What happens after England lose….

There is more to life than football.

If you got angry at the football last night then you’ve probably got stuff going on in your own life that needs sorting out.

I think a bit of perspective is always helpful.

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5 things more unjust than Brazil vs Croatia

The neutral would have felt there was a sense of injustice against Croatia in the football last night.  I certainly did, though I do have a Balkan bias.  In fact it got me more angry than I have about much for a long time.  You know that sense of righteous anger when you know you have witnessed some huge injustice but you can’t really do anything about it?  That is what I was feeling.  I vented on facebook and twitter a bit, and waited for the likes, comments and re-tweets to help me feel justified in my anger.

And then it hit me – why do I feel so angry about a game of football when there are so many other injustices going on in the world that are infinitely more serious than a bad refereeing decision or two.

Here are my top 5 issues (with links) that I would rather not watch or read about:

  1. That the Syrian Civil War has been going for over three years
  2. That real people, including children, are trafficked for slavery and sexual exploitation
  3. That it’s likely that more than one child on my street has been abused recently
  4. That while you have been reading this blog about 6 children have died because they were hungry
  5. That this very World Cup that many of us are so excited about is the showcase event for one of the world’s most powerful, corrupt and down right evil bunch of humans – FIFA

Of course the list could go on.  They’re just headline grabbers.  Behind all of these are individual humans, suffering horrifically.

It’s just a bit overwhelming really.  What to do?

And getting angry about football….really?

Send Back The Sun

If you receive a free copy of The Sun through your letterbox today just take a few moments to think:

  • Remember this is the same group as the News of the World that everybody has conveniently forgotten to be disgusted at regarding phone hacking because they rebranded as The Sun on Sunday.
  • No doubt they will be putting some wonderfully positive, ‘let’s all support England together’ message across.  They do not care for England.  The Sun cares for profit and power.  If they will gain profit and power they would have no scruples about tearing this country down.
  • Think intelligently about the advertisements that are being pushed in your face through your letterbox today.  What lies are they telling you?
  • How do you feel about EVERY child in the UK being exposed to the content of what is in The Sun today?
  • Just like every religion and political movement has an ideology The Sun also has an ideology.  How would you feel if the Royal Mail delivered a Christian tract or a copy of the Koran through every door in the UK?
  • Why have they chosen to take out the pornography on page 3 today but feel it is acceptable to sell it in newsagents and shops every other day of the year?

So what can you do with The Sun?  You could save it as an emergency stash of toilet paper.  Or here are four easy steps to removing it quickly from your property:

  1. Roll it up tightly
  2. Hold it together with sellotape
  3. Write this address on it: FREEPOST, The Sun, London E98 1AX
  4. Pop it back in the post box for The Royal Mail

You can also take to social media – hashtags #sendbackthesun #nomorepage3 #keepitup are helpful.  The sad thing is this strategy from The Sun will benefit them, we are a species that struggle to discerne good from crap.  However, the more people in this country who think intelligently about what this means and don’t allow the toxic messages to get through to them the better.  Have a think about doing your bit and spread the word that we don’t have to have this garbage come into our homes.

If anybody else has any grand ideas of how to respond I’d love to hear them.

World Cup Silliness

I love the World Cup.  I remember Italia ’90 with Bobby Robson, Roger Milla and those little Coca-Cola footballs.  I love the World Cup draw, so much so that I would usually do my own mock draw before the real one and then predict all the different results and decide who would win the World Cup in my world.

Maybe I’ve got a slightly better perspective on life, maybe not, but what a load of faff just for a few balls and a few excitable old men.  I mean, is it really worth all the glitz and glamour and ceremony?  Is it really sensible flying 1800 of the world’s media in to cover it all?  Sport is wonderful for so many reasons but I think we allow it to loosen our grip on reality and what is important a bit too much sometimes.

And then you get all the middle aged men ‘back in the studio’ debating for hours whether England should fly straight into the Amazon from Miami or stick to the original hotel in Rio.  And then they move onto whether it is better for us to actually finish second in the group so the climate in round two will be a bit better but then we might end up playing a stronger team.  It really is ridiculous.  I think we all know that the only factor that matters in deciding whether England will qualify for the second round or not is whether the players can actually be bothered or whether their egos remain the only thing bigger than their bank balances.

I am really going to enjoy the World Cup, I will be up at 2am in the morning cheering England on against the Azure.  However, let’s please keep it all in perspective.  It is only a game, and a pretty silly game at that.

Where is Montenegro?

Where is Montenegro people ask?

The answer of course is that Montenegro is at the top of England’s group!  I must say I am extremely proud of Montenegro, I love that country so much!

I think a draw was probably a fair result but it was clearly a more useful point for Montenegro than England.  The difference between the actual result and a win for England was the same as the difference in the passion between the two teams.

Group H

  1. Montenegro   14pts
  2. England   12pts
  3. Poland   8pts
  4. Ukraine   8pts
  5. Moldova   4pts
  6. San Marino   0pts

There is only one nation in the world who has played England at least three times and never lost…..any ideas!?  Not bad for a country whose population is less than the number of registered footballers in England!

I’m not sure how long the video below will stay on YouTube but if you want to relieve some of the passion from last night click below:

 

USA holds UNESCO hostage

OK, so UNESCO is all about promoting peace and justice through countries working together to protect and celebrate culture, science and education.  Right?

So why, why, why, why, why is the United States employing bully-boy tactics and removing one fifth of UNESCO’s budget as a reprisal for UNESCO accepting Palestine as a member?  Palestine is a member of FIFA but you don’t see the United States boycotting the World Cup!

If the United States really cares about what UNESCO is all about – education, science and culture – then they wouldn’t turn it into a massive political game for spoilt children.  I honestly think this decision by America to try and hold the world hostage is deplorable.  Their decision will effect the development of education for children, the progress of science for preventing diseases and the loss of protection for some of the world heritage sites.

And worse than the United States is the cowardice of the United Kingdom.  We abstained in the vote to accept Palestine! It seems our conscience wouldn’t let us vote ‘no’ but we were to scared of the good old United States and Israel to vote ‘yes’!

Sorry for the rant I just think this is horrific.

I love O’Neill

I really love Martin O’Neill.  He is such an impressive man.  Ok, as a player he captained Northern Ireland at a time when they were arguably the best nation in Britain beating Spain at their home World Cup in 1982.  He won the European Cup with Nottingham Forest.

MON

As a manager he took Wycombe Wanderers from a non-league team to the third tierof English football.  He won two League Cups with the humble Leicester City and got them into Europe,  he got Celtic to the final of the UEFA Cup, and he got Villa to 6th place in the Premier League 3 times in a row in a time when a lot of other teams had a lot more money.

I love it that he quit football for a while to look after his wife who was seriously sick.

And I love the fact that he doesn’t take any trouble from anyone.  He left Villa when they started trying to screw him around and now he’s dumped a courting West Ham United because they thought they could use a media leak to get him in quick.  An entertaining man of principle, very admirable.  I hope he gets a huge club next so that he can win the big trophies he deserves.