As I write this; (Update: before I got Bell's Palsy hence the lack of blog posts and a grumpy and depressed attitude), the United States just lost a bid to host the 2022 FIFA World Cup. Why did we lose? Because we, (according to Slate magazine), would not pay the alleged bribe money to the FIFA execs. Qatar won the bid instead with an imaginary stadium rendering:
The American bid featured more potential revenue, more media exposure, and vastly more feasible planning than its Qatari counterpart. The infrastructure to host the tournament is already in place here, while Qatar will be starting from closer to scratch. But FIFA is both legendarily corrupt—in October, two members of the executive committee were suspended when the Sunday Times caught them offering to sell their votes, and they're just the tip of the iceberg—and desperately in love with the idea of "legacy." Its eyes light up for opaque governments, bizarre legal exemptions, huge construction projects, and regions that have never staged a major international soccer spectacle. The United States offered none of those things, while Qatar, like Russia and South Africa, offers them all.
What about an Olympics - we will ever try an host an Olympic Games? This is what Mr. Scott Blackburn had to say at the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics:
"... The (IOC) sent us a message, loud and clear, that they don't want the Games to be in the United States" and that potential cities in the United States cannot afford Olympic bids just to be spurned like New York and Chicago were in the 2012 and 2016 races respectively. ..."
Anytime a major construction project is begun in an emerging country that includes millions or billions-of-dollars, shoveling money into a project of that magnitude is like shoveling "fleas" across a barn yard floor. Notice how every Olympic project has cost over runs; even the bidding process as well? Where do you think the money is going?
Consider Brazil for the 2012 Olympics: Do they have an airline infrastructure that can handle the visitors? Not yet. Do they have security within their own "ghettos" or favellas that would ensure the safety of visiting travelers? Not yet. Is their current economy stable? NO it is not - They are currently offering 10% interest rates to attract investment since inflation is starting to get out of hand.
So why were they picked? Why? They have no stadium that can house 65,000 seats, not that many airports, nor do they have security. Los Angeles on the other hand has it all: Three airports within a 1/2-hour of each other and every venue needed yet an emerging country was picked.
The IOC has it's own issues with corruption as well and it was the United States organization that bribed them but United States law enforcement that uncovered it as well. From the BBC Sports blog:
So it is fair to say that, when it comes to corruption, the IOC does not have a track record of which its members can be proud. Salt Lake City won the right to host the 2002 Winter Olympics by offering scholarships to the children of IOC members, land in Utah and other lavish gifts. It is hard to hold any discussion about corruption in sport without referring back to a scandal that could have brought down the Olympic movement.[Link]
Personally, I am not convinced they have changed for why would they have too? Why does the IOC and FIFA pick countries that have yet to prove themselves with adequate infrastructure and security? Why do they take $2-billion chances; (the funding NBC gave them), on imaginary stadium renderings and the promise of a safer political culture?
But I am just a blogger, right? What do I know? Well, the Swiss don't trust them either - From the Swiss news agency ATS:
Switzerland will look into the activities of international sports organizations based in the country, including the football associations FIFA, UEFA and the International Olympic Committee (IOC), the Swiss news agency ATS said on Tuesday.
The country has decided to hold an investigation amid recent bribery scandals, the Swiss Federal Council said adding that it is looking for the eradication of corruption and bribery on all levels.[Link]
It's time the United States looks inward and realized we are nothing but a resource to these greedy people and maybe it is time to create our own sports movements from the NBA, to Skateboarding, Snowboarding, Surfing and all the other sports we invented? Instead of handling out gold medals, we hand out real gold.
Maybe it is time to embrace the X-Games as our own sports movement?
The artwork above is my wallpaper on my computer at work. I did the art and consider it a gift if you would like to use it on your computer, a blog post or any editorial. However, You must credit my name with any usage or I will hunt you down with a "gun" and a "spear" if you don't.