Not Following The Train-Wreck In Rio Ahead Of The Olympics? Let’s Catch You Up.

Not Following The Train-Wreck In Rio Ahead Of The Olympics? Let’s Catch You Up.


The year is 2009. Brazil is booming: The Economist magazine
predicted that the country’s economy would soon leapfrog Britain and France to become
the 5th largest in the world. And, Rio de Janeiro just won hosting privileges
for the 2016 Olympic Games. The whole country is celebrating. Let’s fast forward 7 years and see how that
panned out. Brazil is facing its worst economic and political
crisis since the 1930s. President Dilma Roussef was impeached in May, the games are 51% over budget, and at least 4,200 families have lost their
homes due to Olympic construction. In short, Rio is close to bankruptcy, prompting
the governor to declare a “State of Financial Emergency” in July. That means delayed salaries for civil servants, including police officers, who say they won’t
be able to adequately protect the city during the games. Meanwhile, crime rates are surging and the city has seen 135% increase in officer-related
deaths in the run-up to the Olympics. Brazil’s answer: deploying 85,000 armed
soldiers and police, twice that used in the London games four years ago. Then, there’s the health issues. For starters, Rio’s water is fill with raw
sewage. Yep — the very water where athletes will be swimming and boating. The Associated Press found levels of disease-causing
viruses are 1.7 million times what’s considered highly alarming in the U.S. And a group of Brazilian scientists have recently
detected drug-resistant bacteria. And we haven’t even gotten to Zika, the mosquito-borne illness linked to serious
birth defects. While the Centers for Disease Control said
it’s unlikely the Olympics will increase global risk, Half a million people are estimated to flood
into Rio and a lot is still unknown about the virus. During the Olympics in Brazil, 10,500 athletes
from over 200 nations will compete in 28 sports for a chance to win 306 sets of medals. But what happens after the torch goes out
and everyone leaves?

2 Replies to “Not Following The Train-Wreck In Rio Ahead Of The Olympics? Let’s Catch You Up.”

  1. I am very disappointed that Brazil was not able to reach the economic goals that President Lula had put into  motion. I hope the games are more successful than your forecast. Brazil has a great future. The nation I am sure will navigate these times successfully and with typical Brazilian optimism..

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