Sunday, August 03, 2008

I won't be watching

I've written about the Bejing Olympics several times; here, here, here, here, and here, among other places.

As you might gather, I'm no fan of China's government.

I am, however, a major sports fan.

So it's going to be very painful for me to NOT watch the upcoming Bejing Olympics over the coming two weeks, starting this Friday. But I'm choosing to forgo watching the events because I don't want to be even the tiniest bit in agreement with what I expect will be an exhibition of Chinese nationalism and propaganda that will rival the 1936 Berlin Olympics.

The Chinese government may be our nation's favorite source for cheap goods and such, but they also lead the world in repression and human rights violations. As bad as the U.S. has gotten in recent years, I think we'll be getting back on the right track starting early next year, when President Obama and a Democratic Congress will work together to correct some of the worst excesses of the Bush/Cheney regime.

China has complained bitterly about the criticism of their actions, of course. They are experts at playing the "victim". I've seen countless examples in the media of our need to avoid "hurting the feelings" of the Chinese people; as if the whole world is mean and unfair, and poor little China is just trying to get along as best they can.

Sorry, I won't buy it.

However, I don't expect China to change anytime soon. Not as long as we continue giving them tacit approval of their awful policies in exchange for cheap toys and dog food that occasionally won't poison our children or our pets. And an uncritical media is accepting China's censorship and restrictions because their corporate owners will get a windfall of viewers and advertising dollars.

Will my little protest make any difference in the larger picture? Of course not.

But I will be able to sleep a little better at night. And the NY Mets are still on the air, so I'll get my sports fix by screaming at my TV and spewing vial abuse at their awful bullpen (they blew yet ANOTHER 2-run lead in the 9th last night!)


Stamford Talk said...

I don't think the media is uncritical; I've been reading a lot recently (in the media!) about China's attempts to scale back on access it had previously granted.

CT Bob, I admire your stand, but I am pained for you- the Olympics are so much fun to watch. Maybe you can catch highlights on ESPN.

I'm curious many other people are boycotting watching the Olympics. They should make a facebook page for that so we can keep count!

I myself will be watching as much as possible.

Her Royal Fu-ness said...

lol,did u see the n.korean cartoon on my page?

yes, china has a terrible record, but so does the u.s., so if olympics were held here, would you boycott that too? hehe just trying to give you a logical excuse to watch the olympics :p they only have a market to sell their cheap tainted goods b/c we give them one--that has to change.

& we need someone intelligent like you to criticize all the pomp & circumstance that the chinese will undoubtedly't ya watch just a lil bit??

oldswede said...

I gave up watching the Olympics on TV years ago when the network decided that showing the competitions were not as interesting as creating narratives about the American athletes. Every player had to have a special, heart-wrenching story of overcoming something or other.
Only events that were important were those that featured American competitors. No other countries mattered much. Very boring, very frustrating.
McCainInc is likely on this frantic pace to redefine Obama now because they see America tuning out of the campaign once the games start. I wonder if the viewers really care about either one.
Nice nugget from McClatchy:
"In their efforts to curb air pollution for the upcoming games, the Chinese shut down manufacturing plants in and around Beijing — including cutbacks at factories producing 80 percent of the world’s ascorbic acid, more commonly known as vitamin C."
Didn't know that the sunshine vitamin caused smog.

CT Bob said...

You know what? After the Mets lost yet ANOTHER game today, I'm thinking of giving up watching sports altogether!

So, I hereby boycott the NY Mets until they STOP SUCKING!!!

(not holding my breath about that)