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IOC Takes Blame!


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Dear IOC

So you have final taken blame for the situation of 2022. What took you guys so long? Was it the demands the IOC places on the cities that bid for the games, is it that all of you wish to be wine and dine and treated like high class diplomats? Is it that all of you have lost touch with the real world? I hope that Agenda 2020 will actually mean something. By the way please don’t count on the United States to bail you out like we did in 1984. We rather watch College football or the NFL or NASCAR.

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I don't think they really did take blame though.

They basically said they failed to communicate the financial picture accurately -- in other words, all these worries about expense are just a big misunderstanding perpetrated by those pesky external bid advisors.

The IOC did NOT say, "we failed to sufficiently consider the well-being of the host city. We failed to pursue sustainable, responsible planning and favored lavish extravagance. We glorified ourselves rather than seeking ways to improve the lives of others. We realize we need to reimagine the Games in a way that provides more long-term benefit and minimizes wasteful spending for the hosts."

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They basically said they failed to communicate the financial picture accurately -- in other words, all these worries about expense are just a big misunderstanding perpetrated by those pesky external bid advisors.

I think they are actually trying to say -in coded words- that Sochi was an anomaly, and that places like Oslo should consider the Vancouver games as the financial model to follow. The IOC does not require 50 billion in expenditures from even the summer games hosts.

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the buck stops at the IOC they pick the cities that will host the games. As for Vancouver if you believe they broke even wait until the real story comes out say in 10 years. Calgray lost money. Don't count on the USA to bail you out this time! Maybe this could lead to one site for the Winter Games. Just watch for the YOG to vanish. because again cost!

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the buck stops at the IOC they pick the cities that will host the games. As for Vancouver if you believe they broke even wait until the real story comes out say in 10 years. Calgray lost money. Don't count on the USA to bail you out this time! Maybe this could lead to one site for the Winter Games. Just watch for the YOG to vanish. because again cost!

If you count all of the costs to the city and local businesses, its almost certain that every Olympics has lost its host money. But there is a clear difference between London, Vancouver, Los Angeles etc. and the legacies of Sochi, Beijing, Athens, Montreal, etc.

What the IOC needs to communicate is that there are three types of hosts: first world cities with the capability to host affordably (IE Oslo and Paris), new frontier cities that would have to invest heavily in infrastructure (IE Rio and Athens) and wealthy countries that want to spend for prestige (IE Sochi and Beijing.) Of course first world cities CAN overspend (hello Montreal) but those cities with most of the infrastructure already in place don't really need to waste more than a few billion USD.

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As if "a few billion" is chicken feed....

The thing about Sochi is that it made everyone stop and take stock of what the Games actually are. Suddenly not only Sochi's budget, but ALL Olympic budgets are under scrutiny. Everyone asks, "Is it worth it?" Even if you can match Vancouver's expenditures, is it worth it? Prior to Sochi, most countries would've just blithely assumed the answer was "yes." Now people are much more skeptical and everything is examined under a harsher light.

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As if "a few billion" is chicken feed....

The thing about Sochi is that it made everyone stop and take stock of what the Games actually are. Suddenly not only Sochi's budget, but ALL Olympic budgets are under scrutiny. Everyone asks, "Is it worth it?" Even if you can match Vancouver's expenditures, is it worth it? Prior to Sochi, most countries would've just blithely assumed the answer was "yes." Now people are much more skeptical and everything is examined under a harsher light.

There's been huge skepticism of every Olympics and the spending involved.

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I'd go a step further and say it's not just spending on the Olympics but governments overspending on taxpayer money in general. If the EU elections are any indication, there's a backlash against excessive spending. It's not that people are against the idea of the Olympics, they just don't want the government spending a large chunk of cash to do it. I don't think you can really compare the lead up to Lillehammer in 1994 with what's going on with the 2022 race right now. You're seeing the public go to the polls and say enough is enough as what's happened in Munich, Davos, and Krakow. The Oslo referendum did pass but barely while polls show more than 50 percent of the public does not want the government fund the IOC's party. Unless there's a dramatic turnaround between now and the next couple of months, I'd find it very hard to see the Norwegian government giving the green light to fund an Oslo bid when so much of the public is against the bid. It would amount to political suicide as I'm sure you'd see a number of those politicians voted out of office.

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If the EU elections are any indication, there's a backlash against excessive spending.

Sorry I don't see that at all. If anything, there is a backlash against austerity that punishes ordinary people for the recklessness of capitalism running rampant. We want more spending on the things that matter.

Rightly or wrongly, the IOC along with FIFA (look at protests in Brazil) is associated with corporate greed, excessive corporate power and mega projects which aren't seen as doing anything for ordinary people. And so the Olympic brand suffers.

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  • 2 weeks later...

The IOC clearly needs to become a more democratic and "honest" organization, and thinking a few more steps ahead. Of course, Europe has had a predominance of Olympics up until recent times, so it's not bad that cities in other parts of the world bids for and hosts the Olympics, even though this means awarding the Games to countries that are still in developing and to countries that are, well, "democratic", to say it in a more gentle way. However, the Olympics will return to more classical European hosts soon - I hope in Oslo 2022 - and if the IOC doesn't want to end up needing to award the Olympics to a bit unreliable hosts (like Rio, hope it turns out well though) or another "democratic" country (Kazakhstan, China etc.) every time, they need to focus more on cost - and also on they're own "glam factor". The image people have of sports aren't IOC members eating canapés and drinking champagne, and while that (hopefully) isn't what they do all the time, the press gives us that image. However, I do believe the "Agenda 2020" to be a step in the right direction. Let's just hope it doesn't turn out changing nothing...

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