Saturday, October 23, 2004


There is, as is being told all around the blogsphere, another outrage from the Limey Guardian.

A columnist
Charlie Brooker wrote a screed for the Guardian, spewing all the typical loony liberal garbage about President Bush... only he didn't stop with calling the president a bunch of names...

"Throughout the debate, John Kerry, for his part, looks and sounds a bit like a haunted tree. But at least he's not a lying, sniggering, drink-driving, selfish, reckless, ignorant, dangerous, backward, drooling, twitching, blinking, mouse-faced little cheat. And besides, in a fight between a tree and a bush, I know who I'd favour."

"On November 2, the entire civilised world will be praying, praying Bush loses. And Sod's law dictates he'll probably win, thereby disproving the existence of God once and for all. The world will endure four more years of idiocy, arrogance and unwarranted bloodshed, with no benevolent deity to watch over and save us. John Wilkes Booth, Lee Harvey Oswald, John Hinckley Jr - where are you now that we need you?"

Yes, this is the SAME Guardian* that tried to interfere in our election by sending political letters to the citizens of Clark County, Ohio encouraging them to vote for Kerry. They were shocked at the displeasure of US citizens and amount of mail and email they got expressing outrage**. Predictably they focused on the few positive letters from the lunatic left, but they did call the letter writing campaign off.

I wonder what kind of shock and awe they will feel when they find out how we feel about one of their columnists calling for the assassination of our president? They asked their readers to be polite when they wrote the citizens of Clark County, Ohio, USA. I don't feel quite so benign... I say let loose the dogs of war or as
Watcher Of Weasels puts it... unleash HELL!


Emails are listed below. The top three or four are the most pertinent. But go ahead and send a few or send a bunch, but make sure you tell the Guardian what we think about Brits who advocate murdering our president.

Generic addresses:

Simon Waldman
Director of Digital Publishing
Tel: +44 (0) 207 713 4353Fax: +44 (0) 207 713 4447

John Hooper Central Europe Correspondent
Anna Sinfield 020 7239 9818
Isabel Milner020 7239 9602
Diane Heath020 7239 9936

Books editor
Politics editor
Media editor
Football editor
Film editor
Jobs editor
Work editor
Education editor
Money editor
Shopping editor
Travel editor
Arts editor
Society editor

Send and send and send and send!

Jonathan Freedland
Clare Dyer
Polly Toynbee
Dan Glaister
Ian Katz
Isabel Hilton
James Fenton
Stephen Brook
Simon Tisdall
George Monbiot
Jackie Ashley
Malcolm Dean
Steve Bell
Eric Allison
Matt Wells
Dan Milmo
Richard Norton-Taylor
Alan Travis
Conal Urquhart
Marcel Berlins
Mike Hough
Audrey Gillan
Ewan MacAskill
Lee Glendinning
Jason Burke
Michael Billington
David Brindle
Lyn Gardner
Adrian Searle
Owen Gibson
Jonathan Jones
Clare Cozens
Judith Mackrell
Jason Deans
Dominic Timms
Jonathan Glancey
Alexis Petridis
John Fordham
Andrew Clements
Tim Ashley
Nancy Banks-Smith

My Letter
First you try to interfere in the US elections and now you print a column promoting the murder of our president? HOW DARE YOU! No matter how maniacally you hate President Bush or his policies there is absolutely NO justification whatsoever for you to advocate the assassination of OUR president! OR allow anyone printed in your newspaper to do so. This is the most inept journalism I have ever witnessed and I have seen the ultimate in asinine yellow journalism in my time.

Charlie Brooker profile
Co-Founder and Creative Director - Zeppotron
Charlie Brooker has worked as a writer, journalist, cartoonist, TV and radio presenter.
He created TV Go Home, a hugely successful comedy website that was turned into a book and a TV series. His TV writing credits include the 11 O'Clock Show, Brasseye Special, TV Go Home, Unnovations, and The Art Show. He has a weekly TV column in the Guardian and is currently writing a new Channel 4 series with Chris Morris.

*What we WERE thinking
Hundreds of readers have expressed varying degrees of fury, incomprehension and tentative support for G2's Clark County campaign, and you'll no doubt be eager to read the features editor's own explanation of why Operation Clark County was launched - and why "somewhere along the line, the good-humoured spirit of the enterprise got lost in translation".

"Blimey," writes Ian Katz. "We set out to get people talking and thinking about the impact of the US election on citizens of other countries, and that is what we have done. For the Guardian to have experienced such a backlash to an editorial project is extraordinary, but the number of complaints [is] thoroughly outdone by the number of people who engaged positively with the project." Do read the article - and do continue to blog: despite the abuse, we're still reading.

Special report US elections 2004
Related articles Clark County: the best lettersIan Katz on Operation Clark County
Have your say13.10.2004: How you can have a say in the US election13.10.2004:
A brief guide to Clark County 13.10.2004:
Dear Clark County voter: three prominent Britons reach out 13.10.2004:
How to contact the US media

** "For more than a week the Guardian has been under an unprecedented email bombardment from the United States. The stimulus was an exercise mounted by G2, the tabloid second section of the paper, to put individual voters of undeclared party allegiance in the presidential election in Clark County, Ohio - narrowly balanced between Republicans and Democrats - in touch with individual Guardian readers. ...

... By my calculations well over 5,000 emails, predominantly condemnatory of the exercise, had been poured into various Guardian queues by the middle of this week. Emails received by individual journalists accounted for about 3,000 of those. ...

The majority of emails received up to Thursday, whether from supporters of George Bush or John Kerry, were critical (only about 1 in 10 voiced support). It was clear that a "spamming" campaign was involved. One Guardian journalist, with dual American and British nationality - a strong supporter of the exercise - believed the reaction illustrated the intimidatory tactics of the angry right. The response of Democrats, fearing that their cause would be harmed, showed that the intimidation worked. The intention was to smother free speech. The G2 exercise sought to open up debate.

Having read through many of the emails, and while acknowledging the letters of thanks and support among them, my own view is that the paper in carrying out the exercise through the intrusive use of the voters' list, has prejudiced some of the goodwill it has built up in America and unnecessarily excited its enemies. It has sought to intervene in the US election, with unpredictable consequences.

In a poll I conducted among Guardian staff who had been following the story, of 71 respondents, 13 thought it a legitimate and worthwhile exercise, 14 were undecided and 44 were against it. Among the reasons given by the latter, reflecting complaints coming from the US, were that intervention in the democratic processes of another country was not "legitimate newspaper behaviour"; and that it was arrogant and self-aggrandising.

Several were dismayed that the internet effect had apparently not been anticipated, one saying that the speed with which links to the Guardian story spread showed that "this perceived insult has legs". Another commented: "It seems a shame that, in this interactive age, with email and weblogs all around, we rejected any attempt to have a real conversation with US voters." Several mentioned that the buoyant and jaunty nature of G2 journalism, marking a cultural distinction from the broadsheet, was not apparent on the website.

The editor of the Guardian, defending the exercise, said it was a crucially important election in the face of which many felt a sense of impotence. "What we did was simply to invite personal acts of communication from one individual to another. Most of the letters sent by Guardian readers, those I have seen, have been responsible and heartfelt."

┬ĚReaders may contact the office of the readers' editor by telephoning 0845 451 9589 (UK only, calls charged at local rate) or +44 (0)20 7713 4736 between 11am and 5pm UK time Monday to Friday excluding UK bank holidays. Mail to Readers' editor, The Guardian, 119 Farringdon Road, London EC1R 3ER, UK. Fax +44 (0)20 7239 9997. "

You have a right to your own opinions - You do not have a right to your own facts!