It's less clear what was in it for Bernie Ecclestone. Money, I suppose. Money and blondes who are twice his height seem to be Bernie's ruling passions. Anyway, he too got it wrong. Having his zippy little machines buzzing round and round in their bubble while outside on the streets people were being gassed and baton charged and dragged away to torture chambers isn't turning out to be the best advertisement for his business. Also he got to be filmed saying things like, "We're just in it for the sport; it's nothing to do with us." His drivers and other underlings were filmed saying the same thing- like drones- thereby making it apparent that Big Sport- like Big Everything Else- is utterly without a moral dimension. Ecclestone is a cocky little bugger. Cocky is exactly the wrong note to strike in these particular circumstances.
I sometimes think we're at the beginning of something enormous. The cloud-capped towers of our current world order are beginning to go wispy and transparent at the edges. The spell is dissolving. The Lords of this Creation- of whom the Crown Prince of Bahrain and Bernie Ecclestone are low-ranking examples- don't fool us any more. I could, if I wanted, draw up a long long list of things that are not going their way. I don't think it's the Millennium or anything as grand or final as that, but I do think it's upheaval time- and the powerful- of all political stripes and none- all those who have benefited from things as they have been over the past two or three decades- need to be looking for archways to shelter in.