This Swiss guy is named Sepp Blatter. He somewhat stereotypically got his start at a watch company, and then turned his sights to running a corrupt sports nonprofit named FIFA that sold a giant soccer tournament that only happens once every four years, but involves the entire world. He also had a stint as head of the World Society of Friends of Suspenders, an organization that advocated for women to stop wearing tights and go back to stockings and suspenders.
The tournament (and a few others sponsored by the soccer organization) are popular enough to suck in money from everyone and everything imaginable: shoe companies, airlines, sports beverages empires, possibly evil giant Russian gas conglomerates, and television networks small and large. The Swiss guy made it all fantastically profitable at little cost to the soccer organization, often by getting host countries to build and run most everything for them. He made money.
The Swiss guy made a lot of money. He made a million dollars a year by his own accounts, though that number is believed to be much, much higher in reality. He made enough money to fund a feature-length movie about this organization, and to pay Tim Roth to play the corrupt Swiss guy despite bearing no resemblance to him whatsoever. He paid out bribes to maintain power, exacted bribes from those sports companies and countries desperate to host that huge tournament, and used all that solidarity and momentum to win elections, build bigger tournaments, and construct other things like a giant scary meeting room that looks exactly like the war room in Dr. Strangelove.
According to South African press reports, Sepp Blatter, the FIFA president, will sleep at the Michelangelo Towers with his own red-carpeted private entrance to a spacious office, an entourage of five bodyguards, an African-themed en-suite bathroom and a personalized mini-bar stocked with South African wine and ice cubes made from bottled Evian water from France.
He also acquired many of the immunities of power one can only get at the pinnacle of the sports-industrial complex. He said that women soccer players should wear tighter shorts to increase the popularity of the game, and dismissed claims of racism on the field by suggesting that it did not exist, but that if it did then a handshake could make it all go away. The Swiss guy, it was rumored, even believes that he should receive a Nobel Peace Prize for his services to humanity.
It goes on really well until someone gets very, very mad.
Correction: It goes well until a former United States President gets mad about one of those giant tournaments. The Swiss guy gives the giant tournament to a tiny desert nation named Qatar, which despite being tiny, infernally hot, not a traditional soccer power in any sense of the word, and covered in sand, is otherwise perfect for a giant tournament. They also have an unfortunately high death rate when it comes to their foreign workers building all those proposed tournament venues and accompanying infrastructure. This nation's government also tend to ignore the most basic needs of the workers and treat them as indentured servants.
One of those countries not in the running was the United States, and when the former American President hears this he reportedly breaks a mirror.*
*The American President got so mad he ... well, his foundation still recently took somewhere between $250,000 and $500,000 from the winning country. Politics is weird so let's just keep it moving here.
This all happened! And so did this: The aggrieved Americans begin a large and dedicated federal criminal investigation of the giant soccer organization using weird laws that allow them to basically arrest whomever they want as long as there is some money crossing American lines in an undeclared and untaxable way.
A bunch of lawyers working out of Brooklyn (led by the eventual current Attorney General of the United States) begin to pull away the layers and uncover the following people, who I swear are all real and somehow richer than all of us.
First, the money led to a 400 pound man nicknamed "Mr. Ten Percent" who liked to carry a parrot on his shoulder, keep his cats in their own luxury apartment in Trump Tower, and funnel money from the soccer organization through a system of shadowy, untaxable channels. He also liked to get his picture taken with Vladimir Putin and charge his employer's expenses to his personal card. Like, $26 million of expenses over seven years of employment. Did we mention his ex-wife kidnapped the parrot at one point, and then trained the parrot to berate him by screaming "YOU'RE A CHUMP" at him during meetings? Or that he was arrested cruising down a New York street on a mobility scooter by the feds? Or that he turned informant for the Americans, and carried a bugged keychain into the soccer organization's meetings? We should mention all of that.
Second, once the members of the soccer organization were observed doing enough to nail them for global racketeering, they were arrested en masse in a Swiss hotel staked out by cops described as looking like "friendly-faced Swiss hipsters" who drove the arrested away in a Nissan Leaf? And that one of them who wasn't there, a guy from Trinidad and Tobago named Jack Warner, told TV reporters that authorities "know where to find me" if they wanted to arrest him? And that they did, and arrested him and put him in a jail for a night before he made bail, and then defended himself in a video using an article from The Onion he may have believed was real?
Third: did we mention this guy's sons may have been the ones who informed on him? And that under pressure, every single one of these people appears to be wilting like an unstarched shirt on a hot summer's day?
Fourth: The giant corrupt soccer mafia-corp-thing may not have been very good at hiding its tracks, and in fact left a paper trail of those bribes:
BOMBSHELL: Letter from South Africa FA to FIFA instructing $10m payment to Warner WAS addressed to Jerome Valcke pic.twitter.com/b0yKBPRAcA— Martyn Ziegler (@martynziegler) June 2, 2015
Those named in this letter insist this was a $10 million payment given out of the kindness and goodwill of their hearts.
Then the corrupt Swiss guy, who somehow managed to keep every last one of these plates spinning and run a global sports empire off the back of what appear to be some of the most bumbling lackeys in the history of bumbling lackeys, was re-elected as head of the giant evil corrupt soccer octopus four days ago. "I am the President of everybody," he said in celebration. Four days later, he resigned.
This is the worst, least believable script you have ever read, and life wrote every word of it.
SB Nation presents: FIFA's ridiculous corruption press release explained