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U.S. Winter Bid for 2022 or 2026


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There was protest for the 2002 bid, so what? Who cares? If it does fly, in the end people (those that weren't protesting of course) would realize that it was all worth it. As long as it's done in an environmentally sound matter and doesn't cost too much, it's a much more sound investment than a temporary ramp.

Lots of people would care - me for one. I'm a games fan, but frankly, I'd find such a major environmental rape obscene and find it disturbing you're so blithe to write-off any such concerns in the name of "it'd be nice to go to such a new location". Such a plan would spark MAJOR green protests, and rightly so. I'm more than confident the IOC wouldn't touch such a plan with an 800m barge pole!

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Perhaps it does/ and perhaps it doesn't. Still I consider that less of a liability than Denver's utterly stupid move of 1976. And again, you'd be utterly stupid and naive to simply dismiss what Denver did. Most likely, you'll wake up with a Chicago 2016-style hangover.

Ya wanna play, testy. Yeah, let's go for it over the New Year! I am supercharged to deal with it!!

I'm not dismissing what Denver did. I'm just trying to put myself in the mindset of an IOC voter and deciding how much that means which I cast my vote. I still think you're over-selling how much 1972 is going to play a factor in a bid and vote for Denver 2026. Is it possible a few voters might be swayed by that? Absolutely. But there are probably a dozen other factors I believe they'll consider to be more important.

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As far as I'm concerned, Denver had their chance in 1976. They blew it. By all that is right and fair, somebody else should have a shot at it -- not some wishy, washy, namby-pamby town REGARDLESS of their physical facilities. MIGHT is NOT right.

As if these IOC votes are all about "right and fair." I suppose at least it's not FIFA.

Yes, the blew their opportunity back then. But that was a long time ago. They're looking at an Olympics that will take place half a century after those. 2 cities in the United States have hosted a Winter Olympics since 1976. 2 others (including Reno) were bidders and 1 got so far as to present themselves to the IOC. I know your line of thinking tends to be that the USOC should exhaust all other options before looking at Denver. But to equate the Denver of the 1970s with Denver of this decade solely on that basis I think is a little short-sighted. It's very possible some of those environmentalists that forced Denver to back out of 1976 will re-emerge and cause problems here. In which case, and I've said this before, I believe the IOC (not to mention the USOC before them) definitely will take notice.

That said, how many cities, U.S. or otherwise do you think need to get a shot before Denver is allowed back into the conversation. I don't think they're going to be so easily dismissed if they can put together a solid bid. That's still a very big IF at this point, but if the USOC is going to pursue a 2026 bid, I still believe Denver might offer them their best shot at winning. Again, that's IF Denver has what it takes to get their bid together in the first place.

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Denver's problem isn't just sour grapes over 1976. Denver has to convince IOC voters that the same thing won't happen today.

Not only is the environmental movement alive and well in CO. But it has been joined by a growing and powerful anti-government, anti-world Tea Party movement. CO continues to have a powerful ballot initiate system that voters are willing to use.

How do you convince the IOC voter that '76 won't happen again?

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Denver's problem isn't just sour grapes over 1976. Denver has to convince IOC voters that the same thing won't happen today.

Not only is the environmental movement alive and well in CO. But it has been joined by a growing and powerful anti-government, anti-world Tea Party movement. CO continues to have a powerful ballot initiate system that voters are willing to use.

How do you convince the IOC voter that '76 won't happen again?

ANd in an organization steeped in tradition and history, the past does mean something. Plus, take any body of 115 odd, disparate voters, estimating 5 or 6 voters who would want to put Denver in its place, isn't totally out of reach. That would be about 3-4% probability. And that would be enuf to scuttle any bid. So why even chance it? Why not go in with a "virgin" entry without any baggage? And if the USOC doesn't care that another $50 million will be thrown down the drain, or setting themselves up for another smackdown, then I guess...why should I worry?

