In an interview this week with the Swiss-German daily Tages-Anzeiger, International Ski Federation (FIS) president Gian Franco-Kasper dropped some next-level nonsense. I mean, it was A DOOZY.
Deadspin, who translated the word vomit, described the sit-down as “an all-you-can-eat buffet of batshit things that old white men with power and money say,” and I have to say– well put Deadspin.
Franco-Kasper denied the reality of climate change, ranted about how immigrants will “ruin” national pastimes, and praised the free-and-easy ways things were done under the old dictatorships of yore.
“There’s no proof,” he said of climate change. “We have snow, sometimes even a lot of it.” Who knew an old fart who manages a ski racing league could trump the rigorous, peer-reviewed climate science with a simple flick o’ the wrist. Checkmate, PhDs.
Not one to be cut short or fail to make proper use of his bully pulpit, now-outed gasbag Franco-Kasper had a few other learned comments to share with his unfortunate audience. Again, I’m relying on the accuracy of Deadspin and Google Translate translations here.
“It’s just the way that it is easier for us in dictatorships. From a business view, I say: I just want to go to dictatorships, I don’t want to fight with environmentalists anymore.“
Who among us don’t long for the Pol Pots and Benito Mussolinis of old? Maybe Franco-Kasper is on to something here? (By the way– is there any relation to a certain Spaniard well-known to history?) I’m not sure what the Swiss-born Franco-Kasper knows about living under a dictatorship, but then again facts are pesky things and should never get in the way of some good grandstanding.
Speaking of Qatar, he said:
“I do not want to go to a country, invest in skiing there, while the population starves, I draw the red line.“
Whew. Okay. So, even if we start by noting that Qatar is among the highest in the world in terms of GDP per capita, and in 2017 was called the richest country in the world– this is not an immediately insane comment. Migrant workers in the Gulf nation there to help prepare for the 2022 FIFA World Cup are undoubtedly mistreated (*see this long-running expose). But, he continues, “there’s too much sand on top of the snow.” Was this meant to be cheeky? Is this a funny that the man has made? Sick dude.
So I say the ball’s in your court, FIS. Or, to use a more relatable metaphor, there’s a madman barrelling down your local pistes, endangering the health and safety of all within earshot. What will you do?