Olympic Rant #1 The Patron
THESE Olympic reports are written from the edge of the city and the jaws of hell.
The city in question is Brisbane where, as in all fair cities of Australia, good drug and alcohol-fuelled citizens are regularly bashing one another senseless, and occasionally lifeless. Friday and Saturday nights are the preferred times for such mayhem but any warm or cool enchanted evening will do.
I am confident the industrious denizens of the western world’s capital cities are similar indulging in random violence to share the terror of life in war zones.
This is why these reports on the noble Olympic games are writ from the jaws of hell. Our patron for the Capital-G Games is Thomas Hobbes.
London Games Patron
Before we introduce our patron to the enthusiastic international audience we should satisfy ourselves that we indeed live in violent times. Over a long period in journalism I have seen the reality of falling crime rates go hand-in-hand with public perceptions of their increase . Some politicians and sections of the media love to play the crime card: a fearful population are an impressionable lot.
I believe the perception of violent crime today matches the reality. For a long time, I have toyed with the notion that times of war and lauded militarism create parallel violence in civilian populations. My days of meandering through the halls of higher learning are long gone but I would like a phD student test my theory in a thesis. What the civilian ‘Libyan “liberators”, of the National Transitional Council, the Gonzoid rants on the London Olympics 2012.
WARNING: This video has been identified as potentially offensive or inappropriate by some viewers.
Most of the assailants appear to be unarmed civilians watched by gun toters in military-style dress.
This was an inauspicious start for Libyan democracy.
Meet our patron
Thomas Hobbes is a 17th century English philosopher. I say “is’’ as Tough Tom is alive in many people’s heads.
Hobbes wrote that you should bash people long and hard before they have a chance to fuck you over. Hobbes went on that, in a sophisticated society, the State could do the pre-emptive bashing on your behalf. He wrote these things in my version of his book Leviathan. My version only exists in my head but you can download another edition here http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/3207
The Religious Right owe a great debt to Hobbes. This is why they like to shooy at things while they spread the a-Hobbesian gospel of the free market.
You can see why Thomas Hobbes is an excellent patron for the London Olympics 2012.
In rant #2, we introduce the Games national anthems of England, the United States and Australia.
GREATER London 16-year-old Mahamed Awale recently tweeted: USAIN BOLT IZ A V GD FRIEND OF MINE HIM BCOMIN A RUNNA WOZ MA IDEA.
I don’t know that time line and geographic distance pans out to validate Awale’s contention.
THIS reminds me of when I covered the final Goodwill Games in Brisbane in 2001.
American Ted Turner began the Goodwill Games in Moscow in 1986 in response to the politicisation of the Olympics after the 1979 Russian invasion of Afghanistan.
The games were bought from Ted Turner by Time Warner when Turner’s company merged with TW in 1986. TW promised to keep the Goodwill Games alive
The corporation descended from Warner Bros which brought the world, hungry for justice, John Wayne movies. That lineage was interested in namby-pamby sports détente and they canned the games when ratings tanked in America.
At the final Brisbane Games I interviewed reigning Olympic 100m champion American Maurice Greene who broke down in Goodwill Games preparation and did not compete.
THE Olympic Gold medals and memorabilia of Australia’s first ever double Olympic Medal winner Bobby Pearce (1905-1976), will be auctioned at Bonhams Olympic Games Sale on 25 July 2012. The Olympic Games sale will be held at Bonhams Knightsbridge, London, saleroom in case you wish to pop down. that way.
Rower Pearce went to the Amsterdam 1928 Games and won the Gold from American entrant Kenneth Myers who was said to be so disgusted that he smashed his boat.
Pearce won skulls gold again at the Los Angeles Olympiad in 1932.
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Bernie Dowling, July 23, 2012.