June 10, 2010 - London, UNITED KINGDOM - epa02196507 Mayor of London Boris Johnson poses next to children from St Joseph's primary school to mark the start of the FIFA World Cup 2010 and back the bid for England 2018 in Trafalgar Square, London, England on 11 June 2010. People in the square will also be able to watch the opening ceremony and the opening match between South Africa and Mexico.

It's FIFA's world, we're all just living in it.

That's the only conclusion I can draw at the moment, beaten down by the spin world soccer's governing body is able to put on even the most damning accusations of corruption.  England's 2018 World Cup bid is in trouble, if reports are to be believed, and all because a few English journalists did their bit to expose the rampant greed that exists within FIFA's executive committee.  As the old saying goes, no good deed goes unpunished.

This very possible response - punishing the whole of English football because FIFA was caught in a compromising position by English journalists within English borders - crystallizes just how rotten to the core the game is at its highest levels.  Perhaps even more disturbing is the - excuse the language - mindfuck FIFA has done on so many involved by farcically painting themselves as the victims in the fallout over The Sunday Times exposé.  It's they who have been wronged, maligned by unethical muckrakers who entrapped FIFA officials through fraudulent means, and while none of us believe the spin, they've managed to manipulate the situation so that it hardly matters.  The situation is static, those with any connection to FIFA institutionalized.  If corruption is all you're exposed to, it becomes the norm.  Breaking that chain requires drastic action.

Anyone with the scantest bit of soccer awareness anywhere on this godforsaken spheroid knows that FIFA is corrupt.  You and I, people with zero power to do anything about it, know that FIFA is corrupt.  Soccer officials the world over, including the likes of Sunil Gulati and Don Garber, know that FIFA is corrupt, but choose to sit idly by lest they risk a chance at their reward.   And there's the rub.

If corruption is prevailing state, and no one is willing to step outside of the box to address it for fear of reprisal or losing out on their chance to host a World Cup, FIFA will have no reason to change.  The cries foul from Sepp Blatter and Mohamed Bin Hammam over "sting operations" ring hollow, but serve to galvanize their base of support.  If England's bid does lose, it won't be because the they didn't deserve to host after 52 years,  but because the ExCo "circled the wagons."  How dare you expose us for what we are.

"Forging identity, fabricating evidence and setting traps are unethical behaviours in my point of view. One thing about Middle East media, these are rare happenings there. Is it ethical to use unethical measures to protect the ethic? How can we serve justice and look for fairness by not acting justly and fairly? How will we clean dirty laundry by using dirty water?"

- Asian Confederation president Mohamed Bin Hammam

FIFA's brazen and unapologetic (don't be fooled by the suspensions of Adamu and Teramii - they aren't an admission of organizational wrongdoing) evasion of the corruption issue are the classic actions of a monopolistic outfit operating with no oversight.  The Sunday Times caught two FIFA officials offering to sell their bid votes for cash; after a short period of rabble and the predictable spanking of England, everything will go on as it was.

Unless a national federation, or several of them in tandem does something explosive.

It would take a symbolic action the likes of which world football has never seen, perhaps one that might result in the expulsion or suspension of the nation in question, for anything to change.  A nation or nations boycotting the World Cup, the higher profile, the better.  Countries pulling out of FIFA en masse, choosing instead to form a separate body with a competing international tournament.  A flat out rejection of the power FIFA has over the game.

In other words, things that will never happen.  The system is too entrenched, the reelection of inept and unscrupulous leadership too beneficial to those with a stake in perpetuating the status quo.

Blatter will likely be reelected as FIFA president because no one of any standing will oppose him.  The aforementioned Bin Hammam was thought to be a possible challenger, but looks certain to serve another four years as AFC president.  On the evidence of his statements above, he would hardly represent an upgrade anyway.

The idea that The Sunday Times acted irresponsible in doing their journalistic best to expose FIFA corruption is laughable.  Neither should they be expected to pull back on their story in some misplaced nod to English solidarity, or to alert FIFA to their findings before publishing them.  Nevertheless, it would surprise no one if the fortunes of the many are affected by the actions of the few.

We're all helpless bystanders as a vindicative cartel springs into action.

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