August 22, 2010

Expert: Clemens is Going Directly to Jail: New York City attorney Robert Becker lays out the case for why Roger Clemens is going to prison: "To conclude otherwise would be to conclude that there is a reasonable possibility that [Brian] McNamee and [Andy] Pettitte (and his wife) lied under oath, despite the fact that the Pettittes had no reason to do so, and that McNamee told the truth about Pettitte and [Chuck] Knoblauch but lied under oath about Clemens, and that Pettitte and McNamee lied about their two conversations with each other, and that B12 shots rather than steroid shots caused a large abscess in Clemens' derriere despite medical evidence to the contrary, and that Clemens' DNA and performance-enhancing drugs both ended up on McNamee's injection paraphernalia but McNamee didn't inject Clemens with performance-enhancing drugs." David Segui, who believes his grand jury testimony may have implicated Clemens, defends his former trainer for keeping evidence. "You never knew when you'll need proof," he said. "I went though a divorce. There's a whole lot of stuff I wish I kept documented."

posted by rcade to baseball at 09:26 AM - 55 comments

Nothing particularly noteworthy in the Fox Sports article - but the USA Today / David Segui article brings to light one key piece of evidence that I don't believe anyone has heard previously: corroboration of the fact that the syringe McNamee kept w Clemens' blood and traces of steroids was not in fact manufactured recently but was indeed something McNamee had in his possession for a very long time.

posted by MW12 at 10:21 AM on August 22

So very tired of the PED story.
So many players used them, and we'll never see the full list.
So many lied about their use, yet only a select few are being held accountable.
Some are vilified without concrete proof, while some are heralded just because they made a halfhearted apology after they were caught.

Clemens is a fool for demanding to testify and then lying. However, are the liars in Congress really the right ones to hold him accountable? Waxman loves the spotlight more than Lindsay Lohan does, and to see him pushing for the indictment just makes me want it all to go away.

Baseball either needs to seriously clean up this mess, or just issue a statement saying that amnesty is being granted for all use prior to now, and that they'll inforce the policy 100% going forward. Clemens needs to pay some price for lying, though I see no benefit to the man sitting in a Federal Prison. Congress needs to stop wasting time getting in the spotlight while dealing with trivial matters like this, and start working on the long list of more serious issues facing this country.

posted by dviking at 11:19 AM on August 22

So very tired of the PED story.

Yeah, there's a lot of bad stuff in the world that I wish would just go away. Want to bet how many cups of coffee that will buy me?

Baseball either needs to seriously clean up this mess

Using "make it go away" as a standard, that is impossible.

Clemens needs to pay some price for lying, though I see no benefit to the man sitting in a Federal Prison.

You don't see any benefit to giving someone the punishment that is a matter of record for lying under oath? You don't see any benefit to possibly deterring others from doing the same? What's being lied about may be a "trivial matter"; disregard for the requirement to be truthful under oath is not.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 11:23 AM on August 22

Just a reminder, everyone was positive that Bonds was going to jail way back in the day. So much so, no team wanted to sign him because there was the chance his season could be disrupted by the trial.

Or, so they say.

posted by grum@work at 11:36 AM on August 22

I "like" how it's the players who are castigated for doing what was condoned (or, at least, ignored) by owners/organizations and even the establishment of baseball, itself. As the PED issue(s) took center stage, the entities that profited from these transgressions feigned innocence and their do-nothing figurehead (Selig)...did nothing.

Nice...

posted by slackerman at 11:51 AM on August 22

Clemens is a fool for demanding to testify and then lying. However, are the liars in Congress really the right ones to hold him accountable?

This is a weak defense. We elected those people to Congress. If they are liars, whose fault is it that they're in office? Clemens had vigorous legal representation. He was advised of the penalties for lying to Congress under oath. If he lied, he deserves to face the punishment.

posted by rcade at 12:29 PM on August 22

Congress needs to stop wasting time getting in the spotlight while dealing with trivial matters like this, and start working on the long list of more serious issues facing this country.


Like LBB said, lying to Congress is an extremely serious issue.

Clemens took a calculated risk - he thought if he could get away with lying to Congress then he'd be able to convince the Baseball Writers to elect him to the Hall in spite of what appears in the Mitchell Report - and he blew it. Doing a year in Federal Prison seems like the least he should get for gambling the taxpayers money for personal gain and losing.

And I love the recent increase in references to Clemens' relationship w Mike Piazza. I still think the bat throwing incident is the defining moment in Clemens' life and career.

posted by MW12 at 01:41 PM on August 22

I think the assumption in the article that the government must have gathered more evidence is a stretch. It's possible, but it's also possible that they haven't.

