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XYlophonetreeZ
04-13-2008, 12:34 AM
Boycott the Olympics? Good idea, or bad idea?

Also, please explain to me why the primary reason for boycotting them has suddenly shifted to "Free Tibet!" instead of the more dire fact that China continues to supply the Sudanese military with weapons, thus enabling them to continue genocide. It really is a funny phenomenon- for at least a decade, "Free Tibet!" has become the quintessentially mocked phrase for hollow hippie activism, and now suddenly Darfur-centered activism has taken that spot. Now Tibet is sexy again, while Darfur is soooo 2006. And through a bizarre twist of fate, they're both considered reasons to boycott the same Olympics.

I find it noteworthy to mention that the recent demonstrations in Tibet are part of something that has happened every single year for a long time (basically, where the fuck has everybody been?). But this year, China's got the Olympics. Therefore, it seems logical to conclude that an increase in publicity has caused the increase in the intensity of the protests, and not vice versa. But I guess that's just my estimation of the most likely scenario, being a total outsider.

Also, why the fuck has the Dalai Lama not been added to "Stuff White People Like" yet?

ad8
04-13-2008, 04:44 AM
Who cares about daily deaths in Afghanistan or whatever? Once people have heard enough of one cruel thing, they want news and don't care about the old things, no matter whether the situation gets better or not.

Mota Boy
04-13-2008, 05:01 AM
The rioting in Tibet and other provinces wasn't just more of the same - it was the worst violence in the region in over two decades (I think the last major flare-up was in 1987). The incident happened because Tibetan monks celebrating the Dali Llama meeting with the US President (in China, traditionally you can tell a lot about how powerful a person is by their literal proximity to the leader in photo-ops) were arrested several months ago, and protests against their continued incarceration escalated into deadly riots aimed at China and the Chinese in general. So in a roundabout way, ironically, the US is behind the current oppression of Tibetans.

And personally, Darfur annoys me. It's a "sexy" issue, sure, and yes, it's horrible what is happening, but for all the time, energy, attention and money that has been thrown at the problem, there is some evidence that the violence is actually increasing... meanwhile, it takes attention away from other issues which are less sexy but which could have an even greater impact on people's lives. Donating $100 to victims of Darfur is nice, but for every life you save there, you could save, say, two by donating to disease-prevention programs, or the UN's World Food program. I mean, I think it's nice that people care about an issue, but I do get annoyed when people wrap it up with a touch of moral superiority, especially when it is a trendy issue.

As for China... sit down, my friend, and I will tell you about China. I have some observances and opinions. I will talk about China until you run screaming from the room with your hands clamped over your ears. In a nutshell, though, here are my thoughts on the Olympics:

I do think that the Olympics should be sports-centric and that inserting politics is unfortunate. I think Olympic boycotts are terrible, as they punish athletes and spectators. There are better routes for protest.

However, the history of the Olympics is a history of politics and protests

The Chinese government is being ridiculous when it announces that politics have no place in the Olympics, that it's just about sports. For years, the government has been running an ad campaign, using the Olympics as a source of Chinese pride, as a call to Chinese unity. The government is also using it as a sort of coming-out party, as a chance to showcase to the world China as a global power, as a first-world nation. In a way, this is merely it becoming a victim of its own success, as this Olympics has been so big that there are plenty of other groups that want to co-opt the government's message.

For me, something I've really begun to think about is that this could possibly be the biggest PR disaster in history. China, as said before, is using the Olympics as a coming out party, but it's proving itself to be disastrously, often hilariously, unprepared for the world stage. The government is used to dictating reality without dissent, using words that are heavy with meaning and history in Chinese, but just sound, at times, downright silly when used in English and directed against an international crowd. That gulf not only leaves them without credibility, but makes them look out of touch with reality, even a little crazy.

They have made this so important, not only in selling it to the world but in selling it to the Chinese, that they must take it absolutely, almost ridiculously seriously. I still can't get over that people are dying in riots in Tibet, that martial law is declared across an entire city... and Chinese, almost frantically, respond with "They're trying to ruin the Olympics!" as an appeal to the international community. Uh, dudes, priorities? Meanwhile, they have the top graduates of the nations elite military police academy, trained in riot control, jogging around the Olympic torch, charged with protecting the flame. Uh, what? They've been accused of roughhousing not only protesters, but also people that held the flame and local police. I'm starting to fear that the Chinese would do some fairly terrible things to ensure that this goes well. And while it's perfectly OK (from a PR standpoint) to do that to your own people (such as rounding up 200,000 migrant workers in Beijing and shipping them back to the countryside ahead of the games), if they get rough with protesters, it could get ugly.

