Is anyone excited about the Olympics?

The Olympic Games must be due to start soon, there’s been quite a lot fuss made about them by some media. Is anyone excited yet?

I enjoy following some sports in the Olympics, at least I have in the past. But I have never been a fan of marathon build-ups. I don’t bother watching opening ceremonies – I’ve seen bits of them but have never made an effort to watch through one, they do nothing for me.

I’m sure I’ll keep an eye on things like athletics, rowing, yachting, sevens, golf and maybe a few more when they actually get under way.

But in many ways the Olympics seem to have become dominated by negatives:

  • Drugs
  • Too big
  • Too commercial
  • Too many sports
  • Abuse of the Olympic spirit by self interested officials and corruption
  • Drugs

RNZ asks: Have the Olympics lost their way?

Once a celebration of sporting values with a focus on national pride and personal achievement, critics suggest the Games have been captured by commercial imperatives and tainted by corruption – further underlined by the revelations of Russia’s state sponsored doping programme.

The 1984 Los Angeles Olympics have a lot to answer for in the mind of a leading Olympic academic, professor Ian Culpan, who is head of the Olympic Studies Academy at the University of Canterbury.

They were the first Olympic Games to operate under a commercial model and became the spectacle that people expect today.

Commercialism, Los Angeless, USA, no surprise.

Do people actually expect a commerce driven ‘spectacle’, or is it foisted on us?

Navigating the modern Olympic field you have to try and dodge a barrage of commercial javelins, discuses and hammers, surrounded by a swirl of sponsors.

However, Professor Culpan said that did not mean the Olympics remained true to the Olympic movement.

‘Where we lose the relevance is [in] the philosophy of the Games [and it is] probably the IOC’s best kept secret, you know, balanced development in your life, joy of effort, athletes being role models and observing universal ethics but in the last 20 years the IOC has hardly ever talked about that,” said Culpan.

“So what I am saying is that Christmas is supposed to be a celebration of the birth of Christ. The Olympic Games are supposed to be a celebration of the philosophy of Olympism but both have lost their way.”

Both have lost their way in  a maze of commercialism. The main aim of both Christmas and the Olympics seems to be a world record in spending – much of it on unnecessary crap.

He believes the Olympics are now at a tipping point.

He said there were questions over the financial and social sustainability of the Games but also a disconnect existed between high performance sport and the public.

“The divide is really created by high performance sport being captured by the political economy. Athletes are now bought and sold as commodities. They’re traded on the open market and with that comes the notion of money and reward for good performances and with that comes the temptation to gain unfair advantage.”

Brazil seems to have struggled with the financial burden of hosting this year’s Olympics. In 2020 they will be held in Toky0 – back to the venue that I first remember following the Olympics in 1964.

The theory is that winning Olympic medals is good for national identity and inspires people to become active although the head of High Performance Sport New Zealand, Alex Bauman, concedes there is no evidence of that being the case.

The best we can hope for in New Zealand is to be a creditable small player, in some sports.

Rebuilding the Olympics’ tarnished image will be a major exercise for the IOC in Rio and while Rio will undoubtedly put on a spectacular show the true test for these Games will be whether the label of the greatest sporting show on Earth is still valid or whether they have simply become a five ring circus.

I remember the circus as down to earth, rough and ready exotic entertainment. The Olympics are nothing like that.

They are more like a giant promotion for a global shopping mall.

The athletes are little more than pawns in the play for power and market share.

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37 Comments

  1. Nelly Smickers

     /  28th July 2016

    Wayne reckins there’ll be *a lot of people in Rio* excited about the Olympics …..XD

    http://www.liveleak.com/view?i=380_1456933847

    Reply
    • Corky

       /  28th July 2016

      Pity this didn’t happen in Texas. Draw,aim and lead.

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  28th July 2016

        I understand some of them are doing so much business they even have their own eftpos machines. :/

        Reply
  2. Blazer

     /  28th July 2016

    seems like the thieves and scoundrels in Rio are excited,and all the borderline athletes demanding to go to the party.

    Reply
  3. Gezza

     /  28th July 2016

    >i>Is anyone excited about the Olympics?

    Yup. I am. 😎
    http://soundbible.com/1859-Pissed-Off-Duck.html

    Reply
    • Nelly Smickers

       /  28th July 2016

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  28th July 2016

        Poor Wayne. Shot himself in the feet again I see. S’pose he’s waiting for the air ambo, as usual, while his mates are somewhere out of shot making the usual really smoky fire out of green foliage to show the pilot where to land. :/

        Reply
  4. Pete Kane

     /  28th July 2016

    I offered to hobble over to airport and head up to give him lessons anytime.

