The AFL Player Spectator Current AFL Threat Level

Millionaires with a Year Ten Education
<     >

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Speccy Shop: Surviving The Footy Season

Here at The Speccy, we take great pride in providing factual, balanceding and potentially life-saving information to the wider community. Through our regular bulletins and world-first AFL Threat Level Indicator, we're at the forefront of football public safety. But with AFL Season 2006 creeping up on us like a lecherous boss at an office Christmas party, we believe the time has come to empower our readers.

Starting from today, you can couple the first-class analysis and key insights from The AFL Player Spectator with high-quality tools to help you protect you and your loved ones in this time of peril. We've carefully selected a range of essential equipment and knowledge to ensure you can enjoy a night out without the constant worry of attack by a pack of drug-addled predatory footy players with something to prove.

Please Note ...

These items are offered for sale by our retail partner, Please check whether it is legal to import, purchase and possess these items in your local jurisdiction. The Speccy will receive a modest commission of around 5% on sales. If you'd like to contribute directly, please use the donation button found on the sidebar on the right. This catalogue is subject to change without notice and all product enquiries and transactions are to be directed to If you have further suggestions for the Speccy Shop, please send 'em in. We'd be happy to help out.

Stun Gun
<    >

Let's not mince words. Sometimes, an upfront and direct approach is required to deal with burly and aggressive footy players. We've searched the market for something that we believe will stop an AFL player in his tracks. From the product description:

Simply touching an attacker with a stun gun for three to five seconds will deliver a high voltage shock causing loss of balance and muscle control, confusion and disorientation, bringing him to his knees and making him incapable of further aggressive activity.

Yep, as a last resort, this should dissuade even the most diehard footballer from further attacks. NB: Check if this product is legal for you to have before ordering!

Pepper Spray
<    >

Stun guns are great, but you may want to disable your assailant before he gets close enough to zap. In this case, you might want to consider pepper spray. On reading the description for this product, it seemed it was almost designed with AFL players in mind:

Because it is an inflammatory, rather than an irritant, OC is effective against all those who feel no pain such as psychotics, drunks and drug abusers. OC has proven itself to be the ABSOLUTE BEST DETERRENT available for attacking dogs and wild animal control.

This will "deter" AFL players alright! (Again, please check legality first to avoid disappointment.)

First-Aid Kit
<    >

Despite the best planning and self-defence measures, sometimes things will go wrong. In which case, you and your friends will need to be ready for a quick patch-up while the ambulance arrives. This first-aid kit includes all the life-sustaining equipment you'll need for a big night out in Footy Town.

The cutting-edge urban bag design and "safety-first" bright orange means it will not be out of place at the rave parties and underground clubs where so many players stalk their prey. You may also wish to undertake a first-aid course and encourage your drinking buddies to do the same. You never know, the life you end up saving could be you own.

<    >

A simple breathalyser can play an important part of protecting yourself against AFL attack. A recent case in Western Australia involving Ben Cousins shows that footballers will - quite literally - run a mile when confronted with the prospect of being breathalysed.

A secondary use is to monitor the blood-alcohol levels of your friends and family when in public, as footballers can sniff out a heavily-intoxicated female - even from adjacent pubs. Note that this particular model will only measure BAC up to 0.12% - and hence is entirely useless for testing AFL players themselves.

Drug Test Kit
<    >

Consider this list:
Marijuana, cocaine, ecstasy, PCP, amphetamines, opiates and methamphetamines

No, that's not the shopping list for an AFL end of season trip. That's the range of drugs detected by this urinalysis kit. At first blush, it seems the chances of getting a footy player to wee into a cup is vanishingly small. Hell, it took months of negotiations and hundreds of thousands of dollars of taxpayer money to get them to agree to any testing all! (Not to mention all the strife the results have caused.) But here's the trick: if you're one of the many women who has been urinated on by a footballer in a pub, you can ring out your clothes into a cup for immediate testing - and legal action. Not to mention media sales. Cha-ching! This only needs to happen once and those bastards will stop pissing on pub-goers quicker than you can say "Today Tonight".

Body Armour
<    >

This slim and attractive undergarment will protect you from a range of body blows delivered by footballers. Comfortable, durable and replete with foam padding and Lycra(TM), it is designed for demanding encounters with Rugby players. Which means that the comparatively small and girlie-armed AFL footballers have no chance of getting through this bad boy. Further, the appearance of your beefed-up physique will frighten away all but the most drunken of footballers. You may wish to consider complementing this item with other padding and personal protection wear, given that your lower limbs, head and genitals are now dangerously exposed.

