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World Cup 2010 / Sports

Discussion in 'General political debates' started by antitude420, Jul 6, 2010.

  1. antitude420

    antitude420Experienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    May 16, 2010
     
    I know I love me some good football and a couple of beers, from time to time. But the feeling of division and patriotism, always bugged me and still does. Also, sometimes is hard for me to enjoy it knowing the salaries of the guys kicking the ball are ridiculously high! :/

    I don't know whether to watch it or not, I like the game but what it does to people is sometimes disturbing...

    I was wondering what were your thoughts on this and on football or some other major sport in your country...
     

  2. punkmar77

    punkmar77Experienced Member Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    I am just the same antitude, I love futbol because I played it in the streets of Mexico as a kid, and as an adult I stopped 3 penalty shots in a prison championship game. But I can't stand the blatant commercialism and greed in organized FIFA bullshit. Also it breeds Nationalism and in an underhanded way racism.
     
  3. Anxiety69

    Anxiety69Experienced Member Uploader Experienced member Forum Member


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    I love a good baseball game, but i hate that they not only sing the national anthem before hand, but we also have to bear through god bless america during the 7th inning stretch... makes me wanna puke.
     
  4. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    Football sucks, it isnt a sport representative of the working class anymore, it is a bourgeois sport to make money. I have a few very good articles about it but only in french :(

    As for FIFA, anyone calling himself an anarchist should boycott this bullshit, FIFA is full of corruption... If you can find the documentary by Andrew Jennings about the FIFA world cup, WATCH IT, it is definatly worth it and prove how FIFA is full of corruption and money making....
     
  5. punkmar77

    punkmar77Experienced Member Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    That's arbitrary Ungov, futbol isn't bullshit when it is played by poor people in the streets of third world nations, and there are many views on this including full dissertations by Argentine anarquistas as to why it is precisely the most socialist practiced sport in the world. Sure it is also an organized bourgeois multinational corporate excuse for a sport, but that does not wrench it away from its origins as a working class sport.
     
  6. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    Yeah i didnt express myself correctly, i was talking about organized football sport..
     
  7. antitude420

    antitude420Experienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    I agree with you both, punkmar and ungov.

    Organized football is full of corruption. Football, in it's pure form, should be a way to unite people, even if it is a sport where two teams battle each other on the way to victory, it should be a healthy competition. A way for people to get together, have some fun. But, as everything in this world, once money came into the game, it just ruined the whole thing. It became about the cups and the money and "respect" the damn country and team earn with them. It became a company, which like all the other companys, has a product to sell. They spend millions of dollars building huge stadiums, encouraging people to spend 20, 30, 40 or, sometimes, even 50 bucks to see a damn game. It pays the players absurd quantities of money (and I have a big example of that in my country - Cristiano Ronaldo, just another dude who was born poor but forgot about his origins). It encourages nationalism and xenophobia. The referees are paid off, the players aren't there because of the unity and the game, they're there playing and doing there best for the money, not anything else, just the fucking money.

    It disgusts me...But, well, I'm not going to lie, I've been seeing every game of this World Cup. I don't know how I feel about that, even though I always try to be imparcial, even when Portugal played against Spain, I always said "well, may the best team win!". I refuse to get dragged down on this spiral of capitalist, neo-liberalist, nationalist bullshit.

    I support football...For the people! Not the money!

    (Well, I wrote a huge ass post at 5.40am...What the hell is wrong with me?! o_O )
     
  8. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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  9. butcher

    butcherExperienced Member Uploader Experienced member Forum Member


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  10. ungovernable

    ungovernableAutonome Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    woohoo, found one of the articles i was referring to, in english!


