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Now This, THIS Is How You Deal With the Media!

By Petr Knava | Politics | June 22, 2022 |

By Petr Knava | Politics | June 22, 2022 |


mick-lynch-media-header.jpg

Britain is a failed state. If it wasn’t for the racist and empire-enabling connotations of that term meaning it is only ever focused in one direction, it would be used to describe the country all the time. An incredibly wealthy nation in which the vast majority are subjected to ever-worsening living standards while the wealthy few at the top continue to grow their wealth at record rates. A revolving door between industry and Parliament that, alongside cosy family-and-friends relationships between the two spheres, ensures that there is a continuous stream of wealth transferal from the the already-impoverished public to the already-rich elites. Regressive taxes and tax haven enabling policies and structures, collapsing wages, soaring food bank usage, hostile immigration environments, child poverty, industrial scale arms dealing, imperial wars of ‘post-colonial’ aggression, racist insitutions, deliberately underfunded and eviscerated public services—you could go on and on. The instutional purpose of the UK has moved fully away from any notion of looking after its citizens. All it knows now how to do is enable the mass looting of the public sphere so as to enrich the few and make it easier for a bunch of world-destroying corporations to carry on doing exactly that.

Party politics doesn’t make a difference as both sides subscribe to the same fundamental worldview (with a few notable, aberrant exceptions among the ranks) of the neoliberal supremacy of ‘the market’, and the one institution that is in theory meant to hold the powerful to account—the media—remains woefully, almost comically, uninterested in doing so. The UK mainstream capitalist media is a textbook example of the ways corporate media serves to protect the powers that be and the structures that uphold them. Before I stepped away from political coverage for my own peace of mind, I went off on the UK media, time and time again—so I won’t do so here as I’d just be repeating myself. Instead what I’ll do is share one of the exceedingly rare bright and hopeful moments that sometimes happens in that media.

It’s been happening the past few days, courtesy of one Mick Lynch, the Secretary-General of the National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT). The RMT are currently holding the biggest strike in several decades, in protest against a government and a corporate system that wants to worsen their working conditions and add them to the long list of people whose pay and life quality is flushed down the toilet by British capitalism. The UK has one of the most union-hostile legal environments in Europe. It’s one of the worst violators of union rights on the continent, and the number of unions left that have the strength to fight for its members is a fraction of what it once was. The RMT, however, is one of those unions, and so naturally the corporate media—stenographer of the powerful and playground for insipid poshos—has been hellbent on trying to turn the public against the RMT, barely covering the actual reasons for the strike while instead framing issues in ways straight out of the Tory playbook. It’s not working: 54% of the public currently support the strike. Mick Lynch will be a part of that, as his media appearances have been a masterclass in how to deal with a corrupt and complicit machine. Here’s a selection of Twitter coverage to brighten your day like it did mine.

Victory to the RMT! Unconditional support for all strikes.



Petr is a staff contributor. You can follow him on Twitter.



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