I think the evidence that Clemens lied about HGH because of Pettite's testimony is strong. I am not really convinced about the rest. I'd like to hear more info about the syringes though.

posted by bperk at 01:47 PM on August 22

Wow, really worked a few of you up.

In regard to:You don't see any benefit to giving someone the punishment that is a matter of record for lying under oath umm, check my post, I clearly stated that Clemens needs to pay a price for lying, just see no benefit to him sitting in prison...did Martha Stewart sitting in prison really send much of a message?

In regard to: This is a weak defense. We elected those people to Congress. If they are liars, whose fault is it that they're in office? Defense of what??? I'm not defending anyone, or anything. Just hoping for a more worthy set of characters to judge someone on lying. It's my opinion, if you hold Congress more favorably than I do, you're welcome to that opinion, not that the over-whelming majority of Americans join you in that.

Lying under oath to Congress is a serious offense, and as I have maintained in this, and prior threads, Clemens was a fool for doing so and deserves to pay a price.

That a few of you took my prior wishes to somehow mean that I want Clemens to get off scott-free is a bit odd given what I posted.

posted by dviking at 02:33 PM on August 22

Wow, really worked a few of you up.

That's a pretty exaggerated definition of "really worked up".

In regard to:You don't see any benefit to giving someone the punishment that is a matter of record for lying under oath umm, check my post, I clearly stated that Clemens needs to pay a price for lying, just see no benefit to him sitting in prison...did Martha Stewart sitting in prison really send much of a message?

Well, if you don't want him sitting in prison, but you do want him to "pay a price", the only other "price" that he could pay is a fine (not sure if that's an option for federal perjury in lieu of jail time, but let's assume it is). So what's the benefit of fining a rich man? How is that more beneficial than sending him to prison? Do you think that we should just not have prison sentences for perjury, or do you think that we should, but that Roger Clemens is somehow an exception?

posted by lil_brown_bat at 04:31 PM on August 22

Actually, my point is that I find it odd that we pick and choose who were going to hold accountable for lying to the public. Elected officials get away with it, numerous other sports figures have lied about their PED usage, and the only thing Clemens did more than what A-Rod did is that he lied in front of a group of politicians. There were many discussions, on this site and others, that Congress really had no reason to be wasting their time on a MLB issue, any more than they should be involved in the BCS debate. That's why the Clemens issue is different for me than say a guy lying about issues that actually affect the country.

As to a fitting punishment for Clemens (and all those involved with lying about PED's) is to have their cherished records taken away like the Olympics do, financial fines, and serious community service time. Yes, he can pay a fine better than perhaps you or I can, but what if the fine is tied to income earned under false pretenses. In the financial world, fines are tied to how much a person gained via illegal activity. Perhaps the fine for Clemens is based on how much he earned while using PED's. A huge multi-million dollar fine sends a message. As it is, the only message players are getting is...don't be stupid enough to ask for a hearing with Congress, and if you do get caught offer up a mediocre apology.

posted by dviking at 05:46 PM on August 22

Actually, my point is that I find it odd that we pick and choose who were going to hold accountable for lying to the public. Elected officials get away with it, numerous other sports figures have lied about their PED usage, and the only thing Clemens did more than what A-Rod did is that he lied in front of a group of politicians.

I'm not sure that's an accurate statement, dviking, but if you can provide examples of elected officials and other sports figures who perjured themselves -- that is, lied under oath -- and were not caught and not punished, then I suppose it's worth considering whether Clemens also should not be punished.

As to a fitting punishment for Clemens (and all those involved with lying about PED's) is to have their cherished records taken away like the Olympics do, financial fines, and serious community service time. Yes, he can pay a fine better than perhaps you or I can, but what if the fine is tied to income earned under false pretenses.

I don't know that a judge has leeway to do this, exactly. At the very least, fines are restricted to a certain range -- a judge can't just make up a fine to be whatever he/she thinks is appropriate.

A huge multi-million dollar fine sends a message. As it is, the only message players are getting is...don't be stupid enough to ask for a hearing with Congress, and if you do get caught offer up a mediocre apology.

A huge multi-million dollar fine (assuming such a thing is possible, which I kind of doubt -- this isn't a civil suit) sends a message; so does jail time. Do you really think that "the only message" players will get if Clemens is convicted and sentenced to prison time is "don't get caught", and that this would somehow be any different if he were convicted and fined instead?

posted by lil_brown_bat at 05:53 PM on August 22

... the only thing Clemens did more than what A-Rod did is that he lied in front of a group of politicians.

