Yes, I agree that this statement is over the top, but at present, I have had it with sports. Whenever we hear about any sport, we are likely to hear doping, corruption or treason. When was the last time you watched your favourite sport and one of these three elements were not in play? Even if this is the case, when you Google your sport with the keywords ‘crime’, ‘corruption’ or ‘investigation’ you will see a list of events that is tainting your favourite sport.
I am originally Dutch, which means that cycling, skating and Soccer make the list for most Dutch people. I (being a statistical outlier in all this) do not really care about those three. If I am at such an event I will enjoy watching it, but I usually do not really bother watching it on TV, unless it is a special event (like a semi-final or final for a world cup or something like that).
So, when I saw on TV that Qatar had won the World Cup host for 2022, I was just happy for Qatar. I was happy, because a thoroughly European sport would go to the Middle East, hopefully inspiring more people and more nations to take up the sport, which is always a good thing. I also considered that the location would show the ‘smaller’ nations had an opportunity to host the ‘big’ boys in soccer and show them that they too can wield the torch of hosting pride. I had no negative thoughts at all. Although I realised that this was a very warm place, it would be nice for other teams like Qatar, Cameroon and Mexico get to play with home field weather advantage, which was pretty much it for me.
So when I got the news this morning that another corruption scandal had hit FIFA, I pretty much lost it on the spot. I remember the Final games of the 1978 world cup. It was NOT the final that was fixed; it was the match before that. What I still consider today as a match-fixed battle between Argentina and Peru, where the hosts needed to win by four goals to reach the final when they slaughtered Peru with a score of 6-0. I saw how Argentina passed on the left, passed on the right and the Peruvian team played frozen, like zombies in a Haitian Dance festival. In my personal view Argentina made it to the finals on false grounds. Yes, the finals were in my view honestly won, but they did not get there honestly and as such the Dutch were robbed of their final victory.
So when I see sports and corruption I tend to go slightly mad. The allegations against Qatar can best be found at http://www.theguardian.com/football/blog/2013/oct/03/world-cup-2022-fifa-qatar.
In my view the hosting game needs to get changed. I am so sick of these corruption events. In my view the following needs to happen. When a person is found guilty of corruption, those nations, in this case Brazil, Paraguay and Cameroon are barred from getting officials into FIFA and the IOC (International Olympic Committee) for a term no less than 16 years, furthermore, they cannot become a host nation for that same amount of time. For the first upcoming World Cup, those three nations are then prevented from entering. There is of course a small chance that their families will slightly suffer when Soccer fans go a little nuts at that point, but who gives a fuck? (Pretty please pardon my ‘French’ here.)
I have seen too much corruption and treason and it had too often got settled with a ‘reprimand’. These two transgressions are now often seen as legalised gambling. You have no risk, you get money and perhaps a fee and a slap on the wrists if you get caught. It would be nice to see these people run for their lives. I foresee that sport corruption could take a steep dive towards a 0% sport crime rate, which is good for sports overall.
To be quite honest, until the article in the Guardian, I was willing to ignore the stories. In my personal view, the Telegraph tends to be a less then academic levelled source of information (they usually lay it on a little too thick). I even contemplated the option that all this were false allegations through media giants as the timing and temperatures might result in a shift in dates to play, which could result in a loss of advertisement coinage no less than 1 Billion Euro on a global scale, not to mention the merchandising that might make a sizzler, all that because the Qatarian time zone could shift the games to less civil times for many of the European TV viewers.
Yet the Guardian shows another story. The one passage I do have a slight problem with is “Mohamed bin Hammam, from Qatar, at the time the challenger to Blatter’s presidency, was found by the court of arbitration for sport last year to ‘more likely than not’ have brought cash to two meetings in May 2011 which was then handed to FIFA delegates”
The more likely than not is a bit of an issue for me. It is more likely than not that I do not have the purest of thoughts when I see Olivia Wilde (or Laura Vandervoort, Leslie Bibb, Natasha McElhone or Olivia Munn for that matter). That is a sentence that holds ground (not grammatically). In regards to funds it does not really hold any ground (unless there is a better quality of tangible evidence).
I desire a woman? (Yes and it is not illegal!), I desire money? (To some extent, a definite yes if it gives me access to desire group number one and again it is not illegal), Will I be corrupt for it? Very less likely, however I might be willing to falsify my medical records if it gets me access to my initial group one. The last would actually be illegal and it is covered in Criminal Law, so I am definitely not willing to pursue that avenue.
Why the previous rant? It is about evidence and ‘more likely than not‘, just does not cut it in my book when it comes to these levels of corruption. Even though it is a Civil Court requirement and has been in UK courts since Miller v. Minister of Pensions  2 All ER 372, which was stated by Lord Denning, former Lord Justice of Appeal and former member of the House of Lords and Master of the Rolls as “more probable than not“, yet when we regard the world as it is today, more probable then not is in my personal view no longer a valid reasoning when it comes to larger amounts of money. It is too easy to frame a person; in the electronic age it is too likely to be falsely processed and when you consider the Bitcoin issue of February 2014, was it stolen or actually lost? More likely than not is very probable to imply involved parties in acts of fraud and theft and less likely that a data files were corrupted and through this misplaced into nothingness.
So there we have it! Is there guilt? I am not sure whether this can be easily proven. If certain people are missing out on a billion in revenue and securing it would require blaming three people of taking a few million, is framing three people so far-fetched? I personally think that this is not the case, or stated under the legal premise ‘it is more likely than not that three people were falsely set in an illegal light so that several unnamed persons could walk away with many hundreds of millions of Euros‘. This is a lot easier to sell in many civil courts.
So which scenario is correct?
I honestly do not know, but it still bothers me that no matter what the truth ends up being, and in hindsight when we look at FIFA, the IOC as well as groups that offer global events had to be revamped in several ways for well over two decades. Consider the ‘old boys’ brigade as it was in the UK between WW1 and WW2. In today’s global setting of fast paced events, where this approach just does not cut it.