Owning the podium doesn't necessarily involve owning the podium - Macleans.ca

Owning the podium doesn’t necessarily involve owning the podium


The Heritage Minister clarifies.

Heritage Minister James Moore attended an International Media Centre celebratory event in Vancouver Tuesday with the new ice-dance champions and said the name of the Own the Podium program should not be taken literally. “It’s not, ‘First place or bust,’ ” said Moore. “It’s … ‘Go for gold and go for broke and do yourself proud and perform at the best of your ability.'”


Owning the podium doesn’t necessarily involve owning the podium

  1. Fine. But why does it go always seem to go along with medal predictions? That seems to me like trash talking before the game. Not usually a good plan.

  2. Love the title.

    This is so lame. The athletes are doing fine. We're raking in the medals, especially gold. There's no need to start pronouncing obvious reversals as Moore is doing here.

  3. Way to go James : we need more people to stand up and stop the kvetching crowd from ruining things as usual. By the way harper haters make up your mind either you hate harper for supporting Own The Podium or you hate him for not giving even more money than we are – sorry folks but the hypocrisy just reeks if you start crticizing harper for the so called cut back which isn't a cutback .. make up your mind you can't have it both ways.

    • Own the podium began preHarper, i believe. Funding for Olympic athletes began preHarper, in fact.
      Not that you'll hear these facts coming from those who suckle at the breast of Capitoline Wolf, er Harper's PMO…

    • Thanks, for that false choice, psiclone. I've got a better idea – let's try to get it right next time.

  4. Now when it comes to the other program Owning the Odium

  5. I don't wholly disagree with Moore. And I do think the name "owning" was a little too on the nose. Nevertheless, when you invest substantial taxpayer dollars in athletics, a discussion about ROI and an examination of results and value for money beyond "everyone have fun and try hard" is absolutely warranted. The success of the program should be evaluated just as any other government-funded program is — the investment of taxpayer dollars demands it.

    That said, it's not time to pass that judgement yet. Let's get all the results in first. And let's not get hung-up in the name of the program. For me, it will be about improving performance. We're not going to own the podium tonight, but we should see progress for the investment.

    • We'll certainly see progress in the number of gold medals won by Canada. We'll have at least eight by the end of the games, and possibly as many as ten.

      • I think we're going to get more than 10. With Hockey and Curling still to go, I'd say our worst-case scenario is 8 (we win only one gold of the 4 in Hockey and Curling) but with just those two sports it's not impossible that we'd hit 11 (if we won all 4). Beyond that, I'm pretty sure there are still some gold medal hopefuls left in some other sports that may come through as well.

        I think if we do win 10 or more gold medals, that's a pretty good improvement for the team no matter where we end up in the overall medal count (likely 3rd by total count, and possibly first or second if you rank by Golds – which I believe is the IOC's official ranking method – right now we're tied for first in Gold medals with the U.S. and Germany).

      • We just hit ten gold, and we're through to the gold medal games in hockey and men's curling, and we have a gold medal race against the U.S. for long track speed skating pursuit tomorrow where we're going for gold and are guaranteed no worse than silver. Twenty-one medals awarded with a guaranteed total of twenty-four.

        I'd say we did pretty good.

  6. Well I'm glad he straightened that out.

  7. Actually, we do own the podium. We're just renting it out to the Americans. The suckers.

  8. Our slogan should have been: "Go for Gold". Much less open to misinterpretation.

    • or perhaps "Go for the Podium"

  9. Moore's clarification is a little late. There are three things wrong with Own the Podium: (1) the boastful over-reach, which arguably does not sit well with Canadian sensibilities, and needlessly opens us up to ridicule after the fact; (2) restrictions on international training with foreign athletes in favour of scientific/technocratic domestic training; and (3) encouragement of bronze medal athletes to go for broke in their attempts to win gold, resulting in sub-medal finishes.

    But there's one big thing that's right about Own the Podium: the encouragement (financial and coaching) of our athletes. Apparently Flaherty is going to slash athlete funding in the upcoming budget. Wow, that's just great! Because the government didn't get some sort of popularity boost and/or bragging rights from these games, it's open season on our athletic programs. I guess losing athletes are relegated to mere culture, to be dismissed in the government's view. Whenever this government learns a lesson, it's invariably the wrong one.

    • Didn't you hear? Flaherty didn't change anything with the budget. No cuts, just another 19 billion in stimulus programs.

  10. James Moore speaking about sports. Isn't it a lot like Maxime Bernier talking about science?

    • Next, James Moore will be talking about busty biker chicks.

  11. James Moore should stick to talking about the UFC. Secretly he wants Canada to Own the Octagon.