So the usual suspects in the media are commenting about Chicago losing the opportunity to host the 2016 Olympic games to Rio. Despite what they say, this effort was neither arrogant nor a fool’s errand. If that was the case, the President of Brazil, Prime Minister of Japan and the King of Spain would have skyped in their statements of support for their own bids instead of flying to Copenhagen to deliver them personally. Of course, facts will not stop Obama’s critics.
What’s truly interesting is why Chicago lost out to Rio: affirmative action. No South American nation had ever hosted the Olympics, the USA has hosted more than any country except Greece. Brazil is an emerging economy, right on the heels of China and India. US economic shenanigans almost pulled the nation into a world-wide Depression. Brazil is a multi-racial nation and Rio a sprawling city with too many guns and too much crime. The US is a multi-racial nation and Chicago a sprawling city with too many guns and too much crime. So I guess that last point evens out.
See, if William Safire or Irving Kristol were still alive they might point out the delicious irony of the US’s first Black president making an appeal for the Olympics only to lose out to another country primarily for the sake of fairness and (geographic and economic) diversity. I guess it’s much more satisfying to crow about Obama failing, even if it isn’t true.