Archives For politics

“I strode into that politician’s office ready to take his vision and weld it to words that would swell the breast and demand action to make that vision a reality.

“What do you want to say” I asked him.

“Oh well, we were rather hoping you would suggest something good,” the politician replied.

“My friends, I was I confess, stunned. I, the speechwriter, was being asked not just to contribute the form but the content. And in asking that I understood that what mattered to the politician was not that I suggest a way to persuade people of a policy the politician believed in, but simply that I say something that was pleasing.

“And that moment, in a nutshell, seemed to capture all that was wrong with modern politics.

“The rhetoric of modern politics is no longer about persuading others of the rightness of one’s position. It is about mobilising sufficient numbers of those who already share our prejudices. It is about getting out the vote.

“Now if the shock of my realisation reflects only my own naivety, it reflects calculated understanding on the part of our politicians. That approach takes advantage of our own psychology and modern technology exacerbates those cognitive biases.

“Research tells us that we experience pleasure when hearing arguments that confirm our existing prejudices.

“Meanwhile, the Internet and Satellite TV offer a multitude of refuges where we may hear only the view that pleasingly accords with our own. And on the rare occasion the disagreeable voices intrude, we can simply block them or un-friend them.

“Against these trends, there is no counter pressure.

“The information resource that is the Internet is frequently more burden than boon. The sheer torrent of information making it impossible to sort the accurate signals from the biased and irrational noise.

“In this world, no politician is incentivised to educate or to persuade people of harsh truths. They all want to be re-elected. If nothing else their salary and pensions depend on it. It’s a cruel jobs market and nobody wants to be flung on it with one night’s warning and a CV that reads simply ‘spent the last 5 years shouting and answering angry letters.’

“So when a politician speaks now, it is not to bridge a divide but to confirm prejudice. It is to rouse his loyal troops to action. Now if you believe, as I do, that however rational it may be as a response to the nature of our current system, a political rhetoric that does not seek to engage but to divide, is not the right way to make decisions, then you agree with me that there is a problem.

“Now it’s no good identifying a problem without at least pretending to offer a solution. So I do. Not so much in the expectation that it will be enacted, but because in thinking about my solution, we might more clearly understand the nature of the problem.”

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By Jack Turner

People for whom “I really found myself in India” is not a derogatory term, modern politics is only seen through a prism of there being a right answer which must be sought and found and then proselytised from the mountain top so that the ignorance of the enlightened can be lifted.

The third way centrist slant of politics emerged in the 90’s as a way of moving forward from union labour vs unrestricted capital argument. It worked because like the explosion of cheap credit, it gave people a feeling of having gained something immediately without the exhaustion of working through the details.

Alongside the repeal of Glass-Steagall, Clinton’s other far reaching damage to the global political landscape was that finding a centrist argument meant winning the argument.

Political expediency has always lead to telling people what they want to hear, but by moving to the centre, each side has lost their fundamental reason for entering the argument in the first place. With no opposition it does not resolve conflict, it just provides one direction with which to deal with it.

Not having an argument is not the same as reaching a compromise, it just misses the complexity required to understand the other points of view. Without the argument, there is just conclusion whilst skipping the fulfilment that comes from having your point validated by being heard. This is what is driving the easily dismissed sense of apathy subscribed to the greater part of the population. I don’t see it as apathy. Rather, it is the unrequited fury at not only not being heard with  the myriad of grievances that any populace has, but that the framing of any discussion which deals with the progress of our country does not even have the mechanism for those grievances to be given relevance.

This energy dammed through the lack of structural change does not erupt in violence for the most part but instead spills over into fantasy expressed through the disingenuous nature of the 24hour news cycle, extolling an Orwellian ever present with no past and a conjectured future. It’s the baseless transitory nature of our political class that endears such little trust. With the lack of shared experience that comes from x% of MP’s coming from private schools, x% from two universities, x% sitting on board of directors in and out of office, the sense of sacrifice resulting from seeing classmates at the same exclusive institutions just further distorts an already myopic world view.

