Charles Banks-Altekruse, a former Olympic rower, has published an op-ed in the New York Times that makes a provocative proposal. Banks-Altekruse argues that the Olympic Games should meet at a permanent location and abandon the rotating structure that has been in place since the advent of the modern Olympics.
Banks-Altekruse argues that the Olympics have been unprofitable in recent years, but he does not do a good job linking the financial performance of the games to the roving structure. Banks-Altekruse also argues that a stationary site would prevent political disruptions that sometimes prevent athletes from competing (e.g., in Moscow and Beijing). Banks-Altekruse was prevented from going to Moscow in 1980 due to the US boycott.
Even at a very young age, I believed that the boycott was absolutely unfair. But this is not a common occurrence, and the solution could also mean that athletes and others should place political demands on their nations -- rather than create a fixed site for the games.
Banks-Altekruse proposes Switzerland as a venue, but I believe that the cultural significance of the rotating structure is too rich to abandon -- especially in the absence of solid evidence that it makes the games unprofitable. What do you think?