And the Chinese people... the Chinese people have been so pumped full of nationalism that, while it brings them together as a nation, could look awful on the international stage. If you get people defiantly repeating that Tibet "always has been and always will be part of China", claiming that Darfur is all lies by the international community or insulting Tibetans or others, it could be bad. Not to mention that the Chinese Olympians have been training almost non-stop for years, and with the hometown crowd behind them, if they start to do well, to do perhaps too well, they could find the rest of the world rooting against their athletes.

All this, and China, in painting itself as a global power, in one way gets the kid gloves removed. It's harder to avoid criticism for, say, being the world's largest carbon polluter, or for all those human rights abuses both at home and overseas, when you're one of the big boys on the block. It's no longer thought of as a poor nation that can't afford certain measures. It's harder to feel sympathy for a country brimming with millionaires. The story becomes less about that infectious, can-do spirit that China's radical growth gives off, and more about "Well, now that you're eating steak, time to talk about cutting back a bit."

For a sinophile, this is going to be fascinating. I really think it could be a defining moment in Chinese history.

Oh, and meanwhile the stock market has fallen almost fifty percent off its highs for the year, and nobody knows when it will hit bottom. Most of the Chinese, meanwhile, are waiting until the Olympics for the government to do something about it, as there is a pervasive belief that the government will have to fix things in the run-up to the Games, so if August swings around and there are still problems...

Little_Miss_1565
04-13-2008, 07:56 AM
I totally understand the desire to boycott the Olympics for all the fucked up shit going on...but motherfucker, we didn't boycott Nazi Germany's Olympics. China has some serious shit to work through, but on the grand scale of governmental abuses, there's no reason we shouldn't participate in the games.

Vera
04-13-2008, 08:05 AM
But you guys, somebody has to boycott or Finland doesn't stand a chance at winning some medals. :(

Cock Joke
04-13-2008, 08:56 AM
Any country who boycotts the Olympics is gay and they deserve to be ridiculed and referred to as "pussies" no matter what the reason is for boycotting.

For example, let's say you boycott the Olympics because China is a communist country, you know that country will be hated and looked down upon, people may even say that they're all cowards, and I will support that! There is no excuse to boycott the Olympics. Especially the Summer Olympics because they're the real deal!

Having said all that, let's hope that America can pull through OK.

IamSam
04-13-2008, 09:50 AM
I totally understand the desire to boycott the Olympics for all the fucked up shit going on...but motherfucker, we didn't boycott Nazi Germany's Olympics. China has some serious shit to work through, but on the grand scale of governmental abuses, there's no reason we shouldn't participate in the games.

You're right...instead we went and kicked their goose stepping asses.

Jesus
04-14-2008, 06:15 AM
Depends what boycott you are talking about: by government officials or the athletes?

I'm all for a political boycott, so no government representatives participating and attending the jerkfest ceremonies.
Athletes should just compete if they want too, but they should also be allowed to make political statements which is something the Olympic charter doesn't allow. Although I doubt they are going to enforce a ban if athletes do speak out, because that would be a PR disaster for the IOC.

I do think the games might turn out to be a complete PR disaster though, if you watch interviews of regular Chinese people they appear as out of touch with reality as most Americans were in 2003-2004 (regarding Iraq).

Sunny
04-14-2008, 06:27 AM
Also, please explain to me why the primary reason for boycotting them has suddenly shifted to "Free Tibet!"

dude, with all due respect, you're almost too smart to be asking that question. the Tibetan issue is beyond easy to romanticize and care about from afar, and to be outraged about - Buddhist shangri-la raided by armed communist bastards? come on now. it's too easy.

FYI, stuffwhitepeoplelike doesn't feature the Dalai Lama, but it does have "religions our parents don't belong to". ;D

Anyway... personally, I couldn't give a fuck less about the Olympics. I have no intention of watching the games or buying related merchandise. It's not so much of a boycott as much as.. well... total lack of interest.

However,


I'm all for a political boycott, so no government representatives participating and attending the jerkfest ceremonies.

very yes.

Honestly, I think the Bejing Olympics are a farse. Let's google the "Olympic spirit" for shits and giggles, shall we?

"to build a peaceful and better world in the Olympic Spirit which requires mutual understanding with a spirit of friendship, solidarity and fair play - Olympic Spirit strives to inspire and motivate the youth of the world to be the best they can be through educational and entertaining interactive challenges. Olympic Spirit seeks to instill and develop the values and ideals of Olympism in those who visit and to promote tolerance and understanding in these increasingly troubled time in which we live, to make our world a more peaceful place.""

can we say... LOLS?

The Chinese can claim it's supposed to be all about sports until they're blue in the face, but that doesn't change the fact that 1) it's really not and 2) as Mota pointed out, they are being hugely hypocritical.