You keep bringing up politicians, as if that might make lying more acceptable, but people can be prosecuted for lying in court, lying to federal agents, lying on a mortgage application and many other places. If you take an oath in front of Congress, you should expect serious consequences when you lie. The power of Congress to compel truthful testimony has been used to benefit society in countless ways.

Clemens could have helped people by telling the truth. If McGwire is any example, a lot of people would welcome the truth. (Not me. But a lot.)

posted by rcade at 06:37 PM on August 22

Okay, even of this fairly lame thread. 1) I don't have a very high regard for the integrity of current members of Congress. Given current public opinion polls, I'm not alone in this thought. To my way of thinking, one ought to be held accountable by people that are worthy of holding others accountable. Judge's have a very strict code of conduct imposed on them, not so much with Congress. They throw ethic violations at each other, but often nothing becomes of them. Yes, we can vote them out, and it appears that in about 75 days we will do that to a lot of the current bunch (on both sides of the aisle...this is not a left vs. right issue to me)

2) It was never about what is going to happen, or about what can legally happen, I was just stating my humble opinion that Clemens sitting in Leavenworth does me no good, and just raises my taxes. Fine the fool, and come up with a plan to have him do some good.

3) As I stated, many other than me have commented that what business did Congress really have getting involved in a MLB problem. There was rampant cheating going on in a recent promotion in my company, millions of dollars were paid out to people that fudged reports and lied about facts. Where was the Congressional hearing on that???? Oh, yeah, it was private business so we handled it.

4) The only difference between lying and perjury is where you do it. Both involve telling falsehoods. Numerous baseball players lied about PED usage, and some got very servere punishments, some were blackballed, some got absolutely no punishment, and a few got something inbetween. Same offense, different outcomes. Clemens is a fool, especially for asking for a hearing when he could have walked away like others did. Not diminishing why perjury is a serious offense, just don't think Congress should have been spending their time on this...or the BCS.

Back to the pool, it's a 105 here today!!!

posted by dviking at 07:00 PM on August 22

dviking, I guess I think that the Clemens case is a small tip of a very big iceberg, or perhaps a small thread in a big tangle of knotted-up yarn. I agree that it's not obvious what good Clemens going to jail would do for you personally...but that raises all kinds of other questions that really should be considered[1] as well, given that we've chosen to address the issue. For example, what would "doing good" look like, and who exactly should benefit? Leaving aside the fact that the crime in question is perjury and not PED usage -- I'm guessing you'd want Clemens to do something positive on the PED front and not go about lecturing the youth of America about not lying under oath -- I'm honestly unsure that Clemens could do anything positive to help out on the PED front. He appears to have used them quite cynically and in full knowledge of what he was doing -- what can he say now, for example, to try and convince young athletes that PED use is a bad idea? If you were a young athlete with a chance of making it to the elite level in your sport, would you believe anything he said on the subject?

[1] Note that "considered" != "resolved".

posted by lil_brown_bat at 08:01 PM on August 22

I think it has everything to do with perjury and little to do with steroids. Congress, while usually staffed by charlatans, is still an institution, and if you allow people to lie for such small things how can you expect the CEO of Exxon, or BP to tell the truth when they're called to come?

I think it is important that such ideas are protected.

Also, Roger Clemens is a huge fucking ass. So that's kind of two birds with one stone.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 08:49 PM on August 22

No, I absolutely don't want Clemens talking to youngsters.
I actually like my idea of fining any player the full amount of their earnings if it is proven they used banned PED's. I'm aware that is not how Congress works, but the money could be put to good use...no wait, it's Congress...well, in theory the money could be used in a positive sense.

My problem with the whole scenario is that the committee had very little to do with steroids. What were they going to do? They really didn't have any power to act, and I think everyone in that room knew that Clemens and half of baseball was using PED's. Congress was really trying to sweep the whole affair aside, but Clemens being the fool he is demanded a hearing.

I just don't think that the CEO's of Exxon/BP/Halliburton look at this case as any sort of deterrent. They are so lawyered up that it's hard to get a coherent sentence out of them, and they're surely not going to ask for a hearing. My point is that Congress ought to be going after BP, instead of wasting any valuable time on Clemens.

posted by dviking at 11:22 PM on August 22

If McGwire is any example, a lot of people would welcome the truth. (Not me. But a lot.)

Huh?

