Monday, 28 May 2012

Olympic Fever

So the Olympic flame trundles on through the country. Yesterday it passed through my home town, here in West Wales.It seems the country has gone mad. About 7,000 or so gathered to watch it pass, (from all accounts in a matter of minutes) quite a lot for a small town.For some people the recession does not seem to be happening, as this government slashes benefits, attacks the poor!
Sure there are tales of courage and fortitude, but overall I just don't get it. Crowds gather in excitement and delight wherever the torch appears, following the smell of spin and propoganda. It has an air of craziness about it, people whooping, people crying. Celebratng a torch that is on its way to London, where it will be used again as a symbol at the Olympics great spectacle of wealth.
I came home to my garden before the flame actually arrived ( heard the cries, of joy and hysteria) but what I saw  in the town was blatant publicising for the Olympics main sponsors - Coke a Cola, B.T, Samsung and Lloyds/T.S. B Plc, McDonalds, the epitomy of junk and greedy captitalistic endeavor, their only common dominator is their thirst for profit. Corporate advertising latched on to a cavalcade of vehicles.
And coke, not really a healthy drink that I would associate with sport. As for the participation of Dow Chemicals..... the mind simply boggles, have people simply  forgotten the Bhopal disaster that killed 15,000 people. And the people whoop and the people cheer.
The Olympics are going to  cost an estimated £11billion - more than the Tory governments latest cut to the welfare budget. So lets celebrate our austerity.... hip hip hooray.
The relay is supposed to 'promote peace and make the world a better place' according to the International Olympic Committe President Jacques Rogge - but at such enormous cost. A true spirit of international co-operation would have seen us bailing out the Greeks, the originators of the Olympics, letting them host the games permanently and giving them our £15 billion.
And who invented the modern torch relay - the bloody Nazis.... Torches and flames had a strong link to Nazi ideology, they were used as a key part in Leni Reifenstahl's Nazi propoganda documentary Olympia.
They used the 1936 Olympics and the torch relay as a way of spreading their racist message of hate.

Today I feel this event is being used as a mass distractive action, to mask over the current problems we have in our country. I do not belittle peoples happiness, but think that it's all a bit of a con. At least some people will make something out of the games, by selling their torches on, with some perhaps being given back to charity.
In my garden it felt like I was living on another planet, as I heard the crowds roar, down the road from me. We have been experiencing some exceptionally good weather. But as the mass delusion rolls on I remain, deeply cynical. Will the flag waving, clapping and shedding a few tears of national pride continue,  yes, many international groups are eagerly anticipating the event, but many people in London themselves are searching for ways to avoid the Olympics entirely, perhaps this hopeful distraction give us some kind of illusion that we can beat this austerity...... and its the Jubilee coming up soon too. No I'm not buying it, I simply don't believe the hype. But at least the Sun is shining.

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