Olympic Failure

View previous topic View next topic Go down

Olympic Failure

Post by Alexander Nevsky on Fri Oct 02, 2009 10:02 pm


Obama’s Olympic failure will only add to doubts about his presidency

There has been a growing narrative taking hold about Barack Obama’s presidency in recent weeks: that he is loved by many, but feared by none; that he is full of lofty vision, but is actually achieving nothing with his grandiloquence.
Chicago’s dismal showing yesterday, after Mr Obama’s personal, impassioned last-minute pitch, is a stunning humiliation for this President. It cannot be emphasised enough how this will feed the perception that on the world stage he looks good — but carries no heft.


It was only the Olympic Games, the White House will argue — not a high-stakes diplomatic gamble with North Korea. It is always worthwhile when Mr Obama sells America to the rest of the world, David Axelrod, his chief political adviser, said today. But that argument will fall on deaf ears in the US. Americans want their presidents to be winners.

Mr Obama was greeted — as usual — like a rock star by the IOC delegates in Copenhagen — then humiliated by them. Perception is reality. A narrow defeat for Chicago would have been acceptable — but the sheer scale of the defeat was a bombshell, and is a major blow for Mr Obama at a time when questions are being asked about his style of governance.
At home, it is difficult to turn on a television and not see Mr Obama giving a press conference, or an interview, or at a town hall rally, in his all-out effort to sell his troubled reform the US health insurance system. After three months of enormous exposure, Mr Obama has achieved this: the growing likelihood of ramming a Bill through Congress with — at most — just one Republican vote.

Abroad, Mr Obama promised in his Inauguration address to engage America’s enemies, and he has done just that. He has very little to show for it. Yes, Iran took part in bilateral talks with the US this week over its nuclear weapons programme — but that is something Tehran has wanted for years. There is still a very good chance that the meetings will prove to be an exercise in futility and a time-wasting ploy by Tehran.

Mr Obama also scrapped a plan for a missile defence shield in the Czech Republic and Poland, hoping to get in return Russian co-operation behind new sanctions against Tehran. There was optimism when President Medvedev said “sanctions are seldom productive, but they are sometimes inevitable”. Yet Vladimir Putin, and the Chinese, remain fiercely opposed to sanctions.
Meanwhile, America and its allies are being forced to witness a very public agonising by Mr Obama and his advisers over his Afghan strategy — six months after he announced that strategy.

This has all added to the perception that Mr Obama’s soaring rhetoric — which captured the imagination during last year’s election — is simply not enough when it comes to confronting the myriad challenges of the presidency. His spectacular Olympic failure will only add to that.


-Tim Reid




http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article6859031.ece#
avatar
Alexander Nevsky