I am completely and utterly freaked out by China, to tell you the honest truth. My family and I have had some experiences with the communist regime, some of them better than others (my mother had to wait in line for 10 hours to get basic food items; my grandpa, on the other hand, was jailed). Somehow I have developed a deep fear and hatred of communist, repressive, propaganda-driven governments. Fancy that. I am fully expecting someone telling me "O LOL THE US GOVERNMENT IS EVIL TOO". well, yes, I know. moving right along... point being, China scares the shit out of me, from outright denying the things they're guilty of, to their human rights violations, their attempts to limit free speech, their propaganda, you name it. maybe i don't understand the culture. i probably don't. however, i can't help but be creeped out by an atheist government so insane that they attempt to pass a law to regulate and restrict reincarnation.

Anyways. end rant.


And on an unrelated note... I am totally and fully boycotting the 2012 London olympics, because their logo is so atrocious it fills me with blind rage.

IamSam
04-14-2008, 10:21 AM
I think it is all a little childish to be honest. Do you think there wouldn't be protests around the world if it was held in America? I tend to lean with the group that objects to the games being held in China because of their human rights track record. From the sounds of it though, Phelps is going to destroy people at the pool because Speedo has a new suit out that supposedly improves your times by 2%.


What do the protesters hope to accomplish though? UN intervention after the Olympics?

Duskygrin
04-15-2008, 12:25 PM
Fucking boycott them. The Chinese have no sense of private space, political and civil freedom, no sense of shame over Tibetan atrocities and other equally damnable repressive outbursts. They spit everywhere and are freaking disgusting. They will eat us up in one mouthful in the coming decade or two. You'll see. With their 1 billion and 400 million midgets or so, we're a joke next to them. We're already in a beggarly position when it comes to textile and other far more important industries, from IT to construction. We won't go through the boycott, but *sighs* I wish we could. Oh how I wish. The bastards. Well I'm not talking about them all, of course. Some of them are quite decent, even personable, especially the women - men are more dodgy as a rule. In any case, they're universally loathed so I won't make any bones about saying how much I wish they'd get a right old slap in that sallow face of theirs. I find the guy at the head of their gvt to be downright scary. Fancy meeting HIM in a dark alley! I'd probably swoon.

Conclusion: boycott the whole bamboozle. Even that marathonian - the fastest one to the record - said the air was unbreathable and he wouldn't participate. Athletes are more straight-minded than crooked politicians.

wheelchairman
04-16-2008, 03:34 PM
Is it actually constructive to boycott the olympics or China in general though?

I mean is China really the big bad human rights bad guy we make it out to be? Sure it comes nowhere being as nice as the Western world, and I'm certainly not making that argument, in fact even Russia's fledgling democracy has gone past the Chinese in the human rights area.

However what about China 10 years ago? 15 years ago? (which would be after the Tiannaminh square massacre) 20? 30? 40?

I would put forth the argument that China makes great leaps and bounds with the way it treats people in a humanitarian manner. This fact is only compounded by the fact that the olympics themselves have probably been a major catalyst in improving human rights. From the very moment they had the idea.

I would say that China's progression in the recent half century has been forward only (naturally I'm starting after The Great Leap Forward, not before).

The perplexity is that people don't prioritize who they want to beat on the head with a stick when it comes to civil rights. Burma is all but forgotten even though there has been no improvement whatsoever. Darfur is still Darfur. Death squads in the Congo are nothing anyone cares about and it only seems that political scientists and economists are interested in Zimbabwe, despite Zimbabwe's rather innovative approach to Youth Death Squadrons (well a rather dramatic name for the Gezi Guards or the Green Bombers but they essentially were death squads.)

It does seem directly hypocritical to not make any prioritization of what we think is important with regards to civil rights.

Of course prioritizing is a difficult action in itself and I'm not sure why I care. The last time public opinion accomplished anything was in South Africa, since then people can't seem to organize themselves into anything useful to accomplish anything.

EDIT: Oh and before someone tries to take the higher ground, I'm NOT saying that China is a wonderful magic land. Just that there are worse countries out there. Countries that don't attempt to improve their human rights standings.

XYlophonetreeZ
04-16-2008, 03:51 PM
Even though I feel a little bad about belittling the situation in Tibet in my original post, I think I pretty much agree with you 100% Per. Especially with the prioritization part. I think that there are always lots of things that compound the obvious guidelines of where the most deaths and general damage are occurring and which crisis can be more viably resolved. No one gives a shit that the Congo War is the deadliest war since WWII and I honestly don't know why. Burma and Darfur are yesterday's news. Maybe everyone will forget about Tibet soon too. Who knows.

