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PROTEST TODAY!: Shut Down the Olympic Bid

Date: Today, Thursday, April 2, 2009
Time: 5:00pm - 7:30pm
Location: Federal Plaza
Street: 50 W. Adams, Chicago, IL

The International Olympic Committee will be in town from April 2-8th to evaluate Chicago's potential as a Host City for the 2016 Summer Olympics. Let them know that Chicago 2016 does not speak for the people of Chicago. Let them know that Chicagoans have other priorities. Let them hear your voice.


We need Better Hospitals, Housing, Schools, and Trains -- Not Olympic Games.

For more info please contact someone at No Games: Chicago -
Phone: 312-235-2873
Email: nogameschicago@gmail.com


( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
Apr. 2nd, 2009 04:27 pm (UTC)
Good luck. I'll be thinking of you. Hope you get a big crowd and plenty of positive attention. I've heard some quality coverage of the G20 protests on NPR; perhaps the Chicago station will send someone.
Apr. 3rd, 2009 03:41 am (UTC)
If you hear of any other type of protest against this - like a petition, please let me know. Too bad I couldn't be part of this tonight.
Apr. 6th, 2009 02:18 am (UTC)
I have a dumb question. Doesn't winning the Olympic bid typically add economic resources and end up as a positive/win for the economy?

I understand that resources would go in the short term, to ramp up for the Olympics, but in the long term my understanding is that more revenue comes to a city that allows it to increase funding to serve the public.

For instance, with Olympics coming into town, there's both incentive, and finances, put into public transportation. Etc, etc.
Apr. 6th, 2009 05:50 pm (UTC)
Hey woman -

No question is a dumb question and many, many folks agree with you that the Olympics would be a boon for Chicago.

I am sure that many restaurants and shops in the area would make more money from the influx of tourists. It is my understanding, however, that the majority of Olympic games in recent years did not break even or make a profit and are therefore a net loss for the cities who produced them.

What's more, the consumerist aspects of an event like this (that encourages the over-consumption of plastic gee-gaws which no one needs) are off-putting to me. Events like this also tend to bring about a lot of displacement of the homeless or folks in lower income housing for the building of stadiums or other structures which are not all that usable later. I went to school next to the abandoned World's Fair Grounds in Knoxville so I've seen event skeletons which linger and cannot be incorporated back into a city's vitality.

Then there's the garbage produced (which would be staggering) - the congestion of downtown (where I work) and the (probable) lack on the CTA's part to keep up with the increased traffic.

While there would be an influx of spending here in the city as well as some temporary jobs - I'd rather see Chicago put its focus and energy into more green programs, better schools/hospitals/transit, etc. and above all a RECYCLING PROGRAM THAT WORKS!

*ahem...end of rant...blush* :)
Apr. 7th, 2009 06:42 am (UTC)
Aha....there were a few things I had forgotten about Olympic-type things. One was plastic gew-gaws and other disposable manufactured crap. I wonder if the city can offer incentives for gew gaws to be made of recycled or bio-degradable materials or something exciting like that.

I was very inspired on Saturday at my Chicago Conservation Corps class; David O'Donnell, the deputy commissioner of Energy and Sustainable Business, did a presentation on air and energy. He talked about what the city is working to do to reduce energy usage through the Chicago Climate Action plan. At the very least, it seems that they are looking to have some measurable results by 2016, so however it goes down, the Olympic bid has been a catalyst for some of the city's green push.

Last week I got to hear from Chris Sauve, Program Director for the Chicago Dept. of Streets and San's Recycling. This is the guy who is responsible for rolling out the Blue Cart program, as well as increasing the number of the big blue recycling dumpsters.

It's been good to hear from the people rolling out this work, and hear what they're trying to do; it's hard, too, because I see what they are facing. I suppose it's giving me a chance to see more of what I can do to help the system.

I think they want the Olympics here because they see it as an access to funding to help their departments green initiatives get a fast infusion of funds.

The issue of the trash generated is significant, as is the useless structures. Saturday, David mentioned something about a plan for a stadium that could be disassembled and re-used later on, or something like that..I'm curious enough to check it out online.

I'll also be reading up on Chicago's Climate Action program. In specific, the plan David spoke of on Saturday is ramping up to rehab 400,000 apartments and homes to make them more energy efficient, starting with the lowest income areas to save those folks the utility money hemorrhaged by poor insulation, etc. They did 6,000 last year, and I think they're looking to do 9,000 this year.

Anyways, green blah blah...seems that there's good stuff going on, as long as they can keep funding it, and I'm hoping to come out of this training with a better understanding of how to get involved.

I'd be for the Olympics thing if it really was an efficiently green program from top to bottom, from gew gaws to stadiums. I can see how the funding could help out CTA among other things, but if the Olympics haven't made a profit, I'm concerned about that as well.
Apr. 15th, 2009 05:56 pm (UTC)
Your post brings up conflicting emotions for me. I am happy to have better green programs in the city. I also think that human beings need to learn that less is more.

I am tired of opening "Conscious Choice" magazine to see all the green shit they want to sell me. If I'm going green then the best way to do it is to quit buying things. Filling my life with "eco-stuff" is not helping. Yes, it is marginally better than buying stuff from China...but still.

I do not know that I agree with the opinions of these "green" folks who want to bring the Olympics here and I'd be very interested in seeing comparisons of the negative impact of this event vs. actual sustainable changes which are made for it and are integrated into Chicago's long-term life.

Unless I see significant evidence to the contrary, I have a hard time seeing how the decreased time-lines of some green programs can offset gratuitous over-spending, needless consumerism, egregious litter/waste, and over-priced and unhealthy processed foods/drink (to mention a few of the reasons I am not in support of it).

To me, to say "let's make a green Olympics" is like saying "let's make a green shopping mall with a huge green walmart that we all drive to in huge green SUV's".

For me, real green is living simply...and Americans are very far from being able (or willing) to do that. I know that makes me a curmudgeon but so be it. BAH HUMBUG! ;>)
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )

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