The axis of unbelievable.
I am hitching a shameless ride in the vehicle of Mark Steyn's website at the moment. No, not his columns, for once- his links.
One thought occurs to me: is the Archbishop of Canterbury the saddest and worst ever? I just want him to get hence to a nunnery and never bother my ears again. This time he's found common cause with the Chinese Communist authorities. How so? Well, he too understands the dangers of unpoliced conversation.
The Archbishop, from all that I have read and heard (and unlike the outputs of many dignitaries I have bothered to listen and read a fair portion) is a staunch defender of the politically correct establishment and the powers of the social welfare state. Never mind rendering unto Cesar- the Arch. Bish. would like us to lick their *****.
That's why it's the commercial media that irks the bearded fool. He accuses them of creating an 'alternative reality' far removed from the lives of ordinary people. Sorry A.B.C.- most people live in the world of money, and buy a newspaper or subscribe to a channel because it appeals to their tastes in information. They are not dupes and Rowan's simplistic argument yet remote language doesn't come close to identifying the problems with today's media.
Of course Rowan Williams is too lost in his own theo-sociological maze to be worth talking to, but nevertheless his folly gives me chance to restate my views.
The problems with today's media are twofold:
There are too many national medias in the world where positions on tv, radio and so on are reserved for people who meet the approval of oppressive political and social powers. China is a classic example. Where politicisation reigns in so much of the globe, it makes western media look good and enables them to luxuriate in politcal choices of their own when it comes to the simple matter of stating the news.
Secondly, among the relatively free western medias they are many examples of voluntary subjection of the media to political patronage, usually in return for status and privileges. The BBC is a classic example of this, but other media that seek to be the organs 'of record' tend to fall into the same traps (CNN Iraq for one notorious instance). The sad fact is that the British people and Government sanction the politicisation of their media through the licence fee and the Foreign Office's links to the BBC.
The danger with media 'of record' (inevitably a matter of the general public interest) is that it trivialises its more commercially dependent competitors (or, occasionally, forces them to suck up even more rigorously to a ruling power than a heritage media 'of record' needs to) . Maybe that's where Rowan Williams needed to begin his critique, rather than with the sub-marxist nonsense with which he turns off the British people.
But the thing that really annoys me about Williams is that he's such an establishment lackey- even though the establishment really rather despises Williams' (alleged- for he doesn't understand a thing about it) church. He reserves his praise for recent MBE Frank Gardner, even though Gardner has nothing much to recommend him apart from the fact that Islamists shot him viciously (why such people get MBEs is another question that could be asked of our 'liberal' establishment). Expert he may be, but he has been a unexceptional appeaser of the Islamofascism that leads to the terrible restrictions suffered by Christians in Islamofascist countries like Saudi Arabia. I've plenty of sympathy for Gardner, and I'd like the heads of those who shot him, but this is really a coda for Williams to endorse statism and the statist BBC especially. Trawling for another Dimbleby lecture perhaps? Or perhaps an entree to China- there are no doubt Buddists and Falun Gong who need his help, let alone Christians.
By the way (for any interested) I was christened and confirmed in the Church of England. NIMN, A.B.oC.
Saturday, June 18, 2005
Posted by ed thomas at 9:43 AM
Friday, June 17, 2005
Lovely isn't it, how the BBC suddenly get a appetite for reporting allegedly anti-semitic behaviour and intolerance of religious freedom? Can you guess who the accused are?
Now, can you also guess how many words the BBC expend on this example of religious intolerance? (via Steynonline)
Yes, that's right, I couldn't find any. I only found this, which gave the usual impression of the US as a stick-waving patriot gesturing self-interestedly at furriners.
Posted by ed thomas at 4:12 PM
Thursday, June 16, 2005
Wednesday, June 15, 2005
Tory metaphor misery- first we had the shoes, symbolising the trivial rebranding of the party; now we have the panties. That Duncan certainly has a twisted sense of what 'in touch' means. (nugget noticed via Mark Steyn's selection). They really are a painful bunch. Give me Davis any day.