Jesus
04-17-2008, 03:37 AM
Is it actually constructive to boycott the olympics or China in general though?

General boycott no (dictatorships and economics boycotts/sanctions are usually brutal on domestics populations), athletic boycott probably not.
Political boycott most definitely given how much prestige and presence to leaders matters for the Chinese elite in relation to the domestic population.


This fact is only compounded by the fact that the olympics themselves have probably been a major catalyst in improving human rights. From the very moment they had the idea.

Which is the result of other people caring, protesting, fear of loss of prestige etc... If people would be indifferent it wouldn't have mattered.



The perplexity is that people don't prioritize who they want to beat on the head with a stick when it comes to civil rights. Burma is all but forgotten even though there has been no improvement whatsoever. Darfur is still Darfur. Death squads in the Congo are nothing anyone cares about and it only seems that political scientists and economists are interested in Zimbabwe, despite Zimbabwe's rather innovative approach to Youth Death Squadrons (well a rather dramatic name for the Gezi Guards or the Green Bombers but they essentially were death squads.)

It does seem directly hypocritical to not make any prioritization of what we think is important with regards to civil rights.

What you describe is what I basically call the neoliberal defense of inequality, they usually say something like: "why focus on domestic inequality in the Western world when there are so many poor people in the South that are worse of".While there are obvious reasons for focusing on domestic inequality. Namely you can actually have an impact domestically and societies with less domestic inequality have also bigger aid packages and have better results in sustainable development. So it's about feasibility, responsibility and having an impact.

So when you basically end up saying that not focusing on the country that is the worst is hypocritical or unprincipled, I completely disagree. There is nothing principled about ignoring reality and ignoring the possibilities and options within it to have an impact.

So the perplexity is that these people are rational, because of the focus on China as a result of the olympics and the option it creates to actual have an impact. Seriously take the example of a German citizen, who is after all responsible first and foremost for the actions of his own government. How could he have an impact on Burma? Boycott Burma? There's hardly anything to boycott between them. That's reality. While there are many feasible options as a German citizen in regard to China, which are easily achievable and have an impact. Thus you get Merkel not attending the ceremonies, easily achieved political symbol that can have an impact. While if you'd focus all your energy as a German citizen towards Burma you end up achieving nothing. Nothing hypocritical about it.

So prioritizing shouldn't be only based upon which country is the worst. It should also be about who is responsible, which options exist for action and the impact they can have and how much effort is needed. So even for a US citizen a political boycott is a worthwhile goal, cause it doesn't take much effort. The first priority for a US citizen should obviously remain Iraq (cause they are responsible) and how to get the fuck out of there as quick as possible.

wheelchairman
04-17-2008, 04:08 AM
However the main point and premise of my post was the fact that China is the nation making relatively good progress in correcting human rights abuses as opposed to other nations.

So I'm not really sure what you intend to argue here, since you weren't addressing my central point.

Duskygrin
04-17-2008, 10:12 AM
Of course they're making headway. Thank goodness they are. Yet still, the population is as muzzled as ever. Worst of all, we don't care about Darfur and Burma and Zimbabwe because I, for one, can't see the Olympics happening there any time in the offing; and neither of these countries has the political and economic clout wielded by China. In today's world, the one big bugbear, the real hogger of the show is China, not Congo or Cuba.

Also, for a laugh: in China, if you're under death sentence and get executed, your family has to pay for the bullet you were done with.

A penny saved is a penny earned, I say.

XYlophonetreeZ
04-17-2008, 10:35 AM
Maria, I understand what you're saying about Burma and Zimbabwe. I think Per just brought those up as tangential examples. However, you're wrong to include Darfur in that category. People were calling for a boycott long before anything occurred in Tibet because of China's direct involvement in supplying the Sudanese military with weapons. THAT is why people throw around the term "Genocide Olympics." I never meant to belittle the situation in Tibet and I'm sorry if it came off that way. But even though it's terrible, no one would call it a genocide. Darfur is 100% another story. What irks me is when people continue to call them genocide Olympics and then focus their anger entirely on Tibet.

wheelchairman
04-17-2008, 10:55 AM
Actually a note on Burma. During the recent crisis there one of the Danish newspapers discovered that a Danish state-owned investment company was actually invested IN Burma. So I suppose Denmark was one of the few nations that could do something DIRECTLY.

Mota Boy
04-17-2008, 07:47 PM
Oh man, this has the possibility to get really, really ugly. Seriously, the Chinese have had patriotism drilled into them all their lives. The internet does not support an alternate viewpoint (not merely because government censors will track you down, but at this point it's just... consensus... you'll get shouted down by the mob or worse (http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/17/us/17student.html?em&ex=1208577600&en=e767da4f6a75cfec&ei=5087%0A).

