Five Ring Circus
337 Pages
English

Five Ring Circus

-

337 Pages
English

Description

The shiny rings of the Olympic Games have grown tarnished over the years as doping, corruption and other scandals rise to the surface. Those scandals are the tip of the iceberg, according to author Christopher Shaw, the lead spokesperson for several anti-Games groups.

Five Ring Circus details the history of how Vancouver won the bid for the 2010 Games, who was involved, and what the real motives were. It describes the role of corporate media in promoting the Games, the machinations of government and business, and the opposition that emerged.

Disturbing questions come to light:

  • Why does the IOC pay no taxes?
  • Who are the real estate developers behind the Vancouver bid?
  • Why are mega projects paid for with tax dollars?
  • What are the true costs of the Games?

The Olympic Games, once considered the pinnacle of athleticism and fair play, have become a cesspool of greed, backroom deals and the wholesale trampling of civil liberties. In Vancouver, preparations for the 2010 Games have had a substantial negative impact on the environment and has resulted in the "economic cleansing" of the poor and homeless.

This book is a cautionary tale for future Olympic bid cities, and will appeal to those concerned about the effects of globalization on many aspects of life.


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Informations

Published by
Published 01 July 2008
Reads 0
EAN13 9781550923568
Language English
Document size 1 MB

Legal information: rental price per page €. This information is given for information only in accordance with current legislation.

