Saturday, October 3, 2009

Olympic Bid Dud

I know, I'm a little late to the party writing about Rio winning the 2016 Olympics, but it isn't for lack of interest. Not at all - rather, I have been amused by some stories I have seen on the IOC decision. To say it took some people by surprise (that is, the Obamas, Oprah, and the Daley Machine) is probably the understatement of the decade.

As to the actual decision to have the 2016 games in Rio de Janeiro,I say Good for them. Brazil has worked very hard as a nation to achieve energy independence, no small feat, among other advances. And the Olympics have never been held in South American before, so this is historic.

What else was historic was for a US President to go lobby to get the Olympics. And that turned out to be a big waste of his time and our money. We were paying not just for the President to take Air Force One, but his wife to take Air Force Two, with Oprah in tow, all on a failed mission. Perhaps they though the new Olympic Rings were going to look like this if they did:

Ahem. Hey, you know you wouldn't have been surprised by that, and neither would I.

Let's just look at the cost of this little misadventure. You may not be aware that when the President travels, it isn't JUST Air Force One that goes places. Nope. It also involves C-17s carrying limos, equipment, staff, all of that. It is a VERY expensive enterprise:
President Barack Obama's failed bid to bring the 2016 Olympic Games to Chicago cost more than a bruised ego.

Taxpayers shelled out probably $1 million or more for the president, his wife and others to fly to Copenhagen and back to woo members of the International Olympic Committee.

A 2006 congressional study pegged the cost of flying Air Force One at $56,518 an hour. The Pentagon recently said it cost $100,219 an hour to fly the huge, reconfigured Boeing 747 without Obama aboard. The Pentagon estimate included more costs for support needs, such as maintenance.

At those rates, the president's 14-hour trip to Copenhagen and back cost about $790,000 to $1.4 million.

However, presidential travel requires additional spending, especially for security personnel and equipment. Also, first lady Michelle Obama and some administration officials traveled to Copenhagen at public expense ahead of the president.

Uh, yeah. In other words, a gazillion dollars.

Second while there, Obama managed to fit in a BRIEF meeting with General McChrystal, he who has been charged with oversight of Afghanistan:
The Copenhagen trip was not devoted entirely to the Olympics bid. Obama spent 25 minutes conferring with Army Gen. Stanley McChrystal, his top Afghan war commander. McChrystal had been in London for a speech, and he made the relatively short trip to Denmark to meet with Obama.

WOW - 25 whole minutes?!?! Holy schmoley, where DID he find the time?!?! Freakin' spare me. He still hasn't made up his mind what the hell he is going to do in Afghanistan. Meanwhile, our soldiers continue to die there, 5 of them today, while Obama hems and haws on what to do.

Way to get your priorities in order, President Obama.

And finally, a point made by Larry Johnson in his post, "Barack Obama, Surrender Monkey?" That is this: you do NOT send someone like the president into a situation expending his credibility capital when you do not know for certain what the outcome will be. It is, in Larry's words, "clueless and feckless." Amen, brother. You got that right. But clueless they are.

As an aside, I might add so is Michelle. This is in the "You Gotta Be Frikkin Kidding Me" camp. Michelle, in her plea to the IOC, spoke of her youth, watching the Olympics with her dad, sitting on his lap as they watched all of these great athletes win their gold medals. Okay, nothing wrong with that. Until she included Carl Lewis. Just think about that for a moment. That would have made her 20, hardly a little girl. Perhaps the IOC is better at math than she gave them credit for being. Just a thought.

And now, in recognition of Rio de Janeiro winning the 2016 Olympics, I leave you with this:

And don't blame me when it gets stuck in your head for days!


Mary Ellen said...

Man...just think of what that money could have been used for instead of that wasted trip. They should make Oprah pay for it.

Check out the new post I put up...short and sweet, but says it all. :-)

Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy said...

ROTFLMAO - Mary Ellen, that is PERFECT!!!!! I love it!! You are freakin' hilarious! Ahahahahaha!!

No kidding - did they charge Oprah fare? Aren't they SUPPOSED to do that when someone travels with them? Oh wait - is it only family that's supposed to travel with them, or is that just for Congresspeople? But I digress...

Heck yeah - she has a good bit of money - why are WE paying for HER to go to Copenhagen?? Ridiculous.

So - what did the local paper say abt it this morning? I saw a photo of a person with a sign, an African American, saying money for schools, not the Olympics. I guess she must be racist!!! Just like the IOC!!! Ahem.

Thanks for the laugh - that is great!

TypeWriter said...

Great post. Arses, the lot of 'em.
Nice post on Asia as well. Rev. did you see this and what the hay?

"US storms troops into the Philippines
By Al Labita

MANILA - The arrival of about 3,000 US Marines in the Philippines next week for training and humanitarian missions in the wake of recent floods has some Filipino officials wary that the soldiers could be diverted to war-torn Sulu island, where Islamic extremists recently killed two US soldiers. The scheduled deployment represents five times the number of US troops currently stationed in the Philippines."

Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy said...

Hey, Typewriter -

Indeed. You know I couldn't agree more.

And no, I hadn't seen that article. That is a bit odd - humanitarian aid AND training? After they just had this horrendous typhoon? Unless they mean the aid to BE the training. But yeah - pretty telling abt the concerns they have that the Marines will take off for Sulu. Thanks for the link!

nazareth priest said...

You know what?...this whole thing stinks to high heaven.
Celebrity instead of substance.
Image instead of integrity.
Gimme a break.
Great post!

Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy said...

Thanks, Nazareth Priest! I appreciate that, and your coming by!

You are so right - this whole presidency has noting to do with substance. The candidate who DID have substance was treated as a liar, as a lightweight on experience, and with sexism.

So instead, we have these folks. A man who claimed the March on Selma was what inspired his parents to have him - because they apparently created real time travel, and his wife, who claims she was sitting on her daddy's lap at 20, and what, 6 ft tall or so?

Thank heavens SOME people are seeing through them.

If the majority of people in Chicago had wanted these Olympics, and would have really been the ones to benefit from HAVING the Olympics, their loss would have not been our loss. But that wasn't the case, as I'm sure you already know.

And, in that case, we could blame the Obamas and Oprah for screwing up their chances, which it seems, they would have done anyway with their arrogance and hubris.

This is what I have written abt them for some time, like when they gave PM Brown a collection of dvds to a man who is legally blind, and not in a UK format, and his kids a couple of helicopters from the WH Gift Shop when the Browns brought very thoughtful, considerate, HISTORICAL gifts - they have no sense of decorum. None. They and their frat boy speechwriter have NO idea of "the way things are done." They just expect everyone to bow down in awe of them Blech.

Hillary does, though, and you can see the respect she generates when she is in a room.

Sorry - long winded response to your message! :-)