Strict Liability in Doping
Great observations. I agree Contador was targeted by WADA and the UCI, not so much because of the actual amount of clen but their suspicions about transfusions etc. My question is, how fair is that?
It seems to me it is totally illogical and a lot disingenuous to apply strict liability to a doping case where the evidence is clearly there was no performance enhancing effect IF the purpose of applying that standard was to indirectly go after him for suspicion of transfusions and plasticisers.
As others have pointed out his sample was not tested for plasticisers per se because the test either did not exist or it existed but had not as yet been approved ( I am not sure what was the case regarding AC)
One of the reasons timberland boots for women that professional cycling is so small (and such a ‘good ole boy’s network’) is that the promoters have managed to do a fantastic job of neutering the professional cyclists. I can’t imagine a more powerless pawn than a professional cyclist.
A professional cyclist at work has almost no control over his working conditions. These working conditions are dictated to him by his “Union.” This is ironic because the UCI is anything but a union. It is a club where cycling promoters pick the dictator who is going to boss the riders around.
I’m not going to join in the chorus of ultra st timberland boots for women rict anti doping advocates until the riders are empowered enough to have a meaningful say in their working conditions.
Great question and I am not sure of the answer, but I will give it a stab.
Obviously the other cyclist would have to be the proverbial clean cyclist and expert evidence from an accredited pharmacologist or kineseologist might have to be used. But is that too much for a cyclist to ask when his/her timberland boots for women career is at stake?
Breyne: “The amount [of clenbuterol] found in [Alberto] Contador’s urine, the UCI told me, were tiny compared to mine.”
I realize this is what Breyne was told. 50 picograms or 50 trillionths of a gram any amount of clen say 1millionth of a gram would make Breyne’s seem unduly large. At this stage we simply do not know the amount. The issue I am hoping people will address is this.
Should there be strict liability or should WADA (and) all the national anti doping agencies) and the UCI be required to prove that the amount in fact had a performance enhancing effect in each case. performance enhancement and a fundamental issue of due process. Unless there was in fact an enhancement of performance, is it fair to impose strict liability or has cycling sunk to such a low depth that the only answer to the drug scourge is strict liability?
No, absolutely not. The issue is not whether something was taken and enhanced performance, but whether something was taken to enhance performance if, in the event, it did not, the athlete is not thereby exhonerated.
Those with a legal bent would recognise a mens rea and an actus reus the taking is the actus, the intention is the mens the successful outcome is neither here nor there.
If you shoot a politician to instigate a revolution, you don’t get off if the revolution doesn’t happen, or frankly if the politician survives. The success of the motive is not the point, the point is the intention and attempt.
Strict liability makes sense for all the reasons DirtyWorks mentions. Where it gets difficult is when strict liability is combined with ultra sensitive tests. There will come a point eventually when the tests are so sophisticated that many or even most people have some microscopic contamination some of the time. A low reading might indicate background noise, but it might also mean doping several days or even weeks previously.
This is a tricky problem to solve. every week) for some substances. For instance if the glow time for a performance enhancing level was 3 weeks, a weekly test with a very low threshold would eliminate the possibility that the athlete ever took the performance enhancing amount. Clearly there would still need to be other surprise tests for other substances.
[QUOTE=DirtyWorks;1378942]Your proposal of arguing the merits of quantities found means jokers like Meeker walk away. a performance enhancing drug IF and only if it has a performance enhancing effect.
Clen of and in itself is not a performance enhancing drug unless and until there is a threshold present that causes the performance enhancing effect. In AC’s case there was no performance enhancing effect or even the ability of the miniscule quantity found to have a performance enhancing effect.
By coincidence I read the Meeker decision last night. In his case the prohibited substance was 19 norandrosterone which had a threshold of 2ng/ml. Meeker was way above the threshold at 30ng/ml. If he had been below the threshold no liability would have applied because by implication the drug could not have had a performance enhancing effect.
Meeker testified that he must have ingested the drug when he took supplements 1 hour before he raced and during the race from a container that had the supplements and a white powder that had the 19 norandrosterone However the evidence he presented was found to lack sufficient proof to lower the automatic two year suspension he received. In other words his explanation was rejected by the panel.
In Contador’s case there was no threshold and there should have been because it is impossible for 50 picograms to timberland boots for women have given him a performance advantage. That would have been the fair thing in that case.
I empathize with your concern about doping but the whole purpose of starting this thread was to examine the fairness of absolute/strict liability. You clearly are on the strict liability side, whereas I am suggesting more fairness in the process. I respect your point of view, because it is a good argument in the face of the last 30 years of doping scandals. I just disagree with it.