EDITORIAL: The Looming Sochi Disaster

EDITORIAL

The Looming Sochi Disaster

Russia has begun the Winter Olympiad with truly epic and humiliating failure.

First, as we previously reported, it was sternly reprimanded by the IOC for being the worst cheater at the games.  Then it was totally excluded from the medals platform at its most prized event, pairs figure skating, for the first time in the history of the event.  By Monday night, when Russians watched Chinese skaters claim both gold and silver in pairs, Russia had taken only one medal, a lowly bronze, while the US had eight, Germany five, France & Canada had four apiece and eight other countries held more than one medal, placing Russia well outside the top ten on the medal count platform in the early going.  Then for the capper, the US women’s hockey team brutally crushed the Russian side, blasting them off the ice in a 13-0 spanking.  Ouch.

Yet, four years from now, Russia not only plans to compete in but to host the Winter Olympics. When one reflects on the serious difficulties already experienced by Canada while playing host this year, one cannot help but think Russia is engaged in a fool’s errand.

At the opening ceremonies, one of the four cauldrons of fire that were supposed to rise dramatically from below the stage to be lit by a famous athlete experienced a mechanical failure.

Then a Georgian luge athlete was killed during a practice run, a crucial safety wall having been left unbuilt on a track that was horrifically dangerous, producing unheardof speeds.

Next, snow conditions deteriorated so much that a key skiing venue had to be closed to spectators because of the danger, and the world’s most famous halfpipe snowboarders began ridiculing the condition of their apparatus.

And finally, there was a total failure of ice maintenance at the speed-skating oval, resulting in a delay of hours as coaches complained vehemently about danger to their athletes from improperly prepared rink surfaces.

Oh, and that was all on the opening weekend alone.

Now consider just a few key differences between Canada and Russia:

  • Canada has a per capita nominal GDP of $39,217 which ranks it #18 on the planet according to the IMF.   Russia’s figure stands at a lowly $8,874 –  less than a quarter of Canada’s figure — and ranks Russia #54.
  • Canada is #8 on the Transparency International list of honest nations, only seven world countries are less corrupt than Canada.  Russia by contrast ranks #146 — only a handful of nations are more corrupt than Russia.
  • Canada, you may already know, does not have a region like the Caucasus seething and roiling with daily terrorist violence aimed at government officials and police officers motivated by a furious desire to live separately from an oppressive, racist, dictatorial autocracy.  It has Montreal.

So we ask you: If Canada, civilized and wealthy, had so much trouble staging the 2010 games, then what will become of the next winter Olympics in 2014, games that are to be held in Russia?

This is to say nothing, of course, about the naked immorality of allowing Russia to host the games after invading Georgia, menacing Ukraine with energy blackmail and repeatedly provoking the USA with nuclear bombers.  It is to say nothing of ignoring Russia’s shameless crackdown on civil society, it’s obliteration of opposition parties, free media and local government.

Taking all these factors together, there is no other word for vesting Russia with the 2014 Winter Olympiad than:  Insane.

58 responses to “EDITORIAL: The Looming Sochi Disaster

  1. Stephanie Barbosa

    canada defeated slovakia 18-0 and us destroyed china 13-0 in women`s hockey.

    i guess daft rubes like you have no clue that women`s hockey is a two nation game; canada and us.

    you know, we canadians should just nuke russia, slovakia and china for not knowing how to put those pucks in the net on the powerplay.

    russophobe, just pull out the razor case and end it.

    LA RUSSOPHOBE RESPONDS:

    Gosh, you’re stupid.

    Are you really unable to see that Russia, which places ice hockey second only to pairs skating, is failing utterly to develop its women’s game to be competitive with the US? If Russia doesn’t want to compete, why does it field a women’s team?

    Are you really unable to see that making statements like “pull out the razor case” (and other crude, vulgar, apelike remarks so offensive and repellent that we deleted them) you are making it quite clear this post touched a nerve and renders you unable to respond with anything short of threats of violence?

    If you think Russia doesn’t care about being obliterated by the US in hockey, you’re truly demented. Russia is a violently sexist society where one woman is murdered by her husband every 30 minutes. If you think issues of sexism and repression of women are not important in Russia, you are a pathetic chauvanist thug.

    If you continue your rude, vulgar pornography, we’ll simply ban you from commenting further. It’s sad that you can’t behave more like a proper guest. If you want to spew forth vomit that makes Russia look like a nation of apes, make your own blog and see how many people will read it. Otherwise, try to use at least a little common sense in how you behave on someone else’s blog.

    • If both Russia and Finland are excluded from the “two country” class, then they are equal.

      Yet the Finns just brutally crushed Russia:

      http://www.themoscowtimes.com/olympic_coverage/article/womens-ice-hockey-finland-routs-russia-5-1/399779.html

      So much for your “brain,” idiot.

      • Stephanie Barbosa

        is that the only ammo you have after i’ve dissected your entire post like a worm in a grade 9 biology class?

        WEAK! why am i surprised.

        but just to explain to you, since you clearly aren’t a Canadian and know jack squat about hockey

        current women’s game is split into:
        Tier 1 teams: Canada/US
        Tier 2 teams: Sweden/Finland
        and the rest: Russia/China/Germany/Slovakia/Czech etcetcetc

        Also, Finland has won the bronze in woman’s hockey for the past several tournaments.

        Russia was not active in international women’s hockey until just 1994. They started their national team at the beginning of January 1994 in St. Petersburg.

        Finnish national Women’s league was first started in 1983. There are now 8 teams in the Finnish National league, and 12 teams in the 1st Division.

