The Independent, Big Oil and me

by Julie Walsh on March 5, 2008

in Blog

A gossip columnist’s libel against spiked in a national newspaper unwittingly revealed a lot about contemporary politics and debate.

During the past week, while the rest of the media went into a tailspin over the Harry-in-Afghanistan news blackout, I experienced a strange little media blackout of my own. On 21 February a gossip columnist at the Independent published an article in defence of green authoritarianism – the government must ‘force us all to shift towards cleaner behaviour’, apparently – in which he described spiked as ‘fake libertarians’, who criticise green hectoring only because we are in the pay of ‘the fossil fuel industry itself’. That’s not true. So I wrote a letter to the Independent clarifying the matter, but they didn’t publish it, on the basis that the author of the article ‘absolutely stands by his story’. That’s nice for him, I said, but his allegations are still untrue, so please publish my correction.

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