US History

From Johnny Appleseed to Hurricane Katrina, flip through the colorful, and many times controversial, pages of U.S. history as you explore this section.

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1266 days ago

So deplorable, that he gets honored by FRANCE. Figures!

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1548 days ago


Great American,Innovator,Liberator,et al.....in his own mind.

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1752 days ago

No such thing as just "white". Everyone comes from a mixture of ethnicities and cultures. People with what is called a "white" complexion are often of mixed european descent but check the DNA & you'll probably find a lot more than that.

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1848 days ago

they'll put a skate in yer ass quicker than you can say Fond de Lac

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2365 days ago

Are there any athletes who don't Dope? I'm curious.

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2365 days ago

Despising bicycles hogging the roads and streets as much as I do, I would mark him low even without the dope. With the drug disclosures, he drops into the basement of the ratings schedule.

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2365 days ago

My dad was in the Third Army what was commanded by Patton from the time of the breakout at St. Lo to the end of the war in Czechoslovakia. The media were against Patton, but the troops loved him. I stand with my dad and his comrades.

I heard my dad and his buddies, when they got together, speak very highly of "the old man," GSP, Jr.

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2365 days ago

This guy had a great story: all the yellow jerseys, a cancer survivor, his Foundation, great wealth and fame. He was never a hero of mine, but he did have that Great Story. Doping had been a far gone conclusion; 20 of the last 21 Tour winners were tied to PED's. If Armstrong had a case at all, it would be that he was only trying to level the playing field. But, I know 3-year old kids who have a more well-developed conscience and sense of right and wrong, as did riders who would never see their day at the Podium because they wouldn't cheat. Since those drugs have proven efficacy, he will never be able to tell his grandchildren that he was the greatest at what he did.

In fact, I'd be surprised if his grandchildren didn't change their last names in order to hide from his legacy. He will go down in history as one of the Ugliest of Americans. Where do we start?

-He ran a clandestine drug ring and bullied his teammates to 'man-up' or be ostracized.
-He had failed drugs tests twice, but they were both covered up, once by getting a Doctor to doctor prescriptions and the other by paying off Union Cycliste Internationale with a $125,000 "donation".
-He lied about the number of times he was tested.
-And regarding his Foundation, Livestrong:

~Bill Gifford wrote in Outside Magazine that, "Livestrong spends massively on adver­tising, PR, and 'branding,' all of which helps preserve Armstrong's marketability at a time when he's under fire. Meanwhile, Armstrong has used the goodwill of his foundation to cut business deals that have enriched him per­sonally, an ethically questionable move." And...

~"“It’s a win-win,” says Daniel Borochoff, head of the American Institute of Philanthropy, a watchdog group. “He builds up the foundation, and they build up him."

'Equally interesting is what the foundation doesn’t do. Most people—including nearly everybody I surveyed while reporting this story—assume that Livestrong funnels large amounts of money into cancer research. Nope. The foundation gave out a total of $20 million in research grants between 1998 and 2005, the year it began phasing out its support of hard science. A note on the foundation’s website informs visitors that, as of 2010, it no longer even accepts research proposals."

The guy is flat-out ruthless. He'd have to lie about the number of times he has lied. In cheating, he skewed the field so badly that cycling can now only be perceived as staged events. Which brings us to the riddle of the day:

What does Lance Armstrong and the crooks on Wall Street have in common? Answer: None of them will ever see the inside of a prison cell.

As spectators, I guess we'll just have to be happy knowing that the truth is stubborn.

What a douche bag.

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2369 days ago

I never paid any attention to the Tour de France before Lance Armstrong came along. I didn't even pay that much attention while he was on his streak. I generally knew the Tour was on during the latter years of his run, because there were mentions of it on the morning sports. But I couldn't tell you a thing about cycling, how the race is run, how it's scored, how good any of the other participants are, what country produces the best racers. Nothing. I just know the Tour de France is a long race, like the Iditarod but on bikes.

So Armstrong became a legend with an incredible back story, a sudden massive celebrity, enormous marketing muscle, great wealth and seemingly a bright future. But almost immediately the spectre of cheating cast a cloud over his accomplishments. Some people believed in him and his accomplishments unflinchingly, right up until last night when he confessed to Oprah. Others started calling him a cheat and a liar right away.

During it all sponsors, donors and consumers continued to keep the cashflow that had sprung up around brand Armstrong pumping at a brisk pace. Were those people cheated? Or did they get their money's worth for the investments they made? Nike certainly moved product, their deal with him was transactional. So long as there was equity in his brand they benefitted from the association by selling shoes to his fans. The account is even, I'd say. Ditto the charities.

The fans? They didn't invest anything more than emotion if you ask me. They enjoyed the ride thinking they knew who was king in a world that they previously knew nothing about. That they were disappointed by the king could be written down as a life lesson. Sometimes your heroes are not so great after all. Kings are dethroned. Sometimes they are torn to shreds by angry mobs, but nothing usually changes much the next day. There's nothing to see here, move along.

What about the sport of cycling? Lance said in the Oprah interview that doping was about as much a part of the race as putting air in the tires. By most accounts that’s accurate. Do I care that top elite level cyclists take drugs? Not really.

Am I glad they are generally trying to make athletes stop using such means as a way of gaining advantage in competition across the sports spectrum? Yes. Sports, first and foremost are a great way for people to engage socially. If kids think they have to take things that will harm their health in order to do so, then that's a really bad thing. So a high profile bust like Lance Armstrong is ultimately a good thing. You would hope.

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2371 days ago

One more Asterisk for the sports almanac, I guess...

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