Originally Posted by nikkibong
I've changed the subject line. Apologies for including you in the original version.
But more the point: yes, the subject line was crass. But let me try to explain where it's coming from. As I'm sure you'll recall, for eight years under Bush, anyone to the left of Tom Delay was accused of anti-Americanism. So there is a certain (crass) satisfaction in seeing those same arbiters of all things Patriotic turn tail and celebrate a defeat for the United States. Generally, I think it's a dangerous thing to label one's opponents "unAmerican or anti-American." (Jacob Weisberg's ridiculous piece
labelling Fox "unamerican" is a good example.) We have got to do away with that cheap trick, and start arguing these points on the merits.
The Olympics - unlike the absurd Nobel Prize - would have been an unalloyed (economic, cultural) good for the United States. Cheering its loss was not cheering an Obama defeat; it was cheering an American defeat.
(BTW: I was rooting for Chicago. But my second choice was your current home, Tokyo. Japan needs the morale boost, I think.)
I take your point. And again, I agree with the underlying sentiment that it's stupid to try to make political hay from something like this. Would the Obama-haters cheer if Hawaii sank into the ocean because that's where he spent his youth?
As to the Olympics, specifically, I guess the IOC figured it was just time for South America to get one. I have serious doubts about the whole selection process, though. Back when Nagano was awarded the winter games one of the Japanese Olympic Committee members, if I recall, basically admitted that they paid people off to get them. Then when the government (or somebody) investigated, they found that the paperwork had all been destroyed. Oops. Then there was the whole Salt Lake City thing. If the Olympics can corrupt "Jerusalem West," they can dirty anyplace.