Top 10 Reasons Chicago Didn’t Get the Olympics — The Night Chicago Died Music Video — REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT AND THE FIRST LADY TO THE IOC — Chicago: If you leave me now Music Video — Obama’s Olympic failure will only add to doubts about his presidency — Disappointed White House Struggles to Explain Chicago’s Defeat — Muddy Waters You Can’t Lose What You Ain’t Never Had Music Video
Top 10 Reasons Chicago Didn’t Get the Olympics
10. Dead people can’t vote at IOC meetings
9. Obama distracted by 25 min meeting with Gen. McChrystal
8. Who cares if Obama couldn’t talk the IOC into Chicago? He’ll be able to talk Iran out of nukes.
7. The impediment is Israel still building settlements.
6. Obviously no president would have been able to acomplish it.
5. We’ve been quite clear and said all along that we didn’t want the Olympics.
4. This isn’t about the number of Olympics “lost”, it’s about the number of Olympics “saved” or “created”.
3. Clearly not enough wise Latina judges on the committee
2. Because the IOC is racist.
1. It’s George Bush’s fault.
THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release October 2, 2009
REMARKS BY THE PRESIDENT AND THE FIRST LADY
TO THE INTERNATIONAL OLYMPIC COMMITTEE
9:21 A.M. CEST
MRS. OBAMA: President Rogge, ladies and gentlemen, Mesdames et Messieurs of the International Olympic Committee: I am honored to be here.
I was born and raised on Chicago’s South Side, not far from where the Games would open and close. Ours was a neighborhood of working families — families with modest homes and strong values.
Sports were what brought our community together. They strengthen our ties to one another. Growing up, when I played games with the kids in my neighborhood, we picked sides based not on who you were, but what you could bring to the game. Sports taught me self-confidence, teamwork, and how to compete as an equal.
Sports were a gift I shared with my dad — especially the Olympic Games.
Some of my best memories are sitting on my dad’s lap, cheering on Olga and Nadia, Carl Lewis, and others for their brilliance and perfection. Like so many young people, I was inspired. I found myself dreaming that maybe, just maybe, if I worked hard enough, I, too, could achieve something great.
But I never dreamed that the Olympic flame might one day light up lives in my neighborhood.
But today, I can dream, and I am dreaming of an Olympic and Paralympic Games in Chicago that will light up lives in neighborhoods all across America and all across the world; that will expose all our neighborhoods to new sports and new role models; that will show every child that regardless of wealth, or gender, or race, or physical ability, there is a sport and a place for them, too.
That’s why I’m here today. I’m asking you to choose Chicago. I’m asking you to choose America.
And I’m not asking just as the First Lady of the United States, who is eager to welcome the world to our shores. And not just as a Chicagoan, who is proud and excited to show the world what my city can do. Not just as a mother raising two beautiful young women to embrace athleticism and pursue their full potential.
I’m also asking as a daughter.
See, my dad would have been so proud to witness these Games in Chicago. And I know they would have meant something much more to him, too.
You see, in my dad’s early thirties, he was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. And as he got sicker, it became harder for him to walk, let alone play his favorite sports. But my dad was determined that sports continue to be a vital lifeline — not just to the rest of the world, but to me and my brother.
And even as we watched my dad struggle to hold himself up on crutches, he never stopped playing with us. And he refused to let us take our abilities for granted. He believed that his little girl should be taught no less than his son. So he taught me how to throw a ball and a mean right hook better than any boy in my neighborhood. But more importantly, my dad taught us the fundamental rules of the game, rules that continue to guide our lives today: to engage with honor, with dignity, and fair play.
My dad was my hero.
And when I think of what these Games can mean to people all over the world, I think about people like my dad. People who face seemingly insurmountable challenges, but never let go. They work a little harder, but they never give up.
Now, my dad didn’t live to see the day that the Paralympic Games would become the force that they are today. But if he had lived to see this day — if he could have seen the Paralympic Games share a global stage with the Olympic Games, if he could have witnessed athletes who compete and excel and prove that nothing is more powerful than the human spirit, I know it would have restored in him the same sense of unbridled possibility that he instilled in me.
Chicago’s vision for the Olympic and Paralympic movement is about so more than what we can offer the Games — it’s about what the Games can offer all of us. It’s about inspiring this generation, and building a lasting legacy for the next. It’s about our responsibility as Americans not just to put on great Games, but to use these Games as a vehicle to bring us together; to usher in a new era of international engagement; and to give us hope; and to change lives all over the world.
And I’ve brought somebody with me today who knows a little something about change. My husband, the President of the United States — Barack Obama. (Applause.)
