An excerpt from my most recent Byline column:
Maybe Fawkes and his blog may still have a role in some future Tory leadership meltdown in years to come. But they can no longer claim any anti-establishment iconoclastic identity. More likely his employees will become further absorbed into the declining tabloid world, and lose traction because of it. I’m sure Staines will not be badly off. Retiring to well-padded obscurity in Ireland to raise his family is hardly a disaster.
But whatever happens, these words should be hung around his neck:
“Journalists are there to “speak truth unto power”. Not trade favours for tittle tattle, not report spin as truth… That is not journalism, that is copy-taking.”
Staines has become the thing he most despised. Rather than speaking truth to power, he’s a mouthpiece for power. He has traded favours for tittle tattle, and reports spin as verity. He’s not a journalist. He’s a copy-taker.