Sebastian Coe does not like the idea of gymnasts going to raves. He doesn't want them getting E'd off their faces in fields. He doesn't want synchronised swimmers slipping off their nose clips to wang a line of charlie. He doesn't want to see archers on speed.
With all this concern, it sounds like the London Olympics are going to be quite the party.
Michael Stow, head of science and medicine at UK Anti-Doping (the agency responsible for drug testing in British sport) has suggested relaxing the rules on recreational drugs in time for 2012. Good news for the nightclubs of Hackney, if not the street cleaners.
Athletes currently receive an automatic two-year ban if they are found using prohibited stimulants. Mr Stow thinks this penalty is a little draconian when the stimulants are not always intended for cheating.
"More often," he says, "it's a case of them being used in a social setting." That's a charming use of language. A "social setting"? One pictures an array of athletes taking tea on the lawns of a stately home, their muscles rippling under lace gowns and boaters.
"May I offer you a cucumber sandwich?"
"Very kind. Might I pass you the crack pipe?"
"Thank you, I won't. But I wouldn't say no to a spot of LSD and perhaps another slice of that wonderful Dundee cake."
Michael Stow argues that "social" drugs should not necessarily result in the same ban as the cheating type. Retired Olympian Steve Cram says he might be right.
Enter Lord Coe.
"There is no ambiguity," he roared. "You want to be part of this project then don't take drugs. Full stop. There is no place for drugs. You can't mix the message up. It is the morality of the knacker's yard."
Thrilling! I love his certainty, I love his rhetoric; I love his strong, clear, emphatic statement of principle. There is something incredibly seductive, in these nervous, non-committal and focus-groupy times, about a person who knows his own mind and is not afraid to say so.
Most of us feel confused, indecisive and slightly fraudulent as we scurry around pretending to be grown-ups. Lost, flawed and desperate for guidance (or is that just me?), we're suckers for someone who appears to know what's what.
We love the crisp, Tannoyed voice of an airline pilot, the busy sternness of a hospital doctor, the ethical clarity of a vicar or the technical know-how of a visiting builder – all of whom probably feel equally confused and fraudulent underneath, but God bless them for pretending otherwise. Someone in this mess has got to be mother. That's why, however strong the arguments for electoral reform, the British will never go for it because the one thing we don't want is an uncertain coalition. Lucky we haven't… oh.
Reading Michael Stow's arguments, I drifted in my usual fog of moral relativism (Sportsmen should be role models, shouldn't they? Or is that an unjust burden? Drugs ruin lives and bodies, don't they? Or is that hysterical? I'm allowed an opinion, aren't I? Or am I too drug-ignorant to be qualified? Should I wait until I stop waking up in the night in tears for everything I might be screwing up in my own life, holding on to heartfelt faith but doubting my own hopeful actions and inactions, staring my errors and fears and faults and massive life-gambles in the face, praying daily that this bumpy and winding path leads home, before I start judging other people?) until Seb Coe's fearless absolutism burned through like a shaft of sunlight.
For Lord Coe, it's simple. Bend the rules for Olympic athletes? That way, he knows, lies the coke-snorting, drunk-driving, tart-shagging, spit-roasting, injunction-shopping lifestyle of the footballer. No dice. That's one problem solved. Hurray!
Then I turned the page and read that activists are putting posters up all over east London which say "Shariah Controlled Zone: no alcohol, no gambling, no music or concerts, no form of prostitution, no drugs or smoking". I assume these are not intended solely for the incoming athletes.
And I thought: no drugs, I like that. No smoking: bit harsh, I wish they'd just kept it to restaurants. No alcohol: wouldn't be a big problem for me, might feel a bit sorry for those who love a pint, I'd be delighted to compromise on "No drunkenness". No prostitution: unrealistic, better to legalise and tax it for the workers' protection. No gambling: that would be bearable as long as people understood the moral and practical differences between poker, sports betting and casino gaming, which they don't. No music or concerts: don't be so bloody stupid.
And I realised: 1) politically, we all know exactly what we believe, even we limp-liberal relativists who like to see all sides; we cheer strong opining only when it's the expression of what we secretly or unconsciously think already, stated more bravely than we'd dare ourselves.
2) Governments operate exactly like we do, their certainties a boringly predictable product of their environment and experience. Being increasingly made up of career politicians straight out of university, they are rather particular: they do drink, they don't smoke, they fear drugs, they like music, they're deeply conflicted about prostitutes and they don't know the first thing about gambling.
So, I tell myself and anyone with a similar weakness: beware the yearning for clear leadership, for as long as Parliament is so stubbornly homogeneous. It's comforting at home. But until a wider range of social types is in that house, be grateful for every vagueness, every uncertainty and every law they don't make.
Having said that, Sebastian Coe is still right. Obviously the drug rules for athletes should not be softened up. I mean, like, duh.