Viewpoints: Olympic cleanliness

Sunday, February 28, 2010 at 11:13pm

From Toronto's Sunday Globe and Mail comes an interesting 'closing ceremony' on Olympic athletes and drugs:

The Vancouver Olympics are shaping up to be the cleanest in history in terms of blood doping, with only two positive tests for relatively minor offences.

The positive test results involved two hockey players — Svetlana Terenteva of Russia and Lubomir Visnovsky, a Slovakian who plays for the Edmonton Oilers. Each used cold remedies that contained drugs banned by the World Anti-Doping Agency.

The International Olympic Committee ruled the infractions were minor and issued both only a reprimand.

Vancouver's tally of just two cases compares with seven each at the 2002 Winter Games in Salt Lake City and the 2006 Games in Turin.

"I think there is some message from this minimal amount of doping infringements [and it] is that at least for those products that we are absolutely 100 per cent able to trace, there has been a deterrent effect," said IOC president Jacques Rogge. "So we see a trend there. But of course we have to be very objective. We cannot trace everything."

Coming into Vancouver, Olympic organizers promised the most stringent testing in history at a Games with 70 per cent more tests that in Turin. As of Saturday, IOC officials had conducted 2,237 tests, close to their goal of 2,500 (there are about 2,500 athletes at the Games). More than 30 athletes had been banned from the Vancouver Games in the months leading up to the Olympics, according to WADA.

Agency officials would not give a precise number or reveal the nationality of the violators. However, no Canadians were among those banned. Mr. Rogge cautioned Saturday that there could still be more positive tests from Vancouver.

WADA keeps blood and urine samples for eight years so that if a test for a certain banned substance is developed, officials can retest samples from previous competitions. Since the 2008 Olympics in China, six athletes have been banned and stripped of their medals.

Send comments and letters via email to editor@nashvillecitypaper.com

172 Comments on this post:

By: dooley on 3/1/10 at 4:46

Now if they could stop it in the Tennessee legislature we would be in better shape.

By: dargent7 on 3/1/10 at 5:46

While I understand when you have a "cold" you want it to go away, quickly.
Especially during Olympic competition. But, don't these hockey pucks know by now, the "cold medicines" contain ephedrine, nor-ephedrine, a banned substance?
I guess that's why they chose hockey.

By: Loner on 3/1/10 at 6:09

Good morning, Nashville.

I can understand banning performance-enhancing drugs. I suppose, but the list of banned substances is huge and ever-growing and it includes items like narcotics and Cannabis....nobody considers those things to be performance enhancers, but they test for them anyway.

The IOC's drug testing program must be incredibly expensive, the storage fees alone for all those samples, stored for 8 years, must cost millions of dollars.

If there is any easy "gold" to be snatched in the Olympics, it is the treasure being squandered on out of control and unnecesssary drug testing.

By: BigPapa on 3/1/10 at 7:44

The lack of positive tests justs means that they've figured out a way to beat the system through mico doses, timing of their usage, and/or using something new that WADA isn't even aware.

By: house_of_pain on 3/1/10 at 8:14

Caffeine is a wonderful performance-enhancing drug, and my boss will "use" with me. Speaking of which, I need a fix...

By: Captain Nemo on 3/1/10 at 8:14

Good morning

http://www.savagechickens.com/images/chickendrug.jpg

By: Captain Nemo on 3/1/10 at 8:17

Parents must educate their children on the dangers of recreational drug use.

http://www.appletreeblog.com/wp-content/2007/08/drug-cartoon.jpg

By: Captain Nemo on 3/1/10 at 8:27

In true GOP fashion

http://z.about.com/d/politicalhumor/1/0/4/G/3/Obama-Roots-for-USA.jpg

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 9:12

lol, Nemo! good morning, everyone.

By: MamaG on 3/1/10 at 9:15

Good morning everyone! Blanket, how you feeling this morning? Better, I hope!

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 9:25

much better, thanks!

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 9:26

Mama, i ate at Suzy Wongs this weekend. it was really good!

By: Funditto on 3/1/10 at 9:37

Can we talk about Curling?

By: MamaG on 3/1/10 at 9:38

Good deal blanket!
I don't guess we've heard from Dusty's family? Hope all is well there. If I have offended anyone in that family, I do sincerely apologize. It was not my intention to do so.

Now, NBC can get back to normal programming. I'm missing my Thur nite programs! LOL Well, all except for Parks & Recreation. That one I'm still unsure about. It has some good moments but...

By: Captain Nemo on 3/1/10 at 9:40

Glad to hear that you are doing better, Blanket.

I love Suzie Wong
http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/citylife/att/site1/20070718/xin_44070418135657019001.jpg

By: MamaG on 3/1/10 at 9:43

Blanket, do tell me more! Where is it? Seems like I've seen it before but, can't recall. On HGTV's House Hunters, the host's name is Suzanne Whang. I always call her Suzi Wang. (Just throwing that in.)

By: Captain Nemo on 3/1/10 at 9:45

By: Funditto on 3/1/10 at 9:37
Can we talk about Curling?

http://z.about.com/d/politicalhumor/1/0/a/G/3/wii-curling.jpg

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 9:49

Suzy Wong's House of Yum is on Church Street next to Tribe. The menu is Asian inspired fare and it is very reasonably priced. For appetizers we ordered the Asian nachos which were awesome and the pot stickers. Then I had the Kung Pao green beans. The drinks are also very good!

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 9:50

check out the menu!

http://www.suzywongsnashville.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=1&Itemid=3

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 9:50

Funditto, how is your son?