 

Is this figure gormless or Gormly

Tide crashing against it

or staring out majestically

Will it speak in this soliloquy

Silent or are you deaf to its pleas

Feckless or futility

The road less traveled is

guarded closely

to maintain

the plaster cast of the upper caste

which is wrapped with the mythology

that hard work isn’t built

on the supine backs of the huddled mass

 

That require just a cup of tea

to perspire at the daily grind

which they thought was left behind when

last they lay their heads on

their scared bed

For they too have folk stories

that offer comfort on cold and frosty mornings

that the lots of we, can be changed by the

lottery

that ours is not to do and die

but to strive for

rather than survive

so that the farthest flung apple

from our tree

will grow to see

a tectonic shift that will

take from them and give to

me

 

If that comes to exist

rain washed granite

will show inscribed

“Here stood a figure who could have been alive.”

 

 

It’s been a busy week for news, and plenty of non-news too. But fear not, Thomas Barlow is here with his second weekly instalment of Barlow’s Digest, to sort the worthy from the not and decipher what is happening from the lies and bullshit. Let’s crack on.

Liberty

When they screw you, they like to screw you from two directions.  A law to promote fracking will also permanently infringe on our rights, thanks law gazette.

Pesky Human rights are clearly getting in the way of the filthy rich getting stinking rich, Theresa May admitted, in a rare moment of honesty
Sorry, I meant to say, goddamn Europeans!  Holding us to a law that we wrote to stop any further genocides in Europe after the Second World War! We’ll have no rights for Humans if that’s what we want!

The most invidious attack on our liberty is the attack on our minds – we don’t need to be radically and physically oppressed if we are divided, distracted and misinformed.

Economics (not boring I promise!)

Don’t get a job – it is for bovine idiots!

There are better critiques than this rather right wing US one out there, and we will return to this subject over the coming weeks, but economics is not just about nations and global trading, it is about you!

The dignity of work.

And remember if you are worried about the burden you pay for others to live scot free, the people at the top are the REAL SCROUNGERS!

Image: 24 Dash

Image: 24 Dash

If the UK was a village of 100 people, a few people would be jobless,  one may be so disabled they can’t work, and maybe one of that lot would be taking the mick, and they would all be easily looked after by a little food off our table.  In comparison, our stinking greedy village overlord would have a gang of bullies stealing nearly everything we had, in hundreds of sneaky ways and then hiring people to tell us what scum each other was.

Tax Justice?  Hmmmm…

Oh don’t forget that UKIP are a party of the rich, scummy landlords!

Environment

Chevron reminds people of the economic benefits of Fracking after killing a man, then offering the community Pizza vouchers. Jesus, no matter how hard we try, Americans always manage to be more tasteless than us…

Science is telling is to revolt

Distraction of the week

Ukraine

As per usual, we cannot get an honest source of information, so we are clueless as to most of what is actually happening.  What we do know is that it is messy, there are fascists involved heavily, but also radicals and liberals.  I Acknowledge does the best run down.

But maybe we shouldn’t care (http://www.philosophersmail.com/040214-what-kiev.php)

And in Venezuela where the corporate media have been caught lying about two attempted right wing military coups and a host of other things, the media is avoiding even touching the protests there.

Good News

A policeman actually gets convicted of something!

Managing to wobble between sanctimonious and pop culture drivel, it is still hard to suppress a little joy that Vice is launching a news channel, with some of the excellent reports and videos that it has already done being used in montage here. 

And Here.

Honestly, please treat yourself to ‘This is what winning looks like’, for what state Afghanistan is really in – it is not an overly emotional, heart strings puller, just a great inside look.  You’ll love the US Army Major by the end…

Russell Brand dealing with inanity deftly yet again

A street entertainer holds his own when challenged by full bore racist pricks Glasgow AFA, you know what they look like…

Kid does science experiment

Salford make it into LA news

A doctor strikes a small blow for science (btw people – science is a METHOD, not an invisible force that powers Frankenstein monsters)

Anarchists blow shit up again!

And some more.

A man in debt demolishes his house and drops in front of his bank (who said we’ve got nothing to learn from Bulgarians!)

GREATER MANCHESTER NEWS

As I am a proud (adopted) Mancunian, I thought I would include a little local news that may not make the nationals.

Parties were thrown all over Salford as Hazel Blears announced she wouldn’t be standing again in 2015, after narrowly avoiding deselection by the (pretty militant) Salford Labour party. It took a lot of bribes to keep her in that time, clearly she didn’t have that much left in the account any longer…

Though in even better news, a former Class War member is standing in Salford as well, more on Class war in coming weeks…

The campaign to save the roots of the Carribbean carnival is under way.

