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Wednesday, 11 September 2013

God Interviews His Linkman

63198058“Hello, good evening and ….”

“Welcome, Sir David. Here,  I do the interviews. So while you peer through the keyhole of My home, I’ll scrutinise your prodigious lifetime’s output –  generally, a fine use of your Christian Methodist  inheritance.

“But I must also look at how you squandered  My gift of communication. Perhaps you’ll agree that you misused it, not by abandoning your first intended career in the Church but by blurring the lines between reportage and show business; stage-managing politics as entertainment? David, the TV studio became your pulpit and current affairs, your holy writ. Please consider whether by this commingling you degraded the profession of broadcast journalism and are therefore guilty of a breach of trust”? Do you not think an apology is due?


Why else, barely days after the famous U.K. broadcaster’s sudden death, did the media deride present Prime Minister David Cameron’s performance at the recent G20 political summit, likening his defence of Britain as a great super power to that of actor Hugh Grant playing a fictional counterpart in the 2003 Richard Curtis  romantic comedy, Love Actually?

Surely, were it not for Frost’s relentless erasure of the lines between reality and fantasy, Andrew Marr, a current high profile political presenter and commentator, would not have quizzed Maurice Lord Saatchi about his brother, Charles’s failed marriage to TV chef Nigella Lawson. And if the previous sentence reads like tacky, low grade gossip then this piece has done its work. But there’s more!

Well regarded and physically attractive lightweight actors like the U.K.’s Grant and American Angelina Jolie are commercially successful. Nonetheless their personalities reflect that of the thespian of popular imagination: vacuous, two dimensional and over-ready to have their heads filled by every new fad.

I was, for example, infuriated by Jolie’s much self-publicised choice to have a ‘preventative double mastectomy’, especially as I understand that her breasts had been healthy. Her decision was based purely on an appalling history of female cancer in her family and she claimed that following surgery, her risk of developing the disease had  dropped from 87 per cent to under five per cent.

The grief caused by untimely deaths in a  family is quite awful and Jolie has my every sympathy. However, there are other well-known attractive and talented women – Nigella Lawson among them – who too have lost close relatives to cancer. But I don’t recall their being susceptible to every passing medical whim and fancy. It is bad enough when people are forced to have breasts removed when they develop the disease. This causes great psychological trauma as well as acute initial discomfort, as Jolie outlines.

But her account of her experience shows a quite astounding inability to differentiate between reality and fantasy and proves that she saw the entire business as an extension of her work. She wrote,”You wake up with drain tubes and expanders in your breasts. It does feel like a scene out of a science-fiction film”.

How can you reason with someone who thinks like that? I won’t try but will instead remind her – and anyone reading this – that her article  acknowledged the “many wonderful holistic doctors working on alternatives to surgery”. 

So I conclude this piece with a video clip  illustrating natural cures for breast cancer. These are not easy. They require courage, determination and strength from real-life characters. Would the professional heirs to Frost be able to make the distinction? I fear not.


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