"I saw (EPO) in his refrigerator...I saw him inject it more than one time. Like I did, many, many times."--Tyler Hamilton on Lance Armstrong
"Congratulations to (at)eki-ekimov on his 3rd Olympic Gold Medal!!"--Lance's response, on Twitter
The brotherhood of doping, what Landis termed cycling's mafia, has crumbled. The rules that bound it, the secrets, the values, the doctors, and the fans (the ones with any sense, that is), are now in the open. The head bro, the don, remains defiant, gathering his loyal bros around him, but nearly all the bros have capitulated or been snared: Landis, Gusev, Heras, Chechu, Andreu, Ferrari, and so on.
Unfortunately, the mechanisms that empowered the brotherhood of doping--the UCI, team directors such as Bruyneel and Riis, and national organzations like that of Spain--remain in place.
Did you watch Contador launch in the big ring on Etna? Was it possible to watch that without dismissing it as laboratory assisted?
Right now, the majority seems to be on the side of Lance--that is, they believe, in the way Mormons believe that ancient Jews built boats and sailed to America, or that in 1978 God changed his mind about black people, or that the Garden of Eden was in Jackson County, MO (for further details, see vid):
Humans react in predictable ways given situations: for example, they usually choose to break rules for personal gain if the rules cannot be enforced. It's easy to form alliances with others who also break rules for personal gain; those alliances crumble when the chance for personal gain crumbles.
That's life, that's human nature, that's what I believe happened with U.S. Postal.
For me, it's much easier to believe that than to believe Lance never used drugs to boost his performance, especially given the vast testimony of witnesses, his association with Dr. Ferrari, and, not least, his unearthly performance in bike races. Possibly, that's because if you're powerless, you're more likely to believe conspiracy theories.
But I could be wrong, just as I could be wrong about Mormonism. I don't mean to pick on it, as a belief system, by the way. I only mention it because there are things in Mormonism many of us find hard to believe, just as there are things in my own beliefs that others may find equally implausible.
Power, not only political power, but the kind your powermeter measures, corrupts us. It corrupts Supreme Court Justices, and it corrupts alliances.
At some point, the bros before EPO code breaks down, and that's what's going on.