Lots of news from Barton Moss (in Salford – which is its’ own city. Yes i know. Salford!) where local protectors are single handedly holding up the Fracking industry in the UK –

Local Schoolgirl arrested

2 Week adjournment from eviction

Local Hacienda legend Dave Haslam rocks it for Barton Moss

Get involved with writing energy strategy for our locality

Thomas Barlow

Image: Ipsos Mori

Image: Ipsos Mori

Many people in Britain believe that immigration is our biggest problem. In politics and media, it is certainly highly reported – which plays into our attention and the amount of importance we attach to a subject. By much of the coverage, immigration has become a word onto which the country is able to blame all it’s ills – housing, education, jobs, healthcare – problems in all of these areas have come to be blamed in part, or in large, on immigration.

This is due to an ever-flowing cycle of media and political debate, that continues stoking anti-immigration rhetoric, keeping it at the forefront and centre of debate, at the expense of other important issues.

“Media outlets often inflate or speculate about numbers of asylum seekers, refugees and immigrants. Newspaper and TV images play into the dominant stereotype of the young dangerous man breaking into Britain and threatening ‘our’ communities. 31 percent of headlines and 53 percent of text about asylum across all newspapers has negative connotations. Language used to describe immigration is highly hostile across all newspaper types, with ‘illegal’ and ‘bogus’ the most commonly used terms to describe immigrants and asylum seekers.

In addition to mis-reporting, there is also ‘over-reporting’. In 2002, for example, 25 percent of Daily Mail and 24 percent of Daily Express articles were about asylum.”

This extract is from the brilliant ‘How Politicians and the Media Made Us Hate Immigrants’ and explains how immigration is presented as an ‘uncomfortable truth’ and ‘what the public is really thinking’ despite politicians and the media being the perpetrators of the language, stereotypes and rhetoric used.

This leads to a back and forth between parties who then attempt to demonstrate they are taking a harder line against the immigration issue which they themselves have talked into high importance. An example of this being the ‘Go Home’ vans – an idea thrown up in the haste and fire of anti-immigration policy tennis between UKIP and the coalition. The move proved a step too far for the public, and the idea was dropped soon after it came into existence, but immigration remains at the centre of debate.

Image: The Telegraph

Image: The Telegraph

And while it continues to swamp the conversation, the issue is never really approached in a way that can allow analysis, or progressive debate. It remains unfettered with true statistics and facts, or long-term planned policy. Instead, the loaded language takes centre stage and is used as fact. The veil of ‘uncomfortable truth’ allows the politicians and media to remain vague about the factual aspect, yet weighted in their anti-immigration slant.

Create a problem, fix a problem

This maintains a steady air of anger and discrimination towards immigrants in the public sphere, and allows anti-immigration policy to be pushed through, despite it potentially being severely discriminatory. For example, the proposal to restrict healthcare to migrants for the first year of residency could be life-threatening should someone come to need it when falling ill unexpectedly or after an accident. But honing in on the effects in this way is left out of the political debate, due to risk of elevating immigrants to levels of human compassion and understanding. Instead, as a vague, negative sub-human force they are much more easily legislated against and blamed.

The rhetoric has also lead to huge amounts of time devoted to implementing ‘solutions’ to ‘problems’ that have been created through political and media conversation. For example, before Christmas the government promised to push ahead with plans to restrict other access to benefits for EU immigrants, such as housing benefits and employment allowances. The press and politicians vowed to fight ‘benefits tourism,’ and the extent of the coverage combined with continued speeches from politicians seemed to suggest that this was a huge issue that was bleeding the system dry. Yet, the EU released a report revealing that in most EU countries, the portion of EU migrants amongst welfare recipients was below 5%, as most migrants came to work or for family. Other research and fact-checks supported this:

“We found little empirical evidence that the problem existed.

But ministers continued to sound the alarm. Last year Chris Grayling warned that Britain’s welfare state could be “a magnet for other parts of the world”.

Again, we found that the facts didn’t support his case.”

 C4, Factcheck

Research has found that immigrants contribute £25bn to the UK economy. Yet legislation and media debate continues to attack immigrants, and politicians search for praise for doing it.

