Australian Sport: Fair Go for Cheats, Dopers and Gangsters

Let’s be clear about one thing. Australia is no worse than other nations when it comes to cheating and corruption in the sporting arena. It becomes a story only in the fact that Australians have long been in denial about such matters. They have been happy to engage in the collective myth of ‘fair play for all’ on and off the sporting field. But like the entire modern Australian narrative, it is nothing but a well-constructed myth, airbrushing out all the nasty bits and creating instead a picture of Aussie mateship, down to earth honesty, no pretentious bullshit, and a fair go for all. Nothing could be further from the truth.

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Panorama: Fifa – The Final Whistle

There is little surprise to learn that no less than a third of the FIFA executive have had substantial allegations of corruption made against them.  It is alleged by Lord Triesman, The Times and the BBC that Qatar won their 2022 World Cup bid by employing some FIFA fixers to organise the appropriate backhanders, worth many millions. No doubt similar ‘gifts’ and ‘promises’ were made by the Russian oligarchs to ensure Russia won the 2018 bid. So where does that leave countries like Britain, the US and the other developed nations? Squeaky clean? Not a bit of it.

 

 Why is it that the poorer, developing nations and their representatives are more prone to be caught taking back-handers than their more wealthy European and US counterparts? The answer is screamingly obvious. The world’s powerful economies tend to carry out their ‘persuasion’ by nothing so crude as a back room transaction. No, their modus operandi is far more subtle but no less corrupt for all that. Without uttering a word, the handful of powerful nations, commonly known as the G8 club, implicitly let it be known that if they were to win the bid, their transnational corporations will be available for business. If for example the World Cup or the Olympic Games heads to the USA, nothing illegal is explicitly said but everything is implied.

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Cricket Reflects Life.

Cricket, like sport generally, is but a reflection of life itself. Nothing particularly profound or original in that. Everything we see in sport, be it the highly professional, highly commercialised, highly globalised version, or the stuff at the other end of the spectrum, the local school or club match with nothing but pride and a cheap shiny trophy at stake, reflects what’s all around us. How could it be otherwise? Nothing exists in a vacuum and sport is no exception.  

 

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Cheating Neanderthals

In the space of just a couple of weeks three articles appeared in the press devoted entirely to the subject of cheating. I should add as a point of clarification, that we are talking both sport and the company boardrooms; the inner citadels of the banking world and the committee rooms of parliament. In short, humans seem to be genetically programmed to lie and cheat if it means we can get one step ahead of our competitors.

Last Updated ( Tuesday, 03 November 2009 09:52 )

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Cloud of Suspicion, The Guardian, 25/07/09, Anna Kessel

We all like fairytales. They brighten up the all too often grim business of life. 

Last Updated ( Friday, 18 September 2009 11:45 )

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