Friday, June 20, 2008

Boris, The Olympic Messenger

When the 2012 London Olympics go pear-shaped, don't blame Boris. But we can already start to thank him for forcing New Labour politicians and their big business partners to start to own up to this financial shambles.

His forensic examination of the spiralling Olympics costs are already unearthing some of the skulduggery that went on behind the scenes to secure the bid. And forcing the government's main watchdog, the National Audit Office (NAO), to finally crawl out of the woodwork and do its job properly. 

Today the NAO highlighted the lack of a deal for construction of the Olympic Village, which is expected to cost more than £1 billion. And reported that plans for individual venues, including the main stadium and security costs were yet to be finalised.

The London Olympics is set to become one of the biggest financial disasters in the world. Its shameful legacy and financial repercussions will be there long after the the last team has flown home with their medals.

The true London Olympic cost has been full of deceit and spin since the beginning. The original bid put the cost at around £4 billion. This was later admitted to be just a number plucked out of thin air to secure the bid. Nothing like the true cost which no one can yet put a figure on. Officially it's around £9 billion but unofficially around £14 billion. It's rising by the week and there's still four years to go. 

As Mayor of London, Johnson can only observe from the side lines. The real driving force is the New Labour Elite - pushing though this fiasco as part of Blair's legacy.

Announcing a free party in the Mall in August, to 'celebrate' the handover of the Games from Beijing, London 2012 Olympics chairman, Sebastian 'Lord' Coe, described it as: "Starting the narrative of what we want to be saying about ourselves." 

Oh my goodness. It's that word 'narrative'. NewLabourSpeak. A reminder of the empty  language used for the empty Millennium Dome. An omen of what is yet to come. As for the cost? Just think of the Millennium Dome - then multiply that mess by a few thousand.

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