From misleading DWP ads to doctored TV footage, here’s proof you can’t trust a word the Tories say

Boris Johnson
Support us and go ad-free

Most people know on a gut level that you can’t trust the Tories. But two stories in the last 24 hours show explicitly why the party cannot be trusted.

Boris Johnson will promise the moon on a stick to get elected – or at least numerous fantasy hospitals and possibly a couple of unicorns. But his promises are empty and his party will lie and manipulate to achieve whatever result it wants. And as election campaigns begin in earnest, this is important to remember.

The DWP’s phoney ads

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) spent £225,000 on an advertising campaign which included a full wrap-around cover ad on the Metro and a four page advertorial feature. The ads were supposed to dismantle “myths” about its flagship benefit, Universal Credit.

But instead of setting the record straight, it appears the DWP created more myths. Or, in the interests of setting the record straight, it used public money to lie. The Advertising Standards Authority banned the ads and found that several claims the DWP made were false or omitted key information, including:

  • That people could get into work faster on Universal Credit.
  • That claimants could get an advance on payments from the jobcentre.
  • That rent could be paid directly to landlords.

Chief executive of poverty-fighting charity Z2K Raji Hunjan said that this raises questions over what else the government is “misleading us on”. And Hunjan delivered a clear message about the future of Universal Credit:

The next government must engage with the compelling evidence that points to the harm UC is causing, leaving many people reliant on food banks and others destitute. Enough is enough.

Doctoring footage

But Tories manipulating the media seems to be a recurring theme. As BBC journalist Daniel Sanford pointed out:

Read on...

Support us and go ad-free

Sandford also posted the original clip:

But what’s key here is that this isn’t a rogue Tory-supporting account engaging in a bit of video editing. This is the Conservatives’ main blue tick Twitter account with 431,000 followers. Even Piers Morgan called the party out on the tweet – albeit with the customary ‘neutrality’ we’ve come to expect from certain TV presenters:

Tip of the iceberg

These are just two incidents that have come to light in the last day. The full extent of Tory lies is huge. And Johnson is a master of using them. From continually using the discredited £350m-a-week-to-the-NHS figure, to lying about Turkey joining the EU, to lying about lying about the fact that he said Turkey was going to join the EU, he is utterly shameless.

Each and every time Johnson or the Conservative Party lies, we need to shout about it, we need to expose it. But we also need to keep telling alternative stories, the real tales of how and why they’ve fucked us over. This is why initiatives like #ToryStory are so important. We all have our own stories about what this government has done to us. The Tories will keep spending huge amounts of money manipulating the truth. But we can counter this. We can make sure no-one believes them.

And most importantly, we can use this collective power to kick them out for good.

Featured image via screengrab – BBC

Support us and go ad-free

We know everyone is suffering under the Tories - but the Canary is a vital weapon in our fight back, and we need your support

The Canary Workers’ Co-op knows life is hard. The Tories are waging a class war against us we’re all having to fight. But like trade unions and community organising, truly independent working-class media is a vital weapon in our armoury.

The Canary doesn’t have the budget of the corporate media. In fact, our income is over 1,000 times less than the Guardian’s. What we do have is a radical agenda that disrupts power and amplifies marginalised communities. But we can only do this with our readers’ support.

So please, help us continue to spread messages of resistance and hope. Even the smallest donation would mean the world to us.

Support us
  • Show Comments
    1. “You could have had plenty of fun with that interview anyway”
      That is not neutrality and neither was their interview style.
      “Were running out of time.”
      No they weren’t. They carried on for a while after that. They were bombarding him and not letting him get a word in edgeways, especially to overturn their false agenda.
      If they had meant the questions genuinely, they would have asked them politely and let him answer them properly.
      Whole media needs a MASSIVE makeover. Has to be fully accountable!

    Leave a Reply

    Join the conversation

    Please read our comment moderation policy here.