This is a generation that has grown up in a rapidly-improving economy that has kept them contented and optimistic, in an atmosphere that just hasn't exposed them to a dissenting viewpoint in certain issues like these. Not only that, but has associated such dissent, especially when it only comes to them in the form of insulting protests from the West, with Western insults of the past, so that they become questions of country. I've seen some of the coverage that's going around the 'net, and it's all inflammatory. Apparently, Chinese "netizens" (the Chinese use this word entirely without irony; it's cute) are calling for a boycott of Carrefour and KFC.

However, on a personal level, so far I've seen them to be really receptive to discussion as long as you're not a fucking moron who meets them head-on on the issue. And once you get them to see things in a slightly new light, the mere fact that they're thinking about it in a different way allows other countervailing opinions to seep in. The key, as in any debate, isn't to focus with the opinions on the issue at hand, because that's just window dressing. The key is to delve out the underlying reasons behind those opinions, where people are less certain (opinions on controversial issues are generally solidified, but the reasons behind those often aren't as well thought-out).


Regarding China's "improvement" however... I don't really see it. I mean, there was a huuuge uptick in human rights the moment Mao kicked the bucket (or, at least, the moment the question of his succession was settled) and the country has certainly made continued strides in opening up, but the main improvements have been economic and come from excess wealth rather than the government ceding on human rights (though they do sometimes cede to public demonstrations, usually it's when the urban wealthy are the demonstrators and over relatively minor issues). To be honest, I do not think that there has been any improvements between the Tiananmen Massacre and today - the difference being that young Chinese today are focused on money rather than politics and that the Chinese have gotten very efficient at stifling protest, especially at Tiananmen. Oh, and as I've explained before, I actually somewhat (key word here being somewhat) sympathize with the government side on the Massacre.

F@ BANKZ
04-26-2008, 08:00 AM
I think that it could prove disastrous for The Olympics if this one was stopped. China wouldn't come to London, then other nations could opt out for all sorts of reasons. While I think that would be a terrible shame, I believe that anything that can be done to reduce the violence in Tibet should be done. Relationships with China will be damaged also, but no "civilised" nation should simply turn a blind eye to something so severe.

IamSam
04-27-2008, 12:45 AM
We raise all this fuss for China and their internal problems while they fuel the genocide in Darfur by supplying the Sudanese government with 90% of all their weapons. We stand idly by with our thumbs up our asses because we are wholly devoted to Iraq, a region which would have been fine if it wasn't for us buggering it.

Jesus
04-29-2008, 10:17 AM
However the main point and premise of my post was the fact that China is the nation making relatively good progress in correcting human rights abuses as opposed to other nations.

So I'm not really sure what you intend to argue here, since you weren't addressing my central point.

Sure I was, I considered 1) whether China made 'progress' in regard to other countries and 2) people not prioritizing which country is the worst, both to be pretty much irrelevant in regard to activism, protesting and boycotts when one wants to accomplish anything.


We raise all this fuss for China and their internal problems while they fuel the genocide in Darfur by supplying the Sudanese government with 90% of all their weapons. We stand idly by with our thumbs up our asses because we are wholly devoted to Iraq, a region which would have been fine if it wasn't for us buggering it.
Yup (although I doubt it would be fine) or Palestine. You could replace China with Israel and Tibet with Palestine in most of the arguments the Dems make.

JoY
05-21-2008, 01:43 AM
I find this interesting material that could add to the discussion: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xsoc4-QnplY

Komaschwarz
05-21-2008, 11:44 AM
I've seen a lot of paper articles around my town which are outright defending the athletes; saying that they've trained really hard for a few months, so who are we to boycott the Olympics?

If I encounter anyone who actually says this to me in person, I'm going to punch them in the fucking head.

Let's weigh this: Orwellian government with a history of abusing pacifists and dissenters, oppressing its people for centuries, along with sponsoring arms wars, and setting the stage for state sponsored genocide vs. a few hundred jocks that can't swim or run on national television for a shiny medal and some sponsor money.

I don't even see where the controversy lies in this. I'm glad to see a lot of people on this forum supporting the boycott.

Duskygrin
05-21-2008, 12:07 PM
Before that rag tells us we ought to respect athletes, they might find it useful to actually wonder if ALL the athletes are anti-boycott in the first place.

Mota Boy
05-21-2008, 03:40 PM
If I encounter anyone who actually says this to me in person, I'm going to punch them in the fucking head.Tis a pity we don't live in the same city. I'm looking for a sparring partner.


