We didn’t spend near the time blogging about the 2010 Winter Olympics (in fact, blog post total: zero) as we did the 2008 games because, well, think about it: Friendly, unassuming Canadians vs. authoritarian Chi-comms. It’s a no-brainer.
The next Winter Olympics, however, should provide some good blog fodder as the host nation is Russia and its current leader is none too pleased with his country’s dismal performance in these Olympics and is vowing changes in preparation for the Sochi games in ’14.
“Those who bear the responsibility for Olympic preparations should carry that responsibility. It's totally clear," he (President Dmitry Medvedev)i said. "I think that the individuals responsible, or several of them, who answer for these preparations, should take the courageous decision to hand in their notice. If we don't see such decisiveness, we will help them."
For a country with a, umm, storied history of how they treat dissidents and individuals that can’t quite get with the program, those would not appear to be idle words.
Coming in, Russia boasted of winning 30 medals but after disappointing performances in ice hockey and figure skating, a couple of Russian strong suits, the Russians limped out of Vancouver with only 3 gold medals and 15 overall, finishing in 6th place behind Austria in the medal count by country.
Medvedev also lamented the loss of the system that cranked out medal winners that he referred to as ‘the old Soviet school”.
Suffice to say, good times will abound when the leader of a former communist empire is getting wistful for gulags and blood-doping.
See ya in Sochi!