Posted by ed thomas at 5:03 PM
We heard you, Mr Blair, and if we were listening carefully we heard the authentic voice of Blairism- ordinary people are work-arounds. Watching the Prime Minister's questions for the first time in ages today, I was reminded that Jacques Chirac is not always completely wrong, since Blair has a surefire strategy for often sincere questioners: he simply laughs at them. Seems a bit 'badly brought up' to me.
Posted by ed thomas at 4:23 PM
Tuesday, June 14, 2005
Extra, Extra. It seems the BBC noticed a nuance about that French kidnappee: she received farewell gifts from her kidnappers. Goodness, those Islamofascists must have got tired of all the bad press, but at least the BBC show some reflex reactions suggesting sentience. When is a hostage not a hostage?- When they're a French guest of Islamofascists.
More interestingly, this reflection (via Roger Simon) on the real feelings of Chinese people, and Mark Steyn's good Sino-sense. Having extensive expatriot experience myself I can really identify with this feeling that the deeper currents of public opinion, hidden from Microsoft scrutiny and BBC polling, are far more positive to the USA, in particular (more so than to dear old Blighty, I'm afraid), than is generally allowed for in western self-analyses.
Posted by ed thomas at 2:19 PM
Monday, June 13, 2005
What we're all about. Richard North has another great post on what the EU is all about.
Meanwhile, I offer a selection of what the BBC is all about:
Anti-Americanism, the promotion of European machination, dhimmitude and the interests of other, hostile countries.
To my mind, in the above articles, and in one case the programme connected, the BBC pursues its post-US election vendetta against Christian red State America, covers for the growing Airbus fiasco, which it terms 'squabbles', (try telling Quantas and co. that- maybe the Beeb can be a witness in court), promotes the Islamic agenda in Britain, and reports the meaningless return of yet another French journalist whose collaboration got a bit out of hand in Iraq and has now become Chirac's latest PR opportunity.
Not only is this journalism by political agenda, it's also sadly lacking in news content. The two go hand in hand it seems.
Posted by ed thomas at 10:23 AM
Sunday, June 12, 2005
A Columnist's Progress: Mark Steyn was roundly criticised by some-including Jonathan Mirsky- for an article implying that China was a good place to go to live and work. In fact, to summarise, he said that 'China’s the land of opportunity'. Oh, they said, it was a terrible abuser of human rights and the gist was that he must be ignorant or dishonest to try to argue against the EU, for one, using the example of China.
I wonder what those same people will make of this article, which include the delightfully wide-ranging lines:
'And what is the likelihood of China advancing to a functioning modern stand-alone business culture if it's unable to discuss anything except within its feudal political straitjackets? Its speech code is a sign not of control but of weakness; its internet protective blocks are not the armour but the, er, chink.'
It's another great article, satisfying that golden rule for artists everywhere by including something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue. As usual Steyn does something which virtually no one else does so clearly: he works from a framework of thought. Delightfully surprising though is the way that he breaks new stories at the same time, or rather, he gives current stories eg. internet censorship in China, intellectual piracy in the Far East, new authority. In doing so he confounds his critics. Hurrah.
Posted by ed thomas at 9:35 AM
Can it be true?
The Jerusalem Post reported that Orla Guerin was to receive an MBE, yet I couldn't find her on the BBC's list (btw. I have very limited list-scanning abilities) . The BBC is keeping quiet about it if she did, as I'd have expected a footnote to this article about Frank Gardner's award if she had been honoured.
BTW, I should point out I posted on the honours list just recently, 'inspired' by the alleged Guerin honour. Actually even without her my argument would still be essentially the same. If, however, it really is true that Guering (so easy to misspell, I find) has been honoured, I am intrigued that it's being kept so quiet. If it's the case that she was going to be honoured but somehow this transference of honour was frozen, that's also intriguing.
Posted by ed thomas at 8:34 AM