Skip to comments.Congress Should Worry About Its Own Business Not Baseball's
Posted on 02/15/2008 11:03:57 AM PST by Kaslin
The headline in my morning paper was the height of mediocrity: “A Standoff Over Steroids.”
Edward R. Murrow would be proud.
Watching Congressman Henry Waxman interrogate baseball’s Roger Clemens this week was maddening. In the middle of a war, while the right to intercept electronic messages by our terrorist enemies is being thwarted by anti-war Democrats, as the economy lumbers down some shaky railroad tracks, and illegal immigrants continue to stream across the border siphoning social services from our local communities, a bunch of grandstanding Congressmen have decided to grind Washington, D.C. to a halt and decide if some pampered, spoiled millionaire baseball player is telling the truth when he denies having Human Growth Hormone injected into his butt.
In the grand scheme of life, I wonder how many taxpayers are on the edge of their seats wondering if some trainer named Brian McNamee is being truthful when he testified that Clemens is lying about his use of steroids and HGH.
It ranks right up there with concern about what Brittney Spears is going to do next in her train wreck of a life.
I’d like to believe that most of us have full enough lives that the personal habits of baseball players or pop divas don’t even register as a blip on our collective radar.
It’s one thing to see paparazzi (what a stupid word) stalk Hollywood celebrities like a bunch of crazed vultures and realize what a ridiculous environment could lead to such a debacle in la-la land.
It’s quite another to recognize that our tax dollars have funded this baseball/steroid three ring circus, a giant waste of government resources if there ever was one.
It’s important to make comparisons between the Brittney Spears and the Roger Clemens of the world because they are both in the exact same type of business: entertainment. Nothing more, nothing less.
Too many folks take the baseball steroid controversy seriously because they love their baseball. To them, it’s all about the records, the World Series, celebrating the great American pastime and all.
But baseball players play the game for one reason: our entertainment. They are our movie stars, our pop singers, our recording artists. We expect them to hit the ball, throw the ball, run the bases, and win games.
What grown men inject into their bodies in order to achieve our expectations of them should not only be of no significance to us, it sure as heck is no business of the U.S. Congress.
You want to have Congress hold hearings on baseball players using “performance enhancing drugs?” Okay, let’s keep going down this path. I’m waiting for Congress to drag The Rolling Stones’ Keith Richards before some pompous committee so he can testify as to whether or not he ever used performance enhancing drugs prior to one of the 50 thousand concerts he’s performed over the last 60 years or so.
Incidentally, the smart money says he has.
I’d like to see Amy “Rehab” Winehouse, the current toast of the recording industry, explain to Congressman Waxman how many drugs it has taken her to jump up on a stage and sing her songs.
The entertainment industry is full of alcoholics and drug addicts who often flaunt their habits in front of a jaded public.
If you want to fret about baseball players as role models encouraging kids to take steroids, worry more about the recording artists our children are emulating who would dismiss HGH as child’s play.
Cocaine, Ecstasy, heroin, angel dust – these are drugs a heck of a lot worse than steroids, with young people drawn to these killer drugs in far greater numbers than steroids.
Congressmen don’t really care about protecting young people from turning to steroids. We could hold congressional hearings on an hourly basis to try and detect how many people are cheating on their taxes, or which TV star is doing drugs, or whether or not our next door neighbor kicks his dog.
No, politicians love to pander. They enjoy showboating in front of the TV cameras; they like to pretend to be concerned about an issue like steroids in baseball that isn’t really any of their business.
If Major League Baseball feels it has a problem with players taking steroids, let Major League Baseball handle it.
At least there wouldn’t be any taxpayer money involved.
Gallagher should have read a little history before he wrote this half-baked column.
Lots of people got to witness what a PATHETIC JOKE that Waxman and Congress really is!!! LOTS of PEOPLE CRINGED!
Congress shall oversee Major League Baseball and hold regular hearings to ascertain the extent of drug usage therein.
While I don’t agree with the writer that the feds have no role in the baseball/steroids issue, I do agree with his basic premise. That is that congress is BS’ing around with this, and with NFL’s “spygate.” Frankly I think all the who is lying to who cr@p is about as mature as a junior high school game of “does she like me or does she like me like me.” They are not doing anything really substantive. Of course, I’m not sure I want them trying to do something substantive, because they always screw it up.
Selig and Fehr are incompetent to do their jobs and keep Performance Enhancing drugs out of the sport. Theyve had plenty of time and warning and disaster to get it done. This has been going on for years. As a fan, I dont care about the past , but I want the crap swept out. I want them to test for everything, including blood testing. Clean it up or cite them for anti-trust violations and open baseball up to real competition. Or let the govt enforce the need self regulations.. Im just sick of these feckless idiots.
So do you approve or disapprove of congress' role as a protection racket operator? "We'll pass ridiculous laws, and stretch their interpretation to extremes, so as to interfere with your right to do business. We'll pretend that different baseball clubs are competing companies instead of the branch offices of the same company they so obviously are. But just because we're so nice, we'll exempt you from those laws in exchange for the ability to control your operation."
The MLB invited the Feds in. Blame their stupidity.
Any sports commissioner that is called before Congress should refuse. When pressured by Congress, the commissioner should threaten to dissolve the league to avoid any potential problems. I doubt any politician would want to be linked to destroying the NFL, NBA, NHL or MLB.
Just like the restaurant owner “invited in” the mob owned linen company.
The problem is the fed was all too happy to accommodate. The gov't will happily creep into every single aspect of every american life if they can. The fact that some dumb asses are willing to have that is not the real problem. The fact that they do it and we are paying these clowns as well is the problem.
The Constitution does not guarantee the mob jurisdiction over interstate commerce. But it does the Congress.
I think congress should investigate itself.. and see how many of the “over the hill” gang, use the performance enhancing drug....Viagra, starting with ole Ted Kennedy..
They can’t refuse. Both the NFL and MLB took anti-trust exemptions in exchange for government oversight.
I think Waxman will go and ask for Federal leadership over baseball...dumping Bud completely. It won’t surprise me if Bush is forced into a corner and has to name a guy to run baseball by Federal rules for a 3-year period. My candidate? I’d like to see that Hurricane Katrina 4-star Army general (who recently retired) to be named as the guy. I’d like to see someone yank both the owners and the players a bit....and tell the union to get its act together.
That is the battle the I am saying the leagues should pick. Dare Congress to pull the exemptions and shut down the leagues. NO politician wanting to be reelected is going to have his/her name associated with breaking up the NFL or MLB. Congress won't do it-the only power that Congress has is the power that the leagues give them.
But Landis insisted on being a one-man band.