Friday, October 2, 2009

The Illusions of Olympic Victory

Rio de Janeiro gets 2016 Summer Olympics

The Windy City, considered a favourite to be one of two finalists, mustered only 18 of a possible 95 votes. In the end, Rio de Janeiro prevailed with 66 votes to Madrid's 32.

Chicago didn't win? Shocking!

Where was the governor of Illinois when we needed him? Impeached? Convicted? Removed from office? Prohibited permanently from holding any future office of honor or trust under the convicting State? Indicted by a federal grand jury? Inquiring minds want to know!

Michelle Obama's 'Personal Sacrifice' to Boost Chicago

The effort and energy needed to make the president and first lady's quick trips to Copenhagen possible could be considered Olympic-sized by some estimates. The approximate cost of flying Air Force One round trip for 18 hours calculates to more than $1.2 million -- roughly $67,000 per hour.

The estimated greenhouse gas emissions of Air Force One for that trip amount to more than 1 million pounds of carbon dioxide. Compare that to a roundtrip on Amtrak from New York to Washington D.C. emits 220 pounds of carbon dioxide. The president's trip is the equivalent to 4,500 of those roundtrips.

The Boeing 757 the first lady rode separately emits nearly 374,000 pounds of carbon dioxide.

Those figures do not include the operational costs or emissions of the several passenger and cargo aircraft that accompany Air Force One with staff and equipment.

Ever heard of carpooling? Seriously.

We elected you to be stewards of our money and all we got was 1.4+ million pounds of carbon dioxide, a bill for $1.2+ million, and
this lousy T-Shirt.


EconomicDisconnect said...

The first one eliminated was a bit of a smack, I guess the world is sick of the US in general, not just our financial products!

Stagflationary Mark said...


"The first one eliminated was a bit of a smack..."

Oh, come on. Let's be optimistic.

18 of a possible 95 votes

The glass is 18.9% full!

Stagflationary Mark said...

Chicago in Shock at Elimination From 2016 Games

“I’m totally shocked, totally shocked,” said Kathie Stellman, who took a train from her home in the suburb of Elk Grove Village on Friday morning to watch the vote. “I am disappointed, I didn’t think it would be over so soon. I guess we’ll go get lunch.”

Oh, the humanity! They are resorting to lunch!

“It’s like a slap in face, absolutely incredible,” said Jim Podojil, 67, who was also at Daley Plaza. “I really thought we would win. Once Obama said he was going, I thought he would give one of his impassioned speeches and this would be a couple hours of merry making.”

Forget Obama. I thought for sure Oprah could work her magic. *sarcasm*

mab said...


I don't know what the world is coming to. You'd think that with Chicago's long and storied history of political corruption and bribery, paying off a few crooked IOC members to land the Olympics would be a snap.

Seriously. The IOC awards the Olympics to the city that shows up with the biggest brown bag!

Chicago should have sent Blagojevich instead of the three 0's (Barrack, Michelle and Oprah). Blago knows how to close a back room deal. Old man Mayor Daly must rolling over in his grave.

Charming speeches are fine for wooing the masses (sheep). Effecting "change" and getting things done is an entirely different matter.

Obama has no shot at beneficially reforming health care, energy or the financial system. None, zip, zilch, nada, bupkiss, zero. Less than a snowball's chance in you know where.

Obama just diminished misguided perceptions of his effectiveness. It's probably for the best though. At this point, this country is probably better off with a healthy dose of reality than the Olymics.

mab said...


This helps explain why so many pinned their hopes on the three 0's:

For ... (insert name of preferred deity)'s... sake! Like sending Oprah wasn't going to be perceived as an insult to the IOC.

The IOC wants to be viewed as a serious deliberating body and we send Oprah, the world's most overpaid cheerleader. Someone that capitalizes on the gullibilty and vanity of the masses.

As if.

Stagflationary Mark said...


From your link...

"In attempts to get cargo to fall by parachute or land in planes or ships again, islanders imitated the same practices they had seen the soldiers, sailors, and airmen use. They carved headphones from wood and wore them while sitting in fabricated control towers. They waved the landing signals while standing on the runways. They lit signal fires and torches to light up runways and lighthouses. The cult members thought that the foreigners had some special connection to the deities and ancestors of the natives, who were the only beings powerful enough to produce such riches."

Holy cow. Learn something new every day. These days the cult members would no doubt fashion small cards with VISA printed on them.

mab said...


These days the cult members would no doubt fashion small cards with VISA printed on them

Hundreds of millions of cult member HAVE fashioned small cards with VISA printed in them.

From the Cargo Cult Wiki link:

For example, Maoism has been referred to as "cargo cult Marxism"[citation needed], and New Zealand's optimistic adoption of liberal economic policies in the 1980s as "cargo cult capitalism".

I thought about bringing up Iceland, Latvia, Estonia, Argentia etc. but there is no need. A parallel can be found much closer to home. Actually it can be found AT home.

It's mind boggling that we actually believed we could borrow and spend our way to prosperity. And to think, the key to it all was we had to keep buying houses we couldn't afford.

Or how about this one: People in the past earned big money by owning stocks. So we can all stop working and saving and just invest in stocks and we will all get wealthy together. Who wouldn't like that?

We are an ignorant lot. The Gods must be laughing like crazy.

Stagflationary Mark said...


"The Gods must be laughing like crazy."

I was listening to the radio on my way home from yet another shopping adventure and this is what I heard on the "Allan Hunt" show. I'll paraphrase.

Perhaps we should offer $25,000 for each child born in this country as an incentive to offset the aging population and reduced number of babies being born.

The first caller somewhat heckled the host. He wanted to know where the money would come from. The host, not deterred, said we should abolish the Department of Energy and the Department of Education.

It never ends. In an only slightly related story...

Religious nuts in Texas seek to ban book about book banning!

My forehead can't take much more, nor can my desk.