China began construction of a highway yesterday leading to the northern base camp to Mt. Everest in preparations for the 2008 Olympics. They want to host the Olympic Torch at Everest en route to the five continent torch relay. This smart display of hubris comes at a Chinese stated cost of just under 20 million USD.

I wonder, with a cost of constructing the 108 kilometer path for the torch-bearers much less than the cost of constructing the top floors of the world's tallest skyscrapers, are the Chinese not real smart at making a global statement?

Irrespective of the stated cost being Chinese and irrespective of the fact that it is a smart statement of intent, isn't hubris all about profound gestures of ambition? I find it difficult to assume that China with a continuous history of conquests and occupation of foreign lands is trying to take Olympian harmony and brotherhood alone to the highest heights.


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