        Thanks for coming out and FAILING.

        AGAIN! You obsessed yokel.

        • It seems you know nothing about ice-hockey. Women’s ice-hockey in Finland isn’t very popular and the players are not professional. Ringette is much more popular among Finnish women. Still they manage to beat RuSSians every time. Not bad because Finnish population is 5,3 million people and RuSSians about 142 million.

          Anyway, Canada and the USA are definitely the best teams in the world. RuSSia sucks again.

          • Stephanie Barbosa

            Just like the russophobe, you lack basic reading comprehension skills.

            I never stated or insinuated that woman’s hockey was popular in Finland. I never stated that women’s hockey was more or less popular than other sports because that’s irrelevant to the topic at hand.

            FACT – Finland has a women’s league.
            FACT – Finland’s women started playing hockey in early 80’s
            FACT – Russia doesn’t have a league
            FACT – Russia played it’s first ever women’s hockey game in 1994, losing 2-1 to Switzerland.
            FACT – Russia upset Finland 2-1 in the bronze medal game of the 2001 Women’s World Championships

            FACT – Finland is much more experience than Russia in women’s hockey and has been present in women’s hockey for much longer.

            FACT – USA trunced Sweden 13-0 yesterday, yet noone’s insinuating that they are incapable apewomen.

            FACT – Women’s hockey is currently at the stages of international development equivalent to that of early 1950’s in men’s hockey.

            Dispute THIS you daft boor LOL

            • You know nothing about ice-hockey. During the 80’s Finland had only about 100 female ice-hockey players, none of them were professional. The league was and is still very small.

              FACT: Number of registered players: RuSSia 84 720, Finland: 61 684.

              FACT: Finland crushes RuSSia every time eventhough there are much more players in RuSSia.

              FACT: A couple of days Finland crushed again Putler’s whores 5-1.

            • Stephanie, you really should read your own posts. You can’t claim at one and the same time that Russian players are great enough to beat Finland in an upset and also so terrible that they can’t be expected to beat anyone. It simply doesn’t make sense. You’re babbling like a crazy child.

              You really ought to at least try to read our post as well. You can’t argue against a point we didn’t make. Russia has had EXACTLY THE SAME CHANCE as Finland to develop a women’s hockey program, YET IT HAS NOT DONE SO. That is failure, and the losses that result are humiliation. Russia takes great pride in hockey yet it is has TOTALLY FAILED to create a credible women’s game. THAT was our point and you can’t dispute the cold hard results that prove us right.

              Your comment about Sweden is fully insane. Of COURSE Sweden was humiliated, BUT THIS BLOG IS ABOUT RUSSIA YOU HOPELESS BLOCKHEAD. We are not interested in Sweden so we don’t write about it. If you want to make a blog about Sweden go ahead and try. But you are so hopelessly incompetent making a good blog about anything is light years beyond your grasp.

      • [If both Russia and Finland are excluded from the “two country” class, then they are equal.]

        I like this logic. It’s like saying that all people, who were rejected from Harvard, are equal.

        Are you a Harvard graduate?

  2. that’s funny Stephanie..
    and… the cost of these winter games is more than 6 billion dollars, of this, more than 1 billion is in security. Will Russian have its security apparatus at work for these Sochi games? how calming…

  3. Another crazy editorial.

    First off, the games are far from over, with some 10 days of competition left. Oh, and today Plushenko won the Men´s short program in figure skating. That guy is gonna take the gold, so relax.

    Also you ought to wait to Men´s Ice Hockey where the bulk of Russian players are some of the top NHL players.

    And again a quick history lesson here for you on the medals in the Winter Olympics:

    1956 [Soviet debut in winter games]:

    USSR 16 medals [#1]
    USA 7 medals [#6]

    1960:
    USSR 21 medals [#1]
    USA 10 medals [#3]

    1964:
    USSR 25 medals [#1]
    USA 6 medals [# 8]

    1968:
    USSR 13 medals [#2, behind Norwat with 14 medals]
    USA 7 medals [#9]

    1972:
    USSR 16 medals [#1]
    USA 8 medals [# 8]

    1976:
    USSR 27 medals [#1]
    USA 7 medals [# 3]

    1980:
    USSR 22 medals [#1]
    USA 12 medals [#3]

    1984:
    USSR 25 medals [# 2, behind East Germany with 24 medals -one less than USSR, but more golds].
    USA 8 medals [#3]

    1988:
    USSR 28 medals [#1]
    USA 6 medals [#9] ummm…Ouch!

    1992:
    Unified Team 23 medals [#2 behind Germany with 26 medals]
    USA 11 medals [#11]

    Post-USSR

    1994
    Russia 23 medals [#1]
    USA 13 medals [#5]

    [So Russia´s dominance goes on after the break up of the USSR]

    1998:
    Russia: 18 medals [#3, first significant “diminishing return” for Russia, but above the US]
    USA: 13 medals [#5]

    2002 [First time the US surpasses Russia in winter olympics]

    USA: 34 medals [#3]
    Russia: 13 medals [#5]

    2006
    USA: 25 medals [#2]
    Russia: 23 medals [#3]

    So…the conclusions? What an extraordinary and fascinating commitment with superior sportsmanship, excellence, and victory displayed by the athletes of the USSR.

    Between 1956 and 1992, not one single time could the USA surpass the USSR in total medals, NOT ONE TIME. So the Soviet were even more brutally dominant in the Winter games than they were in Summer games.

    Even for 1994 in Lillehammer and 1998 in Nagano, Russia still remained above the USA in winter olympics.

