Jeremy Corbyn and his team are often attacked for a supposed ‘failure’ to communicate. It’s one of the chief lines of attack by right-wing Labour figures, along with the pundits and media that support them.
But is it really a failure – or a blackout?
Yesterday morning, Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell issued a press release outlined enormous tax-cuts for the wealthy that came into force on Saturday. Here’s what it says:
If it looks unfamiliar, there’s a reason for that. £20 billion in tax cuts by 2022. Two billion pounds just next year to major corporations. All while cutting benefits massively to working people struggling to make ends meet – the so-called ‘JAMS’ (just about managing) that Theresa May talked about when she moved into Downing Street – and promptly forgot.
The tax paid by huge corporations is of massive public interest. The money in our pockets is of huge public interest. Surely the newspapers would mention it. Ok, you might expect no better from the Mail, Express, Telegraph etc. But some. The Independent chose to run a huge splash on Labour’s supposed troubles:
The tax cuts don’t even make one of the small panels. The Guardian? Nope: So-called ‘Labour’ newspaper, the Daily Mirror? No: And so it goes. What’s more relevant to the everyday lives of the vast majority of people in this country – speculation about Labour’s electoral prospects or cuts to the income of millions in order to fund huge tax cuts to a few rich people and companies?
As McDonnell said, the priorities of Theresa May and her party are made clear by the tax cuts and benefit cuts. And the priorities of the media are equally clear today in their decision to hide what’s actually important and focus on what’s not – to black out Labour’s message and either ignore it altogether or replace it with anything, anything negative they can come up with. And then blame Corbyn and his team for their ‘failure’ to get their message across.
It’s clearer than ever that the media are in concert when it comes to the narrative they want to convey about Labour – and to hell with facts and truth.
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