Similar problems have been created within the benefits system itself, with another law passing last year to increase penalties to a maximum jail term of ten years for those committing benefit fraud. Benefit fraud accounts for 0.7% of welfare spending – a level that has remained the same for a decade or so, yet the media campaigns and government rhetoric on ‘benefits cheats’ has created the idea that there is a more serious and growing problem. Around a quarter of all media coverage on welfare is about fraud, and this over-reporting leads to the creation of a problem in the public sphere, which does not exist in these proportions in reality. But policies are created to then deal with these ‘problems’ and the government receive praise for doing so, while other serious and damaging issues are once again left out of the limelight.

Image: Anorak.co.uk

Image: Anorak.co.uk

The impact of this kind of treatment of the immigration debate keeps an air of racism present in politics and amongst the public. The depictions in the media of immigrants and asylum seekers keep the public suspicious of visible ethnic minorities, who are seen as below them, or sub-human, undeserving of the same rights and services of those already here. The rhetoric is powerful and mature. And the impact of denying things such as healthcare to an immigrant who may be unfortunate enough to need it, is rarely seen or spoken about.

The attack on immigration is putting us back years in terms of race relations, as we now see pressure put on landlords and potentially doctors, to check immigration statuses of those needing their service. Suspicion will, like the media suggests, fall to those wearing cultural or ‘different’ clothing, with accents and different skin colours. And just as the words ‘scrounger’ and ‘skiver’ have entered the public language from media and politics, so too have the terms for immigrants as ‘illegals’ or ‘dodgy.’

And this blanket coverage of immigration is at the expense of everything else, as other issues are neglected and left out of debate, which can be fatal for services and other social issues.

The privatisation of the NHS has received markedly less coverage in the media. Similarly, the sell off of student loans with an increased interest rate has barely been mentioned in most news reports. In truth, immigration acts as a reliable smokescreen for politicians to fill public debate as other policies and issues are drowned out, allowing the government to continue with their course of action without public disapproval or knowledge.

And this perpetuating political showmanship will continue for as long as it maintains the status quo. We have seen this subject arouse and control the political debate time and time again during times of hardship. And the media often dictate that the election will be ‘won’ on a party’s line on immigration, or poke at politicians asking for a ‘harder line’ than the other party. When we see smaller parties such as the BNP and UKIP gain some electorate, despite their differences, it is to do with immigration. The effect of an unease thrust upon the public, stoking racial difference and entitlement, when people are struggling against austerity. To blind us with blanket coverage, as our NHS, education and social support is quietly snatched from our grasp.

Changing the debate

Immigration has been loaded with stereotypes and regressive attitudes through years of PR and media campaigns. It is used to distract debate, and divert anger at social problems to an already marginalized section of society. As this happens, government push through with damaging and unpopular policies that escape our sight.

We need to reject the language and media stereotypes of immigrants, and redress focus on issues such as the NHS, education and employment. In the run up to the election, politicians will up the ante on their immigration policies, but this will not solve the shortage of housing. It won’t protect the NHS. It won’t create employment or invest in young people’s futures. Immigration is used to divide people and now we need to reject the punch-and-judy show that rotates back forth between parties, in favour of implementing strong social policies and solutions to the problems that need our attention.

It seems strange that ‘Go Home’ advertisements were even tried in 2013. Political debate is regressing without people speaking up and rejecting what they’re told. We should start laying the foundations of a place we want to live in. As Shami Chakrabarti said, we need to look at the bigger picture here about what we want and what we should be working towards – ‘Do we want to be a foreigner in most places in the world? Or do we want to be a human being, everywhere in the world?’

 by Kam Sandhu @KamBass

The Crown Prosecution Service have announced that they will push for increased penalties for benefit fraud, with maximum sentences reaching ten years in jail. In a sudden move, Keir Starmer, Head of the Crown Prosecution Service apparently said that society was “hurting as a result of people taking advantage of the benefit system, and he would crack down on perpetrators.”

However, benefit fraud is NOT increasing which makes this move far more dubious and unnecessary. This story has once again inflamed a public slamming of benefit claimants, and the hard line will certainly have an effect on the voting public.

Image: Join Public Issues

Image: Joint Public IssuesTeam

Fraud currently accounts for 0.9% of benefits expenditure, equalling £1.2bn.

1.2% of benefit expenditure is paid out in overpayment error by the claimant or by the DWP. Thus, more money would be saved if the DWP ensured that all claims were simply paid correctly, but there seems to be no hard line taken against this.

