[Re: Cartels of politicians do not serve the public interest, yesterday]
I must confess that, faced with a very challenging set of economic problems, I strugged to understand the fuss around Leveson and press regulation. It’s fair to say that this piece has persuaded me that I should be more concerned. I don’t mean so much the specific question of press regulation per se (though I bow to no one in my defence of freedom of speech and expression), but as an example of the greater malaise it signifies.
Political collusion against liberty is not just a problem in the UK. The same thing is happening across Europe – not least in my home country the Czech Republic. Unfortunately, it seems things will have to get worse before people realise the fundamental mistakes they’ve made.
The public might be more sympathetic to a free press if newspapers were not accountable to politically-motivated owners. And what do so many papers do with the freedom they have? They pry into the private lives of both celebrities and ordinary people like the McCanns. A press that wants to provide factually correct news or analysis will have no trouble in providing a noble and invaluable public service. Gossip rags might have more of a challenge.
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Bizarre how some people upset by Cyprus wealth grab are same people who advocate annual mansion tax wealth grab at home.
The UK sits at number 29 on the world press freedom index. Below Cyprus and Uruguay and just above Ghana and Suriname.
In Cyprus, the EU has destabilised its currency and banks further, and has failed to get the cash it was after. Impressive.
It can’t be stressed often enough that the EU insistence on breaking Cyprus saver deposit guarantees poses dangers for all EU banks.