    (en) Southern-Africa, Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front (ZACF) statement on the 2010 Soccer World Cup: All in the Name of the Beautiful Gain (fr)
    Date Sat, 12 Jun 2010 11:53:59 +0300

    The 2010 Soccer World Cup must be exposed for the utter sham that it is. The ZACF strongly condemns the audacity and hypocrisy of the government in presenting the occasion as a âonce-in-a-lifetimeâ opportunity for the economic and social upliftment of those living in South Africa (and the rest of the continent). ---- What is glaringly clear is that the âopportunityâ is and continues to be that of a feeding-frenzy for global and domestic capital and the South African ruling elite. In fact, if anything, the event is more likely to have devastating consequences for South Africaâs poor and working class â a process that is already underway. ---- FIFA, as sole owner of the World Cup brand and its spin-off products, has a team of lawyers scouring the country for any unauthorised selling of these products and marketing of the brand.

    These products are seized and sellers are arrested despite the fact that most in South Africa purchase their products from the informal trading sector, as very few have R400 to dole out on team t-shirts and other gear. It has also has effectively gagged journalists with an accreditation clause that prevents media organisations from bringing FIFA into disrepute, clearly compromising freedom of press.

    In preparing to host the World Cup the government has spent close to R800 billion (R757 billion on infrastructure development and R30 billion on stadiums that will never be filled again), a massive slap in the face for those living in a country characterized by desperate poverty and close to 40% unemployment. Over the past five years the working poor have expressed their outrage and disappointment at the governmentâs failure to redress the massive social inequality in over 8,000 service delivery protests for basic services and housing countrywide. This pattern of spending is further evidence of the maintenance of the failed neoliberal capitalist model and its âtrickle downâ economics, which have done nothing but deepen inequality and poverty globally. Despite previous claims to the contrary, the government has recently admitted this by doing an about turn, and now pretends that the project was ânever intendedâ to be a profit making exercise [1].

    South Africa desperately needs large-scale public infrastructure, especially in the area of public transport which is in some cities, including Johannesburg, is almost entirely absent. The Gautrain, which was launched on Tuesday the 8th June (just in time for the big event) is probably the biggest irony here: in a country where the large majority rely on unsafe private mini-bus taxis to travel long distances on a daily basis, the Gautrain offers high speed, luxury transport for tourists and those travelling between Johannesburg and Pretoriaâ who can afford it if a single trip between the airport and Sandton will set you back a massive R100. The same picture reveals itself everywhere: the Airports company of South Africa (ACSA) has spent over R16 billion on upgrading the airports, the commercialised South African National Road Agency Ltd (SANRAL) has spent over R23 billion on a new network of toll roads â all of which will implement strict cost-recovery measures to recoup the billions spent, and most of which will be of little benefit to poor South Africans. All over the country municipalities have embarked on urban regeneration schemesâ accompanied by corresponding gentrification schemes, as the government attempts to hastily paper over the harsh South African reality. Over 15,000 homeless people and street children have been rounded up and dumped in shelters in Johannesburg alone, in Cape Town the municipality has evicted thousands of people from poor areas and squatter camps as part of the World Cup vanity project. The City of Cape Town (unsuccessfully) attempted to evict 10,000 Joe Slovo residents from their homes in order to hide them from the tourists travelling along the N2 highway, and elsewhere they are being removed to make space for stadiums, fan parks or train stations [2]. In Soweto, roads are being beautified along main tourist and FIFA routes, while adjacent schools sport broken windows and crumbling buildings.

    Although many South Africans remain unconvinced, others are inundated and swept along by the deluge of nationalist propaganda aimed at diverting attention from the circus that is the World Cup. Every Friday has been deemed âsoccer Fridayâ, in which the ânationâ is encouraged (and school children forced) to sport Bafana-Bafana t-shirts. Cars are kitted out in flags, people learn the âDiski-danceâ which is performed regularly at every tourist restaurant, and buy Zakumi mascot dolls. Anyone sceptical of the hype is denigrated unpatriotic, the prime example being when appeals were made to striking South African Transport and Allied Workers Union (SATAWU) workers to shelve their concerns âin the national interestâ [3]. In a context where close to a million jobs have been lost over the course of the past year, government celebrations that the world cup has created over 400 000 jobs are empty and insulting. The jobs that have been created in the run up have been mostly casual or âLimited Duration Contracts (LCDs)â, taken by workers that are not unionised and paid well below the minimum wage.

