The Japan News,
The Yomiuri Shimbun,
1-7-1 Otemachi, Chiyoda-ku,
The last Olympic Games I saw on television was Montreal 1976. I was mesmerised by gymnast Nadia Comaneci, who was the same age as me. I don’t see Tokyo 2020 changing that just because I live here. I will never see the new stadium, whatever it turns out to be. I will not attend any events, nor watch them on television, nor will I buy any Olympic goods or souvenirs. I suppose I will read the daily medal count in the print media, if the print media still exists. I haven’t met any Japanese yet who think much differently than this about it. Maybe it’s still too remote for my acquaintances to think about, but so far what I feel from people ranges from apathy to resentment at the cost of it, and the notorious, cynically deceptive manner in which Japan netted the Games.
I am unmoved by the desire to show pride in how the nation has recovered from the March 2011 disasters. Has it recovered? Or, use of the Games as a magnet for investment to boost the perpetually weak economy. I worry that the planned facilities are destined to be gigantic white elephants - an unrecoverable economic loss. With a shrinking and aging population who is supposed to use the facilities when the Games are over? Expectations of an active, healthy population will fail spectacularly.
The glory of sport for its own sake, and the peaceful meeting of nations don’t exist. It’s all corrupt politics and corrupt business, each with its hand in the other’s pocket.
It’s not even that the Olympics represent the epitome of athletic achievement, because each sport has its own world championship, and that ought to be enough.
Let’s close the book on the Olympics.