    So the new era of triumph of the US over Russia in winters is quite a new thing, only 2002 and 2006 [only a 2 medal difference there] and the USA has never been # 1 in the Winter Olympics medal table whereas the USSR was #1 in 7 times from a total of 1o winter games.

    So, relax, the USA is doing very well so far but wait for more 10 of competition.

    LA RUSSOPHOBE RESPONDS:

    “extraordinary and fascinating commitment with superior sportsmanship”

    Actually, the USSR was famous for cheating, just like Russia, and for using athletes who were actually professionals whereas the West followed the Olympic spirit and used amateurs. What’s more, the USSR was a GROUP of nations, including what is now Ukraine, Georgia, Belarus and many others, so to fairly compare it to the USA you would have to make the USA part of a group too, adding Canada just for starters.

    It’s really sad that you can’t see that even as you call for accuracy and fairness your own analysis is totally one-sided propaganda.

    It’s also sad that you can’t see you are simply changing the subject from Russia to the USSR. This post isn’t about the USSR, it’s about failure in Vladimir Putin’s Russia. Just as in Soviet times, rather than help Russia to face its failure, reform and improve, you are enabling more failure and national collapse. That’s a real tragedy.

  4. The comparison between the old USSR and the U.S. is totally meaningless, as in those years the Soviets sent professionals disguised as amateurs (remember, professionals were not allowed then), while we Americans sent college students

  5. Regarding the Sochi games I think it would be lucky if any athletes show up let alone spectators. Putin has made such a mess of things that who would want to risk it??

  6. Nice post Robert.

  7. Stephanie Barbosa

    sorry….reposting because your blog removes sentences in quotes…

    *****Are you really unable to see that Russia, which places ice hockey second only to pairs skating, is failing utterly to develop its women’s game to be competitive with the US?****

    It’s woman’s hockey. Who cares? LOL. And I’m a woman (a Portuguese Canadian one at that). Maybe one day when women’s hockey program can field an interesting tournament featuring more than 2 competitive teams in a competitive format, I would be more interested to watch it or care about it. Are YOU really unable to see that Canada and USA has set the standard for women’s hockey for the world and the world only recently started to catch up to it? That catch up group includes countries OTHER than USA or Canada.

    If you knew anything about hockey, you would know that in the 20’s 30’s and 40’s when it was essentially a 1 country game, men’s teams were getting destroyed by Canada 32-0 at the Olympics. It took good 40+ years for the rest of the World to catch up to the level of Canada and any knowledgeable hockey fan would tell you that USSR were the first to challenge Canada and injected the level of competition into hockey that inspired and influenced the rest of the now strong nations to love, grow and participate in this game.

    What makes you think that in 30+ years other countries will not catch up to the women’s mark of success set by US and Canadian women over the past 15-20 years? Do you think this is done overnight? If you do, then it is you who is truly demented.

    ****If Russia doesn’t want to compete, why does it field a women’s team?****

    Why does Brazil want to compete in cross country skiing? Why is team Pakistan at these Olympics? Why is China, the world’s rising dragon is getting smoked just as badly? Why was there a Jamaican bobsleigh team? Because EVERYONE wants to compete but not everyone is equipped to win and be the best. Your logic is skewed.

    *****Are you really unable to see that making statements like “pull out the razor case” (and other crude, vulgar, apelike remarks so offensive and repellent that we deleted them)*****

    As opposed to the comments you make to YOUR readers who comment on your blog, which are so non-condescending, progressive and inspiring? LOL spare me. Your ego just hates being OWNED at the game you started.

    *****you unable to respond with anything short of threats of violence?****

    Violence? How is suggesting you to kill yourself any form of a threat or violence? Do you know law? Take a print screen of my post and take it to court. Sue me for the exact same thing you’ve just accused me of. You will get LAUGHED OUT just as quickly as you came in.

    *****If you think Russia doesn’t care about being obliterated by the US in hockey, you’re truly demented. ******

    Of course they care. And they’ll probably work for the next 20+ years to improve the level of women’s play. Just like all other participating countries other than the US and Canada.

    *****Russia is a violently sexist society where one woman is murdered by her husband every 30 minutes. If you think issues of sexism and repression of women are not important in Russia, you are a pathetic chauvanist thug.*****

    How is this relevant to ANYTHING going on in this discussion? Is your inability to carry on a topical conversation derailing you into an off-topic world? Hey, if you think that the Toronto Maple Leafs are not suffering from constant mismanagement, you are a pathetic fanboy (wait, what?? LOL). Oh yeah, and learn how to spell chauvinist.

    ****If you continue your rude, vulgar pornography, we’ll simply ban you from commenting further. It’s sad that you can’t behave more like a proper guest. If you want to spew forth vomit that makes Russia look like a nation of apes****

    How is anything I write make Russia look like the nation of apes? I’m not Russian or even a Slav so that’s not possible. Way out of the door goes another one of your demented logics LOL
    I’m just continuing to expose you for the Nazi that you are. It is one thing to hate on Russia’s government, people who support it, mentality of some Russians (at no fault of their own but as a result of being misled, cheated and mistreated for years) and it’s another thing to blatantly hate on anything Russian and basket the entire Russian gene and ANYTHING that has to do with it as incompetent, inferior and plebeian. Anyone who looks at ANYONE with such superiority and hate is just as bad as those who commit war crimes, genocide etc. Face it, you Nazi *****, you don’t want Russia to change you want the entire Russian race to be wiped out from the face of this earth.

    Scum. That’s what you are.

