The IOC president, Thomas Bach // IOC


Congress, yet again, proves Mark Twain right

“Suppose,” the American author and humorist Mark Twain once said, “you were an idiot. And suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself.”

The United States House of Representatives, which can’t agree on gun control legislation or pretty much anything, makes it a priority in the doldrums of a Washington summer to weigh in on issues sparked by allegations of doping in international sport?

Source: ComScore


Walking the walk, Part 2: what new sports for the Olympics?

KAZAN, Russia — This week in Tokyo, eight sports are making their pitches to be part of the 2020 Olympics. For those eight, being part of the Olympic program would mean hundreds of millions of dollars, particularly as governments around the world look to develop athletes, coaches, facilities and grass-roots participation structures.

Understanding just how much interest there is in what might be added to a future Olympic sports program, the chairman of the Tokyo 2020 coordination commission, John Coates, said back in February: “The whole world is looking at this process, not just the people of Japan. Many sports are interested and this is going to be a very transparent process.”

Sepp Blatter during the June 2 news conference at FIFA headquarters // Getty Images


Sepp Blatter is resigning — or is he?

Way back when in journalism school at Northwestern, they taught us to be entirely skeptical about a great many things. The lesson they taught us in Evanston went like this: if your mother says she loves you, check it out.

This maxim comes to mind now in assessing the state of soccer’s world governing body, FIFA, and in particular the status of its president, Sepp Blatter. Thousands upon thousands of words have been written since he purported earlier this month to be resigning. Yet among all those words, perhaps the most relevant seem to be missing amid that “resignation”: a resignation letter.

IOC president Thomas Bach meets in Sochi with Russian president Vladimir Putin


The IOC president as Action Man

SOCHI, Russia — There are apples. And there are oranges. The International Olympic Committee this week put out a news release, amid the provocation launched by SportAccord president Marius Vizer, that all but begs any and all to make the comparison.

IOC president Thomas Bach, the release noted, enjoyed “another full week” that included meetings around the world with world leaders and dignitaries — and kids! — “championing the importance of sport in society and its ability to spread peace.”

Mexico's Mario Vazquez Raña // photo courtesy OEM


Mario Vazquez Raña dies: the passing of an era

Mario Vazquez Raña of Mexico died Sunday. He was 82. With him goes an era.

Don Mario was indisputably the most important man in the Olympic movement in the entire western hemisphere. His ways may have been old-fashioned but his love for the movement and the so-called “Olympic family” were unquestioned. His counsel served International Olympic Committee presidents Juan Antonio Samaranch and Jacques Rogge. His jet, too.