It is 25 years since the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre was awarded the editor’s chair at the Daily Mail, a quarter-century of breakfast tables being served up their daily diet of fear, loathing, hatred, bullying, aggression, bigotry, sexism, misogyny, borderline racism, homophobia, Europhobia, Islamophobia, and downright spite. 25 years of having the country’s political discourse coarsened, in conjunction with the Murdoch mafiosi.
Of course the f***ing PM does what I say, c***
For many who have been on the receiving end of the viciousness of Dacre’s daily blast of unpleasantness, the idea of celebration is totally out of the question. Those well-off enough to take the Dacre doggies to the cleaners will have the satisfaction of their day in court, or near enough to court to cause the Mail to settle and say sorry. The little people, in contrast, will have no more than a brush-off from the PCC or IPSO to console them.
So on which side of this chasm dividing the smug establishment from the so-called “Just about managings” does our Prime Minister position herself? As if you need to ask: Theresa May last night showed her adoring electorate how little she really cares about them, as she and husband Philip rocked up at Stationers’ Hall in the City of London to attend a reassuringly upmarket banquet to celebrate Dacre’s own personal Silver Jubilee.
Her Government may be on the ropes, rocked by the departure of dead cat slinger supreme Michael Fallon (and his wandering hands) followed by the “resignation” of International Development minister Priti Patel over her inventing foreign policy on the fly, with others looking vulnerable (hello Bozza and anyone involved in the Brexit process), but Ms May can be sure of one voice backing her all the way.
Yes, the Vagina Monologue still supports the Empress Treeza, still harbours his creepy schoolboy crush on the PM. And with the Daily Mail (plus, by implication, the Mail on Sunday and Metro free sheet) on board, she has the UK’s foremost propaganda and misinformation machine in her pocket. Dacre will direct his hacks and pundits to shore up her laughing stock of a Government and all will be well. For now.
While victims of press abuse get nothing, Paul Dacre is awarded one-on-one dinners at 10 Downing Street. As the Guardian revealed earlier this year, “Paul Dacre was only media figure to get hospitality from PM in her first six months”. Rowena Mason’s article from March added “The dinner in October underlines the closeness of the Daily Mail to the prime minister, who hired the newspaper’s political editor, James Slack, to be her spokesman last year”. The PM and the Mail in dangerous lockstep.
And there she was again last night, the faithful friend, as Robert Peston observed: “After her hideous day, the prime minister arrives tonight for a dinner with friends - a banquet at Stationers’ Hall in the City to celebrate Paul Dacre’s 25 years as Daily Mail editor”. It doesn’t do for a PM to be friends with the boot boys of the Fourth Estate.