    And if this post gets deleted or censored, you are just as bad at freedom of opinions as those you oh hate so much.

  8. LA RUSSOPHOBE:

    “your own analysis is totally one-sided propaganda.”

    One-sided propaganda?? And what do you call this blog? You are not serious are you…LOL

    In some articles the points you are trying to make are 100% correct, but in the same editorial you seem to lose control of your ideas and start throwing extra-garbage into the paragraphs [like distortions and lies].

    And i am basing this assertion on what i´ve read here about your criticism of Russian sports. If your sports “analysis” follows the insane direction i am referring to then i have sufficient elements to conclude that any other type of analysis you make about Russia (politics, economics, culture, etc, etc) is likewise flawed and/or distorted.

    I am a sportsman who thinks a fit, strong, healthy body when managed/used properly and smartly can help you attain every other personal, family, cultural, economic, and professional goal in your life, pretty much the philosophy of the Soviet society during the cold war era.

    And i am not changing any subject: i do not talk about politics because i do not care about politics. Politicians are crooks and criminals here, there, everywhere.

    I talk of the USSR because it was during the USSR era when the sports system and culture still existing in Russia was founded and implemented. [Yes, the system has suffered after the USSR break up but its heritage it´s still present there]

    If we´re going to talk about sports in present-day Russia, it´s unavoidable to bring up the USSR into the discussion.

    And you have to believe me: reality is a bit more complex and intricate than your conclusions Soviet supreme success in Olympics was due to “cheating”, but i am not here to make you change your mind.

    Too bad i was only a little child when the USSR broke up.

    I watch videos and videos of the athletics and gymnastics Olympic competitions during the Soviet Union era and i find them completely fascinating. I wish i had been an adult during those days.

    That was anticipation and excitement, the mighty clash East vs West every 4 years. Memorable competitions between Soviets and American in athletics [not in gymnastics though, were America was a zero factor].

    See the opening ceremony of the Moscow 80 games, you will find nothing that will surpass the aesthetic beauty attained by those hundreds of little boys and girls and young men doing gymnastic exercises.

    That era was so good in sports, so good it can never be repeated. When i see the present-day competitions i find them pretty boring in fact.

  9. I do not see how you can long for the USSR which was built on the slave labor of eastern Europe. Does freedom mean nothing to you???

    Russia is not capable of freedom which requires restraint and a respect for law. But they could at least demand better than a low life like Putin who murders journalists.

    • @built on the slave labor of Eastern Europe. ROFLMAO.

      If you knew anything about history, you might know that the authorities in Moscow subsidized the East European nations to the detriment of their own population. People in Czechoslovakia had consumer goods and public services that people in the USSR proper could only dream of. They also worked less and got more vacation time.
      As for Putin killing journalists, when you can show me that he had any connection to the deaths of any journalist, you shoot me a message. In the absence of EVIDENCE, lay off the corporate media agitrprop.

      • Typical Russian BS.

        Russia stole resources from the non Russian republics of the USSR, and used repression and intimidation to keep them under control.

        Russia practiced “Russification” attempting to destroy the native languages and culture of non Russian republics by “downgrading” the status of non Russian languages over time, thereby reducing their right to be taught in the schools of non Russian republics.

        Far from “subsidising” non Russian Soviet republics and the occupied nations of eastern Europe, Russia asset stripped them and repressed them for nearl 50 years (in the case of eastern Europe) and for over 200 in the case of many former Soviet Republics.

        One only has to look at the massive increase in the standard of living in places like Poland to see how Russia retarded the development and prosperity of those it opressed.

      • If you knew anything about history, you might know that the authorities in Berlin subsidized the Reichskommissariat Ostland to the detriment of their own population. People in Reichskommissariat Ostland had consumer goods and public services that people in the Third Reich proper could only dream of. They also worked less and got more vacation time.
        As for Hitler killing Soviets, when you can show me that he had any connection to the deaths of any Soviet, you shoot me a message. In the absence of EVIDENCE, lay off the Kremlin media agitrprop.

        You know what? This is awesome. Let’s do more. Jeff Foxworthy is hilarious. Borscht is a culinary orgasm. Putin can’t be an inch under six-two. I just can’t watch Solaris enough times. Given the chance, I couldn’t resist the urge to rub Angela Merkel’s shoulders either.

      • Nikita, that’s nonsense. For instance, the USSR would get consumer goods from Eastern European countries (say, wine, furniture etc) and either not pay, or pay ridiculously small prices, so Soviet citizens can have an easy life. And that’s only one example of how the USSR exploited Eastern Europe. And let’s not forget what the USSR did following World War II in Romania: they dismantled much of the Romanian industry and moved it to Russia, and essentially bled Romania dry for years, through things like the Sovroms: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SovRom

        Face the truth, the easy life that Russians enjoyed during Soviet days was based on the work and suffering of other nations.

      • nikita wrote;

        If you knew anything about history, you might know that the authorities in Moscow subsidized the East European nations to the detriment of their own population. People in Czechoslovakia had consumer goods and public services that people in the USSR proper could only dream of. They also worked less and got more vacation time.

        comment;

        what a sh..ty soviet/russian propaganda, what a disgrace!! Soviet occupied countries of Central and Eastern Europe were the total soviet colonies countries – RUSSIANS STOLE EVERYTHING FROM THOSE COUNTRIES in order to finance the indepencece wars from so called, colonialism all over the world and feed their own starving population. I was once on the soviet union [NEVER AGAIN!!!] I saw, abject powerty, dirt everywhere,sh..ty propaganda, and total desperation of those russian slaves. Stealing is the russian/soviet speciality – look what happend recently – Not only russians committed the revolting political murder on Polish President – the forces that supposed to ‘secure’ stole the credit cards of the victims – STEALING FROM CORPSES – that true russia……

    • Yes, freedom is essential, and i care about it a lot, just like you have the freedom to spread your disease here using the internet.

