Monday, October 27, 2008

Are You Downturner Or Recessionist?

A civil war of words between Downturners and Recessionists is looming, as Brown and his government try to get their economic message across. That darn word "downturn" is turning up again, as part of the government propaganda. 

The government is using its state broadcasting arm, the BBC, to deliver the biased message but no one is fooled by Tweedledum and Tweedledee.

The whole of the country knows and feels we're on the brink of a recession, but the cosy use of the word 'downturn' has a reassuring ring about it. 

Using 'downturn' is rather strange and surreal. No one apart from Brown, the BBC, and the New Labour lackeys are using the word. Political journalists and commentators, for sure, but only to take the p*ss. 

On Friday, the BBC devoted a whole day's news coverage to what they euphemistically called the "downturn". BBC editors were forced to defend their choice of the word with this priceless piece of condescension over recession: "as soon as we're in one, you'll hear from us."

The Orange Party could smell a rat. The BBC does not just come out with a word "downturn" without first checking with its political masters - and its business editor, Robert Peston. 

And so it was. On Sunday, full page newspaper adverts from the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES) appeared and sure enough that word 'downturn' popped up. 

Using words like "in these times of economic downturn" and "even in these difficult times", the advert read like a piece of Brownspeak. 

The ad was signed off by the usual suspects of government lackeys and hangers on, including the chairmen of BT and M&S and of course New Labour's favourite trade unionist, Brendan Barber of the TUC.

Today all was revealed. In a startling piece of party political broadcasting ahead of the Glenrothes by-election, the BBC reports a speech by Brown to business leaders in which he tried to justify his reckless borrowing. 

And yes, there it is. That darn word 'downturn'. In the report introduction, as a Brown quote, in a stumbling and stuttering droning video and a party political broadcast.

According to the BBC: "Gordon Brown has defended his plans to increase government borrowing ... to tackle the economic downturn."

And the great man is quoted: "The very moment in an economic downturn ... is no time to slow down welfare reform." 

Brown and the government are staking their reputation and political futures on the outcome of the Glentrothes by-election and the prime minister is taking an active but not unprecedented part in the campaigning. 

So, just to remind voters in Scotland, the BBC's supposedly economic report still manages to slip in a party political broadcast: 

"Over the weekend, Mr Brown paid a brief visit to Glenrothes in Scotland as part of a by-election campaign and made predictions food and fuel bills would begin to come down next year."

So it will be interesting to see who else drops the word "downturn" into the conversation. 

Downturner or Recessionist? You pays your money and takes your choice. 

The Orange Party has a word of its own to describe the effects of Brown's economic mess - Disaster.

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