What example is there that people "welcomed the truth" from McGwire? If anything, it just shifted the version of scorn and anger from "LIAR!" to "CHEATER!"

posted by grum@work at 01:21 AM on August 23

I still think the bat throwing incident is the defining moment in Clemens' life and career.

Throw the "I'm too good to make training camp and road trips" in there and yep, that's what I'll remember about Clemens as well.

posted by mjkredliner at 02:37 AM on August 23

I have no doubt Clemens at least dabbled in PEDs. I don't think there's a smoking gun. It's a case of too many little things that have to be false for Clemens to be innocent, too many inconsistencies to explain away. But O.J. was guilty as hell even without DNA, so I'll believe the guilty verdict when I see it.

Actually, my point is that I find it odd that we pick and choose who were going to hold accountable for lying to the public.

It's you that's picking and choosing who we should hold accountable. You believe trying Clemens is a waste of money and time, so even though he perjured himself we shouldn't hold him accountable as we would someone else that was more despicable (I know, you'd fine him).

the only thing Clemens did more than what A-Rod did is that he lied in front of a group of politicians.

I find that to be a bizarre statement. I mean, that's the whole point. Clemens lied in front of congress and A-Rod didn't. One is very serious, one isn't. How is this an argument for anything? Clemens demanded the hearing and had high price attorneys that surely warned him what the stakes were. Hell, members of the congress that you revile so much warned Clemens to not lie. So he knew the difference between lying to a reporter and lying to congress. It makes all the difference in the world.

I clearly stated that Clemens needs to pay a price for lying, just see no benefit to him sitting in prison...did Martha Stewart sitting in prison really send much of a message?

More than a fine. I mean, nothing will stop people from doing stupid things, especially with huge egos in the mix, but I promise you prison is much more feared than a fine. No fine for those two (not sure what martha stewart has to do with this) would amount to anything more than a slap on the wrist. They're too wealthy. In prison your wealth does you little good.

if you hold Congress more favorably than I do, you're welcome to that opinion, not that the over-whelming majority of Americans join you in that... I don't have a very high regard for the integrity of current members of Congress. Given current public opinion polls

40 percent of Americans didn't vote in the last presidential elections, and that was the best number in years. Less will vote for congressional races. Ask almost anyone that tells you they're unhappy with congress why and the majority of the time you're going to get a generic answer that has nothing to do with anything congress has actually done (or they'll have no answer at all).

A large portion of the public believes jesus rode on dinosaurs. I understand your opinion of congress is negative, but to then point to the public that elected them as proof of anything seems weak.

I was just stating my humble opinion that Clemens sitting in Leavenworth does me no good, and just raises my taxes... I just don't think that the CEO's of Exxon/BP/Halliburton look at this case as any sort of deterrent.

Heh, you sound like Eric Cartman complaining about taxes. You're making a false analogy. Trying Clemens by itself isn't going to raise your taxes. Trying Clemens doesn't mean they can't indict 'insert company name here'. One is not causing the other. It's not like congress is sitting around thinking "we should really go after BP but dammit we just don't have time with the Clemens trial".

Sending Clemens to prison isn't suppose to do you good. It's to punish Clemens and keep others truthful.

but what if the fine is tied to income earned under false pretenses. In the financial world, fines are tied to how much a person gained via illegal activity. Perhaps the fine for Clemens is based on how much he earned while using PED's... As to a fitting punishment for Clemens (and all those involved with lying about PED's) is to have their cherished records taken away like the Olympics do

You really seem to just be throwing stuff against the wall and hoping something will stick; bringing up punishments that have nothing to do with what congress can actually do. The government believes Roger Clemens committing perjury during a hearing that he demanded. The system to deal with that is already in place; no need to change it for Clemens.

everyone was positive that Bonds was going to jail way back in the day.
posted by grum@work

Isn't one of the delays with Bonds' trial a certain person that refuses to testify and will go to jail to protect Bonds? I don't see Clemens having that good fortune.

What example is there that people "welcomed the truth" from McGwire? If anything, it just shifted the version of scorn and anger from "LIAR!" to "CHEATER!"
posted by grum@work

To be fair McGwire's 'truth' was that he 'only' used it so he'd be healthy enough to play, that it was his superb hand-eye coordination, hard work, and genetics that made him a great player, and that his home run ability was a 'gift by the man upstairs' (like congress, you'd think the man in the sky would have better things to do).

He claimed he couldn't remember what steroids he took (cue laughter) and only took small doses because he didn't want to look like 'Arnold Schwarzenegger or Lou Ferrigno'.