THE PRESIDENT: President Rogge, ladies and gentlemen of the International Olympic Committee:
I come here today as a passionate supporter of the Olympic and Paralympic Games; as a strong believer in the movement they represent; and as a proud Chicagoan. But above all, I come as a faithful representative of the American people, and we look forward to welcoming the world to the shores of Lake Michigan and the heartland of our nation in 2016.
To host athletes and visitors from every corner of the globe is a high honor and a great responsibility. And America is ready and eager to assume that sacred trust. We’re a nation that has always opened its arms to the citizens of the world — including my own father from the African continent — people who have sought something better; who have dreamed of something bigger.
I know you face a difficult choice among several great cities and nations with impressive bids of their own. So I’ve come here today to urge you to choose Chicago for the same reason I chose Chicago nearly 25 years ago — the reason I fell in love with the city I still call home. And it’s not just because it’s where I met the woman you just heard from — although after getting to know her this week, I know you’ll all agree that she’s a pretty big selling point for the city.
You see, growing up, my family moved around a lot. I was born in Hawaii. I lived in Indonesia for a time. I never really had roots in any one place or culture or ethnic group. And then I came to Chicago. And on those Chicago streets, I worked alongside men and women who were black and white; Latino and Asian; people of every class and nationality and religion. I came to discover that Chicago is that most American of American cities, but one where citizens from more than 130 nations inhabit a rich tapestry of distinctive neighborhoods.
Each one of those neighborhoods — from Greektown to the Ukrainian Village; from Devon to Pilsen to Washington Park — has its own unique character, its own unique history, its songs, its language. But each is also part of our city — one city — a city where I finally found a home.
Chicago is a place where we strive to celebrate what makes us different just as we celebrate what we have in common. It’s a place where our unity is on colorful display at so many festivals and parades, and especially sporting events, where perfect strangers become fast friends just because they’re wearing the same jersey. It’s a city that works — from its first World’s Fair more than a century ago to the World Cup we hosted in the nineties, we know how to put on big events. And scores of visitors and spectators will tell you that we do it well.
Chicago is a city where the practical and the inspirational exist in harmony; where visionaries who made no small plans rebuilt after a great fire and taught the world to reach new heights. It’s a bustling metropolis with the warmth of a small town; where the world already comes together every day to live and work and reach for a dream — a dream that no matter who we are, where we come from; no matter what we look like or what hand life has dealt us; with hard work, and discipline, and dedication, we can make it if we try.
That’s not just the American Dream. That is the Olympic spirit. It’s the essence of the Olympic spirit. That’s why we see so much of ourselves in these Games. That’s why we want them in Chicago. That’s why we want them in America.
We stand at a moment in history when the fate of each nation is inextricably linked to the fate of all nations — a time of common challenges that require common effort. And I ran for President because I believed deeply that at this defining moment, the United States of America has a responsibility to help in that effort, to forge new partnerships with the nations and the peoples of the world.
No one expects the Games to solve all our collective challenges. But what we do believe — what each and every one of you believe and what all of the Chicago delegation believes — is that in a world where we’ve all too often witnessed the darker aspects of our humanity, peaceful competition between nations represents what’s best about our humanity. It brings us together, if only for a few weeks, face to face. It helps us understand one another just a little bit better. It reminds us that no matter how or where we differ, we all seek our own measure of happiness, and fulfillment, and pride in what we do. That’s a very powerful starting point for progress.
Nearly one year ago, on a clear November night, people from every corner of the world gathered in the city of Chicago or in front of their televisions to watch the results of the U.S. Presidential election. Their interest wasn’t about me as an individual. Rather, it was rooted in the belief that America’s experiment in democracy still speaks to a set of universal aspirations and ideals. Their interest sprung from the hope that in this ever-shrinking world, our diversity could be a source of strength, a cause for celebration; and that with sustained work and determination, we could learn to live and prosper together during the fleeting moment we share on this Earth.
Now, that work is far from over, but it has begun in earnest. And while we do not know what the next few years will bring, there is nothing I would like more than to step just a few blocks from my family’s home, with Michelle and our two girls, and welcome the world back into our neighborhood.
At the beginning of this new century, the nation that has been shaped by people from around the world wants a chance to inspire it once more; to ignite the spirit of possibility at the heart of the Olympic and Paralympic movement in a new generation; to offer a stage worthy of the extraordinary talent and dynamism offered by nations joined together — to host games that unite us in noble competition and shared celebration of our limitless potential as a people.
And so I urge you to choose Chicago. I urge you to choose America. And if you do, if we walk this path together, then I promise you this: The city of Chicago and the United States of America will make the world proud. Thank you so much. (Applause.)
LuckyBogey Comment: Hum… Sitting in Dad’s Lap watching Carl Lewis? You may want to recheck those dates? I don’t know too many 16 or 20 year old daughters sitting in their dad’s lap watching the Olympics?? You think the IOC might also know this?? Maybe the White House “Reality Checkers” should be reviewing your own administration.
