Monday, 4 January 2010

Oh so rotten

Football as we know it has been dying for some time. This is further proof.

Basically, Portsmouth FC has debts "estimated" at around £60 million. Quite whether this figure is accurate, I can't say, especially if it includes a possible £28 million to previous owner but one.

However, included in the creditors will be a large number of small business. However, within football, other football clubs get preferred creditor status. Consequently, the whole bloated mess can carry on whilst others can go to the wall. Portsmouth's television money will be diverted to other football clubs rather than the businesses that really need it.

Further proof of the obscene nature of being a football creditor can be found in the galling site of a relatively healthy Leeds United defeating Man United on Sunday. The chairman, Ken Bates, took the club into administration and bought it straight back off the administrators. This magically wiped out millions of pounds in debt. I would write something further here but why should I when David Conn of The Guardian expresses it so much better:

Leeds owed HM Revenue and Customs £7m, West Yorkshire ambulance service £8,997, St John Ambulance £165, and Bates's backers' first offer, accepted by the administrator, KPMG, was to pay those creditors 1p in the pound. The former players still owed money from Peter Ridsdale's dream time all had to be paid in full, including, for example, Danny Mills, owed £217,000 on a contract which had ended three years earlier.
Non-football creditors got 1p in the pound. Football creditors were paid in full.

Football is once again confused by it's own sense of self-importance. It pains me to say it but it's probably time one of these clubs went out of business altogether. There's an outside chance that the others might start to sit up and take notice. The pathetic ego driven desire to have the best league with the most expensive well paid players is driving the game into the dirt.

Let it go. Let the players go abroad if they want, if someone else can pay them similar amounts of money. Anyway, it's about time clubs stopped buying and started coaching.

The wit and wisdom of... (number 1)

Ray Winstone

"I'm a bit of a binge drinker – once I'm on it, I'm on it".

'They (drugs) are the biggest problem in the world today, and one of the reasons the troops are in Afghanistan. There are countries paying off national deficits over them and we've got kids dying every day thanks to drugs".

It's just a thought, but the man who says that drugs are the world's number one problem but also seems to revel in being a binge drinker, is a steaming hypocrite.

Politically he's slightly out about Afghanistan. He has probably forgotten that the Bush administration paid the Taliban over $40 million in 2001 for suppressing the drugs trade. Actually, what he says makes next to no sense. Perhaps he was a little addled when he said it.

When someone bleats about deaths caused by drugs but glamorises drinking, he is a buffoon. In 2007 there were 8,724 alcohol-related deaths in the UK. Perhaps we should be invading the vinyards of France.

And this was after a wonderful piece of populist nonsense in Psychologies in which he described himself as a rebel and followed it up with:

I don’t take any shit, especially from politicians. I’m sick to death of these so-called intellectuals running my life, taking money off me, and being taxed on top of tax. I don’t mind Boris Johnson. He’s off the wall, but I prefer him to that other gangster, Livingstone. He’s a complete liar. A wrong ‘un.
Now, I'm not saying that there's no such thing as a conservative rebel, nor am I suggesting that Ken Livingstone was the nearest thing to a saint, but the language he uses is so obviously short-sighted. It's "man of the people" nonsense. It's sounds plausible but doesn't hold up to scrutiny.

Ahh, celebrity, how we listen to you views and take them at face value. Ahh, celebrity, how we love it when you project your personality.

But, to start with, you say you don't take any shit and then complain that they are shitting on you through the medium of taxation. And why is there this insistence on using intellectuals as a pejorative term? All this macho nonsense. All this snap judgment of politics is exactly what the problem is. It's this kind of populist idiocy that means that any decision made by the so-called intellectuals is based on how it plays with the country rather than whether it's a good decision.

Short-termism is the new black.