And the apology only came when he decided to come out from seclusion to become hitting coach.

I guess you could say that nothing he could have said would satisfy people, but I fail to see how much of that 'apology' isn't laughable.

posted by justgary at 03:18 AM on August 23

I still think the bat throwing incident is the defining moment in Clemens' life and career.

I recently saw a different angle of that defining moment. I had no idea how quickly and how hard Clemens threw the bat. I thought it was overblown, but he could have easily hurt someone (it takes place at about 2:25 in the video).

Of course, he said he thought it was the ball.

posted by justgary at 03:23 AM on August 23

Of course, he said he thought it was the ball.

That excuse is covered with weaksauce.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 08:24 AM on August 23

That's such a bizarre thing for Clemens to do, as if the bat fragments were an affront to him personally. Roid rage?

posted by rcade at 08:34 AM on August 23

What example is there that people "welcomed the truth" from McGwire?

McGwire has fans again. Ask them that question.

posted by rcade at 08:44 AM on August 23

I can't nor can anyone else call it definitively roid rage when Clemens threw the bat but if he said he "thought it was the ball" why didn't he throw it to first? That would be the out. It's another lie from someone who can't tell the truth. Also make him wear one of those funky old orange/yellow Astros uniforms while he is in the "house."

posted by gfinsf at 09:10 AM on August 23

Congress, while usually staffed by charlatans, is still an institution, and if you allow people to lie for such small things how can you expect the CEO of Exxon, or BP to tell the truth when they're called to come?

Then it is the CEO's that should be held to account for lying, but they are not. There is evidence that BP drastically understated the amount of oil being spilled in the gulf, despite internal documents to the contrary. The executives from tobacco companies definitely lied to Congress and they never faced any charges. Burris lied under oath about his appointment. There are no shortage of people lying under oath before Congress, and they are not held to account. Clemens is absolutely being held to a different standard. I suspect that it is because he doesn't have any sort of lobby backing him up.

I agree with dviking that throwing people like Clemens in jail is a waste of time and resources. Throw violent criminals in jail, and put non-violent criminals on house arrest or community service or some such thing. Our criminal justice system is designed to make money for the prison builders.

posted by bperk at 09:13 AM on August 23

I can't nor can anyone else call it definitively roid rage when Clemens threw the bat but if he said he "thought it was the ball" why didn't he throw it to first? That would be the out.

No, that would be the awesome.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 09:15 AM on August 23

Of course, he said he thought it was the ball.

What was he playing, kickball? Pegging Piazza, while satisfying, wouldn't have made the out.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 09:44 AM on August 23

What was he playing, kickball? Pegging Piazza, while satisfying, wouldn't have made the out. "Damnit, McNnamee, that B12 you just put in my ass just made me forget where to throw the bat, oops I mean the ball. Give me another Miller Lite so I can forget about today, I'll give you the empy to throw away. No problem."

posted by gfinsf at 10:13 AM on August 23

Pegging Piazza, while satisfying . . .

I'll just bet.

posted by yerfatma at 10:16 AM on August 23

You believe trying Clemens is a waste of money and time, so even though he perjured himself we shouldn't hold him accountable

I never said that, and you know it. Yes, I think a fine that is equal to 100% of his earnings that he received while using PED's sends quite a message..

......How is this an argument for anything? ..... Point is, congress really had no national interest at heart to even be involved with this issue, just as they don't with the BCS issue, but they stick their noses in it to help show the public what great public servents they are (my opinion, you're free to feel otherwise). So, given that, Clemens really shouldn't have even had the chance to lie to them. I've stated that the man is a fool for demanding a hearing.

Sending Clemens to prison isn't suppose to do you good I disagree with that. In the general sense of me being society at large, locking up violent people does me good even though they were never going to hurt me individually. A rapist in Spokane is not a threat to me, but I still benefit from him being behind bars. The behavior Clemens was involved in wasn't breaking a US law, it was a baseball rule. Which of course brings me back to my main point in that Congress shouldn't have been involved. bringing up punishments that have nothing to do with what congress can actually do

yeah, and you're doing a shitty job of reading my posts. I stated: I'm aware that is not how Congress works, but the money could be put to good use.

Odd that this crap comes up in election years isn't it?

posted by dviking at 10:53 AM on August 23

I disagree with that. In the general sense of me being society at large, locking up violent people does me good even though they were never going to hurt me individually. A rapist in Spokane is not a threat to me, but I still benefit from him being behind bars.

