The Football Is Fixed Inaugural Annual Awards
Football Matches of the Year: Mexico v Argentina and Germany v Italy in the World Cup provided a reminder of the type of uplifting competitive soccer that used to be more common prior to the influx of gambling money into the game.
Political Leader of the Year: Evo Morales (the President of Bolivia) who continues to stand up for the rights of the coca growing campesinos in the face of American pressure to control the sources of cocaine in South and Central America. Having observed how Uribe (with US backing) eradicated FARC plantations while accomodating AUC plantations in Colombia, Morales and his Movimiento al Socialismo are having none of it.
Football Chant of the Year: He Eats Chow Mein, He Votes Sinn Fein, Nakamura, Nakamura (Glasgow Celtic)
Reformed Psychopath of the Year: Bill Gates for setting up the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to oversee global poverty and health issues as opposed to profit and wealth issues. One would like to think that this was his initial aim when setting up Microsoft. A pity that it takes private philanthropy to address Third World poverty. A big up for Warren Buffett too.
Sportsperson of the Year: Ricky Ponting. Pom-basher extraordinaire.
Rigged Election of the Year: Mexico by a mile. Utilising electoral procedures more commonly seen in Rwanda and Florida, Calderon and the PAN stole the election from the mayor of Mexico City, Lopez Obrador. Little chance of a country adjacent to the USA developing democratic politics after 71 years of dictatorship under the Orwellian-named Institutional Revolutionary Party.
Dodgy Refereeing Performance of the Year: Poll for trying to prevent the gamble on Australia being landed by denying the Aussies two penalties, disallowing a fair dinkum goal, refusing to send off a second Croat after 3 bookings and generally losing the plot big style. Interesting that his "international retirement" announced post World Cup doesn't include Champions League, UEFA Cup or Euro 2008 games.
Abuse of Democracy of the Year: USA and Israel for undermining, sanctioning, illegally arresting, killing and generally destabilising the democratically elected government of Palestine, Hamas.
Sports Scandal of the Year: Moggiopoli.
Sports Whitewash of the Year: The Steven's report into bung culture.
Political Duplicitous Bastard of the Year: Blair.
Judicial Duplicitous Bastard of the Year: The dodgy David Mills QC (quite crooked?).
Most Interesting Mafiosi Befriending the British establishment of the Year: Super Silvio Berlusconi.
Politicised Footballers of the Year: Patrick Vieira and Lilian Thuram for supporting the rights of disenfranchised immigrants in France and being top players too. El Hadji Diouf for his support for Mouride causes. Can't imagine Ashley Cole or Frank Lampard getting political eh?
Political Appointment of the Year: Hank Paulson moving from Goldman Sachs to US Treasury Chief and only agreeing to go if the US government finally got serious about global climate change.
Footballers of the Year: Ronaldo for being a circus star but, mainly, for getting Engerland knocked out of the World Cup. Essien for being class.
Disappointment to his Father of the Year: Hillary Benn.
Dead Fascist of the Year: Pinochet and let's hope Thatcher joins her role model asap. And people wonder why Latin America has moved to the Left...
Fixed Football Match of the Year: Celtic beating Man Utd. Brilliant theatre proving that sometimes crooked can be artistic.
Investment Bank of the Year: Goldman Sachs - these people know how to trade the markets.
Crap Transfer of the Year: Mourinho for Gallas/ Cole swap. Unbelievable.
Customer Focused Company of the Year: Google. Love the algorithm. Love Blogspot.
Internet Radio Station of the Year: Pandora. My personal DJ.
News Channel of the Year: Al Jazeera. Proper Global Coverage.
Blogs of the Year: The Daily Kos State of the Nation (www.dailykos.com) and Prudent Bear (www.prudentbear.com).
Best Read of the Year: A People's History of the United States by Howard Zinn; Understanding Power by Noam Chomsky; Writing And Difference by Jacques Derrida.
Ostrich of the Year: Joint winners Niall Ferguson - colonialism-denier and Bjorn Lomborg - idiotic sceptic.
Slipped Mask of the Year: Blair's apoplexy when a Tory backbencher suggested that England is becoming a police state.
Anarchist Business of the Year: Skype - not content with mashing the music companies with KaZaA, they are now targeting the telecoms companies.
Great White Satan 1 Iran 0 (Iran Ban):
FIFA has today suspended Iran from all international football competitions. We are all totally convinced that this was a footballing decision and a footballing decision alone. Absolutely nothing to do with sanctions in any form. Something suitably arbitrary like government interference in the game was the reason provided. Definitely much more serious than Moggiopoli then.
Global football moves increasingly in step with World Government. Certain countries are rewarded for their compliance with a globalised shareholder society - for example in recent times, Ukraine, Angola, Trinidad and Tobago and a little further back Croatia and Czech Republic. Others are punished - Uzbekistan, North Korea, Iran, Kenya, Romania and China.
Perhaps countries undertaking free market reforms should be weighted by a couple of tenths of a goal in FIFA competitions to take account of this!?