By: dargent7 on 3/1/10 at 10:01

One of the best "Seinfeld's" was the girlfriend's last name was "Chang", giving advice to George's mother, and they find out she's actually Caucasian.

By: MamaG on 3/1/10 at 10:08

I recently caught that one again, Darge...that was a good one. "Hi, I'm Donna Chang."

I'm wondering too, Fun, how is your son? I hope everything is going well for him and for you too.

By: MamaG on 3/1/10 at 10:09

Blanket, looks like a place I'll be trying soon! I now remember seeing it last Friday. D'uh!

By: dargent7 on 3/1/10 at 10:14

Good news! Starbucks is allowing "open carry" into their shops. In Virginia, the mental defectives can have their sidearms strapped to their legs while ordering a de-caf Frappichino with extra whip and cinnimon sprinkels. Now, no one will dare question their masculinity.

By: Captain Nemo on 3/1/10 at 10:25

Could this be what you are talking about d7?

http://www.everydaynodaysoff.com/2010/02/11/brady-center-starbucks-cartoon-in-l-a-times/

By: house_of_pain on 3/1/10 at 10:26

I tried to watch curling this weekend, but I quickly discovered that I wasn't going to get drunk enough to enjoy it.

By: Funditto on 3/1/10 at 10:29

Son is in severe pain, but it's getting better each day. He has a 6-inch stapled incision in the side of his head and two smaller ones as well. He's such a trooper - hasn't complained at all - just asks us to let him sleep away the pain.

Prognosis is good - this was a preventative surgery - like a heart bypass, only for the brain.

Thanks for asking!

A huge shout out to all the staff at Monroe Carell Children's Hospital. They are the best!

By: brrrrk on 3/1/10 at 10:35

dargent7 said

"Good news! Starbucks is allowing "open carry" into their shops. In Virginia, the mental defectives can have their sidearms strapped to their legs while ordering a de-caf Frappichino with extra whip and cinnimon sprinkels. Now, no one will dare question their masculinity."

The ratio of the caliber to the "masculinity" is an inverse one...

By: dargent7 on 3/1/10 at 10:41

brrrrk: I just hope my .357 Magnum strapped to my crushed nuts keeps those pervasive, slanderous, insensitive comments at bay when I order my drinky pooh.

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 10:45

Funditto, that is great news! He does sound like a trooper!

By: brrrrk on 3/1/10 at 10:52

Funditto, glad to hear things are going well for your son.

And speaking of kids, take a look at how well this state is doing at taking care of their own kids... in particular, check out the general wellness map. It's pitiful!

http://www.wnpt.org/productions/chc/

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 11:03

brrrrk, we don't need none of those fancy librul talkin' points now. our kids are just fine. LOL

By: MamaG on 3/1/10 at 11:09

Great news, Fun. So glad to hear it!!!

By: brrrrk on 3/1/10 at 11:11

Republican Jim Bunning of Kentucky has single handedly stopped a bill in Senate that would extend unemployment for hundreds of thousands of people (and eventually millions by May). Our own Senator Corker has called Bunning an "honorable" man for stopping the bill. I wonder if those people whose benefits are about to run out (or have), many of whom live in the state of Tennessee, would call it honorable?

By: brrrrk on 3/1/10 at 11:18

During the recent health care summit, Senator Alexander made a point of saying that coming up with a health care plan for a country this size is a difficult thing. Well Senator, that's why you were elected, to do difficult things that we as citizens can't do. And as for being difficult, I'd say that coming up with a health care system for this country is a helluva lot less difficult than having to watch someone die for lack of insurance.

By: DustyU on 3/1/10 at 11:48

Dusty's grandson here - anybody around?

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 11:50

hi

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 11:50

how's Dusty?

By: DustyU on 3/1/10 at 11:53

hi bn
he woke up friday afternoon pretty disoriented
didn't recognise anybody just wanted to know why they wouldn't let him go home
medical staff pretty dumb didn't recognise he was talking about heaven not a house
he was awake a couple hours then went back under
no change through this morning

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 11:55

it's good that he was conscious for a while?

By: DustyU on 3/1/10 at 11:57

bn yes means his heart is healing itself

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 11:58

that's good news. how are you holding up?

By: house_of_pain on 3/1/10 at 11:59

Good to hear that Dusty is improving. Thank you.

By: DustyU on 3/1/10 at 11:59

bn hanging in there miss being able to talk to him

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 12:01

we're happy that you are keeping us updated. we're all pulling for you!

By: DustyU on 3/1/10 at 12:02

bn & hp thank you
bye

By: Blanketnazi2 on 3/1/10 at 12:03

bye

By: gdiafante on 3/1/10 at 12:29

DustyU, that exact think happened to my grandmother about fifteen years ago. A diabetic w/pancreatic cancer, she was in a diabetic coma and when she started to come out of it, she kept yelling "Take me back, I want to go back". Later, when she was lucid (for the last time), she said that she was with Jesus and didn't want to be brought back.

I'd like to think that she was telling the truth and is now at peace.

By: house_of_pain on 3/1/10 at 12:42

How'd you like the game yesterday, gd? Canada may have the gold, but I'm willing to bet they also have a lot of black & blue to go with it. We gave them some pretty good checks.

By: gdiafante on 3/1/10 at 12:44

Great game, house, everything that's good about hockey was in that game. Of course, I doubt I'm going to get over it any time soon...of all the players to get the game winner, it had to be Crosby...