The Greco-Romans held their Olympics to celebrate the beauty of the human form, in the hope that a sound body will produce a sound mind. Mens sana in corpore sano, was how Juvenal put it, adding that this was a prayer, not a confident expectation.
The sideshow created in modern times celebrates the deformity of body and mind. The only intellectual attainment on display is that of chemists and pharmacologists serving the debasement of man, as practised by immoral states.
In that regard, I was extremely impressed by the 16-year-old Chinese girl who swam her 50m freestyle faster than the male gold-medal winner in the same event. In doing so, she beat her own best time by a full five seconds.
Ye Shewen then passed the obligatory drug test, and more power to her. Yet experts in the sport have nonetheless suggested that the poor girl’s achievement wasn’t just physical but also chemical. If that’s so, and China has form in that sort of thing, then all I can do is congratulate the Chinese pharmacologists involved in developing the substance that can produce such sporting excellence while remaining undetectable.
In general, chemists, pharmacologists and drug companies are the unsung heroes of the Games, and I do hope they’ll get the acclaim they deserve. I mean, anyone can build a girl up on steroids, then pump her full of speed, break an ampoule of amyl nitrate under her nose and point her in the direction of the swimming pool. But that sort of thing would be instantly found out by the simplest of tests. Something much more sophisticated may have been concocted, so three cheers for modern science in the service of excellence.
Such pharmacological achievement goes back a long time. I remember those East German swimmers, females with male bodies and voices to match. When this was pointed out to their coach, he responded wittily that his girls were swimmers, not singers. In fact they were neither. They were actually freaks created by totalitarian Frankensteins to further their propaganda objectives.
Another recollection: star female gymnasts, such as Olga Korbut and Nadia Comaneci, were as flat as washboards while they competed, only to grow to what I’d estimate as a respectable Size 34C a couple of years after retiring at age 20 or so. Somehow I don’t think their previously masculine physiques were shaped entirely by diet and exercise.
Sound bodies? Just look at the freaky weightlifters, especially the female ones. Or how about the cyclist Robert Forstemann’s thighs, each thicker than his waist and five times as thick as his calves? If this is testimony to beauty, then modern aesthetic standards need revising. Or read the harrowing stories of those East German girls disabled for life by steroids, unable to have children (one of them, a perfectly normal girl, actually turned into a man and had to have a transsex operation).
As to the sound minds, the poor creatures, especially those coming from totalitarian countries like China, have no chance of developing them – even assuming that they possess the requisite ability and motivation. They train day in, day out, going through a body-breaking regimen and being force-fed like geese supplying foie gras. At least in reasonably free countries the children and their parents have the choice of opting for normal development. In China and North Korea they don’t.
But it’s not just the evil regimes that are to blame for this obscene spectacle. We all have a charge to answer to – that of agreeing to play the game by the rules set by monsters.
For we too encourage and finance children to turn into professional freaks at a time when they ought to be learning how to read decent books, listen to real music and replace x and y variables with numbers. We seem to accept the standards of achievement first laid down by Nazi Germany in 1936 and then pushed to foul extremes by the Soviets and their spawns.
What do you do all day, little Vania? I jump over a plank and train to be able to set the plank higher. All day? Yes, of course, for if I waste an hour or two on books, a capitalist will jump higher, making my country look bad and depriving my family of their flat in a prefabricated block.
What a miserable, dehumanising existence that is. And the only way to put an end to it would be for all supposedly decent governments to refuse to subsidise potential Olympians, as India has done. If parents want to fund the budding javelin-thrower, then by all means they should do so, in the knowledge that they’re consigning their child to a lopsided existence, retarded development and extremely uncertain rewards.
Tennis parents do that sort of thing, hoping that the child will eventually earn a decent living on the professional circuit, where even a Number 70 or 80 can become wealthy. What about a Number 80, or even Number 2, javelin-thrower? That poor child would have to sacrifice normal life for his country’s success, not his own. And any half-decent country should tell him in no uncertain terms that it neither needs his sacrifice nor will pay for it.
The greatest show on earth? More like the most corrupt, the most mendacious, the most dishonest. I mean, you don’t believe the hundreds of thousands US ‘college’ athletes receive really are ‘scholarships’, do you?
Let’s return the Olympics to the pre-Nazi, pre-Commie, pre ‘college’ days of true amateurism. And if the likes of China still insist on cheating and turning children into ghastly dehumanised automata, then let them have their own Games and compete against North Korea. Good luck to them.