I was amused to read and hear about US journalists complaining about having their computers/phones hacked upon arriving in Russia to cover the Olympic Games. These are people that live with daily spying by the US Government and do not complain. I guess it’s easier to criticize a foreign country than one’s own, especially when it’s the “enemy”.
Of course, now that the Olympic Games are upon us, the time has returned for stupid people (ie. Fox News talking heads, as well as some on other networks) to talk about something they know little about. I hear the dumbest comments about the Olympics, which people accept without questions. Having spent many years working with the Olympic Games and the Olympic Committee, I know a bit about past games. I am less informed about recent developments, but I can watch with a learned eye and judge the comments made by people trying to sound intelligent.
And, in case you did not know, the Winter Games need snow only at the ski venues. Snow is not needed in the town, where all sports take place indoors. In fact, it is more pleasant for spectators to move around. I recall hurrying from one building to the next in -27 degree temperatures in Lillehammar; I would have preferred Sochi weather.
Another amusing issue concerns yogurt. It seems that American athletes will not have their usual brand (which surely paid for the privelege) because “US Department of Agriculture has refused to provide a certificate that is required to import dairy products...”. I worked for a company that provided gear for many national olympic teams, all of which wanted to import special dietary elements into the United States for the Atlanta Games. Do you think any received permission to import food? No chance, not even with a certificate. At least the Russians have rules allowing certain products...if you are not too arrogant to balk at following other countries’ rules. Try showing up at a US airport with a pot of yogurt...
There are few bigger wastes of time than reading some journalist or commentators opinion on the unexplained motive of some politician. I am amused by the number of articles “explaining” why Putin released a prisoner, who is either a convicted criminal or political prisoner or both, depending upon who can be believed...if anyone.
Until Mr. Putin explains his reasons and is truthful, why should anyone bother speculating? Above all, why should anyone waste time reading speculation? I prefer fiction: I know it’s all lies.
All news media are wont to include Twitter comments and YouTube videos of viewers/readers, as if those people have something meaningful to add. Who cares about someone's opinion, just because they have one and can type 140 characters? This is lazy journalism.
I am reminded of something Oscar Wilde wrote/said over 100 years ago (before computers!); "By giving the opinions of the uneducated, journalism keeps us in touch with the ignorance of the community."
Prior to writing novels, the author enjoyed a multifaceted career: from decorated combat aviator to advertising professional to global communications director of a major consumer brand. He has traveled the world and met sports, film and television stars, political leaders, and royalty. He graduated from Middlebury College, is married, lives in Germany, and has two grown children.