On this the 2nd anniversary of Pride’s Purge – a really big and sincere thank you to all the readers and supporters of this blog.
Since I started this blog, I get insulted and trolled on social media on a daily basis. I’ve been threatened with libel so many times I’ve lost count. And I’ve even received threats of violence and death.
Don’t get me wrong though – I’m not complaining. If truth be known, my ego loves the attention. In fact I’m quite fond of the trolls. They might be trolls but they’re my trolls.
Joking aside, I have to admit, when I started this blog just 2 years ago I had no idea how hard it would be to speak freely and to tell the truth.
Believe me, there are a lot of powerful people who really really really don’t like the idea of plebs being able to talk and communicate freely outside the control of the establishment.
And these powerful people are not just the usual suspects – top ranking establishment figures paying lawyers huge amounts of money to scare off anyone thinking of mentioning anything about them they don’t like the sound of.
It also includes people you may think are ‘anti-establishment’ – both on the Left and on the Right.
The recent controversy about journalist Mehdi Hasan – a real darling of the left-wing anti-establishment until it was revealed he was willing to sell himself out for a few dirty coins from the Daily Mail’s Lord Rothermere – is a good illustration of this.
Because most worryingly of all, this desire by the establishment to shut up anyone trying to speak uncomfortable truths, very often includes journalists themselves.
I’ve mentioned before that of all the people I’ve written critically about on this blog, journalists are the most likely to jump up and down threatening libel at the drop of a hat – probably because they have the most to lose from the spread of social media.
So much for journalists supporting freedom of speech. It seems a lot of journalists are only interested in free speech just so long as it’s them and not the plebs doing the speaking.
In fact, if there’s one thing I’ve learnt over the last two years – it’s that free speech is much too valuable to be left in the hands of professional journalists.
But it’s also much too important to leave it to a few self-selected spokesmen and women – a handful of bloggers, activists, journalists who pop up on our TV screens and in our newspapers regularly claiming to speak on behalf of the rest of us.
The biggest shock for me when I started writing this blog was how aggressively hostile the giants of the so-called ‘left-wing’ blogosphere would be to the truth being spoken too.
As a left-wing blogger I expected hostility from the Right – but not from the Left.
I obviously didn’t realise that left-wing bloggers were not supposed to mention unions who bully individuals who they see as troublesome.
Or question so-called left-wing journalists in the pay of right-wing rags like the Mail and the Express who misuse their power and influence to trace personal phone numbers of private social media users in order to bully them into silence.
And I didn’t realise I was also supposed to keep quiet about MPs who claimed massive amounts in expenses from the taxpayer for items like biscuits, soap and coasters if the MP in question was involved in cosy little secret meetings with leading activists.
Because I refused to shut up about these things – and believe me I was ‘asked’ directly several times to do just that – there has been a concerted attempt to freeze me out and discredit this blog.
Which is, I suppose, one way of looking at satire.
Exploring the increasingly blurred lines between establishment lies and spin and the truth is exactly what this blog is all about.
And unlike many of my critics on both the Left and the Right, I don’t presume readers of this blog are so stupid they can’t distinguish between truth and lies – which is the real purpose of satire.
However, the fact that this is now one of the top ten most-read blogs in the UK and regularly gets thousands of views a day – sometimes tens of thousands – shows the attempts at discrediting it have clearly failed.
Thanks to you.
And it is precisely because of you – the people who are reading this blog right now – that the concerted attempts to shut it up have failed. The truth is that the more popular it is – the less likely it is that it can be closed down. The very act of reading this blog protects it and makes it more likely the truth can be told.
So thank you.
And a very happy birthday to Pride’s Purge.
Please share. Thanks.