Times Online – Tim Reid
There has been a growing narrative taking hold about Barack Obama’s presidency in recent weeks: that he is loved by many, but feared by none; that he is full of lofty vision, but is actually achieving nothing with his grandiloquence.
Chicago’s dismal showing today, after Mr Obama’s personal, impassioned last-minute pitch, is a stunning humiliation for this President. It cannot be emphasised enough how this will feed the perception that on the world stage he looks good — but carries no heft.
It was only the Olympic Games, the White House will argue — not a high-stakes diplomatic gamble with North Korea. It is always worthwhile when Mr Obama sells America to the rest of the world, David Axelrod, his chief political adviser, said today. But that argument will fall on deaf ears in the US. Americans want their presidents to be winners.
Mr Obama was greeted — as usual — like a rock star by the IOC delegates in Copenhagen — then humiliated by them. Perception is reality. A narrow defeat for Chicago would have been acceptable — but the sheer scale of the defeat was a bombshell, and is a major blow for Mr Obama at a time when questions are being asked about his style of governance.
At home, it is difficult to turn on a television and not see Mr Obama giving a press conference, or an interview, or at a town hall rally, in his all-out effort to sell his troubled reform the US health insurance system. After three months of enormous exposure, Mr Obama has achieved this: the growing likelihood of ramming a Bill through Congress with — at most — just one Republican vote…]
Abroad, Mr Obama promised in his Inauguration address to engage America’s enemies, and he has done just that. He has very little to show for it. Yes, Iran took part in bilateral talks with the US this week over its nuclear weapons programme — but that is something Tehran has wanted for years. There is still a very good chance that the meetings will prove to be an exercise in futility and a time-wasting ploy by Tehran.
Mr Obama also scrapped a plan for a missile defence shield in the Czech Republic and Poland, hoping to get in return Russian co-operation behind new sanctions against Tehran. There was optimism when President Medvedev said “sanctions are seldom productive, but they are sometimes inevitable”. Yet Vladimir Putin, and the Chinese, remain fiercely opposed to sanctions.
Meanwhile, America and its allies are being forced to witness a very public agonising by Mr Obama and his advisers over his Afghan strategy — six months after he announced that strategy.
This has all added to the perception that Mr Obama’s soaring rhetoric — which captured the imagination during last year’s election — is simply not enough when it comes to confronting the myriad challenges of the presidency. His spectacular Olympic failure will only add to that.
Washington Post – By Anne E. Kornblut
With the stunning news that Olympics officials had swiftly rejected Chicago as host the 2016 Games, despite a personal, last-minute appeal from President Obama, the White House was left Friday with the immediate and difficult challenge of explaining what happened.
Did the president falter by making remarks that were emotional and personal, rather than giving specifics about his adopted home town? Is the defeat a sign that Obama’s global popularity has begun to wane?
White House advisers — many of them Chicago natives, with a personal stake in the bid — rushed into the back recesses of the West Wing to digest the outcome and then emerged, looking glum, to comment.
“Obviously, it was disappointing,” senior adviser David Axelrod said on CNN from the North Lawn of the White House. “We wanted Chicago to get this. We wanted the U.S. to host the Olympics. The president made a very strong appeal, and it didn’t work out, but it was well worth the effort.”
Axelrod blamed the internal machinations of the International Olympic Committee for the rejection. He argued that the bid by Madrid was led by a former president of the IOC, who was calling in years’ worth of favors, and that Rio de Janeiro, trying to become the first South American host, had a strong case as well.
The IOC ended up choosing Rio to host the 2016 Summer Games.
“I don’t view this as a repudiation of the president or the first lady,” he said. “I think there are politics everywhere, and there were politics inside that room.”
Obama was still in the air, flying back from making his pitch in Copenhagen, when the news of Chicago’s loss broke shortly before noon.
The president had traveled to Denmark to make the case for Chicago, joining his wife, first lady Michelle Obama, senior adviser Valerie Jarrett and an array of Chicago luminaries, including Oprah Winfrey. His top aides had refused to speculate ahead of time about what a defeat would mean, but they privately acknowledged that Obama was taking a risk by making such a personal effort.
Even with the debate over health care, unexpectedly high unemployment numbers, nuclear talks with Iran and the deliberations over an Afghan strategy still underway, Obama’s decision to involve himself in the Olympic vote seemed to guarantee that the news from Copenhagen would eclipse other stories for at least a day.
Asked earlier Friday whether Obama would talk about the decision aboard Air Force One, White House press secretary Robert Gibbs quipped: “Depends on what that decision is.”
Obama is now scheduled to arrive at the White House at 4 p.m. and to make remarks then.
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