Journalism and the Corona Virus

It is really difficult to find out exactly what is going on with the corona virus pandemic. I always hope that journalists are able to tell us what is actually happening, and what has happened around the world; that, after all, is what news is about. Unfortunately, journalists concentrate on asking ministers and officials to make predictions and speculate about the future, and having found out (rightly so) that no predictions are possible in the present circumstances, the journalists make predictions and speculations themselves, often by interviewing other journalists.

This is not news; this mere lazy prophecy, a pointless and an annoying undertaking when passed off as news by those too full of self-importance to make proper enquiries.  It ill serves the populace.

One journalist, Mr Robert Peston, suggested at a recent briefing that Public Health England was dragging its feet in approving a new antibody test at one of these briefings. The question implied that PHE was dragging its feet, and denials that it was not dragging its feet simply allow the libel to be repeated. Mr Peston should know better. The antibody test has to be carefully and properly tested to make sure it is fit for its intended purpose. I would imagine that those testing the antibody test are working much harder and much longer hours and for much less pay than Mr Peston.

What should be investigated by journalists instead of wasting ministers and officials’ time asking by foolish questions at daily briefings? At the time of writing, China claims that only 3,335 people have died as a result of corona virus cases. Perhaps this figure is worth investigating, especially when the UK has recorded 7,097 deaths.

The Electorate Has Spoken: “Democracy is Important”

The winner of political arguments in democracies is decided not by those who argue but the voters. The electorate has spoken and has definitively decided which side won the argument.

Despite this, journalists continue their mindless and boring speculation on what will happen next. In fact the predictions of the various BBC “political editors” have been a bit like the horoscope in a popular rag – all things to all people and anything could happen. The journalists will now (for a while anyway) embark upon sucking up to the politicians that they in the course of the election treated rudely and called liars.

The journalists fail to understand that the electorate is not stupid but really extremely perceptive – more perceptive than the political commentators and politicians give credit for. It perceived by the majority of the electorate great damage by not “getting Brexit done” was being inflicted on our democracy and according the majority voted to get Brexit done because the majority deemed democracy more important than prosperity.

The majority were right. I think that the important thing about democracy is that in the world today the majority of people in any nation can never be prosperous if the nation is not democratic, because democracy does create conditions for prosperity. Tyrants, dictators and democratically installed rulers of whatever political persuasion always end up impoverishing the majority of the people in the nation they rule.

The case for Brexit is simple: the European Union is not genuinely democratic; the real decisions are made by un-elected bureaucrats and the people of the EU have no real say in the direction that the EU is to travel and the policies it should adopt. In the United Kingdom the majority of the people perceived this and voted for Brexit. They understood that in the short term there will be loss of jobs, perhaps a loss of some prosperity, but in the long term democracy will bring prosperity and if it cannot be found in the EU then the UK is better off outside the EU. Staying in a nation (the EU is attempting to be a nation) that does not have real democracy will inevitably result in prosperity moving from those less well off to the large corporations and to the politicians.

Clever, this electorate.

Such Courage but…

There has been a lot of news about journalists being killed recently. Some of them have been killed while attempting to report events in Syria  and this is where the media turns in upon itself with great introspection. It seems that everyone who died while trying to bring us news was a brave saint. Of course a handful of journalists have died but even greater numbers of Syrians have died, some of whom have lost their lives trying to help journalists. .

This part of the news seems to have been brushed aside; what has happened to journalists of a few famous instittions has become the story, and when journalists become the story we cannot be sure that the news we recieve from them is accurate. and that is the difference between news and propaganda,