IOC was never about consistency, morality or fairness anyway. They are more into junkets, selling coca cola, selling Nike sports gear and selling credit card services.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby find_bruce » Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:16 am

find_bruce wrote:Go back & read what I said - as far as I can tell it is the reason for every other substance that is banned in competition only.

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:Then your understanding is incorrect.

Really - which of the drugs listed in that part of the schedule do you think is not performance enhancing ?
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sun Oct 14, 2012 11:41 am

find_bruce wrote:
find_bruce wrote:Go back & read what I said - as far as I can tell it is the reason for every other substance that is banned in competition only.

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:Then your understanding is incorrect.

Really - which of the drugs listed in that part of the schedule do you think is not performance enhancing ?

Diuretics for a start. Selegiline is another. And the injection of more than 50ml of anything, such as saline. Not performance enhancing.

Indeed use of diuretics is not only not performance enhancing, it is well established that it's performance degrading.

From this comprehensive paper on diuretics:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2962812/

Caldwell et al. performed a diuretic-induced cycling workload reduction study to assess the effects of hypohydration on cycle ergometer performance. In this study, VO2 max (maximum oxygen uptake) and workload while cycling decrease in athletes after furosemide intake. Even after rehydration, muscular endurance and performance are greatly compromised by diuretic use (Caldwell et al., 1984). Additional studies performed on middle-distance runners (Armstrong et al., 1985) and wrestlers (Caldwell, 1987) confirmed that diuretics decrease the effects on overall athletic performance. Although insufficient data are available to establish the effect of long-term diuretic treatment on exercise capacity, it has been clearly shown that both single dose and short-term diuretic treatment adversely affect maximal exercise capacity and the duration of prolonged submaximal exercise (Fagard et al., 1993). For the multitude of reasons mentioned above, the drawbacks related to diuretic administration outweigh the potential advantages of lowering of weight and urine dilution; dehydration drastically impairs aerobic capacity and muscular strength and decreases metabolic efficiency. This results in a detrimental effect on overall sport and exercise ability and especially on athletic performance (Caldwell et al., 1984; Armstrong et al., 1985). In addition, a potential effect of diuretics abuse is the possible alteration of the glomerular filtration size, which depends on a series of parameters (Edwards et al., 1999), most of which can markedly be affected by the mechanism of action of the different classes of diuretics. Finally, it should be noted that disqualification from competition as well as the other, previously mentioned detrimental effects of diuretic abuse offset any perceived benefits.

Although many of the studies highlighted above were published in the 1980s and 1990s, diuretics are still widely abused in sport (and among the most prescribed therapeutic agents). Few studies of the effects of diuretics on athletes have been published recently because in recent times, most studies assessing doping agents and exercise and sport have focused on newer drugs and methods of performance enhancement. Diuretic use for the masking of other prohibited substances remains a serious problem, however.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby find_bruce » Sun Oct 14, 2012 1:23 pm

find_bruce wrote:Go back & read what I said - as far as I can tell it is the reason for every other substance that is banned in competition only.

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:Then your understanding is incorrect.

find_bruce wrote:Really - which of the drugs listed in that part of the schedule do you think is not performance enhancing ?

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:Diuretics for a start. Selegiline is another. And the injection of more than 50ml of anything, such as saline. Not performance enhancing.

You really should take your own advice and read the WADA code, because you are batting 0 for 3 at the moment.

Two of the matters you mentioned are in the section "substances and methods prohibited at all times(in and out of competition)", diuretics are class s5, injections of more than 50 mL is in class m2.

Selegiline is a specified stimulant under class s6, which is in the section I identified of prohibited in competition only. I understand it was used by track athletes who thought it improved their reaction times to the starter's gun.

Care to try again ?
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby Alex Simmons/RST » Sun Oct 14, 2012 2:41 pm

find_bruce wrote:You really should take your own advice and read the WADA code, because you are batting 0 for 3 at the moment.

Two of the matters you mentioned are in the section "substances and methods prohibited at all times(in and out of competition)", diuretics are class s5, injections of more than 50 mL is in class m2.

Selegiline is a specified stimulant under class s6, which is in the section I identified of prohibited in competition only. I understand it was used by track athletes who thought it improved their reaction times to the starter's gun.

Care to try again ?


