That sneer looks awfully permanent
Who might I have in mind? Step forward Dylan Sharpe, who has been hired as the Sun’s “Head of PR”, reporting directly to Managing Editor Sig Abell, and whose tenure has been marked by foot-in-mouth gaffes like his sending topless photos to a number of women who did not appreciate his juvenile stunt, and getting into arguments on Twitter when he might have been better employed doing the job he was being paid to do.
And all the while, Sharpe is in full conformity with Olbermann’s Dictum (“the right exists in a perpetual state of victimhood”). He is a victim. The rotten lefties are ganging up on him, sending “hate mobs” in pursuit of poor, downtrodden PRs. But, as Captain Blackadder might have observed, there was only one thing wrong with this idea - it was bollocks. Sharpe’s situation is entirely a product of his own actions.
This was demonstrated by his response to last week’s BBC Debate: “Why does this audience only ask questions about newsworthy issues?” he bleated. Because they’re in the news, meathead. That would be the industry you’re supposed to be working in. It got worse - then there had to be party political spin, followed by “Hold the front page: Labour apparatchik talks down Tory campaign shock!”
What’s the Guardian’s editorial line got to do with the Sun’s PR? Sharpe is there to promote the latter, so why does he spend so much time wandering off-piste? It gets worse still as he wallows in victimhood, deliberately provoking an argument with Peter Jukes: “you should look at my mentions, the hate mob being led by Mr Jukes” he complained to Phil Hendren. There was no “hate mob”, and Jukes was therefore not leading it.
This did not trouble him unduly: “@peterjukes as you know, that tweet was about the mob angry at our CPS leader. Are you comfortable twisting the truth to score a hit on me?” he snapped, unwilling to understand that there was still no mob, and that Jukes was still not leading it. “@peterjukes the only smear today has been you clipping my tweet out of context & inciting people to have a go at me. Really nasty stuff” was his last shot.
And, as Jon Stewart might have said, two things here. One, he started an argument he need not have, and two, Jukes did not smear him. The only “really nasty stuff” is coming from Sharpe’s squirming and spinning, the latter part of which he is supposed to be doing on behalf of the Sun - that pays him to do it. Right now he seems to be doing precious little of that. So the question has to be asked - is his presence really worth the candle?