Wednesday, 24 September 2008

Promoting bullshit.

Not much occurring at the moment over at the Sun, unless you count their failed attempt to get Cherie Blair to say something disparaging about Gordon at a fringe meeting at the Labour party conference. Despite arranging for the families of murder victims to travel and stress their case that ours is a broken society, including the wonderful Helen Newlove, only Michael Gove agreed, which is hardly a surprise considering he's a Tory front-bencher and is therefore pushing the same nonsense as the newspaper.

Why bother to go in for detailed political analysis though when you can instead print fluff which not only insults your readers' intelligence but also potentially promotes bullshit artists such as fortune tellers and tarot card readers? It's certainly cheap:

"THE Sun was yesterday given a grim prediction of Gordon Brown's political future – from a tarot reader.

We consulted a mystic to forecast the future of the embattled PM before he gave his key speech – billed as make-or-break – at the Labour party's annual conference.

In an eerily accurate moment, Manchester magician Andrew Normansell, 39, laid out the tarot cards and turned over depictions of the Ace of Swords and The Empress – a female figure coming to the rescue.

Just hours later Mr Brown's wife Sarah was heaped in praise after giving an impassioned speech before introducing her husband on to the stage to a thunderous round of applause."

Ah yes, that well-known empress, Sarah Brown, riding to the rescue of her husband! Eerily accurate only in the sense that whichever old bollocks the tarot reader came up with would nonetheless be adapted by the hapless Sun hack tasked with writing up this nonsense.

"Andrew concluded: "Overall, the future for the Labour Party isn't looking good. Come the next general election it will be very much touch and go."

Good grief, really? That falls directly in line with the opinion polls over the last year; there must be something in the tarot after all!

It's worth continuing with this only to highlight something of an inconsistency:

"Our alternative political prediction follows on from last year when we asked a psychic to give her prophesy for Britain's future as Gordon Brown dithered over whether to call a general election.

Gypsy Petulengro made a set of claims at the Tory party conference in Blackpool which spookily appear to be coming true."

Gypsy Petulengro? Doesn't the Sun mean Gipsy Petulengro, as it always usually refers to those who have Roma heritage, like this other Gipsy which predicted a lottery win, because they seem to imagine it excludes them from being potentially prosecuted for inciting racial hate as Gypsies are protected under the various applicable legislation? Still, Gypsy Petulengro is doubtless a nice gypsy, and not the kind that turns up unannounced on land that they just happen to own, and which also happens just happens to be in the vicinity of a cabinet minister's ex-husband's residence, as the Sun reported on back on a slow news day in March. Now if Andrew Normansell had predicted that it might well have been worth writing about...

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