Keith Olbermann has this great take on Thursday's congressional steroid circus, focusing mostly on McGwire of course.If it hadn't been so tragic, so much like watching as cops fail to talk the guy out of jumping, McGwire's testimony would've been reminiscent of the old "Saturday Night Live" sketch about the Three Mile Island Nuclear accident. After President Jimmy Carter is exposed to a massive radiation dose, plant `spokesman' Richard Benjamin is asked "is it true that the president is 100 feet tall?" and replies with a mixture of mirth and disdain: "No! Absolutely not!" A second reporter then asks: "Is the president 90 feet tall?" and Benjamin replies "No comment."
More after the jump.
Olbermann perceptively points out that McGwire's testimony is not only the obvious slam on his Bash Brother, but that McGwire was calling Sosa, Palmeiro, Schilling, and Thomas liars as well:"If a player answers, `No,' he simply will not be believed," McGwire said, doubtless to the surprise of Sosa and Palmeiro, who had just said no, and Curt Schilling and Frank Thomas, who immediately thereafter would. "If he answers, `Yes,' he risks public scorn and endless government investigations," which must've made the absent Jason Giambi feel like pretty much of a sap, and, oddly, which must also have made Jose Canseco feel surprisingly validated.
And Olbermann closes out by subtly hinting there might be a very, very good reason why McGwire alone wouldn't answer the did-you-or-didn't-you question:There would be a lot of public scorn if you confessed. And the sea of history would close up over you and the year you had, and they might not vote you into the Hall of Fame, and your name would become synonymous with deception.
So, of the two remaining options, obviously the preferred one would be to refuse to say anything. That way, the sea of doubt would close up over you and the year you had, and they might not vote you into the Hall of Fame, and your name would become synonymous with evasion.
Apparently that stonewall choice was much better than saying "hell no, I didn't use them." Obviously, that's because...
Well, you know what? Sorry, I thought I had something to write here to explain why McGwire denying steroid use was somehow different and more dangerous than Sosa or Palmeiro or Thomas or Schilling doing so.
But that something seems suddenly to have escaped me.