for politicians to use sports events to promote themselves? I think not but they will do it anyway. That is why we have our Beloved Leader Rudd and our Beloved State Leader Rann appearing all over the paper with the Tour Down Under Cycling mob in this morning's paper.
It led me to wonder about the sports people involved. What if they do not want to appear to with a politician - of any flavour? Are they given a choice?
I rather doubt this. I suspect that the top sportsmen and sportswomen are told by their minders that there will be a photo shoot and that is it. They have to grit their teeth and meet another pollie who tells them how wonderful they are - but with the expectation that they will return the favour ten times over.
Sport at this level is really big business by another name. There is money to be made from sponsorship deals. We all know that. The obscene amounts paid to the small number of people at the top are excused on the grounds that these people are (a) at the top of their class and (b) under a lot of pressure to perform and (c) they will only be there for a few years. We should also perhaps add (d) they will have sold their souls to one devil or another.
Sport barely rates a mention in this house. I have a passing interest in cricket. The psychology of the game interests me. Football bores me to tears. I have no idea how to play golf or tennis. The giant school sports day they call the "Olympic Games" is an excuse to turn the television set off for the duration and read. It is riddled with drug taking and corruption. There is a logical limit to the breaking of world records.
I see no point in pumping human beings full of performance enhancing drugs and turning them into something they were never intended to be just so that couch potatoes can get an adrenalin fix. I would rather those who made shoes and balls employed adults and used their profits to provide shoes for those who have none. It won't happen.
I look at the smug faces of our Beloved Leaders. I am thankful I am not a sportsperson of any sort. I do not have to meet a Beloved Leader. I do not have to have my photograph taken. I do not have to be polite through gritted teeth and a pretence of a smile.
Yes, the money would be nice but I won't have sold my soul to a politician of any brand.