Expatriate Owl

A politically-incorrect perspective that does not necessarily tow the party line, on various matters including but not limited to taxation, academia, government and religion.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

The Real Olympic Medal Count

Amidst this Olympics mania, one of the many, many things that has been bothering me is the way the news media posts the medal counts. They simply count the total number of medals, without regard to whether they are gold, silver or bronze.

And so, as of 10:30 PM EDT, the United States leads with 55 medals, followed by China with 47, and Australia with 46, followed by France (22), Russia (21), South Korea (20) and Germany (19).

But of the USA's 55 medals, 16 are gold, 17 are silver and 22 are bronze; while China's 47 medals include 27 gold, 13 silver and 7 bronze.

None of the news media medal tallies seem to take into account the fact that a gold medal is better than a silver medal, which is better than a bronze one!

Back when I was in high school and junior high, the track meets in which I participated implicitly recognized the differences between a first place finish and a second place finish and a third place finish. Team points were awarded as follows:

1st place: 5 points.
2nd place: 3 points.
3rd place: 1 point.

Using the spreadsheet program and the copy & paste functions, I have re-ranked the Olympic medal counts using the 5-3-1 point system.

The top 7 teams, according to that system, are:

1. China (181 points).
2. USA (153 points).
3. Australia (70 points).
4. South Korea (66 points).
5. Germany (65 points).
6. Russia (57 points).
7. Japan (55 points).

Und so weiter …

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