Game of Hosts
The Olympics are about as prestigious as sports get, but that doesn’t mean countries are jumping at the opportunity to host them. According to Deadspin’s appropriately titled article, “Nobody Wants to Host the 2022 Olympics,” countries are considering the worth of hosting the Olympics after seeing the $51 billion price tag from Sochi’s recent Winter Olympics. The objections against hosting the Olympics in this day and age are pretty similar to the gripes Brazil is having with the World Cup right now: People do not want that much money being spent on stadiums that get used for just a few weeks. Countries that were finalists to host the 2022 Winter Games are dropping like flies now. Krakow, Poland withdrew its bid after 70% of voters said they were against it. Davos/St. Moritz, Switzerland, Munich, Germany and Oslo, Norway are following suit for similar reasons. Stockholm, Sweden saw its leading political party reject funding the games because of the inherent costs. Lviv, Ukraine is a sad joke now because of the fighting in the country. Sadly, the Olympics might be too much of a financial liability in this day and age, or at least that’ll be up to the two remaining nominees for 2022, which should be interesting according to Barry Petchesky of Deadspin: “There are only two healthy bids: Almaty, Kazakhstan, and Beijing, China. One’s an oil-rich state ruled by a president-for-life, and the other’s, well, China.”
The harsh opening winter of 2014 hurt our heating bills, but it also froze a recovering economy in the United States. Al Jazeera reported on a 1% drop in the U.S. gross domestic product, or GDP. This drop is two times greater than what analysts expected. Experts quoted in the article are quick to label the rough winter as a “temporary” or “one-time factor,” optimistic that it will not hinder further economic growth. The damage of a rough winter remains apparent though, as the horribly cold season caused “far slower pace of inventory accumulation, especially by motor vehicle dealerships, and a trade deficit that is bigger than previously estimated.” New Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen called this snow slowdown out back in February, but it didn’t stop her from tapering the Fed’s bond purchases. Critics of Yellen and the Fed’s tapering argue that tapering this winter was a bad time to start it.
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