      The bottom line here is, you can not face reality and resort to the void blanket statement Soviet athletes “cheated” to explain the overwhelming triumph of Soviet sports over American sports at the Olympics.

      The USSR did not cheat, at all, in the form of anything like a “state sponsored” program; the USSR was not East Germany.

      Also you try to present this alleged “state sponsored” program to cheat at the Olympics -to no avail- as if cheating under such fashion was worse or “more terrible” than the independent-individualistic sort of cheating of an unknown number of American athletes. How ridiculous you are. LOL

      Just to give you an example of how ridiculously weak your accusations are: if the USSR had had a “state sponsored” program to cheat at the Olympics, then the USSR should have won the bulk of gold medals in the swimming competitions at the Olympics…but since you are ignorant and do not study the available information, you do not know that at the swimming pool the U.S.A. was the dominant force, [not as dominant as the Soviets were over the Americans, say, in gymnastics where America was the zero factor] , but even at the swimming pool Soviet swimmers won a number of medals.

      So, i rest my case. Have fun.

      • Well, in track and field events and wieghtlifting, where the soviets did have great success, there was a well documented system of state sponsored cheating, both in the USSR and in the DDR.

        “Kalinski, M. I. (2003). State-sponsored research on creatine supplements and blood doping in elite Soviet sport. Perspectives in Biology and Medicine, 46(3), 445-451.

        “The former Soviet Union began participating in international sport after World War II and soon achieved a dominant position in the Olympic Games and other competitions. The success of Soviet athletic programs led to charges of unfair practices but, because of secrecy surrounding Soviet research in exercise biochemistry, it has been difficult to substantiate these charges. This article presents previously restricted information regarding the development and use of creatine supplements and blood doping in the USSR. Early work by Olexander Palladin established the role of creatine in muscle function. In the 1970s, Soviet scientists showed that oral creatine supplements improved athletic performance in short, intense activities such as sprints. Subsequent studies in the West substantiated these investigations and have led to the widespread acceptance and use of creatine supplements to enhance muscle function and athletic performance. In addition, however, the Soviet government supported the development of blood doping, which is banned by the International Olympic Committee. Blood doping was pervasive in the USSR in the 1970s and 1980s, and was used by many Soviet athletes in the 1976 and 1980 Olympic Games. Open publication and discussion may help to prevent the abuses that can come from secret scientific research”.

        http://coachsci.sdsu.edu/csa/vol116/kalinsk2.htm

        “Kalinski, M. I., Dunbar, C. C., Gavronski, W., & Szygula, Z. (May, 2002).

        Evidence of state-sponsored steroid research using human subjects in the former Soviet Union. Sixth IOC World Congress on Sport Sciences, abstract, p. 37.

        The methodological office of the Central Institute of Physical Culture in Moscow produced a classified document, “Anabolic steroids and sport capacity” (39 pages) in 1972. Only recently has this document become available outside the Soviet Union/Russia. It contains sections titled “Anabolics and endurance”, “Anabolics and strength”, Anabolics and sport performance”, “Anabolics and sport results”, “Dosages of the anabolics”, “Possible adverse effects”, and “Control of use”. Separate investigations in the sports of biathlon, rowing, and basketball document improvements in sport achievements by improving muscle mass, maximal oxygen consumption, myocardial contractile function, and recovery.

        Implication. International sporting achievements by many Soviet Union athletes were most likely to have been enhanced by state-controlled drug programs.

        Implication. Soviet sponsored research defined the parameters surrounding effective doping in sports.”

        http://coachsci.sdsu.edu/csa/vol116/kalinsk1.htm

        Try again “sport billy”

      • Volume 46, Number 3, Summer 2003
        E-ISSN: 1529-8795 Print ISSN: 0031-5982
        DOI: 10.1353/pbm.2003.0035
        Kalinski, Michael I., 1943-
        State-Sponsored Research on Creatine Supplements and Blood Doping in Elite Soviet Sport
        Perspectives in Biology and Medicine – Volume 46, Number 3, Summer 2003, pp. 445-451

        The Johns Hopkins University Press

        The former Soviet Union began participating in international sport after World War II and soon achieved a dominant position in the Olympic Games and other competitions. The success of Soviet athletic programs led to charges of unfair practices but, because of secrecy surrounding Soviet research in exercise biochemistry, it has been difficult to substantiate these charges. This article presents previously restricted information regarding the development and use of creatine supplements and blood doping in the USSR. Early work by Olexander Palladin established the role of creatine in muscle function. In the 1970s, Soviet scientists showed that oral creatine supplements improved athletic performance in short, intense activities such as sprints. Subsequent studies in the West substantiated these investigations and have led to the widespread acceptance and use of creatine supplements to enhance muscle function and athletic performance. In addition, however, the Soviet government supported the development of blood doping, which is banned by the International Olympic Committee. Blood doping was pervasive in the USSR in the 1970s and 1980s, and was used by many Soviet athletes in the 1976 and 1980 Olympic Games. Open publication and discussion may help to prevent the abuses that can come from secret scientific research.

        http://muse.jhu.edu/login?uri=/journals/perspectives_in_biology_and_medicine/v046/46.3kalinski.html

  10. It may have been helpful to note that the old Soviets competing at those Olympic games were actually employees of the state, hardly in the spirit of what the games were back then.

    note to Stephanie, if you think that mentioning spelling errors are helpful, re: “chauvinistic” you’re opening up to an onslaught regarding your grammar.
    Glass houses and all that…
    My comment “that’s funny Stephanie” is also an error, it’s not funny. Using “rape” (now deleted) to refer to a lopsided sporting affair is poor form at best.

