The Olympic Legacy?

I caught sight of the Olympic torch the other day….for about 10 seconds! So, that’s what all my taxes paid for! As a kid asked “is that it!”. Now if you’re lucky enough to have got tickets for the games, I suppose you get to see some events, although I was put off myself by the no-so-reassuringly expensive ticket prices, although I’m personally planning to avoid central London during the games.

Channel 4’s Dispatches did an expose recently about how many hotellers are preparing to fleece people attending the games by vastly inflating their room prices (at £60 a night room will cost you £285 sort of stuff). Also a number of the city’s scum landlords (I was originally going to type in slum landlord but scum slipped out and I think its a more accurate description!) have also begun evicting tenants so that they can rent out flats to people attending the games. Meanwhile, despite assurances from the authorities it seems that if you’re prepared to pay through the nose, you can still get Olympic tickets from touts. A dispatches reporter was offered tickets to the 100m’s final for £25k each!

So it would seem the legacy of the games is lots of homeless people, some stadia that we won’t use and lots of greedy immoral people getting rich off the back of them. Now call me all negative, but that doesn’t strike me as value for money.

Missile Woes

Another element of madness about the game is the government’s insistence on installing surface to air missiles within the capital, much to the annoyance of local residences. I think all this policy demonstrates is that government minsters watch too many Hollywood movies.

When an aircraft gets struck by a missile, it does not explode into a massive fireball and disappear. No, it falls out of the sky on fire! Indeed modern SA missiles are rarely designed to actually hit an aircraft (think about it, trying to hit an object moving that fast with another fast moving object is the equivalent of someone shooting at you and you trying to shoot down the bullets!). No, instead they rely on fragmentation warheads detonated at a stand off distance (sort of like a cluster bomb) which showers the target aircraft with shrapnel, rupturing fuel tanks, severing control cables, destroying engines and avionics. The aircraft catches fire, stalls, its airframe begins to fail under the increased aerodynamic stresses and it starts to break up and you get lots of bits of flaming wreckage falling out of the sky over a wide area….ultimately landing on something….or inevitably in a major metropolitan area onto someone.

So this is really a waste of time. I mean if we’re going to be doubly safe why not deploy submarines on the Thames on the off chance Al Qaeda deploy their crack squad of suicide alligators….Or what if they sneak a box into the VIP section containing snakes….or they just sneak Ken Livingstone into Boris Johnson’s box…..or maybe they could just use the missiles the MoD left unguarded outside some London flats recently!

In short, one gets the impression that the government’s planning to turn central London into something resembling the “green zone” in Baghdad, another good reason to catch all the action on TV. An incident today, where it would seem that some guy smoking a fag on a bus triggered a major security alert should show how jittery they are.

Of course what worries me is that this will inevitably lead to some sort of tragedy. Where for example, a charter flight carrying people into London for the Games, from a foreign country gets disoriented over the capital (as anyone who has ever flown into London will know it’s often foggy and many flights go right over the city centre), stray’s into restricted air space, the spooks hear the pilots talking in a foreign language on the radio and shoot him down. So I won’t advice taking any flights into or out of London airports for awhile!

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4 thoughts on “The Olympic Legacy?

  1. You didn’t pay all your taxes for the Olympic torch. Some of your hard earned went towards the search for the Higgs Boson.
    And you must admit, finding something that once released from the nucleus of an atom decays within three hundred millionths of a second is a very worthwhile project.

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  2. Higg’s Boson, okay, money well spent (maybe!). Olympics, waste of money! The only countries that host big international events these days are tin pot dictatorships looking to massage their leader’s ego….then again we do have Boris!….and before him Red Ken!

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  3. it’s a bit alarming that a false alarm on a bus on a motorway can trigger such a secruity presence – i mean if you were a suicide bus bomber then as soon as you saw the cops you would blow yourself up – so if it was the real thing doubt they would have been able to prevent it… they are probably just practicing – alot of tax payers money here too!

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  4. I think (and hope!) that the scenario in your last paragraph is unlikely.
    The nonsense was here today, and thankfully I managed to avoid it.
    I don’t object to our hosting the games per se, which after all will only be once in the lifetime of most of us.
    But combined with the recent Jubilee celebrations it’s swallowing up a huge amount of public money, in these supposedly ‘austere’ times, which is not the case at all, but threatens to become so.
    I found this Amnesty International article, published prior to the 2008 Olympics :
    http://asiapacific.amnesty.org/apro/aproweb.nsf/pages/olympics/$file/asa170502008.pdf
    Whilst our human rights record is vastly superior to China’s, there’s the same mentality of obsessively wanting to control and stage-manage.
    The traffic-lanes just for VIP’s (there’s a £130 fine for any mere mortal straying into them) have been likened to Moscow’s ‘Zil Lanes’, during the Soviet era.
    I too will avoid London during the games, due to the disruption caused by the vast influx of visitors, and the likely virtual ‘police state’ within miles of the stadium, and because of the significant danger of elements sympathetic to Al Quaeda being determined to have a go.

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