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Tuesday, January 22, 2013

THE RISE AND FALL OF TUN LANCE ARMSTRONG

By Howl Pillay
Thursday. 17 January. 2013. Lance Armstrong makes his confession to Oprah and the World. And however much we may hate the excesses of Corporate Malaysia, Astro included, there are times we are thankful for the services they bring to our doorsteps. Yes, these services are not for free. We understand that. We pay our dues.


Now before you continue reading, look at this pic and read the caption below. Please,Please  Lookout for him.

Yao Zhen Zhong he could be in your neighbour's house, he could be in the street next to yours, Look out for him!!!
But we dream of a level playing field. Not one where political connections, race and allegiance to a particular party decide the outcome of an application, a tender, an examination.... The list goes on. We are weary of the unfairly and unjustly loaded dice. After three decades of wheeling and dealing, those who are incapable of creating great wealth through honest endeavour are now its owners.
We are disgusted that an unseen and secretive hand decides winners and the losers. We resent that big business has become another species of organised crime. We hate it  that those entrusted with our trust end up stealing from us, the Rakyat, the People. We rue the day we voted in a politician whose credo was and still is ‘the ends justify the means’. We have virtually given up on politics and the politicians of this land  but we believe passionately that Sports at least must remain free of cheats and cheating.
But Lance Armstrong took everyone for a ride. His ego and his greed got the better of him. He is not the first or the last cheat we will see. Surely even greater cheats will come after him. But for the moment he is one of the greatest. His confession and disgrace was long overdue. The United States of America Anti-Doping Agency, USADA reports that Lance Armstrong ran ‘the most sophisticated, professionalised and successful doping program that sports has ever seen’.
And when this cheat picked up enough courage to make a confession, he deserved our attention. We want to know how he got away with it for so long. He had for much of his career faced persistent accusations of doping; of having an unfair advantage. He had for years denied every accusation. He proclaimed his innocence under oath countless times. But the evidence kept mounting. Then days ago he bowed to the inevitable. Unlike our politicians he was clever enough to know the game was up.
And so I watched in fascination - his facial expression, his body language, his careful choice of words. Physically he is a small man really - five feet nine, 160 lbs. But he is a man who is sure of himself. And then there were the things he said. The justification, the motive, the pain he now will have to endure - “I will spend the rest of my life apologising to all those I had caused pain, harm”. His nickname at the height of his fame was ‘The Boss’. He must have gloried in it.  As head honcho and the numero uno, the titles, the accolades, the honours followed.
He, who had undergone a orchidectomy and survived third stage testicular cancer goes on to win the Tour de France seven times in a row. If he wanted to he could have easily won our Tour de Langkawi over and over again to our utter boredom. But he was after bigger game.  He reigns supreme in cycling for a decade and more. And all the while he was cheating on a grand scale and making a huge fortune in the process through endorsements, appearances, (yes, appearances!) and sponsorships. He held his nerve. He beat off all threats to his growing empire of ill-gotten gains.
And there were lawsuits against those who had the temerity to suggest that something was amiss. Then came the threats, the disclaimers, the bullying, the strenuous denials with a straight face, eyes unflinching.  Now he admits to motherly, matronly Oprah and a worldwide audience that he is ‘a guy who expected to get whatever he wanted and to control every outcome’. And the more I watch him, the more I become convinced I know someone like him; very like him but who plies a different trade from Lance Armstrong.
It is the dirty trade of dirty politics played with consummate skill and panache. Lance is a descendant of immigrants - his great grandfather was Norwegian. Lance was greedy. His ego was untamed and voracious. He had neither grace nor class. Lance operates numerous businesses of his own including a coffee outlet in Austin and thinks himself knowledgeable about business, commerce and entrepreneurship. He is a multi-millionaire many times over, if not a billionaire. And even in the interview there was little to suggest contrition, or sadness or remorse. These last mentioned traits are not part of his character.
But there are differences between Lance and the guy I was thinking of. Lance could tell a lie looking directly into the camera. He did not look down or away, avoiding the camera. Lance never was an ill-informed know-all. And not once did Lance stammer and endlessly repeat, ...What’s its name....what’s its name.....And Lance for all his trickery had not succeeded in perverting the course of justice, screw up the education system, or loot the national treasury.
Nor did Lance enrich a cabal of cronies who took to strutting around like they are God’s gift to nationalism. Or make corruption an acceptable political credo. Nor did he doom a country to a legacy of political greed and avarice and eventually one day to decay and decline. And then thankfully the show comes to an end.  
Disgusted, I turn away with only one thing on my mind - a wishful thought really. I want to give this disgraced champion cyclist the highest title in this land. Not Dato, not Tan Sri but Tun!  Tun Lance Armstrong! For what, you ask? For reminding us that one day soon we must expose dead or alive the greatest cheat of all in this land - the clever dope who duped us all.
“Tun, stand up! This Court finds you guilty of the most vile act in the political history of this land - the corruption of a nation’s soul. In accordance with the law you are hereby sentenced to.......”

1 comment:

  1. We will act immediately to look out for Yao Zhen Zhong's whereabout. We will inform all the members of our Rockers Inc. JB about Yao Zhen Zhong, he maybe in our neighborhood. Besides, we will post and forward this in our respective medias and face books.

    Rockers Inc.

    As much as we are disgusted and weary about our environment of decide, the pretentious formality of ourselves are equated with prevailingly kindred.

    Hence, to associate oneself with a cause, even the honorary title of 'Tun'  to liken a cheater entitled Tun for  Lance Armstrong is a derogatory equation. In fact, it is insinuating that the honorable bearers of the title 'Tuns' are of subtlety and perhaps deploring the greatest cheaters as equated.

    As it is equated to the holders of Tun, the greatest cheater and thief seemingly, it is also begetting the unfairly and unjustly loaded dice.

    ReplyDelete