The good, the bad and the ugly debt of the truth
We are in dangerous waters, our Government’s secrets and inabilities are being kept from us, as they have always been; only now these shortcomings are being repackaged and rebranded by some of our media and sold to us as ‘news’…
Lies seem to define Downing Street and its echoes in Whitehall, sent to us through dark printed letters on colourful pages of some of our newspapers, online and via T.V screens and radio waves.
The pandemic is a story where it doesn’t really matter who the heroes are and who is to blame outside of Downing Street and Whitehall in London, but the government and some media are creating those they want to blame and those they want to applaud for their political gains, to get away from accountability. They are responsible for many deaths. It is the government that is conditioning people with blame with either staying home to save the NHS (National Health Service) or it will hold them accountable for overwhelming the system. As if it were, we the people who decided to defund the NHS since 2010 when the conservative party set foot in Downing Street. As if it was we the people who agreed to privatise parts of its services and offer them to Donald Trump’s corporate administration in Washington DC.
So many facts are out there, to be found, an investigation of the Sunday Times of London revealed some of it, but the government’s response is once again, couched in lies; perhaps in a bid to make us no longer remember that it (the lie) is even there. But it is, still there. Every lie the people form from Whitehall to Downing Street, is a debt to the truth.
To be on the side of we the people who consume the information from the print, online and broadcast media with the government being the only mass producer of the news, is to be naive. We are led to believe that we are told the truth and nothing but the truth, but then the confusion of our understanding about which one is the truth is when some of the majority of the press is selling paid for, directed and opinionated information as news. There’s no value to it. There’s no benefit to it.
The unknown is often the source of fear and panic. Hence why it is very difficult to not panic, hence why it is very difficult to regard the government’s guidance, especially when they chose to let the corporations challenge Public Health England and the World Health Organisation’s guidance to curb the spread of Coronavirus pandemic in Britain.
I spent two days in April in Coventry’s Crackley Woods and witnessed the brutal violence of what HS2 Ltd workers were doing to nature, by not staying home, not keeping social distance with police and private bailiffs verbally threatening, physically hurting local residents and environmental activists who wanted them to stop working fearing they could bring and transmit the virus among the local residents.
I remember a conversation with local resident Victoria who said: “… they come from all over the country. They go home for weekends, they come back and shop in our supermarkets, they sleep in our hotels, they don’t keep the distance, they are putting us all at risk.” One day after my visit to Crackley Woods, government gave HS2 Ltd notice to proceed.
The government who says it cares for people is, yes you guessed it, is lying. They don’t care. And the debt to the truth of their lies will likely be paid by the local residents who are unfortunate enough to be living across the British lands where the HS2 construction is on-going.
The debt to the truth of the lies of the British Conservative government is being paid by over 16,000 dead Brits and those dying every day since Covid19 hit British shores.
Dying doctors and nurses are paying the debt to the truth of the lies of Boris Johnson, Michael Gove, Nigel Farage & Co when they chose not to deliver the promised £350/million per week for the NHS during Brexit campaign in 2016 when they also blamed immigrants, who suddenly now are our important heroes that we need to save our lives, deliver our food and medicine, as well as pick our fruits and care for our elderly in the time of crisis.
The Government keep telling us that they care about people, they said that we would be living a quality life with joy and happiness against a lifestyle of “live to work and work to pay bills”, but the truth doesn’t care about what they say. It doesn’t care about their opinionated information that they keep selling them to us as news.
The debt of the government lies to the truth will be paid by us, me and you.
The freedom of the press is not primarily to amuse and entertain the government or members of public, not to emphasize the trivial and the sentimental, but to inform the public opinion, to arouse, to reflect, to state our dangers and our opportunities, to indicate our crises and our choices, to lead, mould, educate, and even anger politicians and public opinion. This means greater coverage, scrutiny and analysis of government claims. It means greater attention to improved understanding of the news. It means that government at all levels must meet its obligation to provide people with the fullest possible information outside the narrowest limits of national security. It means government should be asked to prove what they say.
The printing press, the recorder of the humanity’s deeds, the keeper of our conscience, the courier of our news should be looking for strength and assistance, it should help humanity to be what it was born to be: responsible, free and independent.
Vedat Xhymshiti, is a London based journalist, news and documentary photographer from Kosovo and a former war correspondent. His work is published by the NYTimes, TIME, Der Spiegel, Guardian and Paris Match. He is currently focused in observing government management of the Pandemic crisis and extremely concerned about the freedom of the press and the state and function of Britain’s highly commercialised press.