No surprise here: the simpering cultural sycophants of the granola media are declaring the Obamajunta's disastrous loss of the Olympics bid a victory for bossa nova music and that poor man's Hugo Chavez. How quaint!
I'm sure some, in their organic community gardening, self-esteem overflowing hearts, actually do expect Michael Phelps to once again take a break from getting stoned to ply the old Rosetta Stone in the service of conversational Portuguesa. (Oh, to hear what Magellan might think about that!)
But the jaundiced-eyed realists among us know the real victor in this struggle was declared long before Obama's $50 million effort was so devastatingly "O-botched-a": the 2008 Olympics. Barring the return of Christ the Savior Himself never again in our lifetimes do I expect to watch an Olympics as paradigm-bustingly spectacular as last year's meticulously well-planned games in Peking.
The 2008 Games marked the official, definitive emergence of China as the world's superpower. In a year the American economy back home was gasping its final breaths before succumbing to the lethal tug of a sordid legacy of affirmative action mortgages promulgated by Barney Frank and Freddie Mac, China would be the only major country whose GDP actually grew.
In a year a majority of American voters finally capitulated to the siren song of socialism, China reached out and took a firm and decisive grasp on the Baton of Market Capitalist Freedom. The rest of this great race, readers, is China's to run.
It all goes back to numbers. Numbers form the architecture of the capital markets and by extension, freedom. But Americans are number wimps, spoiled by decades of pork barrel grade inflation, "recentered" standardized test scores and the wrongheaded notion that free markets can also be a place of "minimum" wages, mortgage "renegotiations" and 800 SAT points just for signing your name.
The Chinese people, by contrast, hold an innate reverence for numbers. When the International Olympics Committee blessed China with their unprecedented economic development opportunity in 2008, the whole nation rallied around the number eight, declaring it sacred and putting the wheels in motion for per capita GDP to surpass $8,000 that very year!
And while Americans were whining and moaning about unfair treatment from the judges sabotaging their precious athletes, they utterly missed the real lesson: the nation that aces its math tests is the nation that captures the global economy is the nation that decides who receives the highest score in freestyle gymnastics. Were we too preoccupied with "sports" to comprehend this basic truth?
Because we were certainly seemed too busy with another thing: words. Contrary to what the Plagiarist In Chief might have you believe, they really are "just words" and further, if they're coming from the mouths of liberals "words" is probably just a nicer word for "whining."
The Chinese understand this. I've been reading a new and fascinating book called The Snakehead on how the enterprising people of Fuchow, China outsmarted international immigration and transportation authorities to effectively colonize downtown New York City. These were the lower classes of China, hardy folks with third and fourth grade educations — and yet they formed mind-bogglingly elaborate supply chain operations, opened Chinese restaurants in every last end of the earth (one of their first targets: our great helmsman's native Mombasa) and bribed authorities in at least three dozen different countries. All without ever learning any other languages but their own; the numbers, as the saying goes, did all the talking.
As it happens I have met some of these hardworking Chinese in my current neighborhood in downtown New York City. They're impossible to miss: they own most of the restaurants, the laundromats and the real estate brokerages. And I could not escape the thought that some elementary language skills might come in handy from a revenue perspective in the case that an English speaker, say, loses her laundry receipt and the bag cannot be located, or finds herself on a Chinatown bus headed to Cleveland when she thought she was specifying "Washington."
But that is such a short-term view. In due time, we'll all be fluent in the native tongue of the laundromat and the Chinatown bus — no doubt because we'll be working for them. That's just freedom at work, readers, and the best we can hope is to better prepare the next generation for the calculus Olympics.
Maureen Tkacik is a senior fellow at the Institute for Pragmatic Prosperity the author of (Home)School of Bach: The Seven Habits Of Highly Effective Home Headmistresses. A graduate of the Corpus Christi Christian College for Women in St. Louis, she lives in New York City and votes in her native Columbus.