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[personal profile] earendil31
This is a direct response to [livejournal.com profile] quasiskunk 's post on the choice of Rio as host city for the 2016 Summer Olympic Games.

As someone with 0 political connections in Chicago, a commuter, and the son of an Olympian, I can say that I for one would have been very happy if Chicago were picked.  While I am glad that they ended up going to a new place instead of Japan (had it before) or Madrid (Europe again???), I would rather have had it here in my home city.

Exotic, you say? For most of the countries in the Olympics, and particularly the developing nations, Brazil is far closer to their everyday lives than the United States.  As for the money, only in the US are cities expected to pay for the Games themselves with no higher level fiscal aid.  With the Corporate Olympics in Atlanta '96 as the result.  I would have been more than willing to pay a little more for the chance to show off my city to the world.  But that makes me a part of an isolated minority in this country: I don't mind paying to have nice things.

The first round loss... that has as much if not more to do with the internal politics of the IOC than it dos the bid itself.  The USOC and the IOC have been at odds over nearly everything from funding to trademarks to broadcast rights for years now, and some IOC members would have voted against Chicago even if the other cities were Pyongyang and Chernobyl, just to spite the USOC.  Also, the "natural geographic voting blocs" enjoyed by the other cities were far larger than that of the US.  It will always be an uphill battle for any US city to get the summer games.

Finally, while the benefits of the Games to Chicago were always a point of debate, losing the Games in this manner will only be bad.  All political motivation (to say nothing of political capital) to improve the city has effectively vanished.    Since there isn't an impetus to make things better, and since the Council will block everything the Mayor does from now until he's out of office.... I don't think I really need to go on. We now return you to our regularly scheduled problems of roadwork, snow removal, and bad schools.

The really unfortunate part, is that if the IOC decides that this new "pattern" (new and obviously overlooked country - safe city - new and obviously overlooked country) is the new way of things, the next chance for Chicago won't be for some decades.

Enjoy the Games, Rio, you won them well.
Better luck in 2040 Chicago.

***EDIT*** A lot of people are also saying, in essence, the following:

"Chicago is corrupt and so the IOC decided not to vote for a corrupt city where the "same old guys" would profit from everything."

Are you joking? This is the same IOC that voted for BEIJING, CHINA.  The "same old guys" have been profitting over there for 60 YEARS.  And as if Rio doesn't have corruption and crime issues?  If you really think that a crime report had any impact on people, some of whose countries are fighting active insurgencies right now as we type, I'm sorry, I can't help you.

Date: 2009-10-02 08:33 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sssage.livejournal.com
Here HERE! I serious doubt chicago did anything wrong in that we were the first one's out. Admittedly I don't think we put our greatest foot forward, but I was still hoping that maybe, you know?

I wonder why Madison hasn't made a push for the olympics??

Date: 2009-10-02 08:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jet-der-hund.livejournal.com
Madison WI was going to host the bike events if Chicago won.

Date: 2009-10-02 08:41 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] sssage.livejournal.com
yeah I know that, but why not try an host it themselves instead of us. Just always wondered with it being filled with adventure sports fans and places to do them

Date: 2009-10-02 09:40 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] organized-sound.livejournal.com
GREAT final point. and i'm sure political graft is unknown in rio as well.

Date: 2009-10-02 11:27 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] quasiskunk.livejournal.com
Well, yeah, downtown Rio, Brasilia, and Sao Paulo look just like any other large, mega city. But when it comes to exotic and unseen (by the athletes, fans, and others) its hard to beat a rainforest over the prairies and cornfields of the Midwest. That, and some of the cultures and ideals from the locals would also be very interesting to hear Bob Costas try and describe :)

But, back to what I said. Yes, the US has to pay for it itself. Normally, its thru major corporate buy-ins, such as McDs, Chevy, Ford, etc. But, Chicago and the broke state of Illinois were guaranteeing all sorts of fundage, most of which they didn't have, or had no idea where it was coming from. That is the main reason why I didn't want it here. I don't want the state to have had to pay for it over other more appropriate programs, much less the state having any say in it whatsoever. I also didn't believe that the plan for "removable and portable" stadiums would have worked. Too much engineering for 2 weeks worth of use? I think so.

Would I have gone to it if it were fully funded? Oh, HELL yeah. Heck, I would have been in line to be one of the mascots for them, no matter the pay or the hours. I'm disappointed in that I won't be able to do that now. I would have loved to soak in the frenzy and cheer on athletes from countries I'd only read about. I missed the opportunity to go to any of the World Cup games; I sure as hell wouldn't want to make that mistake again. And I would have paid to see them; but not over 15-20 + years.


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