If you ever find yourself being depressed by the state of the UK news industry, and by guilty association, the flak industry that informs it, try this simple trick: go to America for a bit.
Honestly, it will make you feel proud. This is not to say that the best American journalism isn’t terrific – it is. The run of the day stuff, the evening news, is astonishingly bad.
Exhibit A: The main item on the 7pm local news last Thursday was this: A woman was driving her kids to school. But she forgot the kids! This was high drama.
She returned home. And collected the kids from her waiting husband.
This was shocking. But everyone saw the funny side. This wasn’t the “funny” bit at the end of the bulletin. It was the main news. Because nothing else of import is much going on.
Sometimes UK hacks and flaks can allow themselves to remember that we’re much better at this stuff than we tend to think.