The Joint Public Issues Team believe that a quarter of media coverage of welfare refers to fraud. Earlier this year, a TUC poll revealed that members of the public thought 27% of the welfare budget was lost to fraud, when it actually stands at 0.9%. The press bombardment of welfare ‘moral panic’ has implied that there is a real culture of fraud and criminality amongst benefit claimants – ultimately turning the public opinion against them. Taking a hard line against the faux-criminal persona put upon claimants, could provide a strong political move by government as we edge closer to the election period. And the press have relayed the message to the extent that the public believe in this charade.

The press, the government and Keir Starmer QC have failed to supply the facts above. They have failed to mention how rare benefit fraud is. They have failed to mention that the figure for benefit fraud is dwarfed by the figure for unclaimed benefits, which stands, according to the DWP, somewhere between £7.5bn – £12bn.

This figure is further dwarfed by the amount lost to tax avoidance and tax evasion. Yet, the CPS has taken no such ‘hard line’ here. HM Revenue and Customs estimate the amount lost to tax avoidance and evasion at £32bn. The European Union estimate £95bn.

In the below graph, the fraud figures from the DWP of £1.2bn have been added to the HMRC figures for Working Tax Credit and child benefit fraud (equalling £870m – rounding to a total of £2bn):

Image: Fact Check C4

Image: Fact Check Blog – Channel 4

The move to increase the penalty for those committing benefit fraud is a prejudiced attack on the poor. Because CEOs, bankers and companies walk free of penalties for money fraud worth millions and sometimes billions, but the government want us to see benefit claimants found guilty of committing fraud for tens, hundreds, thousands of pounds as dangerous and as criminally punishable as violent offenders, rapists and murderers, who are likely to receive similar or less severe jail terms.

Richard Murphy, author and manager of the blog Tax Research, commented on the new laws:

“Tax fraud is now subject to maybe 400 prosecutions a year. The penalties are small. But ten years is being threatened for benefit fraud. The publicity, the sentences and the messaging is all disproportionate and the allocation of resources is all wrong.

“Tax evasion is the cancer really causing a crisis in the UK, undermining fair competition, destroying trust, eroding professional standards, fuelling austerity, driving misery and denying our children a future. But it’s benefit fraud that is picked on. That’s warped logic if ever there was evidence of such thinking.”

There must be punishment for breaking the law – few would disagree. But when a law is changed to persecute and punish an entire section of society, whilst another group are immune from the same laws, it is a smear against our justice system. And when the PR of party politics runs over into the laws and punishment of society, we are reaching a very worrying stage indeed.

by Kam Sandhu @KamBass
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Six speakers took but ten minutes to say their piece at the Media Reform Rally on Monday 17th June. Despite the time restraint, each of the speakers delivered a strong, individual assault on the changes that need to happen to restore faith, democracy and integrity to the British Press and take it out of the hands of an elite handful. So much was said, we’ll have to do this over two posts. Here’s some of what we heard: 

Image: Media Reform Coalition

Up first was Murat Akser from Kadir Has University in Istanbul, who spoke about the absence of media independence in Turkey:

Murat Akser Image: MySpace

Murat Akser Image: MySpace

Why isn’t the mainstream media reporting these events? First of all, because of big business interests integrated with the media. All big corporations who own banks and have big interests own the media outlets in Turkey at the moment. It’s not even horizontal integration anymore, because the same corporation can own the same type of media outlet in Turkey, like 5 TV channels, 4 national newspapers, 20 radios owned by the same company. Sometimes they have the very same news in the same order.

Editorial [begins] at the very top level. Which means the owners of big corporations that can cost billions of dollars, personally read editorials and sign what is to be printed and what is to be broadcast.

We are dealing with a media autocracy where the state and the government controls the news, with complacent media owners.

It’s happening right now. Editorials are being controlled everyday.

Turkey now has the most number of reporters arrested in the world. Now why is that important? Because we are not talking about a dictatorship or a terror state.  We are dealing with a place that prides itself on being a democracy for the last 67 years.

But, what I am trying to say is that this is changing. There are new ways of reporting incidents from the field. All these young people who are out there resisting are actually fighting against this conglomerate pressure.

Because the first reaction those people did was walk in front of these building or big media monopolies and shout ‘free the news’. And now they are freeing the news. There are people out there, everyone with a cell phone, iphone or screens – now they cannot control the news. The media is going to be ours once again. This is the way of the future. And I’m hoping that this media autocracy will end because there are not now many reporters left to be arrested.

Lets get our media back to our own hands. Each of us are reporters. Each of us can go out there, actively, and report on anything we see fit, and if those media outlets cannot do it. We will do it.

