I know I should be all cynical about this subject (why spend so much money on this when we so desperately need housing, healthcare, etc), but I just can’t help but be all excited. It’s like space exploration — it costs far too much, but I really don’t care. I wannit I wannit I wannit!
So now I’m all concerned because of course we have this plebiscite coming up next month. Now, I’m very glad we’re having it, even if really, it’s too late. This should have been held a year or so ago. Now, Vancouver’s already committed to the bid, regardless of the outcome of this vote. However, a no vote, or even a cautioned yes vote could impact negatively on Vancouver’s chances to get the 2010 games. Which sucks. I’m so stoked to go see olympic hockey, long and short-track speed skating, snowboarding/moguls. The rest, really, I don’t care so much about, although I’d probably try and see some ski jumping, possibly some curling too. After the games, will these venues stand empty? I doubt it. Think of speed-skating clubs starting up in Vancouver, with the olympic venue to train, or simply to rent out and skate around in. Likely, we’ll start getting World Cup events, which would be very cool. And that’s just sporting benefits
I’ve no idea on the short- or long-term benefits will actually be for Vancouver/Whisterlites. There’s claims of housing, thousands upon thousands of jobs, of international prestige, etc. Which is all good. It is proposed that GM Place will be renovated to have international ice. Will this mean that the Canucks will play on international ice too? Wouldn’t that be fun: I’ve been thinking the NHL should adopt international ice for ages.
Now, the Liberals, principally Gordon Campbell, has said that he will campaign for the ‘yes’ side in this plebiscite. Already, much has been made that this will become more a referendum on his running the province, which we all know, will most likely lead to a ‘no’ vote: you’d be hard pressed to convince many British Columbians that Mr. Campbell’s been doing a good job. Of course, in light of recent events, I think that Gordon Campbell campaigning on this issue could be an even worse idea. The split in this province over how to react to the drunk-driving charge is quite amazing (although, it must be said, I don’t think I personally know anyone who doesn’t think he should have at least offered his resignation — even the wacky ultra-conservative guy who I always disagree with doesn’t like him), and I worry the reaction to his arrest will negatively impact this upcoming plebiscite (although perhaps the curernt goodwill towards Larry Campbell & COPE will override that), which would very negatively impact the bid, which would mean no Olympics. Which after Toronto’s (apparently mayorally) botched bid, would be bad for Canada. Which would mean that the next US bid (likely NYC) would probably win, which would mean it would be even longer until Canada got an Olympics again. Which would suck, because I love watching the Olympics, and it fills me with a strange, nationalist pride to think of Canada hosting the games. If it’s my hometown, why, that’s just an added bonus!