Writing in a personal capacity, Website editor, Chris Ingram discusses what he sees as a very dangerous time for democracy, human rights, health and safety at work, the NHS and worker’s rights in this country and the part being played by UK newspapers and TV news media in using division and fear politics to manipulate the public:
The press and TV news media should provide society with checks and balances and real scrutiny of our Government actions, and this is an important and vital function in a democratic society.
But now, the bulk of the mainstream media is controlled by a handful of foreign-based billionaires, unregulated, highly biased politically and not beyond organised manipulation of the people.
This applies not just to printed media but to all media used as an outlet for not just their 'news' coverage, but now also into mainstream broadcasting in the form of so-called 'reality TV'; as many of those who used to be called 'newspaper barons' , have become in fact 'media barons'.
The concept behind the current media onslaught against anybody and everything that is not part of the ‘British’ tradition and not part of the ‘British way of life’, is to ensure that people believe that life was ‘wonderful’ before we had ‘foreigners’ taking over our country and destroying British traditions. This then backed up with outlandish claims that all our problems are caused by foreigners and in particular those from European countries.
The agenda is one of subtle manipulation, as can be witnessed by day-time TV and so-called reality TV which usually features social security fraud, non payment of council tax and perpetrated by mainly non-white, none English speaking people.
This of course feeds into the public view of immigrants, as determined by the media and extreme right politicians, and supports the notion that all non-white people must be immigrants; most of whom are here illegally!
Then there are those programmes aimed at encouraging property ownership and developement – e.g. buy a family sized house at knock down prices, do it up at lowest cost, make as many rooms out of it you can, and then charge maximum rent. Whilst the mainstream media largely ignores the social problems associated and caused by those profiteering from the housing shortage and politicians promote home ownership. Negating and ignoring the need for social housing and the building of council homes, is what this game is all about.
In a direct reflection of what happened in Nazi Germany and that which was done by the Der Stuermer Nazi newspaper in brainwashing the German public, our media The Daily Mail, The Express and others; use the same tactics of creating a false image of Britain’s past and turning it into nostalgia for a time and place that did not actually exist.
They also follow the example of the Nazis in attacking the country’s judiciary and making claims of ‘betrayal’, ‘collusion’ and ‘treason’ against judges and MPs who do not share their ideals and vision of the future of the whole of the UK.
In doing so they promote their ideas of what a future Britain will look like, free of foreigners, free of anything which impacts negatively upon business and profits, including worker’s rights, health and safety at work legislation, consumer rights, food safety standards and of course, environmental standards; using divide and conquer tactics, poverty and fear, to ensure control over the citizens of the country.
In short, they subscribe to the Dr Joseph Goebbels et al book: ‘Propaganda For Dummies’!
A perfect example of this occurred this month, with Aaron Banks of Leave.EU pushing two images via social media, invoking World War II and an image German Chancellor, Angela Merkel using what could be seen as a Nazi solute, and the words “We didn’t win two world wars to be pushed around by a Kraut.” emblazoned upon it.
The campaign group found themselves in further hot water yesterday after it posted on social media in response to the German Chancellor’s request that Northern Ireland remains within the European Union’s customs union when the rest of the UK leaves the bloc.
However, following a backlash in Parliament and social media, Leave.EU has been forced to issue an apology for it’s posting, knowing indeed that the damage is done and following their tactic of using extreme and offensive imagery and then apologising for it afterwards.
Remember this from Nigel Farage?
MP Johnny Mercer said:
While Antoinette Sandbach encouraged people to complain to the ASA.
After defending the tweet – calling Piers Morgan a “snowflake” for reacting angrily to it – Leave.EU co-founder Arron Banks has admitted it “went too far” several newspapers reported the following day.
In quantifying the distasteful act of Aaron Banks, let us compare it to the strategy of the Nazi’s newspaper Der Stuermer.
It portrays British politicians and England as having been led by and taken over by the ‘enemy of the people’
But what of Dominic Cummings, the publicity tactician of Leave.EU?
