Hypocrisy On Steroids | NBC New York

Hypocrisy On Steroids

Baseball and Congress play do-as-I-say...

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    Astros shortstop Miguel Tejada apologizes for lying to Congress -- and getting caught -- during press conference at Minute Maid Park(Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images)

    It's wonderful to see two variably corrupt enterprises reflect each other's hypocrisy. Once again, it's baseball and Congress. A couple of days ago, we looked at the media-accelerated mania over steroids in the national pastime.

    That continues as Commissioner Bud Selig is now on record as considering suspending Alex Rodriguez for his admitted steroid use. Never mind that this usage occurred between six and eight years ago. Never mind that the test results were brought about through a deal between Major League Baseball and the players union -- on the grounds that this would be a survey case to see if systemwide process would be needed. Never mind that the agreement specifically stated that the tests would not be punitive. Never mind that there are 103 other "positive" out there and Selig would be guilty of selective prosecution.
    Selig says that, because he sent out a memo in 1997 letting players know that steroid use was illegal, he feels that he might have the right to go after Rodriguez. So, because A-Rod ignored a "memo" from the Commissioner, that same Commissioner now feels free to ignore the agreement between his office and the players association?
    Way to set an example, Bud. If there were a test for hypocrisy-on-steroids, Selig would test positive.   
    As would Congress, of course. On Wednesday, Houston Astros shortstop Miguel Tejada's entered in a guilty plea for lying to congressional investigators (which, apparently, is a crime even if the individual is not under oath). This occurred when Congress was holding its steroid hearings in 2005. Ironically, Tejada isn't even in the dock about his own suspected drug use: No, he's accused of lying about steroid use by a then-fellow player on the Oakland A's (widely reported to be outfielder Adam Piatt). So, it's arguable if Tejada was even lying to protect himself.
    Not to be dismissive about what's actually on the books, but how many small and big lies are committed by Congress -- as a body and by individual members -- on a daily basis!??! Heck, the speech or debate clause in the U.S. Constitution gives members virtually unlimited ability to say whatever they please -- even if, in other circumstances, it would be libelous. Again, lying to Congress -- a crime; lying by Congress -- a ticket to re-election.
    One mildly "positive" sign -- the new chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee says that, at this time, they aren't planning on new hearings based on the A-Rod admission.
      
    Thank goodness for little favors.
    Robert A. George is a New York writer. He blogs at Ragged Thots and dabbles in stand-up comedy.