Skip to comments.Let's Face It, The Olympics Are Always Ridiculous And Usually Financially Disastrous
Posted on 02/05/2014 12:23:29 PM PST by SeekAndFind
As journalists arrive in Sochi, the Russian city hosting the 2014 Winter Olympic Games, they are noticing some strange things; there were the two toilets in a single stall, taps are spewing some kind of poisonous semi-opaque liquid, and professional athletes are dropping out of events due to the fact that they are afraid of injury and/or death on some of the freshly built facilities.
Obviously, this isn't good. Russian President Vladimir Putin has staked a lot on Sochi, hoping to show that Russia is a modern, organized, safe country. These bumps, even if pretty trivial in the grand scheme, are embarrassing. And of course, given the fact that Russia's Olympics are said to the most expensive ever, it doesn't seem like a sensible expense. So far, it seems like Russia spent $51 billion to look ridiculous.
Still, we should remember that the games at Sochi haven't actually started yet and, more importantly, in the build-up to the games, the Olympics always appear ridiculous.
Think back to the London Summer Olympics. Back in July 2012, just a few weeks before the games started, Business Insider published a list that outlined the "43 Signs That The London Olympics Will Be A Complete Disaster." Here's some of the points we had:
* The London Summer Olympics were said to be 107% over budget.
* The Aquatics Centre, budgeted at $118 million, eventually ended up costing $434 million.
* Security costs were believed to reach $1.6 billion. Plans to privatize Olympic security turned into a disaster when controversial firm G4S failed to recruit enough people.
* Unemployed people bussed in to work as unpaid stewards before the games were reportedly told to sleep under London Bridge.
* Hotels were reportedly slashing their prices to get rid of all of their empty rooms.
(Excerpt) Read more at businessinsider.com ...
Maybe they should hire Romney.
I have been looking for info on Russia and their 13% flat tax. Trying to find the figures on that and the 58 or so Billion spent.
Isn’t the London Bridge now in Lake Havasu, Ariz.?
The guy does need a job.
I’m pretty sure about one thing. If the Sochi Olympics turn out to be screwed up some people had better pack warm for Siberia. Czar Vlad will not be amused.
I don’t know when the IOC will wise up and do one of the following:
1. Put the winter Olympics into a single place all the time so that billions don’t have to be spent for one-use-per-lifetime set of venues.
2. Assign events to certain countries in a world-wide Olympic sports-fest. Such as Hockey in the US, Skiing events in the Euro alps, ice skating... anywhere, etc.
3. Do #2, but rotate events to various countries - particularly in places that have previously hosted winter games.
Every 4 years, there’s some major problem because things aren’t ready or security is bad or there’s no snow or logistics aren’t in place. And it almost always wastes money. This is all solvable, but nobody ever entertains the idea.
Well, your proposals are smart but there’s only one problem. They limit the opportunities for graft.
I was just thinking this with the latest wave of “bad” news. There’s always a bunch of weird stuff that makes it look like imminent disaster right before things start, then the Olympics happen and nobody remembers to have a disaster.
Vancouver was relatively cheap to stage compared to other Olympics...most venues were already built. Their biggest problem was lack of snow
Vancouver was a lot better run than Atlanta in 1996 (I did not go to Salt Lake)
Although I like the Olympics because of the competition...the Olympics are proof that Globalism doesn’t work.
They lost me at snowboarding.
I always wondered why ANY city would want to host the Olympics.
Then I realized that the Olympics are an amazing opportunity for graft on the part of the city government.
The reporters assigned to cover the Games are now arriving in earnest, and some of what they’re discovering is....well, sorta funky.
Check out some of the photos here: http://www.interpretermag.com/the-48-hour-dash-liveblog/
They’ve advised the reporters not to put the water on their face, because “it will burn your skin”.
The original one. The replacement isn’t that impressive either!
I was in Vancouver for those Olympics ... I thought, great, I’ll have a local advantage in getting seats.
Not a chance. One third of all tickets are reserved for IOC countries, meaning EVERY world country, even ones in Africa that send no team, ever, to the Winter Olympics. Of course all those tickets are scalped at high prices.
The rest are sold thru an “internet lottery”, which seems to favor the well-off with super-high-speed connections. Too bad for the average schlub.
Oh, and in return, the whole city was forced to endure construction chaos for 3 years leading up to the event. PLus the billions spent, just for 2 lousy weeks.
So IOW, living in the host city gets you nothing but headaches. Good deal for the IOC, bad for the taxpayer.
I have a couple of friends in Istanbul that were (naturally) rooting for Istanbul to get the Olympics, and I told them, “No. Trust me - you don’t want it.” I told them to read up on the subject; what a headache it is, the graft involved, etc.
After Tokyo got the games, they were like, “Oh, thank God that won’t have to be our headache.” Tokyo is better prepared for the Games (well, provided Godzilla doesn’t show up or something).
Erdogan is alleged to be well-connected and well-invested in construction companies in Istanbul, so that’s probably why he wanted it so bad. Those companies would be building the facilities for the Games.
Below is the current rather plain in comparison bridge in London known as London bridge.
This is the one it replaced and was moved to Lake Havasu. Here it is in Lake Havsu.
The Winter Olympics brought Steve Van Zandt to Lilyhammer!