Where J’accuse selects four of the choiciest clips from the world of online media. there’s more where these came from. If only we had the time.
Austin the Hip (not to be confused with Augustine of Hippo)
On a final point, I would like to have a word with a fellow columnist. Up until last Sunday (it is Friday evening now!) I had a look at this columnist’s blog. I must admit that I am totally against blogs and this was the first I had ever had a look at. I think blogs are really a whole load of nonsense and a waste of time (although I have now unfortunately taken to have a look at them). But I must say: “Take it easy!” (Times, Tuesday 9th February)
Champion of the Blinkered Nationalists Club Austin Sammut (Labour Leads in a way, Times 09.02.10) finds a contorted way to tell Daphne “Take it easy”. I Can’t Believe Its Not Manwel Cuschieri. You’ve got to love the “I am totally against blogs” bit which essentially validates the average Joe Public perception of the value of Austin Sammut’s opinion – as informed and hip as a Cathusian monk.
Cut to the Chase
If I am a journalist who indulges in the cult of the news personality, I have no right to argue for special treatment if others examine my private life. If I present a television chat show or write a personal comment column in a newspaper I must accept the risks associated with fame. (Times, Wednesday 10th February)
Former journalist and member of BA advisory Committee Tonio Farrugia tiptoes on the principles involved in the public/private divide. Something tells me the “personal comment column” will not go down too well in some quarters. The notion of “Fair Comment” at law is bound to get twisted and torn in the public debate, especially by those who get a kick out of denigrating lawyers and anything legal – for want of a proper argument. Private? Sure – as private as your biggest fan.
Government by Proxy
But it emerges clearly now that Lawrence Gonzi’s stated position only came about after the blistering campaign of allegations by Caruana Galizia on Musumeci and Scerri Herrera, on her personal blog. (Maltatoday, Sunday 7th February)
Maltatoday Editorial speculates that our Prime Minister’s decision making is based solely on the contents of a pink column. A bit of a contradiction really because MT itself admits that everybody who is somebody had some form of information on the private lives of the persons involved before it appeared on the Runs. The question remains: Why Now? Why is Robert an uncomfortable partner now? Why is the noise and fracas that leads to police investigation being made now? Private lives, public concerns? That last question may lead us much further than the pink cloud many are enjoying at the moment. Frankly we’re beginning to see where the du Plessis fixation is coming from.
He reiterated his pledge to introduce a Bill on divorce and give Labour MPs a free vote if elected to power, because he believed that everyone should have the right to a second chance if their first marriage did not work out. There was no place in the movement, he said, for people who were prejudiced against gays or against those who wanted to form a family after their first marriage had broken down. (Times, Tuesday 9th February)
The free vote myth perpetrated. Labour decides to forge ahead with the empty promise of a “free vote”. When a real party believes in something then, once it is in government, it proposes and enacts laws based on the principles it backs and the deal with the electorate. Labour’s ”free vote” offer reminds me of Corrado Guzzanti’s character Brunello Robertette when he says “Non guardo in faccia a nessuno, ho rispetto per gli omosessuali e i negri purché i due fenomeni non si presenta contemporaneamente.” Funny? Not really. Progressive? As progressive as the spinners in Blackburn in 1768.