    • Ooooh, man

      Looks like Marc in Calgary is just a little unhappy that our hockey record outstrips someone elses. Those evil employees of the state, who regularly upset the Canadians with scores of up to 12-0. By the your logic, the US womens team is also employed by the state, considering the victories that it has compiled in the past several days. (e.g. 13-0).

      If you have any challenges to Stephanie’s comments when it comes to content, then speak them. Otherwise, your knitpicking about grammar and punctuation makes you look ludicrous.

  11. Stephanie Barbosa

    note to marc:

    i’m an immigrant and english is not my 1st language. it’s also funny how of my entire onslaught of unchallengeable arguments you were only able to pick on this LOL

    weak.

    and what’s wrong with saying ‘Canada raped Slovakia’ if the score was 18-0? only someone who was raped as a child would take offense to that.

    don’t you people watch Stephen Colbert, Jon Stewart or Family Guy??

    again, WEAK.

  12. To the author of this blog:

    You are absolutely obsessed, on an extreme pathological level, with Russia and all things Russian.

    Do you have nightly dreams about Russian when you sleep?

    • This is a Russia-related blog, what do you expect to read about here? If you like some other topics, nobody forces you to be here

  13. Clearly, Canadian organisers are having major troubles.

    And to retaliate for Canadian mistakes, we should punish Russia and boycott the Sochi Olympics! It’s very logical: you punish Peter for Paul’s mistakes.

  14. Stephanie, I don’t care that you are an immigrant, or that english is your first or fifth language, although you are correct that I’m not addressing nor faulting your arguments or opinions, only the *smallness* of you mentioning a spelling error while your commentary is filled with grammatical errors.
    You, brought this up, not me.

    Are you really comparing the angst of a high scoring hockey game to the pain of child rape?

    ~others~ “larussophobe” is obsessed with all things Russian and that’s a problem? duh… is this why it’s not named “la_latino_phobe” … for example?

    uff.

    • Stephanie Barbosa

      ****Are you really comparing the angst of a high scoring hockey game to the pain of child rape? ****

      sorry. a bit borderline?

      go get offended by a Family Guy joke or something LOL

      LA RUSSOPHOBE RESPONDS:

      This is your last warning. Clean up your act or you are banned.

      • Stephanie Barbosa

        Or I am banned?

        For what exactly? For being guilty for your lack of sense of humour?

        What happened to the basics of free speech? Censoring fingers are itchy?
        Ooooo little poopie pooo. [/STEWIE VOICE]

        Ban me. I will just come back under a different IP address. Ever heard of proxies? LOL!

        Malaka!

        LA RUSSOPHOBE RESPONDS:

        We don’t find rape funny. Sorry you can’t understand that or follow our rules, and feel the need to make utterly ridiculous, childish threats that mark you for a neo-Soviet thug. You are banned. We can delete just as many comments as you can post. Deletion is one click. Commenting is lots of typing, all for nothing. Have fun with that!

        • Vladimir Putin hates criticism and always censors his critics, especially those who show their total intellectual and moral superiority to him.

  15. Oh yes Stephanie Barbarossa, you moskali know all about ‘proxies’ don’t you.

    You are one yourself!

    Hilarious!

  16. Stephanie Barbosa

    Actually I am not. But I never denied (I think I already mentioned it before) that I`ve been married to a Russian Canadian for over 5 years and he`s a funny, caring and wonderful man.

    I`m a Portuguese Canadian.

    try again though

  17. Stephanie, you would know more about the Russians and Russia that La Russophobe describes if you would have married a poor Russian who actually lives in Russia among most of his compatriots. You would understand then what’s this all about.
    A Russian from a family who left Russia for Canada, most likely, tens of years ago, is not a 100 percent Russian that are described here. He is a Canadian citizen probably even born to Canadian citizen[s].
    So, even though La Russophobe, who is no Russian herself, exaggerates and dehumanises the Russian nation as a whole too much from time too time, even if she sometimes lacks logic and consistency in her claims when she forgets that Russia is largely incomparable to the USA and a 3rd World country itself (thus unable to achieve as much as the USA and donate other 3rd World countries out of humanity), I see why La Russophobe despises the defense of Russia (Russia – not your Canadian Russian husband) you naively provide.
    There’s no much fun and pride to live in Russia, especially not as its average or below average citizen, darling.

  18. Stephanie, are you of Greek origin??

    • Stephanie Barbosa // February 19, 2010 at 5:48 am
      I`m a Portuguese Canadian.

      Jurate // February 19, 2010 at 1:39 pm
      Stephanie, are you of Greek origin??

      No, Portuguese and Greek are not the quite same.

      Let me guess: are you a a product of the American secondary education?

  19. On the contrary, the Sochi games (and they won’t be cancelled…make no mistake about that) will probably be a docile, well-run affair.

    I’ve lived in Russia off and on my whole life and it resembles its Soviet self now more than any other time since ’91. And in those heady ‘nichevo nyet’ days things were geared to keep foreigners happy and saying nice things about the Rodina.

    In Sochi, the OMON and other security forces will be out in numbers that would make Cecil B. DeMille weep tears of envy. They will hammer down anyone who might embarrass Russia in front of the cameras. Pickpocketers, Panhandlers, and Protestors…off to the holding cells!

