Boycotting the Olympics Was Never Easier
|Fuck it Dude. Let's go bowling...|
More specifically, I described the Olympics as "a spectacle of sports people don't care to watch aimed at people who don't care to watch sports." And, furthermore, "It manages to cut the baby squarely in half, alienating those with real knowledge of the sport and whipping casual or non-fans into a frenzy over athletes plucked from obscurity who will be cruelly displaced from the spotlight as the nation's attention span for decathletes or middling hockey players wanes."
None of that has changed. That's the Olympics' permanent exhibit, so to speak. This time around, however, the spectacle has transcended from bothersome to loathsome. Because, via the Sochi Games, we're presented with a repressive kleptocracy's grotesque pageant. Atop Olympic-level corruption and graft is also the bizarre specter of Ahmadinejad-class institutionalized gay-bashing.
It would be bad enough if the Vladimir Putin Olympiad didn't blow through $51 billion -- nearly eight times the already sky-high cost of putting on the event in Vancouver.
The Olympics has a long and shameful history of cravenness in the face of evil; the stirring opening ceremony you'll watch today was originally a Hitlerian set piece.
But there are moral compromises to be made every day. Tune in to watch college football, after all, and you're participating in a system in which young men, tempted by a chance at unlikely riches, are induced to wreck their minds and bodies, sans compensation, by ostensible educational institutions that cut them loose, uneducated, when their time is up.
It's sick. It's a perversion. But we are weak. And we want to watch.
To be blunt: Olympic sports, especially Winter Olympic sports, are not as compelling -- and certainly not a part of the fabric of American life. Choosing to forgo watching them is easy; it's like boycotting tuna for people who don't particularly care for canned fish.
This is the easiest Olympics to ignore yet. It's a pretense for corrupt oligarchs to pilfer obscene amounts of taxpayer money from a nation with no shortage of human suffering. The bizarre element of homophobia and repression is the rancid cherry atop a wretched sundae.
Alas. It'd be fun to watch the hockey.