Exrait

Advance praise for F R C
Chris Shaw brilliantly and grippingly uncovers the looting of Vancouver, how the IOC and its drug-fuelled Games poison our democracies, award gold li-censes to land speculators, and dump the bill on taxpayers. It’s a story of gro-tesque deceit confronted by heroic protests and citizen-driven corruption investigations that shame the co-opted media. A must-read for any commu-nity under threat from the Olympic boosters. — A J, investigative reporter and filmmaker
We are told that the slogan of the Olympics is Faster, Higher, Stronger. But for far too many host cities, it’s been Greed, Guns, and Graft. Chris Shaw’s Five Ring Circusis a remarkable contribution to unmasking what really goes down when the Olympics come to town — in Vancouver and beyond. is is an urgent must-read, and the best sporting expose I’ve read in years. — D Z, authorA People’s History of Sports in the United States.
A crucial tale, told under pressure on the fly, of public-spirited citizens stand-ing up for shared truths forged in the teeth of the blizzard of lies pumped out by Olympic industry media. A gripping epic about corporations socio-pathically obsessed with re-colonizing our sacred places as subsidized out-door malls for bored and lonely tourists to go to for retail therapy. Read it and realize that local networks of citizens can be re-invigorated in the struggles against these place invaders.
— M S, gamesmonitor.org.uk
e Olympic juggernaut must be stopped! I wholeheartedly agree with Christopher Shaw, and you will, too, after you read this book. is is the real Olympic story, a careful and passionate documentation of every hidden detail behind the Vancouver bid and organizing committees’“feel good” facade. — H J L, author ofInside the Olympic Industry: Power, Politics and Activism, e Best Ever Olympics: Social Impacts of Sydney andOlympic Industry Resistance: Challenging OlympicPowers and Propaganda;Professor Emerita, University of Toronto
e Olympic Games are often regarded as a gift to host cities. In his thought-ful but impassionedFive Ring Circus,Chris Shaw succeeds in tearing away the public relations wrapping and IOC ribbons. With well-worded precision, he examines the real prize inside, meant for developers and insiders: a count-down clock wired to a civic incendiary device. — G O,Common Groundmagazine
Ten minutes of this book is enough to throw one inside a world once known by only a handful of people. Shaw describes the true face of this private levi-athan, the IOC: its deep and consolidated fascist roots, and the unbeatable string of financial disasters left after the rodeo has gone from town. If you want to know exactly what theolympicsare, and what they absolutely are not, just don’t miss it. — S B, co-founder of the Turin  Antiolympics’ Committee.Member of the Worldwide Opposition to the“olympic games”.
In the public mind, the Olympics are all about international brotherhood, and friendly contests among amateur athletes from around the world. Well-researched and important,Five Ring Circusreveals the realities of how this world really works and what it’s really about — greed and money.Five Ring Circusis about more than just the Olympics; it’s a vehicle, a microcosm, that can open people’s minds to looking beneath the surface ofthe spectacleof fan-tasy media reality.
— R M, authorEscaping the Matrix: How We the People can change the world
is book is the IOC and VANOC’s worst nightmare.Five Ring Circusis a well-researched and challenging examination of how the Olympics is, at its heart, all about real estate mega deals, and making rich developers even richer. Christopher Shaw should get a gold medal for investigative journalism. — D E, lawyer, Pivot Legal Society
Everything you wanted to know about the Olympic Games is inFive Ring Cir-cus.Shaw exposes the massive corporate corruption surrounding the Games, and names our British Columbian politicians who align themselves with the vile, wretched schemes of corporate vandals to defraud the rest of us of our public lands, waters, and money. A must-read for every Canadian. Or for that matter, for citizens everywhere who may be in danger of being conned into giving up their birthright by these economic terrorists. — B K, Citizen Granny
In  they promised us a world class city. Instead the people of Vancou-ver got a doubling of the homeless rate, erosion of civil liberties, surveillance cameras, an ever-increasing crime rate, increasing rents, evictions, an ecologi-cal disaster and, to make matters worse, we will be paying for this for the next  years. If you are wondering how this mess came about, this book is an es-sential read.
— C S, director“Five Ring Circus” documentary film;founder, Work Less Party; and author,Workers of the World Relax
New Society Publishers
C  P D: A catalog record for this publication is available from the National Library of Canada.
Copyright ©  by Christopher Shaw. All rights reserved.
Cover design by Diane McIntosh. Images: RF/Sean Gladwell; Punchstock/IZA stock
Printed in Canada. First printing June .
New Society Publishers acknowledges the support of the Government of Canada through the Book Publishing Industry Development Program (BPIDP) for our publishing activities.
Paperback ISBN: ----
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For my children, Ari and Emma, in honor of the living memory of Colleen McCrory and Harriet Nahanee and for that unrepentant, indomitable champion of Mother Earth, Betty Krawczyk.
e Olympic Games are the great Circus Maximus of planet Earth.
V B,     H L’ I  O I¹
Contents
Acknowledgments. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ix Preface . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xi
Part 1. The First Ring: The Cult of the Olympics, Vancouver 2010 and the Opposition . Jack Poole’s Smile . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  . Saying No to : e Fledgling Opposition to the  Games . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   . “Our Time to Shine” . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   . “e Games Are Ours”…and We Do Mean Ours, Not Yours. . . .
Part 2. The Second Ring: The Hidden History of the Olympic Games
. “Higher, Faster, Stronger”: e Myth of the Olympic Games and the Hidden History of the IOC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   . No Games Without a Scandal…or Two…or More . . . . . . . . . . 
Part 3. The Third Ring: It All Starts with Real Estate . VANOC: e Slick New Face of Vancouver’s Games. . . . . . . .  . Johnny Furlong’s Privateers. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   . Kevin Falcon’s Two Trenches. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 
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viii
F R C
Part 4. The Fourth Ring: Olympic Myths and Realities . Selling the Olympics with Journalism “Lite” . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   . “Owning the Podium,” or What’s in It for Me? . . . . . . . . . . . . .   . Selling Snow to Eskimos, or Cookie Cutters Make Cookies . . . . .   . Olympic Economic Cleansing and Gentrification . . . . . . . . . . . 
 . “Imagineering” Security. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   . e Desolate Realities of the “Greenest Games Ever” . . . . . . . . . 
Part 5 The Fifth Ring: Resistance to the Olympics . Breaking the Rings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   . No Games! A Citizen’s Manual of Resistance to the Olympics. . . .   Epilogue: e View from  to  and Beyond . . . . . . . . . . 
 Endnotes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   Index . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .   About the Author. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 
Acknowledgments
e motto of my mother’s family is this:Vincit veritas— truth prevails. Because I believe this to be true, this project was begun. e book may have begun with this belief alone, but it could not have been completed without the contributions both large and small of numerous peo-ple. Space and propriety precludes me from naming them all, but notably there are the following individuals to whom I owe my gratitude: my street medic friends, Jill, Bella, Crimson and Cara who helped me first see what the Olym-pics really was all about. To Phil LeGood for friendship and insight and for picking up a huge role as one of the main NO GAMES  spokespersons. My friend and colleague Conrad Schmidt of the Work Less Party played a major role; it was with him that I first broached the topic of a documentary movie and a book. Charlie Smith, Editor of theGeorgia Straight, deserves special mention since this proj-ect really arose during a conversation with him when he suddenly said, “You know a lot about the Olympics, you should write a book.” He may have been mistaken about my knowledge base, but the seed was sown. My thanks especially to Carolyn Wong who did much of the background research to fill in gaps that I left behind in my mad dash to deadline. Others who provided information or feedback included: David Maidman, Gordon Flett, Ian Gregson, Yolane Beyens, Greg Hamilton, David Eby and Anna Hunter. Many others served as sounding boards for topics raised in the book, particularly my long-time friends Denis Kay and Jill McEachern who offered critical advice at various junctures. Jill, pregnant with our daughter Emma in the year leading to Prague, was particularly supportive at a very difficult time. Other support came from Rosalin Sam and Chief Garry John and others of the St’at’imc, Matt Burrows of theGeorgia Straight, Bella and Crimson, Chuck Gould, Franklin Lopez and Cara Goldberg. Prof. Helen Lenskyj, Andrew Jennings and Stefano Bertone provided important insights on past Olympic Games or the IOC generally. Philippe Praz of the Swiss Embassy in Ottawa provided the much-needed information about the IOC’s tax status in that country. Information was also supplied by members of the Fourth Estate, notably, Bob Mackin, Wendy Cox, Vaughn Palmer and Daphne Bramham. I am grateful also to my erstwhile colleagues in the provincial Green Party for tolerating my obsession with the Games for so long, notably, Adriane Carr and the late environmental champion, Colleen McCrory. In addition, there
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