Rape Prevention Book
<    >

Sadly, despite all efforts to the contrary, footballers will continue to rape. In an ideal world, women should not have to bear the burden of stopping these awful attacks. But, due to widespread misogynistic attitudes, women are forced to step up and take control for their own safety. They say that being forewarned is being forearmed. And speaking of being forearmed, that's just one of the techniques you'll learn in this thoughtful guide to rape prevention.
This program demonstrates specific techniques that women of all ages can use to protect themselves from a rapist and to stop a rape if in progress. The techniques have been proven to work.

Drink Spike Testers
<    >

We've seen how some AFL players think it's amusing to spike women's drinks - even the wives of their supposed mates! It's distressing to think that footballers are passing around so-called date rape drugs like Rohypnol in order to rape incapacitated women. Common sense suggests you should never accept a drink from a footballer, or leave it unattended. However, for those occasions when it's impossible to avoid, you should consider these Drink Spike Detectors.
A personal test strip designed to detect the possible presence of illicit "Date Rape" drugs in alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.

These little strips could save you or a friend from ending up playing a starring role in the bizarre sexual initiation rites of an AFL team.

Night Vision Scope
<    >

It's no secret that most AFL attacks occur after dark. While our city officials do what they can do install safe lighting in our urban areas, there are still plenty of dark alleys, parks and other nooks. With this handy and easy-to-use Night Vision Scope, you'll be able to see them coming:
Its hand-cradle gives you easy, comfortable yet secure one-handed operational use. This monocular is extremely versatile and incorporates a powerful built-in infrared illuminator and a tripod mount into a lightweight and compact body.

STD Self-Diagnosis
<    >

If you have any sexual contact with a footballer - either consensual or forced - you should consider using this book. It's probably worth a look even if you just availed yourself of a toilet in a pub or club frequented by footballers.

From the author's world renown collection of clinical photographs comes this unprecedented collage of full color views of common and uncommon sexually transmitted diseases. An invaluable tool for differential diagnosis of STDs, the atlas features one to two color photograph for each disorder and accompanies those with the salient points of epidemiology, clinical signs, physical exam, diagnosis and management.

Just the ticket for that mysterious post-encounter rash or sticky discharge. Please note: you should always seek medical and legal advice after a sexual encounter with an AFL player.

DNA Testing Kit
<    >

Unfortunately, you can't rely on AFL players to be wearing their numbered guernseys when they bash or rape. Identifying them after the attack can be difficult, especially if it's dark, there's more than one, and alcohol is involved (as is often the case). That's where DNA profiling can be an absolute godsend. The AFL Players' union hates the idea of their members being DNA profiled ... with technology like this, we can understand why! We recommend using this kit to immediately collect any semen, blood or hair the attackers have left behind.

This kit offers a safe, easy-to-use and detailed way to take and store your own DNA sample. Each pack includes a DNA storage kit, DNA profile request pack and detailed instructions. seal it up in the airtight self-sealing pouch to stabilize your DNA and prevent other agents from destroying or corrupting it. Want more detailed information? Take a second swab and send it in for analysis. Your unique DNA code and image will be sent to you within 45 days. Analysis of second swab requires an additional fee.

Again, you should contact police immediately before, during or after an assault has taken police. They have experts who can collect this kind of evidence far better than amateurs. But sadly, we cannot always trust the police to investigate such matters properly and rape evidence has been known to mysteriously disappear while in police hands. Think of this as a backup measure in case of police failure.

We'll be adding to the catalogue as items become available and are drawn to our attention. Thank you for shopping with The Speccy!

Word Count: 1918

Labels: , , , , , ,


<     >

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Footy Drug Tests Reveal Major Problem

News of 15 positives from the AFL's new drug testing regime has shocked many observers - shocked that the figure is so ridiculously low. This suggests that something is seriously awry with the testing methods. Incompetence ... or something more sinister?

Under the AFL's humiliating backdown last year, they agreed to implement the World Anti-Doping Agency's protocol for testing of drugs - including recreational drugs during the off-season through the Australian Sports Drug Agency. Naturally, there was a lot of push-back from the AFL Players' union over this one. But, in the end, they were offered a pile of free money from the taxpayers and despite their mindboggling riches, they couldn't so no to that. (Hey, free money is still free money, no matter how many millions you've got, right?)

