Exploitation

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May 18, 2009
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Dear Wiggo said:
The environment of politics and business, IME and IMO is no different to the cycling environment. It comes back to human nature, and if you can cheat and break rules, and get away with it, people will.

Exploitation happens in all 3, often surprisingly to the naive. Wallmart employees having to strike for minimum wage, UK politicians shredding all the expense account documents pre-2010, effectively closing the corruption investigation.

No difference at a metaphorical level.

I don't want to argue, so I'll leave it there.

At least the guys can empathise with the women, who are not even offered the under the table opportunity.
Why should we leave it at that, when your views appear to be so twisted? :cool:

So, if somebody chooses to pursue a degree in business, or be a doctor, or save up money and open a business, or work at Wal Mart, or be an accountant or engineer for Exxon, the same likelihood of corruption and rule breaking exists in those endeavors that exist in professional cycling? And, that likelihood is common knowledge?
 
Sep 29, 2012
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ChrisE said:
So, if somebody chooses to pursue a degree in business, or be a doctor, or save up money and open a business, or work at Wal Mart, or be an accountant or engineer for Exxon, the same likelihood of corruption and rule breaking exists in those endeavors that exist in professional cycling? And, that likelihood is common knowledge?
You don't think politics is corrupt? You don't think big business is rorting the planet in pursuit of the mighty dollar?

We really should leave it there.
 
Nov 14, 2013
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Also in my experience kids fall in love with the dream of racing their bikes rather than riding their bike "for a living". Its a bit different than becoming an accountant or wot not.
 
May 18, 2009
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Dear Wiggo said:
You don't think politics is corrupt? You don't think big business is rorting the planet in pursuit of the mighty dollar?

We really should leave it there.
So, the choice is between bike racing and politics? I seem to remember more career choices than that....I luckily fell into one of those other choices else I would have been forced to ride a bike and dope for some pittance. Luck of the draw, I guess. :rolleyes:

No, I do not think big business is as corrupt as professional bicycle racing. You are putting up a strawman about capitalism 'rorting the planet', somehow trying to equate that to a choice somebody makes to become a professional bike racer.
 
Sep 29, 2012
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ChrisE said:
So, the choice is between bike racing and politics? I seem to remember more career choices than that....I luckily fell into one of those other choices else I would have been forced to ride a bike and dope for some pittance. Luck of the draw, I guess. :rolleyes:

No, I do not think big business is as corrupt as professional bicycle racing. You are putting up a strawman about capitalism 'rorting the planet', somehow trying to equate that to a choice somebody makes to become a professional bike racer.
No I am not.

I am equating going pro (chasing the dream) to starting your own business. You're selling a product (IMO) vs working for the man 9-5. I see it as a different style of vocation on a number of levels.

I don't see pro cycling as a 9-5 job as you seem to do. Or at least the alternative to pro cycling to my mind is more in line with starting your own business. Or doing something like photography for a living.

A guy started a cafe called "Roubaix". Specialized sued him. That's the sort of thing I am talking about where I see similarities of corruption in big business. I provided more above re: Walmart and the UK government.

Curious exchange - your (misunderstanding) confidence about what I am saying and also the rather hard nosed responses and almost dismissive attitude. And the absolutes (cycling or politics), all the while ignoring the dream these kids (and many, many other entrepreneurs are chasing, often similarly working for a pittance but loving what they are doing, naively expecting the best).

Not a biggie. But it does make the ongoing interaction feel somewhat antagonistic.
 
Go for it

DW. GO for it. You will never regret it.

Even if it doesn't work out you should be able to hold your head up high and say you gave it your best shot. Be not just a man but be yourself and hang on to your morals.
You will learn many life lessons that will serve you well for the rest of your life. They won't fail you.
Best wishes to you.
 
May 18, 2009
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Dear Wiggo said:
No I am not.

I am equating going pro (chasing the dream) to starting your own business. You're selling a product (IMO) vs working for the man 9-5. I see it as a different style of vocation on a number of levels.