Leaving aside the fact that you're not society at large (you're one person, so why should you represent "society at large" any more than the other people who feel differently on this matter?), you haven't made any argument that it "does you good" for a violent criminal in Spokane to be locked up. You've merely asserted that it does. You've said nothing to differentiate the case of the violent criminal who never would hurt you, from the case of the perjurer who didn't lie in your court case.

I stated: I'm aware that is not how Congress works, but the money could be put to good use.

I'm not sure that's true, at least not according to the examples you've been using. I don't believe that judges have personal discretion to decide how to direct fines.

Odd that this crap comes up in election years isn't it?

Every year is an election year if you vote.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 11:13 AM on August 23

Violent criminals hurt society in numerous ways, all of which cause detrimental effects on each of us. Pain and suffering, Police/Fire/EMS expenses. Loss of peace of mind, and personal safety, could go on, won't.

do I really need to clarify again that I get that current regulations do not give Congress the ability to fine people...I thought I clearly pointed out that would be my preferrence.

As to every year being an election year???? Not exactly sure what your point on that is...Congress is up every other year, this year being one of those. For the record, I'd be very willing to put my voting record up against anyone's. Since turning 18 I have only missed a handful of chances to vote. the voter apathy in this country is troublesome to say the least!

posted by dviking at 11:47 AM on August 23

Violent criminals hurt society in numerous ways, all of which cause detrimental effects on each of us.

Yes, you asserted that before. It's still just an assertion, like your assertion that jailing someone for perjury does nothing to help society. I still don't see any reasoning that tells me why society is helped in the one case and not helped in the other.

do I really need to clarify again that I get that current regulations do not give Congress the ability to fine people

I think you meant to say that current regulations do not allow fines as punishment for perjuring oneself while speaking to Congress under oath (at least I hope that's what you meant). I'm not sure that's true. Jail time is definitely an option for perjury, but a fine may also be an option instead of jail time.

As to every year being an election year???? Not exactly sure what your point on that is

It's a statement of fact. I'm not questioning your voting record, but the term "election year" feeds the sort of apathetic thinking that says you should only vote when (and how) some media outlet tells you you should.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 12:05 PM on August 23

I never said that, and you know it.

Sure you have, over and over again.

yeah, and you're doing a shitty job of reading my posts.

My reading comprehension is fine. You simply make crap up as you go.

Instead of giving Clemens jail time if convicted, which would be the standard punishment, you believe he should be fined, because sitting in prison does you no good. When pointed out he's a rich guy and fining him wouldn't be much punishment, you say a fine equal to the money he made while on PEDs would be punishment. Of course, you know that's not possible, even though you keep bringing it up. You're just talking in circles and it does me no good to figure out where you're talking reality and where dvikings dream of a perfect world comes in.

(let's ignore that it's taking a trial to figure out if Clemens lied. The idea that they can somehow figure out the date Clemens started and stopped using PEDs is humorous.)

Go on though: congress sucks, your voting record is great, your taxes are going up...

posted by justgary at 12:29 PM on August 23

Back to the matter at hand... Elected officials have a vested interest in protecting the Youth of America. PED's and the perception thereof are a hot button issue in our society which do have an impact on said Youth. Thus, Congress most certainly has an interest - some would call it an obligation - to investigate. We're not talking all of Congress spending all of their resources - we're talking about one committee spending a handful days here. And when a figure so prominent as Clemens insists on having a voice, of course Congress will give him his day. So when he went and made a mockery of the proceedings, one important issue evolved into another - both of which are significant in their own way - and action had to be taken.

posted by MW12 at 12:41 PM on August 23

McGwire has fans again. Ask them that question.

I'll be surprised if out of 1000 people who professed to hating McGwire because of his implied/suggested use of PED (before admitting it), if even 3 of those people are now "fans" of McGwire.

It would be like suggesting those that have a good hate on for Bonds (or Clemens) would suddenly call themselves "fans" of Bonds (or Clemens) if he were to admit PED use (regardless of legal implications).

posted by grum@work at 01:27 PM on August 23

You've said nothing to differentiate the case of the violent criminal who never would hurt you, from the case of the perjurer who didn't lie in your court case.

I think it is a bit silly to nitpick this. Is dviking supposed to provide sociological research of the effects of incarcerating violent criminals with nonviolent criminals? Is he supposed to discuss recidivism rates of different types of non-jail punishments vs. jail punishments? What kind of data are you looking for? And, furthermore, what kind of absolute jail-lover would one have to be to take the contrary argument that anyone who lies under oath ought to be locked up?

