Last Friday, the Head of Output for Channel 4 News and ITV, Oliver King, made an outrageous statement on Twitter.
No insulin is made in the UK. It can't be by March. No deal Brexit threatens supply according to Medicines Regulator Sir Michael Rawlings. What are the government going to do to prevent type-1 diabetics dying ?— oliver king (@oliverjamesking) July 27, 2018
It’s a serious thing to consider if it were true – but it’s not. In fact, there are at least two manufacturing outfits in the UK that produce insulin – Wockhardt based in Wrexham, and Eli Lilly in Basingstoke. This isn’t secret information, and nor is it difficult to find. This head of output for a major news channel in the UK could have found this information our with a cursory Google search – but he didn’t.
This is how fake news operates, and it’s symptomatic of a perpetually-outraged and consistently untruthful media establishment that is engaging in Project Fear 2.0. The original Project Fear campaign ran throughout the Brexit referendum period in 2016, with politicians and big business warning of impending doom should we vote to leave the European Union. They thought it would work, but it didn’t. We voted decisively to leave – and ever since, they’ve been upping their game.
Project Fear 2.0 is much more vicious and fervorous and it’s stooped as low as scaring people into believing Brexit might kill them.
I’ve already mentioned the claims that Brexit will impact on our supply of sandwiches, and make cheese a luxury – but over the weekend, it was suggested in the national press that Brexit could lead to the spread of "super gonorrhoea" and other diseases.
The story appeared as a result of journalists conflating comments by Niall Dickson, the chief exec of the NHS Confederation, with the story of a man who contracted the world’s worst super-gonorrhoea and brought it back to the UK.
Dickson reasonably explained that diseases don’t know any borders, and it’s important for the UK to cooperate with the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. Combine the fearmongering suggestion that Brexit means Britain would be cut off from the rest of the world, with the story of a man who contracted super gonorrhoea, and you’ve got yourself one hell of a story – and one hell of a piece of propaganda.
It doesn’t stop there, either. The Daily Mail reported that doctors were warning that delaying the transportation of radioactive medicines used to treat tumours could put cancer patients at risk. Once again, this depends on the ludicrous suggestion that Brexit means an inability to effectively trade with the rest of the world and Europe.
A Brexit negotiated by a truly strong and stable leader would not see any such problems. Once again, this is fearmongering and propaganda from a ramped-up Project Fear.
The government has even had to tell the press that they are not in fact planning for the Armed Forces to maintain food and other supplies in the event of a No Deal Brexit – as if that was ever on the cards in the first place. This is propaganda that even Goebbels would be impressed by.
It’s not just me that’s noticing it, either. Even Tory MP Peter Bone spoke up about it, telling The Express:
“This tops it all. It’s palpable nonsense. This is as stupid as the Project Fear stuff in the referendum and it’s all being done for the same reason – to scare people in the hope we will either agree to a Brexit in name only, or stay in.”
And he’s right. In fact, new polls show that the British people have been successfully scared away from Brexit.
A Sky Data poll announced today shows that, in the event of a three-option second referendum, 58% would vote to Remain, 32% would vote to leave the EU with no deal, and 10% would vote to leave the EU with the government’s deal.
It’s fascinating that more would prefer no deal. In fact, it’s somewhat comforting – but it’s concerning we’re losing the argument 42% to 58%.
We must also consider another couple of things here. First off, those who responded "don’t know" have been excluded from the data, and we’ll never really know just how many shied away from providing their real opinion on the subject. The Shy Brexit vote won it for us last time, and maybe it would again. But this data remains unsettling.
The fearmongering in the press, combined with the unmitigated vitriol from politicians who have no idea what the life of normal people is like, is turning people away from the most positive political decision they have made in their lifetime. Working people who were brave enough to stand up to the Establishment and say “we’re not happy with how you’re running this country” and “we don’t want to be ruled by foreign bureaucrats”, are being forced to cower in the corner while the politicians just get on with ignoring their decision.
This is how the politicians break down, subjugate, and silence the masses. They provide the illusion of choice at election times, and in the event of referenda going the wrong way, they’ll collude to scupper the negotiating process and claim they tried their hardest to make it work. Their final step is to lie about the effects of implementing our decision, and hopefully give us another chance to make the right decision next time.
Project Fear is very much out of control, and I fear it’s working.