The False Equivalence Express has made its inevitable connection with the Bad Faith Limited this morning, as the Brexit Party’s ban on Channel 4 News has seen one particularly clueless pundit with rather too much time on his hands open mouth and insert foot in no style at all. To no surprise, that pundit is the Mail on Sunday’s not even slightly celebrated blues artiste Whinging Dan Hodges.
He's desperate, Dan
Desperate Dan (for it is he) has seen the Farage Falange dabbling in good old-fashioned fascism and decided to try an awfully clever piece of whataboutery. Sadly, this was a campaign destined to develop not necessarily to his advantage, as he Tweeted “Just to be clear. All those people urging broadcasters to show solidarity with the C4 ban (which I have sympathy with). They believe all print media should show solidarity with the Sun over their football ban? No print media at Anfield or Goodison till the Sun reinstated, right?”
Did he just try and liken one of the most vicious, most deliberate and most dishonest excuses for journalism - which the Murdoch mafiosi stood by while others retracted, and a smear on an entire city the Sun maintained for years, bolstered by a welter of knocking copy alleging that anyone from Liverpool was criminally inclined and working the benefits system to their advantage - with a news organisation asking questions?
Looks like he did. After all, Hodges then doubled down. “Banning the Sun is fine because I don't like the Sun. Banning Channel 4 isn't because I like Channel 4. Attacking Nigel Farage is fine because I don't like Farage. Attacking Anna Soubry isn't because I like Soubry. (And vice-versa). It's insane. We either have rules, or we don’t”.
That False Equivalence Express is popular today, and no mistake. But only with Dan Hodges: others were not persuaded of The Great Man’s argument. “Could be wrong, but I don’t think Channel 4 have ever lied about football supporters pissing on dead bodies. That’s probably the reason why people don’t like the Sun” was typical.
Nathan Woodley was on the same page. “Channel 4 didn't lie and smear victims of a tragedy. They asked pertinent questions to someone running for election that should be open to financial scrutiny”. Another Tweeter asked “Walk us through how what Ch4 have done is equivalent to what the Sun did? Also, don't think Anfield or Goodison are standing for public office. You've got this one badly wrong Dan, back down and walk away”.
The Tweeter known as Brexitshambles mused “You can't appreciate the difference between the Sun being banned at Anfield and Goodison for printing, promoting and propagating lies and @Channel4News being banned for investigating and reporting the truth? Don't think you've thought that one through too well there fella”.
It got worse, as Jonathan Fisher figured out the true purpose of Hodges’ intervention: “This is just breathtakingly disingenuous, which I assume is exactly what you were aiming for. Congrats”. And the Tweeter using the handle @SpillerOfTea replied simply “Oh mate”.
That’s another clueless pundit not making friends and influencing people on Merseyside. All that money and Dan Hodges still can’t correctly identify reality.
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