Wednesday 27 October 2004

Inappropriate impartiality.

Newton Emerson, author of the spectacularly funny Portadown News, has written an equally brilliant, but not actually funny, opinion piece about the nature of political humour.

The bogus concept of impartiality is a lead weight tied around the ankle of Ulster humour. Viewed from a sufficient distance it may well be true that both sides are as bad as each other but having to say so at every turn blurs the detail up close and takes the edge off sharp observations.

Day to day, issue to issue, both sides are not always as bad as each other or, at least, may be equally bad in very different ways.

It strikes me that it's not just Ulster humour for which this forced impartiality is a problem.

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