The Beast is right – Private Eye is hopelessly biased against Jeremy Corbyn.
Personally, though, This Writer enjoys the fact that – knowing all about the magazine’s editorial bent – Mr Corbyn chose to be photographed reading it while sitting on the floor of that Virgin Train. What a mixed message that sends out!
The anti-Corbyn slant really is unreadable, and young Mr Hislop might have paused to consider whether it is wise, as it calls into question the validity of other, weightier, articles within the magazine. If he’s determined to be wrong about Corbyn, why can’t he be wrong about dodgy dealings at Sports Direct?
Many of those weightier articles have – as the Beast points out – exposed activities that Mr Corbyn opposes, so it is contradictory to attack him as well, especially with no balancing reportage on his opponents in the Labour Party and beyond.
It would be a shame if I were to have to drop it, as the serious articles offer – or at least, claim to offer – useful insight into the hidden dealings at the black heart of Britain.
But what are we to do, if this rag continues to reject its duties in favour of dogma?
I regularly buy Private Eye, but for the first time in a very long while, I didn’t buy it. I’ve put up a couple of pieces here talking about the very pronounced anti-Corbyn bias there is in the magazine. The ‘In The Back’ section, and its predecessor, ‘Footnotes’, before that exposed the privatisation of the NHS by the Tories and Blair, along with the sell-off of the buildings owned by the Tax Office, the transformation of the schools into increasingly expensive academies and the privatisation of the Royal Mail. The magazine has also attacked the Work Capability Tests, benefit sanctions and workfare. This has all been excellent, but I’ve found this outweighed in recent weeks by the space it gives the Blairites to smear the Labour leader, with no attack on them. There’s a regular strip, ‘Focus on Fact’, which is supposed to expose the dirty dealings of Corbyn and his supporters. This mostly seems to be a rehash of events 30 years or so ago in the 1980s. There have also been pieces attacking The Canary, and smearing the various YouTubers, who didn’t buy Angela Eagle’s lie about the Corbynists throwing a brick through her constituency office window. The Eye attacked them as ‘conspiracy theorists’.
This fortnight’s issue had on its cover a piece about ‘Traingate’, with a headline about Corbyn lying. Now I might be wrong, and the magazine could have been making a critical comment instead about how Corbyn was maligned by the papers yet again, when they reported Virgin Trains’ claim that there were spaces available for him to sit. But I didn’t think so at the time. It looked to me like another in the magazine’s long list of smears. And so I didn’t buy it. I spent part of the money I’d saved instead on a big bar of chocolate. And very nice that tasted too.
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