The Grauniad is running an Olympic medal table to show where all the countries would be if it was weighted for GDP. Needless to say, we do not figure, nor less the yanks. It is a reminder that we are rich scum and our victories have been achieved on the backs of the poor, the oppressed, and if there were any fairness on the world then the plaudits would be heading to Kyrgyzstan or Mali or somewhere. Quite right. I wonder if affluence might not be weighted into the actual games themselves, with athletes from rich countries carrying a handicap devised by the Grauniad editorial team, unless they are black in which case they carry no handicap at all?
Affluence is certainly a factor in events such as cycling and sailing; rather less so, I would contend, in rowing and boxing. Perhaps every social or economic or cultural factor might be accounted for in some way; the tradition for the sport within the country (or necessity for it), the extent to which sport is seen as important, the amount of time to which the athletes are able to train and so on. My guess is that the final medal table would simply reflect population size – and then we could weigh in that as well, and we’d all be equal.Tags: Equality, GDP, Olympics, Race, Sport, The Guardian