Another day, another welter of Europhobia from the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre and his obedient doggies at the Daily Mail, as the Vagina Monologue seeks to impose his casual bigotry towards anyone talking foreign - as well as any religion not meeting with his approval - on his readers, whether they like it or not. Such is Dacre’s dislike of Abroad that he has even left the Orlando LGBT nightclub massacre off the front page.
So what is their chosen lead story? As if you need to ask: “Secret plan to open our borders to 1.5m Turks: British diplomats admit it would be a 'risk' but tell ministers the move would be a 'symbolic gesture to Turkey’ … EU plan to give visa-free travel to 75m Turks could lead to UK giving same status to up to 1.5m 'special passport holders’ … EU officials quietly delaying publishing plans until after the UK's EU vote … They don't want to deter Britons from staying in the EU with the proposals” read the headlines.
But, as I pointed out yesterday, this “story”, which initially featured in the Sunday Times, is a crock of crap. What diplomats discuss in cables sent to London is no more than that: these are not Ministers, they are not decision-makers, and there is no plan to let anyone in, nor to “open the floodgates”. The only original element in the Mail story is that the ST’s figure of one million has had another 50% added on to it, to make it look more scary.
Plus the Mail gives houseroom to the serially dishonest Iain Duncan Cough: “In further signs of the increasing bitterness of the campaign, Mr Duncan Smith responded to Mr Cameron's remarks this morning by saying: 'This is a baseless threat. Experts have shown that leaving the EU - and introducing an Australian-style points system - would lead to a higher state pension”. No experts said that at all. Because he’s just making it up.
Daily Mail Comment, the voice of Dacre, or his representative on Earth, piles on the paranoia: “With ten days to go until the referendum, how much are David Cameron and our partners keeping back from voters about the EU’s plans for the future? The question is brought into sharp focus by yesterday’s leaks of British diplomats’ cables, discussing policies not intended to be publicly aired before the vote is safely out of the way”.
There’s more: “The unmistakable aim is to keep the electorate in the dark, so as to avoid frightening the horses before the country makes its decision … What a contemptuous way to treat voters in a mature democracy. And what a clear sign of the EU elite’s fear that if we knew the truth about its plans, we would want nothing to do with them”.
And that’s a most interesting angle, so interesting that it puts Dacre and his hacks in what Spike Milligan would have called A Very Difficult Position. After all, if the Mail’s readers knew that the editor of their paper owned a Scottish estate for which he had been trousering hundreds of thousands in EU farm subsidies - in other words, if they knew the truth about his plans - they too might want nothing to do with them.
Paul Dacre’s glasshouse is even more draughty this morning. No change there, then.