    Don’t count on shabby venues. The amount of money being thrown at these monstronsities guarantee sparkly, shiny, metal and glass confections. Instead, check back 8 years from now when the shoddy workmanship has risen to the surface and the structures are barely recognizable.

    Don’t expect bus drivers to protest long hours or Zambonis to malfunction or embarrassing techno-glitches in the opening ceremonies. The right people will have been paid enough to prevent such pecadilloes.

    But don’t expect a resurgence of Russian dominance in sport either. They’ve lost their assembly line of champions as coaches and athletes have fled to the West and facilities have fallen into disrepair or been paved over.

    Putin will have his Potemkin party. It will be so over-the-top that the idiots will enjoy themselves and everyone else will come away slightly embarrassed by the whole thing.

    • So, do you think they can beat the Chinese in terms of glitz and pomp? Both Russia and China are famous for lies, propaganda, hysterical “patriotism,” and for thinking that the standing of a country is in direct correlation to the number of medals it got, but Bejing 2008 would be hard to beat

  20. @Canada, you may already know, does not have a region like the Caucasus seething and roiling with daily terrorist violence aimed at government officials and police officers motivated by a furious desire to live separately from an oppressive, racist, dictatorial autocracy.

    Umarov threatens to take the fight to Russia: “Blood will no longer be spilled only in our towns and villages. The war will come to their cities. If the Russians think that the war is only something that takes place on television, somewhere far away in the Caucasus, and does not affect them, then by Allah we are going to show them that this war will return to their homes. Therefore, the zone of hostilities will be extended to the whole territory of Russia…”

    The programme outlined by the worthy Amir does not seem totally new. Even before the First Chechen War, Dzhokhar Dudayev threatened to send Chechen troops to Vladivostok in the event of hostilities. Such threats to “destroy Russia” were almost de rigueur at the time, and were a genre adopted by many, though not often in a coherent form.

    After the start of the Second War, Shamil Basayev tried to entangle Russia in a net of terrorist attacks in the hope of forcing its leadership to negotiate. Nord-Ost and Beslan put an end to those ill-founded plans.

    So is there anything new in Umarov’s rhetoric? I think there may be. No matter how blasphemous it may be to say so, the new terrorist doctrine appears to be more realistic. The head of the extremist insurgency does not expect, like Basayev, to be able to stage a repeat of Budennovsk. He does not expect negotiations or victory. He sets his goal beyond the political perspective – to make the war a condition of existence for everyone in Russia.

    It is hard to gauge the accuracy of Umarov’s assessment of the insurgents’ strength. On the basis of last summer’s operations we can say that the terrorist capabilities of the Caucasus Emirate have increased, and that the security forces have failed to stop this process. Is therefore quite easy to assume that if this trend continues, next summer will see a further increase in terrorist activity.

    http://www.watchdog.cz/index.php?show=000000-000024-000001-000033&lang=1

  21. [It may have been helpful to note that the old Soviets competing at those Olympic games were actually employees of the state, hardly in the spirit of what the games were back then.]

    Yes, the Olympic Games were originally designed as an arena for wealthy people to win and become famous.

    Wealthy people don’t have to work, so they can practice full-time. Average people have to earn a salary. Thus, unless they get paid for competing, they have to work and thus get little time to practice.

    So, to make sure that poor people don’t get a chance to win at the Olympics, athletes were banned form receiving salary for their sports activity.

    Of course, in USA we have “athletic scholarships” that pay for talented athletes to go to college and practice sports in college. Other US athletes joined the army and practiced at army facilities. And in socialist countries, athletes also were either students on scholarships like in USA or military men or “workers” receiving salaries without to actually work on the assembly lines.

    Thank god, pro athletes are now allowed to compete openly.

  22. [What’s more, the USSR was a GROUP of nations, including what is now Ukraine, Georgia, Belarus and many others, so to fairly compare it to the USA you would have to make the USA part of a group too, adding Canada just for starters.]

    Actually, USA is a GROUP of 50 states.

    In any case, adding Canada would not have changed anything because in those years, Canada was very weak in sports other than hockey, curling and lacrosse, and Canada won very few medals. For example, in 1980 in Lake Placid, Canada won 0 golds, 1 silver and 1 bronze; and in 1972 Sapporo Canada won 0 gold, 1 silver and 0 bronze. And that was a Northern country 6 times larger than Norway. Ouch!

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canada_at_the_Winter_Olympics#Medals_by_Winter_Games

  23. @RV I don’t think the Russians will try to top the Chinese in pomp etc. For one thing they lack the capacity in scale. And Winter Olympics are more subdued as rule anyhow.

    Look instead for preachiness. I don’t know how but I’m certain the opening ceremonies will include: Praise for Putin, acts that portray the West as dangerously unstable, Praise for Putin, a veritable flood of Abkhaz and Ossetian children in traditional garb (take THAT Georgia!), Praise for Putin, and um.. something that shows how wonderful everything is under a strong hand.

  24. Apparently there is a debate going on at the moment on Russian TV, people are shocked and upset at the lack of medals, Putin is pointing the finger at Yeltsin even though he left office over 10 years ago, if Russia does as badly in Sochi I wonder who he will blame?, after all it will be 14 years since the days of Yeltsin.Russia has won 1 gold medal same as Holland a country with no hills and little snow LOL.

    • I think Yeltsin is dead. How can they blame him? And then, I don’t even understand why should anyone be “shocked and upset” about this medals situation. It really sounds frivolous. Don’t they have bigger problems?

