Kevin Myers: The 2012 Olympics will be the final calamitous testament to the great obsessions of Tony Blair
There isn't a single person in Ireland -- and I am, most passionately in the general throng -- who doesn't want Fionnuala Britton to win a medal in the London Olympics. Yet, surely, we must all be aware of the con that is going on; there are so many events in the Olympics, that virtually every country gets a medal.
And so while Lithuania exults over its silver in ferret-wrestling, and Ugandastan rejoices at its gold in toenail-filing, no one calls a halt to this madness.
The 2012 London Games are now a hajj for terrorists, and its organisation is accordingly based on military logistics: a sort of Falklands War, in which the Task Force stays in Greenwich. I was going to say, the Falklands without the penguins, but in his endless attempts to win the headlines, I fully expect that gurning jackanapes Boris Johnson -- a Phony Tony with an alderman's chain: truly a Blair-mayor -- to announce a penguin pole-vault.
Whatever way they turn out, the 2012 games will serve as the final calamitous testament to the monomaniacal obsessions of Tony Blair. His government told all the necessary falsehoods to ensure that it got the Olympics for London.
The rules about expenses were bent: the security costs were hugely understated, as was the state-assistance to the games infrastructure. For once, the French were bamboozled by the Blair flair with facts and fiction; now you see it, now you don't, while the Blair teeth flashed, and his eyes glinted, and he played the usual three-card trick on whomever sat down at the baize table with him.
A few lies to have a war in Iraq? No problem. Sacrifice the SDLP to placate the IRA? Certainly. Ruin constitutional unionism for the sake of Paisleyite bigotry? Absolutely. Spend hundreds of millions on a gargantuan Bloody Sunday Enquiry? Of course. Destroy the National Health Service with meaningless targets and a landslide of money? My pleasure.
Blair's career was largely about penis-measuring. Indeed, when the conduct of human affairs is at its worst, what you hear is the tumescent surge of testosterone.
Bidding for the Olympics usually provides an example of this. The games long ago departed from the realm of athletics, into a demented cauldron of hubris and super-ego. They embody the spirit of Corinth much as the Court of Idi Amin personified vegetarianism, sexual equality and brotherly love. And quadrennially, they get worse, excesses that always exceed the excessive excesses of the previous excesses. No one can cry halt, it seems; each country yearns for its medal in tapioca-throwing.
How apposite that the Olympics should arrive in the East End of London, which during Blair's time as prime minister became a sort of Bengalistan. How many illegals were allowed to enter Britain while he was at Number 10: three million? In their ranks were large numbers of sworn enemies of the country that freely admitted them. At least the Trojans had to be duped into drawing the Greek horse through Troy's walls: no such ruses were necessary for Blair. Grinning throughout with conceited inanity, even as he planned an illegal war in Iraq, he welcomed his country's enemies through passport control.
Security personnel for the games, including 13,500 soldiers, will now total nearly 42,000, triple the original estimate, and more than the number of British soldiers who landed on the Normandy beaches on D-Day. So the bid for the games was based on wholly fictitious figures; yet there will be no fine for this, no punishment. All future bidders for the games henceforth now know that if they are to win it, they must lie through their teeth about the real costs, which will of course later be borne by their taxpayers.
For the real purpose of the games is not about sporting excellence; it is to boost the self-esteem of the leaders of the host country. To have the Olympics in one's back yard is the ultimate accolade for politicians: and of that species, every single example, from a local councillor, to university senator, to a member of a national parliament, is driven by self-esteem. So when a canvasser comes to your door, and says he or she is interested in your welfare, set the dog on them, I say; for they lie.
Ego-gratification is the primary purpose of ALL politics, and it is now the publicly unstated justification for the three great regular international jamborees: the World Cup, the Olympics and Climate Change Conferences. They are all the same thing, in different guises: they purport to be exercises in worldwide brotherhood and a coming-together of nations, but in reality they are opportunities for the blazered officials of the participating countries to parade in front of one another, while the organisers enjoy the vast endocrinal surge that comes from being twats.
This summer, you will hear much about the reasons for the Olympics. And every proclaimed word about the family of humankind will be as much a lie as the original costs contained in the British bid. The 2012 games are all about the insufferable egos of Tony Blair et alia.
Our hopes for Fionnuala aside, only one medal-contest is really suitable for such games: projectile-vomiting.