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Denver's problem isn't just sour grapes over 1976. Denver has to convince IOC voters that the same thing won't happen today.

Not only is the environmental movement alive and well in CO. But it has been joined by a growing and powerful anti-government, anti-world Tea Party movement. CO continues to have a powerful ballot initiate system that voters are willing to use.

How do you convince the IOC voter that '76 won't happen again?

They have to have all sorts of funding guarantees upfront. That's how they do that. And I've argued before that may prove to be an impossible talk for the Denver folks which could scuttle the bid before they even start. So I agree entirely that the burden is on them to convince the IOC beyond a shadow of a doubt that they have the money and the support to last the 9 years from the submission deadline through the Games themselves. If they can't do that, then there's probably no bid in the first place for the reasons you stated. If they can and the USOC feels they're the best option, then they should bid (as opposed to letting some lesser bid flush that $50 million down the drain if they don't have as good a chance of winning.

As for the environmental factor, let's take a lesson from history rather than blindly trying to apply lessons from the 1970s to today. As I understand history, the original plans for Denver `76 were very ill-conceived. Their initial bid placed many of the venues closer to Denver, but they were in locations that either weren't well suited for international competition and/or were poorly designed to the point they impacted on local residents. That's where the uprising against the Olympics began. So then the plans changed to include Vail and Steamboat Springs, much better locations in terms of competition, but much further from Denver where the roads weren't suited to handle the type of volume the Olympics would bring. Beyond that, those ski resorts in Colorado were still relatively new at the time. The locals were concerned about the world descending upon the state of Colorado and their then largely unknown ski resorts. Well, that ship has definitely since sailed. Some of those who voted against the funding for the Olympics (including Dick Lamm who largely spearheaded the anti-Denver Olympics movement) have said they might have made a mistake and turning down taxpayer money would have been a benefit to them. And all of the development in Colorado which happened anyway in spite of the Olympics that many residents were against in the first place could have benefited from public funding.

Here's the bottom line IMO.. a Denver 2026 bid has a lot of hurdles to overcome. Any shortcoming or lack of support is going to get magnified because of their history. But IF they can put a coherent plan together (which they largely failed to do last time) and IF they can find avenues of support (which is far from impossible.. don't automatically equate the Colorado of the early 1970s with the Colorado of today because to do that is to fail to understand why the locals were upset in the first place), and IF they can show to the IOC that they have their affairs in order before they present themselves for bidding, then I don't think they will be as easily dismissed as you think. That's a lot of ifs there to deal with and it may turn out they don't have the goods, but it's not like Denver is the first Olympic hopeful to have to deal with environmental issues.

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Bid cities now must produce much more comprehensive guarantees than they used to back in the 80s, let alone the 60s or 70s.

The USOC, just like it did for 2016, will ensure that whichever city they put forward for whatever Games (2024 or 2026) have all guarantees in place. Therefore, the IOC will not be too worried with

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(continued)

with a city pulling out after being awarded the Games.

USOC will chose whatever city it feels can make the stronger case, keeping in mind that there is never a sure thing when it comes to bidding for the Games.

Should they assess that Denver is their best chance, I am sure some nice PR campaign could actually put a positive spin on the whole 1976 thing (e.g. "It's time for Denver to make things right" blablabla).

Anyway I don't see any of the three potential 2026 US candidates having a flawless bid (Salt Lake is still coming relatively soon after 2002, Denver has the 1976 thing and Reno, well sure it has Lake Tahoe, but is not particularly attractive).

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^That's the thing though, is the State of Colorado & the city of Denver more than willing to ensure those guarantees. And despite all the "other more important factors that the IOC will consider than Denver's diss", that still comes back to Dever's history. Bcuz how is Denver going to compete when all the other bidders that they're going to come up against that will already have all those too important fiscal guarantees all under wraps & taken care of from the get go.

