Friday, February 12, 2010

Spinning Tears

There has been a lot written about whether or not the interview with Gordon Brown (due for broadcast on Sunday) is an electioneering stunt or not. Few doubt his tears are genuine over the loss of his new born baby, 8 years ago but the timing of the interview, so close to the general election, raised eyebrows.

Now, call me naive, but when I first heard about the interview, and the weeping, I didn't think it was an overtly political move. Sure, they were attempting to show Brown's human side, but it seemed too cynical to suggest this was blatent electioneering.

However, the subsequent heavy leaking, last weekend, of the details of the interview, focusing primarily on his emotional responses, makes it look more like a spin operation. It looked like they wanted an early blast of coverage followed by a second, after the broadcast.

My expectation, therefore, was that we'd hear nothing more until after the broadcast this Sunday. But no...

Enter arch-spin meister, Alastair Campbell on Andrew Marr's show last Sunday. That performance ensured continued discussion throughout the week about not just Campbell's "tears" (I didn't actually see any) but Brown's, and general discussions about men showing emotion in public etc. All very attractive coverage for a party that has already identified the female vote as a potential growth area for them. Personally, I think it was a mistake. Most of the women I know were turned off by what they saw as Campbell's insincere emotional acting. But you can see how Labour spin doctors are thinking. They'll be hoping Brown's weeping will be more heart rending for being genuine and about an undeniably tragic event.

So, after all this I'm starting to get cynical. But really, would Mr Brown really stoop so low as to use this personal tragedy for political advantage? I still couldn't believe that. I despise the man for how he's run (and ruined) this country, bullied and lied his way through government etc. But this? No. It can't be.

But today I notice that, despite having comprehensively covered the same details last weekend, the BBC is now plugging the story again, two days prior to the broadcast and adding nothing significant to what was spun to them a week before.

This smacks of further spinning by Labour and acquiescence by the BBC. This goes for any other channel that covers this story so needlessly today or tomorrow. I note the BBC website had the story up as the main headline in their political section. Is a rehashing of week old news really the most important political story today?

It's not as if this is even self publicity for a BBC programme as the interview will be going out on ITV.

It is still shocking just how easily manipulated our media is by this government.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

No comments:

Post a Comment