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Which country will top the Olympics 2008 medal tally?

Travel Forums Off Topic Which country will top the Olympics 2008 medal tally?

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71. Posted by opospa (Travel Guru 1837 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

Quoting Utrecht

Quoting zaksame

I win...

I already thougt Zaksame was a Chinese name

Maybe Tibetan or the Uyghur's name??

72. Posted by tway (Travel Guru 7273 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

At the hairdresser's today, I was reading an article in l'Actualité that was talking about how Chinese olympians are made. Kids with the ideal physical traits are sent to olympic training camps to learn. They go home twice a year. They train all the time (and they don't have to get part-time jobs to pay for rent). Their star basketball player is the result of special selecting of the two tallest basketball players in the country.

I don't begrudge them their success and those kids worked very, very hard to get where they are--and the parents are very happy that their kids get a chance and an education--but there's something off about that kind of forced training. It's less a choice to represent your country than a mandate to showcase its power.

73. Posted by vegasmike6 (Travel Guru 3579 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

The Chinese are following the old Soviet Union training model. During the cold war the Soviet Union and it's east bloc satellite countries used the Olympics to 'prove' what a superior system communism was over the west's capitalism. The state would select promising kids and groom them for specific sports. Since life was so difficult for most people living in the Soviet Union and surrounding countries, families would allow their kids to become professional athletes for the 'glory of the country'. You might remember the widespread doping going on back then. Many East German and Bulgarian athletes were caught doping and kicked out of the Olympics. This all came to light after the 'iron curtain' fell and the Soviet Union broke apart. An East Geman official admitted that they practiced state sponsored doping and used sophisticated drugs to test 'clean' during drug testing. But, anyone who saw the East German women athletes before the breakup knew something was amiss. Click here for the story.

China is now doing the same thing. Identify kids that have talent in a particular sport, train them until they are ready for the Olympics. The kids really have little to say when the state decides you are going to represent your country and bring fame and glory to China. And it also appears China is ready to break the rules to achieve success. Anyone who watched the Chinese women's gymnastic team perform has some questions on the age of several of the athletes. China published the girls names ages of their womens team several years. Now they produce a passport to 'prove' that several of their female gymnasts are 16. Their own documents say she is 14. The IOC is now investigating the charge that China used underage athletes to win medals in womens gymnastics. This is not an athlete using performance enhancing drugs to make the team and perhaps win a medal. This is state sponsored cheating. If it turns out China knowingly used underage gymnasts, it will be a huge public relations nightmare for China. Here is one article about the controversy.

74. Posted by vegasmike6 (Travel Guru 3579 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

An update on the Chinese Gymnastic team.
This controversy could be very embarrassing to the Chinese gov't. If true, this is state sponsored cheating. The gymnasts in question have Chinese passports that state all are at least 16 yrs of age. Documents previously published state that they are not.

75. Posted by fierres (Inactive 30 posts) 9y Star this if you like it!

i'll go for China:)

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