Where does the buck stop with anonymous online abuse?

Jul 30, 2018 by

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Suzanne Moore –

When public figures are no longer held to account for their misdeeds, it opens the door for nameless people to spew vitriol without consequences

Harry Truman had a sign on his desk that said: “The buck stops here”. Obama slightly rephrased this in 2014 when the Democrats did not do well in the mid-terms. That may as well have been the neolithic era. Now, the buck doesn’t stop anywhere, it just goes on to make more bucks. We used to talk about the end of deference; I will believe that when Theresa May stops looking like she is playing a game of Twister every time she meets a minor royal, or when some egomaniac businessman is not treated as a deity because he has invented a see-through vacuum cleaner.

What has actually happened is the end of accountability.The bigger you are, the less accountable you are. This is now just an accepted fact of life. Bankers caused a crash and walked away unscathed. George Osborne was the architect of austerity, which left the fabric of so many lives in tatters. Now, he has about 10 part-time jobs, one of which is editing a newspaper, and still he gives advice to his party. “If the Conservative party does not try to reconnect with modern Britain, with urban, with ethnically diverse, sexually diverse Britain it is politically screwed,” says the man who screwed the poorest people in the country. Soon, his nasty fantasy of chopping up May and putting her in bags in his freezer may come true.

But never mind, he is as likely to be held to account as his bezzie, the chillaxing David Cameron in his posh shed, who thought a referendum was a great idea and then waltzed off to cheers from the House of Commons. Boris Johnson is not accountable for anything ever: lies, fathering children, hanging out with Steve Bannon. At least we know their names, these people who wreak havoc. There is no shadowy conspiracy any longer. Arron Banks, Nigel Farage, Andy Wigmore – they tread from one dodgy deal to another.They hide in plain sight. Nothing is beneath them, from posting photoshopped video clips of Observer journalist Carole Cadwalladr being slapped to addressing far-right rallies in Germany.

Source: Where does the buck stop with anonymous online abuse? | Suzanne Moore | Opinion | The Guardian

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