Careers advice for school bullies: Get a newspaper column and do talk radio

Why the British media loves and rewards bullies and what we should do about it.

This has not been photoshopped

talkRADIO, the News UK owned propaganda outlet, is to radio stations what bleach is to refreshing beverages. Just as bleach is liquid but you shouldn’t really drink it, talkRADIO resembles reasonable speech output only in so far as it includes sounds emerging from human mouths. Its actual purpose is to stoke culture war at every turn and to give a platform to bullies and rat finks of all kinds. And so I come to Mike Graham…

‘Iron’ Mike Graham — imagine a cross between the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man and a bulldog in severe intestinal distress — spends his days on talkRADIO in a splenetic rage… for money. But his most tedious and unpleasant output is a show called Plank of the Week, of which talkRADIO is so proud that it publishes it on YouTube.

The format of Plank of the Week is that Graham and a pair of Muttley-like guests each pick people they don’t like — usually politicians but sometimes journalists, actors, or miscellaneous individuals — and spend 45 minutes slagging them off under the pretence of satire and news commentary.

Graham’s guests tend to be an outwardly aesthetically appealing woman from a think-tank or right wing publication teamed with one of his colleagues from talkRADIO. Every show is punctuated by Graham’s pomposity and oleaginous unpleasantness.

I wish I could say that Graham, who played his bullying tendencies as an editor in the Scottish newspaper industry followed by stints at various other radio stations before he washed up at talkRADIO, is an isolated example. He isn’t — the British media makes stars of bullies time and time again.

The most well-remunerated are columnists with sinecured slots like Littlejohn, Liddle, and Clarkson, and the owner operators of toilets masquerading as websites such as Paul “appropriately named” Staines of Guido Fawkes. One rung down are the talk show toilers — Julia Hartley-Brewer, Mike Graham, Dan Wootton and the like. And at the lowest level there are the deputy prefect snides including Guido’s tedious teaboy Tom Harwood and professionally-ignorant carnival barker Darren Grimes.

If you’re a ‘good’ bully and you put the work in, you’ll be promoted. Witness the career of chuckling cuckold Harry Cole, who has risen from a tank-riding tit at Guido Fawkes via the Daily Mail stable to a position as the well-paid propagandistic political editor at The Sun; while his shirts may now fit, his opinions are still liquid shit.

Despite periodically and hypocritically joining in with campaigns that decry bullying in schools, the British media — predominantly the tabloids but broadsheets aren’t immune (Hello, Barbara Ellen, David Aaronovitch, and Janice Turner, to name just three!) — engages in the most pathetic playground pugnaciousness on a daily basis. Bullies are rewarded, lauded, and loved in an industry that has all the moral probity of an alley cat injected with Alan Clark’s DNA.

Fuck the lot of them.