The cautionary tale of Pat Hickey: How the Olympics Got Seduced by Money, and Lost its Way

Ireland and Europe’s most senior Olympic official sits arrested image (2)in Rio, on charges of ticket scalping.  

Meanwhile, pizza restaurants and small clothing shops receive threatening letters from the Olympics, telling them not to tweet the Games That Must Not Be Named.  (Lawyers say ‘I don’t think that’s what the law says’.)

It’s all a sign of an Olympic movement which has lost its way, its officials seduced by big money.

See Forbes for more (it’s by me)


  • chrisjones2

    You forget too the looming shambles of the Paralympic Games where it seems the organisers have spent all the cash and are actively discriminating

    The bottom line if that these large multi national sports organisations feel they are beyond the laws of nation states and its time to reign them in. They also often seem to be populated by ‘representatives’ whose aims are to fill their own pockets and those of their cronies

    There are two options here.

    First Governments can do it – but then many of those involved in the corruption come from states where that is the norm. I therefore dont think thats viable. Just witness the debacle over Russian doping!

    Second, the real key lies with teh sponsors and media companies. They pull the strings and we need to ensure that where there is incompetence or corruption it actively damages their brands. Thats when things will start to change

  • murdockp

    as usual this is more than Olympics and is all to do with power in Ireland and who holds it and who is in the network.

    this goes all the way back to Charles haughey.

    when you see this class of people who literally do nothing of social value being paid eye watering salaries you don’t feel sorry for them when they fall from grace.

    eyes on John delaney I feel. another of the elite who are wired into the power.

  • JohnTheOptimist

    You are presuming guilt. He hasn’t been charged with anything yet, let alone convicted.

    Kevin Mallon has been in prison for 3 weeks and hasn’t been charged with anything yet, let alone convicted. If he was a member of the Muslim Brotherhood and suspected of planning jihad attacks, but not charged after 3 weeks in prison, there’d now be nightly TD-led demonstrations at the embassy.

    In this country I think the maximum you can be imprisoned without charge for is a few days. Didn’t the PSNI have to release Gerry Adams after 72 hours (or was it 48?) when he was recently taken in for questioning on rather more serious charge?

    As Michael Martin said today, the presumption of innocence until proven guilty has been totally abandoned (by the Irish media) in this case.

    I don’t know any more than I read in the papers. So. I have no idea if more serious allegations will be made. If fraud or theft are involved, then obviously they deserve heavy punishment. But, so far all I’ve read is (as yet unproven) allegations of activities that are perfectly legal in Britain, Ireland and all economically-free countries.

    I just googled Ticketmaster. They’re selling tickets for next week’s All-Ireland Hurling final for £600.

    No sign of them being arrested. No sign of media condemnation.

    Nor should there be. Its a perfectly legitimate business. No one is forced to purchase the tickets. I won’t be doing so myself. But, if Tyrone were in it, I well might. Should I be imprisoned for so doing?

    I guess its the difference between an economically-free country and an economically-unfree one. Ireland is ranked 8th in the Global Economic freedom Index, Britain 10th, while Brazil is 120th (behind many tinpot African dictatorships). Not surprisingly, Ireland and Britain are prosperous, while Brazil is increasing marxist, is in deep recession, and is heading down the Venezuela route.

    As for the Brazil police, they are now the latest heroes of liberal Ireland. Lots of left-wing commentators like Collette Browne bemoaning the fact that the Gardai aren’t like them. They should be careful what they wish for. The Brazil police have shot dead 11,000 people in the past 5 years.

  • John Gorman

    Why the surprise this has been going on for years it hasnt just lost its way. The IOC taught FIFA everything it knows regarding bribes and back handers during bidding processes

  • chrisjones2

    Heres a shock for you. Different countries have different legal systems and this case is being investigated in line with Brazilian law. You dont like it dont go to Brazil to commit (alleged) crime.

    It would also be quite similar in France and a number of other ‘democratic’ countries.

    Still isn’t it great that alleged and convicted Irish drug mules, fraudsters, con men, ticket touts etc can always rely on politicians back home to support them, just in case there is a vote in it

  • Anglo-Irish

    No idea as to whether the men are guilty or not, but let’s be honest, did anyone come down with a fit of the vapours when the news came out?

    Possible financial skullduggery in sporting organization awash with money.

    Bet most peoples reaction was something along the lines of ” No sh*t Sherlock! ”

    Once the money comes in corruption follows.

    Friend of mine is a public school educated rugby fan. He loved to take the pee out of me for supporting soccer and was always going on about the cheating involved.

    I pointed out to him that it was because the money involved encouraged cheating, on a win bonus of thousands not going down in the box at the slightest touch is letting your team mates down.

    When rugby went professional I said to him that it was only a matter of time. He assured me that that would never happen in rugby ” different class of people you know”.

    I bumped into him just after the ‘Bloodgate scandal’ and before I could say a word he held up his hands.

    And that’s at the playing end, when it comes to the administrators it’s Christmas day all year round.

    It would be nice to think it will get sorted out but given human nature and the love of money I have my doubts.

  • Tochais Siorai

    ‘I just googled Ticketmaster. They’re selling tickets for next week’s All-Ireland Hurling final for £600.’

    Ah Seatwave, Ticketmaster’s dodgy little brother. They appear to have some kind of legal loophole in not selling the tickets themselves but ‘facilitate’ the buyer trying to make a killing and the seller desperate for the ticket whilst charging a commission for doing so.

  • John Collins

    Which politician at home has made any statement of support for the Irishmen detained in Brazil. Charlie Flanagan has said he will not interfere in the judicial process in this case or in the Halawii case in Egypt, which has now gone for three years, without a trial. BTW are there no British criminals?. After all the UK Government were not exactly delighted when the same Brazilian authorities refused to extradite the great train robber, Ronnie Biggs.
    It also should be noted that Mrs Thatcher protested strongly when a far eastern country decided to execute British drug smugglers, who knew beforehand that execution was the penalty for drug smuggling in that country.
    Of course I have no sympathy for any people who cash in on ticket sales in the fashion suggested in this case, but I would prefer to see the outcome of the judicial process before commenting further.