Iain Martin, writing on CapX, bemoans the inability of the press to question politicians during the current general election; especially at stage-managed public appearances, whilst complaining bitterly that morning press conferences are now a thing of the past with only Ukip continuing to provide such events.
Martin’s article poses the question: why is the British media so supine in the face of control from the big parties – but has not the British media been so for ages? When journalists are allowed to question political figures, such questions that are asked are poor to say the least.
When questioning Cameron, for example, they could ask him how he has ensured that politicians are the servants of the people, not their masters, when on not one measure he and his government has introduced have the people been able to agree or reject such decisions. In that regard, they could then ask whether, bearing that point in mind, representative democracy really serves the people to their best interest. They could ask him about his claims to have vetoed an EU treaty, especially when there was no EU treaty to veto. They could ask him about his claim to have cut the EU budget, when it is obvious he did not. They could ask him about his wish to repatriate powers from the EU when such powers cannot be so repatriated. They could ask him why he complains about excessive EU regulation when the EU is only transposing standards which have been agreed at UN bodies at which this country does not have its own seat and thus cannot speak for itself.
It is tad rich for Iain Martin to complain about the media being ‘supine’, when commentators such as he are just as guilty of dereliction of their duty; which is to hold politicians to account on a day-to-day basis – particularly as the people, under representative democracy, cannot.
Is it any wonder this general election campaign is ‘lifeless’when there exists a political class, that in common with the media, seem so bereft of the knowledge required on matters about which they both speak and write?