The Project 3.0 – where are we going from here?

Adam Bienkov has an excellent piece out on Guto Harri, Boris Johnson, and the Murdochs. Harri was one of the alternative candidates to Andy Coulson for the No.10 press job, of course, then he worked for Johnson, and now he’s off to work for Murdoch.

Bienkov points out that there is an increasing tendency for the survivors of The Project, 2.0 to rally around Boris Johnson’s City Hall. Partly this is the long-standing Murdoch procedure of hopping on the bandwagon and then pretending to have been the horse all along. The Shower Jobby has won something recently and that’s more than any other Tory has.

At the same time, I think I notice a slight change of tone from Harri. Rather than admitting error, there’s a swing back to denialism and whining.

It’s also true that Boris Johnson’s career as mayor has been a preview of the future that the national-level Tories had planned for. Bienkov:

Under his guidance, Johnson has fought against Labour’s stereotype of him as a swivel-eyed Tory

Well, you could say the same about David Cameron’s late-property boom designer cupcake Conservatism. The operational art is more interesting. However cupcakey the warm words, Johnson’s media and political management relied on positively Ukrainian oligarch politics. When the opposition on the London Assembly wanted to ask questions, the Tories walked out and rendered the assembly inquorate. Every time. Harri dealt with Johnson’s blabbermouth side by simply refusing interview requests or press questions. I’ve said before that London politics is not poorly reported, it is not reported. This suited them right down to the ground. The capstone was the appointment of Sarah Sands as editor of the Evening Standard, which was submitted to Johnson (or possibly Harri) for prior approval.

Meanwhile, Harri put in huge amounts of effort to threaten the BBC London operation with a campaign from “friendly newspapers”. Let’s not be too naive here. The ones he means will be the ones who now employ him and he was probably already on a promise. This is well worth reading.

If you wanted information, you had to rely on the blogs and the problem there is that the fuckers, you know, them out there, just won’t do it.

Now, where has the toast of VDARE and former policy wonk to the Jobby, Anthony Browne, ended up? At the British Bankers’ Association. Surely useful. Is that an improvement over the Met as a place to store spin doctors?

1 Comment on "The Project 3.0 – where are we going from here?"

  1. Where are we going from here?

    In looking at a triangular relationship between politicians, press and (sort of) policeman, the history of Montesinos in Peru may be of some slight interest.

    “Montesinos paid a television-channel owner about 100 times what he paid a judge
    or a politician. One single television channel’s bribe was five times larger than
    the total of the opposition politicians’ bribes. By revealed preference, the
    strongest check on the government’s power was the news media.”

    None of the participants ran a media operation as a hobby. Perhaps not 3.0 though, they had contracts and it was definitely transactional for some.


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