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by Jason Moore

T HE buzz word in Spain at the moment is austerity. There is no money in the bank and Spain has been under pressure to ask for a bailout from the European Union because of the financial mess the country is in at the moment. So why is Madrid bidding to host the Olympic Games in 2020? For a country with five million unemployed and where 500'000 people have lost their homes in the last four years, I think the Olympic bid is a scandalous waste of money. How can Madrid preach austerity when billions is going to be spent on the Olympic Games? Some would say that Greece´s economic hardship started when it decided to host the Olympic Games. Some host nations have lost billions. London successfully managed the Games but it must be remembered that much of the money was earmarked for the project before the credit crunch and the subsequent recession. This is Madrid´s third Olympic bid. Two have obviously been unsuccessful, so money has already been spent. I thought that the European Union was watching Spain closely so that it doesn´t go on yet another spending spree. Surely an Olympic bid falls into this category. Madrid should save its money. When the economic climate improves and Spain gets back to positive economic growth again then it can start considering bidding for the Olympics again. But until then it should be austerity all the way and any spare money should be spent on those in need not wasteful Games.