Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Chris Addison wields the sword of Truth on HIGNIFY

Journalists are the Kings of Information, interpreting the world for we ignorant peasants who know nothing.  They process through the streets, basking in readerships measured in tens of thousands, clad in the gorgeous raiment of Truth.

I have just finished watching Have I Got News For You, the one with Martin Clunes and an Express journalist and Chris Addison. Chris majored on the inability of political journalists to grasp that this is a coalition Government, which means that two different parties are included. The journalists' underlying question since the election has been "But you are from different parties aren't you?" Which is a totally inane question, because it is perfectly obvious to all that they are from different parties. 

Anyway, he got loads of applause, and a lot of approval on Twitter. Well, quite a lot. For me, it was a huge relief to hear someone else criticising journalism.   If you the need to look at 25 blog postings by yours truly touching on journalism, click here.

Of all the professions, journalism is the least criticised. Doctors are always in the news for things that we got wrong, second only to politicians. Vicars and priests get the treatment, rightly. Cheating business men occasionally hit the news. Even judges are sometimes given a telling off. There was one, I remember anyway, one in my lifetime. Hand up skirt if memory serves.

Why, even organised criminals sometimes get taken to court and reported on.

But when do you ever read of a journalist doing something wrong. Like an editor? They never get criticised. Never. OK, once or twice Mr Clever Dick Anonymous Commentator, but not in proportion to their numbers and the number of mistakes they make. 

So Chris Addison may or may not be The Man, but he certainly is the little boy who said "The King isn't wearing any clothes!"


Depressed beyond tablets said...

I disagree. The journalists are not going anywhere far enough in pointing out the hipocrisy and cant we are now getting from the lying bastard Lib Dems who two weeks ago were telling me all these policies would be a very bad thing. Paxman tore into Laws the other night and he had nowhere to go and just kept ducking the fact that he was implementing policy that while he stood for election to our parliament, he was saying was extremely dangerous. I don't want my Chief sec. to the Treasury doing things with the nation's (i.e. MY) cash that he thinks is reckless and a very bad idea. Do YOU? I mean, how fucked up is that?

Is this what the Green Party is all about?

DocRichard said...

You say you disagree, but what are you disagreeing with exactly? Chris and I are saying that journalism is failing in its task of elucidating what is going on. Are you agreeing with the proposition that journalists are behaving impeccably all the time? I hope not. Sure, there are questions to be put to Government, relating to actual policies. The question is, how do we cut the deficit without plunging the economy back into recession? Will the Government tax the rich, close the tax loopholes, cancel Trident (or at least bring it back to port), cancel the Eurofighter, &c? See here.
Instead, they are harping incessantly on the divergence between what they said in opposition about each other, and what they say now they are in coalition. That point was well made in the Rose Garden, when the q about Dave's favourite joke was "Nick Clegg". Got a laugh. No longer has the element of surprise.
Interviewers should be testing the effects of the policies. Instead, they are still going for the cheap points. They prefer form to content.
OK, you disagree absolutely, because my criticism of journalism seemed absolute. They do not get everything wrong. But they need criticism, because anyone who escapes ends up as a total idiot. Chris Addison was brave to criticise journalists. He will probably pay for it.
In the 80s I tried my darndest to get the media to talk to the Green Party. Now I don't care about them, because I can get the message out here. In a tiny way, but I probably reach more people through a daily, though tiny (~100) readership, than by getting 3 minutes of broadcasting every 6 months or so.
You may still disagree, but I still think that the media needs to take a long cool look at what it thinks it is doing.

And no, this blog does not represent Green Party policy.

John said...

I saw some of that show too Richard, and must say I was impressed with Chris Addison. We all know what journalists are like, so it was good to see someone else dishing out the same to them for a change. I just wonder though, it his comments will now make him a marked man? A pity one of Murdochs or the mail's minions, wasn't on the receiving end.

I think DBT is confusing the few decent journalists out there, to the rest of the pack. I could write a book on the contempt and anger I feel towards the deluded monsters, who daily fill their rags with the most vile garbage under the sun.

By the way, I coudldn't vote Green, because no one wanted from the Greens wished to stand here, although someone did offer to put up the £500 fee needed.

DocRichard said...

Hi John
Like you, I worry that Chris Addison will be a marked man. Yes, there are good journalists, and fair play to them. But the eye of Rupert Mordorch has a malign influence. Some of his Fox News shock jocks are deeply worrying.

Sorry you couldn't vote Green. Neither could I, through my own fault.

I see you are into compost. My Humanure heap has just begun to go thermophilic, 2 weeks after starting. I've never had a compost go thermophilic before, not in 25 years of composting.

Adrian Windisch said...

Very good points Richard. I can think of a couple of examples of jouros getting it. Andy Coulson and the phone bugging. New York Times reporter Jayson Blair got caught making up stories.

Adrian Windisch said...

Or read the private eye.

Depressed beyond tablets said...

Hi Guys,

yes, you're correct. I wasn't conflating Richard Littlejohn with respected journalists such as Greg Palast and John Pilger etc. I was only addressing the issue of the coalition. Of course they won't tax the rich though, etc. And I have no problem voting Green.

Humanure? Sounds lovely Doc. Mind you, my socks went thermophilic last summer, with little effort at all.

Keep up the good work

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DocRichard said...

DBT - You sound a bit better already. Good. Please do not think I like this Govt. It is just that my expectations, after NuLabour, are so low that any day that passes without the UK declaring war on someone I wee as a success.

Adrian - Yes, Andy Coulson got it, but he also got away with it. And yes, Private Eye is required reading, but it is hidden away from the mainstream. They ought to put the Editor of Private Eye on telly once a week, say on a topical news show. Hang on ... oh. They have. I thought Ian Hislop was off form last week though. Maybe he has a body double.

DocRichard said...

HaOG I will give it a look, but right now I have to get busy with the wallpaper table. I may be gone some time...

DocRichard said...

Haog, Adrian is a blogger, you can ask him.

DocRichard said...

that wee should have been see