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by Dale Connelly, 7/28/00

Dc: The bribery scandal surrounding the Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City has raised many questions about previous bidding by other cities for earlier games. Questions like: Have other towns paid to get the Olympics? What did it cost? How many cities paid and weren't successful?
Wouldn't that be frustrating if that happened to you?
With me is Susan G. (not her real name or initial). She was co-director of one city's failed bid to get the summer games … and kindly agreed to be interviewed but she has asked that we not use the city's real name or the year for which the bid was made.

Susan: You can do it, as long as you don't use the real city or year.

Dc: You are really embarrassed by this, aren't you!

Susan: I am ashamed of what we did.

Dc: Because it was wrong.

Susan: Because we failed. And it was wrong. And our bribe wasn't good enough. We were naive. We are small town people and we didn't know … how to do this. We didn't know the ropes, the accepted way of doing business.

Dc: Still, you must have talked to someone about … what's this?

Susan: What's what?

Dc: Under the table. There's something.

Susan: I don't know what you're talking about.

Dc: A box of chocolates. You pushed a box of chocolates into my lap.

Susan: Did I? I don't think I did.

Dc: Of course you did.

Susan: Maybe you already had them there and you forgot.

Dc: You were trying to influence me. But why?
To get a more positive interview?

Susan: No, no. That wouldn't work … would it?

Dc: NO!

Susan: I didn't think so. I mean of course not.

Dc: So this is what you tried with the Olympic committee?

Susan: No! Heck no. These are International People!
We knew it would take more than … just a box of candy.

Dc: But a box of candy will do for me?

Susan: I didn't say that.

Dc: What did you try on the selection committee? Was it free tuition?
Or a car? Or jewelry?

Susan: No, no. We went out and got …you know, kitchen appliances, towels, clock radios, that kind of thing. Stuff we thought the members of the committee didn't have in their home countries, but of course they did, and they were insulted that we thought they didn't have this stuff.
Our mistake. We should have known.

Dc: So in every bribe you're making a set of assumptions that are … what the … what's coming under the table now?

Susan: Under the table? I don't know what you mean.

Dc: This is a watch.

Susan: A watch?

Dc: Don't act surprised!

Susan: Maybe it's your watch.

Dc: I don't wear a watch.

Susan: I noticed that.

Dc: I wouldn't wear one as expensive as this anyway. I can't accept this.

Susan: What makes you think anyone was giving you a watch anyway?

Dc: But you …

Susan: If something is happening under the table here, I don't know what it is. I have learned a lot from my experience and one of the things is you don't just slip things to people.

Dc: Because it's not right.

Susan: No, because it doesn't work! You have to make it clear what you want in return. Just like in a retail kind of situation, you have to ASK for the SALE. With a bribe, you must be specific.

Dc: So this isn't a bribe because you haven't asked for anything?

Susan: Exactly.

Dc: And you're not going to ask for anything?

Susan: This whole process has left me more than a bit … hesitant.
I think before we put our name forward as a candidate for any major sporting event ever again, we would want to have a number of people … all across the country … saying that we'd be a good place for the games to happen. Thought leaders. Opinion leaders. Media people … that sort of thing would have to get started first. Almost spontaneously it would have to begin.

Dc: What's this? This is a fifty dollar bill!

Susan: It is?

Dc: You just pushed a fifty into my hand under the table!

Susan: You know, those fifties don't look like real money, do they!

Dc: You thought you could bribe me to say nice things about your town for fifty dollars?

Susan: I thought at least it would get you to be quiet about the traffic under the table!

Dc: No thanks. Susan G (not her real name) led an effort by an anonymous city to get the summer Olympics in an unidentified year. It failed.
And now I see why. It was ineptitude.

Susan: Oh? Well what was your hand doing under the table to begin with?

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