Thursday, 22 May 2008

WADA long trip it's been: Landis Star Destiny

This article is dedicated to the memory of Albert Hofmann, a man whose career had nearly as much impact on our times, distinctly different but, in certain aspects similar, to those impacts of the 'great' names of the Atomic Age: for Albert is the first researching scientist to have discovered LSD.

It has been said, amongst friends of WADAwatch, that Hofmann was to the neuron, what Robert Oppenheimer was to the atom.

But give thanks to the Source of your Beliefs, that Herr Hofmann wasn't linked to any sports–medicine scandals, later in his career.

As researching scientist and inventor of lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD), Albert's own discovery (a discovery first rejected, then resurrected) lay dormant for several years after his initial researches ended by rejecting that unknown substance, for its incapacity to do what had been predicted. However, Hofmann claims to have suffered 'an epiphany', and either re–made his formulae or pulled 'Batch A' out of the deep freeze; some four years or more after his first analysis, one drop fell on his arm, and the rest of psychodelia is now history).

Yet it's a good day to take a small 'trip' through 'what–if' land: hang on to these sardonic, ironic or satirical thoughts...

What if WADA could accredit more labs that work to the highest degree of scientific purity of knowledge and results–management: just like the French LNDD lab?

What if, thanks to the due diligence of those Laboratories (who don't really have to prove their accreditation exists by putting valid documentation about themselves online...), we find another FORTY major Star Athletes, whose defense (because, of course, they were 'busted' for being just one little smidgeon over the limit, in one of Several factors that make up a true and defendible positive) takes a wee bit longer than the swift and simple Justice for which WADA (cough) is renowned: just like the 'simple' Landis cycling–testosterone Tour de France 2006 case?

What if WADA chose to proceed with aiding (without any solid legal WADA CODE basis for these off–budget expenditures) in financing the legal costs: just like the Landis cycling–testosterone Tour de France 2006 case?

What if
WADA's Director General cannot have his desired system of 'loser–pays lawsuit costs' implemented by his many many many friends in CAS and the IOC, and thus would have to pay up to $1.3 million in appeals costs: just as was prejudicially and publicly proposed during the appeal of the Landis cycling–testosterone Tour de France 2006 case?


The fact is, WADA is paying five percent of its forecasted and approved 2008 budget revenue for the solidification of its 'theory' (whatever that may be has stayed silent) as to Landis' culpability. Following the link above, will show that WADA attributed 7.73 per cent of its budget to 'legal and finance'. At this rate, they won't be able to go to Beijing, without a drastic influx of cash.

IF WADA had 5 – 10 more similar cases annually, WADA would have at least half of its budget devoted to CODE litigation 'enforcement'. Remember, we're talking about a budget made up of contributions offered by Signatories and States, and then matched by the IOC, the expenditures of which, one pre–supposes, must fall in accordance with the Roles and Responsibilities of WADA (CODE Art. 20.7).

WADA could go out of business, if the above scenario was NOT hypothetical. It cannot sustain the legal costs of its ADOs through its annual budget, and is certainly broaching the boundaries of just causes, by discrimination as to whose cases must be won through the subsidization of ADOs' legal costs... When will countries 'up' their donations, if they see the money being used to fight a losing battle?

Wouldn't it be a hell of a lot easier (taking imaginary words out of the mouth of its past President, Dick Pound), safer and less antagonizing, to




WADAwatch is committed to this ideal; we do not offer empty ravings (very often, it is hoped). Here are five steps to WADA CODE achievement.

{These short excerpts may, as
this month turns to June, become
individual WADAwatch articles}


Remove the systemic legal conflict of interest that surrounds the private arbitration system.

Once, a decade or more ago, the Internet itself was going through a governance 'phase–shift', which included a determination that the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) would be the proper venue for a 'industry–sensitive' arbitration body for Domain name/trademark owners' resolution panels. Within two years or so of that being established, and thus having been given its own 'monopoly income source' for this globally–interested service, the ICANN Corporation agreed with its critical detractors and allowed at least two other bodies to hear Domain–name/TM disputes.

WADA could do the same, and open the world of arbitration to more than one 'family'; with due respect, CAS is not the only body of arbitrators that could hear these cases.


Shift arbitration panels from the current 'two against one' to a universal standard of Four. The Athlete would be allowed to appoint two of the panel; the opposing ADO party would still appoint one arbitrator, and whichever 'house' (see ONE) could also appoint one; the ADO party would have two vetos for the names proposed by the 'house'.

Combining that radical change, with a rule that conviction takes Three or Four Arbitrators, should make this biased system become more fair, and provide eloquence to persuasive decisions, and drafting them could be more unassailable. Having the power to both appoint two arbitrators, it would then behoove either side to have convinced at least one of the opposite side that their case didn't hold.


Redraft the loophole–ridden, inquisitorial WADA CODE 2007, and demonstrate for the first time in a decade that WADA wants to 'bring' the Athletes into compliance, rather than 'inquisitioning' them. The damage having been extended recently in Madrid, the likelihood of this happening are...?


Find a better way to integrate the past dopers (who lived in the eras of Winken, Blinken and Nod), who WANT TO CONFESS, an opportunity to be treated as 'courageous' rather than, at best, hypocritical, and at worst: criminal.

It is wrong for an Athlete to dope. No argument.

But if people that DO confess, are strung out to dry, then an inherent systemic problem augments, instead of turning to the good that such a 'weapon' could be.

For WADAwatch, one of the heights of hypocrisy is to see someone like Christian Prudhomme, now director of the Tour de France, casting aspersions against former victor (of the 1996 Tour de France) Bjarne Riis.