Murat Akser, Kadir Has University, Istanbul

Michelle Stanistreet Image: The Guardian

Michelle Stanistreet Image: The Guardian

A free media is essential to a democracy. It just doesn’t work without it. People need to hear a range of arguments, they need equal access to information and opinion. Evidence shows repeatedly, that countries with a large number of news anchors and an independent media are less susceptible to corruption by politicians and business. That’s why the question of who owns the press is so vital.

The NUJ was a core participant at the Leveson inquiry, and this investigation into the culture and practices of the press really lifted the lid on how widespread unethical and illegal practices had been in the industry. It also demonstrated how the relations of politicians, the press and the police were corrupted by the instance of one man owning 37% of the newspaper market. And with that power comes arrogance amongst his own newspaper executives, who had really, genuinely seemed to believe they had become untouchable.

It was really interesting to see politicians turn up at Leveson and unburden themselves, and by their own admission have become too craven to take on the Murdoch press. They feared that they’d be pursued personally or that their party’s policies would be savaged. Prime Minister after Prime Minister felt they had to pay homage at the court of Rupert.

They meet up in Mayfair clubs with promises of being backed by the Murdoch press at the next election. One of them even became godfather to the press’s own daughter. Likewise with the police, particularly the Metropolitan police, an unhealthy relationship developed between them and News International.

And Rupert Murdoch has long maintained that he doesn’t dictate any editorial line in his newspapers. And I’d ask just one question, if that’s the case then why did all but one of his 175 newspapers around the world have the same pro war line on Iraq.

John Major was told by the media mogul that he’d withdraw his support in his newspapers unless government changed their policy on the UK’s membership of the EU. This is the kind of practical way in which the power of one man influenced the decisions of our press here in the UK.

Michelle Stanistreet, General Secretary, National Union of Journalists 

Justin Schlosberg Image: bbk.co.uk

Justin Schlosberg Image: bbk.co.uk

Today, 6 out of the 7 biggest national newspapers in this country by circulation peddle a conservative, neo-liberal right-wing agenda.  For two decades, progressive politics has had no choice and no voice.

But it’s not just Murdoch and it’s not just about the tabloids. The Russian billionaire owner of The Independent and the Evening Standard wrote the following tweet after giving testimony at the Leveson inquiry:

“Forgot to tell Leveson that it’s unreasonable to expect individuals to spend millions of pounds on newspapers and not have access to politicians.”

Fascinating use of the word unreasonable here. Maybe Mr. Lebedev hasn’t quite mastered the British way of not being completely upfront about corruption in politics.

In particular though, this tweet reveals two things. First, the financial struggles in which all newspapers are embroiled is no reason not to regulate ownership. If anything, they have opened the door to a new class of media moguls who are quite willing to use newspapers not for their commercial value but for their political clap. Make no mistake, despite dwindling profits, newspapers are more relevant today than ever. Most of the biggest titles are reaching more audiences than they ever have before, courtesy of their online editions, and they still play a mean role in the news agenda.

The second insight revealed by this tweet is that newspaper owners have simply come to expect that their investment in news ought to pay off in political input. This is the type of sleaze culture that is far more insidious and far reaching than Cash For Questions or any of the networks of corruption that have undermined British democracy and faith in the three key P’s; politicians, police and press.

If you change the dynamics for ownership you may just change the culture that draws red lines for journalists as much as it does for politicians. In particular, ownership reform could ensure that the most powerful owners of the media are kept at arms-length from the content of their allies. A journalism that is less direct is surely one that is more searching, more questioning more scrutinising. And if accompanied by a new and effective means of funding, it could provide meaningful support for real journalism – safe from the trappings and pressures of corporate media.

We need ownership reform now because trust in the integrity of our most sacred institutions is at an all time low. Because the existing plurality regime has proved entirely unfit for purpose. In our increasingly mobile, technologically dependent and work centred lifestyle, the media, and indeed the mainstream media, have become essential ways to convene and converse as citizens in a democracy. For too long we’ve allowed that space to be annexed by narrow corporate interests serving shareholders and moguls over citizens and public. We ought to reclaim that space, we need to reclaim it and we need to do it now.

Justin Schlosberg, Media Reform Coalition

Catch more of what we heard at the Media Reform Rally tomorrow.

by Kam Sandhu @KamBass

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