Let's weigh this: Orwellian government with a history of abusing pacifists and dissenters, oppressing its people for centuries, along with sponsoring arms wars, and setting the stage for state sponsored genocide vs. a few hundred jocks that can't swim or run on national television for a shiny medal and some sponsor money.First off, China hasn't had the same government for centuries, but rather had at least three distinct governments in the 20th century alone. The current government dates to 1949 if you're talking about the CCP, but personally I'd argue 1977. Secondly, the United States engages in torture without trial, and has recently illegally invaded a foreign nation on false pretenses, resulting in tens of thousands of deaths. By the way, this is the same "government" (using your loose version of the term) that invaded 'Nam, massacred Indians and enforced slavery and has a history of abusing pacifists and dissenters, if we're gonna hold nations accountable for historical crimes. Would you be calling for a boycott if the games were held in New York? Thirdly, the issue is that the Olympics is a symbol of international unity ideally devoid of politics. Fourthly, what the fuck does boycotting accomplish? The people it harms the most are the athletes of the boycotting nation. Athletes who, by the way, do not train for "a few months" but rather dedicate their entire lives to their sport. Boycotting the Olympics would not harm China. It would not cause the government to change any policies. In fact, it would make it less likely that anything would chance because the government would not want to be seen as bowing to pressure from foreign powers, and the Chinese public would only villainize the US. What, you think they would pause, take a careful account of their actions and humbly announce that they've had a change of heart? All a boycott would accomplish is sending a "fuck you" to China. That may be fine and dandy when professing outrage on message boards, but is rather juvenile and myopic in international relations.


I don't even see where the controversy lies in this.At least we agree on one thing.


Before that rag tells us we ought to respect athletes, they might find it useful to actually wonder if ALL the athletes are anti-boycott in the first place.Olympians are a self-selecting group. The pro-boycott athletes would not be participating in the first place.

Duh.

Duskygrin
05-22-2008, 10:46 AM
Here's a gem... For anyone with some French it will be hilarious http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-kOGNTl7eyE&eurl=http://apps.facebook.com/superwall/view.php?newsfeed=1&id=804449253&owner_id=78802736

Here's the English translation:

Anchorman: 'Foreign policy now, with us is Mr Rodolphe Aprikian, Foreign Secretary. Good evening Mr Aprikian, you're come to answer the raging question: "Is France to boycott the Beijing Olympics?" in light of the recent Tibetan crisis.'

[...] it skips some and then the FS answers

FS: 'French athletes will be flaunting a superb badge, inscribed "for a better world".

Anchorman: 'Maybe, but we're waiting for action, not vain talk, France must react, it's a Human Rights country, after all, this badge is mere political show, just a fašade, France must do sth more.'
FS: 'Of course. We understand the Tibetans.'
Anchorman: 'They cannot work freely, in Tibet.'
FS: 'Hmm. Of course. But it's not that simple...'
A: 'No but I mean, is the law in this day and hour, in Tibet... ?'
FS: 'We are the first to acknowledge...'
*anger building up*
A: 'They're getting massacred, in Tibet.'
FS: '... why the Tibetans? What's with the Tibetans? Why are you getting up our arses with the Tibetans? They've been butchered for the past 50 years and noone gave a fuck and there, suddenly, you wake up with a "The Tibetans!" That's because of the Olympics, right? What is it, then? Wanna boycott the Olympics? Wanna boycott China? Well ok. But you boycott everything, then. Except everybody will end up naked 'cause EVERYTHING in here is "made in China"! Here it's made in China! *sweeps room* This is made in China! *points to chair* Your mike is made in China! *points to mike* Your tie huh, your trousers, your 1€ underpants are made in China! *points to anchorman* Why is your underpants only 1€, hmm? Rather cheap, 1€, hmm? 'Cause the dude who makes your 1€ underpants is working IN CHINA *points away* he's payed 15 cents an hour with a gun on his temples and he's got no choice. 'Cause between us, if he had the choice, he'd be a lawyer or a doctor, he wouldn't be making underpants. So if we don't boycott them what do we do? Why don't we attack them directly, confront them, hmm? To teach them democracy, huh? We'll give them a sound thrashing, those Chinese basts! Except thrash one billion Chinese, guess it's gonna be complicated, no? We can't even free a Columbian communist bitch held hostage by 3 gits in the middle of the jungle coz we don't have a penny anymore because of the subprime crisis of those stupid Yankees whose asses we lick because we're right fucking losers! *calms down* So honestly. Honestly. The religious freedom of a tribe of idiots in togas and flip-flops, dancing with sticks in the Himalayan mountains. We do not give a fuck about.

HornyPope
05-22-2008, 09:38 PM
I find this interesting material that could add to the discussion: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xsoc4-QnplY

Did you even watch that? It's pure propaganda and nothing else.

