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Saturday 5 September 2020

Free Press - My Arse

Another school year, another session of Parliament - and the return to direct action by the people supporting Extinction Rebellion. This time it’s serious, as the BBC has reported: “Extinction Rebellion (XR) activists have delayed the distribution of several national newspapers after blocking access to three printing presses owned by Rupert Murdoch. More than 100 protesters targeted Newsprinters presses at Broxbourne in Hertfordshire, Knowsley in Merseyside, and near Motherwell, North Lanarkshire”.

Alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson did not have to wait for Rupe to call to know which way to jump. “A free press is vital in holding the government and other powerful institutions to account on issues critical for the future of our country, including the fight against climate change. It is completely unacceptable to seek to limit the public’s access to news in this way”. To which I call bullshit. The kind of free press acceptable to Bozo The Clown is the kind that does not hold his Government to account.

Nonetheless, ministers dutifully weighed in as they knew Murdoch would want. Matt Hancock was, sadly, one of them. “Totally outrageous that Extinction Rebellion are trying to suppress free speech by blockading newspapers. They must be dealt with by the full force of the law. Newspapers are already struggling - get out there & buy a paper to support the free press”. FREEZE PEACH! But only that of which Rupe approves.

Robert Jenrick also indulged this conceit. “A free press matters to all of us who value a free society. They mustn’t be silenced by an intolerant minority”. The only intolerant minority right now is the group of billionaires he’s defending. The Tory position was laughable.

It was also hypocritical, as Stella Creasy pointed out. “A free society requires the active protection not just of a free press but also an open democracy, human rights and an independent judiciary and legal system that keeps all honest. You can’t pick and choose which to defend, no matter when and how each make you uncomfortable”.

David Lammy was on the same page. “The free press is vital. So is the ability of the public to challenge the government when it breaks the law. If you think holding the government to account matters, scrap your attack on judicial review”. But let’s hear from someone who writes a newspaper column on a regular basis. Someone like … Owen Jones.

Most of the British press is owned by a tiny group of very wealthy moguls who treat newspapers as their playthings - newspapers which often act as the partisan praetorian guard of the government. Call that what you will, but it isn't a ‘free press’”.

Not going so well for the Tories, was it? Moreover, XR UK weren’t for backing down. “UK free press is as much a myth as the benevolence of Empire. If we are to cope with #ClimateCollapse we have to unlearn the toxic untruths manufactured by the [MSM] that keep us frightened & divided. 70% of our press controlled by 5 non-dom billionaires”.

Momentum were equally unimpressed. “Three companies dominate 83% of the UK's national newspaper market, promoting the interests of corporations and a wealthy elite. The biggest owner is billionaire right-wing press baron Rupert Murdoch. How is that a ‘free press’?” It isn’t. And the people at Media Lens were equally scathing.

Before anyone denounces this as an attack on the 'free press' - there is no free press. There is a billionaire-owned, profit-maximising, ad-dependent corporate press that has knowingly suppressed the truth of climate collapse and the need for action to protect corporate profits”. And James Felton had a reminder for Bozo.

The free press is vital in holding me to account, says man who banned the Mirror from his election bus and once hid from Good Morning Britain in a fridge”. It’s a “free press” to be defended to the hilt by the Tories - because it backs the Tories. Without its hard copy and online propaganda machine, Bozo would be in even worse trouble than he is now.

Call it a free press if you like, Tories. But don’t insult our intelligence. Because it isn’t.

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Simon said...

Another school year, another session of Parliament

One is the return of a bunch of immature playground bullies who still have much to learn and the other is children going back to school.

Anonymous said...

Yes it is, it's just no one reads reads the Graun. And the police response is pathetic, look at the difference between that and the heavy handed police respose to patriots attempting to stop illegal migrants entering the country.

Anonymous said...


You're making absolutely no sense again. You have just said that the concerns discussed in the article about the restricted ownership of the press are irrelevant because "no one reads reads [sic] the Graun". Since you have so obviously taken the red pill and can see the truth denied to the rest of us, take us through the logic of that argument.

And you'd like the police to take a more heavy-handed approach to protest? Whatever happened to your vociferous defence of Freeze Peach?

As has already been pointed out to you in another thread in which your arse was handed to you, those crossing the channel are not illegal immigrants. https://www.amnesty.org.uk/press-releases/uk-deploying-navy-prevent-people-seeking-asylum-would-be-unlawful-reckless-and?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=share&utm_content=news And Nazis are not patriots. You do know we fought a war against them?

Nigel Stapley said...

It's particularly nauseating when the government is bending all relevant rules and laws in order to send to permanent imprisonment in the US a man whose 'crime' was helping to reveal US war crimes.

Not that the government is alone in such collusion; nearly all of those wittering about 'the freedom of the press' have played their part in railroading Julian Assange. See this piece by Jonathan Cook: https://www.counterpunch.org/2020/09/04/journalists-have-paved-assanges-path-to-a-us-gulag/

grim northerner said...

It's really pretty simple, if you don't like brown people you are a patriot, and if you don't dislike brown people you are 'the real fascist', simple clad iron logic.

Anonymous said...

Kids get their info from the internet, Google controls that, worry about them shutting up voices that disagree with their world view.

Anonymous said...


Ah yes, the infamous left-wng bias of transnational capitalists who commodify their users and sell them as data while developing algorithms in their search engines that direct you to neo-Nazis. Are you sure you didn't take Domestos instead of the red pill?