Posted by Lexington Green on June 15th, 2004 (All posts by Lexington Green)
Jim Bennett recently offered the following bracing analysis of the EU elections, which I now put before our readers with his permission.
The entirely predictable but still breathtakingly brazen spin of the US liberal media on the British European elections continues to demonstrate the need for alternative channels of information, particularly the blogosphere.
I just heard NPR describe the election results as “British voters punishing Blair over Iraq”, echoing the Washington Post and NY Times. This has become the official line. Any sane editor would choose to lead with a headline grounded in actual factual analysis, such as:
“Three Pro-War British parties take 67% of vote, push anti-war party to fourth place”; or
“New anti-EU party displaces Liberal Democrats as Britain’s Third Party”; or
“British Voters Back War but Punish Blair over Europe”; or
“BBC Host Fired for Political Incorrectness Leads Europe Rebels to Victory”; or
“Liberal Democrats Play Anti-War Card with Meager Results; or
“Britain: Only European Country with Pro-War Government *and* opposition party, now sees rise of third pro-war party, eclipsing antiwar party.” or
“Euroskeptic Parties Take Majority of Vote for First Time.”
All of these are factually true and would seem interesting angles purely from a journalistic point of view. Did we see any of them? Ha!
The really interesting thing about this election was that the multiplicity of parties permitted a very precise interpretation of voting intentions. Pro-Blair, pro-war, pro-EU? Easy — vote Labour. Anti-Blair, anti-EU, pro-war? Vote Tory. Really, really anti-EU and anti-Blair, and pro-war? Vote UKIP. Anti-Blair, anti-EU, anti-war? Vote Green. Anti-Blair, anti-war, pro-EU? Vote LibDem. Anti-foreigner, anti-immigrant? Vote BNP. There’s really no excuse for misreporting voter intentions in this election.
The majority British voter distrusts Blair, dislikes the EU, but supports the war despite not-unjustifiable suspicions that Blair’s case for the war involved plenty of spin. But don’t expect this to be reported in the US mainstream media. Much less taken into account in formation of US policy.
Good thing we have the blogosphere. The truth is out there.