The campaign by former Screws and Daily Mirror editor Piers Morgan to bask in the glory of having secured an interview with Combover Crybaby Donald Trump has, sadly, progressed not necessarily to his advantage, especially since that interview was revealed to be lame in the extreme. So The Great Man has been reduced to fighting a rearguard social media action, in which he has also, predictably, come off second best.
John Simpson - posing problems for secretive régimes
This has involved not only fighting off criticism, but going looking for it, as veteran BBC correspondent John Simpson discovered after he Tweeted “The art of the political interview, Piers, is to push your interviewee hard - not let them spout self-evident tosh. That's just showbiz”. He did not tag Morgan in his Tweet. But Piers was out there watching - or perhaps he had a chap to do that sort of thing for him.
Piers Morgan - just posing
And this meant only one thing: the deployment of sneering and arrogant abuse, the social media equivalent of him shouting down an interviewee on Good Morning Britain. “The BBC led on revelations from my interview all Friday morning, and Andrew Marr said yesterday it had made real news. So it would appear you’re the one spouting tosh, you pompous old prune”. No, Simpson didn’t want to look over there.
So Marr told him he ranked as high as any in Rome? Well, maybe not. And Simpson was nothing if not candid, responding gently “Pompous, probably. Old, undeniably. Prune, quite possibly. But I don’t enjoy watching spineless political interviews”. Spineless was, if anything, an understatement. But Morgan could not let that pass unchallenged. So it was on to the next weapon available to him: lying. But aggressively.
“You once claimed live on air that the BBC (you!) had liberated Kabul, you egotistical charlatan. So please spare me the journalism lectures”. R-i-i-i-ight. A word in your shell-like, Piers. One, Simpson did not make that claim. And two, your calling “egotistical charlatan” on anyone else is Projection with a very large capital P.
I’ll go further: John Simpson has, in his long and distinguished career in proper journalism, been hunted down by the armed forces of countries hostile to his presence, dodged bullets in Tiananmen Square, been expelled from Iraq, travelled with the Ayatollah Khomeni to report first hand on the Iranian Revolution, and been fired on by a US warplane in an incident where one of his colleagues was killed.
Piers Morgan, on the other hand, forged his way in journalism by outing gay men under such creative titles as “The Poofters Of Pop”. He showed he has no sense of humour by coming over all spiteful after having the piss taken out of him on Have I Got News For You, and putting a tail on Ian Hislop. He still hasn’t given a convincing explanation of why he didn’t know the Mirror was hacking phones. And he’s turned Good Morning Britain into a shout-fest, just to mask his inability to do basic research and debate coherently.
John Simpson has, in just two moderately insouciant Tweets, put The Great Man in his place. The empty fury of Piers Morgan proves it, as does the direct conclusion of Emma Kennedy: “Can you imagine Emily Maitlis endlessly retweeting obsequious praise for an interview she’s done? No. Neither can I" . When you’re in a hole, and all that.