As a former sports journalist, Prudhomme: a) earned his living writing about Riis' exploits in the Tour; b) never once wrote a word about suspicions of his doping (we presume, perhaps too much so).

If the response by those 'in power' to today's trends towards 'confession' mean anything, it is obviously this:

If you ever DOPED, don't ever tell anyone:
you'll lose your job, your status, shame your family...
just keep it a secret.

That is the wrong approach, but it is the approach 'endorsed' by WADA (via former president Pound), the Tour de France (who hands out nearly as many 'persona non grata' cards than VIP invitations), and others.

Inviting Confession, and Absolution, is the way to create peer–pressure for positive ends.


Break the WADA 'Omerta', that disallows Lab Specialists and Directors from being called as experts against other laboratories whose positive AAFs are being analysed in these sports–doping hearings.

Rather than hiding behind a self–protective system, these people should be able to stand in 'court' and justify the 'standards' other labs must uphold, rather than justifying the inexcusable 'manquements' that arise in any human endeavor.

This goes to the core of a systemic problem: WADA should not be paying laboratories to mutually protect 'evidence of guilt'. They should be encouraging an 'open–source' concept, in which the science and standards are clearly derived, and the human failure (similar to the 'human failure' of a doping Athlete) to uphold the science should be severely punished: two years for an Athlete, two years suspension for a laboratory facility that failed its job.


Patents. There is an aspect to the system of patenting new bio–medical advances, that can be explored, perhaps through UNESCO, in concert with the World Intellectual Property Organization. This idea stems from this author's previous professional experiences (six years as a Consultant contract staff at WIPO); and it's a real–world systemic proposal being developed here at WADAwatch.

When the right time comes, or in front of the right audience, the 'Epiphany' will be revealed.

We're waiting at the phone, Mr. WADA...

WADA, for reasons that do not appear (to this observer) totally coherent, dumped its $1.3 million dollars into the appeal of Floyd Landis, and thus has taken upon itself perhaps as much as eighty percent (80%) of the costs for a process in which it has 'no say'. Remember, WADA may appear as a party to an appeal, through the generosity of CODE Article 13.2 (et seq.).

That isn't to state that WADA handed USADA a blank check, it's a little more clear than that. Richard Young, who wears so many hats in this ring that he's become a one–man carrousel, is:

  1. The shining light attorney who had directed the drafting of WADA's original CODE; and,

  2. Has been, for many a year, on the CAS list of attorney–arbitrators (Click on -Y-); and

  3. Lead prosecutor of the Original Legal Landis hearing (we must differentiate between the legitimate, and the illegitimate: the latter is a purely French recipe), held in California in May of 2007;

  4. President of the Committee that achieved, in Madrid last November, the new! and improved! WADA CODE 2007, scheduled for rapid integration to the Signatory International Federations that make up and represent the active players (FYI: the Athletes) within the WADA family.

Yes, Mr Young, has apparently not found any conflict of interest in running a prosecution under the rules he indirectly drafted (the UCI cycling Federation, certainly, is a historic and once–enthusiastic Signatory for WADA), in front of a panel in which he knows every participating arbitrator (They may even be 'roomies' in Beijing later this summer, running the on–site CAS arbitrations of rules–violations or doping situations), is trying to win a case that he already won once. But, for this spin around the merry-go-wrong, his fees appear to have been paid by WADA not the USADA that had first engaged him.

We, the many 'Children of the Damned–Floyd–Case', are still sinking our teeth into the lethargic and painfully slow–moving world of International Diplomacy, in the Olympic Movement sense (it's not any better in the UN, if past personal/professional experiences are permitted). And when Mr Young was first engaged by USADA, perhaps they did it knowing exactly that 'Richard' knew nearly everyone in the entire system.

It remains scary to know how far one can get in the law, with a 'wink' between friends.

In watching WADA, instincts must help.

The 'smells bad' test is a primary tool, nearly a hammer.

Richard Young being paid by WADA to redo the case he won once, which is a case 'de novo' (not a review or reversal of the prior decision), in front of his 'select few' peers, doesn't exude the pure aroma of justice

And of course, for Floyd Landis, one can only say 'oh what a long, strange trip it's been...'


The opinions expressed by WADAwatch are
strictly formed with the purpose of inciting WADA to adhere
to its Fundamental Rationale, achieve its goals and fulfil
the aspirations of its Signatories, in achieving the
highest possible level of objective, neutral
science in sport-doping control.

Watching WADA...


2008 all copyrights reserved


whareagle said...

WADA, I don't know if you saw this, but this was just published on slowtwitch. You may want to read it and contact the PhD.

ZENmud productions said...

Thanks Whareagle...

I'll add this to the article...

NB: For the record. WADA is WADA, and this is the WADAwatch blog... there is no association (IOW: I do not think that Whareagle thought we are associated (except in spirited opposition) with WADA, the multi-million dollar agency that does... stuff)

whareagle said...

Yeah, I know - you're the lone voice of reason out there on the blogosphere. I just thought it would be an interesting read (there are 3 parts to it), based on our previous discussions. It's just too easy for a supp company to accidentally let something banned slip in. It's also too easy for a company to make some incredible claim.

ZENmud productions said...


If I may suggest, you could use the email address (up there on right column) so that we can collaborate a bit?

If that's not to your liking, please keep coming back here. I am still in the midst of too much work, to have time to interview an acquaintance that runs a nut-supp company here in CH. Stand by for that AND Floyd/CAS in June!

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