UK journalists have been sucked into ‘Johnsons fake news machine’, writes Peter Oborne in an Open Democracy article. He claims the British media – including the Daily Mail which he is now leaving – of being complicit in ‘peddling Downing Street’s lies and smears’.
He particularly blames anonymous ‘sources’ for this. Journalists hungry for quotes suck up leaks given to them by un-named Downing Street informants and splash them over twitter and front pages. The prime minister and his cabinet remain aloof. They hide behind the excuse that they don’t comment on leaked information. But it’s anonymous informers at the heart of government who are responsible for this deluge.
Oborne writes that the UK media is ‘allowing the prime minister to get away with lies and dishonesty which they would never have permitted to his predecessor, Theresa May, let alone Jeremy Corbyn.’
This is no surprise to this site. Spin has always been a feature of politics but it's reached dizzying new heights since Johnson entered Number Ten.
Again, this is no surprise. Behind Johnson stands Michael Gove and his former adviser Dominic Cummings. ‘Such men are dangerous’. Former schools minister David Laws claimed Cummings was behind the deceptive spin coming from the DfE under Gove’s tenure.
These same tactics have now infected Johnson's Government. The media is not doing its job if it doesn’t challenge them.
FOOTNOTE: Oborne is compiling a dossier of the ‘lies, falsehoods, misrepresentations and fabrications of Boris Johnson and his Downing Street machine’ which he hopes to publish shortly.