Tuesday, 18 January 2011

bridge toll

I wasn't going to blog about the Liz Jones piece in the Daily Mail, especially after it went viral on places like Twitter, largely because I couldn't think what could possibly be said about such a horrifically misguided effort.  But I like Liz Jones's writing.  I like her, although I have never met her.  She does appear to be a bit bonkers, yes, but in a good way, and it makes her stuff interesting.  At first I thought the article was taking the piss - Liz was not impressed by the pub, the Bristol Ram, where Joanna Yeates had a drink on the last night of her life, apparently because they couldn't spell "Laurent Perrier" correctly, and Joanna must have been aspirational because she bought a top-of-the-range pizza from Tesco.  I was laughing at first.  But Liz Jones does not do irony.  And a murder is nothing to laugh at.  And when Liz Jones wrote that she put a button in as payment of the Clifton bridge toll, I knew she had lost it.  You might try not to pay the full amount in a place like that, if you had no change and were in a hurry, we have probably all done something similar - but you wouldn't write about it in a national newspaper.   And even so, do these people not have editors?  What were they all thinking of?  Liz Jones wrote that if measures were taken to improve the safety of public spaces this might mean, unfortunately, that the nice antique street lamps would be replaced by ugly modern ones (irrelevant anyway, because Joanna Yeates was apparently killed in, or abducted from, her own home by someone she opened the door to and therefore presumably knew).

Lots of people have had fun with this piece.  One tweet I enjoyed pretended to be Liz Jones in Anne Frank's attic, saying "hmmm, I would put in a master bedroom and wet room here".  But it is not fun.  If I were Joanna Yeates' family I would at the very least be getting the Press Complaints Commission involved.  No-one has yet been charged with the murder.  And it is time someone was.  The Mail claims, mostly correctly, to have its finger on the pulse of Britain.  Not this time.  Of course not every murder victim attracts public sympathy.  Women are murdered and the media take no notice, often because they are poor, black, prostitutes or all three.  But not this time.

You have got it very very wrong, Mr Mail.


dreamingspire said...

Better, surely, to just not read the Mail? Not worth the cost of the electricity that has been used to develop and distribute and read your critique of such an unpleasant piece.

Anonymous said...

The Daily Mail is a good paper. It does not impose a three line whip on its columnists - even if, as in this case - I don't agree with the piece.

Anonymous said...

The Daily Mail is not a good paper. It is full of bile and desperately poor journalism.

Anonymous said...

Sorry - I beg to differ. It is not full of bile.The Guardian is full of bile. The DFaily Express is full of waste product.
The jorunalism in The Daily Mail is usually excellent. You might not LIKE Ann Leslie, Quentin Letts, Stephen Glover, Max Hastings, Melanie Phillips, Janet Street Porter, Andrew Alexander and even Liz Jones -- but you cannot accuse them of being poor writers or bad journalists.

Now - were we to switch over to The Daily Mirror - who is calling it for McGuire?
And is there a journlaist on The Sun?

The Daily Telegrpah at least boasts the Heff.

But, really, The Mail wins hands down.


End of.

Anonymous said...

Please don't be sorry and it is not "end of" at all. You conveniently failed to mention the risible Richard Littlejohn and the utterly despicable Jan Moir.

Anonymous said...

Rightee Ho!!
Kelvin Mckenzie!

Rebecca Brookes!

Patrick O'Hennessy!

Sarah O'Grady!!
Decca Aikenhead!!

Alice Thomson!!

Andrew Rawnsley!!

Matthew D'Ancona!!

Jane Shilling!!

Deborah Ore!!

Carole Midgely!!

And your fave rave out of these paper sribblers?

See Augusrus Carp on the correrct usages of English.

None write for Her Majesty's Daily Mail.
If you'd like a further list of page wasters who write for other papers, I am more than happy to oblige.

Oh - sorry!
Victoria and Giles Coren and Celia Walden.