Tuesday, April 08, 2008

Sydney getting a little cross

Keep out if you're not a pilgrim, THE Sydney city centre has been declared a virtual no-go zone for cars during World Youth Day and the NSW Government is urging the city's workforce of 280,000 to take leave and work from home.

I’m not known for my support for religious organisations, though equally I don’t recognise the Catholic Church as a religious organisation, it is a business. Special provisions handing the city over to this organisation is ruffling feathers in Sydney and beyond.

World Youth Day, the six-day gathering of Catholics in July, will necessitate the closure of 300 roads, or about 25 per cent of the central road network The disruptive impact of World Youth Day would be as great as the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation summit and the Olympics combined.

125,000 international attendees are expected, with up to 600,000 expected to attend the Sunday mass. So far local and overseas registrations are falling well below expectations. The justification of buggering the whole city for a week is an economic injection of $231 million, well if all the suckers turn up.

The real question: When these specific interest groups like the Catholics, and in the previous story athletes, take over our lives; why do they never measure the cost of disruption against the apparent financial benefit?

The Catholic Church has a poor record of delivering any great social benefits to communities it infects. Currently in Australia the organisation is profit generation focused, from the various health care and welfare fronts it controls. I am even losing any sympathy for the lingering adherents who are little more than a dupe to justify the benefits given to religious organisations.

It looks like Australia might now be saved the disruption of the Olympic flame runs, but no one seems to have the guts to tell the pope to let us get on without the chaos his visits cause.


D.K. Raed said...

jeez first the ironmen, now this. how many more road closures can you endure? I assume your churches are also tax exempt so this is all free publicity for them. six-effing-hundred at a mass? I can't even imagine! I would guess the Sydney pubs will appreciate the $231mil windfall, both from the faithful after their mass business is done for the day, and from your local population during the mass, in thanks for not having to be at the mass themselves.

ps, you are Progressive Blogger, Cart! Stop by and get your award. I know, I know, award schmaward (or progressive schpagressive), but still ...

Cart said...

Thanks D.K. The progressive is fine. I'm not sure about the patriot :)

I'm just narked with the WYD because I didn't get the contract for the wafers...