I don't see pro cycling as a 9-5 job as you seem to do. Or at least the alternative to pro cycling to my mind is more in line with starting your own business. Or doing something like photography for a living.

A guy started a cafe called "Roubaix". Specialized sued him. That's the sort of thing I am talking about where I see similarities of corruption in big business. I provided more above re: Walmart and the UK government.

Curious exchange - your (misunderstanding) confidence about what I am saying and also the rather hard nosed responses and almost dismissive attitude. And the absolutes (cycling or politics), all the while ignoring the dream these kids (and many, many other entrepreneurs are chasing, often similarly working for a pittance but loving what they are doing, naively expecting the best).

Not a biggie. But it does make the ongoing interaction feel somewhat antagonistic.
The subject of the thread is how cyclists are forced to dope due to low wages. I counter with the fact that it is well known what is required to ride as a professional rider, and that there are other choices in life.

From that you start talking about evils of capitalism, trademark infringement, political corruption, etc. as if that has anything to do with the subject. IMO it doesn't.
 
Sep 29, 2012
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ChrisE said:
The subject of the thread is how cyclists are forced to dope due to low wages. I counter with the fact that it is well known what is required to ride as a professional rider, and that there are other choices in life.

From that you start talking about evils of capitalism, trademark infringement, political corruption, etc. as if that has anything to do with the subject. IMO it doesn't.
Uh no. It's not about riders being forced to dope. What an interesting take on the thread - it's about riders being exploited.

Nothing to do with doping whatsoever.

Consistent you are, ChrisE.

This type of exploitation is prevalent throughout politics and business. So IMO it is relevant.
 
Aug 10, 2010
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Dear Wiggo said:
Uh no. It's not about riders being forced to dope. What an interesting take on the thread - it's about riders being exploited.

Nothing to do with doping whatsoever.

Consistent you are, ChrisE.

This type of exploitation is prevalent throughout politics and business. So IMO it is relevant.
Everybody does it, so it is okay?
 
May 18, 2009
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Dear Wiggo said:
Uh no. It's not about riders being forced to dope. What an interesting take on the thread - it's about riders being exploited.

Nothing to do with doping whatsoever.

Consistent you are, ChrisE.

This type of exploitation is prevalent throughout politics and business. So IMO it is relevant.
Mark posted a link about the minimum wage being circumvented. In his post he stated they are forced to dope due to this poor wage. My conclusion to his statement was that to escape being subject to having to deal with this they dope, which helps lift them out of the issue into a higher pay scale due to better results.

Apparently you interpret Mark's intent differently. Maybe he will respond and clarify.
 
May 18, 2009
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DirtyWorks said:
Wonderboy's entire career was one reality denying event after another for what, 20 years? What's this reality they must face?
He knew it going in what was required and made that choice. That is the reality. If somebody doesn't want to do that they can choose to do something else, or work to change the sport.
 
Mar 13, 2009
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Dear Wiggo said:
No I am not.

I am equating going pro (chasing the dream) to starting your own business. You're selling a product (IMO) vs working for the man 9-5. I see it as a different style of vocation on a number of levels.

I don't see pro cycling as a 9-5 job as you seem to do. Or at least the alternative to pro cycling to my mind is more in line with starting your own business. Or doing something like photography for a living.

A guy started a cafe called "Roubaix". Specialized sued him. That's the sort of thing I am talking about where I see similarities of corruption in big business. I provided more above re: Walmart and the UK government.

Curious exchange - your (misunderstanding) confidence about what I am saying and also the rather hard nosed responses and almost dismissive attitude. And the absolutes (cycling or politics), all the while ignoring the dream these kids (and many, many other entrepreneurs are chasing, often similarly working for a pittance but loving what they are doing, naively expecting the best).

