Knighthoods for votes and other alleged FIFA misdeeds

Originally posted on Quartz:

As the US Department of Justice’s investigates the so-called “World Cup of Fraud,” in which officials from soccer’s top governing body allegedly took $150 million in bribes and kick-backs, details emerging about FIFA members are astounding. Here are some of the most brazen allegations from both the indictment and previous reports:

A suitcase stacked with dollars. Jack Warner, the former head of the Central and North American Football Association, was allegedly bribed with a suitcase filled with $10,000 in stacks of bills, left in a Paris hotel, to cast a vote for South Africa to host the 2010 World Cup, according to the US Department of Justice. Warner, who has resigned from the football business entirely, denies the charges.

A Miami condo with soccer cash. Daryll Warner, Jack’s son, “funded a 2005 purchase of a Miami, Florida condominium, held in 33 the name of a member of…

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The FIFA corporate sponsor corruption dashboard

Originally posted on Quartz:

Are your favorite brands backing an alleged criminal conspiracy polluting the world’s beautiful game?

The arrest of senior FIFA officials to be tried in the US on corruption charges is the huge blow to the soccer organization’s brazen culture, but the message won’t really get through until the corporate sponsors that provide the organization’s funding demand change. FIFA won’t change its ways until chief Sepp Blatter is personally indicted—or the money runs out.

We’re looking at you, Coca-Cola, Adidas, McDonalds, Hyundai, Visa, Budweiser, and Gazprom. Well, maybe not Gazprom.

It’s hard to imagine the big World Cup television deals that provide most of the funding going away. The problem with FIFA’s history of scandal is always that it can hide behind the massive popularity of the sport it brings, and someone will always pony up to broadcast the global soccer competition.

But the sponsors who are paying simply to associate their brands with FIFA—$1.6…

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Neil Young wrote a song about Starbucks and it’s really bizarre

Originally posted on Quartz:

Rocker Neil Young has a history of being both crotchety and single-minded in his music. He’s put out concept albums about electric cars, former US president George W. Bush, and even his own career. Now he’s turning his attention to Monsanto, the agricultural chemical company, on his forthcoming album, The Monsanto Years.

In a song which officially debuted May 22 on the Democracy Now radio show, Young voices his concerns about Starbucks and its alleged connection to Monsanto, along with the allegation that the coffee store may not be labeling genetically-modified products.

Starbucks has denied Young’s claims in the past, telling CNN in December that it “is not aligned with Monsanto.” (Starbucks and Monsanto weren’t immediately available for comment for this story.)

Young wrote and released his Kent State massacre song “Ohio” in about a week, and protested the first Bush administration with the oft-misused “Rockin’ in the Free World,” but…

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