And while Chicago 2016 did finally get those guarantees in place, they didn't do so until a mere few weeks before the final 2016 vote. I'm sure that didn't help the bid any either. If the USOC is getting smarter with time, then they'll make sure that those guarantees are in place BEFORE they even give the green light to any future candidate, & especially Denver.

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And while Chicago 2016 did finally get those guarantees in place, they didn't do so until a mere few weeks before the final 2016 vote. I'm sure that didn't help the bid any either. If the USOC is getting smarter with time, then they'll make sure that those guarantees are in place BEFORE they even give the green light to any future candidate, & especially Denver.

With all the US' fiscal problems and considerations, I don't know though that any state Legislatures will want to sign any of these almost carte-blanche guarantees 8-9 years in advance of the actual event. I mean those stupid IOC requirements almost wants to make a Tea Party-er out of me. Considering that in the years running up to the first Lake Placid Games of 1932, all the IOC demanded from the Lake Placid Committee then was only $600/year starting in 1929. So by the time the Games went off in Feb 4, 1932, the LP Committee had paid $600 x 4 to the IOC to host the Games. The LA 1932 Committee was assessed $1,500/year leading up to the actual Games in summer '32. (The above bits are from the November issue of the ISOH Journal which I received a few days ago.) You give them $600...now they want the moon.

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How does the USOC and Denver orgainizing committee guaratee that CO voters won't do something to muck the games?

I'm curious - honestly don't know here - what sort of guarantees did Chicago have? Given the state of government in the US, what counts as a guarantee anymore?

But getting back to Denver... even if you ignore the funding issue (maybe Bill Gates steps in and pledges his person fortune to back any expense) you still need massive involvement at all levels to have a successful games. How do you guarantee that?

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I think Chicago's 2016 "guarantees" were bascially a bunch of insurance policies. If I recall correctly, the State only guaranteed $500 million if there were any shortfalls.

I'd be curious, too, how any city in the U,S. would/could make such committments & be able to compete competively when all the other international governments just basically write out a blank check for the Games.

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^That's the thing though, is the State of Colorado & the city of Denver more than willing to ensure those guarantees. And despite all the "other more important factors that the IOC will consider than Denver's diss", that still comes back to Dever's history. Bcuz how is Denver going to compete when all the other bidders that they're going to come up against that will already have all those too important fiscal guarantees all under wraps & taken care of from the get go.

And while Chicago 2016 did finally get those guarantees in place, they didn't do so until a mere few weeks before the final 2016 vote. I'm sure that didn't help the bid any either. If the USOC is getting smarter with time, then they'll make sure that those guarantees are in place BEFORE they even give the green light to any future candidate, & especially Denver.

Exactly. We all know Denver's history. Because of that, they will face additional scrutiny that other bidders won't. But this isn't a case of "those who do not remember history are doomed to repeat it." There are lessons to be learned from Denver 1972, but when you understand then, you realize they don't necessarily apply the same way now as they did then. And again, part of the history is that Denver's 1976 plan was ill-conceived, and then they tried to change it, and that made it worse. So it's different now where issues of funding and support are much more likely to become apparent before it comes to the IOC vote, not come to a head after like it did last time.

How does the USOC and Denver orgainizing committee guaratee that CO voters won't do something to muck the games?

I'm curious - honestly don't know here - what sort of guarantees did Chicago have? Given the state of government in the US, what counts as a guarantee anymore?

But getting back to Denver... even if you ignore the funding issue (maybe Bill Gates steps in and pledges his person fortune to back any expense) you still need massive involvement at all levels to have a successful games. How do you guarantee that?

Like FYI said.. how does any American city guarantee that? I know Denver is under a different microscope than other U.S. cities, but didn't that same logic apply to New York and Chicago and to whatever future cities might be interested in hosting the Olympics? Why is Denver and Colorado and their voters different from other cities? That's the point I keep trying to make here.. just because something happened before in a particular city at a specific time doesn't mean that city is automatically a target for it to happen again and Denver is the only bidder we need to think about that with.

