Sunday, 29 August 2010

Official versions

Sometimes, when journalists feel the need to prove how important they are - okay, forget the 'sometimes' - they mention their interview partners and we then get to read or hear that journalist so and so talked with the prime minister, the foreign minister, the president etc. The typical questions go along these lines: How do you feel about this and that, what are your plans for the future etc. etc. It is all a bit of a joke, really.

I mean: the last person - actually, the very last person - I would ask if I wanted to understand a certain political problem is some minister or some governmental spokesperson. Remember the riots in Bangkok of last May? The Tagesanzeiger in Zurich interviewed the Swiss ambassador! Well, what does an ambassador know except how to read newspapers (in Thai?), converse with other ambassadors, and meet with business people?

Official versions are always polished versions, they never tell the truth. It does not cease to baffle me that we even bother to listen to them. Well, come to think of it - we probably don't.

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