Voting in Venice Beach. This is California // Getty Images

Voting in Venice Beach. This is California // Getty Images

2024 Bid Cities

The Olympics and President-elect Donald J. Trump

A Romanian friend and I were talking the other day about the campaign for the 2024 Summer Olympics.

If Paris wins, he said, it will be a thoroughly French Olympics. But if it’s Los Angeles — that, he said, would be an international Games with the potential to prove truly transformational for the Olympic movement in the 21st century.

Max Siegel, USATF chief executive, earlier this summer // Errol Anderson

Max Siegel, USATF chief executive, earlier this summer // Errol Anderson

Track and field

Race-based character assassination, and more

Anyone who has spent a number of years in journalism recognizes a story written with the full intent of being submitted at the end of the year, maybe as part of a package, to prize juries.

The question is whether the Washington Post story published Friday about USA Track & Field also gets recognized for what it further is: a story laced with implicit bias about the only federation in the U.S. Olympic scene with significant African-American leadership as well as one driven by source interviews animated by the same stupid, tiresome, fourth grade-style playground politics that have in years past all but destroyed USATF.

Italian Olympic Committee president Giovanni Malago kisses Rome Mayor Virginia Raggi's hand at Euro 2020 event, Malago saying, "I always do that with people I don't know that well" // Getty Images

Italian Olympic Committee president Giovanni Malago kisses Rome Mayor Virginia Raggi's hand at Euro 2020 event, Malago saying, "I always do that with people I don't know that well" // Getty Images

2024 Bid Cities

Rome 2024: it’s about time

Maybe corruption is everywhere within and around the Olympic movement. Or maybe not. Maybe an Olympic Games is a financial boondoggle. Or maybe not.

The International Olympic Committee needs to better understand — and then confront — the perception, widely held around the world and particularly in its longstanding base in Europe, that the movement stands not for inspiration but distress. This is a huge problem. This problem is now playing out in the campaign for the 2024 Summer Games. Real life has revealed Agenda 2020, the IOC’s 2014 would-be reform program, for what it always was, mostly lip service. The institution needs big changes in the way in which it selects cities to stage the Games, in particular its franchise, the Summer Olympics.

WADA officials Olivier Niggli and Craig Reedie at a conference earlier this year in Lausanne, Switzerland, the IOC's home base // Getty Images

WADA officials Olivier Niggli and Craig Reedie at a conference earlier this year in Lausanne, Switzerland, the IOC's home base // Getty Images

Doping

The ‘Fancy Bear’ bid to stir up chaos

Within hours after the release by Russian hackers of U.S. athletes’ doping results, Victor Conte, the Bay-Area based figure at the center of the BALCO scandal, a guy who knows what’s what when it comes to the doping scene, sent out a note Tuesday to a wide email circle. It said, in part, “This is gonna get ugly.”

Gonna get ugly?! This is ugly from the get-go. And it’s likely to stay ugly for the foreseeable future.