Well, if the VLM is so altruistic in its attitudes to charity fund raising, why does it charge so much for Golden Bonds, why not simply allocate on a deserving basis?
I think that the VLM making money out of charging charities is morally bankrupt, just my opinion, and I can't see any argument in its favour. If VLM need the money, why do they pay obscene amounts in appearance/prize money?
As you may tell, not a fan of VLM, but hypocritical enough to use it for my own ends, i.e. fund raising, just would never contemplate a Golden Bond entry.
The point you make in your second paragraph is actually a very good one, but I can't really be bothered to trawl through their accounts to find out whether they do anything specific with the gold and silver bond money. They'd probably say, if asked that it goes into all sorts of elements of the organisation, including its own charity, but I'm guessing on that. It's worth remembering, whatever the morality of charging for the bonds, that all fundraising costs money in some way - David Bedford reckoned in 2007 that the price of £300 for a gold bond brought in more than £2000 for a charity, which is a decent fundraising ratio. You have to remember it's about getting the name of the charity out there too, in which sense being 'in' the event is priceless.
London is what it is, a fun run for the fundraising masses. The elite and club championship side of it is still only there because it helps keep the profile up. If the could they'd do away win having to pay huge prize money to the ember and just keep all the funds for whatever cause they would rather spend it on. If folk can't be arsed to train to get a gfa spot then they don't really want to do it as a ember and therefore they still have the charity route to use if they fancy getting on the telly. It is what it is.
I'm not sure this is quite true, considering it's one of the strongest fields for a marathon ever this year...
In what way is it unhealthy financially? If I'm reading this thread right, most people's objection to the charity connection is that they think it's keeping 'real runners' out, or getting in the way of promoting fitness - that's a different debate.
Just on a slightly different tack - I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism a few years ago. It seemed to come on fairly suddenly - halfway through a run my energy levels would collapse and I would have to stop. Little white pills are my saviour! This sounds a bit different, but maybe if you can't find a way through fuel to get to the bottom of this, perhaps a blood test is in order...
Isn't there a thing called collective purpose in which everyone in a group of people that commits an offence can be charged, even if it's not clear who, for example, was giving someone a kicking and who was standing by and egging them on?
In this case, though, they don't know who was driving, nor was anyone 'egging' them on. It's worth remembering that one of the biggest miscarriages of justice in this country - the execution of Derek Bentley - was to do with 'common purpose'.