Sport: A Year to Go and Counting

For a mere $475 million, 12,000 athletes and 17 new events

After the showy 1908 London Games, France's Baron Pierre de Coubertin, then president of the International Olympic Committee, shook his head and declared, "The Games must be less expensive." Nice point, Baron. Unfortunately, national pride intent on outdoing predecessors has blossomed, and so have the deficits. The 1976 Montreal gathering, for instance, wound up $1 billion in the red, and the Moscow Games three years ago required a nation-strapping $9 billion to stage. But last week, with a year to go and counting, the Los Angeles Olympic Organizing Committee, a private...

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