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British BS

The headline in The Times (London) reads "US medal boasts economical with the truth." The article's author, a fellow named Gerald Baker states that:

Americans are celebrating another triumph at the Olympic Games. Their total medal tally of 103 once again put them comfortably ahead of their nearest rivals, Russia, and has produced predictable chest-thumping in the United States media.

What a load of crap. On a per capita basis, the US would lead the Olympics in one category: Y..A..W..N..S. There was less celebrating in the US during the last two weeks than there was in Manchester for Michael Owen's ultimately useless goal against Portugal.

But worse, Mr. Baker, you were scooped on your primary theme days ago by Paul Blumstein, who noted that the US was "near the bottom among the 73 countries that have won at least one medal, with only about 0.83 medals per $100 billion of GDP." The article first appeared in the Washington Post, was reprinted at, and remarked upon here.

And "predictable chest-thumping" by the US media? Well, we can't match your lot, oooo, not even close, and you know it. The general sense of things here is captured by Tom Shales, the media critic in the town listed under your byline (in case you hadn't noticed):

What, over so soon? It's as though the Summer Games from Athens began a mere eternity or two ago. The sports marathon didn't even seem to attract the usual gaggle of wags to rename it jeeringly: The Low-lympics? The Slow-lympics? The Almost No-lympics?

That's right, our rabble-rousers have not been roused, not at all, by the events in Athens. It's a shame that your readers have been misinformed, Mr. Baker. I thought The Times was better than that.

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