Friday, May 07, 2010

British Papers Say Good Riddance to Objective Journalism

Yesterday I wrote about a piece published in The Guardian advising anti-Tory voters how best to vote tactically, Labour or Lib-Dem, on a riding by riding basis so as to have the best chance of defeating the Conservative candidate. To me and my old journalistic ethics that seemed to be way over the line, even for a partisan paper.

Today, the Sydney Morning Herald has an eye-opener suggesting that virtually every major British paper threw objectivity into the dumper yesterday:

If there is one certainty about this most unpredictable of British polls, it is that any notion of objective journalism is dead in Britain.

''Day of Destiny: choose hope over fear'' urged The Daily Telegraph with a thoughtful, silhouette of St David Cameron against a cloud studded, dawn sky. ''The British media have always been politically aligned, worn their colours on their sleeves'' I hear you cry. Yes, true. But never has the bias been so obvious, so untrammelled, so utterly and completely fearless.

In Scotland, The Sun at least had a sense of humour: a piece of burnt toast with Gordon Brown's face superimposed on it and the entire page devoted to the headline: ''Use your loaf today or Britain is Brown bread''. The pro-Labour Mirror, Gordon Brown's only ally, reignited the class war, digging out an old picture of a fresh-faced Cameron resplendent in coat and tails: ''The picture David Cameron really really doesn't want you to see … Prime Minister? Really?''

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