The first results are starting to trickle in. The AFL is reporting that:

At least 15 AFL players have recorded positive tests for recreational drugs after less than a year of the league's new testing regime.

One player has been confirmed to have returned two positive readings under the tests, which cover drugs including cocaine, ecstasy, amphetamines and marijuana.


"It was pretty full on, so I suppose it was a bit of a reality check. I think everyone was pretty surprised to hear the 15 figure," said one player, who asked not to be named. The figure is believed to not have been a full-year result and consequently the number of positive tests could be higher. But players were advised that about 15 positive results had been returned in 2005.

Concerned at anecdotal reports of the incidence of illicit drug use, the AFL last year changed its regime to introduce a more targeted approach to testing for recreational drugs. It is understood about 400 tests were carried out by the ASDA last year. Part of the intention of the illicit drug talk this year was evidently to shock players into understanding both the extent of drug use and the health and welfare dangers.

"Under the AFL's illicit drugs policy we are testing more, we are testing at more high-risk times such as at recovery sessions, and with that we will catch more people if they are doing drugs," [AFL football operations manager Adrian] Anderson said. (The Age, 10/3/2006)

So, we're being asked to believe that they got around 15 positives from testing 400 footy players for party drugs over a whole year? That is a hit rate of 4%. As AFL Player union kingpin Peter Bell put it:

"I wouldn't say I was surprised, I'd say that I was disappointed," Bell said.

"I'm disappointed if we have one person test positive for illicit drugs, but I suppose that's pretty naïve considering recent research shows that 30 per cent of 20 to 29-year olds in the general community would have used illicit drugs in the last year.

"Results gleaned from several years of testing AFL players indicate that illicit drug
use amongst AFL players is significantly less than use amongst the broader society
on a range of measures," AFLPA chief executive Brendon Gale said in a statement released later in the day. (The AFL, 10/3/2006)

In other words, AFL players take drugs at a rate of one tenth of the rest of the population. This is such a ridiculous conclusion that we can safely dismiss any notion that the testing regime is working. After all, well-known drug-taker Laurence "Moses" Angwin reported very widespread abuse of ecstasy, pointing out that "it wasn't just Carlton where this was happening, it was just commonplace, especially amongst the younger blokes". He suggested that of those indulging, most were taking it fortnightly.

The real story here is: why are so many AFL players managing to spoof the tests? Certainly, there is no shortage of commercial companies offering all manners of pills, lotions and techniques to ensure you pass your drug tests. Are AFL players strapping prosthetic penises to their groins and squeezing out baby piss? Or is there a manual or how-to for getting around these drug tests being passed from player to player?

We need to consider whether the explanation is actually decidedly darker ... Clearly, the clubs don't want to find any of their million-dollar investments sidelined from a positive test. Hell, players only need three positives (three!) before this happens. When untangling a conspiracy, the best advice is "follow the money". Who stands to lose the most from a positive result?

With the Commonwealth Games only days away, I hope our drug officials note these laughable figures and ask themselves - just how effective are these testing protocols when less than 4% of Aussie Rules players come back positive?

*** UPDATE ***

The outcome of the court case lifting the injunction is covered in detail here:
AFL Drug Takers Named and Shamed

Citations: The Age, 10/3/2006; The AFL, 10/3/2006

Word Count: 822

Labels: , , ,


<     >

Friday, March 03, 2006

Racist Remarks Shame AFL Club

It seems we spoke too soon in earlier praising the West Coast Eagles for their handling of uncontrollable spoilt brat Ben Cousins' Marathon Man flight from justice. Their response to this week's "yet another footballer assaulting his girlfriend" case is, sadly, highly racist.

Hot on the heals of some frank remarks and positive actions by senior officials with the Weagles over the Ben Cousins booze bus incident, it seems we were too quick to recognise and reward. The response to the Ashley Sampi knife-threat incident shows a disappointing return to form for an AFL club that was meant to be showing others the way. But first, the breaking scandal itself. Here's how it was reported earlier in the week:

West Coast Eagles forward Ashley Sampi is wanted for questioning over allegedly threatening his girlfriend with a knife.

Two women told West Australian detectives on Tuesday Sampi had threatened one of them with a knife on Monday night, the Seven Network reported.

The West Australian AFL club confirmed it was aware police wished to interview Sampi regarding a domestic incident with his girlfriend.

