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Archive for January 26th, 2011

“objectivity”

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I don’t get it. Here’s Laurie Penny today in the NS:

“No sex. No drugs. And no leaders”, the New Statesman‘s cover story this week, tells the intimate story of the winter student uprisings of 2010, putting human faces to the mob that has so terrified the right-wing press. It is the longest and most high-profile feature I’ve worked on to date, but that’s not the only reason it’s been so difficult to write.

Over the past few months I have become, and remain, deeply embedded in the student movement in the UK and Europe. Many of the young people who feature in the piece – on whose activities I’ve been keeping meticulous notes, and who are of a similar age and political attitude to myself – have since become as close to personal friends as observational subjects ever can be. It’s not a question of going native so much as finding all the other natives have suddenly come out of the forest to take on the invaders. This has stretched my objectivity to its limits. I have had to work and rework the article to make sure I was constructing an accurate portrait.

The trajectory of journalistic dispassion is fraught with misunderstanding and lies. Even if utterly dispassionate, objective journalism were an obtainable or desirable standard, I would gladly set that standard aside until such time as I found myself no longer working in a world that contains the dangerous reactionary partiality of the Daily Mail, the Sun and the rest of the Murdoch Empire. It is, nonetheless, important for liberal writers to retain distance where corporate flunkies refuse to, less our romanticism – and left-wing politics are, at heart, always romantic – be mistaken for propaganda.

Hmmm… Someone explain to me how this sort of navel-gazing judiciousness jives with her tweets and facebook updates about “snogging boys” down at the UCL Occupation back in December? Very hard to understand.

If a male journalist was tweeting about getting off with girls at the Occ, he’d be fired no? Dunno, maybe I just take it all too seriously.

(Look, I’d stop. But you should see the volume of email and the like that I get encouraging me to continue….)

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January 26, 2011 at 9:24 pm

Posted in occupations

the misery index

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From Paul Krugman today:

Oh, and the UK: was it “forced to impose painful austerity”? Here’s the interest rate on 10-year UK bonds:

DESCRIPTION

There was no sign of a crisis of confidence in the UK budget before the May election; the Conservative government chose to embark on austerity, it wasn’t forced into it.

Written by adswithoutproducts

January 26, 2011 at 12:24 pm

Posted in austerity, crisis, economics