Parrot23 said:BigBoat's earlier point about narcissicistic personality disorder (see the Wikipedia entry on this) seems relevant. If you watch the Giro videos of the One, narcissim was the word that came to mind. Reality shows and Twitter etc. today are promoting a sort of general unbridled exhibitionist narcissim among lots of people.
Then again, most people act out of mixed motives, some base, some pure, including philanthropy (which could be a mix of both). Look at Bill Gates: great at philanthropy, but it came after bruising court battles where his image was battered. He's a human being, like everybody else.
That was me saying Armstrong has a NPD. I am pretty sure it is true...or very nearly true.
Gates follows a long line of robber barons who broke the law and harmed society to get uber wealthy, but then bought their way to respectability using philanthropy. It is disgusting that this sort of thing works with the sheople in America.