Damned if you do, damned if you don’t

Latest posts by Edward Case (see all)

I don’t care how my laptop, my TV, my car or my phone function. I just switch them on and expect them to work. If one doesn’t, all I want is for it to be fixed immediately, then when it isn’t find someone to blame.

That’s how people tend to be with politicians too, although as I don’t consider them to be essential to my ability to function, less so in my case.

But it struck me as the Government’s supposedly world leading track and trace app turned out to be as much use as a chocolate teapot that as media rent-a-gobs lined up to accuse them of incompetence yet again, this was always going to be a no win situation.

When Apple and Google first approached a Boris lackey about using their tech there were immediate rumblings from all the usual channels about the wisdom of allowing two companies who already have considerable weight to be handed even more power – afterall, if there is indeed a cabal of multinational corporations who really run the world behind the scenes, then Apple and Google would surely be amongst that elite group.

Had the government immediately agreed to it, then the reaction, certainly from the left, would have made the Huawei 5G row look like a playground spat.

But now, because of the obsession with everything having to be politicised, it’s Boris’s fault for not getting into bed with them in the first place because everyone knew the one they opted for was going to be a dud.

The same applies to the decision to extend free school meal vouchers into the summer holidays.

If the Tories had stuck to their guns – and anyone over 50 knows a whole squad of Marcus Rashfords wouldn’t have persuaded Thatcher to change her mind – they would have been accused of not listening to the mood of the nation.

Now that they have listened they still can’t win because it’s considered a U-turn, or should I say it’s called that by the party politically obsessed.

Party politics detracts from the issues facing the world. The crisis, and its resolution, is far more important than any party dogma.

It disturbs me that I find myself in a position of defending the Government, especially in a week where health minister Matt Hancock showed such a complete lack of understanding or empathy over the gesture of solidarity shown by footballers and officials in taking the knee at kick-off for 8 seconds in a show of solidarity against racial violence.

But if I want to maintain my responsibility of holding authority to account impartially I also have to accept when they are being hung out to dry, no matter how uncomfortable that feels.

An embarrassment to the profession

Lockdown has really brought home just how much of the internet is taken up with utter dross.

Google gathers together clickbait stories from the websites of celebrity culture obsessed tabloids and magazines along with running intrusive commentary about poor Kate Garraway and lazy features that are more than 50 years out of date written as if it’s something we didn’t already know.

So all the crap is in one place.

But while I can stomach the latest Emily Atack selfie, smartphone snap of Jodie Comer at B&Q or even Amanda Holden with her norks half out, my blood boils when confronted with articles where the writer obviously has absolutely no knowledge of the subject matter, couldn’t be bothered to do their research and has consequently vomited out utter tripe devoid of any facts.

One in particular had me swearing at my screen this week when a well documented incident during the filming of The Beatles documentary Let It Be was twisted out of all reason to the point where an argument between Paul and George over a guitar part (it’s there on film for all to see so either the writer didn’t bother watching it or doesn’t know his Lennon from his McCartney) which resulted in George leaving the sessions for 10 days was written as a fight between John and George which resulted in punches being thrown.

The only correct part of the entire piece was John’s flippant comment to the others about getting Eric Clapton in.

It was also claimed that George and John’s friendship survived up to Lennon’s death – wrong again – at the time of John’s murder Harrison and Lennon had been estranged for years (nothing to do with the events of January 1969) and it has always been a huge regret for Paul that George had not been able to make amends with their bandmate before his death in 1980.

It embarrasses me that these idiots rewriting history through their own ineptitude call themselves journalists.

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Edward Case

Columnist