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Blast It Home


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Press Distortion

The Press, sometimes likes to think of itself as the Fourth Estate, that's even funnier than the AA advertising itself as the fourth emergency service.

The medium becomes the mess-age

The messages get lost in the media, the medium becomes the message. Hence, honesty, validity and accuracy are devalued as the media creates images, brands, celebrities, and myths, and then employs armies of people to breathe life into these artificial creations, to spin, exaggerate and distort. And sometimes in cannibalistic fashion they eat their creation, like Jade Goody.

(If you've forgotten Jade already, Michael Gove hasn't, in March 2013 he told the Social Market Foundation that her lack of education inspired him to forge onward with his education reforms, i.e. private education for all.)

The media is an illusionist's box of tricks gone awry, where distortion is the currency and the masses acquire, like a ghoulish fetish, the personas of airbrushed and cosmetically enhanced super beings; the tabloid creations of slick-tongued ad-men and other sycophants, bottle-tanned androids, opinion spouters, and Piers Morgan.

Journalism, whatever that once meant, nolonger exists. Generally, newspapers today are a compilation of articles twalled from a pool supplied by international press agencies, a mishmash of survey data and unchecked statistics, the outpourings of opinion spouters and a constant stream of fanastic happenings like the morning sickness of a princess, who may have a child who ascends to the throne - in 80 years or so. Ah, something at last to look forward to.........

Kelvin MacKenzie

For the most part journalism requires only an ability to cut and paste someone else's handy work, no checking required, just ask the former editor of the Sun newspaper Kelvin MacKenzie and recall his lying coverage of the Hillsborough football tragedy. You might think that Mackenzie's disgraceful attack on Liverpool football supporters would cause him to disappear down the nearest rat hole never to be seen again.

Not Mackenzie, in December 2012, he popped out of his rat hole, to lambaste the North for leeching off of the South-East, suggesting that without the creative and hard-working strivers of London and the home counties, everywhere, North of Watford, would have a GDP the size of Ethiopia.

Well, the rat was wrong about the football fans at Hillsborough and he was wrong about the economy of the North. In fact, all those socialists up north would have an economy the size of Canada, poor old Ethiopia would be about 90 places down the league table.

He needs to get back in his rat hole before someone from Eddie Stobart runs him over. Plainly, Mackenzie is no journalist, he didn't check his facts before going to press about Hillsborough and he knows nothing about reading economic data but his behaviour typifies modern journalism.

The Threat To Our Way Of Life

Max Hastings, tabloid hack, opinion spouter, and sometimes historian, is concerned about the threat that Wikileaks poses for our very way of life. He protests, we simply can't have all this openness and honesty, we simply can't know everything there is to know. There must be some privacy; diplomats and politicians and generals and cranks must have their private moments to make decisions that affect citizens lives.

According to Max, the public has no right to know anything of the antics of toxic dumpers Trafigura, or indeed, climate scientists cooking the books, and Joe Public certainly has no right to be viewing video footage from a US Army Apache helicopter as the gunners' relish in the carnage they've caused - 15 innocent civilians lie dead and the lunatic on the end of the gun says "nice".

We certainly didn't need to know about all those expenses fiddling Westminster MPs. We don't need to know why papers relating to the death of Dr. David Kelly will be hidden for 70 years. And now, April 2012 we are told we will probably not be allowed to know any details about the decision making that led to the shooting of Mark Duggan.

The concealment of all these private moments are a part of our democratic way of life, indeed, concealment, deceit, sleaze and greed - these are the cornerstones of our politics, of state legitimacy.

If Wikileaks threatens this legitimacy then this can only be good that people like Blair and Bush, who's private moments have ended a million lives in Iraq and Afghanistan, are exposed as duplicitous ego-centric self-deceivers.

It might just be the case that what really worries the Max Hastings of this world is the decreasing need for citizens to have things interpreted for them by people like him. That as it may be, Max speaks to the core values of Conservativism: don't tell the peasants, you'll upset them.

Max Hastings, together with the likes of, Will Hutton and myriad others who write for the newspapers, for extra cash, challenge nothing and no one, all they want to do is tweak, to fine tune, not to manage the machine but to manage for it.

More private moments (2013)

Hastings will no doubt be toasting Barak Obama's jailing of private Bradley Manning 136 years for leaking the private moments of the US military and their duplicitous masters.

