Monday, 5 June 2017

Corbyn soars high above weathervane Guardian

It's been a pleasure to watch Jeremy Corbyn surge on a wave of rational argument and populist appeal. Whatever happens now, Corbyn has won his party and seen off any further Blairite plots. It's been inspiring to track this astonishing comeback, against everything the establishment could muster, most notably the brutal media onslaught.

In particular, it's been heartening to observe the squirming awkwardness of Corbyn's left-liberal naysayers at the Guardian, following its damning editorials, loaded reportage and columnists of calumny - Jonathan Freedland, Andrew Rawnsley, Owen JonesGeorge Monbiot and others - all now desperately back-tracking. 

As Jonathan Cook writes:
Those journalists who should have been behind Corbyn from the start – who could have been among his few allies as he battled the corporate media for nearly two years as Labour leader – are now starting to eat humble pie. Polls suggest that Corbyn may be gradually turning the election around, to the point where the latest poll, published in the Times, indicates that Britain could be heading for a hung parliament. No one is surprised that the Daily Mail, Telegraph and Times have been relentless in their hatchet jobs on Corbyn. But it has been disconcerting for the left that the Guardian and BBC never gave him a chance either. He was in their gun-sights from day one. Owen Jones, a Labour stalwart and Guardian columnist, should have been Corbyn’s number one ally in the press. And yet he used the invaluable space in his columns not to challenge the media misrepresentations, but to reinforce them. He engaged in endless and morose navel-gazing, contemplating a Labour rout.
After so many visceral Guardian attacks on Corbyn, one might have expected, at least, some kind of humble contrition. Nothing. Despite writing Corbyn's 'obituary', there's been no mea culpa from Freedland or his smug coterie. Someone at the Guardian even thought it necessary to edit the headline in Freedland's 'supportive' article from "extraordinary fightback" to just "fightback". 

The seething resentment of Corbyn permeates such crawling 'approvals' as they scramble to be seen as 'on-side'.

(h/t Ludwig W)
From John Harris to John Crace, the rush of Guardian liberals now affecting praise for Corbyn is almost too embarrassing to read.

Another, Rhiannon Lucy Cosslett - revealing much about subtle Guardian bullying of young reporters - has now declared: "I used to be a shy Corbynite, but I'm over that now."

Disappointingly, when congratulated, yet chided, by Jonathan Cook over her belated 'coming out' for Corbyn, Cosslett could only reduce to: "interesting this man waited for a woman to write something before launching a patronising tirade". Cook replied: "Oh dear! Better read my blog before commenting. Otherwise your special pleading looks very silly. (Try asking Freedland, Monbiot, Jones)." Media Lens, also citing Cook's many previous attacks on Freedland, Jones and Monbiot, asked: "Worst ever attempt to resort to 'sexist male' take?"

The real intention of Cook's comment, as emphasised in his updated piece, was not to target Cosslett, but to highlight the pernicious culture of intimidation at the Guardian, and show how the actual publishing of Cosslett's piece is yet another example of the paper in all-out damage limitation mode.

Now, days before the election, a Guardian editorial has come out with the most grudging, 'endorsement' of Corbyn. Still damned with faint praise, Corbyn is presented as some kind of 'surprisingly improved schoolboy' who, despite not coming up to the Guardian's lofty 'standards', could just, after all, have some 'redeeming grades' for use in seeing-off the Tories.

With Corbyn's poll numbers surging, here was the most cynical and sanctimonious attempt to 're-identify' with Labour's core, and 'walk-back' some of its recent hatchet-job editorial

Whatever the outcome on Thursday, we can be pretty sure the Guardian cabal will be using the same weathervane commentary to keep readers abreast of 'Corbyn's progress'. Pleasingly, many are now deserting its fair-weather pages, having seen through its shrill, pettifogging and hypocritical output.

Corbyn's electoral advancement against everything the Guardian's 'best' warned us about shows just what a crucial impediment the liberal establishment media is to real political progress. 

And its humiliation can give impetus to wider radical aspirations. For example, in conveying the case for a more radical independence politics, Robin McAlpine at Common Space sees great merit in Corbyn's assertive approach, and the need to resist the Guardian's doom-laden mantras: 
I've been following the Guardian's coverage of Corbyn with gritted teeth – the swaggering certainty of most Guardian analysts (many former cheerleaders for Blair) that Corbyn is self-evidently bottled, distilled failure was utterly endemic.
In halting the Blairites and taking his party to this vital point, Corbyn has not only demonstrated the deep potential for a renewed politics, but that it's possible to build such a project without the help and approval of an entirely hostile and system-serving media. That's a massive achievement and message of encouragement to all now seeking real progressive change.            

11 comments:

Rod Webb said...

Well deserved inuctment of the Guardian and praise for Corbyn. Doesn't it all look so different now that nobody is laughing.

Joe Emersberger said...

Very nicely put, John.

John Hilley said...

Thanks, Rod and Joe.

CJ Mooney said...

He's 8-12% behind in most polls.

CJ Mooney said...

The truth is, Labour don't care about winning any more. Only being 5 percent behind is considered a win.....

This is what Corbyn critics warned about. Becoming a party of protest.

And I'm sure Labour would have won this election with an electable candidate

John Hilley said...

What's your evidence for asserting that "Labour don't care about winning any more"?
Which "electable candidate" do you have in mind?

Anonymous said...

It's the PLP and Guardian who appeared not to want to win under Corbyn at any cost. If we don't, I lay the blame squarely at their fett

John Hilley said...

Indeed. The Blairites, PLP plotters and Guardian select did everything in their power to discredit, smear, parody and stop Corbyn.

It's been painful to watch some of them now in tortured 'turnaround'.
Here's some further examples from Media Lens re the Guardian's Younge, Harris and Toynbee:

https://twitter.com/medialens/status/871994377350066176

https://twitter.com/medialens/status/871995550010363905

https://twitter.com/medialens/status/871998969366315010

Anonymous said...

Don't write him off yet. If the majority of Labour MPs had United behind him from the outset, he wouldn't have had to make up suchaving a large deficit.

Anonymous said...

BBC under Harding is worse

Anonymous said...

BBC worse under Head of News and Current Affairs Harding. They have been Murdochised. Only blogs are not tied into the Tory, Blairite neo liberal agenda