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Olympic Games “Well Worth” the Investment, Say Majority of Britons

Olympic Games “Well Worth” the Investment, Say Majority of Britons

As the Olympics draw to a close, a new poll released by the Guardian reveals that 55 percent of Britons feel that the Games were worth the massive investment. Most people felt that the giant extravaganza of events and competitions has boosted morale and cheered a country that has been struggling economically and socially.

The Guardian notes that respondents were specifically reminded of the cost of the games, which came at the price of about £9 billion, or just over $14 billion, a hefty sum in a country that has seen increasing pressure from Prime Minister David Cameron to push for greater austerity measures.

Only about 35 percent of the approximately 2,000 respondents felt that the cost was too high and that they were a distraction from the real economic and social issues of the U.K. Asia One News notes that the final extravagant price tag ended up being four times more than original estimates. Still, most people feel that the “feelgood factor” will linger for a little while to come even as the Bank of England is forecasting a zero percent growth in the wake of the eurozone crisis.

The most divided respondents from the United Kingdom were people from Scotland. They had a split vote with 42 percent supporting the cost of the Games and 42 percent saying it was too expensive. Youth were prevalent in the poll as well, with 60 percent of respondents under 35 throughout Britain supporting the Games.

Although the United Kingdom is hosting the Games and will most likely feel the buzz of energy and excitement on a greater scale, other countries have also experienced a morale boost from the Olympic Games. One Australian blogger posted a review of the Olympic Games and what they mean for his country:

Despite being a nation of people who are supposedly wealthier, healthier and more informed than ever, our Aussie “comfortable and relaxed” meter is at a very low ebb. Recent Essential Media Communications research has confirmed this, suggesting Australia is a pretty miserable place right now.

At the heart of our concerns is the community’s lack of faith in the integrity of just about every major institution in our society at the moment: our governments (and oppositions), our banks, the media, the church, and so on.

It’s at times like this we tend to look to our sporting teams and sportspeople to add meaning and richness to our lives, to provide something that represents us, something larger than us that can shine through self-serving spin and agendas and act as a beacon of virtue and integrity. Cue the greatest sporting spectacle on earth.

Another interesting angle of the recent Guardian survey and study is that many respondents seemed to back the idea of multicultural London and UK. While much of the political rhetoric has stated that the population wants to curb immigration, many respondents believe that the UK is stronger for its multicultural background. 68 percent of respondents stated that they believe Britain is stronger with a diverse population. Still, many respondents also said that they believe immigrants did not actually offer anything constructive for Britain as a whole, suggesting undercurrents in a country that continues to struggle with its identity and its imperial legacy.


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Photo Credit: The National Archives UK

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9:56AM PDT on Aug 16, 2012

Apart from the Macdonalds and Coke BS, I am VERY proud of my country and what we achieved for the Olympics.
Before the Olympics I was kinda down on the whole thing wondering how the UK would mess it all up and if not the UK, the people of the UK. But we did good you know, we can stand proud in the eyes of the world, mostly, for once and none of the trolling and negativity is gonna take that away

8:18AM PDT on Aug 16, 2012

i love sport and i think the Olympics was really amazing with great British athletes doing amazing but i think that if people thought about what good that kind of money could do in our country in terms of social reforms they would defiantly pause there are lots of great areas in our society but lots of poverty and problems too more money needs to go into where the people live in terms of making life better for all then where people work and making working longer more important

4:54AM PDT on Aug 16, 2012

Well worth it

2:43AM PDT on Aug 15, 2012

The Olympics are fascism in disguise…+
Imagine someone struggling for water to drink,looking at the swimming competition…You will tell me,’well if he’s struggling for water,probably we don’t have television’…right!I think you can get my point…Olympics is an auto glorifying tool for rich countries…On the side,I love sports anyway,but not as a mean to show your power (economically,etc)…+
Read the real history of the Olympic Board(and it’s theories)…You’ll be amazed.It’s a big,big maffia…period.

8:15PM PDT on Aug 14, 2012

I'd like to react to the quote from the Australian Blogger. It left me wondering if perhaps it is a segment of an article from a 3rd Century Roman newspaper freely translated into English. Written as the Old Order was crumbling and the Plebs was calling for "Panem at Circenses !"
"Bread and Games !"

2:59PM PDT on Aug 14, 2012

Its the MONEY! Hopefully Britain and Europe can get out of this horrible recession.

1:34PM PDT on Aug 14, 2012


11:18AM PDT on Aug 14, 2012

No problem, as far as I'm concerned, they can have them again next time.

Lots of better places to spend the money in this country.

9:14AM PDT on Aug 14, 2012

In my last comment, Sarah B should have been Susan B. Sorry.

8:17AM PDT on Aug 14, 2012

The British health care system, like most, is having difficulties. How about if these billions that were coughed for the Olympics went to health care instead?

I used to love the Olympics, but now I realize it is just big business that is getting bigger. Put the money into health care and let's have leave behind these billion dollar extravaganzas that do nothing aside from set an example that it is okay to spend nonexistent money on crap and/or go into debt because you "want" something.

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