Currently advisor to Boris Johnson and architect of the Tory Governments tactics in stoking up fear, resentment and hatred of anything that is not ‘British’ and is not supporting the 37% of the British electorate that voted to leave the EU, he admitted in 2017 to the lies of the official Leave campaign:
“Pundits and MPs kept saying ‘why isn’t Leave arguing about the economy and living standards’. They did not realise that for millions of people, £350m/NHS was about the economy and living standards – that’s why it was so effective. It was clearly the most effective argument not only with the crucial swing fifth but with almost every demographic.
Even with UKIP voters it was level-pegging with immigration. Would we have won without immigration? No. Would we have won without £350m/NHS? All our research and the close result strongly suggests No. Would we have won by spending our time talking about trade and the Single Market? No way.” - Dominic Cummings
Boris Johnson was the Daily Telegraph’s Brussels correspondent before he became an MP, where he has since been credited with creating the “euromyth”. A series of lies and anti-EU propaganda, in which he claimed the EU was threatening Britain’s way of life (You can see a list of these ‘euromyths’ here).
Later he was sacked for making up stories. But his lies and deceit continue and have indeed come into their own now he is the UK’s PM and has one Donald Cummings (previously director of communications with Leave.EU) as his propaganda minister, and Donald Trump as his mentor!
But of course, the tactic is to utilise social media, print media, and TV news to simply make outrageous claims via doctored videos, false advertising claims (E.G. DWP ads about Universal Credit), distorted claims about other parties' policy and their leaders, and of course fake news items and press releases. Then when found out, to apologise and make up some excuse. Wait a few days, and then carry on as before! Repeat tactics until end of the general election.
The lack of public political knowledge is maintained by the likes of the Telegraph, Daily Mail and Express newspapers, all of whom distort and manipulate the policies of political parties in order to denigrate their appeal, except for those of the Tories.
The NHS, free education for all, and social security may be proud British institutions that reflect our sense of fairness and values. All of which are steeped in ‘socialist’ ways of thinking.
Ask UK voters if they support the NHS, and free education for children, and most will say ‘yes, of course, they are what makes me proud to be British.’ But ask them which party holds these policies, and the majority won’t be able to tell you. Nor do they understand that these services are part of a programme of democratic socialism, the very mention of which will get you the response, ‘That’s communism and we don’t support that!’.
The brainwashing by the UK press and TV media has in fact worked.
But of course the ‘Goebbels’ game they are playing requires them to smear their opponents and in particular political party leaders. This is aided by the BBC’s news and political programmes and to a lesser extent Sky News.
One politician in particular, Jeremy Corbyn, has been subjected to the longest continuous smear campaign against any single politician in the history of this island, and the extent to which these smears are quoted by the public is frightening and an indictment of the level of political knowledge of UK voters.
In 2016, the Independent newspaper produced a report into the media bias against Jeremy Corbyn and found numerous false claims made about him, including that he sat down with terrorists such as Hezbollah, and the IRA, without mentioning the context in which he did so.
Like other major UK political leaders, he attempted to broker peace initiatives and like other leaders such as Tony Blair, who also did so, understood that without talking to our enemies, peace can never be established.
The Good Friday Agreement with the IRA which has given us peace in N. Ireland came out of sitting down with the IRA! The media is happy to forget that the Chilean leader Pinoche, who murdered hundreds of thousands of his own people was a favourite of Margaret Thatcher’s and she arranged for him to come to the UK for treatment on the NHS!
Here you can read The Independent article, along with the 11 worst false claims against Corbyn which are still repeated today.
But of course their greatest tactic is to claim the country is in dire straits because of certain economic and social problems. Then create those same problems, and then spend millions in campaigns to convince the voters that only they can resolve the problems, they have actually created themselves!
As Goebbels is oft quoted as saying: ‘The bigger the lie, the easier it is to be believed.’
Source: The London Economic / Twitter / The New Statesman / The Guardian / Der Stuermer / The Daily Mail / The Express / Hansard / The Spectator