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The Truth About The Daily Mail

So, those wacky chaps at the Daily Mail are at it again. For no apparent reason, they’ve decided to launch an attack on Ralph Milliband, former writer and activist, and father to the current Labour leader, Ed Milliband. He also died in 1994, so any attack on his views seems a little late to the party and perhaps a little unfair. It’s all very odd.

The Mail claims that Ralph Milliband was a man that “hated Britain”, simply because he held socialist views and had often criticised certain British institutions and how they operated. As someone who also likes to criticise certain British institutions, I am here to announce that I too hate Britain. The Queen once looked at me funny in a pub and I’ve held a grudge ever since.

Or maybe that’s just nonsense. But then again, a few weeks back I came to the conclusion that the Daily Mail was steadily turning into a form of Onion-style satire, posting completely ludicrous stories that showed insane leaps of logic and obvious hypocrisy in an attempt to trick people into thinking it was real news.

However, I’ve changed my stance. The actions of the Mail these past few days have caused me to reassess what they really are as a newspaper. I am now convinced instead that the Mail is some kind of huge social experiment, designed to see how low the press in the UK can sink before everything implodes.

After all, what sane newspaper editor would publish an angry ranting story about a man’s father, ten years after that father’s death? Not only that, but a story founded on a diary entry where a seventeen-year old in the 1930s said how he wasn’t fond of the English, a story that conveniently forgot that every seventeen year old in existence hates everything around them regardless because of angst or something.

Beyond that, it was a story that could come up with no more conclusive evidence to Milliband hating Britain other than “he said some bad things about the education system” and “he didn’t like the Queen very much, thought she was a bit miserable”, which basically means that every British person ever hates Britain, so clearly the story could only be written by a raving madman or a very clever satirist.

It also seems unlikely that a newspaper that takes itself seriously would offer Ed Milliband the chance to post a rebuttal, then immediately reprint the original story underneath, accompanied with a new column that basically says “we’re not really sorry, my dad could beat up your dad, nyerrrr”. That’s highly unprofessional, unless of course you’re The Onion or Private Eye and the entire point is to look ridiculous.

The social experiment elements come in when the Mail sent in some form of robot onto Newsnight who was only programmed to say the same sentence over and over again, clearly in an attempt to see if it was possible to make British people actually agree with Alistair Campbell. It appears to have worked, although Alastair Campbell still isn’t widely liked.

The social experiment continued with a reporter sneaking into a memorial for Ed Milliband’s uncle and asking everyone what they thought of the story, which no sane editor or reporter would do unless it was for some kind of strange experimental documentary, like when Joaquin Phoenix claimed he was quitting acting and becoming a rapper. Only now we’re seeing how far we can take journalism and still claim it’s in the public interest despite it clearly not being the case.

It’s too easy to claim that the Daily Mail are just a hateful paper and point out that they were pretty supportive of Hitler and his regime during the 1930s and 1940s, since maybe that’s been part of the experiment all along. Maybe those stories were planted for people to find and point out the Daily Mail’s supposed hypocrisy, just to see how much of a frenzy they can whip up.

I have to commend the Daily Mail for such a glorious piece of satire, performance art and/or documentary film-making, whatever it is they’re ultimately leading up to. Congratulations! This is a stellar new step in your attempts to expose the absurdity and dark side of tabloid journalism.

Reminds me of that time a link to your report about women feeling more pressured to look good being placed in the same column with loads of stories about how awful that female celebrity looks in her bikini. And don’t think I’ve forgotten your criticism of the BBC’s coverage of the royal baby, 23 pages after you’d devoted an entire issue to said baby.

I see what you’re up to there, guys. You don’t fool me.

Or maybe they really are just a bunch of amoral twats. It could go either way really.

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  1. October 6, 2013 at 11:15 pm

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