The Sun has come out for the Tories. Which won’t surprise us, and it’s about time they switched. Labour and Murdoch were always strange bed-fellows. But the timing is criminal. It’s intended to distract and destroy and undermine consideration of issues. They claim it’s a response in part to Brown’s lack-lustre speech at conference but that’s drivel. It’s long-considered, long-planned, the moment calibrated and calculated.
In short, it’s anti-democratic. We had the Telegraph hyping and spinning out expenses stories to maximise the damage to MPs credibility just before the local and Euro elections and that clearly had a big impact on the result. Now we have the Sun trying to torpedo Labour.
Why shouldn’t newspapers do this? Simply because in a mature democracy we need debate, and we need all sides (especially the major parties) to be able to advance their ideas and see them properly debated. With the press is the hands of a very few and very wealthy magnates who are in there just because they want to manipulate the process (to any of altruistic mind I apologise) then it’s just not going to happen.
No-one raises the issue because they daren’t, they’re employed by one of the papers, they don’t want the flak because there is no-one out there who will support them.
At the moment it’s a downward spiral. As had been said this morning, news sources are now much more varied, so that is something of a balance. But the big media still set the mood.