The Baffler,  January 9, 2015

Daily Bafflements

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• “We are honored to be the U.S. bid city to host the 2024 Olympic & Paralympic Games,” reads the website for Boston 2024. “We are ready to engage in a community process about the opportunity presented by hosting the Games and eager to share the best of Boston with the world.” The take from the group No Boston Olympics: the Olympics in Boston would cost about $19 billion, public funds that would be diverted “from education, healthcare, transportation, and open space–all to throw an extravagant party for the unelected, unaccountable members of the International Olympic Committee.”

• The largest donors to the Olympics bid are Bain Capital executives, reports the Globe.

• The city has estimated that the bid would cost $4.5 billion in private funding, and only $5 billion in public money. “That’s farcical,” responds an expert on the economics of the Olympic games. “More often that not, Olympics wind up as a public burden,” Andrew Zimbalist tells TIME. “I have no reason to believe that Boston will be an exception rather than the rule.”

• Boston native Nate Scott’s attempt to explain why this is such a disastrous idea, infrastructure-wise, sort of sums it all up: “Streets are one way for a little while and then go one way the other direction,” he writes in USA Today. “I know it doesn’t seem possible, but it’s a real thing in Boston. This happens frequently.”

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Further Reading

 February 12

The NYPD’s secret M.A.R.C.H. operation has been closing the city’s venues for years—should it be abolished?

 February 7

If Jordan Peterson really is the “most influential public intellectual in the Western world right now,” as David Brooks writes, we have reason to worry.