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  • Olympics???

    I was really glad to see Canada poll its athletes out of the Olympics but it got me wondering just how relevant they are any more. I have really lost interest really ever since the Atlanta games when they started to let Pros into the games. As a highlight for an amateur sport, it no longer can be the pinnacle. Yes there are some amateur sports that this is the highlight but if the world spent as much money on each individual sport as they do to put on the commercial spectacle we see now would we not be better off>
    Jerome
    Canada's South Coast

    Port Colborne On.
    Every loaf of bread is a tragic tale of grains that could've become whiskey.......but didn't....
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  • #2

    Re: Olympics???

    The Olympics,to me, is the chance to watch the sports that we don't typically get to see on a daily basis (i.e. not hockey, basketball, baseball, etc.). I wait for it to come so that I can watch track and field, diving, gymnastics, volleyball, archery, fencing, etc (the list goes on). Regarding letting pro athletes into the games: I'm born in the 90's so I may not have much of an opinion on this. But I can tell you that part of the reason I don't watch Olympics basketball is because I know it's got the same players as the NBA, which I can just watch during the regular season and is nothing special.

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    • #3

      Re: Olympics???

      Full Disclosure: I am not any sort of sports fan but get some interest every now and then in some singular special event. Like watching some winter Olympic sports if a Canadian is doing well but that is it in total.
      I tend to agree with Jerome about the money being better spent elsewhere such as ensuring all kids get to play sports and off the couch. Talk about supporting 1%'ers and this is in an occupation that contributes darn little to anything important.
      billh

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      • #4

        Re: Olympics???

        The Olympics are postponed until 2021
        Bob just past Ayr likes this.

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        • #5

          Re: Olympics???

          The Olympic movement was disgraced under the watch of the IOC.

          I still enjoy watching the events, though. And I'm glad they pushed it back a year this time, too.

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          • #6

            Re: Olympics???

            This time they should award the medals to the countries who best deal with the coronavirus outbreak.
            iamtooler and beachburl like this.
            Happiness is a new blade!

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            • #7

              Re: Olympics???

              Some people are sports fanatics, not me. I used to enjoy them years ago, but my enjoyment has been clouded by the "big business" approach, by the drug use for self improvement and to me it seems to be an event for professional athletes, paid for in at least some part by taxpayers. There also seems to be, although I think there always has been a lot of politics and personal agendas aired lately, especially at the awards podium.

              If I happen to see an event on the TV catches my fancy I'll watch it, but I sure don't schedule it.

              To those who enjoy it .... ok, that's fine. There are obviously plenty of you out there as the tickets seem to sell well enough. I think we could spend the taxpayer portion of the money on more important things for a while.

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              • #8

                Re: Olympics???

                In this age, I think the Olympics has about as much relevance as the Worlds Fair...
                I may watch the opening or closing but the events themselves are just too money driven.
                These days, you can watch TV and internet broadcasts of anything from hockey and football to poker and video games.
                I agree that the government money would be better spent on programs for kids.
                Mike in Waubaushene likes this.

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                • #9

                  Re: Olympics???

                  As bloodthirsty as television networks are, they will only broadcast what the statistics show what people want to watch. Advertising dollars only go to programming that’s got lots of numbers. A dart match won’t compete with a 100 meter dash. It’s just the way of the world. National pride, I guess. It nots about individual athletes anymore. It’s nations thumping their chests.

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                  • #10

                    Re: Olympics???

                    The first Olympics I remember were 1972 in Munich. I turned 11 that summer and my parents and aunt emigrated from Munich in the 50s. So it really meant something for us all. Then Montreal of course was big. 1980 Moscow started the politics with US and others boycotting. My view is that one of the big achievement of the Olympics was bringing the whole world together. That was before the globalization and the monetization of so many sports. There are so many international events now and so much money that somehow the Olympic moment has lots its reason for being. There nothing WOW about it anymore. And.. like any large organization, I think a foul culture has taken hold, there is little opportunity for renewal within most sports bodies since they are typically government sanctioned monopolies.

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                    • #11

                      Re: Olympics???

                      Just one word about the tv broadcasts, Mike, respectfully, I don't think it's that simple.

                      Yes, there is a way in which the networks simply respond to demand.

                      But I think it's also clear that they have some power to shape demand.

                      There's a reason why corporations spend billions on marketing: because it works. Run the right marketing campaign, create the right buzz, and suddenly all the people are racing out to the stores holding their money out to fill some need they previously didn't know they had!

                      In the same way, I think the networks build up some sports and not others.

                      They build up beach volleyball, for example, because they know it will give them an opportunity to focus the camera on fit women in tiny outfits, which in turn will get them more advertising revenue. I think they invest so much in women's tennis for similar reasons.

                      On the other hand, look at a sport like fencing. Mrs.callee and I took a fencing class once, and I tell you, that is one exciting sport! I mean, you are literally sword fighting, how can It get any better than that? There's a reason why so many Hollywood movies have sword fights - because people love to watch them! I mean, just look at this pic below: these guys are so fast an agile, they are literally bending the tips of their foils like a whip to evade the other's defences and score a point:

                      Click image for larger version

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                      There's no reason why fencing couldn't be a monster sport. Yet when's the last time you saw sexed up buzz being generated for it the way you see for something like tennis? It's all the buzz of the marketing machine, not the inherent excitement of the sport itself. I mean, these fences are twenty times the athlete any golfer or baseball player will ever be, and they move twenty times as fast. And did I mention they are swinging swords??

