For those people who explore the media wider afield than these shores for stories with an international dimension, the expression ‘everywhere except the British press’ is an all-too-common descriptor of the reach of certain important developments. It has merited another outing today over on EU Referendum.
‘Bias by omission’ is the phrase that generally explains these instances where the British public is kept in ignorance about developments they would be very interested in if the media deigned to report on them.
It is bias by omission that we are witnessing today as the British media – working in concert to keep their readers in the dark – turns a blind eye and deaf ear to the important story about the decision of the Swiss people, via a democratic referendum, to tighten up Switzerland’s asylum rules. You can read the story and coverage of the implications of the Swiss vote over on Richard’s blog.
This omission is noteworthy as the subject is one which provokes substantial debate in this country and focuses attention on the inability of the UK, as part of the EU, to control its own borders or asylum and immigration policies. Perhaps it is this, more than anything else, that the establishment and its media poodles want to deflect attention from. Any debate that shines a light on the negative and often harmful consequences of EU membership must not be aired, in case it prompts people to hanker for the UK to once again manage its own affairs. Further, any example of real (if imperfect) democracy in action, compared to the system of elected dictatorship that operates in this country, might have British serfs making demands to determine matters for themselves in a similar fashion. That of course would never do.
Following the howls of protests from the media about proposals for regulation of their ‘industry’ underpinned by statute threatening the so called freedom of the press, this example of propaganda through silence is as deafening as it is contemptible. Perhaps the only freedom that matters to the press is the ability to remain part of the establishment and act as its outrider, set apart from the people and operating against their interests, and occasionally throwing a bit of inconsequential red meat to the masses to give the impression of challenging the prevailing orthodoxy.
Politicians often butter up the media by repeating the mantra that we have the best and most effective press in the world, which challenges, probes and investigates before reporting fearlessly. The evidence, such as this today, shows what utter bollocks that idiotic claim is. Perhaps what they really mean is that the British press is the most craven and compliant.
Either way, this latest example of bias reinforces that the British people cannot trust the British media to be fair and impartial. It is not anything of the sort, not even remotely. Our press is not of the people for the people, it is the political class’ bulwark against the people. The British media is not being useless when its collectively fails to report important stories in this way, it is simply being complicit in furthering the agenda of the political class by working to keep people in ignorance and maintaining the establishment’s grip on us. It is on their side, not ours.