Tuesday, November 30, 2010

World Cup Debacle - Win Win Win


Is this what we pay our taxes for?

Let's agree one point straight away - bringing the 2018 World Cup to England would cost taxpayers a packet.

How much?

Frankly we have no idea. Just like with 2012 Olympics, nobody seems to have worked out anything as mundane as precise costings. All we can glean is:
"The cost of staging the tournament between now and 2018 is being put at just under £1 billion. The Government has already signed guarantees worth £300 million while the 12 host cities have guaranteed funding of £400 million. The bid itself has cost £15.5 million to finance. Manchester is one of the host cities with two of the chosen stadia. A recent report by its city council suggested the cost to local taxpayers would be up to £30 million."
£1bn, huh? And does anyone believe that?

Quite. We can all remember how the projected cost of the Olympics quadrupled - yes, quadrupled - once the bid had been won. All of it to be extracted from us taxpayers.

Yes, the England bid has just been rated as being likely to generate more revenue that many of the competing bids, but what we need to ask is who gets those revenues? Sure, Fifa will take a big slug, tax free, so they'll be well pleased. But how much will we schmuck British taxpayers get? I think we know the answer.

Tyler has no problem with us hosting the World Cup (he will tune out the inevitable national humiliation). But he does have a huge problem with being forced to pay for it.

Which is why he is absolutely delighted with the late intervention of our public service broadcaster. Panorama's allegations of Fifa executive committee members taking bribes has pissed off Fifa, and almost certainly stymied our bid.

Brilliant.

In fact it's win, win, win.

First, we win because we save ourselves a pile of cash (not to mention avoiding having our noses rubbed in a pile of national humiliation right here on our own doorstep).

Second, we win because we remind everyone of the corruption endemic in all of these big international bureaucracies (eg the UN). Putting big western money into the hands of people with third world fiduciary standards is asking for trouble.

And third, we win because everyone will blame the BBC. Our self-styled public service broadcaster has just denied the public the service of the greatest show on earth.

Delicious.

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