Blog Archives

Media 76: in Sky, Business Insider and the Metro, Corbyn’s 52% approval is minimised or unreported

Readers respond to the last post Media 75:

One says that Sky mentioned this poll on Monday and a political commentator used the majority approval result to rubbish Corbyn.

Business Insider is more subtle: whilst acknowledging the correct result, it depreciates it by comparing it with a poll held twelve months ago, heading this with the reflection that party members are beginning to turn on JC.  


Another question was about who was polled and Business Insider gave a lead to YouGov’s agency, Election Data, who explains:

Having been responsible for the YouGov’s Labour leadership polling over the last 18 months, Election Data has asked me to shed some light on how YouGov is consistently able to accurately reflect the membership in these niche elections. Read on here. For YouGov’s Labour leadership polls, they use a number of important demographics:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Social Grade
  • Region
  • Vote in the 2016 Labour leadership election
  • Membership length 

When you look at the full tables, you will note that there are significant differences amongst some of these groups; members who joined before and after Corbyn’s leadership are, for example, very different in their strength of support for Jeremy. This is why it is so important to get the relative sizes of these groups right for each of the bullet points above. If they’re wrong, the overall sample will be wrong and your results will not be accurate of the membership as a whole.

The Metro (hard copy only),scandalously does not mention the majority approval/trust rating, leading its readers to infer from Corbyn’s less favourable votes on other issues that he has completely lost the support of party members. Its headline: “Half of Labour members ‘want Corbyn to quit’ “ – but no mention of over half who trust and support him. It then goes on to speculate about possible successors. A reader’s advice:

Ask your readers to complain to the Sun or any of the other papers who have carried the false story about JC’s tax returns and ask for an apology and correction.

And flood the frankly useless IPSO (regulator which is said to ‘uphold high standards of journalism’) with complaints and see if they actually do anything or just prove themselves a total waste of time that Hacked Off always said they would be.

If any reader really needs explanations for the hostility and misrepresentations surrounding Jeremy Corbyn, emanating from vested interests, they will be summarised in the next post on this site ‘Broken Britain’.





Media 75: Corbyn’s 52% YouGov poll majority goes unreported by MSM

Even YouGov buries this unpopular finding today in its extensive array of small-print spreadsheet pages, instead preferring to focus on another section of the poll.

march-2-yougov-pollBurying bad news: no other intelligible graphic available as yet

At present, only Peter Edwards of Labour List reports, reluctantly no doubt, that Jeremy Corbyn’s supporters (‘camp’) will be cheered by the results of a 1,100 person poll carried out by YouGov for Election Data.

A 52% majority say they will definitely or “probably” back him in any future vote.

Peter Edwards more happily directs readers to the 46% who say they will vote against the “veteran socialist” – youthful Edwards-speak for ‘has been’?

But he sourly admits that “the leader is clearly ahead on the candidate for whom activists would consider backing”. 

Let’s end positively: the intelligent articulate independent minded  Peter Oborne (with reference to the Syria vote) remarked on Corbyn in words which are here paraphrased and applied more generally:

Despite bitter hostility from many on his own side he stands his ground and courteously sets out his honest doubts . . . the only politician who deserves to emerge with an enhanced reputation  –  Jeremy Corbyn.

jc8There is no denying that he emerges as a man of moral courage, integrity and principle. Mr Corbyn performs the role which every leader of the Opposition is expected to perform, according to British constitutional textbooks: he held the Government to account.

At last we have an Opposition leader who does his job by opposing the government and asking the right questions with increasing vigour. Throughout the debates, Jeremy Corbyn is calm, resolute and precise — especially creditable given that he was unsupported by some disloyal Labour MPs.




Media Lens uncovers truths obscured by the BBC – & the role of two PR companies

Reading ML’s (Killing Corbyn) dissection of the role played by BBC News – in particular, its political editor Laura Kuenssberg – recalls the classic display given as she attempted to ‘down’ Jeremy Corbyn last December.

bbc kuenssberg 2

Note the expression of gleeful anticipation

bbc kuenssberg 3

Her second attempt: countered, but still hopeful

bbc kuenssberg 1

But faced with composed good humour and competent answers

bbc kuenssberg 4

The confident façade crumbles and she retires defeated

If you follow this link you will find many revelations, including these:

