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Tom Cole continues to do free PR work for Linda McMahon and Jerry McDevitt

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Tom Cole continues to have fond memories of everyone's favourite down to earth, once bankrupt, now near billionaire grandmother, Linda McMahon.  (Wikimedia Commons)
Tom Cole continues to have fond memories of everyone's favourite down to earth, once bankrupt, now near billionaire grandmother, Linda McMahon. (Wikimedia Commons)

As David Bixenspan detailed here last August, Politico became the first (and as it turned out only) major news outlet to investigate Linda McMahon's involvement in handling the fallout from the 1992 WWF sex scandal stemming from the harassment and abuse of ring boys by certain WWF officials.  The story gained no traction after Tom Cole told Politico via WWE lawyer Jerry McDevitt that his views about Linda McMahon had changed in recent years, he was now thankful at how she handled the situation and even claimed to have sent her a cheque to her campaign fund due to their common political beliefs.

In a strange development, in an interview with long time wrestling columnist and Charlston SC journalist Mike Mooneyham published yesterday, Tom Cole continued to do free PR for Linda McMahon and Jerry McDevitt, despite Linda having long since lost her election, reiterating and expanding upon what he said to Politico last August.  According to Cole, with the benefit of hindsight he now understands why the McMahons, in particular Linda, behaved the way they did towards him:

I wanted the right thing to be done.  I'm older now.  Over the years I've begun to realize how things are done.  They wanted to protect their company, but ultimately they did the right thing....

What happened happened, but as the years have gone by, I also realize that 20 years have passed and those guys never went back to the company....

I never really had a disdain for her.  I wasn't happy with the way things had turned out at that point.  I didn't think she was an evil woman, but she had a company she had to protect in any way she could.  I guess I would do the same thing to protect certain things.

On the issue of wrestler deaths, he eerily agreed with Linda McMahon that although the consequences of death is a very sad thing when that happensWWE shouldn't be held responsible for the unfortunate deaths of their performers:

Obviously it's very sad anytime anyone dies, but people have to take accountability for themselves.  I was around the business as a young kid until my early ‘20s.  I saw a lot of stuff, but you can't blame WWE for everything.  Could they have handled things better?  Of course they could have.

It's all about accountability.  Chris Benoit had a major steroid problem before he came to the WWF. He was 60 pounds over what he should have been for a normal guy.  This guy had these problems before he even got there.  They talk a lot about the concussion syndrome, but some of these guys played football and had concussions prior to wrestling.  Did wrestling speed it along somehow?  I'm sure in a sense that it did, but who the hell knew?  Twenty years from now things will be run differently in all sports.  You learn as you go....

At the end of the day, regardless if you're a wrestler, regardless if you're a ring announcer, you have to take accountability for yourself.  Nobody turns you into a drug addict.  Nobody turns you into a bad father.  You have to be a man and you have to own up.

Unsurprisingly Cole also heaped praise on Jerry McDevitt, the WWE attorney who is becoming increasingly quick to send nasty legal letters people's way (like Irv Muchnick and Dave Meltzer):

I've had a very cordial relationship with Jerry over the past seven or eight years.  He's got a job to do.  But at the same time he never asked me to retract anything.  People don't get the whole picture.  I'm not silly enough to think he doesn't have a job protecting them.  That's his job.  But I could always clear the air with him if I had any questions.  That's it.  I'm happy that he acknowledged it.  It's a clean slate, and I can move on.

I found him to be pretty fair.  If you're on the up and up with him, he'll be on the up and up with you as much as he can possibly be.  If you try to BS him, he's a good lawyer and worth his weight in gold.  There is a human side to him.  If I had to have a lawyer, I would hope he'd be like Jerry McDevitt.

Cole also made sure to bash those online journalists (i.e. Irv Muchnick) who have an "unhealthy obsession" with Linda McMahon:

It's obsessive to say the least ... it's one thing to bash a company.  But to verbally attack a person on such a personal level is just disturbing.

They have no idea about me, my life, what I have and who I've become.  They can say whatever they want ... I haven't flip-flopped about anything.  I don't care who's happy or who's not happy about it.   Linda and Vince both admitted what happened.  That's all I ever wanted.   I'm happy and my wife's happy that it turned out that way.

So it should come as no surprise that when Irv Muchnick criticised Mooneyham for not probing his interview subject enough, guess who, but none other than Thomas Cole publicly trolled him:

Irv,
who are you to bash me?  I had NO intention of talking to the press regarding Linda or the WWE.  That is until you leaked my contact information to several outlets.  I have a right to my opinion regardless if you agree with it or not.  I also have a right to defend myself against the verbal attacks you have made against me.
You have a tendency to verbally attack anybody who may have a differing opinion than yours.  I spoke to Mike Mooneyhan because I felt he was fair in past dealings I've had with him.  I suppose I should "crawl back under a rock" now.  Congratulations on being anointed Mr Self Righteous.
Regards
Thomas Cole

Irv sensibly didn't rise to the bait with a retaliatory verbal attack on Cole, instead responding by sticking to the facts:

I have never leaked Tom Cole's contact information "to several outlets," or to anyone.  When Cole issued a statement to Politico.com (via Jerry McDevitt), I did note - as I continue to note - that it marked a reversal of things he'd said, on the record, both to Wrestling Perspective and to me directly.