The Olympics; Is it still a sport?

Discussion in 'Current Affairs' started by rod-gearing, Aug 6, 2008.

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  1. Targets for sports people

    I thought the true spirit of the Olympics was taking part etc.

    Seems the goverment are setting targets for this now.

    Why do they have to poke their nose in to even this now? :threaten:
  2. Having been involved on the fringes of sports admin in the UK for a few years it is certainly true that most sports governing bodies if not all have some of their funding, quite a lot of their funding actually, based on their medal potential at the Olympics and Commonwealth games. As a result because the sport I was involved in was olympic but not commonwealth, despite having an olympic gold medalist our funding from Scotland was much less than it would have been if it have been a Commonwealth sport as funding for Olympic hopefulls is directed only through UK, thus effectively English national organiisations.

    So yes basically the government sees its support for sport very much in terms of gold medals at the various games. Equally there has been a substantial move of lottery funding away from grass roots projects to either olympic of PC projects, so as ever you get cash for the one armed lesbian single mother etc, but nothing for the poor kids from sink estates
  3. If he didn't set targets and pretend to be interested, how could said sports minister justify his position? Do we even need a sports minister in this context? What'll he do, fine the Brit Olympic team for failure to hit the targets?
  4. Yes, those who fail to perform will probably have their grants cut in the future and the cash will go to those who have met their obligations
  5. When the athletes start picking up the BIG dosh, do they start to pay back the money that enabled them to advance in their sport?
  6. I can't speak for every sport but in my own I do know that the few that get to olympics do put a lot back in terms of working with the next generations and that is enough in my books, though for most in my sport an olympic medal will not bring you much extra dosh. I think most sports look for their return in unpaid coaching and mentoring for the ones on their way up. Having known one young lad who tried to get into the olympic team and failed it cost him a lot, his relationship, carreer on hold for 4 years, low pay for 4 years, no real social life for 4 years, no real holidays for 4 years, now even if he had got their and got decent funding for the last year or two do you really think he needs to pay some of that back.
  7. Do we have a list on how many ministers we employ? Each time I look we have a new minister. Do we have a minister to administer ministers if not please send application form.

    I lost interest in sports especially running when Alf Tupper hung up his boots.
  8. Alf Tupper!

    You're showing your age there fella.

    (Obviously I have no idea who you're talking about and have never read "the tough of the track lol)
  9. The Olympics was the bastion of amateur sport. Since it is now riddled with professional sportsmen and women and the IOC is such a corrupt organisation, IMHO it no longer has a place. Practically every country that holds is is left with huge debt after the event and I think that the billions that will eventually be spent by UK for 2012 would have been better targeted on the regions, rather than London
  10. Totally agree with the amateur issue - Lionel Messi wants to play for Argentina (don't know if this was allowed, anyone?), Paula "multi millionaire, serial pisser/shitter in the street" Radcliffe can run her marathons, yet Amir Kahn can't enter another Olympic boxing ring because he is now professional? What a load of rubbish.

    As for the debt issue, there have been plenty Olympic games gone by now that we should have learned how to at least break even after the event. Anyone soft enough to bid for it and too incompetent to make it a financial success is welcome to it. I suppose it's just a shame that we fit into that category.
  11. The professioanl/Amateur split in sports was a 19th century class thing nothing more or less. If you were rich you could play sport for fun, if you were poor you needed to get some money from it.

    Boxing is slightly different as I understand both the nature of the bout and the medical requirements are different between amateur and pro, perhaps it should simply be an age thing.
  12. The government are spending taxpayers money on representing the UK in international competition. It seems reasonable to expect to see some verifiable outcome as a result of that investment. One might ask whether medals are a particularly useful indicator of the value of that investment, but they're nice and simple, so legitimate for a tabloid centric electorate.

    My own inclination is that it does tend to narrow the opportunity for spending the available funds and that is not inherently a good thing. I am aware of some of the initiatives currently ongoing to stream candidates for 2012, which have been going on for a couple of years, there is a risk that once the candidates are in the pipeline the lower level, broad based, investment dries up and the emphasis ends up on those who are candidates for selection to that.
  13. Not unlike serving in the RN then?
  14. I don't altogether agree with the 19th C reference. The amateurs who used to represent their countries at the Olympics "when I were a lad" received support so that they could live, whereas today it is all about making profit and, in some cases millions. I don't begrudge athletes their opportunity to capitalise on their talent, but the Olympian spirit is dead and buried where these large sums of money are involved.
  15. 300 million has been sunk into team GB, regardless wether its private/lottery/taxpayer's money. In the past sport organisations have always blamed this lack of resource. Now they no longer have this to fall back on. So yet again the Aussies will trump us in the medal table again.
  16. Just seen the news. The IOC health expert had the gall to say that there was not a problem with smog in Beijing even though you could plainly see that it was not mist and the reporter had a smog detector thingyummyjig reporting all sorts of bad readings.

    We can't say bad things about the Olympics as big business will get all upset.... bless eh?
  17. The modern Olympics were started as a sporting activity for gentlemen. Only those who had the time and private means to compete were welcome, so the amateur rule was put in place to exclude the lower orders who could not afford to play sport without payment. In time this ridiculous idea only ensured that the Olympics were always a second rate competition as the best athletes were always excluded. At least allowing professionals to compete has put a small amount of honesty back into the games.

    Here in Australia certain sections of the media are demanding an increase on the Athens medal tally and anything less will be seen as a failure. A few of the more informed commentators have pointed out significant improvement in the opposition compared to Athens and stated that even a top five finish is by no means certain this time. Whatever the outcome there will always be someone with the benefit of hindsight telling us how it could have been done better.

    Anyway, the Olympics is about politics and influence. Sport is very much a sideshow.

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