In his column today, Boston Globe scribe Bob Ryan wants to know what the point of the steroid investigation is. Yes, he takes the obligatory shots at the inquiry’s toothlessness. But what he really wants to know is, “What’s our motivation in this scene?”

I have felt, lo this last year or so, that Ryan dislikes the fans. His fellow Globie, Dan Shaugnessy, seems to dislike the players.  Between the two of them, much of Boston’s notorious negativity is generated. Behold:

Let’s say George Mitchell finds out what we all want to know.

What then?

I mean, what exactly is the end game here? If Major League Baseball finds itself with a list of X players who have been proven — I said proven — to have used performance-enhancing substances at some time during the past, say, 15 years, what happens then?

Line them up and shoot them?

“I’m just asking,” Ryan repeats time after time, as he wanders from one topic to the next using the old trucs of the columnist trade, the “anyways” and the “how did I get on this topic?” I’m not fooled, Bob. I’ve thrown in a “but I digress” or two myself from time to time.

But what I really want to know is (see, I just did it!), WHY IS THIS MAN A JOURNALIST. Seriously. (No offense, “I’m just asking.”) What is the point of finding the truth? Because it is The Truth. It’s an end in itself. A journalist’s job description consists almost entirely of truth-seeking.

And if you don’t see “the point” of that, my white-haired friend, well, I know a lot of hungry young writers who’d love the chance to fill your column inches.


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