Not a biggie. But it does make the ongoing interaction feel somewhat antagonistic.
but who determines if one's solipsism and dream is authentic and legal and therefore deference should be acceded. (thats sort of a pleonasm, but you get the point).

a dream based on false foundations, should I as outsider, necessarily pay fealty to this? This would be obscene. So, in one sense, what ChrisE is saying, has validity, no one is entitled to the fruition of dreams and aspirations. invoke <Hobbes leviathan quote>

Its not either-or. Its not your position, but E is merely offering a devil's advocate. If cycling never existed sans biochemistry and doping, why does one now have an obligation to shift a playing field on behalf of one's aspirations. And as E implies, cycling is but cypher for life, like the Hobbes quote, and we in the West live such an indulgent pursuit of life compared to everyone who has come before us and lives on the alternate tiger/3rd world/subsistent nation states. We are still blessed, even when our dreams to be pro cyclists with April Macy as a third hand.

I think reading your post ^, your concerns and resent, is where the goalposts shift. Where you get sold the bill of goods.

But after assessing cycling for all the dark side characteristics, could one really claim they have been suckered?

P'raps Specialized do have a trademark on Roubaix. Do they have one on "cobbles". Or, Belgian Bluestone Beergarden, or Belgian Beergarden, or "cobblestones". The name of ones business should not necessarily be the key plank of the success and profitablity of the business. Otherwise, all you have is a business model based on ISP copyright and titular trademark. And you might be better advised to adopt a business based on ISP and trademark squatting. Afterall, Australia has a rich history in squattocracy and wealth so claimed in this manner.
 
Mar 13, 2009
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ChrisE said:
He knew it going in what was required and made that choice. That is the reality. If somebody doesn't want to do that they can choose to do something else, or work to change the sport.
I gotta agree with E!

with one caveat, p'raps he was looking for the edge as a jnr triathlete.

But LA aint that evil. I hate the qualifier "evil". It is succour mom's idiom
 
Aug 10, 2010
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Dear Wiggo said:
Said noone ever.
I'm having trouble understanding why you are bringing up wage theft in the world outside cycling. What argument are you trying to develop with it?
 
Aug 10, 2010
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DirtyWorks said:
Wonderboy's entire career was one reality denying event after another for what, 20 years? What's this reality they must face?
Armstrong was a star, and stars get paid. Sporting leagues go to great lengths to promote stars. Screw the peons.
 
Nov 8, 2012
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Dear Wiggo said:
Or your life is quite staid and you never chased a dream.

Sounds a bit dull.
I chased a dream. I was paid zero salary, was "given" bikes/parts and some expense money. I had passion, no plan "B" and I worked my *** off for nearly 10 years attempting to "make it" in my chosen profession. There were some great results and some not-so-great.

I understood exactly what was happening and nobody held a gun to my head to continue - it was entirely my decision to carry on and when the time came, it was my decision to stop.

I was never exploited just as the scrubs in cycling aren't. Free will and all that.
 
Mar 13, 2009
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MarkvW said:
Armstrong was a star, and stars get paid. Sporting leagues go to great lengths to promote stars. Screw the peons.
word.


________________________
 
Aug 10, 2010
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Scott SoCal said:
I chased a dream. I was paid zero salary, was "given" bikes/parts and some expense money. I had passion, no plan "B" and I worked my *** off for nearly 10 years attempting to "make it" in my chosen profession. There were some great results and some not-so-great.

I understood exactly what was happening and nobody held a gun to my head to continue - it was entirely my decision to carry on and when the time came, it was my decision to stop.

I was never exploited just as the scrubs in cycling aren't. Free will and all that.
Pro cyclists badly need a union. I'm sure the UCI establishment fully agrees with you on this issue.

You can't expect any progress on the doping front when the UCI either cannot or will not enforce it own minimum wage rules. The organization is thoroughly corrupt.
 
Jul 11, 2013
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MarkvW said:
Pro cyclists badly need a union.
snipped..
Very much agree..
A Union, that would also aid and protect the riders who has something to tell..