I disagree with dviking that Congress should have brought to light this issue. Congressional hearings are rather effective in getting changes made without Congress having to pass laws. Still, the arguments in favor of the (selective) prosecution in this case pretty much resort to Clemens is an ass.

posted by bperk at 01:38 PM on August 23

And when a figure so prominent as Clemens insists on having a voice, of course Congress will give him his day. So when he went and made a mockery of the proceedings, one important issue evolved into another - both of which are significant in their own way - and action had to be taken.

This. Clemens demanded a hearing, and despite warnings from everywhere he decided to regurgitate the same nonsense he had peddled elsewhere, hoping that his name would be enough to cover the bullshit and inconsistency.

A writer I can't remember once said that Clemens wasn't dumb, he was just child like, where everything revolved around him. Spot on.

posted by justgary at 02:29 PM on August 23

Clemens demanded a hearing, and despite warnings from everywhere he decided to regurgitate the same nonsense he had peddled elsewhere, hoping that his name would be enough to cover the bullshit and inconsistency.

Alleged bullshit and inconsistency.

His primary accuser is also someone who has lied to police a few times. Let's not assume he's some paragon of truth and virtue who will expose the evil that is Roger Clemens.

The trial will be interesting.

A writer I can't remember once said that Clemens wasn't dumb, he was just child like, where everything revolved around him. Spot on.

This, however, is something I have no problem agreeing with.

posted by grum@work at 03:51 PM on August 23

I think it is a bit silly to nitpick this. Is dviking supposed to provide sociological research of the effects of incarcerating violent criminals with nonviolent criminals?

Why not? If you're going to make assertions of a sociological nature, about how society is and isn't served by various criminal sentences, it seems a bit of sociological research as a reference isn't too much to ask.

And, furthermore, what kind of absolute jail-lover would one have to be to take the contrary argument that anyone who lies under oath ought to be locked up?

I don't know, bperk, but when you find one, will you let me know? Because nobody's made that argument here, you know. All I've done is contest the notion that Clemens deserves some kind of special consideration -- and what is special consideration, if not wanting to have all consideration of a possible jail sentence dismissed out of hand?

posted by lil_brown_bat at 04:43 PM on August 23

Let's not assume he's some paragon of truth and virtue who will expose the evil that is Roger Clemens.

Not talking about Brian McNamee. I'm talking about problems like this:

Clemens responded by saying that Pettitte must have misunderstood and that what Clemens had said was that his wife Debbie had used HGH... But there's just one little problem: both Clemens and McNamee told the Committee that Debbie Clemens didn't use HGH until 2002 or 2003, so Clemens couldn't have told Pettitte in 1999 or 2000 that his wife had used HGH.

As far as McNamee, yep, not the best witness.

But you have to believe he's lying in regards to Clemens despite the fact that the two other players he named (Pettitte and Chuck Knoblauch) said he was telling the truth.

You have to believe that Pettitte misremembered the conversation.

You have to believe the mass on his ass (poet) was caused by B-12 even though that's extremely rare and more likely with steroids.

If the syringe has Clemens DNA and PED remnants, and they're able to show they're old, you have to believe McNamee planned this long ago, or is some kind of criminal mastermind.

Short of a check showing Clemens bought PEDs, and I don't believe he's that dumb (and he'd deny it anyway) I'm not sure what else you want. Clemens needs to hope either something else comes out, something we already know falls apart, or his natural charm results in a not guilty verdict.

posted by justgary at 06:16 PM on August 23

I'm not sure what else you want.

I want to see the evidence be produced in court.
So far, it's been unnamed sources and speculation by the media.

The media also said Clemens' name was on the "Grimsley list", and that turned out to be 100% false.

posted by grum@work at 07:39 PM on August 23

Sure you have, over and over again.

Seriously, where did I say that? I admit to saying that having him park his foolish ass in prision for 15 months does me little good. But, I never said he shouldn't be heald accountable, so stop making shit up and accussing others of it.

My reading comprehension is fine. You simply make crap up as you go.

No, your comprehension has quite a bit to be desired. I clearly stated that I was aware that fines/community service was not how Congress operated, just that I found that, and having all of his records striped, a more suitable punishment. Think these guys don't care about their records and the millions???? I think he'd take 15 months in a white collar facility over having to pay back all of his salary and see his record tarnished.

posted by dviking at 11:33 PM on August 23

I want to see the evidence be produced in court. So far, it's been unnamed sources and speculation by the media.

