Olympic Trivia

To distract you from your mounting hopes for national glory in the women’s ten-meter air rifle competition, and as you check your wallet to make sure you’ve got your $2,885 cheap-seats ticket to the Opening Ceremony, here’s a fun diversion: What host nation-state introduced the Olympic torch relay, the thrills and wonders of which have been the object of so much MSM breathlessness in recent days?

Answer:

Beyond Orwell

TCT‘s editor is one of those lefties who loves him some Orwell.  But, seriously, that dude would only be able to stammer these days.

Get this:

The maker of Agent Orange and one-time promoter of DBCP of Bhopal fame, presently the world’s second largest chemical corporation, is painting itself green because some of its products have been used to build the infrastructure for the 2012 Olympics!

Bazinga, Eric Blair!

Brand Exclusion Zone

olydollars The Olympic Games promote nationalism and corporate capitalism. As such, they are squarely on the TCT hate list.

And dig this. According to Advertising Age, the upcoming London version of the Olympics will feature a 35-day “brand exclusion zone” around all its venues:

To protect sponsors, a 35-day, one-kilometer Brand Exclusion Zone will be enforced around all Olympic venues, inside which no brands that compete with official sponsor brands can advertise. It’s not just ads — spectators wearing competitor-branded clothing, or consuming unofficial food or drink choices, or even trying to pay with the wrong credit card, will not be welcome. For road events such as the marathon and some of the cycling, the exclusion zone extends to two meters on either side of the track.

The U.K. passed new legislation in 2006, giving the Olympics and their sponsors an extra level of protection beyond existing copyright and contract law. The biggest change is the clampdown on “association,” so that only sponsors can use the words “games,” “2012,” “twentytwelve” or “two thousand and twelve.”

Even social media — which most brands have long since given up trying to police — is not free from Olympic control. Twitter shut down the account of satirical activist group Space Hijackers after [the London Olympics Organizing Committee] complained about the use of its logo (while also claiming it did not mind the content).

The enforcement of such rules? A “700,000-strong volunteer corps” will be out reporting violations.

A Decent Proposal: No More Olympics

Seems the “Bird’s Nest” stadium, built in Beijing for last summer’s Olympics, is now unused and will be knocked down and replaced with — of course — a new shopping mall.  Wikipedia cites sources saying China spent $423 million building this monstrosity, and that that staggering figure is a mere “one-tenth the cost that it would have cost to build the Bird’s Nest in the West.”

And what do the people of China and the world get in exchange for tolerating the construction of these $4 billion disposable boondoggles?  The usual Olympics agenda — another dose of extreme distraction, commercialism, and nationalism.

The world can hardly tolerate much more of those increasingly dangerous things, to say nothing of the colossal ecological wastefulness of things like building more Bird’s Nests and flying the world’s game-players and upscale spectators into thoroughly pointless, quickly forgotten quadrennial crypto-fascist schlockfests.

Let’s stop this madness, shall we?