Needed: Backup Olympics Site


My bet: we are going to need a backup Olympics site for summer 2008. Beijing is not going to be able to get its house in order, pollution-wise, in time for the Games. I read the other day that China is a (the primary?) source of particulate air pollution in — would you believe — Los Angeles. You don’t get rid of a problem like that by stopping downtown traffic for a few days.

Some athletes are going to refuse to go. Some are going to go, and are going to be featured on the world’s media with various respiratory problems. The wisest thing China could do would be to support contingency plans now. Otherwise, we are talking about a world-class loss of face — the kind of thing that creates a new verb: “to beijing,” meaning to grossly pollute.


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