Blog Entry

Cheating In Sports Is Nothing New

Posted on: May 8, 2008 11:11 am
Edited on: June 13, 2008 9:40 am
 

Breaking News!  There is cheating going on in sports!

I know, I know.  Tell us something that we don't already know, right.  I can no longer hold back my sarcasm.  Anyone who reads or listens to the media coverage on "Spygate", Roger Clemens, or Barry Bonds would be lead to believe that cheating in sports is a brand new phenomenon.  Come on now folks, lets come back to a bit of reality here.  Cheating is not new.  It has been going on virtually forever.

Sportsman have been cheating dating back to the dawn of the Greek and Roman civiliztions.  I'm quite certain (more sarcasm) that the very first olympianswere always completely honest and forthright citizens who never attempted to gain an advantage by doing things outside of the rules.  Roman Gladiators always said, "No, I'm affraid I can't do that.  It just would not be right."  Sure they did.  Jousting competitions of the middle ages were always above reproach.  Does everyone get where I'm going with this?  Modern times are no different.  Corked bats, scuffed baseballs, point shaving, performance enhancing drugs, video taping, etc. are all just new methods of doing the same things that have been done for centuries.

I know, what you are thinking.  We live in a more enlightened and sophisticated time where we should live by a code oh honor were honesty and sportsmanship should be valued above all else.  Idealism.  Pure idealism.  The truth of the matter is, It is all about winning.  The montra that "It's not if you win or lose.  It's how you play the game."  Is quite frankly a complete load of crap.  This is simply a concept which we attempt to teach our children in an attempt to help them along toward fitting in to a false vision of what a polite society expects of them.  In reality, "winning isn't everything, it's the only thing" is the way things really work.  It all comes down to money and If you are not cheating, you are not trying.

It is sad to say but, the truth is, just about everyone wins when cheating is allowed to continue.  The athlete wins because, through cheating he or she gains an advantage over peers which result in bigger contracts and more endorsements.  Ownership wins through additional success, on the field resulting in an increased fan base, merchandise sales, and the justification for higher ticket prices.  The leagues and netwoks win through improved exposure and increased revenue from advertising.  Local businesses and municipalities win with an influx of revenue as well.  Even government officials, with aspiration of bigger and better opportunities, win due to increased national exposure.

Cheating goes far beyond the world of sports.  Corporate America cheats every day.  It is called industrial espionage.  Get the product to market before your competition.  Cheating is the way of the world and it always has been.

It is time for the media to get off of their soap boxes and stop pretending to be offended by the state of cheating.  The mass media outlets are the biggest cheaters on the planet.  They do whatever it takes to get the story first.

Now that I have ranted and raved on this subject, let the conversations begin.

Comments

Since: Feb 12, 2008
Posted on: June 13, 2008 9:34 am
 

Cheating In Sports Is Nothing New

Okay, I can completely understand the involvement of federal investigators, with the Tim Donaghy NBA thing as Federal Laws have been broken and they are in the middle of trial sentencing here.  Where I have an issue is congress getting involved.  Hello Senators!!  Ummmm, our economy is circling the drain here.  Lets focus your efforts on important things like fixing that first.  What do ya say?

Here is the latest on the Donaghy situation

The Baseball situation is just plain getting rediculous now!  Check this out.




Since: Aug 16, 2006
Posted on: May 30, 2008 9:44 am
 

Cheating In Sports Is Nothing New

Its all about the money. I am talking about ESPN. ESPN is milking these scandals for all the money they can sqeeze out of them. There isn't any money in reporting the warm and fuzzy, but dredge up the muck and people will watch intently. With 24 hour sports channels airing dirt, attention wh0res like Specter see a way to get facetime and don't care how much government money they waste, as long as they are on a TV station other than C-SPAN.




Since: Feb 12, 2008
Posted on: May 20, 2008 12:10 pm
 

Cheating In Sports Is Nothing New

Okay, Here we go.  Lets recap what is going on in the world of sports cheating.  We have the steroid scandal in Major League Baseball, congress is involved.  We have "Spygate" and a steroid witch hunt in the NFL, congress is involved in one and probably will become involved in the other.  Now we have the point shaving scandal in the NBA.  Is this the next to be investigated by congress.  I'm betting the answer is yes because it is oh so important.  I completely understand that where laws are broken, the government has every right to get involved.  But, as I have said before, with gasoline quickly approaching $4.00 per gallon, unemployment nearing an all time high, crime rates getting completely out of control, etc. should congress not be focusing on these more important issues?  Cheating should not be a high priority right now.