Will Hutton tells us: "The markets have issued a stark warning. The old common sense is killing the western economy and Britain's with it. We must now act to save ourselves." Fuck me, send for Bruce Willis. And pray, what action should we take? Will says, print some more money and insist on how it gets spent. Wait a minute, so the old common sense, that you can run the world's economy on debt, is past it's sell by date and Will wants to challenge this received wisdom by printing more funny money. Will was the founder of something called The Work Foundation, who after some amazing research discovered that 'happy workers are more productive' - outstanding.

And what's more, Will wants the politicians to recognise the 'interconnections' between the State and Capitalism. The State facilitates the money making machine, it also has to care for its casualties. The way Will tells it, the State and Capitalism are like partners in crime bound by a mutually beneficial relationship. Get it? We are all in this together.


Ferrets and Time Wasters

Damian Thompson is Editor of Telegraph Blogs and a leader writer for the Daily Telegraph. He was once described by The Church Times as a "blood-crazed ferret". We know this because Damian's 'by-line' tells us. We don't know why the Church Times are so concerned about ferrets but clearly Damian thinks his exciting of the religious community note worthy, it matters not. What matters is whether he has something useful to contribute on the sad state in which we currently find ourselves. He does not!

Damian turned his ire to Lefties and their sense of humour bypass in relation to manboy Jeremy Clarkson's remarks on the One Show, Clarkson said something about shooting strikers.

Damian's piece was titled: "Jeremy Clarkson ignites the hypocrisy of the Left ". Now, a good writer would tell us up front who it was on the Left that was having their hypocrisy ignited. Damian offered up Ricky Gervais and Jimmy Carr?

Sorry, we must have missed these two individuals talking about the transfer of ownership of the means of production to the working class. Carr and Gervais are players, travelling Wilburys, they speak for no one except their bank managers. Calling children with Down's syndrome 'mongs' doesn't make you edgy or lefty, it just makes you insensitive and you can't be shot for that.

Clearly, Damian's classical education has left him ill-prepared to follow the social change occurring right under his nose (not really much of a ferret). The Left doesn't exist anymore; the politics of left and right has been replaced by moods. The current mood is dark. In particular, time wasters like Damian and Jeremy Clarkson should look to their futures.

Supporting Clarkson makes no sense. Clarkson is also a Wilbury and his views matter about as much as discarded copies of the Daily Telegraph blown around by the wind.

People often puzzle over how we got to where we are, that is, a place where what people say and think is being dictated by anonymous agents. It's as if social practice is being shaped by vectors, viral spores that invade the private space of a persons understanding of the way the world is.... Damian Thompson is a spore, Max Hastings is a spore, Will Hutton is a spore.


The News of the World

The News of the World closed, July 2011, sacrificed to salvage News Corps bid to capture control of BSkyB; it didn't work.

The phone hacking scandal, that hastened the demise of the NOTW, left our leader 'Call Me Dave' all red in the face and flustered... cripes, he was heard to utter, and egads, expressing mild dismay and frustration... 'you know what this means' he told the Downing Street cat ' we are going to have to do something' and cripes again.... 'who's going to pay for all the free lunches now?'

So Dave, like a super hero, ordered up two inquires and culpable Met Police bosses resigned, i.e. Sir Paul Stephenson, John Yates and four others, and not a few took some extended leave - leaving it to others to do the job they were too useless to do.

The Leveson inquiry - an amnesiacs' convention

Following phone hacking revelations at the News of the World, the Leveson Inquiry was set up to look at the relationship between the press and the public, the press and the police, and the press and politicians.

This process has turned into an amnesiacs' convention, at which some very bright people pretend to know nothing, to have looked at things but not seen them, to have been given things and not know who gave them, to listen to others talking but not know who they were listening to.

Leveson's purpose is to make recommendations for a more effective policy and regulation that supports the integrity and freedom of the press while encouraging the highest ethical standards. And where, our small child might ask, is Leveson going to find the highest ethical standards. Remember the Seven Principles of Public Life that many of our politicians fail to live up to.

A genuinely free press would behave like a countervailing power, holding politicians and other deceivers to account, reporting events and interrogating the facts, not inventing and twisting the facts.

Note: The Telegraph published the details of MPs expenses but every newspaper had the opportunity to do so - a sample of the stolen disc was provided to most of the newspapers but they didn't have the guts to pay for and publish the the full story.