There'll be a hiatus for a bit, after this post. It's quite annoying in some ways, given that the blog has taken off a bit recently, and I've been enjoying it a lot. On the other hand, I'm on holiday for two weeks, and it's going to be ruddy great. So don't feel too sorry for me. Not that you were, anyway.
Without wanting to gush, though, I would just like to say thanks to everyone for coming along and reading this little nonsensical blog. I know you don't have to, and you're not doing me a favour or anything, but thanks anyway. I may just be an insignificant failed writer steeped in mediocrity, stuck in a one-trick universe of swearing at the media all day - the literary equivalent of those alkie tramps you see yelling at pigeons outside the library - but I do like it. I like it a lot. So I'll see you in a couple of weeks, then.
You won't miss me. There are many more marvellous blogs out there fighting the good fight, and here are just some of them.
Angry Mob looks at the public-sector stories the Mail won't bring you. Over at the other place, Mailwatch, I've talked about public sector pay and the Mail's attitudes. For some reason they consider the public sector (which includes everything from the BBC to the NHS, but most importantly anyone with a 'gold-plated' pension) to be bad and everything else to be good. Why might that be?
Angry Mob makes the point that the Mail's narrative on this subject is that everyone in the public sector is overpaid, overprotected and living it up while poor small businesses and private-sector workers (including Mail journos, let's not forget) are enduring tough times. That narrative is spoiled by stories of public sector cutbacks, the kind that are happening right across the country and in all areas (and as a commenter to my Mailwatch article right pointed out, there are some public sector workers such as soldiers being sent off to Afghanistan and elsewhere, who are largely forgotten about), so it will be interesting to see whether stories will be covered by the screamsheets. It's news, after all, but it doesn't fit the narrative. I think we know the answer.
To the Express now, and No Sleep Til Brooklands looks at another textbook screamsheet story - the 'flood' of immigrants. This time it's those pesky Poles who are apparently pouring back into the country, having left for a bit. Really? Well, apparently - and this is rather incredible - the Express appear not to have been entirely honest about the figures, and the story itself seems to be almost a straight lift from another article in January. Can you believe it? Oh, you can. Fine, but have a look anyway.
Five Chinese Crackers looks at the word 'NOW' being applied to stories, and what it means. In this particular case, it's the story of cultural sensitivities being applied to fire service uniforms (the pesky public sector again!) so that people of different religions can be comfortable in the service. OK... but why might the Mail only mention Muslim dress rules, and not Sikh ones, as if it's a measure that's been introduced only for Muslims? It's the same old agenda being wheeled out.
Tim at Bloggerheads has another story of cheap-shot lazy shit journalism in the Scottish press, but this time it's the Scottish Sun. A cancer patient has been writing about his experiences online, only for the Scottish Currant to come along and lift his story without asking him, take his quotes out of context, print it as if they've interviewed him, refuse to allow him the right of reply when he tried to comment on the story, then sheepishly offer a wodge of cash when he complained. Incredible? Sadly not. That's modern churnalism. If it's out there, nick it, and pretend you did it.
Feminazery is a new blog that's been started up this week, I think off the back of the Daily Mail Hating Feminazis From Hell group of Facebook. Go over there and have a look, as I'm sure there'll be plenty more good stuff over the coming weeks.
And finally to the protests yesterday. For months the police have been warning about riots. Politicians have grumbled about a possible 'summer of discontent'. The media have been hoping, almost saying "Come on Swampy, smash something up" - and finally, hooray, someone smashed something up. Sure, thousands of other people protested without smashing something up, but no, let's wheel out all the cliches, shall we? Ooh, they need a bath! Ooh, they don't even know what they're protesting about! Ooh, they're doing more harm than good! Ooh, they've done their cause a lot of damage! Ooh, the G20 are nice good people trying to fix the world and make lovely things happen, why are you complaining about it? And so on, and so on. I'm glad I'm leaving the country for a fortnight, so I can avoid the brunt of all this crap. But you need to read Justin, Septicisle, BenSix and Sunny for a bit of insight - more insight than you'll read in 95% of the national press this morning, anyway.
And with that, I'm off. But I'll be back.
- Links for Wednesday
- It’s because they work with sick people
- A few links and stuff
- Links 21/1/10
- Links for Sunday