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Corruption & Ethics

Barcelona and London: Who tells the story?

When telling the story of Barcelona Professor Muñoz also made some interesting comments about the previous occupants of the docklands area which was cleared to make way for the new gentrified suburb. They were, he said, 'mainly women and squatters'. If I recall the number moved was 55,000, a lot of plainly undesirable women and squatters! Of course, as with the Lea Valley the allegedly derelict nature of the area was also rehearsed. It was after all a docklands area, rather like the industrial land cleared for the London 2012 Olympics, land deliberately used by the city for 'dirty' projects and providing services others preferred not to have on their doorstep but then condemned for those very purposes to justify its seizure. Professor Muñoz referred to the process by which the company redeveloping the site moved from being publicly controlled to privately controlled, as if this somehow justified the loss of housing for the poor. The Barcelona Olympics was supposed to deliver public benefits but failed to do so. As a public project it was for the city and national governments to ensure this occurred but they failed to do this.


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Paralympic sponsors kill, injure and disable people

By Steve Rushton

Why are corporations that are responsible for disabling people, and even killing people, allowed to brand their products at the Olympics?

This creates a disturbing hypothetical situation: Paralympians competing in London 2012 may have been disabled by the very corporations that their sporting prowess is promoting. More broadly, this draws attention to the number of people across the world that are disabled, killed and suffer due to corporate activities. The World Health Organisation attributes 1 in 5 deaths in the “developing” world to toxic and industrial pollution alone.[i] The most prolific killers include mining operations, the oil industry and metal production, which are all represented at the Games. A report by the Blacksmith Institute found that over 7 million lives were at risk from mining and ore processing, nearly 5 million from metal smelting, almost 3 million from heavy industry (metal casting, rolling, stamping) and just under 2 million from petrochemical industries.[ii] These sponsors of the Games are alongside companies not taking their responsibility for chemical disasters, who are involved in torture, illegal arms and weapons manufacturing .


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The Corporate Games!

Following the awarding of the Greenwash Gold Medal to Rio Tinto at a ceremony in Trafalgar Square when custard was poured over 'representatives' of the the three nominated companies, Rio Tinto, BP and Dow Chemical, who were then arrested by over-zealous police, War on Want organised the Adidas Exploitation Not Ok Anywhere Price Tags...


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Boris does Flag Fan Dangle Thing

Perfect casting for being hoist by his own petard. It's not everybody has their own Petard. The rich fat bastards have all the fun. That's not raw talent you know. They have the breeding you see. And the fagging. That and centuries of de Feffling about on a wet Saturday indoors with the croquet mallets.


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Little to celebrate

BRITISH Waterways has ceased to exist in England and Wales and in its place Canal & River Trust (CART) has at last been created to care for the waterways.


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Exploitation – the reality behind London 2012’s Adidas clothing

by Murray Worthy, campaigner at War on Want

Adidas this week comes under pressure to tackle the sweatshop conditions in its supplier factories as War on Want launches a new campaign (www.notokanywhere.org) over the exploitation of its workers. Our campaign demands the official sportswear partner of London 2012 and Team GB takes responsibility for the abuse of workers’ rights in its supply chains and has launched a video (http://youtu.be/NPVofA6DcLE) highlighting the reality of life for workers making Adidas goods.

For the London Games there are 25 official corporate sponsors and another 28 official corporate suppliers across industries as diverse as food, cars, banking and electronics. However, the Olympics are of particular significance to the global sportswear industry


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HypocritiCoe!

The row about Dow at London 2012 goes on. @BhopalMedicalAppeal recently pointed out that Coe had failed to respond to an open letter from AthletesAgainstDowChemical. Coe also promised to meet Dow Campaigners but, unsurprisingly, has failed to do so. Coe has a history of failing to keep promises. He also promised to visit Clays Lane when the estate was facing demolition but failed to turn up or get in touch. Yet a while later, when he was watching the tower blocks at Park Village being demolished along with Radio 4's You and Yours team, he was described by the presenter as having been at the 'sharp end' of dealing with those facing eviction. Coe did not demur and went on to mutter words of sympathy with the evictees.


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Paralympic Row Erupts Over Dow Chemical Sponsorship

Press Release from Drop Dow Now

Monday the 21st May is 100 days to the Paralympic Games, a date marked with controversy due to Dow Chemical’s Paralympic sponsorship.

Campaigners have called for Dow’s sponsorship of the London Paralympic Games to be dropped due to Dow’s ownership of Union Carbide, the company responsible for the Bhopal gas disaster in 1984. The disaster killed over 20,000 and caused injury and illness to thousands more [1]. Hundreds of children continue to be born every year with birth defects [2].


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