A nation of wusses?

The Vikings will play the Eagles in Philadelphia tonight, to make up for the game that was postponed Sunday because of the blizzard that hit the East Coast.

Yesterday, you may have heard, Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell panicked over the panic in a way not seen since Sputnik.

“We’ve become a nation of wusses,” Rendell told Mike Missanelli of 97.5 The Fanatic on Monday. “The Chinese are kicking our butt in everything. If this was in China do you think the Chinese would have called off the game? People would have been marching down to the stadium, they would have walked and they would have been doing calculus on the way down.”

Rendell might be invoking a few issues having little to do with a football game, that sound personally familiar. I got thrown out of Cub Scouts when I was a kid because I refused to do some sort of activity outside involving two people on a broomstick. The den mother admonished me along similar lines, that kids in the Soviet Union were kicking our butt.

But let’s get back to China’s ability to spit at the snow.

Last January, it was reported, 300,000 people had to be assigned to clear Beijing of snow because the city didn’t have the ability to clear a record snowfall. It was the most snow the city had gotten since the 1950s. How much? Three inches. That’s 9 inches less than what Philadelphia got the other night. In China, it’d be difficult to enjoy a football game when you’ve been assigned a broom for the next three days, although one supposes you can do calculus while you’re sweeping the sidewalk to the stadium.

Oh, and all of the major airports were closed. And China closed schools because the temperature reached -18 celsius. That’s not quite -1 farenheit or the temperature at which Minnesotans consider putting on a sweater.

Of course, the criticism of the game’s cancellation came from Minnesota, too. That would never happen here, many suggested. But sometimes, we in Minnesota can get carried away with our weather hardiness.

After all, when’s the last time you chose not to use one of these?


Philadelphia doesn’t have a skyway system.

(Skyway photo by Kathlyn Stone, via Flickr.)

  • Bob Moffitt

    Someone should remind Gov. Rendell that we beat the Chinese in the snow at the Battle of Chosin Reservoir. But that was awhile ago…

  • Tom Kuhl

    Does Gov. Rendell remember Project Apollo? The U.S. is the only country to have put a man on the moon: Over 40 years ago.

    China’s technological and logistical capacity is nowhere near that of the U.S. If they were, they wouldn’t have mid-summer traffic jams lasting three days and toys covered in lead paint.

    Also note the difference between the people and the government. Frankly, the only reason most of the Chinese people would be digging out a stadium in China is because there would be no other choice. On more than one occasion the Chinese government has shot political dissidents and then charged their family for the bullet over fighting for rights (such as the right to call your own government “wusses”) that Gov. Rendell takes for granted.

    There are really only two things China is better at than the U.S. (1) they don’t ship jobs overseas for tax breaks (2) they don’t deregulate their financial industry to the point where other countries can own them; these are things done by U.S. politicians such as Gov. Rendell.

  • John P.

    “And China closed schools because the temperature reached -18 celsius.”

    Let’s not forget that the last time I knew for sure, most Chinese schools lacked heat.

    If that’s still true, the Chinese are definitely not “kicking our butt” in the climate control department.