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Thursday, April 12, 2007 

Scum-watch: Even more mendacious than a banana republic.

Will anyone take today's Sun front page seriously? Seeing as it couldn't exactly splash on the continuing fallout surrounding the decision to allow the captured sailors to sell their stories, it was left to highlight the truly amazing response to its online poll, which resulted in according to the article, 99% of respondents "demanding" Sarah's law.

As noted yesterday, the poll was hardly going to deliver any other outcome than the one that Wade wanted. Not only were the questions loaded so heavily that if you disagreed with them you ended up looking like an apologist for child abuse or just an idiot, but there wasn't even a don't know option offered so that you could disagree entirely with the methodology used.

It's often noted that a 99% result in favour of one motion or party is a sure sign of a dictatorship or a banana republic, with either vote rigging or plain mendacity being involved, and there's certainly nothing here to suggest that the Sun should not be tarred with the same brush. The one surprise of the poll is that only 84% felt that the human rights of paedophiles mattered less than their "potential" victims, which either goes to show that Sun readers' are more in favour of universal human rights than most would think, that those opposed to Sarah's law tried to skew the results, or that the Sun thought that they couldn't have a 99% result to all the questions: after all, that would just make people mock the sheep mentality. Most damning of all is that the Sun doesn't provide any figures for those who took part in the poll: for all we know, it could be 99% of 100 "demanding" Sarah's law. For a newspaper that sells 3 million copies a day and which claims a total readership of around 8 million, shouldn't they be boasting of how many thousands support Sarah's law?

Perhaps that might be left to the coming days, for the Sun has now started a petition calling for the full implementation of a law based on Megan's law:

We the undersigned want 'Sarah's law' - a law that would reveal perverts' whereabouts.

This petition, signed below, is For Sarah and For All Our Children.

You can add your name to our list by filling in the boxes below.*

As there is no way to even register your opposition this time, I signed it with my name as "I oppose Sarah's law" and address as "for the same reason the NSPCC does: there is no evidence that Sarah's law would make children safer." You might want to do something similar, even if it's a worthless gesture. The previous survey is also still open.

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Yeah, I've done the same. I also completed the poll several times over yesterday guess that 16% was partly me! Oh well.

When The Sun has very little copy, it consults its "rogues' gallery" of "dole scroungers...asylum seekers...paedophiles...Jayde Goody...trade unionists...Britney Spears...England Football Team Managers..."

Although the paper sells well, it is a comic. It is cleverly put together naff news copy. Its owner is clever, but extremely naff - the sort of person who farts in polite company and demand to know "who did that?" or the sort of person who leaves his finger imprints on rejected buffet lunch sandwiches which he has put back in the serving tray - nasty little wretch.

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