Tuesday, 23 August 2016

Rio a shameless exposure of Union propaganda?

The Rio Olympics has seen a rash of different  approaches of how the medal tables would look

We Have the official Table

One based on the European Union

Which Brought out he response from  Tory MP Heather Wheeler

We have our own version sorry its not up to date

Or one based population

What it does prove is that the Olympics have become a potent political weapon . The BBC coverage of team GB has resembled a Soviet style broadcast where could have more chance of knowing the name "British" Athlete who just lost out on a Bronze than who won the Gold.

It has become a shameless promotion pf the Union where we are expected to get behind Team GB a. With   Welsh Conservative leader Andrew RT Davies even ordering  a party press release  attacking the Football Association of Wales and its counterparts in Scotland and Northern Ireland for “petty nationalism” in opposing the Team GB women’s football side. Davies claimed  the three had “blocked” a Team GB entry in the women’s football competition, “in a huge blow to the development of the game”.

But has been pointed out 

But Davies, the BBC announcer and an increasing number of ill-informed commentators seem to have overlooked the fact Great Britain hadn’t even taken part in the Olympic qualifying process.England would have qualified for the Olympics if it had a National Olympic Committee, but like Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland it doesn’t and probably isn’t eligible for International Olympic Committee recognition. But it seems the third place finish the England Women’s team achieved at last year’s World Cup is what has reignited Davies’ passion for a Great Britain.
..... How would the other teams at the Olympics react to find rather than playing the qualifiers, England in 2016 – perhaps Wales in 2020 -, they must instead compete against Great Britain? A team drawn from a squad good enough to qualify as of right and improved by the best players from neighbouring countries.
Even if the ‘home nations’ could reach agreement they are just four of 211 member nations in FIFA, world football’s governing body. While Davies and the English FA can’t persuade three associations to support a Team GB – the danger is a majority of the other 207 associations may well back a Great Britain football team but not the continuation of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland – who all basically compete internationally under grandfather rights – as independent football nations.
It is a prime example of Unionist who see  “petty nationalism” in those like myself who would have liked to see Wales and Scotland represented as individual nations in the Olympics and who think participating is the point of being a Nation not how many medals you win.

I did not get behind Team GB but I celebrated Individual achievements from  many of the athletes from these Islands  but then I always wanted Usain Bolt to win as well.

Are we really going to get the Olympics used as a means of pr emoting the Union every four years rather than a simple pride in the achievements of our athletes who did their best winners and losers.


  1. How about wales enters its own team in the olympic games? just as we do in football, rugby and the commonwealth games - then the wales women's football team could have a side in the olympics, that should shut the buffoonish RT Davies up!

    But of course that is the last thing he would want - despite his sudden apparent interest in women's football.The likes of Davies are only interested in seeing footballers at the olympic games so long as its under the flag of the 'union' - a flag on which wales isnt even represented!

    PS you beat me to it with this post Glyn :) But i am just starting out lol.


  2. Yes Glyn, it's been a veritable British medal frenzy in the media over the last couple of weeks.

    I remember a time when Soviet and eastern European medal achievements were regularly disparaged by the British establishment. The support that the athletes got from the state and the way their success was used for political purposes was frowned upon by the west.

    Looks like that's no longer a problem for the Brits. How times have changed.

  3. Since the GB team is funded by the National Lottery, a completely participant funded enterprise without any government subsidy or top-up, the politicos of whatever colour or social standing should stay out of it: after all they contributed nothing as a group, though some individuals not claiming expenses for the cost might buy a lottery ticket or two. What would be interesting is to quantify the amount of lottery tickets bought in each of the four separate countries, and the amount of lottery funding granted to each of the four countries. As to GB the medals were bought at a cost of £5 million each, not even the Old Eastern Bloc spent that amount for their (drug helped) supremacy. Plus, if Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland fielded separate teames they would have many more competitors since they would not have super-funded English sportspersons to compete against for places (cf. Commonwealth Games with 101 medals between these three countries).

  4. And where is the USSR today? Confident states don't need his froth. Only states that feel under threat feel they need to behave in this way to distract attention from their real problems. One of the big selling points of the London Olympics was legacy. That is why lottery grants for local activities in many locations were with drawn for five or six years to pay for the event.Many small sports clubs suffered from loss of grant aid. And the net result of the London Olympics in England the host country was a drop in sporting participation of 0.4%.