I remember the whole process of selecting a host city for Australia’s last International convention. The Australian Bethel played the NSW government against the Victorian. It was so similar to choosing an Olympic city and the big boys from bethel knew how to play the game. Each city wined n dined and showed off their facilities to the bethel delegates and both offered cash rebates based upon delegate revenue estimates from hotel bookings and visitor spending dollars.
(Keep in mind hosting conventions/expos is big business down under for the hospitality industry)
The end result was that Sydney won with an offer too good to refuse. Homebush stadium was offered for next to nothing, the NSW government offered a certain amount of free hotel rooms and airfares from New York for free, as well as a big fat cash rebate.
In return the society offered to run a 6 page tourism advertisement for Sydney, check it out in the 1999 Awake July 8 pages 14-19.
The article has nothing to do with extolling Jehovah’s virtues or of his hope for a future, but is rather a blatant tourism advertisement, it even ended with the most known Australian Tourism commercial when Paul Hogan said “ we might even put another shrimp on the barbecue for you!”
I couldn’t believe back then the blatant commercial aspect of that convention and of how the wtbt$ were not keeping separate from the world but rather using it to the full, though its followers are instructed to keep separate.
Just when I thought it couldn’t get any more blatant...........
South Korea hosted an International convention last year, same deals done between the bethel boys and South Korean government. This time however, all delegates and attendees were offered handy travel bags with tourist maps of Seoul, handy travel tips, local phrase books and things to do and see whilst in Korea.
Nothing really wrong with that except that all the merchandise was stamped with the South Korean Travel Bureau logo and the WTBT$ logo. The South Koreans actually paid the Korean bethel to print all of the tourism merchandise with the government and societies logos.
How is that keeping separate? These large International conventions are a facade for making big $. The costs of hosting these events are never fully explained to those attending, just the regular announcements to make voluntary contributions. The amount of free hotel rooms and airfares offered or the financial rebates offered by the hosting city are never made available to the rank and file. And these free hotel rooms are often on sold for a price to “approved” delegates from overseas.
Go back in the old w/t and awakes and see how many host cities/countries had tourism articles published only to host an international convention in the next 6-12 months.
And they accuse Christendom of riding the commercial system like a harlot.....