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Blog: Following the criticism of a pro-establishment Guardian leader in yesterday’s post by Antigone1984, the Guardian announced today that its leader writer is leaving the “liberal” paper. Julian Glover, who has also contributed a number of rightwing articles to the Guardian, is to become chief speech writer to Tory Prime Minister David Cameron. Glover’s reactionary articles were a puzzle to many Guardian readers, who could not understand why he was writing for the Guardian, not the Daily Telegraph. What the bulk of readers will not have realized is that Guardian leaders were also written by Glover. Newspaper leading articles have no name attached to them but are supposed to reflect the newspaper’s own view of events. It now seems to be becoming clearer why recent editorials, including the one on Afghanistan criticised yesterday by Antigone1984, were so at variance with the paper’s vaunted liberalism. Commenting on Glover’s departure into the bowels of the Tory machine, Alan Rusbridger, editor-in-chief at the paper, commented:”It’s a loss for the Guardian, but we can understand the prime minister wanting to poach such a sharp thinker.” So here we have the Guardian’s editor-in-chief bemoaning the loss of a patently rightwing leader writer. We at Antigone1984 have long considered that the Guardian as an institution forms an integral part of the rightwing media caucus. Some, but certainly not all, of its writers could be described as being on the left, but the paper itself is essentially a part of the conservative media establishment with a built-in bias towards the status quo. The outing of the rightwing Glover as Guardian leader writer rams home this point only too clearly. We ought to make one point clear, none the less. Since leaders are anonymous, of course, we cannot know for certain that it was Glover who penned the Afghanistan editorial in question.
Three Little Pigs
A slick ad for the Guardian, but doesn’t it tend to confirm that journalism is part of show business and the media are the modern opium of the people?
Readers outside the ambit of the UK may not be aware of the significance of the title of your comment: “Three Little Pigs”. This is a reference to a cryptic advertising campaign, based on a fairy tale, which the UK’s Guardian newspaper is currently (March 2012) running to draw attention to itself. Your comment appears to relate not directly to our post but rather to the advertising campaign.
Slick, maybe, but so slick that it escaped our notice entirely despite the fact that we read the campaign launch issue from cover to cover. It was only on re-reading the paper with your comment in mind that we clocked the campaign. Certainly, celebrities do feature a lot in journalism today – in our view, unnecessarily. For our part, we could live very happily without knowing anything whatever of the show business scene. This celebrity pap peddled by the media, including the Guardian, can definitely be regarded as a popular opiate, but alas it is one of many. We have ourselves identified sport as another latter-day opium of the people. Thank you for drawing attention to this point.
3 March 2012