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                      • #12

                        Re: Olympics???

                        I was a javelin catcher in high school. People would get real excited and pay big money to see that sport revived. No one stays on top of that heap very long.
                        Kayak Jim and Carlosinthesticks like this.

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                        • #13

                          Re: Olympics???

                          I just googled to see what the Olympic spending in Canada. Sit down for this. The year 2017 was the latest data and we Canadians spent an astronomical sum of $217 per household. As a retired coach I spent out of pocket thousands each year with no compensation. I love to watch world class athletes no matter the sport. The skill and beauty of these athletes is amazing.
                          www.grandpastreasureschest.com

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                          • #14

                            Re: Olympics???

                            Not to get on a rant, Larry, but my first reaction to that $217 figure is pretty negative.

                            I mean, that's a lot of money per person, and in total.

                            And I know it's just a part of it too. There happens to be a strong skiing cohort in our small town right now. Two of our young people are legitimate medal contenders, while several others are strong prospects. I know from talking to their fathers that, despite government support and private sponsorship, they are still spending several thousand per month! It's astonishing to me the amount of money that these high calibre top tier sports require.

                            But what does all that money get us? For sure, the feeling of pride, accomplishment - not to mention a bit of fame - will be quite real for the individual athlete, but what about the rest of us? What are the tax payers getting for all that money?

                            National pride? Maybe, but I'm not sure that's healthy. I think the world would probably be a better place over all if we ditched the idea that this nation/people group over here was somehow superior to that nation/people group over there just because some of us can run faster, jump higher, or throw something farther. Besides, even if some other canuck is the best in the world at whatever, why should that personally give me pride? Just because I'm a canuck too doesn't mean his accomplishment is somehow a little bit mine too. I mean, I can admire Leo's wood turning, but I don't get to claim it as my own and feel a sense of personal accomplishment over it just because Leo and I are both fellow forum members!

                            So if not pride, than what? The emotion and excitement of the moment? I'll admit watching it can be exciting. I'm a bandwagoner who has tuned in for many a second-half-of-the-gold-medal-hockey-game, and I'll agree, it's a totally exciting viewing experience. You really do get caught up in the moment. But on the other hand, I've gotten the same entertainment experience from many a good tv show or movie, and Netflix costs the taxpayer an awful lot less than $217 per year!

                            So what are we getting for all that money then? Maybe one of you has a better answer, but I really can't think of one.

                            ​​​​​​By promoting sport, does it encourage other people to be active and get healthy (thereby reducing the expensive burden on our healthcare system)? Maybe, that strikes me as a decent start at an answer. But on the other hand, kids kept in great shape playing hours or ice pond hockey or sandlot baseball long before we were spending $217 per person on Olympic athletics, so we're still left with the why now question.

                            I wonder if excellence in top tier sports hasn't just been kinda accepted as a self-evident good, without any real critical scrutiny. I suspect if you pushed a sports advocate long enough and hard enough on why the expense is justified, they'd eventually run out of answers and sputter "just because! Everyone knows it!".

                            In contrast, the CBC - which arguably fills a much more important role for Canadians - gets a measly $34 per person per year, and we scrutinize that so thoroughly, that it's funding levels are currently in the campaign platforms of most the leadership candidates of the conservative party.

                            I dont mind that scrutiny. $34 per person per year should be both scrutinize and justified. But if that's true, then how much more so do those getting $217 owe us some answers?
                            Last edited by callee; 03-25-2020, 08:58 AM.

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                            • #15

                              Re: Olympics???

                              Originally posted by callee View Post
                              National pride? Maybe, but I'm not sure that's healthy. I think the world would probably be a better place over all if we ditched the idea that this nation/people group over here was somehow superior to that nation/people group over there just because some of us can run faster, jump higher, or throw something farther.
                              First of all,

                              I agree with everything Ryan said except the "bandwagon" part. That particular response doesn't hit me very often.

                              Second, I'm not great with words, but I'll try to get my thoughts across ...

                              I quoted what I did because one of the things that has crossed my mind more and more often over the last few years is this business of "nationalism" vs "globalism". That's how I'd describe it. The population of this planet is growing exponentially, at least from the numbers I find on the web, and yet there seems to be more and more of this "them vs us" out there. When I hear President O.H.A. saying things like "the Chinese virus", it makes my blood run thin. "In my opinion" it's not going to be too many more years before the population density on this planet forces us to find ways to really help other nations get up to our level of comfort and health and wealth instead of competing with everyone else, and I guess that's the globalism that I would like us to aim for as opposed to the economic globalism that is in place now and that seems to scare a lot of people. I have pride in Canada and I am happy that I am Canadian, but I think that being territory of Canada within a world association will soon be a reality that we will have to come to terms with so maybe we should be thinking about it now and be in the lead when creating that framework.

                              As for the money .... I had no idea that I was spending two weeks+ worth of groceries for my wife and I to support the Olympics. That's also one season worth of trail passes for my sled, or two years worth of propane for my camping trailer, and yet I am not given a choice as to whether or not I spend it. Thank you for educating me Larry. I now am firmly against us spending that money. This is an event for elites and I have a feeling it's attended by people who have a lot more disposable income that most of us do, or by people who really sacrifice to get there.

                              As always .... an opinion.

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