I gave three examples dealing with substances and methods banned in competition. Obviously I missed the subtlety of the in competition only in your comment. Nevertheless, the rationale for inclusion of substances is no different.

There is no evidence that Selegiline is performance enhancing. But that is not the sole criteria in any case.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby master6 » Sun Oct 14, 2012 4:42 pm

Having skipped through this thread, I might have missed someone mentioning TUE's lodged with Cycling Australia. Last time I spoke with CA I was given the distinct impression that the "TUE" lodgement file might have gone missing. If this is true, a lot of people might appreciate an amnesty.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby Mulger bill » Sun Oct 14, 2012 7:36 pm

IIRC, when cannabis was first banned for in comp use in DH (not XC) MTB, it was because it was deemed a performance enhancer. The theory being that it reduced inhibitions/suppressed the fear reflex which would allow users to ride faster than their guardian angels.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby il padrone » Sun Oct 14, 2012 7:48 pm

Alex Simmons/RST wrote:IMO MJ use in competition breaks two of three criteria (it IS against the spirit of the sport and poses a health risk).

Same criteria get the tick for tobacco IMO.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby Xplora » Sun Oct 14, 2012 8:06 pm

Chris249 wrote:
Xplora wrote:
high_tea wrote:....even cooking meat.

You cook your steak? :shock: SOFT :roll:

I think your post sums up my opinion, it's all technology, and if they have no way of enforcing these rules about drugs (especially within the statute of limitations) then it is a fool's errand to make these substances illegal.


The fact that you cannot entirely prevent something, whether it is murder, cannibalism, running down cyclists, taking the neighbour's milk money, changing your line in a sprint or taking PEDs, does not mean that you do not try to reduce the extent to which it happens.

If you have no way of enforcing... that was what I said. Drug tests is a way of enforcing those rules. Video evidence of a dodgy bike design or poor riding is enough to enable rules enforcement. I'm not saying that they shouldn't try and stop dodgy behaviour - but if you can't detect the behaviour, then you shouldn't be disallowing it. If a tree falls in the woods, and no one is there to see it, does it even make a sound?

It would be the same as having rules about bike weight, while having no scales. It doesn't make sense, and creates a strange dichotomy.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby Releng » Sun Oct 14, 2012 8:56 pm

Xplora wrote:It would be the same as having rules about bike weight, while having no scales. It doesn't make sense, and creates a strange dichotomy.


Yes, but:
In the spirit of competition would it be a fair thing to do?

There are rules of fair play, and as Australians I reckon that we could improve in this area.
Maybe it really isn't cricket, or golf, or sailing, or cycling?

Maybe we could make Lance an honorary Aussie and then it would all be ok.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby Xplora » Sun Oct 14, 2012 9:21 pm

I'm not talking about fair - I'm talking about smart. Let's set a bunch of rules that we can enforce if we want to compete. If you can't enforce it, you don't make it against the rules. You could make the consumption of celery illegal as well, but unless you could test for it, what would be the point? Clearly EPO is helpful because they give it to cancer patients. Pro athletes are borderline cybernetic organisms already... the war on drugs was big in the 80s, but EPO and steroids are not the same as as street heroine.

The main reason I don't use a suite of alternative gear to improve my performance (massage, chiro, supplements, proper road shoes LOL) is I just don't have the resources to invest. There is no level playing field, I lack the money to compete with SKY let alone the talent or chemical cocktails of USPS. We must be reasonable about all this stuff... and I don't know if we are setting ourselves up for success as a society/culture if we have issues with professionals pushing the chemical envelope. This ain't the Olympics. Purity of the game is not the focus anymore. :idea:
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby high_tea » Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:00 pm

Xplora wrote:I'm not talking about fair - I'm talking about smart. Let's set a bunch of rules that we can enforce if we want to compete. If you can't enforce it, you don't make it against the rules. You could make the consumption of celery illegal as well, but unless you could test for it, what would be the point? Clearly EPO is helpful because they give it to cancer patients. Pro athletes are borderline cybernetic organisms already... the war on drugs was big in the 80s, but EPO and steroids are not the same as as street heroine.

