Mitch Perry Report 2.24.14 - Putin's Olympic glories lost in Ukraine situation

Well, the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics are history, and not a moment too soon for Russian President Vladimir Putin, who can now get back to figuring out whether or not he wants to send tanks into neighboring Ukraine, after his ally - President Vicktor Yanukovych - was ousted over the weekend by a Western-backed opposition movement.

To a certain extent, the events in Ukraine overshadow whatever "bounce" Mother Russia will get from hosting these games, which, frankly, should never have been placed in Sochi.

Or do you think that having temperatures in the 60s nearly every day is the ideal climate for the Winter Games? It's not, Forget about the issues with how Putin runs his country. But hey, there wasn't any terrorism at these games, nor any heavy-handed arrests of activists who spoke out against Russia's controversial gay 'propaganda' laws. Then again, there weren't really any protests at all.

Of course, you can't keep a good authoritarian regime down. Two members of the Russian punk band Pussy Riot were beaten and briefly detained last week in central Sochi, after apparently being considered suspects in a theft at their hotel, and then released.

As for the Games themselves, I've got to be honest with you. I didn't watch any of it. I wanted to see the U.S. play Canada Russia in hockey that early Saturday morning nine days ago, but because of work commitments I couldn't enjoy Mike Emrick's great play-by-play of that exciting game (I do dig Olympic hockey vs. the NHL type, which revels in watching guys pummel each other). But I applaud all of the athletes from around the world who worked to get to Sochi and compete at the highest level of their sports, which these days includes a lot of those "X Games"-type sports.

Back to Putin. The man spent $51 billion to get his country prepared to host the Games. Considering the economic situation in Russia, that's just malfeasance writ large. They did win the most medals, however — for whatever that's worth.

But in the game of geopolitics, Putin just lost big. Currently Moscow has placed on hold its $15 billion assistance package for Kiev, which led to so much of the uprising in recent months. And now President Yanukovych is considered a wanted man, with an arrest warrant being placed on him today ...

In news from this weekend - Yours truly was part of the spectacle that was Charlie Crist's visit to Haslam's book store in St. Petersburg, where the Democratic gubernatorial candidate was signing copies of his new tome, The Party's Over. Supporters and critics of the once and possibly future governor were in attendance.

Meanwhile, with the deadline to enroll in the Affordable Care Act approaching at the conclusion of next month, officials with Doctors For America made a pit-stop in Tampa on Saturday.

The National Governors Association is holding their annual meeting in Washington D.C. this week. That means more than a few of them with potential presidential aspirations are being asked about their futures this week, including Maryland's Martin O'Malley.

And if you didn't get the chance, please check out our story on attorney John Morgan, the Democratic party's uber financial donor and now the leading voice for medical marijuana in Florida.

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