There’s an old vaudeville routine that dates back to the 30s involving Sigmund Freud. The conceit is that Freud spent so long analyzing the science of comedy that he’d proven that there were only five different jokes in the world: the pun, the switch, the reveal and getting the number of items in a list wrong. Thanks to the internet, though, we now have a sixth joke: repeatedly saying the opposite of what you believe in a sarcastic manner and trying to pass it off as “satire”.
Actual opposition to the Daily Mail is confused, because it’s a population that operates as two separate enterprises. The first is its website, which is a place to go to watch pictures of a grown man who refers to himself as “Arg” fall out of a nightclub. The second is its print publication, which pushes a kind of old school Little Englander approach that hasn’t been a legitimate presence in British politics since Bonar Law was sat in the big chair.
I’m sure at some level the Daily Mail is toxic, but how would I know? How do you know? Nobody of our age has read their print version. You might try leafing through it at your grandmother’s, but you’d need JFK-level speed-reading ability to find the vitriolic polemic hidden between all the adverts for comfort fit pyjamas. So no, most online hatred of the Daily Mail is targeted towards its showbiz and online coverage, claiming that it’s misogynistic and ugly. And the best way of doing this is to call Samantha Brick and Liz Jones ugly cunts. Isn’t that right, the Daily Mash?
@DailyMailStyle is a parody account that has literally no idea of what it’s parodying, and can only really be followed or enjoyed by people so insecure in their political beliefs that they needed to be reminded every single morning that they’re “lefties”. Or, at least, the kind of fuckwit that’d put “leftie” in their Twitter bio. It seems to think that the Daily Mail is home to every single right-wing political viewpoint of the past two centuries, from paleoconservatism to colonial monarchism. Whereas really the Mail is a website that pushes a right-wing agenda because it’s good for web hits. I mean, take this as a “joke”:
Right-wing politicians are well-connected and can get things done. Left-wing politicians call in favours from cronies.
The problem with that as an idea of what would feature in the Mail is… it just isn’t. 166 stories on the Mail’s website feature the words “Cameron” and “cronies” in the first paragraph, compared to just 57 for “Miliband” and “cronies”. This is for two reasons. Firstly, it’s impossible to imagine Ed Miliband having anyone who could be close enough to him as a friend that he could promote into a job. Secondly, “Cameron” and “cronies” alliterate. I mean, that’s the rule of journalism, you go with what works regardless of whatever views you have.
And that’s kinda the point here, really. @DailyMailStyle is on this list because it exemplifies that most disgusting of Twitter trends: the account that was created solely because its writer wants a cheap cash-in book deal. So next March, when there’s copies of The Unofficial Guide on How to Write Like the Daily Mail stacked as high as your chest in The Works alongside all the autobiographies by Gilette Soccer Saturday pundits, just remember who gave you this warning from history first.
“Irregular verb time: Regular people dodge taxes, celebrities evade taxes, corporations optimise their tax liabilities.”
“Housing: A £3m house in Holland Park lived in by a celebrity: “modest”. A £350k house in Leeds lived in by a benefit claimant: “palatial”.”
“Remember to support Britain’s Andy Murray at Wimbledon, and commiserate with Scotland’s Andy Murray when he’s knocked out.”