Archive for January 11th, 2010

Tony ‘Ludvig Borga’ Halme Committed Suicide: Finnish Newspaper

Ilta-Sanomat, a tabloid newspaper in Finland, is reporting that former World Wrestling Entertainment wrestler Tony “Ludvig Borga” Halme’s death at 47 was by suicide.

(Thanks again to Mike Aldren of the online Wrestling Globe Newsletter.)

Paging David Westin, President of ABC News

Your humble blogger emailed David Westin, the president of ABC News, with questions about weekend Good Morning America co-host Kate Snow’s miserable piece on Linda McMahon on Saturday’s World News Tonight. See my critical blogs about this over the weekend.

Unfortunately, the folks on the phone at the ABC News media relations office will not even confirm that they received the email. So let me restate my questions to Westin here.

Mr. Westin, were you proud of Snow’s “report” on a major candidate for the U.S. Senate seat in Connecticut?

Also, a text story at the ABC News website at least vaguely referenced a question to McMahon about the occupational health and safety standards of World Wrestling Entertainment. Yet you also subsequently published online a transcript of Snow’s interview with McMahon, in which the subject comes up not at all. What gives there?

Thanks, Mr. Westin. You can email me at Or send one of those direct messages on Twitter to @irvmuch.

Ask the Candidates: What Do You Think About Linda McMahon and Death in Pro Wrestling?

[the text below was emailed and/or faxed to all four candidates]

Dear Connecticut U.S. Senate candidates:

Last week my blog,, published a  seven-part series headlined “Senate Candidate Linda McMahon Has No Good Answer to This Question.”You can read the complete adaptation of the series as a single post at

The essence of the blog series is the following question: “No fewer than 11 performers from the 1991 WrestleMania show alone of Linda McMahon’s World Wrestling Entertainment would go on to die before age 50. Factors seem to include recreational drug abuse; abuse of anabolic steroids, along with painkillers, depression and anxiety medication, and other prescription drugs; and brain damage caused by dangerous industrial stunts, such as slamming chairs off their heads. Why should the voters of Connecticut not be taking into account this disturbing record of occupational health and safety?”

I seek the responses to this question of Ms. McMahon and Messrs. Simmons, Blumenthal, and Schiff.

Please respond by email to I will publish all responses on my blog at around 1 p.m. Eastern time on Wednesday, January 13.

Thank you for your attention to this.

Irvin Muchnick

Wrestling Journalist Calls Borga Death ‘Another Example of Bill Coming Due’

In an email to me, James Caldwell of Pro Wrestling Torch strikes the right balance in reacting to this blog’s item about Tony “Ludvig Borga” Halme. (By the way, I’ve seen both “Ludwig” and “Ludvig,” and I used the former in the previous item, but it appears that the latter is the correct spelling of his World Wrestling Entertainment stage name in 1993-94.)

James writes: “I don’t think there’s any way right now we can accurately link Halme’s death to wrestling, but it’s another example of the ‘bill coming due’ for WWE after pushing steroid bodies in the 1980s, 1990s, and early 2000s. And it’s a big bill.”

I thank James for the comment. And I add:

Bill for trying to buy a U.S. Senate seat for Linda McMahon? Fifty million dollars.

Bill for a senseless body count of dead athletes in a “worked” sport — either directly or indirectly tied to the way the McMahon family has run this business? Priceless.

Irv Muchnick

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January 2010