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The Capitalist Olympics Summary: What We Need Is a Big Enemy...(Celebration Dance Included)

I'll admit it, I'm a homer for America.  If that makes me insensitive, less likely to have global impact, etc. - whatever.

I like living in America, where people have the freedom to say what they want and the free market has the freedom to absolutely crush them for it.  Seems like a nice balance of power.

And when it comes to the Olympics, I like America to have a big enemy out there to think about when it comes to medal count.  The first Olympics I remember being a bit aware of as a very young kid was the 1976 games in Montreal, which I heard Quebec just got done paying off the debt for (let that be an economics lesson of sorts for those who want to host the games - you take the expense, the IOC takes the cash).

In 1976, we had a big enemy - the USSR - and it was head to head time in Montreal.  It was pure good guys vs bad guys.  And we got crushed, by both the USSR and East Germany as well (see the medal count here).  Sure they were raising test tube babies to get that done, but we had overbearing suburban sports parents, right?  The 1980 and 1984 games featured dueling boycotts, and by the time we went head to head again in 1988, it was more of the same.  We got served.

But, the end was near for the USSR as we knew it, which was the real victory we needed.  We pretty much ruled the medal count at the Olympics until China hosted in 2008, with the People's Republic (China, not California) winning the overall gold medal count and the USA winning the total medal count.  That made it more interesting.

Translation - you need big enemy for the Olympic games to be really interesting - just like work.  That, or more athletes who don't have a country coming to the games and doing funky dances in the Opening Ceremonies (see photo here).  

So China's the big enemy now, certainly from an economic standpoint.  I've got a question for China - how's 2nd place taste?

We won the medal count in both golds and overall medals in London.  The picture below represents the dance it made me feel like doing.  Yes - dressed as George Washington with great Stars and Stripes boxers (email subscribers click through for the animated gif of the dance... h/t to a site called "Merica for the gif)

Go.  U...S...A

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Comments

Tony Pearce

Well, on a medals v population ratio, I think you will find that both the US and China came a distant second to little old GB.

65 medals from a population of under 70 million isn't bad going in my humble opinion!

Team GB...Team GB..!!

Shad

I have to apply for a permit to lead a protest. "Where we can say what we want and be free'? Free to do what? The police rolled the occupy protestors out with night sticks. The people on bottom are pinned down by debt and fear, entertained, distracted and confused to the point of delusion. We're taxed and exploited until our backs break. We choose between two parties that seem to be different on the surface, but are exactly common on the two issues that have never changed, militaristic foreign policy for expansion of profit and a fractional reserve banking system which lends un-backed money in the names of our great-great grand children.

ML

Well said Shad! I can't agree with you more!

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