Thursday, 7 July 2016

Quotes of the Week: From Oh! What A Lovely Political Crisis for journalists to the media's failure in covering the Iraq War led to public distrust

Roy Greenslade on MediaGuardian"For journalists, has there ever been a better time to be alive? There is not enough airtime in news bulletins and enough space in newsprint to cover the post-Brexit political dramas."

Ben Wallace MP in the Daily Telegraph on Michael Gove: "When I was a government whip and Michael was the chief whip, the office leaked like a sieve. Important policy and personnel details made their way to the papers. Michael seems to have an emotional need to gossip, particularly when drink is taken, as it all too often seemed to be...UK citizens deserve to know that when they go to sleep at night their secrets and their nation’s secrets aren’t shared in the newspaper column of the prime minister’s wife the next day, or traded away with newspaper proprietors over fine wine."

Peter Preston in  The Observer: "Columnists tend to have bouncing egos. Columnists send indiscreet emails (true fruit of the Vine). Columnists like keeping their editor (maybe Dacre) sweet; or their publisher (maybe Murdoch) on board. Newspaper bosses are big cheeses in their lives – and therefore artificially revered, the elite’s elite. Columnists run other columnists down for a living, but they don’t run things for themselves. Columnists aren’t natural contenders for big organisational jobs."

Robert Hutton @RobDotHutton on Twitter: "Best thing about a columnist running the country would be that a new problem would be COMPLETELY SOLVED each week."

Rafael Behr in the Guardian: "Again, the remain side was taken aback by the effectiveness of this scorched-earth approach to evidence-based argument and by the media’s complicity – deliberate in the case of many newspapers, unwitting on the part of the BBC which was bound by impartiality rules to present the claims of both sides as equally valid. As one Cameron aide puts it: 'If anyone on the left had ever said the Bank of England was corrupt and shouldn’t have a view, they would be incinerated, but the BBC gave a free ride to the rubbishing of institutions'.”

Archent press release on its new pro-European "pop-up" newspaper The New European which launches this Friday for four weeks: "The New European is not aligned with old political divisions but with an enthusiasm and love for Europe; a new quality newspaper that gives voice to the values of the 48%. The New European will provide in-depth analysis of the Brexit process, its implications and progress as well as a celebration of European life and culture with contributions from some of the most respected journalists and opinion formers from the UK and Europe."

Business Insider: "Labour party leader Jeremy Corbyn accepted up to £20,000 for appearances on the Iranian state broadcast network Press TV — a channel that was banned in the UK for its part in filming the detention and torture of an Iranian journalist."

Nick Davies on leaving the Guardian after 40 years, as quoted by Press Gazette: “I’m retiring from journalism at the end of September just because I’m getting old and creaky and I want to do some other things with my life while I still can.”

Alastair Campbell in an email to The Sun's Kelvin MacKenzie: “Never mind buyer’s remorse, you should feel totally f***ing ashamed to have been for so long part of a giant propaganda machine which has helped the country make a potentially self-destructive decision that future generations will have to live with when you and I are long gone.“Murdoch has been a complete poison in our national life and you have helped so much. And because you are well sorted it will not hit you nearly as hard as those you and yours have persuaded to make the decision they did.
“But hey it’s all a bit of fun, eh? F*** off.”

Ian Burrell in the Independent"So much of the current public distrust in the media and its incestuous relationship with the political establishment can be traced back to its failures in covering the Iraq war. I remember picking up the London Evening Standard on 24 September 2002, and being gripped by the raw power of its splash: '45 minutes from attack'. Hours earlier in Parliament, Tony Blair had handed down his flawed tablet of stone, with its false claims of Saddam Hussein’s weaponry, and the media machine whirred into action, propelled by Alastair Campbell’s spin team."

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