Away from the news headlines, our free and fearless press has been reading and inwardly digesting some less than favourable information of its own: year-on-year sales to February show that the decline of recent years is, if anything, gathering pace. The Murdoch Sun, which recently was selling more than 3 million copies a day, has finally fallen below the 1.5 million mark, an almost 8% fall. Its Sunday stablemate has declined by over 9%.
But it is the Daily Mail, and Mail on Sunday, which have suffered rather greater falls, with the Mail down 11% to under 1.3 million copies a day, and the MoS getting perilously close to the magic one million mark. The ability of the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre to connect with his target audience has finally departed; his hacks and pundits are left flailing for attention. And today’s front page shows the problem for all to see.
Who the f*** says I'm a useless c*** who's f***ing up a once great paper, c***?!?!?
“IS THIS THE TURNING OF THE TIDE?” thunders the headline. What is this about? Austerity? Brexit talks? Weather conditions? Wave power? The Mail’s campaign on plastic waste? Sadly, it is none of these, but a comment on an attempted takeover of GKN by a group of potential asset strippers. This is an important story, but is hardly something that the Mail’s readers will want to digest over breakfast. And it gets worse.
Appeasement, Guv? Issa big word, innit?
Also signposted on that front page is another rant by the Mail’s unfunny and tedious churnalist Richard Littlejohn, where the target is Jeremy Corbyn. Again. As it was in the run-up to the last General Election. That worked well, didn’t it?
Littlejohn, who is so in touch with the ordinary men and women who read the Mail that he is paid an obscene £800,000 a year and lives within a gated compound in North Vero Beach, Florida, pretends that Jezza would not have bothered with fighting the Nazis, had he been PM in 1940. It’s drivel. It also sees the Mail skating on very thin ice.
Suggesting that anyone else would have gone soft on Hitler is somewhere the Mail has no right to go: right up to the declaration of war in 1939, the Mail and its deluded proprietor Lord Rothermere were not just soft on Hitler, they were positively fawning over him.
Littlejohn sneers “Challenged about German military expansionism, the Prime Minister said Herr Hitler had every right to annex Poland, Czechoslovakia, France, the Low Countries and the Sudetenland, as a vital bulwark against Western aggression”, but his own paper, the Daily Mail, defended German annexation of the Sudatenland.
And what puts Littlejohn beyond the pale is when he snarks “Mr Corbyn has rejected out of hand widespread reports that millions of Jewish men, women and children across Europe are being rounded up by the Nazis. He said that was as absurd as trying to suggest that there was any anti-Semitism in the Labour Party”. Laugh? I thought I’d never start.
The Daily Mail was running anti-Semitic and pro-Nazi stories throughout the 1930s. It was the Mail that told its readers of “German Jews Pouring Into This Country”. Now its sick pundits are playing deflection in order to smear the Labour leader.
There is no more stark example of why the Mail is losing sales, readership, advertising revenue, credibility, and yes, influence. The world is not interested in the blustering of these sick, sneering, overpaid, out of touch bullies any more. Good thing too.