Friday, 14 August 2009

No Secret, No Revelation

The Daily Telegraph has a story today headed “Senior Tories' links with Republican NHS-bashers revealed”, or should I say ‘non-story’ because it says nothing of any substance at all. The headline is pure propaganda.

Not only is the article about Atlantic Bridge, a political discussion group that does not appear to be secret, so it is hard to see why the headline claims to ‘reveal’ the links, but there is not even any attempt to claim that the Conservative politicians involved even discussed healthcare with the American members of the group, let alone agreed with their dislike of socialized medicine.

The only British politician mentioned talking health with the Republican members of the group was Daniel Hannan, and his views openly expressed and coherently argued on US television are hardly a revelation [update: it appears to be that Fox’s editing misrepresented even Hannan’s views. The media do not stand up well]. I agree with him, but there is no evidence that any top-rank Conservatives do.

Why will “… the views of Mr Campbell and others … raise eyebrows …”? They are mainstream views in the USA. They are only considered so controversial this side of the Atlantic because of left-wing hysteria at any mention of the NHS closing down the debate. News media such as the Telegraph should be resisting this hysteria, and allowing a more mature discussion.

It seems that while the country distances itself from Labour the Telegraph is moving ever closer, and this story in particular is poor journalism.

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