Steve Redgrave writes in the Telegraph (which may be inaccessible to overseas readers unless you delete the Telegraph cookie):
The 29 gold medals – not to mention the dozens of silvers and bronzes – won by Team GB not only defined the most spectacular year of sport I can remember, but completely overhauled how we are perceived as a nation.
Really? Who is this ‘we’ I wonder? I perceived Britain as a regulatory statist nation circling the drain with a smug grin on its collective and in-need-of-a-punch-in-its-Steven Fry face before the Olympics… and the preposterous and expensive spectacle has just reinforced that view.
Indeed the much trumpeted ‘success’ of the games just tries to stuff the economic damage they caused down the memory hole. But hey, in the final self congratulatory event, the establishment got to praise that ‘envy of the world’ that so few other nations seem to envy enough to emulate, the NHS, so no… the Olympics just reinforced my less than flattering view of Britain rather than ‘completely overhauling’ it.