The London 2012 Olympic games are well underway. Since the epic opening ceremony, there's been a lot of chatter regarding how much it costs to host and produce the games. The budget for the London Olympics is estimated at $15 billion. That's a lot of money. Considering the economic struggles for many of the athletes in the games, in addition to the strain the games put on residents, it's arguable that the money could be better spent elsewhere. The goal of the Olympics has always been to promote tolerance and unity among a diverse group of nations, not about how many giant babies can fit in the Olympic stadium.
Nonetheless, it's hard to understand how expensive it is to produce something like the Olympics. To help, here's a list of 9 things that cost as much as the London 2012 Olympics.
Jamaica might be stacking up wins during the Olympics, but aside from pride, that's not doing much for the country. With a GDP of about $15 billion, the Olympics could pretty much own the country, or at least make a big donation to help out the struggling Caribbean nation.
2) 3 Presidential Elections
It's no secret that running for president, or any political office, can get really expensive really fast. In 2008 alone, over $5 billion in total was spent during election, and one can only imagine how much will be spent this year with wealthy Mitt Romney in the running.
3) 6 Rovers to Mars
Curiosity's landing on Mars has gotten lots of well-deserved attention recently. The operation cost NASA $2.6 billion and some people have been complaining that the endeavor cost too much, but the incredible images from the land rover Curiosity makes it all worth it.
4) 15 copies of the world's most expensive home
Nicknamed Antilla, the most expensive house in the world is located in Mumbai and is worth an estimated $1 billion. The house features six levels of parking, a health level, and even a ballroom. With 27 floors, I'm sure it could fit all the Olympians, which might cut down on costs if India ever decides to host the Olympics.
5) 60 Pieces of Priceless Art
History was made last year when the Royal Family of Qatar bought Paul Cezanne's The Card Player for $254 million, making it the most expensive art purchase ever. I'm sure many of the world's greatest athletes are into art as well, so maybe they wouldn't mind seeing some of the money used on the Olympics being used for artistic purposes instead.
6) 75 Private Islands
For a mere $20 million, the IOC could purchase Northern Two Cayes, Belize. London is a great city, but something tells me athletes and fans wouldn't mind spending their Olympics on a private island.
7) 5,769 Bugatti Veyron Supersports
Forget about medals, let's give cars to the winners. Who wouldn't want to drive away from their victory in the world's most expensive car?
8) 60,000 college tuitions at Ivy League schools
College is not cheap. Ask any recent graduate and they can probably tell you some story of woe regarding the cost of their college tuition and their student loans. That said, colleges serve as training ground for many Olympic athletes, many recruited to top schools like Princeton and Harvard, so why not help out those athletes who might have a few loans to pay off?
9) 300,000 gold bars
If you think all that money is spent on Olympic medals, your wrong. The gold medals given to Olympians are only worth $700 and they're actually 92.5% percent silver. Knowing that, I'm sure athletes that come in first wouldn't mind trading in their gold medals for gold bars.