That’s what our government spent, as a minimum, on each medal we won at the Winter Olympics this year. Two hundred and thirty million, seven hundred and seventy thousand dollars… at least. That figure doesn’t take into account the subsidies that athletes get, and any other amounts beyond the obvious $6 billion that was bounced around before the Olympics.
Each medal won cost every man, woman, and child in this country a little over $7. That’s money out of your pocket, your kids’ pockets, your neighbour’s pockets, the pockets of the homeless guy who lives behind the dumpster outside your office, the pockets of the students who are saddled with debt and wondering where next year’s tuition is coming from, the pockets of the people who are languishing on wait lists for health care, the pockets of the soldiers dealing with ancient equipment in the war zone we sent them to, the pocket of the single mom down the road who is wondering where tomorrow’s lunch is coming from, and the pockets of her two children who are wondering the same thing.
People have been known to call me cold-hearted. Well, if you can look at those 26 medals and say with a straight face that the money that was paid to win them couldn’t have been better spent for the benefit of all Canadians, then you are absolutely a world-class expert on being cold-hearted. Even not spending it at all would benefit all Canadians more than 26 medals.
I am truly happy for all of our athletes who competed, whether or not they won a medal.
I just can’t reconcile the benefit with the price we paid.