Thursday, 10 November 2011

The Money and the Power

As a description, Terry Wogan’s auction of things money can’t buy, is a bit off the mark, after all money is buying these things and nothing else. I guess you could argue that money doesn’t buy them, only extreme wealth can. Who else, especially in our current economic climate, could afford to spend several thousand pounds on something as spurious as being in possession of the Barclay’s Premier League Trophy for a day?

Even more annoying is Terry’s simpering tones about how wonderfully generous these people are. No they’re not. They’re giving a tiny percentage of their wealth in order to both have their names read out on the radio and get a prize at the end. Far more generous are the ones you never hear about who either donate a small amount (but greater percentage of their wealth) or who donate their own time to good causes.

And why can’t they do this thing behind closed doors with a collection of the super-rich, whose ego’s and competitiveness in such a close environment (plus plenty of drink) might push the final sums up even higher? Why play it on national radio? Well, it’s simple. It’s to make us feel some sort of gratitude to these oligarch’s and multimillionaires, to continue the myth that we are better off with them in charge, that they are kind and generous and benevolent.

It would be much fairer if they asked people to donate a nominal amount, say £5 or £10 (but you could donate more), in order to have a ticket in the draw for all of these things. At least it would give everyone a fair chance and they could conceivably raise more money if enough people donated. But no, the BBC want to continue the myth the rich are wonderful. Well, I for one have always felt a little nauseous when I hear the adverts, and for the sanity of my own wireless, I will not be tuning in.

The other thing that has caught my attention this week is the blatant power politics being played by the FA. Obviously still miffed that FIFA didn’t play fair over the World Cup allocations (and let’s face it they probably didn’t – but get over it!) and perhaps also that England were rubbish in the last world cup, they have sniffed a weakness within the organisation.

If it’s within FIFA’s rules that political and religious symbols should not be worn on football shirts, then denying the England team the chance to parade poppies should be the final say. But FIFA aren’t popular at the moment, the FA know this and so wanted to flex their muscles a bit, even going to the lengths of getting a future King to write a letter.

I have respect for the Royal British Legion, and for people who have died in wars (and don’t get me started on politicians who’ll wear a poppy, say how terrible war is and then three hours later discuss who we should attack next), however I really don’t see what difference it makes whether the England football team wears a poppy or not. If they were playing on Rememberance day or Rememberance Sunday then I could understand it a little, but they are not. It’s a Saturday in the same week as Rememberance and that is all. It would be a far greater gesture by the FA if they got their team of selfish, millionaire, overgrown schoolboys to make them speak out against war, than to make them wear pieces of red and green paper on their lapels.

1 comment:

  1. This is what the Royal Family are for!