Years ago, I was repulsed by the hypocrisy of the International Olympic Committee in allowing state sponsored athletes from various totalitarian hell holes to compete against the real amateurs. Then there was the biased judging, and the worst was the East German "female" swimmers built like Freightliners.
(Pity the East German men - instead of a marriage license, you needed a CDL. No steroids there, just move along...)
I find the Olympic games even less interesting as the "modern" sports such as snowboarding are added to the games, while original sports are watered down into irrelevance. Globalism is further dimming the intrigue - the EUrocollective are already diminished as countries and as competitors. Soon enough we'll be down to Oceania vs. Eurasia vs. Eastasia, and we'll skip the stadium construction and go straight to a few minutes hate. So, who cares? I haven't watched any portion of the 2010 games except the internet video of the luge fatality.
Close friends know of my passion for auto racing. Over the years, the racing community has lost a lot of drivers in terrible accidents. We've learned with each death and over time have made racing far safer. Track design is a major area of progress in the last two decades.
With this as my background, I was horrified to see the poor luge athlete slam into the post. It is sheer idiocy to design a steep, fast luge course and leave steel posts exposed for people to slam into.
Not just exposed steel posts, but perpendicular to the track.
This death is the natural product of a chronologically mature bureaucracy at rest. Damn shame they didn't have a pro driver up to look things over before they killed that kid. (I'm far from a pro, and I would have noticed that hazard the first time I walked by. One wonders what hazards remain?) Any one of a number of simple measures would have made that course safe and turned that accident into something he walked away from, and - one which fades from the news by morning.
It probably would have been simplest to build a wall that prevented an out of control driver's body from going above and behind the course wall. (Duh!) Then, you'd just slide back down onto the course and even if you were really flying you could still be stopped by a net at the bottom of the hill. (Or a meat hook if they merely wanted to hurt you but not kill you. Anything beats a steel I-beam.) If someone's precious view was involved, use lexan for the wall.
But, nobody cared.
As to the jackass who said that death was due to driver error, well... He's lucky I wasn't in the room. Then the IOC tries to censor the video on the web. Then, the hypocritical bastards change the course, thereby acknowledging that it was gross negligence to begin with.
The athletes themselves could take a valuable lesson from racers here, too: We've known for decades that if you arrive at a new track and discover that a shithead designed the place, you stand together and refuse to run there.
Every aspect of this stinks.
I know we don't have China's 1.3 billion people, and on top of that ammo is dear these days. Nonetheless, I believe we could afford to take a few people out and shoot them, and the IOC is clearly the perfect place to start.
Week in Review: August 19, 2017
13 hours ago