Olympics fever

OLYMPICS FEVER…. It was barely noticed at the time, but in January 2008, then-President George W. Bush met with the Chicago 2016 Bid Committee and U.S. Olympic Committee members about bringing the 2016 summer games to the city. “They say that the Olympics will come to Chicago if we’re fortunate enough to be selected, but really it’s coming to America, and I can’t think of a better city to represent the United States than Chicago,” Bush said.

He added, “This country supports your bid, strongly.”

President Obama picked up where his predecessor left off, and even flew to Copenhagen this morning to promote the Chicago bid. The result was disappointing.

The International Olympic Committee delivered a stunning blow to Chicago’s bid for the 2016 Olympics, knocking it out of the voting in the first round Friday, leaving Rio de Janeiro and Madrid waiting for the announcement of which city will host the Games. Tokyo was eliminated in the second round.

I.O.C. president Jacques Rogge made the announcement as the first round concluded, a surprisingly early exit, especially because of President Barack Obama’s whirlwind trip to boost the bid of his adopted city. Mr. Obama was the first American president to make an in-person appeal for a bid city and first lady Michelle Obama had also come earlier this week to lobby I.O.C. members for votes. Chicago’s bid leaders had worked for nearly four years and spent close to $50 million to bring the Summer Olympics to the United States for the first time in 20 years. Chicago had been considered among Olympic insiders as a favorite to win the Games, along with Rio.

“Stunning blow” seems a little strong, but sure, it’s good when the United States hosts an Olympics, so today’s news was discouraging.

What I find fascinating is the extent to which the far-right was rooting against the country. Eric Erickson published an item declaring: “World Rejects Barack Obama.”

Hahahahaha. I thought the world would love us more now that Bush was gone. I thought if we whored ourselves out to our enemies, great things would happen. Apparently not.

So Obama’s pimped us to every two bit thug and dictator in the world, made promises to half the Olympic committee, and they did not even kiss him. So much for improving America’s standing in the world, Barry O.

Malkin’s mocking the U.S. defeat; so is the Weekly Standard. Fox News, which launched an aggressive effort against Chicago’s bid, will no doubt follow. (Update: the offices of the Weekly Standard, in its own words, “erupted” in “cheers” after the announcement.)

A year ago, a conservative Republican president told Chicago, “This country supports your bid, strongly.” That was then, before the right decided their hatred for the president’s hometown was more important than anything else.

Remember, in 2005, when New York was eliminated as a host city for the 2012 Olympics, and liberals everywhere giggled like children and mocked the Bush administration?

Oh wait, that didn’t happen.