Monopoly Games

I t is said that when Putin visited Sochi over the past few years and clouds happened to speckle the sky, exceptional measures were taken to accommodate him. As the presidential plane descended, military helicopters took flight. Their rotor blades spinning, the helicopters dispersed the clouds. In this way, Putin could obtain an unobstructed view of his creation along the coast of the Black Sea.

Back in the storage room, watching Putin speak a room away, eight hours into a day administered like Russia itself -- by fiat, without much planning and with no accountability or protest -- I finally saw what I should ask Putin: How will the Sochi Olympics truly reflect your view of the world?

But when I turned to go find Putin, security guards blocked the door. I was going nowhere. So I grabbed a marshmallow bar and watched the rest of the show.

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