Agreed, but I think that goes without saying. In fact, I already said that:

something we already know falls apart

posted by justgary at 11:34 PM on August 23

So very tired of the PED story. So many players used them, and we'll never see the full list. So many lied about their use, yet only a select few are being held accountable. Some are vilified without concrete proof, while some are heralded just because they made a halfhearted apology after they were caught.

Clemens is a fool for demanding to testify and then lying. However, are the liars in Congress really the right ones to hold him accountable? Waxman loves the spotlight more than Lindsay Lohan does, and to see him pushing for the indictment just makes me want it all to go away.

Baseball either needs to seriously clean up this mess, or just issue a statement saying that amnesty is being granted for all use prior to now, and that they'll inforce the policy 100% going forward. Clemens needs to pay some price for lying, though I see no benefit to the man sitting in a Federal Prison. Congress needs to stop wasting time getting in the spotlight while dealing with trivial matters like this, and start working on the long list of more serious issues facing this country

My original post, which I stand by. Tired of the PED saga. We'll never see the full list of users. Some are being held more accountable than others (not really directed at Clemens, there are plenty of cases). Some are vilified (Bonds) some are heralded after a weak apology (A-Rod)

clemens is a fool , and needs to pay a price for lying to Congress, though I personally see no value of his sitting in prision, prefer the fines (know it won't happen just wish it could).

Baseball needs to clean this up one way or the other...my wish, you're free to have other thoughts.

Not a big fan of Congress using cases like this to appear more "worthy" during election years. Not saying this as left vs. right issue, as Congress has done this before with Republicans in charge.

Sue me if you disagree, thought that was what this site was for, but to insinuate that I said something other than this is wrong.

posted by dviking at 11:41 PM on August 23

My original post, which I stand by. Tired of the PED saga. We'll never see the full list of users. Some are being held more accountable than others (not really directed at Clemens, there are plenty of cases). Some are vilified (Bonds) some are heralded after a weak apology (A-Rod)

The fact that justice isn't perfect is not sufficient reason to abandon all attempts to enforce accountability.

Not a big fan of Congress using cases like this to appear more "worthy" during election years.

I'd agree with you if I thought this had the remotest chance of making anyone in Congress appear "worthy". It doesn't look to me like members of Congress are exactly rushing to be associated with this one.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 08:42 AM on August 24

I'd agree with you if I thought this had the remotest chance of making anyone in Congress appear "worthy

Sometimes politicians attempt to make themselves appear more "worthy" via distractions. Witch hunts, phoney photo-ops, Mission Accomplished banners, etc. Again, this happens on both sides of the aisle.

As to the accountability issue, do you really think MLB is holding everyone to the same level of accountability? Congress has to move forward with holding Clemens responsible for lying, and contrary to some posts above, I have never advocated otherwise.

posted by dviking at 11:03 AM on August 24

As to the accountability issue, do you really think MLB is holding everyone to the same level of accountability?

No; in fact, I believe I just made the point that it wasn't perfect justice. Look, see? Here are the words I wrote:

"The fact that justice isn't perfect is not sufficient reason to abandon all attempts to enforce accountability."

It's fairly easy to construct a nice "do you really think" strawman if you take one word from a sentence and ignore the rest.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 12:44 PM on August 24

Sometimes politicians attempt to make themselves appear more "worthy" via distractions.

The problem of steroid abuse is not a distraction. There has been a significant increase in steroid use among high school age children since 1991. Athletes who abuse steroids for great personal gain send a terrible message to young people. Congress did the right thing by calling hearings on this matter.

posted by rcade at 12:54 PM on August 24

"The fact that justice isn't perfect is not sufficient reason to abandon all attempts to enforce accountability."

dviking was never suggesting any such thing though.

posted by bperk at 12:55 PM on August 24

Oh, eyeroll. I'm done with this foolishness.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 01:49 PM on August 24

I think he'd take 15 months in a white collar facility over having to pay back all of his salary and see his record tarnished.

A conviction for lying in front of congress that he never did PEDs does tarnish his records. Being taken away in handcuffs would be a lasting image of Clemens. A fine wouldn't be as devastating. The idea of taking ALL his salary is a pipe dream that you keep bringing back up despite admitting it would and could never happen.

Or maybe my reading comprehension is failing me again. Your call professor dviking.

posted by justgary at 02:45 PM on August 24

yeah, your comprehension sucks. Mainly, because I've stated at least a dozen (you count, I don't have the energy) that is a wish, not a reality. Clearly, a $50,000 fine means nothing, but I never suggested that.

posted by dviking at 04:47 PM on August 24

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