JoY
06-04-2008, 09:15 AM
First off, China hasn't had the same government for centuries, but rather had at least three distinct governments in the 20th century alone. The current government dates to 1949 if you're talking about the CCP, but personally I'd argue 1977. Secondly, the United States engages in torture without trial, and has recently illegally invaded a foreign nation on false pretenses, resulting in tens of thousands of deaths. By the way, this is the same "government" (using your loose version of the term) that invaded 'Nam, massacred Indians and enforced slavery and has a history of abusing pacifists and dissenters, if we're gonna hold nations accountable for historical crimes. Would you be calling for a boycott if the games were held in New York? Thirdly, the issue is that the Olympics is a symbol of international unity ideally devoid of politics. Fourthly, what the fuck does boycotting accomplish? The people it harms the most are the athletes of the boycotting nation. Athletes who, by the way, do not train for "a few months" but rather dedicate their entire lives to their sport. Boycotting the Olympics would not harm China. It would not cause the government to change any policies. In fact, it would make it less likely that anything would chance because the government would not want to be seen as bowing to pressure from foreign powers, and the Chinese public would only villainize the US. What, you think they would pause, take a careful account of their actions and humbly announce that they've had a change of heart? All a boycott would accomplish is sending a "fuck you" to China. That may be fine and dandy when professing outrage on message boards, but is rather juvenile and myopic in international relations.



wholeheartly agreed.
what's objectively seeing the thought behind this entire boycott, anyway? "let's boycott an international sports event, because it takes place in China. that'll teach 'em a political lesson!!" what, no. it pisses them off. seriously, that really can't be it, because this world can not justify being as retarded to think that would work.

if the world turns it's back on China, China will do the same to the world. as would I in such a situation, by the way. it's a pretty natural response. behavioural psychology on this level isn't very difficult to understand. but if I turned my back on the world, there wouldn't be quite as many consequences, certainly not on an international level, as when one of the biggest, most influential countries does. whatever "turning your back on" implies in either situation, let's just establish that the international relations with China will become significantly less smooth in every way, if by numorous countries this propaganda-driven boycott will be realised.

collectively boycotting the Olympics for political reasons is a typical playground situation. it's like collectively boycotting a kid's birthday, because his mother votes for Hillary. or is Hillary. that doesn't teach the kid a lesson, it works on the kid's emotions. it's a ridiculous comparison, but I imagine the point is not too difficult to understand.

I do not see any bright sides to bluntly undertaking action to punish an ENTIRE country in an area that has nothing to do with what you're punishing it for. & it's not exactly like the whole of China suddenly deserves such a hateful approach. if you want to provide a lesson, change behaviour, by punishing incorrect behaviour, instinctively even the dumbest of mothers would know handing out a random punishment at a random occasion isn't effective. for one, this political situation isn't something that recently started to exist out of nowhere. secondly, it is in no way connected to the Olympic games. the Olympics are in no way connected to China in particular, it's only planned they're being held in China. the Olympics are in no way connected to China politically. the Olympics are not to be used as a tool to take a political standpoint. is anyone not following this?

if you want to undertake action & fling your morals around like freakin' confetti, that's just great, but for god's sake, let it make sense.

right, I didn't word that as well as Mota managed to do, but I wanted to get it off my chest anyway.
& I also agree on your point regarding athletes. as you said, they dedicate their lives to their sport. on this level, it's not a freakin' hobby, it's their profession, their income, their bread on the table. it's what they do & who they are. they sacrifice a whole lot to achieve as much as they do.


Did you even watch that? It's pure propaganda and nothing else.

I've seen it & "objective" wasn't exactly the word to describe it. that doesn't mean it couldn't add to the discussion. it's something different from the pro-boycott propaganda for a change, which I thought to be quite refreshing. even if it is propaganda.

Jesus
06-04-2008, 01:01 PM
the Olympics are in no way connected to China in particular, it's only planned they're being held in China. the Olympics are in no way connected to China politically.
You serious?

I'll just be lazy and c/p Mota Boy
The Chinese government is being ridiculous when it announces that politics have no place in the Olympics, that it's just about sports. For years, the government has been running an ad campaign, using the Olympics as a source of Chinese pride, as a call to Chinese unity. The government is also using it as a sort of coming-out party, as a chance to showcase to the world China as a global power, as a first-world nation.

Just boycott it politically, by not having your foreign affairs minister/president/prime minister fly over for a day for a snapshot moment. And let the athletes compete.