    Apart from the repression of unions, social movements have received similar hostility from the state, which has unofficially put a blanket ban on all protest for the duration of the event. In fact there is some evidence that this has been in place since as early as the 1st March. According to Jane Duncan:

    A snap survey conducted at the end of last week of other municipalities hosting World Cup matches revealed that a blanket ban on gatherings is in operation. According to the Rustenberg municipality, "gatherings are closed for the World Cup". The Mbombela municipality was told by the SAPS that they were not going to allow gatherings during the World Cup. The Cape Town City Council claimed that it continues to accept applications for marches, but indicated that it "may be a problem" during the World Cup period. According to the Nelson Mandela Bay and Ethekwini municipalities, the police will not allow gatherings over the World Cup period [4].

    Although it is clear that the constitution, often hailed for its âprogressivenessâ is far from the guarantor of freedom and equality that government claims it to be, this new form of repression is clearly in contradiction with the constitutional right to freedoms of expression and gathering. However, social movements in Johannesburg including the Anti-Privatisation Forum and several others have not given up so easily, having managed to get authorization for a protest march on the day of the opening with the help of the Freedom of Expression Institute. However, the march is being forced to be held three kilometres from the stadium where it will not attract the sort of media attention the government is worried about.

    Not only has the state been repressively severe on the poor and any anti-World Cup demonstration or activity, all within the guise of painting South Africa as a host flinging its arms open in invitation to those flocking to its upmarket hotels, bed-and-breakfasts and cocktail lounges, but it does so under the guidance of Sepp Blatter & Friendsâ legal criminal empire called FIFA (wonderfully referred to as THIEFA by the Durban Social Forum). Not only are they expected to benefit from a 2010 windfall of nearly â 1.2 billion, but have already gained over â 1 billion from media rights alone.

    The stadia, and areas around the stadia, which were handed over to FIFA for the duration of the tournament (âtax-free cocoonsâ literally creating FIFA-controlled and monitored areas exempt from normal taxation and other State laws), and all routes to and from the stadia have been forcibly cleared of anyone selling non-sanctioned FIFA products and those eking out an existence in squatter camps along airport roads. As such, people who would have banked on World Cup sales to boost their survival incomes are left out in the "trickle down" cold.

    FIFA, as sole owner of the World Cup brand and its spin-off products, also has a team of approximately 100 lawyers scouring the country for any unauthorised selling of these products and marketing of the brand. These products are seized and sellers are arrested despite the fact that most in South Africa and on the continent purchase their products from the informal trading sector, as very few have R400 to dole out on team t-shirts and other gear. It has also has effectively gagged journalists with an accreditation clause that prevents media organisations from bringing FIFA into disrepute, clearly compromising freedom of press [5].

    The major irony is that soccer was once truly the game of the working class. Viewing games live at stadia was cheap and easily accessible to people who chose to spend 90 minutes forgetting about the daily drudgery of their lives under the boot of the boss and the State. Today, professional football and the World Cup bring exorbitant profits to a small cabal of a global and domestic elite (with billions spent unnecessarily and in a time of a global capitalist crisis) who charge patrons thousands of rands, pounds, euros, etc. every season to watch disgustingly overpaid footballers fall and dive all over manicured pitches at the slightest tug and who squabble, via parasitic agents, over whether or not they are deserving of their huge salaries. A game, which in many respects maintains its aesthetic beauty, has lost its working-class soul and has been reduced to just another set of commodities to be exploited.