I completely realize that I have not really made any new points here, I am beating a dead horse again, and this was really not the original purpose of this blog.  Our domestic economy and foreign policy have deteriorated to the point where I fee like I have time traveled back to the late 70's and early 80's yet congress continues to waste millions of dollars in tax payer funds on these rediculous grandstanding investigations.  The similarities are amazing.  Do a Google search on the late 1970's and check it out.

Sorry folks.  I had to rant and rave a bit today.

 




Since: Mar 20, 2008
Posted on: May 15, 2008 10:37 am
 

Cheating In Sports Is Nothing New

GOOD STUFF tundraz!!!  I tried to post a pretty long reply here yesterday trying to take both sides of the debate. Unfortunately, it disappeared into the CBS ether and left me that lovely ERROR CODE 100 message. Now you've stolen my fire tundraz by saying a lot of the same things I tried to. I also started to rant about cheating being such a cultural thing that I've  seen it every every year in catholic (don't hold that against  me) grade school sports starting in FIRST GRADE!!! You know at that age its not the kids that are cheating, but they sure get the message quick. In big time sports today, any question you ask can be answered with "Follow the Money." I really like your comments about Specter. For any that don't already know:

After graduating from the and , Specter became a prominent lawyer in and active in politics, beginning his political life as a . At the recommendation of Rep. , he worked for the , investigating the assassination of . As an assistant counsel for the commission, he authored or co-authored<sup class="reference" id="cite_ref-1"></sup> the controversial "," which suggested the non-fatal wounds to President Kennedy and were caused by the same bullet. This was a crucial assertion for the Warren Commission, since if the two had been wounded by separate bullets, that would have demonstrated the presence of a second assassin and therefore a conspiracy.

This guy wants to start ANOTHER committee when he was on what is probably the worst committee in history. I guess we need a single tape theory to explain everything. This cheating is such a complex issue that there can be no single correct solution. Kudos to everyone here as I think you are all correct. Oh, I've got to go before the new Vista laptop makes me mad enough to throw it thru my big screen!!!!!!! Cheers.



Since: Feb 12, 2008
Posted on: May 15, 2008 10:10 am
 

Cheating In Sports Is Nothing New

What is Arlon Specter trying to prove?

C'mon Senator!  It's time to let it go.  Let's stop wasting taxpayer money.  What is to be gained through a "Mitchell" style report?  I'll give you the answer Arlon.  Nothing!  Get off of your soap box.  Whether or not the Patriots taped the Chargers walk through at the Superbowl is not that important, is it?  You are making yourself look like an idiot Senator.  If you are looking for a conspiracy, start looking for the second shooter on the "grassy knoll" or look for Jimmy Hoffa's body.  Perhaps you can dig up your good friend "Shoeless" Joe Jackson and interview him about the 1919 Black Sox scandle.  If you are worried about cheating and corruption stop pointing the finger at the NFL and start an investigation into some of your peers and other government officials.  Don't you think that is a bit more important?  Not High profile enough for you Arlon?  I have another target for you.  How about corporate corruption and price gouging?  Oh sorry, I forgot.  You would not want to go after them.  They are the ones who fund your political campaigns.  Now I just feel silly for suggesting it.

Okay, I'm done ranting and raving for the day.




Since: Feb 12, 2008
Posted on: May 14, 2008 10:12 am
 

Cheating In Sports Is Nothing New

Blue,

You will enjoy the book.  It is very well thought out as well as very well written.

I agree with many of your points.  You are correct.  Those who play by the rules should not be penalized due to the actions of those who cheat.  Unfortunately, that is exactly what happens when we look to "make things right".  We can't change history.  A win is a win regardless of how it may have been obtained or the circumstances surrounding the win.  Should a university be penalized for the actions of 1 player?  Player X takes money from an agent without the school's knowledge.  The offense is uncovered after the player has already turned pro.  The NCAA cannot penalize the player in question, for obvious reasons.  The only ones who get hurt by a punishment to the school is the innocent Player Y who loses his scholarship through no fault of their own.  It is a very slippery slope.

I realize that I am about to go a bit off topic here now that we have started a coversation about society in general but, I'll do it any way.  I completely agree with the Bill Clinton thing.  He never should have become President in the first place.  That being said, society is constantly shifting its social norms and changing its views of what is or is not morally acceptable.  Whether it be sports or any other facet of society, what is good today, may be taboo tomorrow.  It is no secret that those who hold the power, or in many cases the money, decide what will be accepted as right or wrong in a society.  You need look no further than the rise and fall of the Roman Empire for examples.  Look at our own American Revolution or Civil War.  In fact pick any point in history and you will quickly be able to identify fundamental shifts in the moral fabric of the world or more specifically individual nations.  Now back to the topic at hand.

