The right-leaning press does not like Channel 4 News. The broadcaster’s flagship offering is a regular target for disaffected editors and pundits who see its presenters’ independence and commitment to speak truth to power as too radical and - by their sad definition of how the world is ordered - left-wing. And a special place in their pantheon of hatred is reserved for the programme’s main presenter Jon Snow.
Snow is unpredictable, probing, persistent, and utterly devoid of pretence. There will be no deference to anyone, whether Government ministers, businessmen, lobbyists, hacks, pundits, lawyers, union leaders or anyone otherwise appealing to authority. He was also at last weekend’s Glastonbury Festival, and his visit is now being used in a cheap and opportunist attempt to get Channel 4 to dispense with his services.
This singularly pathetic slice of Ron Hopeful behaviour has, to no surprise at all, emerged from the perpetually thirsty Paul Staines and his rabble at the Guido Fawkes blog, where apprentice sandwich monitor, oops, sorry, senior reporter Ross Kempsell has told readers “There’s Snow Such Thing As Impartiality” and based his “story” on a single source, which, to be fair, is one more source than much of the Fawkes oeuvre.
Ross Kempsell - claims to be a journalist. No, don't laugh
“Boss place that Glasto. Having a dance with Jon Snow and hearing him shout fuck the Tories is what dream[s] are made of” it reads. This is enough for Kempsell to declare Snow guilty as charged: “A Glasto reveller recounts their weekend with loud-socked Channel 4 News anchor Jon Snow. No one ever thought you were neutral, Jon”.
This is then followed by dismissing Snow’s own recollection: “Jon Snow gets in touch … ‘After a day at Glastonbury I can honestly say I have no recollection of what was chanted, sung or who I took over 1000 selfies with’ … Classic non-denial. He said it”. That’s right, a bunch of habitual liars who inhabit a borderline Fake News outfit call “liar” on the main presenter of TV’s most trusted evening news bulletin.
Kempsell is full enough of himself to then pretend that his phoney story is gathering momentum, which it is not. Under the claim “Story snowballing (geddit?!?)” he offers “Conservative MP Andrew Bridgen calls for Snow’s resignation … ‘I think it’s time Channel 4 told Jon Snow where to go’”. Er, Andrew Bridgen? The same Andrew Bridgen who’s always mithering about the BBC not presenting the news as he wants to hear it?
The same Andrew Bridgen who’s always there when the broadcasters need a rent-a-quote Europhobe? The Andrew Bridgen who claimed MPs were “getting poorer”? Who has slagged off the HS2 project from the word go, despite getting £2 million for his house in compensation from, er, HS2? And Channel 4 should do his bidding?
Ross Kempsell’s attack on Jon Snow and Channel 4 is going nowhere. Kempsell is labouring under the misapprehension that just because he managed to eavesdrop on Paul Mason in a Liverpool eatery, it somehow makes him a journalist. It does not.
The Fawkes blog already has Billy Liar on its books. Now it’s got Walter Mitty as well.