Maybe We Should Have Given Mitt Romney More Credit For Saving The SLC Olympics, We Guess, Maybe
Are you following the failboat that is the Sochi Olympic readiness thus far? Journalists have arrived to super fun neato things like their phones being hacked pretty much the second they touch Russian soil or finding out that if they go elsewhere for awhile, their hotel rooms just get rented to someone else in their absence. If those things aren't wretched enough for you, there's also the fact that Russia is defending the crappy bathrooms you are experiencing by explaining that the bathrooms aren't at all crappy because their spycams IN ALL THE BATHROOMS tell them so.
Dmitry Kozak, the deputy prime minister responsible for the Olympic preparations, reflected the view held among many Russian officials that some Western visitors are deliberately trying to sabotage Sochi's big debut out of bias against Russia. "We have surveillance video from the hotels that shows people turn on the shower, direct the nozzle at the wall and then leave the room for the whole day," he said. An aide then pulled a reporter away before Mr. Kozak could be questioned further on surveillance in hotel rooms.
The whole thing is such a clusterfuck of epically delightful proportions that it has us rethinking Mitt Romney's claim that he saved the Olympics. It sounded absurd at the time, in large part because it was something Mitt Romney said, but seriously, Russia maybe should have hired Mittens last year. It's not like he has another job, so maybe he would have been down.
Let's take a trip back to the beautiful days of 2011-2012 when Mitt was leveraging his role in the Olympics into some "look at me I'm presidential" fodder. The Olympics were coming off of that pesky bribery scandal where we learned that apparently every person in Salt Lake City who had anything to do with the Olympics was a corrupt motherfucker and people had to step down. Also, too, the Olympics were broke. Now, they weren't like Sochi broke, because to the best of our knowledge they had working toilets and roads and such up in SLC, but things were pretty fucked up. Mitt came in to persuade corporate sponsors to throw some monies at the thing, so Mitt wheeled and dealed and those Olympics actually turned a profit. Be proud, Mitt! That is A Thing you did that you did not fuck up!
Now, we don't want to go overboard with the Mitt love here, because he does have a particular knack for turning the things that are good about him into things that are also bad about him, like the thing with the pins. You don't remember the thing with the pins?
This image of Olympic savior was actually cast in collector-quality enameled metal cloisonne pins produced by the Salt Lake Olympic committee.
Critic Ken Bullock has them in his Olympic pin collection.
"We have Valentine's ones with all the Olympic mascots around saying, 'We love you, Mitt,' " Bullock says, as he pulls up images of the pins on his computer.
"We have him pulling a sled of some sort where some of the mascots are saying, 'Are we there yet, Mitt?' "
Ken Bullock scoffs at what he calls "the Superman" pin, which features Romney "with a Clark Kent chin," wrapped in an American flag.
"I don't know how to put words to describe how narcissistic they are," Bullock says.
Three Olympic pin collectors and experts consulted by NPR say they've never seen pins like these featuring the CEO of an Olympic organizing committee.
Apparently this was sort of a big deal at the time, because it was evidence of Mitt's big head. Also, we learned that there are people that collect Olympic pins and feel VERY STRONGLY about them.
Mitt also managed to turn his Olympic turnaround into a solid gaffe when he talked about the 2012 London games.
Here is what Romney said early today (Thursday) in London (during an interview with NBC's Brian Williams): "You know, it's hard to know just how well it will turn out. There are a few things that were disconcerting, the stories about the private security firm not having enough people, supposed strike of the immigration and customs officials, that obviously is not something which is encouraging."
Here is what Cameron was moved to say in reply, during a visit to Olympic Park: "We are holding an Olympic Games in one of the busiest, most active, bustling cities anywhere in the world. Of course it's easier if you hold an Olympic Games in the middle of nowhere."
Oh Mittens. So unlikeable, so tone deaf, but he was right to be pretty proud of what he did with an Olympics where he came into the middle of a situation marred by bribery and overspending, and one that was also too the first Olympics post 9/11 so the dread threat of terror hung around that thing like a shroud. But Mitt managed to convince corporate America to throw coin at the thing, which is likely why we didn't have toilets with no drains and hotels with no ceilings for the 2002 Olympics.
Damn you, Sochi Olympics, for making us have to think semi-well of Mitt Romney. We mean, at least he didn't go around and poison all the dogs.