Toronto Olympic bid for 2020 just got tougher...Less tarmac wait times in U.S.
There's been the odd talk that Toronto's Pan Am Games work for 2015 is part of a desire to once again try for an elusive Olympic bid. The Big Smoke has been toasted twice before in Olympics competition, being humbled by Atlanta for 1996 and by Beijing in the voting for 2008.
It looked a while back as if a 2020 bid for North America would be a good bet, the Summer Games having last been here in Atlanta way back before the age of the Internet. But with the success of the World Cup in South Africa, there's renewed interest in the Olympics making a touchdown in the African continent for the first time ever.
I personally think South Africa should wait and see how the dust settles; maybe save a little money (how's THAT for a thought) and bid for 2024. But International Olympic Committee president Jacques Rogge today told Around the Rings, a very solid Olympics website, that he thinks South Africa should wade into the 2020 Summer Games battle.
Now, when an IOC president says he'd consider a bid from a certain city that carries a reasonable amount of weight. But when he more or less starts soliciting a bid, that's something else entirely.
"We would be delighted to receive a strong bid coming from Africa in general but from South Africa in particular," Rogge told ATR. "They already made a good bid with Cape Town in 1997 when they came a commendable third behind Athens and Rome. But they have the potential there's no doubt about that."
I don't think Toronto should try for the Olympics at all given the horrendous costs for these things, especially the security. We just had a rather nasty experience with securing a big event, and I sense little appetite to do anything remotely similar anytime soon. But if you ARE someone who wants to see the five-ring circus come to T.O., you might want to start thinking about something way off in 2024 cuz I think the fix already might be in for South Africa for 2020.
A vote on the 2020 Games should be held by the IOC in 2013, which means bid cities need to start organizing soon. It'll be interesting to see if any U.S. cities jump in.
Don't forget the Canadian Olympic Committee and its now Quebec-oriented management team is already kicking the ties for another Winter Olympic bid, possibly in 2022 for Quebec City.
U.S. PASSENGER PROTECTION RULES WORKING...TOO BAD ABOUT CANADA
May was the first full month that new U.S. government rules were in place to protect passengers from being stuck on airport tarmacs for too long. And, wouldn't you know it, flight delays were WAY down.
A new federal law down south says airlines have to let passengers off a plane if it's been stuck for more than three hours, or face a fine of up to $27,500 per passenger. Airlines cried about it, but figures show there were only FIVE such delays in May; the second-lowest monthly total in several years. There were 268 such delays in June of 2009, said USA Today.
The airlines say good weather helped, but people who pushed for the law aren't buying it.
"This rule is a resounding success," said Kate Hanni of a group called FlyersRights.org.
Isn't it great to see a powerful government taking on the airlines in order to protect its citizens. Isn't that a concept? Well, don't expect it in Canada. Prime Minister Stephen Harper's government has shown ZERO interest in jumping out of the collective laps of the Canadian airline industry, and I get absolutely NO indication that's about to change.
Too bad there's no opposition leader who could point this out to ordinary Canadians....