The main reason I don't use a suite of alternative gear to improve my performance (massage, chiro, supplements, proper road shoes LOL) is I just don't have the resources to invest. There is no level playing field, I lack the money to compete with SKY let alone the talent or chemical cocktails of USPS. We must be reasonable about all this stuff... and I don't know if we are setting ourselves up for success as a society/culture if we have issues with professionals pushing the chemical envelope. This ain't the Olympics. Purity of the game is not the focus anymore. :idea:


I think about what declaring open slather on chemicals for pro athletes would look like and it's not a pretty picture. I'm thinking "Chain Gang" meets "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas". Ugh.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby zero » Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:07 pm

Xplora wrote:I'm not talking about fair - I'm talking about smart. Let's set a bunch of rules that we can enforce if we want to compete. If you can't enforce it, you don't make it against the rules. You could make the consumption of celery illegal as well, but unless you could test for it, what would be the point? Clearly EPO is helpful because they give it to cancer patients. Pro athletes are borderline cybernetic organisms already... the war on drugs was big in the 80s, but EPO and steroids are not the same as as street heroine.


Synthetic EPO is quite dangerous. It is not use as a general treatment for cancer patients, its used in people with kidney failures, who will not be secreting the natural varient themselves, and thus will only be aiming at the bottom end of normal values, rather than the over the top end of genetically gifted.

The early period of EPO usage in cycling was littered with deaths, and now that the reasons why are understood, it would be criminally negligent to drop testing.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby gdt » Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:24 pm

MartinLWilliamson wrote:Good opinion piece on the VeloVeritas site

I thought it was poor, because it missed an essential point of the USADA allegation: that Lance was conspirator-in-chief, subverting people who would have otherwise probably have remained clean and bringing a new level of sophistication. That's the difference between Armstrong and Barry and why once is seen as villian and the other as victim. Of course Kimmage said it years earlier than USADA in his statement that the "cancer has returned" when describing Lance's comeback.
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby The 2nd Womble » Mon Oct 15, 2012 12:27 am

Oh no! Another Who's Got The Biggest Brain thread! :cry:
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Re: This USPS Conspiracy is a Scandal Too Far

Postby Chris249 » Mon Oct 15, 2012 6:49 am

Xplora wrote:
I think your post sums up my opinion, it's all technology, and if they have no way of enforcing these rules about drugs (especially within the statute of limitations) then it is a fool's errand to make these substances illegal.


If you have no way of enforcing... that was what I said. Drug tests is a way of enforcing those rules. Video evidence of a dodgy bike design or poor riding is enough to enable rules enforcement. I'm not saying that they shouldn't try and stop dodgy behaviour - but if you can't detect the behaviour, then you shouldn't be disallowing it. If a tree falls in the woods, and no one is there to see it, does it even make a sound?

It would be the same as having rules about bike weight, while having no scales. It doesn't make sense, and creates a strange dichotomy.[/quote]

For a start the premise is wrong - there ARE ways of catching drug cheats - just not all drug cheats all the time, right away.

But mainly it's not technology that is really needed - it is a culture of not cheating. I take part in a sport in which equipment costs up to 10 million capital cost + millions per season, and is highly publicised. There is one way in which any team could cheat in a very basic and effective yet undetectable way, and yet (even as a former journo and competitor in the sport) I've never heard of anyone in Oz doing so, or even being suspected of doing so. That is despite the fact that pros could earn significant amounts of money if they did cheat in this simple way.

There has been some cheating in the sport, but not this most effective and blatant of breaches. It may be because everyone knows that if it later turned out that you cheated, you would be shunned for life. Those who have been caught cheating in other ways have generally been ostracised from their sport for all time; even when their official bans expired, most of those involved just stayed away.

That sort of culture could be what is needed in cycling. That sort of culture is created by having clear rules, even if those rules are not capable of 100% enforcement, not by ignoring them.

And of course you cannot catch everyone who has ever wrongly deviated from their line in a sprint, nor can you catch everyone who shifts their saddle mid race or changes to a lightweight bike, so just like drug testing those rules are NOT perfectly enforceable. So the same rules apply - you ban it even if you cannot enforce it 100%

Re the tree falling analogy, yes, some people go into protected forests (or the Botanic Gardens) and chop down trees silently. The fact that you cannot stop it entirely does not mean that you do not prohibit illegal logging.

I work in prevention of a crime in your area. We cannot detect or stop crime in your neighbourhood - does that mean that we should stop controlling it?
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