AUGUST 7th 2008
Those who complain that China is not moving fast enough in changing the way its society is managed fall broadly into two categories. Those who have directly suffered what they consider to be injustice at the hands of the state and its agents along with their relatives and close friends, and those who have not but think that they could do a better job of running the country if they were in charge. George W Bush, a super-cretin if ever there was one, is, I assume, in the second category.

I would recommend a study of European and American history of the past few hundred years before venturing an opinion on China. If there is any chance of this planet remaining a reasonable habitat for civilised human beings and their descendants it will in my view be thanks as much to the Chinese and the cultural developments of which they are an example as any other part of the human family. 

The current instability in the world's economies is 100% due to the actions taken by the administrations of the last two American presidents, Clinton and G W Bush.
This file is now opened to record the situation in China and its relations with the world as affected by the coming Olympics and the various actions and remarks, from the admirable to the cretinous, of the participants and attenders.

AUGUST 8th 2008
The opening ceremony went well, a stunning spectacle. I do not think it was produced by slave labour or at some unacceptable price in terms of human rights or freedom. The conclusion I would draw is to advise the organisers of London 2012 Olympics against doing a firework display - I think that's now been done.

AUGUST 11th 2008
But who cares what I think. According to Murdoch's SKY NEWS:

The ceremony has been strongly criticised by architect Ai Weiwei, who helped design the Bird's Nest stadium.

Writing on his blog, Mr Ai described the ceremony as "a recycling of the rubbish of fake classical culture tradition; a sacrilegious visual garbage dump and an insult to the spirit of liberty; low class sound play that's just noise pollution".

He was directly critical of China's ruling communist party, characterising the ceremony as "a showcase of the reincarnation of the Marxist imperialism; the ultimate paragon of an all embracing culture of fascist totalitarianism; an encyclopaedia that encompasses total defeat in intellectual spirit."

Mr Ai helped design the stadium alongside Swiss architect firm, Herzog and de Meuron.

But since then, he has become an outspoken blogger against the Olympics and the Chinese regime. Unusually, he has not been censored by the authorities.

Hell, I enjoyed it. Wasn't that the idea? I got the impression the performers did too - was that just out of terror of being seen not looking happy?

AUGUST 17th 2008
No major catastrophes so far. Most countries have complained about the judging of the boxing, but that seems to be a problem with boxing in quite a few places. The British team are doing well considering the modest pool (numerically) we have to draw on.

Beijing Olympics medal table

  G      S      B    T    
30 13 10 54
19 19 24 62
Team GB
11 6 8 25
9 5 6 20
8 10 11 29
Medal table last updated 12.20 UK Time. To view full medal table, click here. To view all Team GB medallists click here.

AUGUST 20th 2008
GB doing even better. We are in 3rd place for Gold medals and 4th overall. The links above apply. We are told it the investment in athletes that has brough this about. The message should be that for 2012 in London we should spend money on athletes and fixing transport and basic logistics, not on over-elaborate presentation of the games.

The strangest sight was a Russian lady leading a walking race by miles because she wasn't walking. That was obvious even without the slow motion filming which showed clearly she lef the ground with both feet on every stride. If she is not disqualified, what's the point?

AUGUST 22 2008

Olympics host China received another gold last week, when U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson presented Chinese officials with a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold award for the 2008 Olympic village. The world-class sustainable development boasts a variety of features including solar panels, green roofs, and an extensive rainwater recycling system.

While China's pollution problems and their growing carbon footprint are a major global concern (China is now the largest greenhouse gas emitter by volume), the country made strides in an effort to "green" and clean up the city of Beijing for the Games, spending 17.6 billion dollars to reduce pollution and emissions. Let's hope the short-term successes in support of the Olympics provide a model for China's future, and the country vigorously addresses its significant contribution to global warming.

AUGUST 23rd 2008
A few failures for GB but on the whole still good performances and more medals. Even one in boxing!.
taekwondo went a bit pearshaped, some bad judging was corrected but rather upset our competitor who managed a bronze. Cubans a bit strange - one bit our boxder, the other head-kicked an official. But it could have been worse! To view full medal table, click here. To view all Team GB medallists click here.

AUGUST 24th 2008
The games have come to a successful conclusion. There were many who expected problems at all levels and atmospheric pollution that would affect athletes. They were wrong, because they underestimated to commitment of the Chinese government and the performance of those who carried out the necessary work in preparation and management. Only good will have come from these games. However, I am still in favour, after the London games, of them finding a permanent home in Athens with Greece being assisted by all the participating Nations with the finance.

Nobody could possible feel anything other than hope for the world after witnessing the closing ceremonies of the 2008 Olympic Games. Difficulties lie ahead, but the idea that the competitive nature of animal life on this planet dooms us to endless war is not borne out, though the management of resources and the control of population is surely  what we need to take care of.

SEPTEMBER 18th 2007
Britain has achieved a remarkable medal tally in the Paralymics -
We have come second overall, next to Chna.
Is it that our Paralympians are better trained and more spirited than most countries? Or is it that for some reason we have, amongst our well fed and spirited young people who aspire to athleticism, an abnormal number who are disabled due to probems engendered by our modern industrial society, saved and assisted by that same technological environment to live their dream as best they may?

OCTOBER 17th 2008
It must be obvious now that having the Olympics in China was a very good idea. Journalisitc freedoms explored during the games are being cautiously extended now in time and geographical location. Journalists are still followed and harried on occasions. In the west, journalists stalk and harry the public and the people they call or make 'celebrities', Many might prefer the Chinese situation.