Some scrutiny-free coverage from the UK's flagship news programme
This was one of the items in the all-important 8am headlines on BBC Radio 4’s Today, the UK’s flagship news programme. This is the story, as read by the newsreader, in its entirety:
It’s almost beyond parody — no note of scepticism, only respectful repetition of the official language of the Communist leadership.
The claim of moving 100 million people out of poverty may well be technically true. Totalitarian regimes can force through technology in an underdeveloped country and achieve these kinds of numbers — look at the USSR in the 50s and 60s. But at what cost? Horrendous pollution, families separated by internal migration, poor working conditions, vast soulless cities devoid of beauty, mass surveillance. The list goes on.
Can you imagine the same kind of uncritical reporting of, say President Trump, or even our own UK politicians? It’s very odd. It doesn’t feel like too much to ask that pronouncements and propaganda from the Chinese Communist Party are subjected to at least the same level of scrutiny as our own elected representatives.