In the overall medal standings at the Beijing 2008 Olympics, Old Europe has beaten the crap out of both China and the US – winning almost twice as much gold as the United States, and more than double the amount of medals of China. Despite the heated debate about exactly this subject, no one seems to notice.
Old Europe, an informal name for the European Union before its recent enlargements, managed to obtain 64 gold medals, 68 silver medals and 70 bronze medals – a total of 202 medals, solidly claiming the first place in the overall medal standings.
The 12 countries involved (Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Ireland, Great Britain, Denmark, Greece, Portugal and Spain) have a total population of 366 million people, somewhat more than the United States, but far less than China.
So it seems Europe came out on top in this Olympics. But please, continue to ignore the elephant in the room. It’s not as if we have the largest economy in the world, or six times the fire power of China.