There is an expression that we all use; I used it as well, twice most recently. The expression ‘the writing is on the wall‘, which implies that “there are clear signs that a situation is going to become very difficult or unpleasant“, the stage to a specific warning. Yet I believe that the expression is further than that, I also see it was an approach of something inevitable, yet always in a negative connotation. So when I saw the article (at https://www.theguardian.com/media/2019/aug/16/independent-evening-standard-links-to-saudi-arabia-inquiry-blocked), where we are treated to ‘Court blocks inquiry into Independent and Standard’s links to Saudi Arabia‘, I saw something that has been given exposure before, yet I looked in another direction. And that direction is shown at the very end. The quote: “Since the investment was made the Independent has launched a range of foreign-language websites run by a Saudi publisher that uses its name, raising concerns about editorial oversight given the Middle Eastern kingdom’s poor record on press freedom“, it is here where I see that Jeremy Wright has another agenda. As former Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport of the United Kingdom he knows what is in play, but he is not telling us that, is he? I believe that the expression ‘the writing is on the wall‘ is one that is set in two places and they impact one another. Even when we get back to the origin of the expression, we see a shortening of ‘mene mene tekel upharsin‘, which is of Aramaic origin. Yet how was that staged? We see that some give us: “The point of the moral tale was that Belshazzar couldn’t see the warning that was apparent to others because he was engrossed with his sinning ways“. The subtlety of the biblical wordplay is now somewhat lost on those of us who don’t speak ancient Aramaic, yet a Daniel in a stage set to war could have translated it into its actual meaning: “Mares eat oats and does eat oats and little lambs eat ivy, a kid’ll eat ivy too, wouldn’t you?”
The problem is that the writer is assumed to be on a stage, and in that stage we see writing, we see the text, but we forget that text is more. It is a font, it is a size and collected we see a typeface. We are so used to take the newspapers and merely gobble up the text like it is an ASCII phrase, we forget that the stories are presented, the typeface presents this and newspapers have done so for well over a century. They have been in a stage where they represent themselves as neutral and authoritative, and this style of type has come to represent those attributes. Yet they have not been that for the longest of times, they have had an agenda for decades, WW2 started it and progressed through wars as they maintained facts under the air of neutrality, an air and stage they forsake long ago. In the end, the entire stage of ‘concerns about editorial oversight given the Middle Eastern kingdom’s poor record on press freedom‘ was never an issue. You see, the simplicity here is that people can always change papers. It is when that freedom is not trodden on; it is there that the old owners see the dangers. It is not about what is not presented, it is what is presented and how it is presented. The Russian Evgeny Lebedev, figured that out long ago and now he has arranged that Saudi Arabia and optionally more Middle Eastern players get a seat at that specific table.
The media silenced the truth of a lot of issues in Saudi Arabia and Yemen, now we get the stage where the people will get informed on a lot more of it that is the fear. When we hold a large candle to the media, we see the greed driven faulty and now we optionally see a new player informing all others and that rattled people like Jeremy Wright. We see the events in Yemen, we see a civil war within a civil war and the media is blaming Saudi Arabia to the larger extent, yet we are told half a story at best. Now we will face the stage where Saudi Arabia has a larger voice and it will be heard. The Independent and Evening Standard are too large to ignore and that voice will carry on an international level. And the court case gives us: “The judges ruled that while it was legitimate for the government to have issued an intention to intervene, the final referral should have been made by 1 July“, if there was a true danger the government would have acted sooner, they did not. Now they must face the events that two papers will get a lot more information and the previous times where the media initially disregarded missile strikes in Saudi Arabia will be ignored no mare. We can also question whether the media has failed its readers to a much larger degree, but that would be on the papers that are not the Evening Standard and not the Independent. The accusation is almost ludicrous, the UK has well over 14 larger daily newspapers, if there is real diminished freedom of the press, the other 12 take over and the value of these two papers fall to zero, after which a new owner will come and take over. As I personally see it, the entire oversight is a bogus issue, the fact that Saudi Arabia would now have a typeface that allows them to be heard is another matter, is it not?
So if the writing is actually on the wall, we need to look at the typeface used and who would place the text on the wall in the first place. And that is before we look at: “It was claimed in court that the companies were ultimately part-owned by a Saudi bank with close ties to the government” we can argue that the bulk of the newspapers are owned by banks with close ties to governments on a global scale, to me it all reads and reeks of a stage where the larger players are just too uncomfortable with Saudi Arabia getting a seat at the table, which is a whole new issue on discriminating elements. It is also the slow question that comes to the surface here. As we see: “A spokesperson for the news outlets said they were delighted by the outcome and that the intervention had been “disproportionate to the facts, unfair and a waste of public money“, as such, if we openly demand to see the costs involved for this case, will we be given the actual costs involved? If the UK had only 3 newspapers the stage would have made sense and more important, the chance that Evgeny Lebedev owned any part of it would be out of the question, but that is not the case. There are dozens of papers all over the UK, losing two would not be a huge impact and if Saudi Arabia intervenes with press freedom, a dozen of others take over on the spot diminishing the value of two newspapers, a temporary small market shift at best. A simple fact not given at all, so when we look at the typeface of it, what was this really about? Is it really about Freedom of the press, or is it about stopping Saudi Arabia from getting a larger international voice that is clearly heard all over the UK?
It seems to me that several players are not happy about that last option; we can now hold those players to account for news that was never given to us before.