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  28th July 2016

      Wayne’s texted me to say that’d be great Pete. He says he should be easy for you to recognise …

      Reply
      • Nelly Smickers

         /  28th July 2016

        Yup, that’s him ❤

        Wayne decided to pull out of the *Rio Paralympics Shooting Team*…..we were both concerned about the Zika virus o_O

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  28th July 2016

          Concened that he wouldn’t catch it ?

          Reply
          • Nelly Smickers

             /  28th July 2016

            Even *more* concerned about him being caught having sex with a mosquito :/

            Reply
          • Gezza

             /  28th July 2016

            Concened?

            Is that a proper word? o_O

            Reply
            • Nelly Smickers

               /  28th July 2016

              Get off poor old Kitzy’s case Gezz……we all know wot she meaned XD

  5. Zedd

     /  28th July 2016

    I always look forward to the Olympics.. esp. track & Field events ! 🙂

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  28th July 2016

      Volleyball for me. 😎

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  28th July 2016

        Reply
        • Conspiratoor

           /  28th July 2016

          Beat me to it G. Had an enjoyable time googling russian women volleyball nonetheless. Cheers, c

          Reply
          • Gezza

             /  28th July 2016

            I found an even better one that involved one young lady congratulating another with a little pat but I didn’t dare post it c.

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  28th July 2016

              (Thank goodness our fan club’s still smaller than Alan’s c)

    • Corky

       /  28th July 2016

      Which they probably stole!!. Have to hand it to them,brazen and cool as a cucumber. Lucky few of the victims catch the crooks. If they did they would be knifed. Best just to learn from your mistake. I think I would rather watch the pick pocketers than the Olympics.

      As for our crooks….no class or underwear.

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  28th July 2016

        That would have been better if it hadn’t gone on so long and said (and showed) the same thing over and over. We’re not all obsessed with bare bums as the droning-voiced narrator seems to be.

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  28th July 2016

          o_O

          Reply
        • Corky

           /  28th July 2016

          Eh? I was trying for juxtaposition re Brazilian crooks and ours. But I see the problem. I posted under the wrong post. I should’ve posted under this one above.

          ”Gezza / July 28, 2016
          I understand some of them are doing so much business they even have their own eftpos machines. ”

          If I would’ve done that the clip would’ve sped up and you wouldn’t have seen so many bum-cracks.

          This clip needed contraction, I must agree.

          Reply
          • Gezza

             /  28th July 2016

            I skipped it earlier & forgot to go back to it, but I’m determined to watch it now Corky.

            Reply
          • Gezza

             /  28th July 2016

            This clip needed contraction, I must agree.

            Absolutely not! This clip is excellent entertainment & should be shown as item one on Seven Sharp & Story, Monday to Friday, during Crime Prevention Week, which should be inaugurated on the first Monday of the first week of September.

            Reply
      • Conspiratoor

         /  28th July 2016

        Big shout out to son-in-law’s father V, a true kiwi battler. Works security in a shopping mall in shall we say ‘one of the more impoverished parts of west auckland’. The local toe-rags know not to mess with him. One of the good guys who takes his job seriously

        Reply
  6. Gezza

     /  28th July 2016

    Wait’ll they start rechecking drug test results for the Russian Winter Olympics contestants. 😮

    Reply
  7. Kitty Catkin

     /  28th July 2016

    I will not be watching any of the Olympics-oh hell, they’ll be on the news every night.

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  28th July 2016

      What about why not skip telly altogether while the Olympics are on, read a good book, or come on here and give the people who deserve it a good bollocking (except me of course), and just catch up with the news on the online news sites like I sometimes do? o_O

      Reply
      • Gezza

         /  28th July 2016

        Or you could watch Al Jazeera as well, and get real in-depth news from all over the world … o_O

        Reply
        • pickled possum

           /  28th July 2016

          Yea Geza … that soundz mighty fine with me … all of the above.
          And as for the Olimpicks, well I haven’t really watched much of the last few games.
          Really it seems all too orchestrated towards the Dollar and fuck the local economy of the ‘winning’ town. I don’t know … it just lost it’s relevance to me.
          So as I don’t watch the news on TV, I will not be assalted by re-runs of the latest feat of some wonder boy or girl. 😉
          Altho I have to admit to extreme pride when I hear ad nauseam about a NZ medal … Yaaaa go the Kiwis.
          Most of my friends real worry is ‘how to keep the fox out of the chicken house.’

          Reply

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