Number of posts : 80
Registration date : 2008-09-29

View user profile

Back to top Go down

This makes more sense

Post by 911Dispatcher on Sat Oct 03, 2009 2:02 pm

After All the Hyperanalysis... Today's Chicago Sun Times has the first ten pages and half the sports pages dedicated to analyis and hyperanalysis of Chicago's loss of the Olympic bid. One Sun Times article called the Olympic snub an after effect of "anti American bias." That's interesting because I thought that all ended when Obama was elected. With every analysis, there was a different perspective. Rick Telander thought it was a rejection of Daley's arrogance. Of course, the murder of Derrion Albert could have played a role as well.The reality is that no one knows but the IOC and they aren't speaking. It's just one of many problems in the process of being chosen and then ultimately putting on the games that I have seen in following Chicago's bid. Frankly, that the IOC is totally non transparent in their voting process is the least of my problems. Sure it probably means they are corrupt and it's likely that bribery is often involved and we learned it was in Salt Lake. Of course, that should just mean that less cities decide to participate. That doesn't seem to ever be a problem. For instance, Chicago started planning for the Olympics in the spring of 2006. So, if we were awarded the games, that would mean more than ten years of planning for a two week party. Does anyone else see a problem with that? It's hard to know what the price tag for the last two and half years was but it's somewhere in the neighborhood of $100 million. We're told that was all private money but that's also hard to track. The city's current budget shortfall is $750 million. Does anyone else see a problem with a city spending a $100 million just to see if they can get the games?Conservatives are now taking their potshots at the President. After all, he went to Copenhagen and Chicago was rejected anyway. Yet, what most Conservatives don't say is that the national leaders of all four cities went. In fact, Tony Blair went to pitch London in their eventual and successful quest to host the 2012 Summer Olympics. It's now a demand, unwritten of course, that the IOC see the national leader of the city's country in order to get the games. Some are saying that the prestige of the presidency was weakened by Chicago not getting the games. Here's what those that are saying this aren't saying. Had Obama not gone, Chicago wouldn't have gotten the games. (as it turns out it didn't matter) You can bet those same people would have blamed him for not getting the games. So, Chicago worked for two and a half years on the bid and then it was held hostage to a fifteen minute presidential appearance. Isn't that twisted? Isn't the process a bit twisted when the thoughts of Euro liberals now determine the prestige of the presidency?The folks of Rio seem to be excited and I wish them well. I hope that in three or four years they will be just as excited. For instance, the host city contract that they signed means that the IOC gives them a fixed amount of money and Rio covers the rest. They plan on spending $14 billion by the end but projections seven years into the future are nearly impossible to make. So, Rio maybe stuck spending more than $20 billion to have a two week party. That's some party. The host city contract also means that all decisions must be approved by the IOC. So, for the next seven years, Rio is no longer run by Rio but by the IOC. In other words, every single Rio decision will now be approved by the IOC. So, the city of Rio, for the next seven years, will be run by the International Olympic Committee.Here in Chicago there were a few marginal debates in trying to balance a plethora of new Olympics sites with the current natural habitat and with the citizens that had to be displaced to build them. That's a hard balance. That's of course because Chicago is a city and not a never ending sports complex. Cities aren't meant to be never ending sports complexes and yet that's what the IOC demands that any host city does. Beyond that, they have a contract that demands enforcement of their demands. It's not that easy to build a sports complex for every single sporting event known to man and also make sure that many of the citizens of your city aren't displaced, natural habitat isn't destroyed, and life isn't disrupted for years at a time. Yet, that's exactly what happens to any host city. Here in Chicago, several of the harbors were going to be closed for several summers in order to build the kayaking venues. That's one of hundreds of several issues for Chicagos' planning. So boaters couldn't enjoy the lake for several summers for a two week party. Again, that must be some party.There is really something wrong when your city is turned upside down and every decision for nearly a decade is made with only one purpose, making the Olympics great. Yet, that's the Olympics process. Our mayor did little else in the last two and a half years and all he has to show for it is a trip to Copenhagen. The citizens of Rio are dancing in the streets now but once the full force of the preparedness of the Olympics takes hold we'll see how they feel. Posted by mike volpe at 7:30 AM
avatar
911Dispatcher

Number of posts : 469
Registration date : 2008-10-05

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Olympic Failure

Post by T on Sat Oct 03, 2009 7:37 pm

It's petty and pathetic on the part of President Obama's critics to use this issue, in any way, to damage his presidency.

I was under the impression that right-wing Conservatives condemned this sort of thing when it was done to President Bush.

I guess not so much...

T

Number of posts : 2684
Registration date : 2008-06-23

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Olympic Failure

Post by 911Dispatcher on Sat Oct 03, 2009 8:14 pm

Its not petty and pathetic. Its unrealistic and lacking in common sense and brains. I could come up with a lot more educated points of failure for Obama. Its the same as trashing Sarah Palin for having ovaries. Instead why not mention cash for clunkers, the AIG bailout?
avatar
911Dispatcher

Number of posts : 469
Registration date : 2008-10-05

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Olympic Failure

Post by Chuck on Mon Oct 05, 2009 6:56 am

Maybe Obama should have acted more like Bush and threatened economic sanctions, military action or tried other pressure tactics like telling the world leaders "If you're not with us, you're against us"....

Oh wait, that's why there is so much "anti American bias" in the first place....
avatar
Chuck

Number of posts : 73
Registration date : 2008-06-21

View user profile

Back to top Go down

Re: Olympic Failure

Post by Sponsored content


Sponsored content


Back to top Go down

View previous topic View next topic Back to top

- Similar topics

 
Permissions in this forum:
You cannot reply to topics in this forum