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As far as I'm concerned, Denver had their chance in 1976. They blew it. By all that is right and fair, somebody else should have a shot at it -- not some wishy, washy, namby-pamby town REGARDLESS of their physical facilities. MIGHT is NOT right.

Wimpiness isn't right either.

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^That's the thing though, is the State of Colorado & the city of Denver more than willing to ensure those guarantees. And despite all the "other more important factors that the IOC will consider than Denver's diss", that still comes back to Dever's history. Bcuz how is Denver going to compete when all the other bidders that they're going to come up against that will already have all those too important fiscal guarantees all under wraps & taken care of from the get go.

And while Chicago 2016 did finally get those guarantees in place, they didn't do so until a mere few weeks before the final 2016 vote. I'm sure that didn't help the bid any either. If the USOC is getting smarter with time, then they'll make sure that those guarantees are in place BEFORE they even give the green light to any future candidate, & especially Denver.

I think Chicago's 2016 "guarantees" were bascially a bunch of insurance policies. If I recall correctly, the State only guaranteed $500 million if there were any shortfalls.

I'd be curious, too, how any city in the U,S. would/could make such committments & be able to compete competively when all the other international governments just basically write out a blank check for the Games.

I think that is the thing with the IOC and the United States. The USA will never, ever give the kind of comprehensive guarantees that any other country will. It is just not in their nature or the nature of politics in the USA. I think in American history there has been two times when the country was ever truly united, in lock-step with their government. It sure as hell won't happen for the Olympics.

But this is a fact the IOC has had to deal with before, and NYC and Chicago both made it to the vote. If the USOC, the bidding committee and the 3 levels of government offer up a plan, through public, private or insurance money that the games will go off, everything will be covered and the contract will be fulfilled there are 3 very solid reasons to say that is enough and move forward.

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In a very tight race, all you need is a handful, or less, of members who could use that against them. TBH, I think that it's kind of a blind assessment to say that it's not going to matter to anyone on the voting panel, that they'll have 'other important factors to consider'.

This is the same IOC that scuffled Chicago's 2016 bid due to internal conflicts with the USOC. The same IOC that shunned Sion 2006 bcuz a Swiss IOC member blew the whistle on the SLC bribery scandel. The IOC, like anyone else, always have hidden agendas.

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In a very tight race, all you need is a handful, or less, of members who could use that against them. TBH, I think that it's kind of a blind assessment to say that it's not going to matter to anyone on the voting panel, that they'll have 'other important factors to consider'.

This is the same IOC that scuffled Chicago's 2016 bid due to internal conflicts with the USOC. The same IOC that shunned Sion 2006 bcuz a Swiss IOC member blew the whistle on the SLC bribery scandel. The IOC, like anyone else, always have hidden agendas.

It's plain naivete and stupidity to dismiss it. And the USOC would only have itself to blame for presenting a city with a subliminal "L-O-S-E-R" written all over it. I predict Denver would have to lose at least one cycle of voting before it redeems itself in the eyes of the USOC.

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Why is Denver and Colorado and their voters different from other cities? That's the point I keep trying to make here.. just because something happened before in a particular city at a specific time doesn't mean that city is automatically a target for it to happen again and Denver is the only bidder we need to think about that with.

Yes, this is a problem every US city faces. Watching the US Congress over the past month, and the games they are going to play over the next few months, it's tough to make a case for any US city.

But it is worse in Denver for two reasons. First, they have a history. Whether it is fair or not doesn't matter. The fact that CO voters jilted the IOC 40 years ago does mean they face extra scruitney. Then their is the very real issue that the political process is different in CO than in NY or IL. They not only have a very powerful ballot initiative in CO, they voters in CO have shown they are willing to use that process to buck they system. They were willing to do use the process in the 70's to skuttle the Olympics, they just used it to legalized weed.

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