Turning a blind eye to cheating clearly, is not the right and just thing to do.  Unfortunately, we live in a time where, because of the percieved financial implications of dealing with it with an iron fist are so far reaching, there is little true incentive to put an end to it.  It all comes down to money and greed.  As long as there is big money at stake, human nature will take over and cheating will continue.




Since: Dec 13, 2006
Posted on: May 14, 2008 9:29 am
 

Cheating In Sports Is Nothing New

I will have to look for Michener's book.  I believe that there are a lot of issues under the surface here.  I think records of cheaters should be purged.  There is precedent for that also.  When schools use ineligible players their Ws are turned into Ls.  I think the pros should do that as well.  If the Patriots cheated to win super bowls they should give back the trophies.  The argument that everybody does is just not true.  Everybody does not cheat and those that don't shouldn't be penalized for playing by the rules.

I don't want to get political here, but my biggest disappointment with Bill Clinton was when he ran for Pres the first time in the primaries he was accused of having an affair with gennifer flowers.  His defense was that it shouldn't matter what a person does in private just what he does in the job.  America bought that argument.  America accepting moral deficiency in politics or sports or the business world turns all of our Ws into Ls.



Since: Feb 12, 2008
Posted on: May 13, 2008 2:52 pm
 

Cheating In Sports Is Nothing New

Thanks for stopping by Blue,

My point was not so much that nothing shold be done about cheating in sports.  It was nore along the lines of, nobody really has any incentive to do anything about it.  My other point is that the media, and some members of our government, seem to think that cheating is something new.  Writers get up on their soap boxes and preach about how bad cheating is to the "integrity of the sport".  My argument is that (insert your favorite sport here) never had any integity to begin with.  You can go back to the dawn of all professional sports and see that morality has never been an integral part of the sport.Many of these sports started based upon wagers between business owners.  It has always been about money, in one form or another.  Records should be looked at in the context of the era in which the player achieved those records.  Regardless of how the record was achived, it is what it is.  The event still took place.  The record should not be erased.

For many years this country has placed its athletes on proverbial pedistals and looked to them as role models and heros.  In the past we, as the general public were simply unaware of these peoples' cheating.  In our current age of the internet, where information becomes almost immediately available, we are more aware of what is really going on.

For anyone who is interested, James A. Michener wrote an excellent book on the state of American sports.  He wrote Sports In America back in 1987 and much of what he wrote still holds true today.  This book was actually the topic for a class I took in college, if you can believe that.  The book was still new at that point.  lol




Since: Dec 13, 2006
Posted on: May 13, 2008 2:04 pm
 

Cheating In Sports Is Nothing New

Saying that cheating has happened in the past is like saying the sun rose today.  What the point?  If you are saying that since it has happened in the past why do anything about it, then you have a theme i would argue with.  If we just shrug our shoulders at cheating then where does it go from here?  Why keep records of home runs if it just a record of who cheated the most.  It is just a waste of paper to print.  When I find out my 'Hero' is a cheater then he is no longer my 'hero'.  When people cheat in sports their names should be taken out of the record books and the Ws should turn into Ls.



Since: Jan 22, 2008
Posted on: May 10, 2008 5:17 pm
 

Cheating In Sports Is Nothing New

I enjoyed your blog, here is something else that I would lie to interject with,

When the athlete and or organization pays certain heirachy the benefit of looking th eother way then you have economic espinoge and or racketeering that pass from one generation to the next.

For example the Oil company that is being fined 1 million per day and getting a profit of 3 million per day, where is the teeth to defer the actions taken.

Baseball is the latest sport to be media blasted for thier actions, really the technology of the science is to blame. You have professional chemist that pass off their research to those that want to get ahead, then the sporting profession is forced to find way to detect it. Intern costing millions to develop and implement the detection device, oh by the way there is still a union that has to get there say in and in some cases is blocking the ability to clean up the sport for which has been tainted.

When speaking of the NFL the Players Union was one of the firsts to enact the penalities of cheating and has made many advances to clean the sport up. It does not mean that it still does not happen but the technology to prevetn such actions has been far more advanced than what it being taken in the Baseball.

It is that same stance of the MLB that has been contrversal in attempting to clean up the sport.

Hockey, Basketball and every other type sport has there problems but with action there is no detourance.

 



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