The Economics of the Olympics (WRD-Response 3)

As the 2016 Olympics come to an end, the United States is celebrating once again. With 121 total medals in Rio, there seems to be no debate that the U.S. is the most dominant country in the world-in terms of sports. For decades, the U.S sent the best athletes in the world to represent our glorious nation. And time and time again they all flashed the colors of red, white, and blue to truly reminded us all what it means to be American. But while many countries like the United States are celebrating, there is one country in particular that has a bitter taste in their mouth-Brazil. While Brazil won a total of 19 medals, nothing could distract the country from the economic downfall that was the Olympics. The country alone spent a whopping 5 billion dollars on the Olympics and many would argue that it wasn’t money well spent. While Rio struggles with rising crime, funding shortfalls, under equipped police forces and hospitals, and worries over the Zika virus, the nation of Brazil decided it was a better idea to put money towards stadiums and hotels, rather than fixing their own domestic issues. But Brazil is not the only country that has been hurt economically by the Olympics. Each year, the Olympics leave many countries in serious debt. Since 1968, the price for the Olympics has gone up tremendously and the only countries that can truly benefit from the Olympics are those who have already built stadiums like the U.S, and are in good financial standing. Many nations don’t necessarily look at the cost of hosting, rather they focus more attention on the image of hosting. China for example spent billions of dollars in order to make sure that their nation was one of the best to host the Olympics. Likewise, nationalism still plays a huge role in sports. Nations like Brazil will find it acceptable to spend money to make it look like they’re the best country, rather than truly fixing their own issues. And while many would argue that major corporations like Coca-Cola and McDonald’s spent millions of dollars on advertisement to help fund the cost, it’s only a fractional percentage. Majority of the money comes from the host nations own people. The people of Brazil, for example, had alarming increases in taxes in order to pay for the Olympics. While the majority of people in Rio are poor, the nation decided that money for infrastructure and better schools was second on their list, compared to hosting the Olympics. It’s reoccurring problems like these that we must ask ourselves “Should we ban the Olympics?”

Arkadiusz- Personally, I am against the structure of the Olympics. While it is important for countries to display their nationalism, there must be a better way of funding. Each host nation is rapidly rushed in order to provide stadiums that are close distances, valuable forms of transportation, and create money that they don’t have. So a better option will be if other nations helped out. There shouldn’t be one predominant country to host, but a substantial number of them. If Germany hosted swimming, and Brazil hosted volleyball the next year, it will still provide each country the opportunity to make an economic profit, still showcases their nationalism, and give each nation less of a burden to hike up taxes and pressure their citizens. The Olympics, in turn, could run smother and not waste a vast majority of dollars for the host nation. Thus, a major factor the will contribute to my position is the statistics of how money is spent in the Olympics, and personal stories from the locals about their own experiences with the Olympics. Throughout my paper, I hope to illuminate the ethical side of the Olympics, and how it leaves many people in the dust. I’ll also show the logical standpoint on where money should be spent, as well certain statistics that will show how corrupt the Olympics truly are. My intended audience for this piece are people that were affected by the Olympics, the Olympic committee itself, and countries that soon wish to host the Olympics. The reason that these will be my intended audience is that each has a vital impact on my point. People who experienced the Olympics first hand, can tell what was great about it, and things to improve on. Likewise, the Olympic committee is another important factor to consider since, at the end of the day, they’re the ones making the final decision. By exposing the flaws in the system, I hope to introduce a new strategy where countries can still show their pride, but do so in a way that in doesn’t hurt the host nation. And last, I hope to convince a future host nation the implications of hosting the Olympics. Consequently, while many countries believe that revenue goes up from the Olympics, it actually cost more to host and profits are never to be found. Each of my attended audience will have a mixed review about the Olympics. Many of them will be highly educated, while others would be from a lower social economic background. In addition, the geography of the Olympics will be between the poor and the rich. Specifically, those who benefit from the Olympics and those affected by it. While I’m specifically against banning the Olympics, we need to change it and not worry about tradition.

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