Maria Sharapova failed a drug test at the Australian Open.
The world’s highest-paid female athlete admitted she had tested positive for the recently banned drug meldonium. The drug, which she had been taking legally for 10 years, was banned, effective 1 January 2016. The star admitted receiving correspondence from WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) detailing the changes to the list on December 22, but she “didn’t read” the contents.
Ignoring the email has probably cost her her career. Her sponsors (Porsche, Nike, Swiss watchmaker TAG Heuer) have abandoned her, and it could possibly cost her more than $100 million.
It is interesting that our society is so hard on top athletes, yet so lenient on politicians thieving the system. Why are we so wishy-washy?
If we are able to crack down on a sports cheats, why not do the same to politicians.
What if we applied the “Sharipova Standard” to politicians?
Lord mayor Robert Doyle of Melbourne used a publicly-funded credit card for $28,000 of personal expenses since 2012. He got mixed up over pin numbers (like Maria did).
The Sharipova Penalty: Sack Doyle from the Melbourne City Council. All pension and privileges normally associated with mayor to be retracted, and Doyle to be banned from Melbourne City events for 4 years.
Minister Bronwyn Bishop chartered a helicopter for an 80-kilometre flight from Melbourne to a golf course near Geelong to make a splash at a Liberal Party function. The trip cost $5,227.27. Mrs Bishop also spent more than $88,000 on a 15-day official visit to Europe while she was running for the presidency of the Geneva-based Inter-Parliamentary Union. Fails “pub” test.
The Sharipova Penalty: Withdraw Mrs Bishop’s potential annual $255,000 retirement package for 4 years. This will save tax payers approximately $1 million while she survives on $384/week for the four years.
In 2013 it was confirmed that Former Prime Minister Mr Abbott had traveled to Sophie Mirabella’s 2006 wedding on a tax-paid ticket. After facing media’s questions he quickly repaid the $1095. Sorry too late.
The Sharipova Penalty: When Mr Abbott retires, all free tax-paid first class travel to be withdrawn for 2 years.