But the West Coast Eagles would not give further details of the incident. (Seven News, 28/02/06)

Fair enough - a straight up account of another bloody footballer throwing his weight around, threatening people and generally being a violent thug. Admittedly, this case involves a potentially life-threatening weapon - a knife. Just a few weeks ago we covered the Melbourne Magistrates Court (AFL Division) dealings with Demon's golden boy Colin Sylvia allegedly kicking his girlfriend. While it may be too harsh saying that AFL player domestic violence happens all the time, it's certainly a regular enough occurrence that all the clubs' PR flaks would have a well-thumbed manila folder with "In Case of Player Attacking Wife/Girlfriend" written on it. West Coast's spin doctors would have at least as much experience with handling this sort of thing as any other club. Instead, what we got was this piece of rubbish:

"It is a sensitive personal indigenous situation which the club has been assisting, and will continue to assist, through counselling," the club said in a statement.

"The club will make no further statement regarding the matter." (Seven News, 28/02/06)

Did you spot it? That's right, the totally racist and pandering inclusion of the word "indigenous". Racism is still alive within the AFL, despite it's much-lauded campaigns to eradicate this from the game. No doubt a brief statement like this was pored over by a number of club advisers, experts and officials. Therefore, this word was not an off-hand or casual remark; it's a calculated and contrived piece of spin-doctoring for which I hope the wider community condemns the club.

Let's analyse the calculation the club made. First of all, if they'd released the statement without the word "indigenous", most readers would have thought "Oh, another bloody dickhead footballer has stuffed up. Look at that - the violent angry knob in question is from West Coast. Again! What's up with that club? Do they attract the bad ones or do they go bad under toxic management?" This is clearly a reaction the club would like to avoid. In order to deflect such sentiments, they slyly paint it as not a West Coast Eagles problem, but an indigenous situation. Presumably, the intent is to induce a reaction of "bloody Abos, fighting with knives again" instead. (Let's face it, the club's wily supposition that your average AFL supporter is not going to get passed their inherent racism is well-founded.) Why else would they mention that the knife-wielding offender is indigenous? This disgraceful, sickening and disgusting behaviour is symptomatic of a desperate leadership under siege. I can only hope that they are called to account for their decision and community leaders call them on it.

That said, we should not lose sight of the behaviour of one Ashley Sampi in all this. Here's a large, well-paid, famous young man who feels the need to threaten women with a knife. He's pleaded guilty to one count of this today in Perth's Magistrate Court. (Unlike Melbourne they don't have an AFL Division, so he's appearing in a regular court.)

West Coast Eagles forward Ashley Sampi has pleaded guilty to assault and weapons charges after threatening his girlfriend's sister with a knife.

The 22-year-old AFL footballer was charged with common assault and carrying a weapon with intent to cause fear after a domestic argument on Monday involving his girlfriend and her sister.

Police alleged that around 8pm (WST) on Monday, Sampi verbally threatened his girlfriend's 22-year-old sister and pointed a knife at her.

Sampi, supported by an entourage which included his girlfriend, appeared in Perth Magistrates Court for a hearing before magistrate Doug Jones.

But Mr Jones said he could not hear the matter after Sampi's lawyer Peter Momber said the footballer was pleading guilty to the charges.

The matter was moved into a neighbouring court where Mr Momber told Magistrate Barbara Lane his client pleaded guilty.(The Age, 3/3/2006)

Note that, just like the Colin Sylvia case, the girlfriend is sticking by her man. Given the original reports involved statements by two women, but only one is standing up in court, it's fair to say this has probably caused problems between the sisters. Violence between a couple in a relationship is complex and I'm sure further remarks here won't help.

So, to re-iterate, this is not an "indigenous situation" - this is a "stupid thuggish Aussie Rules professional footballer situation". Any attempts to deflect it from this - even to protect commercial interests like sponsorship deals - is a racist act and must be seen as such. Shame on you, West Coast, shame!

*** UPDATE ***

Ashley Sampi's AFL career seems over now that he's declined to attempt a fitness test. This is the second West Coast Eagles player this month to be delisted for refusing to attempt a test that could reveal an ongoing problem with what he puts in his body. Fortunately for Sampi, we're only talking about pies, not crystal meth. Now Sampi will try secure a berth in another club. Perhaps Ricky Nixon can offer a two-for-one deal?

Citations: Seven News, 28/02/06; The Age, 3/3/2006

Word Count: 973

Labels: , ,


«           *           »