Dangerous Dan Thoughts and musings on the world

8/8/2008

Beijing Olympics

Filed under: General — Dangerous Dan @ 9:27 pm

The real logo

I've only watched the opening ceremony and I'm already irritated by this Olympics.  I'm disappointed a tyranny has the opportunity to make it seem like a responsible nation and not an autocratic oppressor of one sixth of the planet's population.  I'm disappointed news organizations haven't said more on China cracking down on potential dissidents ahead of the games, including the parents of children who were killed in the earthquake, which was largely due to official corruption and incompetence (this made the line in the ceremony about the state being the guarantor of children's safety tragically ironic).  I'm disappointed those same news organizations didn't make more of a fuss when they found out China would censor their internet connections despite repeated claims it wouldn't.  In both cases, though, this wasn't surprising.  They were following a long journalistic tradition, best exemplified by the SOB Walter Duranty, of cowing to tyrannies in order to maintain access and privileges and avoid being expelled.  I don't like the Chi-coms.  And I don't like the international media.  They will crow about freedom of the press while in countries assuring it but will cave without complaint to countries denying it.

Some general observations on the opening ceremony:

  • Just as I did in 2004, I dearly wish Bob Costas would shut the hell up.  I've always been irritated during these ceremonies when the man is unable to let more than 10 seconds go by without blithering something – anything – no matter how inane.
  • The three major Chinese philosophies were listed as Taoism, Confucianism, and Buddhism.  What?  No Maoism?  Communism?  Oppression…ism?
  • In all the symbolic dancing representing Chinese history, where were the dances for the Great Leap Forward and the Cultural Revolution?  Think of the great costumes with dunce caps on intellectuals and everybody wearing Mao suits!  Oh and backyard smelting furnace props!  Oh, and the leaping, the leaping that could have been done!
  • Of the 22 ethnicities making up China, did that include those that were conquered and forcibly relocated throughout China in order to destroy their cultural identity while their homelands were repopulated by loyal ethnic Chinese?
  • With the nations' delegations walking in, the crowd has thus far cheered for Taiwan, Iraq, the U.S., and North Korea.  Curious selection.  Is it cynical of me to think the cheering is directed and not spontaneous?
  • Those girls along the sidelines in the white caps were pretty active at first.  They're barely moving an hour in.  They better get with it; it would be sad if their families never saw them again.
  • Yao Ming is tall.
  • Why can't they just have somebody run up some damn steps and light the damn torch?  That goes for all Olympic opening ceremonies.

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