I come into contact with our political media culture, however distant, I end up feeling a bit grubby on the inside. That’s the truth of the matter, every single time. One of the benefits of writing from outside that culture, is you can limit your contact with it without compromising your ability to discuss it, analyse it or take part. Thank god.
One of the wonderful things about being on the Orwell shortlist this year was the content of the blogs. From Konnolsky and his adventures in the barber shop, Amanda itching beneath her wig, tireless and eloquent campaigning Broken of Britain, the exquisite and unique Rangers Tax Case and the extraordinary Baroque of Hackney. Those blogs were not written by people looking for readers, party favour, or fading has beens hoping for reinvention in a dying media establishment. Few of us have names that will be remembered for more than a blink. Also, thank god.
They are the blogs which mean the political establishment has about 5 minutes left of behaving the way it currently does. They don’t argue within the absurd confines of ‘political debate’. They treat it solely as a source of humour or obfuscation. We now get to have fun with the shit that is flung, and watch the monkeys perplexed. This type of author outnumbers that of the political establishment by a million to one on the internet, and each one has a unique perspective which cannot be predicted and blows away blind lies as soon as it emerges. On the platform which is our political media’s future home. The sight of what happens when someone can’t exercise traditional media privilege is ugly, but as a sign manage the message is over it is glorious. I get the feeling it is what ensures that privilege is never again bestowed.
Those blogs, and mine, showed that the shit flinging monkey wheel and its ridiculously narrow tabloid message is impossible now and that ability is unlikely to be regained. The nasty boys at the heart of that culture are flinging shit as frenetically as they can and will get more hysterical over the coming months as they realise that each of those blogs(and the millions more beside) make their existence pointless and show their output as without merit.
.A blog doesn’t even have to be as good as The Rangers Tax Case, Konnolsky, Beneath the Wig or Baroque In Hackney to do that. The person writing it just has to be able to articulate their existence and have access to the platform our political media made their internet paddling pool. The prize is overseen by the media standards trust. Apt that it is the people who populate the blogging section of that prize, who would help guarantee a return of standards to our political media, I can only see the prize growing in future and becoming more energised.
The Orwell Prize shortlist is always an interesting one to watch and I think the staggering change seen in this year’s content, is nothing compared to what will be seen next year. Leveson alone means power held by the last of the shit flinging monkeys and commentariat roundabout is due to end. We should probably make the most of the absurdity of the shit they fling and have some fun with it.
Maybe it’s because the sun is finally out, but this year has a whole load of horizons possible, which seemed unimaginable a year ago.