Quote of the day 27th April 2018: "The madness of Lord Adonis"

"In the past weeks, Adonis has launched an assault on the BBC, which with a few tweaks the Daily Mail could run. He has denounced theBrexit Broadcasting Corporationin the same derisive voice old Tories once denounced theBolshevik Broadcasting Corporation”.

"It is important to get the easy explanations for disappointed Remainers’ anger at the BBC out of the way. The simplest is that Lord Adonis and other Labour figures are trying to divert opponents of Brexit from the failure of the opposition to oppose.

"A second and to my mind compelling argument is that Lord Adonis has gone mad. Yet if he has, many others have gone off their rockers with him. In my experience, the belief that the BBC failed to do its job is everywhere in liberal Remainer circles.

"Every successful political movement now targets journalists in general and the BBC in particular. Even politicians who affect to oppose Donald Trump imitate his methods.

"Jeremy Corbyn and his circle have so inflamed their supporters against the BBC’s supposed right-wing bias that the political editor of the BBC needed bodyguards to escort her to the Labour Party conference. The Tory Right and the Tory press insist that, on the contrary, left-wing bias has corrupted it.

"Scottish nationalists persuaded their supporters to march on the offices of BBC Scotland to protest against supposed unionist bias.

"Now the supposedly sane voices of the centre have joined the deranged chorus. All modern movements have learned the advantage of attacking the media. The tactic binds your tribe to you and gives them an excuse as they sit around the campfire nursing their wounds. It’s not their fault they lost. It’s the fault of the broadcasters.

"The tribe, whether it be left, right, unionist, nationalist or centre, is not only comforted, it is taught to ignore hard facts that might cause nagging doubts. The position of Jeremy Corbyn, Boris Johnson, Nicola Sturgeon or Andrew Adonis is strengthened if they can convince their followers that bad news is fake news: the lies of a conspiracy of sinister broadcasters.

"With a mixture of cynicism and fanaticism a growing number of politicians have convinced themselves and their activists that they are the victims of a media plot."


(Nick Cohen, who is a progressive and a Remain voter but has an ability rare among those on all parts of the political spectrum to see blindingly obvious but inconvenient facts, takes aim at hardline remainers such as Andrew Adonis in a Standpoint article called "The Madness of Lord Adonis" which you can read in full here.)

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