Back in the last century, which, quite like this century (so far), our society
was without any doubt constantly in the red,
with a demand for readies that exceeded
the supply. The state seems in constant collapse, with an unending scramble
for finance to back it up. Therefore, wasn't one so very dumbfoundered when suddenly, during the hour of need,
authorities find a billion quid going spare for an
elitist celebration. I ask you... Its a shame this insult to the electorate
didnt cause a minor revolution, but their loyalty was bought with promises of
'One Amazing Day' and a damp firework display, which the populus paid for too.
This was your money that they were spending!
The spiffing plan was to create a building as a central showpiece for the millennium eve celebrations. Our elders finally came up with a giant tent of unparrelled enormity. But what would go in this tent, and who would pay for it? Luckily for those confused politicos, they have an unlimited supply of our wonderful cash to blown away on such fantasies. The overspend on this contemptable mess was to finally work out to a billion quid, but still they had no idea of its contents. But no time to worry about that. Millenium eve was upon them. On that great day, royalty, leaders, and the privileged sank champagne and canapes inside, as the peasants shivered outside. They enjoyed a show and fireworks all at our great expense, and then fled, to make way for an exhibit of shocking desperation to justify the tent's existence. Why were they suddenly begging for us to go and see their hastely set up corporate exhibitions? Were we just corporate fodder?
In the new millenia we were all delivered this exhibit, itself being one giant corporate commercial hoarding and back-patting charade that the sad multitudes were pressurized into attending and thus spending delicate wages in the process. The poor and needy were therefore coerced into literally paying twice for something they didnt want, even paying for the marketing that was to seduce them into the hive of cheap novelty. Government neurosis went into overdrive in worry over attraction ratings over the fiasco of their own making. Public were pushed into sampling this overpriced 'One Amazing Day' with free tickets created from more public funds and more media frenzy. This tent was being forced into being a success no matter what the cost. But what a joke it had become. Like gormless little sheep, the residents of London and beyond paid up more money to see what was inside. No one was amazed.
Ultimately the Dome became an exercise in justifying the lost dream of some long lost evil spin doctoring dreamer, and the resultant billion pound price tag. How embarassing for all. A farce uncontained, even to the extent of securing the services of the ex-disney Monsieur Gerbil, in an effort to make something out of nothing. And after a year, it was all over anyway, with the tents interior cleared and an additional limitless float for upkeep, the hapless white shell continued as a spot on the landscape for years. So far, its made a great occasional party venue, but now that the government have given the Dome away to big biz, who knows what the future holds. One Billion Quid up in smoke. When will it all end? When are they going to blow it up?
Update 2007: Ok, so finally, after 7 long years in mothballs, the Dome reopened as the O2 Arena. Entertainment complex, shops services, the usual thing. What else could they have done with it? It's just the usual development plan to salvage any lost cause. But at the end of the day, it's still only a large tent, built solely for the government's private millenium party, and then left to rot. A billion quid that could have helped people in real need. Some people could have even got their pensions back. Let nobody forget this sickening travesty.
Charles (of London Town)