John McCain

McCain's 'Roid Rage

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Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) indulges Washington's favorite pastime: Threatening businesses with punishing legislation. Said McNasty to Major League Baseball big wigs:

"Your failure to commit to addressing this issue straight on and immediately will motivate this committee to search for legislative remedies," McCain, chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, told players' union chief Donald Fehr.

"I don't know what they [the remedies] are. But I can tell you, and the players you represent, the status quo is not acceptable. And we will have to act in some way unless the major league players union acts in the affirmative and rapid fashion," the senator said.

What kind of drug testing gets done in the world's drunkest–er, greatest–deliberative body, I wonder?

Previous thoughts on steroids and baseball here.

Previous thoughts on McCain here and here.

[ESPN.com link thanks to reader Ari Spanier]

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  1. Unfortunately the war on drugs crowd seems to have no interest in politicians drunk with power.

  2. I accept the idea that some businesses must be regulated for the public good, but exactly what danger is the public being protected from here?

    I agree with Jim.

  3. Jenifer,

    God told McCain to regulate baseball; otherwise America – God’s nation – will collapse under a hail of fire and brimstone, and you will the landscape strewn with sodium statues. 🙂

  4. Jennifer,
    Perhaps one day you will accept that the public can regulate business for its own good.

  5. hey warren, read more carefully.

  6. Remember the three reasons to hold a Congressional hearing:

    1. To get on TV

    2. To get on TV

    3. To get on TV

    What do you bet will be the leed story this evening?

  7. As a resident of Arizona, I am so sick of John McCain. Heck, I’d be sick of him even if I wasn’t, but I have to hear about him more often. There are a helluva lot more important things for the government to be concerned about than whether or not players in professional sports leagues are “cheating” by using steroids. Even if you think that using steroids is cheating (which I do not), why should the government get involved.

    Give me a break.

  8. Congress reserves the right to pester MLB from time to time in exchange for its anti-trust exemption. It’s tradition.

    I say get rid of the exemption, I want to see world-wide baseball leagues.

    Go M’s!

  9. If people were reptiles, McCain would be a turtle. Look at his head!

    Honorable mention: David Broder. Yup, another turtle!

  10. Do cops have mandatory ‘roids tests?

    Have you looked at some of your local finest lately?

  11. It’s the donuts, Isaac.
    Sweet, gooey, steroid-laced donuts.

  12. Baseball doesn’t deserve the anti-trust special status it holds.
    Get rid of the privilege with or without drug testing.

  13. Look on the bright side…if McCain is busy bullying MLB at least he’s distracted from working on McCain-Feingold II.

    As another Arizonan, I’d love to get rid of the smiling fascist…but keeping him busy with relatively frivolous stuff may be the best we can hope for right now.

  14. “What kind of drug testing gets done in the world’s drunkest–er, greatest–deliberative body, I wonder?”

    Competition is not the point of Congress. It is the point of baseball. Steroids ruin competition.

  15. Many have to submit to humiliating guilty-until-proven-innocent drug tests for the even the most trivial jobs and school activities.

    By that logic, it seems like the legislators of the free world should at least do the same.

    Nothing to hide/fear right?

  16. Oh, McCain might be threatening that,dj, I don’t know what he said. I’m just saying repealing the exemption doesn’t actually accomplish anything.

  17. Skip, you don’t think preventing any competition from emerging counts as an “actual benefit” that the owners get from the antitrust exemption? Funny how labor monopoly deserves a trial a the Hague, but an employer monopoly doesn’t even warrant a mention.

  18. So… it was McCain that put the roids note in the President’s Speech? If it wasn’t, then you can’t fault him for being a loyal Republican. Aside from that, and his enthusiasm for sports, he’s definately not the only one on the panel who wants a turn at playing team manager.

  19. Other things that ruin competition in baseball: a strike zone the size of a copy of Reader’s Digest; the new smaller ballparks with their closer, homer-friendly fences; watered-down pitching as a consequence of league over-expansion.

    It was amusing to have the NFL held up as a paragon of drug testing in pro sports. I’d be really surprised to find that none of those 350-pound linemen was juicing up — and slipping by the NFL’s much stricter standards.

  20. Baseball’s antitrust exemption has nothing to do with drug testing or the lack thereof. If you want to target special priviliges, target the players union–like all labor unions, they enjoy a government-created monopoly over labor supply and conditions. Because of this, an individual player can’t voluntarily subject himself to testing–even to clear his name–because federal law commits that subject to monopoly collective bargaining.

    The baseball owners’ exemption, by contrast, is largely harmless. The only actual benefit it gives them is the ability to maintain a minor league system under what’s left of the reserve clause.

  21. If not the anti-trust exemption, then what
    is McCain threatening baseball with?

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