The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Bonds: the count is 3 and 1, will he walk?

Barry Bonds was convicted of obstruction of justice but the jury deadlocked on the other three counts involving perjury before a grand jury. This seems strange to me since the other charges cover, in my view, the method of obstruction... the actual lying. So, if the jury wasn't convinced he actually lied to the grand jury, how could he have obstructed justice?

Here are the three charges on which the jury deadlocked and, according to the San Francisco Chronicle, how they voted...

"That Bonds lied by denying that his trainer, Greg Anderson, or anyone other than a doctor had ever injected him with drugs - the vote was 11-1 to convict, jurors said.

But on the charges that were the core of the case - Bonds' denials of having knowingly taken steroids or human-growth hormone - jurors said majorities favored acquittal: 9-3 for the first charge, 8-4 for the second.

So, I am a little confused about how the jury came to the one guilty verdict. It seems to me that you would have to be convinced he lied before you could be convinced he obstructed justice. But I did not sit on the jury. I did not hear the case, I did not see the witnesses, I do not have all the evidence before me. And I am not going to purchase the trial transcripts to find out.

The jurors said they didn't trust one of the key witnesses, a former mistress of Bonds named Kimberly Bell. But the other key witness was Bonds' sister and former personal shopper and here is where things went against him.

"It was a different story with prosecution witness Kathy Hoskins, Steve Hoskins' sister and Bonds' former personal shopper, who said she saw Bonds getting an injection from Anderson. That was the basis of the false-statement charge that produced the 11-1 deadlock, and jurors said the testimony also led to the conviction for obstruction of justice." (Steve Hoskins was the trainer)

Read more

So, yeah, you would tend to believe a sister testifying against her brother. Just as my mother would believe my siblings when they tattled on me. No brothers or sisters ever would lie about a sibling, would they? Or wouldn't they?

I would think the key to the case is whether he denied getting any injections from the trainer and knew what those injections contained. If he told the GJ he got injections but thought they were legal substances, such as pain-killers or cortisone then he did not knowingly take the banned steroids.

It all falls under intent and awareness, I suppose. And that is hard to prove. The thing is, I don't much care about this. I agree that steroids are bad, that they should be banned from sports, and that those who take them, knowingly or unknowingly, should have accomplishments be kept out of the record books (which would definitely hurt their chances of getting into the various Halls of Fame). But I also think this is "bread and circuses" to keep the masses occupied.

We are so easily distracted.


Steven Scott said...

I couldn't even be arsed to read this blog post, I care so little about the topic. Until I got to the last paragraphs. Didn't they get this guy up in front of Congress? Bread and circuses, indeed.

T.C. said...

What a pathetic ending to what started out as a hall of fame career. He never retired either. Just exited with a whimper despite holding the most cherished of all records.

Douglas4517 said...

I suppose the pressure to perform induces some dumb decisions.