Thursday, September 28, 2006

Spinning to the end

This site is not just about ripping into The Daily Mail - it is about bad journalism everywhere, regardless of political persuasion, content of the article and who wrote it. Bad, sychophantic and lazy journalism is everywhere, from The Sun to The Times through to the Doctor Who Magazine. It is just that it is most likely to occur in The Daily Mail.

So just to reiterate that everyone is a viable target for The Daily Mail Tendency I though I would flag this humdinger of an article in The Guardian. And by humdinger I mean shameless pile of nauseatingly brown nosing wank. Just to clarify terminology.

They're talking about Blair's farewell speech, of course. As I have touched on elsewhere, I am not a big fan of Blair's conference appearance. The Guardian is. In fact, the way they eulogise the self serving bollocks that spewed from Tone's mouth, you would have thought that he was the second coming of Jesus rather than a crappy Prime Minister on his way out.

"Shining the bright beam of his oratory and intellect across Labour's decade in power..."

You mean the failing 40 watt bulb of his oratory and intellect, surely? And it is not a decade. It is nine years. Learn. To. Count.

"Tony Blair yesterday astounded his party with a speech that impressively illuminated New Labour's achievements while leaving its weaknesses and failures in the shadows."

Yes, well, he is a politician. It is an innovative politician who illuminates their failings whilst leaving their achievements in the shadows. Actually, scratch that. It is a fucking stupid politician who illuminates their failings whilst leaving their achievements in the shadows.

"...a speech that placed him in history but left no one doubting that his ambitions for change run deep into the future."

Yes, I am sure that a self-serving speech will place him in history. Much more so than the country grinding to a halt in the petrol crisis, mass animal slaughter in the foot and mouth crisis and hundreds of thousands dying in the Iraq War. Just like Eden is remembered for his speeches, and in no way for causing the Suez Crisis. And if his ambitions for change run deep into the future, why the bastard hell is he standing down?

"...but in its grandeur the prime minister's last conference address also managed to climb above the urgent question of who will succeed him."

That is no achievement when you think about it. No achievement at all. Finding out who will be our next Prime Minister and when is far more arsing important than shit-eating oratory from Bliar.

"He drew a blinding energy from his words but even more from the way he delivered them, a piece of theatre that ranked with his best: skilled, forceful and focused."

Theatre is fine in politics, as long as the politician is not just theatre. But "a piece of theatre" would be a great way to describe the Blair years, but not in the way The Guardian means it. Blair has been playing at being the politician for nine years. He hasn't actually achieved anything positive at all. In fact, we should just have employed Martin Sheen to play our Prime Minister for nine years. At least he would have been more convincing.

"He balanced emotion and performance with argument, distilling the logic of New Labour. "We defied conventional political wisdom and so changed it," he said."

The logic of New Labour is winning elections at any cost. And Blair's strategy - of running to the centre ground - is not defying conventional political wisdom. In fact it is supporting conventional wisdom. The strategy of running to the centre ground to win a majority has been seen before, with Eden, Macmillan, Wilson, Heath and Major. Gaitskell and Kinnock also tried but failed.

" he finished speaking in Manchester many delegates will have been thinking of what they are about to lose."

Yes, and they probably headed straight to the bar to celebrate the fact that they are going to lose a long streak of piss as Prime Minister whose only ability was to win elections - a skill that has now disappeared, according to the polls.

Looking at that article on their website, I can honestly say that the best bit of analysis comes from their first comment:

"The Guardian can thank itself for creating a story, reporting it, hyping it, milking it, squeezing it and pinching it, for every penny it wasn't worth in the first place."

Amen to that!


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