  • The BBC cited leaked emails received by them, which suggested that Jeremy Corbyn’s office sought to delay and water down the Labour Remain campaign. But, as Carlyn Harvey wrote on The Canary website in detail, the ‘evidence’ was bogus:
  • Anonymous ‘MPs’ were quoted as saying some of their members are contacting them to say they’ve changed their minds about Mr Corbyn – the fervent hope of Blairites.
  • The BBC News told the public that Tom Watson, deputy leader of the Labour Party, had told Corbyn that he must resign. This was false. BBC News quietly retracted the claim without admitting their error. Indeed, BBC News had three significantly different headlines in just twenty:

‘Labour’s Watson tells Corbyn to quit’

‘Tom Watson tells Jeremy Corbyn to consider his position’

‘Tom Watson tells Jeremy Corbyn he faces leadership challenge’

The BBC – and other media – highlighted a staged story about Corbyn being heckled at Gay Pride. In fact, as Craig Murray observed, the ‘heckler’ turned out to be Tom Mauchline who worked on the Liz Kendall campaign for the Labour leadership.

Public relations at its worst?

Tom Mauchline works for the public relations firm Portland Communications whose ‘strategic counsel’ is Alastair Campbell, Blair’s former media chief who helped to sell the illegal invasion-occupation of Iraq. None of this was spelled out in the Guardian report by Heather Stewart, the paper’s political editor. PC was set up in 2001 by a former adviser to Blair. Its clients include the World Economic Forum, the EU, the UK government, Barclays Bank and large companies, including Morrisons and Nestle.

Attempts to unseat Corbyn have been supported by Left Foot Forward Ltd, a company set up by Will Straw, which runs the country’s ‘No. 1 left-wing blog’ of the same name, has attempted to unseat Corbyn. Straw is the son of Jack Straw, a minister in the Blair government.

Being very economical with the truth

Corporate media refrain from mentioning that Corbyn won last year’s leadership election by a ‘landslide’, winning 60% of the vote, more than all the rest of the candidates combined.

Noting that Angela Eagle as a likely leadership contender, they also fail to report that a February YouGov poll found 60% of Labour members would vote for Corbyn in a new leadership race, with 15% supporting Hilary Benn and just 6% supporting Angela Eagle.

Public contempt for the public

As Craig Murray has noted: “The demonstrable public contempt of the public for the political class has been mirrored these last few days by the demonstrable contempt of the political class for the public. This has been obvious in the response to the Brexit vote, and in the Labour parliamentary party’s move against Corbyn. Both are evidence that the political class feel that they should not be directed by a wider public”.

Media Lens’ final comment on the performance of the corporate media

“Any threat to the ‘natural order’ of power brings the schism between private interests and public interests into sharp focus. The heightened, almost farcical, attacks on Corbyn are thus entirely predictable.

“Rather than feeling anguished at this state of affairs, we can regard it is a sign of how nervous and vulnerable the establishment is when an awakened public challenges elite power”.




Jeremy Corbyn: support cited by FT hatchet man

Jim Pickard, in the Nikkei-FT, refers to Corbyn’s backing by unions and party members which will stand him on good stead in the forthcoming two-month leadership contest, ending in early September.

Pickard reports that Corbyn sees himself as a vector for the leftwing forces sidelined under two decades of New Labour dominance and believes that resigning would once again neuter his wing of the party.

Despite a liberal use of derogatory adjectives, Pickard admits that Labour’s new members still overwhelmingly believe in their leader, citing research published on Tuesday, led by Tim Bale, professor of politics at Queen Mary University of London and colleagues from the University of Sussex,

As part of an ESRC-funded project on UK party membership in the 21st century and compiled with the help of YouGov, the field work was carried out among 2,026 members and registered supporters just after the May 2016 elections. Findings included:

  • About 64% of those who joined the party since May 2015 believe Labour is on track to win the next election — or 77% of those who joined since September.
  • More than half of them believe that persistent critics of Mr Corbyn should be deselected, according to the survey by YouGov.
  • 49% of people who joined after the general election believe the membership should have more say over policy, with the figure rising to 54% and 65% respectively among those who joined during and after the 2015 leadership election.
  • 55% of new members believe that MPs who “persistently and publicly criticise the leadership in the media should be deselected”, with the proportion rising to two-thirds (68%) of those who joined after Corbyn was elected as leader.

Some comfort was taken in the finding that only 15% of post-general election members and supporters have taken part in Labour canvassing or helped out a party function and only 28% said they had delivered leaflets.

An informal poll conducted by the writer finds that this is the case when the councillors and MPs requiring this assistance are either cool towards their leader or even hostile. It agreed with the final finding mentioned that an overwhelming majority have joined in campaigning for ‘real’ Labour on social media.