Makes me think of Matt Decanio btw:

After the worlds in Italy where I placed 22nd place, I was asked to race for a U-23 team in Italy
as I was considered the top racer of my generation by the Italians.
This new team was a dream come true, racing in Florence, Italy
and getting to see the world and to do my passion which was racing bicycles. I could not have been happier. But soon after arriving I realized that something was incredibly wrong with the events that were taking place.
The first night I was there the riders were throwing needles at each other.
All of my teammates were injecting themselves with various products and vitamins.
I was scared, immature and I did not know what to do. None of
my training at the United States Olympic Training Center had properly prepared me for the pressures I was now facing in Italy to inject myself. There was not a number to call or a single person to speak to about this.
Later I would find out why this was the case. After the first season I
would witness and speak to my teammates openly about doping. They all admitted to me other than 1 or 2 riders that they were using EPO and/or HGH. My managers all asked me to use theseproducts and I refused which upset them and caused them to treat me less fairly than my other teammates. I was given a steel bicycle to race instead of an aluminum for example. I was not paid, and the other riders were paid. I was shunned by my teammates at dinner for my lacklustre performance while they were doping and winning. They would call me a loser. This all added up
to a mental mind game that would forever affect me
(No link -PDF)

I hope this kind of bullying no longer takes place..
Wouldn't hold my breath though..
 
MarkvW said:
Armstrong was a star, and stars get paid. Sporting leagues go to great lengths to promote stars. Screw the peons.
The idea an athlete should "just get used to it" is terrible. It puts the rider at the mercy of literally everyone else in the sport and you get what we have now.

Find a way to use your race performances in other ways to make money. For example, "How can I get paid doing this thing because my Pro Team isn't paying me?" Is a valid response. Or, "hey this is as far as I go on my resources because the only thing I want to do is ride my bike. It's time to move on."

IMO, the way cycling is structured, there's no other choice BUT to have related not-racing services. In this sense, JPow's video blog thing is a fair example. Advertisers get a benefit and 'cross fans watch it. How about coaching? How about coaching weekends at some resort?

IMO, a Union wouldn't work. There are already too many riders ready to pay to race. The UCI would not like losing control of some aspect of the sport. BTW, there already is a rider's union anyway.
 
Mar 27, 2014
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A better analogy might be Formula 1 and car racing
Basically the drivers don't get paid
As a driver you need to get sponsorship from a very young age and those sponsors bring money to whatever team you join.
Why have some of the best drivers in formula one never made it- because they didnt have the level of sponsorship to get them onto a top team, why is max verstappen at 17 about to be a F1 driver - because he can bring the $$$$
Top drivers will have personal sponsors worth up to 10 million dollars which will go to the team they are on - hence the 3 to 4 million the driver gets each year is simply a proportion of the sponsorship money he brings each year.
Cycling is simply the same based upon the amount of money you are willing to spend to get yourself juiced up to get the results.
Don't want to play the game you don't get a slice of the pie simple as that.

Equally you dont want to pay extreme school fees and go to the best school and get a top degree dont expect to get a job at goldman sachs,

Dont want to work 20 hours a day for 5 years dont expect to get to the top of the legal profession

Dont want to work 70 hours a week getting abused and spat on and assaulted dont expect to get past being a junior doctor and making it in the medical profession

Leave behind everything you know and all stability and go it on your own

They all have there sacrifices to make and we all make our choices as to what we want to do

Make the sacrifice with the chance of making it big
or make the choice to live a comfortable safe life.
 
Sep 29, 2012
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ChrisE said:
Mark posted a link about the minimum wage being circumvented. In his post he stated they are forced to dope due to this poor wage. My conclusion to his statement was that to escape being subject to having to deal with this they dope, which helps lift them out of the issue into a higher pay scale due to better results.

Apparently you interpret Mark's intent differently. Maybe he will respond and clarify.
I took the link and the thread title as the thrust of the thread. What Mark thinks the link means was irrelevant to my ongoing discussion.

You did apply a generalised, "you" to imply everyone agrees with Mark.

I agree exploitation goes on and is bad (the link and thread title). I disagree riders are pressured to dope of their own accord (Mark's take on the matter?). If he meant the teams pressure the riders to dope, that's different and speculation and I can't comment. I do think the low wage and the risk already taken to take up the role increases the likelihood for making poor decisions in regards to doping.

I firmly believe in personal responsibility for your actions.
 

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