Random Thoughts on Various Subjects

1. LANCE CONFESSES

Watching Lance Armstrong confess to Oprah this week was a bit surreal. This is the guy who I have watched deny the very things he confessed to with as much vigor as any man could. Lance not only lied, but he lied with a vigor that was without restraint or remorse. This is the guy who would sue you if you dared question his lies. I watched the confession and saw a man not really contrite. Instead, I saw a prick sorry that he had been caught.

Greg LeMond got it right when he said that Lance was either the greatest comeback or the greatest fraud in sports history. Now, we see the truth. Lance Armstrong is a fraud and the biggest fraud that has ever existed in the world of sports. He is a disgrace.

Now, I want to make one thing clear. I have always said this in the past, and I will say it now that the truth is fully revealed. Cycling is a dirty sport. It has always been a dirty sport, but it is especially dirty now. And, it will never be clean. In doping, Lance Armstrong merely participated in a practice that literally everyone else was doing in the sport. Is this cheating? Is it cheating if everyone else is doing it, too? The answer is no. Lance could either win dirty or lose clean, but he could never win clean. No one can win clean in the TDF. You can't even compete clean.

In a completely clean race, Lance Armstrong would have still won seven times. I have no doubt about that. To strip this man of his titles is utterly foolish. He deserves them because he won them. It is the responsibility of the organizers of the sport to provide a clean and level playing field for competition. But since this can never happen with doping, those organizers need to throw in the towel and let them dope.

The disgrace for Lance Armstrong was not what he did with his body but what he did with his actions towards others. Lance was evil. He hurt a lot of people. A lot of people looked up to that guy as a hero, and he milked their admiration knowing the entire time that he was a fraud. And he went after anyone who threatened to uncover his lies with such vehemence that it now staggers the imagination. Lance Armstrong is a grade A prick.

I don't think Lance is beyond redemption. Unfortunately, by going on Oprah instead of something harder like 60 Minutes, Lance has shown that he merely wants cheap forgiveness. Cheap forgiveness is a topic that I will discuss about it in a future post, but I can say that Lance has a great deal of penance to perform. He needs to go the people he has explicitly wronged and apologize both privately and publicly. He must return money, confess to criminal activities, and do some jail. Then, he needs to write a book about his disgrace and donate all the profits to a real cancer charity and not that crappy Livestrong foundation he started. In short, Lance should pursue his redemption with as much zeal and vigor as he did in winning the Tour de France. The ironic thing is that I would admire him if he did this. But I doubt it will happen.

2. GUNS

There is a lot of debate and stupidity over guns going on these days as most politicians do exactly what is wrong. It boggles the mind. As William Burroughs put it, "After a shooting spree, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn't do it."

The answer to this issue is obvious. The public needs a non-lethal means of self-defense. This would and should satisfy everyone's concerns. This non-lethal device would have stopped Adam Lanza while letting everyone feel relieved that they are in the same room with this device. The ubiquity of this device would make guns a moot point.

Police already have non-lethal devices such as tasers and pepper spray. The general public needs this as well. Granted, idiots may abuse it, but it is rare to have a funeral for someone who got tazed. But a crazy gunman would and could be neutralized. It would not be perfect since gun deaths will always be a fact of life. But it would certainly tip the scales back in favor of the victims.

Some budding entrepreneur needs to create this device. This is the answer. It would allow people to defend themselves without also making people feel threatened at the same time. It would work. The only flaw is that such a device would probably be outlawed by people concerned with abuse or the gun lobby wanting protectionist policies for their industry.

3. MARK SANFORD

Disgrace former SC governor Mark Sanford is running for Congress. Is this a dumb idea? Looking at all the other cheaters out there, it isn't. Bill Clinton went to bat for Obama at the DNC, and that guy received oral sex in the White House. The reality is that being an adulterer is becoming an acceptable sin in American life. This is sad and sick, but there it is.

If you were to fire all adulterers from every position in American life, boardrooms, government agencies, and the halls of Congress would be ghost towns. That is simple reality. The vast majority of people cheat. This is why a guy like Mark Sanford can make a comeback. If Mark Sanford got the vote of every cheater, he would win in a landslide. The bottom line? Adultery is the sin most people are guilty of committing. At some point, people will simply stop feeling guilty about it, and that will be a sad day.

4. ODDS AND ENDS

--I am not shocked that Ray Nagin took bribes. New Orleans, folks. Only Chicago is more crooked.

--Nobody wants Windows 8.

--Late night television is a complete wasteland now.

--The secret to aging well is a relentless commitment to physical fitness and continual learning.