Sochi Winter Games - Not so Simple

Arthur Caplan May 31, 2013 0

Original Article from:
By Elizabeth Shockman, Denis Dyomkin and Alissa de Carbonnel, Reuters | May 30, 2013

Is it time to cancel the next Winter Olympics? The graft, corruption and fraud associated with the upcoming games in Sochi are off the charts. It is hard to see how anyone in the name of sportsmanship or celebrating the virtues inherent in athletic achievement can do so at an event that cost four times the amount originally budgeted and has turned into a feeding frenzy for businessmen with close ties to the Putin government?

If we are not going to cancel this fiasco no matter how many billions are siphoned away to line the pockets of the privileged, can we at least agree that Sochi shows the utter folly and complete immorality of asking any nation to create a small city from scratch to host an event that lasts barely two weeks in the hope that something built for one purpose—sports—will somehow serve other longer term needs—housing, tourism, economic stimulus. If we want to continue the Olympics then move them to two venues—one summer, one winter, that have nearly all the infrastructure already in place. Advocates of the Olympics talk about the ‘OLYMPIC SPIRIT’ which seeks to inspire today’s youth to build a peaceful and better world. Today’s youth should not be asked to do so when the building sucks up money better spent on more pressing social needs while lining the pockets of a greedy few.

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