Thursday, 9 August 2012

Winning the Olympics

As the medals are totted up it is worth noting that the Member States of the European Union are way out in front for medals.  Even excluding the United Kingdom* - whose people undoubtedly and with impeccable reasoning wish to leave the Union asap - Europe is still tens of golds ahead of China, the United States and Russia.

It might be argued that Europe is not competing as one nation.  True.  But the evident popular desire to remain together as Europe is a powerful argument that a majority of Europeans can be pleased that not only their individual countries but their continent  provides a sporting environment that leads the world.

Adding the medals score of the United Kingdom to the European Union medals' numbers takes Europe's achievement out of the reach of any other part of the world.  Sometimes, in the concerns over the renewal and development of the European political settlement that is generating so much financial unease, we forget that our continent is a better place than most others.

* If we count the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth (including South Africa, even though) they are nearly catching the EU medal count without (most properly) the UK.

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