    Bakunin once said that âpeople go to church for the same reasons they go to a tavern: to stupefy themselves, to forget their misery, to imagine themselves, for a few minutes anyway, free and happyâ. Perhaps, amongst all the blindly nationalistic flag waving and vuvuzela-blowing, we can add sport to his equation and that it might seem easier to forget than to actively partake in combating injustice and inequality. There are many who do, though, and the working class and poor and their organisations are not as malleable to illusion as the government would want to believe. From temporary squatter camp constructions at the doors of the stadia, to mass protest and demonstrations, to countrywide strike action, unsanctioned or not, despite the taunts and jeers and the labels of being âunpatrioticâ, or blanket bans on freedom of speech, we will defiantly make our voices heard to expose the terrible inequalities characterising our society and the global games played at the expense of the lives of those upon whom empires are built and will be, ultimately, destroyed.
    Down with the World Cup!
    Phansi state repression and divisive nationalism!
    Phambili the people's struggle against exploitation and profiteering!
    This statement was issued by the Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front

    For more information and other articles of critique see:

    http://www.ukzn.ac.za/ccs/default.asp?2,40,5,2037
    http://antieviction.org.za/
    http://www.abahlali.org/

    For other articles and statements on the current climate of struggle and repression in South Africa see:

    * Landless militants and shack-dwellers under attack in Soweto
    * Let Us Fight The Government, Not Each Other
    * The poor clashing with the poor over electricity in Soweto
    * Police Attack the Landless Peopleâs Movement in eTwatwa, Ekurhuleni: One Person is Dead and another Seriously Injured
    * The Homes of Two Landless People's Movement Leaders Burnt as Police Look On
    * The Attack on the Landless Peopleâs Movement Continues

    Notes:

    1. See Star Business Report, Monday 7th June, 2010
    2. http://antieviction.org.za/2010/03/25/t ... ks-for-us/
    3. http://www.politicsweb.co.za/politicswe ... &sn=Detail
    4. For article see http://www.sacsis.org.za/site/article/489.1
    5. http://www.sportsjournalists.co.uk/blog/?p=2336

    Related Link: http://www.zabalaza.net
     
  11. Vegetarian Barbarian

    Vegetarian BarbarianExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    Did anyone see how fucking ESPN abbreviated Nigeria versus Germany? What a bunch of morons...

    Again, fuck anything like the world cup... stanley cup, super bowl, fucking... PGA tours... fuck them ALL. :ecouteurs:
     
  12. butcher

    butcherExperienced Member Uploader Experienced member Forum Member


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    nope, how did they abbreviate them?
     
  13. antitude420

    antitude420Experienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    I don't have ESPN in my country but I'm willing to bet that they abbreviated Nigeria as 'Niger' or 'Nigers'. Right? :/

    Not sure about Germany, though...
     
  14. punkmar77

    punkmar77Experienced Member Staff Member Uploader Admin Team Experienced member


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    Nig Vs Ger
     
  15. butcher

    butcherExperienced Member Uploader Experienced member Forum Member


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    oh dear...
    to think nobody in such a big business as ESPN picked that one up is pretty funny though.
     
  16. Protspecd

    ProtspecdExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    I don't mind sports but I hate how much money is in it. Players getting offered millions to switch teams etc, such a ridiculous amount for something so unnecessary. Some sports can be pretty entertaining to watch or play in but there is no need for money to be involved (especially with the sum of money floating around in sport).
     
  17. AtomicKhaos

    AtomicKhaosExperienced Member Experienced member Forum Member


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    People want to be paid for their "skills." It's really sickening, how something such as hobbies are turned into "professional sports." Just someone kicking around a ball, or getting hit a shit ton, or throwing a ball, etc, being paid for it. It has gone into more than just FIFA, NFL, MLB, NHL, NBA, but Skateboarding, Bowling, everything almost. I think it is safe to say that boredom is one of the roots of all this. And people get to be lazy after they just worked their ass off, and spend a shit ton of money watching these fugly assholes abuse themselves physically.

    What a world, What a world...
     
  18. Jake

    JakeMember Forum Member


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    Football is sweet, patriotism is shit
     
  19. Jake

    JakeMember Forum Member


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    Jun 9, 2010
     
    Football is sweet, patriotism is shit
     
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