IT IS a wonder we have survived to the month of October 2022, in the year of our Lord. If you had listened to the media for the last five years you would have given up ages ago. As you know, I try to limit my media intake but no one is completely immune to it.
I think it all started with Brexit. The little people had the temerity to vote against the media and political establishment, despite Project Fear. This was followed by months and months of wall-to-wall hysteria about how terrible everything was going to be post-Brexit.
Obviously, the election of Trump across the Atlantic shortly thereafter just compounded matters for the media establishment; they felt they were losing their grip on power and their influence over the public. (To this day there is a Trump-shaped hole in many hearts; secretly they would quite like him back. Opposing Trump gave meaning to their lives.)
Covid changed everything. The arrival of that killer disease with a near 100 per cent survival rate, where the mean age of death was over the mean age of death in normal times, gave the media licence to roll out the fear porn, and they haven’t been put back in their box since.
Covid changed the game – the influence of the mainstream media had been waning up to then. Covid and the horrific lockdown offered them a route back. The government and the media, usually at loggerheads especially when it is a Tory government, united to terrify the public in the name of public health. No lie was too great to be told, no liberty too small to be restricted.
Instead of holding the government to account, the media slavishly backed them (unless the lockdown wasn’t strict enough). The media were actually paid by the taxpayer to run ads scaring the living daylights out of the taxpayer. Their power, their ruthlessness and their willingness to roll out the hysterics only increased. The public, until then growing hostile to the liberal media, suddenly trusted anything they said.
Then came the Russian invasion of Ukraine, which was at least a serious story all the serious journalists could get their hands on. So, the great and the good whipped off their face masks (which had miraculously saved then from Covid) to don the Press flak jacket and head east, where they could risk their lives against the Ruskis. Even I tuned into this one, as no one can ignore a war on their doorsteps. It was clear from the beginning that no negotiation with Putin was to be tolerated and if thousands of Europeans or Brits were going to freeze to death over the winter, then so be it.
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