      Olympics is basically just a form of entertainment. Shouldn’t they instead worry of extra judicial killings or the state of their economy?

  25. Sport Billy , you still can’t grasp the fact , that
    USSR and Russia ( Moscovia ) is not synonymous . There are no more opportunities
    to grab the best athletic tallent from Ukraine ,
    Georgia , Armenia , Kazkhstan , the rest of the
    Caucasus , and the Baltic States ; Lithuania ,
    Latvia and Estonia , and cart it off to mosccovia
    and then present them to the world as genuine
    moscovites . As a result , Moscovia suffers in
    both the winter as well as the summer olympic
    games . But those are the facts of life ; never
    will Moscovia dominate again .
    And , oh yes , your boy Evgenniy DID NOT get
    the gold , he barely got silver , which was more
    than a generous gift .
    Arthur , you are of the same ilk as Sports Billy ,
    in the sense that you don’t know the differance between a country and a state . So , No , the
    U.S. is not a group of countries is a group of
    states WITHIN a country , you imbecile .

    • Care to enlighten us how many gold medals these countries won?

      • AT,

        The larger the population – the more medals. In the USSR, all republics contributed great athletes in proportion to their population sizes.

        The population of the modern Russian Federation is half that of the old USSR, so RF cannot win as many medals as did the larger USSR.

        For illustration purposes, here are medals won by Russian athletes competing for other countries and by athletes from other ex-Soviet republics:

        Anastasia Kuzmina-Shipulina – GOLD and SILVER in biathlon. A Russian woman who started competing for Slovakia a couple of years ago because she didn’t make it to the Russian national team. Her brother, Anton Shipulin, is in the Olympics on the Russian team.

        Sergey Novikov – Belarus – SILVER in biahtlon.

        Elena Khrustaleva- SILVER in biathlon – A Russian woman who later switched to Belarus and now competes for Kazakhstan because she didn’t make it to the Russian national team.

        Darya Domracheva – BRONZE in biathlon – born in Belarus, grew up in Russia, competes for Belarus because she didn’t make it to the Russian national team.

        Juris Šics – SILVER – Luge – Latvia

        Martins Dukurs – SILVER – Skeleton – Latvia

        Kristina Šmigun – SILVER – Cross-Country Skiing – Estonia – Her father and coach, Anatoly Shmigun, was a Russian-Soviet skier, who married an Estonian-Soviet skier and moved to Estonia.

  26. [At the opening ceremonies, one of the four cauldrons experienced a mechanical failure.

    Then a Georgian luge athlete was killed during a practice run, a crucial safety wall having been left unbuilt on a track that was horrifically dangerous, producing unheardof speeds.

    Next, snow conditions deteriorated so much that a key skiing venue had to be closed to spectators because of the danger, and the world’s most famous halfpipe snowboarders began ridiculing the condition of their apparatus.

    And finally, there was a total failure of ice maintenance at the speed-skating oval, resulting in a delay of hours as coaches complained vehemently about danger to their athletes from improperly prepared rink surfaces.

    Oh, and that was all on the opening weekend alone.]

    Boycott Sochi Olympics because Canada’s is failing as an Olympic host? That’s precious!

    Only LR can blame Russia for North America’s embarrassments.

  27. Latest hot news! Russia has lost her quarter final against Canada 7–3.

    Their hockey team is going home empty handed for the first time in – I believe – 50 years.

  28. I seems impossible that Russia will have it together for 2014. I would understand if the Olympics were in the Urals or even the far East, but Sochi? Right next to Chechnya, Georgia, etc? Think about all the local scumbag criminals that will have to be paid off just to get the games together. Look for anyone visiting to be gouged constantly. I was at Whistler and bought sandwiches for $6, unlike at Sun Valley or Vail where you will pay double that at any grocery store. Russia is going to see this as a money-making opportunity. Plus, there will be insurgents literally dying to make a statement or disrupt, people that can’t be bought off.
    Turks, Israelis, etc may want to go because of close proximity, but Russians (men especially) are inherently racist people. They won’t treat people well, I guarantee you.

    So imagine a cordon of paranoid security everywhere you go. I know people of Italian, Spanish etc descent, anyone with dark hair, that have been harassed by drunken Russians. I can’t believe the IOC gave them the Olympics.

    On top of all of this, they are engaged in rampant ecological destruction to build the venues. Very few people will want to travel to Russia, at least from NAmerica. THe winter Olympics take more specialized venues than the Summer ones. Why dont they just throw them every other year in the Alps, and save the adventurous choices for eveyr other year.

    BTW, Vancouver got lucky that it had a solid sunny week in the middle. It easily could have rained the entire time.

    • [Right next to Chechnya, Georgia, etc?]

      Are you saying that Georgia and Chechnya can never host the Olympics because they account for a disproportional number of gangsters? What about respect for their cultures and traditions? Kidnapping people for ransom is a centuries-old Chechen tradition. It helped them survive economically, just as opium/heroin trade is crucial to the economic survival of Afghanis and Albanians.

      [Think about all the local scumbag criminals that will have to be paid off just to get the games together.]

      The Olympics are important enough for Putin that he will put his foot down and tell these gangsters: “Stay away from Sochi or or be arrested or killed”.

  29. by the way, I’m not saying that there aren’t good Russian people, because there are many. The problem is that Russia is run by a sociopathic egomanical, anti-democratic dictator, and that the Russian people always seem to celebrate this kind of big brother leader instead of democracy. That’s the biggest problem with Russia.

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