Sunny
06-05-2008, 07:33 AM
if you want to undertake action & fling your morals around like freakin' confetti, that's just great, but for god's sake, let it make sense.

i could say the same thing about criticizing other people's actions without knowing the background behind it =p as mota and jesus already pointed out, the bejing olympics have *everything* to do with chinese political agenda. sure, the concept of "magical athletez competing in a neutral environment with no underlying political themes" is pretty lovely to think about, but right now, it's just a fairy tale.

batfish
06-05-2008, 10:53 AM
Here's a gem... For anyone with some French it will be hilarious http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-kOGNTl7eyE&eurl=http://apps.facebook.com/superwall/view.php?newsfeed=1&id=804449253&owner_id=78802736


Is that real? Is that the real French foriegn minister? That's amazing if it is. I loved that speech!
I have some French but there is no way in hell I could have translated it - I caught the first bit until he started ranting and then only "sub prime" haha

Duskygrin
06-05-2008, 03:45 PM
Well, no, it's not the real deal there. Just actors. Good actors I suspect. And it wasn't even broadcast on a big channel - nobody in the business would accept to put that on primetime - but the channel it got to was decent and so well... lots of people watched it, and lots of people agreed. It's hilarious coz he goes completely berserk on stage, but it's also and more profoundly, sadly true: watch us boycott China and walk naked in the streets. EVERYTHING is made in China. Everything. *kicks bin*

HornyPope
06-05-2008, 09:47 PM
I've seen it & "objective" wasn't exactly the word to describe it. that doesn't mean it couldn't add to the discussion. it's something different from the pro-boycott propaganda for a change, which I thought to be quite refreshing. even if it is propaganda.

That's just playing devils advocate. Not cool, Bella. Not cool at all. Personally, I'll never argue with you for the sake of the argument.


Well, no, it's not the real deal there. Just actors. Good actors I suspect. And it wasn't even broadcast on a big channel - nobody in the business would accept to put that on primetime - but the channel it got to was decent and so well... lots of people watched it, and lots of people agreed. It's hilarious coz he goes completely berserk on stage, but it's also and more profoundly, sadly true: watch us boycott China and walk naked in the streets. EVERYTHING is made in China. Everything. *kicks bin*

I think that's a lot of words and not as much substance. Yeah, he makes a point, but isn't it easier to say : "our French colonial history (the effects of which are felt to this day in the four corners of the world) was probably even worse than what the Chinese have done?"

If I read that sentence really, really fast, I can pronounce it in under 5 seconds.

T-6005
06-06-2008, 07:58 AM
Here's a gem... For anyone with some French it will be hilarious http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-kOGNTl7eyE&eurl=http://apps.facebook.com/superwall/view.php?newsfeed=1&id=804449253&owner_id=78802736


Fantastic video.

Drafan
06-08-2008, 04:33 AM
I┤m against boycott. Olympic games helped them a bit to change. Just keep on telling them: Leave Tibet!

JoY
06-11-2008, 04:39 AM
You serious?

I'll just be lazy and c/p Mota Boy
The Chinese government is being ridiculous when it announces that politics have no place in the Olympics, that it's just about sports. For years, the government has been running an ad campaign, using the Olympics as a source of Chinese pride, as a call to Chinese unity. The government is also using it as a sort of coming-out party, as a chance to showcase to the world China as a global power, as a first-world nation.

Just boycott it politically, by not having your foreign affairs minister/president/prime minister fly over for a day for a snapshot moment. And let the athletes compete.


i could say the same thing about criticizing other people's actions without knowing the background behind it =p as mota and jesus already pointed out, the bejing olympics have *everything* to do with chinese political agenda. sure, the concept of "magical athletez competing in a neutral environment with no underlying political themes" is pretty lovely to think about, but right now, it's just a fairy tale.

I'll just reply to you both at the same time (sorry, you both deserve special attention, but it'd be the same argument twice). what I meant is what you're basically saying, Sunny. in an ideal world, politics objectively don't have anything to do with the Olympics. that doesn't mean the Olympics haven't been drawn into political issues. the Olympics shouldn't be a tool to express political views, or to take political actions. they just shouldn't be a political tool & it shouldn't be tolerated that the Olympics are (ab)used in that context for national gain, of whatever nation. I feel like the Olympics will be irreversibly connected to politics & that politics might even dominate the Olympics, if we confirm the current made connection between the two, by boycotting the Olympics for political reasons.

oh boy, it's just an opinion, just a thought. I just don't think in the end this will be as effective as we'd like it to be & I don't think this is the most effective way to handle this. it's good that a door has been opened & that there's conversation about the topic, but I do feel it should've been done another way.


That's just playing devils advocate. Not cool, Bella. Not cool at all. Personally, I'll never argue with you for the sake of the argument.


you'll have to explain that last bit to me.